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View Full Version : the KKF audio thread!



EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 12:07 AM
it's been my experience that audio gear overlaps with kitchen knives (me myself, i run an audio forum with a fairly active kitchen knife culture!). what gear are you running at home, and what music do you like?

i have an Audio Aero Capitole Mk II CD player/DAC going to an Odyssey Stratos SE amplifier running a pair of Thiel CS 2.4s. i'm mainly into classical and jazz, though i used to be obsessed with Bjork and David Sylvian. i used to be a headphone crazy (my last headphone rig was the same CD player running to a Singlepower MPX3 Single triad headphone amp with a pair of Grado HP-2 headphones). i don't use headphones on the go since i started suffering from tinnitus (one loud concert too many), so music has become something at home only that i really deeply listen to.

UglyJoe
06-29-2011, 12:15 AM
Wow, that's a hell of a set of cans. Never got to hear a set of Joe Grado's works. Singlepower...meh, not a fan of the guy who runs (used to run, maybe?) that company. Everyone says they make good sounding amps though. I was into the DIY headphone audio scene for a while.... just too darned expensive, makes knife hobby look like collecting matchbox cars... and a full system makes headphone hobby look like collecting frisbees.

EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 12:18 AM
the Joe Grados were amazing, but they are starting to degrade. Joe is taking advantage by selling refurbishment for a couple grand. they ain't worth that (the Thiel CS2.4 speakers are way better than the HP-2s ever were, for less than $3k used). Mikhail was a screw up, but his amps sure sounded good then they worked! do you know head-case? i'm the same ER...

UglyJoe
06-29-2011, 12:24 AM
Yeah, Mikhail was a tool. I actually saw a guy gut and rebuild one of the singlepower amps. Obviously never heard the results, but man did the guts on that thing look much nicer. I was never on headcase. Spent a good bit of time on the DIY audio forums of head-fi and headwize a few years back. Actually never got on headcase at all, how old is that forum? Didn't even know it existed, and that's odd. Most of these forum based communities have some cross referencing going on... Anyway, I got a set of Grado HF-2 (the second head-fi limited edition model) and promptly stopped listening to headphones - not because of the headphones, just because I stopped having time. Have since sold off most of my equipment for the knife hobby, but I still have those cans. Really nice sounding for $500.

EDIT: just had a glance at the head-case diy forum and saw a lot of names I recognized. Dr. Gilmore, nikongod, n_maher, a lot of others. Might join up to talk to those guys again. Something about head-fi really turned me off there a couple years ago, and I'm still not sure what.

EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 12:28 AM
my partner and i (it's a completely non-commerical site) started head-case (www.head-case.org) in 2006, in reaction to head-fi becoming more and more commercialized. the main DIY forum moved to head-case soon after, and all of the head-fi national meets after 2008 have really been head-case meets, in terms of how they were organized.

yeah, the HF-2s were decent enough. speakers are where it's at, though. unlike most of my hobbies, i spent as much money as possible with the speakers, and haven't felt like i needed to upgrade since. i think it's the way to go.

UglyJoe
06-29-2011, 12:41 AM
Damn, has it been that long since I stopped looking at headphone forums? It must be so, because I would have known of a quasi-defection from head-fi. Like I said, a lot of the stuff at head-fi kind of drove me away from the headphone world, plus I just wasn't listening as much as I did before that...

Wow, I'm feeling old.

EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 12:43 AM
the things driving people away from head-fi is what i started head-case. no big deal. you might even be forgiven if you visited head-case and thought it was a high end booze forum ;)

rahimlee54
06-29-2011, 06:07 AM
I have a set of Salk HT2-TLs for 2 channel driven by a AVA 550 EX. I use my pioneer AVR as a preamp and a squeezebox as the source. I need to get a dedicated 2 channel pre amp at some point, but I just shelled out for a matching center channel and I am probably done with audio for the year. At the computer I just use some Senn HD555 I got really cheap on sale with rebate a couple years ago. I need to upgrade, but I so rarely listen to music in here it would seem like a waste.

