An old man finally succumbs to convenience
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Bob A (SD)

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I have eschewed the compressed music formats like MP3 from day one. The few times I listened I was struck by how tremendously inferior tracks sounded compared to my big bi-amped Magneplanar main stereo system or even my portable CDP/HeadRoom amp/Sennheiser cans kit.

My systems description

My qualified conversion started with my picking up a pair of Shure E2c canalphones for their sheer portability about 2 years ago. I would revert to these when packing my Senns didn't pass my sanity check. A few weeks ago I was in Sams picking up some needed household items when I spotted a display with some tiny Samsung MP3 players. Intrigued I conducted some web research when I got home. I was surprised at the feature set which included an FM tuner, voice recording, and even the ability to rip CDs direct without the need to employ my laptop computer. Reviews were universally positive. Mmmm.... The next day I figured what the heck and bought the YP-T6. Home I plugged in the E2cs and was very surprised at the quality of the FM reception. Next I grabbed a bunch of CDs and starting ripping them on my laptop for porting to the 512Mbs of memory this package smaller than a pack of stick gum packed. Gesh! I loaded 15 full CDs. More than enough for me!

Now the acid test. The E2Cs are not the be all and end all of canalphones by any stretch but they have served me very well. Switching the YP-T6 to the ripped CDs I'd installed I was happily surprised at the sound. I fiddled with the various EQ settings and the 3D sound capability settling on that which sounded best to me. Things were even better. Now weeks later I find that the quality of the sound from the YP-T6/E2c combination is not only satisfying, but pretty good. No, it isn't in the same league as my portable CDP/HeadRoom/Senn package but it is much closer than I would have ever thought. Technology has advanced since I had last sampled things.

So yeah, this late 50s old man has finally succumbed to the convenience of a couple of ounces of decent portable sound hardware that he never ever thought he'd be using.

Now that I've made that admission, if any of you reading this want to really hear what Redbook CDs are capable of in a good speaker stereo system, try to find someone who has a Kusunoki style filterless DAC in their system and audition the sound
You might just come to appreciate why we baby-boomers can't understand why you young folks are so satisfied with the compressed digital formats you download on the net. I've bought into the convenience obviously but not the adequacy of these MP3 type compressed formats for primary musical enjoyment. So that there is no misunderstanding, nothing comes close to matching the experience I get from my main stereo system with LP, Reel, Cassette, or CD format source material. But for extreme portability the YP-T6/E2c combo can't be sneezed at.

--Bob
 
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jpelg

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How are you ripping your CD's (software, bitrate, etc.)?
 
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Old Pa

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I've been in audio for only about five years more than you, which for my money puts us in about the same spot (my #1 system's current in my profile here). The balanced output of a Meridian G08 in a good system will also open some eyes (and ears) as to the musical content of well mastered redbook CDs. Recognizing that toys and technology are male essentials (
) and also two of the few reliefs of getting old, there certainly is much good in sampling the tech you mention when 1) somebody elese has paid for the R&D and 2) pricebreaks reach Sam's and Costco (your would like Costco). You thinking about trying out a small amp in your new portable system? In portable audio however, there are still two main limitations I keep running into: 1) current limitations of battery powered stuff, and 2) audio limitations of headphones using common ground designs.
 
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Bob A (SD)

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jpelg,

I'm not using anything fancy at all employing Windows Media Player 10 and Samsung Music Studio... WMA or MP3 @192k. Two reasons.... my prime music enjoyment is from the big stationary systems; and my lack of experience with other options for ripping CDs. Simply stated, I'm not dialed into the MP3, etc technology at all. I'm sure there are tweaks to get better musical reproduction from my YP-T6/E2C combo and I am open to any suggestions.

Old Pa,

I knew there were a few of us "older folks" here so it was great to see your post. I totally agree that extremely small portable equipment suffer from battery power limitations as well as the inherent compromises to be found in canalphones versus full sized cans. Those as well as the limitations of the highly compressed digital formats they play are what held me off for so long. As indicated in my opening post, I've accepted those compromises for the sake of convenience.

In Rapid City we only have Sams but I am familiar with Costco.

As for trying a small portable amp with the YP-T6/E2C no. I think that would defeat the purpose of having a 0.9 oz (w/o battery) player and like ultralight canalphones. My Headroom amp is available but it stays with the portable CDP.

Your comments about your MeridIan system echo mine. I wish more of the younger generation would take the time to truly listen to a decent system so that they would understand what they're missing by restricting themselves to iPods and Satellite radio
And they don't have to spend megabucks to hear quality either.



--Bob
 
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mr.karmalicious

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Wowsers, that is beautiful! About CD ripping, a quick google say that this player plays ogg! That's good. I (and just about everybody else here) reccomend EAC to rip your CDs. It's hard to setup, but the results are well worth it
.
 
