Where do we go now?

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  • 10-09-2007, 09:57 AM
    PAOGORMAN2001
    Where do we go now?
    Have just completed my mid fi system and I love it

    NAD C162 PRE
    NAD C272 POWER
    NAD C521BEE CD PLAYER
    B&W CM1 SPEAKERS
    BOSTON ACOUSTICS PV700 SUB
    COPPERHEAD INTERCONNECTS
    I was told by an audIio dealer that I would have to spend quite a bit more to attain a small amount of improvement.
    My question
    Is there some small tweaks that I can do to make an audible difference?
    Is the cd player the weakest link?
    Speaker placement is limited due to room config in the condo
    Just tryin to max out my system on a pauper's budget.

    Thanks Pogo
  • 10-09-2007, 10:48 AM
    elapsed
    Here are some of the tweaks I use (straight from my favorite Naim resource site). These are basically just common sense tips

    - When plugging in your system, try to keep other stuff like computers and TVs off the same circuit. This will isolate your hi-fi somewhat from all those evil, noise creating switch mode power supplies.

    - While wiring your system, it pays to engage in a ritual called cable dressing. Ensure power cords and signal cords don't touch or run parallel. If they must touch, have them meet at 90 degree angles. Signal cords are rather microphonic- flicking the tonearm lead is clearly audible through the speakers. As such, cords shouldn't touch any part of your rack or wall.

    - While laying speaker cable, avoid looping extraneous cable, as the tight coil will create unwanted inductance. Instead, create a series of S bends (accordion style).

    - Organize your boxes so that amps and power supplies are at least 12 inches away from pre-amps and CD players.

    - Make sure your rack is perfectly level and doesn't rock. A skewed rack will affect the performance of your system.
  • 10-09-2007, 12:08 PM
    SlumpBuster
    Great list, Elapsed. Spoken like a true tweaker.

    The real problem here is that you are starting with a very good system. It will be most improved by room placement, but I understand that is often the most limited tweak. But I would suggest two things.

    First, you make no mention of stands, but I assume you have good ones based on the rest of the system. If not, look at improving your stands. Shot load them if you can. Spike them if it makes sense. Look at the coupleling between the speaker and stand.

    Second. Visit rivesaudio.com. Buy one of their test CDs and spl meters. Follow their instructions and tips. It will help integrate the Boston with the B&W. Also, it will help you with whatever small room placement changes you can make.
  • 10-09-2007, 12:17 PM
    elapsed
    Third. Tweaking and upgrading can drive you mad. Relax and enjoy the music, isn't that what it's all about? :)
  • 10-09-2007, 12:51 PM
    PeruvianSkies
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by elapsed
    Third. Tweaking and upgrading can drive you mad. Relax and enjoy the music, isn't that what it's all about? :)

    I would definitely agree with that. I think the next best step is to become well-acquainted with your current setup to the point where you are content for a period of time and know the system inside and out. You know every little nuance of the system and during that time you can plot out a list of what you would like to work on next that you feel is lacking, then when you do make that upgrade or transfer you will clearly know because you are so well acquainted with the way it was. Some people have the nasty habit of upgrading in such a short span of time that they never really get to enjoy the small details of each upgrade.
  • 10-09-2007, 01:13 PM
    dean_martin
    The C162 is supposed to have a decent phono section. You might consider adding a turntable in the future. Also, if you have doubts about the cd player now, chances are they won't go away until you compare it to something else. You might see if you can get an NAD C542 for a home trial. I've read that the 521 and 542 have different sounds - the 521 comes across as more detailed and lean and the 542 comes across as richer and fuller.
  • 10-10-2007, 09:04 AM
    PAOGORMAN2001
    Thanks for the feedback from everyone. The stands that I am using are Paradigm and are quite nice. Sitting back and enjoying the seup will not be a chore. I am amazed at the CM1 speakers. I had posted a month or so ago about being disappointed with them right out of the box but now they "sing" I will take the advise and hold on and enjoy what I have

    Pogo
  • 10-11-2007, 01:59 AM
    pixelthis
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by PAOGORMAN2001
    Have just completed my mid fi system and I love it

    NAD C162 PRE
    NAD C272 POWER
    NAD C521BEE CD PLAYER
    B&W CM1 SPEAKERS
    BOSTON ACOUSTICS PV700 SUB
    COPPERHEAD INTERCONNECTS
    I was told by an audIio dealer that I would have to spend quite a bit more to attain a small amount of improvement.
    My question
    Is there some small tweaks that I can do to make an audible difference?
    Is the cd player the weakest link?
    Speaker placement is limited due to room config in the condo
    Just tryin to max out my system on a pauper's budget.

    Thanks Pogo


    The most valuable "componet" is your audio dealer, he told you true, and sounds relatively
    honest.
    Its called the law of diminishing returns.
    A thousand dollar system will sound heaps better than a five hundred one, and a 2 or thre grand even better.
    But then you get to the the point that you have to spend more for less improvement.
    That last five % of improvement might cost you twenty grand.
    And if you can afford it and are fanantic enough...fine.
    BUT IF YOU ARE POOR LIKE ME, then 95% is fine.
    Don't think you can beat Nad and B&W
    As for "tweaking" thats what audio and HT nuts do between upgrades, small improvements,
    fussing with equipment placement, stands, wall treatments.
    Some call it nerotic, but its really kinda fun:1: