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New Jecklin Float QA !!! - Page 31

post #451 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitterbug View Post

I agree with everything you said. I myself am still in the 4 digit zone with my vinyls, and the suggested 15.000 mark was just a little joke. But I hope to be able to buy records for another few decades... not as a collector, but as a music nerd. We don't even own a TV at home, and spending long evenings with my partner (she is as much of an audio and music nut as myself) and / or friends in front of the stereo, or meeting around certain musical topics with everybody bringing records, files or CDs, is at least as wonderful as watching a great movie with friends. Having a pleasant, pristine system certainly helps to have us all spell bound and glued to the music. 

 

Speaking of expensive carts, I recently put a (pretty vintage) Audio Technica AT-OC30 MC that was retiped by Mr. van den Hul (the rest of my turntable consists of a highly modified Technics 1210 MkII with a Linn Akito arm, and Herbies's Way Excelent II Mat). I was always very sceptical of those carts in the 1000€+x area, but this one blows me away every time I put a record on... I am already dreading the moment when it's time has come, it's one of those items that made such a huge improvement that I would miss it so much.

 

But still, I can only second your last sentence- it's the music that moves us, and all technology should be forgotten about when listening to a truely unique recording or amazing work. I really like my system because it vanishes behind the music. LS3/5a magic... and I might have mentioned that before, the Floats give me exactly that sensation. I can listen to the music in such a precise way and still forget that I wear head phones. I just moved to another (also temporary) studio and the acoustics of the room are still awful and need a lot of tweaking and dampening, and having the Floats gives me instant means to continue working. Such a simple device, but such musicality.

Another TV free person - at last ! I agree with everything you said.

 

Regarding carts I : they are quite tough and if treated properly and retipperd regularly, can last decades. ATs seem to age well and if OC30 floats your boat, keep it sending to VdH and you will have a cost effective way of playing vinyl.

 

Regarding carts II : although I am a rational person and will approach any cart regardless of price through measurements ( worked briefly at Benz Micro Switzerland, etc, etc, etc ) , I would like to share an experience with a particularly good sample of Audio Note Soara cartridge. It is an inexpensive version of the mighty iO cart ( if a cart >2K can be called inexpensive ... ) - and its measurements were nothing to write home about, especially not at the price. HOWEVER - sound was another matter. TT was Voyd Reference, arm Helius Cyalene. This thing COMMUNICATED. Musically, that is. There are some great lieder on http://www.musikhaus-kietz.de/products/de/Klassik/Festkonzert-Schauspielhaus-Berlin-Vinyl-ETERNA-827785-786.html that were so moving on this record player I simply had to invite a friend to have a listen with Floats. On purpose I left the listening room and returned some 5-10 minutes later.

 

By the tears flowing from the closed eyes on the friend's cheeks it was clear that the musical message has gotten through. This is a great recording by any account - and it does sound good with high quality equipment. But that Soara transended the medium and put you right in front of those musicians.

post #452 of 663

Oh my, I seem to play in the mid fi league compared to your equipment... ;-)

 

I guess I simply don't make enough money with music to go down those routes. I also never really listened to systems in that sort of price range, since they were too far from my budget. I do try to make the most of my equipment, and usually replacing some of the stock components, like using better capacitors and tweaks from the relentless DIY community, have helped to elevate my systems from mediocre to great, at least measured by the kind of budget I have had at hand over the past few years. In comparison to your Helius Cyalene arm my little Akito must sound like a bit of a joke, but it was such an incredible upgrade to the stock arm...

 

What I like about the OC30 is it's precision, despite it's rather chilled presentation, which is evened out by the rest of my system. I love the breathtaking stage that it opens, and the clarity of it. I am sure there are many other great and by far better carts out there, but nothing that would be within reach at the moment.

 

So I am greatful for what I have, and happy for everybody that have the means to push the boundaries further. I am still not sure if I would shell out 100k or beyond for a stereo even if I could, or if I wouldn't rather give to charity...

post #453 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitterbug View Post

Oh my, I seem to play in the mid fi league compared to your equipment... ;-)

 

I guess I simply don't make enough money with music to go down those routes. I also never really listened to systems in that sort of price range, since they were too far from my budget. I do try to make the most of my equipment, and usually replacing some of the stock components, like using better capacitors and tweaks from the relentless DIY community, have helped to elevate my systems from mediocre to great, at least measured by the kind of budget I have had at hand over the past few years. In comparison to your Helius Cyalene arm my little Akito must sound like a bit of a joke, but it was such an incredible upgrade to the stock arm...