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bigshot

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That's what my stereo used to look like! It's all ripped apart now... Now my stereo consists of three systems...

1) a rack with a preamp, equalizer and NR units connected to my Mac. All of the source components sit on the shelf until I need them to capture from...

2) a DVD/CD player connected to my amp, speakers and TV...

and 3) an iPod with portable speakers and headphones.

Whenever I want to listen to a R2R or an LP, I digitize it and burn a CD. It takes a little longer, but I'm working my way through my library. Everything gets backed in up in CD quality to DVD-Rs, which I can easily pop into my computer, load into iTunes and convert to AAC or MP3, or burn an audio CD off of. I'm constantly burning off CDs to listen to. They either end up in the trash eventually, or I give them to friends, because my master is the digital file on the DVD-R, not the CD itself.

Eventually, I'll have only CD quality digital copies of everything... no more warehouse full of records. I doubt if I will live long enough to get through all 10,000 records, but I'm sure having fun doing it.

See ya
Steve
 
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Bob A (SD)

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.karmalicious
Wowsers, that is beautiful! About CD ripping, a quick google say that this player plays ogg! That's good. I (and just about everybody else here) reccomend EAC to rip your CDs. It's hard to setup, but the results are well worth it
.



I found Exact Audio Copy v0.95 beta 2 plus Lame v3.97 to play with. What appears to be a very well documented tutorial can be found at EAC/Lame tutorial I'll give it a go... thanks
!!!

I also found Vorbis Tools but am not quite sure how or even if they can be used with EAC to rip into OGG format. Thoughts?

--Bob
 
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Bob A (SD)

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Steve,

I admire your efforts to archive your source collection. Me? Heck I sold off my mics a long time ago so I no longer record anything live... too much hassle carting everything around. Archiving everything I have would be a major undertaking in like spirit. I try to employ the KISS principle these days. And at this stage of my life I am content to listen to the original formats. I honestly believe that for me, were I to expend the effort to do what you're doing, I'd diminish my listening experience by being distratcted with handling the A to D conversions. That said if I were 30 years younger, heck yes I'd be protecting those tunes by archiving everything. Its funny how priorities change with age.

Best!

--Bob
 
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Old Pa

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Just a fast low res shot of System #1:

I was in Rapid last month (and at the Firehouse). Nice town when the tourists aren't in. I still think we have the best chance for reaching prospective 2 channel stereo loonies through forums like this.
 
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Bob A (SD)

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...and if at the Firehouse no doubt you partook of their microbrews


I came here after the 1993 BRAC closed the nuclear shipyard I worked at. Now where I work is again a BRAC target although I'm very close to retiring for the second time to "go play". LOL

You may be right about forums like this being venues where we can tempt our juniors to try "old fashioned" 2 channel sound.

How long have you been running those speakers?

--Bob

PS My avatar shows the portable CDP/Headroom/Senn rig
I also see from your profile that we share a love of reloading. I do have an age edge though ...1947


A bit different perspective:
 
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Old Pa

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob A (SD)
...and if at the Firehouse no doubt you partook of their microbrews



You mean they have a kitchen?
I thought they just had a bunch of violations of the SD child labor laws running pints around.

The B&Ws have been here for two years now. She Who Must Be Obeyed (hereinafter "SWMBO") noticed them right away. I had to explain that they were a substitute for good oral sex and that I would carry them both back to the store in one trip on my shoulders when that situation was remedied. They are still here and are bi-wired to the Bryston B14ST.

Would you be surprised that while in Rapid I also stopped in at H-S Precision? I've got a new bucket of .300WSM brass to "massage" while I wait for what the spaniels bought me.
I've only been reloading since '69 when I could first buy components.

Nice looking room (with a lot of memories); with a fire in the fireplace you would have my idea of an excellent video experience.
Everybody I know with Maggies is committed to them.
 
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Bob A (SD)

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Old Pa
You mean they have a kitchen?
I thought they just had a bunch of violations of the SD child labor laws running pints around.



hahahaha Yeah they actually do serve acceptable food there too.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Old Pa
The B&Ws have been here for two years now. She Who Must Be Obeyed (hereinafter "SWMBO") noticed them right away. I had to explain that they were a substitute for good oral sex and that I would carry them both back to the store in one trip on my shoulders when that situation was remedied. They are still here and are bi-wired to the Bryston B14ST.


The Nautilus speakers have always reflected the best attributes of avantgarde speaker designs. I can understand where they'd have a better WAF (even without the "explanation" you provided... hahahhaa) where my monolithic Maggies do not... ever... regardless of any explanation


Quote:

Originally Posted by Old Pa
Would you be surprised that while in Rapid I also stopped in at H-S Precision? I've got a new bucket of .300WSM brass to "massage" while I wait for what the spaniels bought me.
I've only been reloading since '69 when I could first buy components.