How do you like the stratos amps? I was thinking about them at one point then found a smoking deal on the used amp I bought.

stereo.pete
06-29-2011, 08:12 AM
Great topic! I have a pair of Mirage M3-Si's driven by an Odyssey Audio Stratos Extreme SE. My preamp is an Odyssey Audio Candella with 1950's RCA cleartop tubes and my source is a Macbook hooked up via usb to a DB Labs USB DAC. Unfortunately the goofy power in my house has knocked out my Odyssey Stratos so I will have to drive to Indy and drop it off for repair as I do not feel like shipping a 70lb amp. For headphones I have a pair of Bose over the hears that I picked up at work.

mano
06-29-2011, 08:27 AM
Had Thiel 2.2, Aragon 4004 Mk II and Sonic Frontiers SFL-1 Preamplifier. Forget the CD player and wires but the latter were a mishmash of high-end silver and pure copper that were all the rage in the 1990's.

Due to two different medical issues I lost all hearing in one ear and 60% in the other so everything was sold.

Still have a pair of bi-wired Musical Fidelity MC-4's (naked, without the ugly grills) for video surround sound and people like them.

Most important to me now is the music itself but I really miss excellent imaging, dynamics and the visceral thrill of great music on a great system.

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-29-2011, 01:45 PM
I have always had a foot in the door for audio equipment, but never take the full jump. Had a full surround of Mirage M9's but they got stolen. When I moved to Colorado a year ago, bought a pair of Sonus Faber Concerto Domus, a Pioneer Elite SC-25 and Velodyne 12" sub (regret it, get enough bass from the towers). I really want to get into tube amps, but money flow is directed at other priorities at the moment.

cnochef
06-29-2011, 02:00 PM
Had to go Canadian:

Amp: NAD C326BEE
CD: NAD C545BEE
Speakers: Totem Mites

This is a mid-priced system (about $1500 all in) for my small living room, that produces collosal sound.

Jay
06-29-2011, 04:41 PM
Odyssey Audio Stratos Extreme SE. My preamp is an Odyssey Audio Candella with 1950's RCA cleartop tubes.

What an incredible bargain those Odyssey Audio products were. Do they still make them?

Magnepan 1.7qr, REL Stadium, VTL, MSD, Rotel, Magnum Dynalab, Goertz.

EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 05:24 PM
the Odyssey products are still made. in fact, they have started making higher end, expensive items, in edition to the fantastic bang for the buck stuff they are mostly known for.

WildBoar
06-29-2011, 05:37 PM
My stuff is all pretty dated now. Audible Illusions 2b preamp I bought use ~1987, McCormick amp I bought used ~15 years ago (just crapped out last week -- it's right at the 20 year warranty expiration point :) ), Von Schweikert VR3s (I think -- the smaller of the two towers) I bought new ~14 years ago, and a B&O TT I bought new ~1985. CD player is pretty new (~ 6 years old), budget player from one of the uber $$ makers...

Interconnects and speaker wires are old pretty low- to mid-budget. Got an old Nak tape deck that needs cleaning and realignment on of these years...

EdipisReks
06-29-2011, 05:40 PM
i bet that's a nice system. all of my cables are self-made from commodity cabling (belden, etc).

WildBoar
06-29-2011, 05:45 PM
I really like it, but the speakers are too big for the room they are in. And I was outvoted in my campaign to move the system into the family room we just added (1 vote yes, and wife's vote NO! :) )

panda
01-29-2016, 03:56 PM
just got harman kardon soundsticks iii for use on a desk with a laptop. does not take up much space and they sound pretty decent for being tiny footprint pc speakers. bass knob on low with a sock stuffed in the port though.

WildBoar
01-29-2016, 04:02 PM
A sock? Clean or dirty? Cotton? rayon? Tube or dress? Liquid fabric softener or dryer sheets? Concentrated washer detergent or regular strength? For Dog's sake man, we need to know the particulars -- it's the details that matter in audio! :D

panda
01-29-2016, 04:04 PM
dirty fuzzy one, no detergent or softener straight up.

Andrew
01-29-2016, 05:50 PM
I love threads like this, meaning cross hobby threads on the various geek boards... Just don't read about knives on badger and board, or wine suggestions on audiogon!

I have pretty solid two chanel system I like: simm/moon 340i integrated amp, moon 110 vinyl pre, rega RP6 table, plus streaming into the on board dac on the 340i- run through ProAc studio 140 mkIIs. Sounds good to me!

lobby
09-02-2016, 10:03 PM
Here's my humble older system.