 

What I like about the OC30 is it's precision, despite it's rather chilled presentation, which is evened out by the rest of my system. I love the breathtaking stage that it opens, and the clarity of it. I am sure there are many other great and by far better carts out there, but nothing that would be within reach at the moment.

 

So I am greatful for what I have, and happy for everybody that have the means to push the boundaries further. I am still not sure if I would shell out 100k or beyond for a stereo even if I could, or if I wouldn't rather give to charity...

Haha, we are in the same boat - never said that table belonged to me. But because I am good with turntables, there are really very few things that play vinyl that did not get through my hands. 

 

Never heard OC30 - but remember dismissing OC9 both by listening ( on LS3/5As, after many years since I owned them ) and measurement. Hope OC30 is better.

 

Really like AT better MM offerings - 440MLa and up. That "up" is still reasonable, it goes approx to 800 for the 150ANV cart - but regular 150MLX at half the price is about equally good and musically satisfiying.

 

I like your reasoning regarding money - it would be kind of uneasy knowing my cart play cost say 5 or 10 $ per LP ( wear, retip and all that jazz ) - while there are people in this world who struggle and to whom the mere existance of head-fi must feel as an insult. I did find a few carts with unbelievable performance/price ratios - but by now they are so rare that I can not reveal their makes/models. And they require wizzardry beyond commonly available knowledge to truly start to sing. 

 

Since I know that people who really like music and should have a decent stereo usually struggle with money, I started to look into ways to make great analog a bit more affordable.

You can not compete with money no object designs, such as carts with cantilever and stylus made out of single piece of diamond - those will remain benchmark for those who can afford them. But anythging below that ultra top level is at least approacheable. 

 

I am not after exclusivity through design/price, I want performance good enough to  bring the listener to tears  on the recording mentioned - without causing the same to the listener's bank menager.

post #454 of 663

The OC30 wasn't a conscious decision, it came to me by chance- I actually got it as a present, since the previous owner's 2 year old son decided that it would be fun to break off the cantilever all together... he wanted to throw it away, so I asked him to rather give it to me instead.

 

I had it fixed by Mr. Schürholz in Germany, he did a remarkable job. Before that I had a AT 13EAV, a nice alrounder, and a keeper. It's on another (stock form) Technics 1210 MkII in my studio, and continues to do a fine job there. As with all equipment, at least in my "league"- it has its obvious downfalls, but I know how it performs, and I know it so well that by now it's a great little tool to me to judge my test pressings with. The 13EAV doesn't have any of the zing of the OC30, not the imaging, nor the clarity or precision. It dark and moody in comparison, and plays a little distant- but I sometimes really like that. 

 

Besides, I have some Concorde Broadcast carts (nothing great, but solid studio standard if you can't afford an EMT table all together), and had a Denon Dl103 that I wasn't able to mount on the Akito (surprise!!), so I sold it. 

 

Other carts I have owned include the Ortofon MC30 Super, many many years ago, but I never liked it. It used to sit on the SME 3009, but I sold the entire deck (a horrid, pretentious Transrotor Iron, cut from stainless steel- what was I thinking? To my defense I have to say that I wasn't even 20 when I bought it... and boy did I save money for it) to buy equipment for my first studio. I never missed it one bit. I also used to own a Technics SP10 with an SME 3009, but sold that as well. That one I do miss and I regret the sale very very much. I used to have Grados, and some other carts that I don't really remember- maybe I was too young to really appreciate, or better, understand them. I now have three Technics 1210 MKII's, in different configurations, and I feel that they are all the turntable I need- pragmatic, to the point, fully self-serviceable and incredibly reliable. And ugly... ;-)

 

Having the Akito / OC30 with the vdH tip on the Technics as described feels like the best turntable I ever owned- well, maybe also because I learned how to align my equipment properly over the years (which makes all the difference, as I am sure you know). I use the phono pre of a Camtech C101, and I love what comes out of my LS3/5a's. Or my Floats, but those are sitting in the studio most of the time.

post #455 of 663

Slow day for Floats...

post #456 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipsupt View Post

Slow day for Floats...

