Many of us in high end audio who have switched components, upgraded, or made certain small tweaks are aware of how these changes can potentially help or harm a system.
I am a computer Audio audiophile and I have a Mac Mini and BHSE driving my Stax headphones. Some of the tweaks and upgradesI have tried (keeping the same basic system) include using different transports from my Mac (Pure Music, Amarra, Fidelia, Itunes) to using contact paint (Xtreme Gold is fantastic).
I have been using Ridge Street Audio cables throughout my system for years as well as I feel they are the most NAKED of any cables I have ever heard at any price. Every time Robert comes out with a new IC, or USB cable, I am always pleasantly pleased with how that signal becomes cleaned up more and more. The grit always lifts a notch or two. When Robert told me to switch from my Macbook Pro as my source to a Mac Mini- more haze lifted once again. A few months ago I purchased a Power source for my Mac Mini from Mojo Audio to replace the cheap one that comes with the Mac Mini- and again- things cleaned up even more in addition to some other sonic magic.
After consulting with Larry Moore from Ultra-fi (maker of my DAC) and Robert from Ridge Street Audio- two friends who I very much hold by their musical tastes, I disconnected the RK50 volume attenuator in my BHSE. Both of them claimed the Alps RK50 circuit was muddling up the sound and that I would be better off with either a properly built passive amplifier or to control the volume digitally from the Mac itself. This is certainly the most inexpensive tweak I ever tried as I only had to pay my local technician about $50.00 to disconnect the volume control and replace it with a 50K resistor as instructed to me by Justin of Headamp.
To make a long story short, there is not one single tweak, upgrade, or component change I have EVER made at any price that removed the grit and haze and allowed the music to flow through than this simple inexpensive tweak. I am completely floored.
I have chosen for now to control the volume digitally from my Mac before deciding weather or not to go the passive amplifier route (which may or not be better).
I cannot highly enough recommend to those who are using computer audio to try this tweak. It is completely reversible if you cannot bear the ultra clean purity of your newly discovered audio library.
Good luck to my fellow head-fiers.
Edited by rsbrsvp - 4/18/13 at 5:03am