Magnepans mg 1.4
Bryston power and pre
Rotel phono pre
Technics ****** turn table

http://img.fae.ro/133c7c.jpeg

Talim
09-03-2016, 05:28 AM
Mk

JaVa
09-03-2016, 06:24 AM
Nothing fancy, but I'm really happy with the set up i have and it has some design qualities too that keeps the wife happy. A pair of Bowers & Wilkins CM1:s, B&W PV1 sphere sub, Cambridge Audio Azur 640R, Cambridge Audio DVD89 (sacd and audio dvd player) and cables by Tara Labs.

I down graded from a more substantial set about 8 years ago. I went for a lighter set up that would fit better to our living room and would work well for stereo listening and for home theater use too, but then two years ago decided to sell the center speaker and back speakers. So in the end I ended up with this stuff.

JBroida
09-03-2016, 05:11 PM
i've gone the CIEM route and have some custom art harmony 8 pros that are getting upgraded to the 8.2's, along with some pro330v2's that were just remolded in acrylic (used to be silicone).

Eric
09-03-2016, 08:42 PM
cIEM? I'm old school. Conrad Johnson CAV 50 int amp, Ayre dac, Harbeth compact 7, rega cd.

JBroida
09-03-2016, 09:50 PM
cIEM? I'm old school. Conrad Johnson CAV 50 int amp, Ayre dac, Harbeth compact 7, rega cd.

Custom molded IEM's (in ear monitors)... Essentially, custom fit fancy earbuds

spoiledbroth
09-04-2016, 12:24 AM
Monitoring: impossible with headohones. False advertising!!

DamageInc
09-04-2016, 02:43 AM
For home, I have a pair of Audeze LCD-2 headphones driven by a Schiit Lyr with 1969 Amperex Golden Globe tubes. Input from an ASUS Xonar Essence ST soundcard from my PC. My speakers are TDL Reference Standard which have been painted British racing green. To drive them, I have two Mark Levinson 436 monoblocks.

When I am out and about, I have a pair of Denon AH-D7100 headphones. Considering upgrading to Audeze EL-8 closed back.

KimBronnum
09-04-2016, 03:52 AM
[emoji15] I don't understand most of what I read in this threat. I thought there was a rule only to get totally absorbed by ONE hobby at a time.

DamageInc
09-04-2016, 06:16 AM
[emoji15] I don't understand most of what I read in this threat. I thought there was a rule only to get totally absorbed by ONE hobby at a time.

Man, I can't stick to just one thing. I'm involved in cooking, knives, Danish furniture, PC building, audio, film, whisky, beer, shoes, watches, literature, coats & jackets, etc. It's a mania. I can't stop myself.

Mucho Bocho
09-04-2016, 08:55 AM
Man, I can't stick to just one thing. I'm involved in cooking, knives, Danish furniture, PC building, audio, film, whisky, beer, shoes, watches, literature, coats & jackets, etc. It's a mania. I can't stop myself.

Sounds like you don't have children.

LifeByA1000Cuts
09-04-2016, 09:13 AM
Well is there somebody here who didn't get into knives via the hobby of cooking (knifemakers and pro cooks excepted), as in somebody that collects/appreciates kitchen knives without cooking a lot (or who focuses on less cutting-intensive cuisine)?

Mucho Bocho
09-04-2016, 09:50 AM
Well is there somebody here who didn't get into knives via the hobby of cooking (knifemakers and pro cooks excepted), as in somebody that collects/appreciates kitchen knives without cooking a lot (or who focuses on less cutting-intensive cuisine)?

Life, Collecting knives just to look at and fondle is totally legal around here. Know you're not alone. I have a wall full of my conquest and take every moment i can to just stair in amazement at my utilitarian handcrafted art objects.

DamageInc
09-04-2016, 10:14 AM
Sounds like you don't have children.

Yes.

KimBronnum
09-04-2016, 10:18 AM
Well, OK, I didn't consider cooking a different hobby - as mentioned above it kind of comes hand in hand with the knife/stone collecting. And YES, Damage... you definately sound like you dont have children 🤓

DamageInc
09-04-2016, 10:43 AM
Yeah, no kids, no wife. I'm basically a large child.