Only because I am currently 800 km away from them... ;-) 

post #457 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitterbug View Post

The OC30 wasn't a conscious decision, it came to me by chance- I actually got it as a present, since the previous owner's 2 year old son decided that it would be fun to break off the cantilever all together... he wanted to throw it away, so I asked him to rather give it to me instead.

 

I had it fixed by Mr. Schürholz in Germany, he did a remarkable job. Before that I had a AT 13EAV, a nice alrounder, and a keeper. It's on another (stock form) Technics 1210 MkII in my studio, and continues to do a fine job there. As with all equipment, at least in my "league"- it has its obvious downfalls, but I know how it performs, and I know it so well that by now it's a great little tool to me to judge my test pressings with. The 13EAV doesn't have any of the zing of the OC30, not the imaging, nor the clarity or precision. It dark and moody in comparison, and plays a little distant- but I sometimes really like that. 

 

Besides, I have some Concorde Broadcast carts (nothing great, but solid studio standard if you can't afford an EMT table all together), and had a Denon Dl103 that I wasn't able to mount on the Akito (surprise!!), so I sold it. 

 

Other carts I have owned include the Ortofon MC30 Super, many many years ago, but I never liked it. It used to sit on the SME 3009, but I sold the entire deck (a horrid, pretentious Transrotor Iron, cut from stainless steel- what was I thinking? To my defense I have to say that I wasn't even 20 when I bought it... and boy did I save money for it) to buy equipment for my first studio. I never missed it one bit. I also used to own a Technics SP10 with an SME 3009, but sold that as well. That one I do miss and I regret the sale very very much. I used to have Grados, and some other carts that I don't really remember- maybe I was too young to really appreciate, or better, understand them. I now have three Technics 1210 MKII's, in different configurations, and I feel that they are all the turntable I need- pragmatic, to the point, fully self-serviceable and incredibly reliable. And ugly... ;-)

 

Having the Akito / OC30 with the vdH tip on the Technics as described feels like the best turntable I ever owned- well, maybe also because I learned how to align my equipment properly over the years (which makes all the difference, as I am sure you know). I use the phono pre of a Camtech C101, and I love what comes out of my LS3/5a's. Or my Floats, but those are sitting in the studio most of the time.

Some bits of equipment you mentioned passed through my hands too. An AT13EAV is awaiting my decision whether to get a new stylus or not - it is a good cart, yet not that much more buys you stylus for 440MLa - which is better. And so on...

 

Proper alignment is the key to good performance and ultimate satisfaction we get from our equipment. Even the most modest of gear, properly aligned, will bring smile on the face of the listener.

 

Floats are very good to sonically check whether everything preceding them functions properly. If some think this debate went off topic - think again. Where are you likely to experience Floats ( or any really good earspeaker or headphone ) better than on good analog rig or hi rez digital ? 

post #458 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by analogsurviver View Post

  If some think this debate went off topic - think again. Where are you likely to experience Floats ( or any really good earspeaker or headphone ) better than on good analog rig or hi rez digital ? 

 

I don't follow the logic of the question above but I sure did skip the unrelated rumblings of the last few pages ;). Would be nice to read some more impressions of the users. MuppetFace, you're still following this thread?

post #459 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipsupt View Post

Slow day for Floats...

I saw in your signature that you also pair the old Float with the QA Power Supply... what did you think about the improvement in comparison to the old PS2? I am very curious to hear of others also found the improvement as dramatic as I did. I have the last revision of the PS2, with 2 transformers instead of four, and found the improvement breathtaking, in every single area.

post #460 of 663

The old floats went to Quad for a check up and some love.  They are all set and re-terminated for use with the new power supply.  Both are expected any day now and I will post impressions when I can.

 

Unfortunately I will not be able to compare it with the original power supply as it was not functioning and I decided to upgrade to the new supply instead of repairing it.  I would have repaired it as well, but with different plugs it was starting to make the project a little complicated.

 

I know of at least one other float owner who is fairly local with a PS2, so perhaps we can get together and do some caparisons.

post #461 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipsupt View Post

The old floats went to Quad for a check up and some love.  They are all set and re-terminated for use with the new power supply.  Both are expected any day now and I will post impressions when I can.

 

Unfortunately I will not be able to compare it with the original power supply as it was not functioning and I decided to upgrade to the new supply instead of repairing it.  I would have repaired it as well, but with different plugs it was starting to make the project a little complicated.

 

I know of at least one other float owner who is fairly local with a PS2, so perhaps we can get together and do some caparisons.

