What source upgrade should I go to to reduce sibilance?
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Murdoch

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Currently using a NAD 521i cdp.

Would an upgrade to the 541i make a difference?
 
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tom hankins

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I have not heard your model of NAD, but have heard others. It looks to me (and I'm wrong alot) that your whole system leans towards the bright and harsh side of life. Not sure about the cables, but the Creek I had was a little rough and most of the Grados I've had or heard tend to be that way also. Is it an overall brightness you are hearing? Or just certain recordings.
I've never heard your system so I'm guessing here, but it looks like it could get how your describing.
 
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Murdoch

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Ironically the sibilance is not so bad with the grados, I'm sure on account of the flats. The sibilance is at its worst with the AGK k240s!

I have about 2 more weeks before my 30 day exchange offer expires on the 521i. I could afford either the 541i or a Cambridge Audio Azur 540
 
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prisoner #6

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Hey Murdoch--

Should you decide to take the plunge, I noticed that Saturday Audio (www.saturdayaudio.com) has the 541i for $299. Not a bad deal, I'd say.
 
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Murdoch

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It seems that the combination of the OBH-11 with its slightly exaggerated lows and highs, in combination with my NAD 521i with ITS slightly exggerated highs is causing the problem. Luckily I can return the 521i, and go back to using the <$100 dvd player I was using (which has a popping problem after 2 hours of use, but that's another story...
). That will help slightly. But now that my attention has been called to the problem, I still notice the sibilance that is still there with my cheap dvd player though.

I'm in contact with Creek Audio to see if they can help me with repalcing the obh-11 with a less sibilant model, since the amp is only two months old. I'll report back on how good Creek's assistance was.

Now what to do with my credit at my local audio shop... I think perhaps an upgrade to the sr-225 might be in order!


All kidding aside though, this bites! Is this murphy's law or what!
 
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prisoner #6

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It's strange that you find the sibilance to be such a problem. I've got a Cambridge D300, which is supposed to have similar characteristics to the NAD 521i, and I don't find the highs too harsh at all with my OBH-11. I can listen for hours without getting fatigued. Maybe the slightly rolled-off treble of my HD580s mates well with the OBH-11 in this respect.

Could the Kimber ICs be causing part of the problem, perhaps? I've heard Kimber's cables have a tendency to be rather detailed in the treble region.
 
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Murdoch

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Yeah, I bet the problem is lessened with higher impedance cans. Plus, I wouldn't be surprised if the less forward nature of the hd580 (which I auditioned for a couple of days) would de-emphasize any up front annoyances. With the grados every little detail is brought front and center.

Just to be clear, the problem is not with fatigue or noise, but with sibilance. Any "t", "th", "s" or "sh" sound is emphasized.

I thought the cables might be a cause, but it turns out they are not the problem. I did a comparison test.
 
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eyeteeth

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Murdoch
Just to be clear, the problem is not with fatigue or noise, but with sibilance. Any "t", "th", "s" or "sh" sound is emphasized..


I'm not sure if it helps but I was very critical of my quite warm sounding Arcam CD73 regarding sibilance of cymbals, especially the high-hat. And eventually by accident realized that the recordings (redbook) themselves I was listening to were the true culprits. Very good recordings showed me that the equipment was ok.
 
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fewtch

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Quote:

Originally Posted by prisoner #6
It's strange that you find the sibilance to be such a problem. I've got a Cambridge D300, which is supposed to have similar characteristics to the NAD 521i, and I don't find the highs too harsh at all with my OBH-11. I can listen for hours without getting fatigued. Maybe the slightly rolled-off treble of my HD580s mates well with the OBH-11 in this respect.


You could play back a recording of a buzz-saw through HD580s and it wouldn't sound the slightest bit harsh...
I've tried my HD580s with sources that would rattle the fillings out of your teeth with other cans, and they still remained smooth enough (thanks to the treble characteristics of the cans).

P.S. to Murdoch... I'd definitely look into an amp swap first, just my 2c.
 
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