KimBronnum
09-04-2016, 12:03 PM
🤓[emoji106] enjoying yourself.

LifeByA1000Cuts
09-04-2016, 02:26 PM
@Mucho you guessed wrong, knives are still mostly part of a cooking hobby for me. And didn't plan to disrespect other collector types, just found it hard to imagine... i'm more the "steak? but it doesn't need spending an hour burying my counter in a mise that looks like it has been stolen out of a wok bar, so what's the point?" kind.

Mucho Bocho
09-04-2016, 03:21 PM
@Mucho you guessed wrong, knives are still mostly part of a cooking hobby for me. And didn't plan to disrespect other collector types, just found it hard to imagine... i'm more the "steak? but it doesn't need spending an hour burying my counter in a mise that looks like it has been stolen out of a wok bar, so what's the point?" kind.

I know there's a point you're trying to make? Sometimes I think you should change your username to Life by 1000 words per post. Just messin. [emoji57]

WildBoar
09-04-2016, 04:20 PM
There are a couple of people around KKF who are definitely into the collecting aspect, and not into cooking. And they have some very nice knives. But I have seen that they generously lend them to others so the knives do in fact get used as intended.

Matus
09-04-2016, 04:58 PM
My car has 8 speakers and can get really loud ... does that count? :O

Seriously, I would love to get my hands on some really nice audio setup. I know little about them other than it is really an expensive hobby, so I rather keep my fingers off it. Man can only have that many expensive hobbies before first divorce ... :D

WildBoar
09-04-2016, 08:34 PM
It is much harder to have all of the hobbies AFTER the first divorce due to diminished funds.

JBroida
09-04-2016, 08:54 PM
My car has 8 speakers and can get really loud ... does that count? :O

Seriously, I would love to get my hands on some really nice audio setup. I know little about them other than it is really an expensive hobby, so I rather keep my fingers off it. Man can only have that many expensive hobbies before first divorce ... :D

my headphones have 8 speakers in each ear :P

https://scontent-lax3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/t31.0-8/1462632_909567862497369_2842649317036233289_o.jpg

ynot1985
09-04-2016, 09:28 PM
nice.. custom IEMs..

wish I can afford one of those...


my headphones have 8 speakers in each ear :P

https://scontent-lax3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/t31.0-8/1462632_909567862497369_2842649317036233289_o.jpg

Matus
09-05-2016, 01:44 AM
my headphones have 8 speakers in each ear :P

I am not even going to ask how many spekaers does your car have :)

panda
09-05-2016, 07:45 PM
speaking of headphones, i just discovered a truly great set of earbuds (not in ear). blue ever blue 328r (http://blueeverblue.com/product_model_328.html) they're only $30 and sound excellent! they're not refined hi-fi or anything, but high vocal clarity and lack of distortion for fatigue free listening make them bang/buck stand outs. they're quite comfortable as well. the only knock is that the cable is flimsy. bass goes deep and you can actually hear the notes, not just a buzz and fart. the EQ is pretty neutral, mids stand out a little bit because midbass has a slight dip.

zetieum
09-05-2016, 08:43 PM
Amp: NAIM Nait 5i
CD: NAD C565BEE
Speakers: FEF Q900

zetieum
09-05-2016, 08:59 PM
Sounds like you don't have children.

I am happy of my super nice audio system. Obviously I bought that *before* my first child. Since, when the kids finally fall asleep I enjoy a lot the silence. I am looking forward for the smaller to be a bit older so that I can listen again to some music....
still I managed to make my older on fell in love with peter and the wolf, and the carnival of the animals. I use some jazz lullaby on my younger one (Nina, Ella, Billy). I use the bolero (Ravel) for him to discover the instruments. Finally I cherry pick some part of operas that are easy in languages he understands, i.e. french or german (Papageno in the zauberflöte, torero in Carmen, few funny ones from Offenbach). All that makes it much better than 6 months ago in term of listening to good music.

Mucho Bocho
09-05-2016, 09:35 PM
Zet, I'm still enjoying my 6.1 NAD Mirage Velodyne acoustically optimized room with home made Eichman interconnects Furman line conditioners and Blue Pillow sound dampner's still ten years after the build.