 

What I did was to ask Quad to cut off the old plug with a few cm of the old cable, and to make it into an adapter for the old PS2, so I can still have a setup that I can travel with- well, the good ol' PS2 is definitely travel-friendlier than the new QA that approximately weighs at least a ton (and is huge as well).

 

But at the same time, I am not sure if I actually ever want to listen to the old combo again... I found the difference in sound, precision, frequency range etc. so absurd in comparison, that I find it quite upsetting that the Float, until the release of the QA power supply, was doomed to play so far below the quality that it is actually capable of. Who knew? The QA power supply elevates a pair of great electrostatic headphones (with some awful limitations) to something totally else. It keeps all it's greatness and corrects all the limitations. The Floats with deep, natural bass? No more distortion in the high end? Yes. You have to hear it to believe it.

 

As I wrote before, there might be issues with vibration now, since it plays deeper than the frame was probably designed for. I described the rattling issues and what I did in an earlier post.

 

I am very curious to hear what you will have to say when you receive your new combo. Expect to be in for a treat... and oh my, what a treat it's going to be!!! :-D


Edited by Glitterbug - 3/9/13 at 9:34am
post #462 of 663

Hey, thanks for that!  I am going to ask them if they can do something similar.  

 

This way if I ever wanted to go ahead and buy the new Floats I could sell the old one with the old power supply. Brilliant!  

 

Worst case, at least I can do a comparison.  The repair of the old power supply was really cheap...

 

I'm going to send Manfred an email right away and ask if he can take care of it!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitterbug View Post

 

What I did was to ask Quad to cut off the old plug with a few cm of the old cable, and to make it into an adapter for the old PS2, so I can still have a setup that I can travel with- well, the good ol' PS2 is definitely travel-friendlier than the new QA that approximately weighs at least a ton (and is huge as well).

 

But at the same time, I am not sure if I actually ever want to listen to the old combo again... I found the difference in sound, precision, frequency range etc. so absurd in comparison, that I find it quite upsetting that the Float, until the release of the QA power supply, was doomed to play so far below the quality that it is actually capable of. Who knew? The QA power supply elevates a pair of great electrostatic headphones (with some awful limitations) to something totally else. It keeps all it's greatness and corrects all the limitations. The Floats with deep, natural bass? No more distortion in the high end? Yes. You have to hear it to believe it.

 

As I wrote before, there might be issues with vibration now, since it plays deeper than the frame was probably designed for. I described the rattling issues and what I did in an earlier post.

 

I am very curious to hear what you will have to say when you receive your new combo. Expect to be in for a treat... and oh my, what a treat it's going to be!!! :-D

post #463 of 663
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipsupt View Post

Hey, thanks for that!  I am going to ask them if they can do something similar.  

 

This way if I ever wanted to go ahead and buy the new Floats I could sell the old one with the old power supply. Brilliant!  

 

Worst case, at least I can do a comparison.  The repair of the old power supply was really cheap...

 

I'm going to send Manfred an email right away and ask if he can take care of it!

 

 

What was broken with yours? Mine has some issues too, especially the speaker/headphones switch is worn (or hasn't been used enough), so one has to switch back and forth several times to have both channels working. But I guess that's just an oxidation issue of the contacts. 

Actually, before I decided on the QA, I was in contact with Sowter in the UK to make me some custom transformers... but that would have been almost as expensive as the QA transformer box, and for that money, a tad too experimental I guess... 

post #464 of 663

On the subject of the QA transformer, I should say that mine has been working without any problems since being replaced. Which is good because even with a modest amplifier it still sounds quite impressive to me.

 

I need to find a better solution for storing the Float QA. I'd like to protect it from dust when not in use, so I've been using a plastic storage bin. It's a bit unsightly, so I would prefer to find a wooden box and line it with felt or foam.

post #465 of 663

I acquired a small flight case for  mine "ala-stax 007"

Briefcase Semi Flight Case (W/D/H): 353 x 318 x 182mm

Quote:

Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

On the subject of the QA transformer, I should say that mine has been working without any problems since being replaced. Which is good because even with a modest amplifier it still sounds quite impressive to me.

 

I need to find a better solution for storing the Float QA. I'd like to protect it from dust when not in use, so I've been using a plastic storage bin. It's a bit unsightly, so I would prefer to find a wooden box and line it with felt or foam.

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