Not at all. Jack First (next door to H-S) moved out here the same time I did. He'd had it with Kalifornia. This area actually is something of a hotbed of the firearms industry with the likes of H-S, Jack First, Black Hills Ammo, Cor-Bon, Dakota Arms and many others within a 50 mile or so radius. And there's the Praire Dogs too with the Varmint Hunters Association headquartered in Pierre, SD. I've been handloading since my high school days when I started with the 30-30 and a precision variant of the Lee hand loader (I've forgotten the make/model).

Quote:

Originally Posted by Old Pa
Nice looking room (with a lot of memories); with a fire in the fireplace you would have my idea of an excellent video experience.
Everybody I know with Maggies is committed to them.



Thanks. Again no WAF here at all but it does work well for my relaxation. I have a home theater set up in another room for real video. And it is true about Maggie fans. I first heard the brand in the early 70s at a Berkley audio boutique while stationed on the west coast. They were the venerable Tympani IVs driven with Bryston electronics. I was hooked! But it took me many years to have sufficient space to properly deploy Maggie speakers justifying their acquisition... I haven't looked back since.

BTW that brick behind my speakers does for me what the acoustic foam tiles do for you behind your B&Ws.

--Bob
 
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KenW

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Nice!! I'd give anything to have my old reel to reel back along with my Yamaha and Nakamichi gear. Alas, everything is gone save a few old pieces.


Beautiful setup!

btw, I couldn't help but show my wife this shot as well as the other photos in this thread....especially the speakers as I've had that itch to do a nice speaker rig. Well, it didn't take long for our aesthetic differences to be revealed yet again. Heard some mumbling about "divorce"...."dead body"....of course, I'm not sure if the dead body was hers or mine! I'm betting mine.


Heck, father's day is upon us. What's wrong with dad getting a nice speaker setup?? He deserves it....doesn't he...er....don't I??
 
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Old Pa

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob A (SD)
Jack First (next door to H-S) moved out here the same time I did. He'd had it with Kalifornia. This area actually is something of a hotbed of the firearms industry with the likes of H-S, Jack First, Black Hills Ammo, Cor-Bon, Dakota Arms and many others within a 50 mile or so radius. And there's the Praire Dogs too with the Varmint Hunters Association headquartered in Pierre, SD. I've been handloading since my high school days when I started with the 30-30 and a precision variant of the Lee hand loader (I've forgotten the make/model).

BTW that brick behind my speakers does for me what the acoustic foam tiles do for you behind your B&Ws.



I've sort of found Jack's place a hostile environment without good prices; I prefer the place a block west of the Firehouse on the other side of the street.

The trip originally was for prairie poodles, but took a turn south when my pal, a retired IL state police MSGT from their weapons section got called back on a family emergency. I first started reloading for a Rem 700 introduced in '68 in .25-06; pretty much had to reload to make the most of it and then, well, I was hooked. Come for the price, you'll stay for the control.


I was enamored with the 801 Matrixes when they came out in the early 80's and could do nothing until a couple years ago about the B&W itch. I think I'll be set for a while now.

Some people put mirrors on the back wall to make the room look bigger; sonex goes on my back wall to make the room "hear" bigger.
 
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bigshot

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BobA,

I have no choice about going digital.

My personal specialty is 78s. I have no way of counting, but my estimate is that I have over 6,000 78s (along with at least 5,000 LPs, 3,000 CDs, etc...) I live in a one bedroom apartment, so you can imagine the problem with storage. A couple of friends and I went together and got a small warehouse space in a nearby industrial district. It's carpeted and has air conditioning, so it's a nice little office too.

Now, I have all my classical 78s up on racks where I can find them and sort them out by composer. I'm like a pig in mud. But my brother has warned me that I'm not allowed to die until I get rid of all my records. He doesn't want to have to do that after I'm gone. So, to make him happy, I'm questing after the impossible... converting everything to pure digital.

It's actually a lot of fun. I've developed some amazing techniques for restoring sound on 78s and LPs. When I'm done, I would much rather listen to my digital copy than the original. And I'm archiving all the raw transfers, so if I get better restoration tools in the future, I can always go back and re-restore stuff, even if I don't have the original disk any more.

Yes, I am crazy. But I'm having fun.

By the way, for those considering getting a reel to reel, I would recommend the 4 channel Akai models with the glass and ferrite heads. The heads on these decks never wear out. As good as they are, it can be hard to get Teacs serviced any more. And with four channels, you can play just about any kind of tape out there... even the full tracks.

See ya
Steve
 
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