This is by way of opening up a thread for personal introductions. Some of us discussed writing introductions as a fun way to get to know each other on a more personal level. Also, this could help defuse some of the knee-jerk reactions on future threads:
The rules so far:
1. You post about your music experience, your audio experience, what drives you in this hobby, what brings you to Slim Devices, etc.
2. You post about your current, past, and future (hopefully!) rigs. Discuss your room, speaker placement, cables, whatever.
3. Say something about your audio philosophy. For example, do you believe in blind testing or not? Why?
4. Say something about what brings you to the forum and what you hope to get out of it.
5. No one -- absolutely NO ONE -- is allowed to flame, diss, nag, or anything of this sort in this thread. This is NEUTRAL GROUND. Okay? If you don't like what somebody says, that is fine; feel free to take it up on ANOTHER thread. We will ask SD to make this a sticky.
Results 1 to 10 of 53
2006-11-29, 10:17 #1
- Join Date
- Nov 2005
Personal Introductions: Please Make This a Sticky!
Last edited by highdudgeon; 2006-11-30 at 07:08. Reason: typo
2006-11-29, 10:42 #2
Well I seem to be first on the list
My current set-up is in my signature. I'm not a professional at anything music- or hi-fi-related, although did work in a high-end dealer many years ago.
I'm here as I got an SB3 - I used the forum to find out stuff pre-purchase, and quite liked some of the arguments we had. The smaller community is nice compared to some very large audio ones.
My audio philosophy is very much on the subjective side. I believe that we have not found out everything we can measure, and that our ears are more sensitive than any other measuring equipment. I don't believe double-blind A-B testing is the be-all as I change into a werewolf the third time I hear a song in a row, although it can be useful. I find that I need to live with stuff for quite a while before deciding what I really think. This approach is despite a science-based degree - I think it is good science to keep an open mind at all times.
I subscribe fully to the low power single-ended triode valve amp plus high-efficiency speaker route - I just prefer the sound - it sounds more like real music to me. My system sounds incredibly good and I don't envisage a change to the CD/amp/speakers for many years. I found the stock SB3 lacking, but it's getting OK now with an external DAC; I may do more tweaking.
I listen mostly to classical, folk and world music. I go to at least one classical/opera concert a week, and see folk or world music about 5-10 times a year. I spend much more on live music than on recorded/hi-fi!
Values-wise, I'm very left-wing, liberal (in European terms) and love theoretical discussions - pontificating, really. I like to discuss people's values and philosophy on life, as demonstrated in some of the threads I have started (comparing audiophilia with both science and religion, for example). I will happily search for inconsistencies in your value system - please don't take it personally, and I'm more than happy for you to do the same to me!
Finally I love having equipment that is named after me. Sean should give me a Transporter just so I can have another Slim device remote
Last edited by adamslim; 2006-11-30 at 06:35. Reason: change is good - we should welcome changeSB3 just a wifi bridge and clock now :)
Boom x 2, Radio
2006-11-29, 10:47 #3
- Join Date
- Nov 2005
Really, because I love opera and it is a wonderfully archaic word. Think of Wotan skulking across the sage, dragging a spear, wearing a hat with pointy horns, and actually trying to be serious and indignant. Anyway, it is a word I like.
My name is George. As a disclaimer, I am very pround to be a Slim Devices retailer.
My immediate plans, in fact, are to carry this business to Europe and to help place SD products with high-end dealers in central and southern Europe. I am moving to Italy (the Venetto) with my family, where my wife will practice medicine at a hospital in Vicenza, some 45 miles from Venice. We have already been there this fall on a house-hunting mission and I had a wonderful time demonstrating the Transporter on a system that included Sonus Faber Stradivarius speakers. Awesome.
I am in my early forties. My educational background is in history and physics, at the graduate level, but fortune (in the sense of accident) led my to the IT industry in my lates 20s. This allowed me to upgrade my first "serious" system -- on a college student's budget -- which consisted of a Thorens 'table, NAD integrated amp, Nakamichi tape deck (remember those?), and B&W bookshelf speakers. The next move up was to an ARC D-100 amp, ARC SP9 Mk II preamp (marvelous device), I suddenly can't remember the CD player, and Canton speakers.
I've been interested in audio from an early age, being an avid music collector, musician, and lover of live music. I had been exposed to some excellent systems in my youth. My bought my first system with savings from a summer job after my freshman year in college. From there, it was a slippery slope.
Tubes (Quad, ARC, McIntosh, Cary), solid state (Plinius, NAD, ARC, McIntosh, Bel Canto -- twice -- Nuforce, Bryston, Carver, and probably a few others); electrostatics, floorstanders, monitors; CD players, universal players, SB3, Transporter. Expensive cables (Acoustic Zen Satoris, Oval 9's,s etc.) and inexpensive cables (Blue Jeans Cables now, and Apogee Wyde Eyed for digital...I guess that's not so cheap). EQ devices (Rane, Behringer, Z-Systems). Various DACs.
Probably the most expensive system I have had in my house was the following: Harbeth Monitor 40s (incidentally, among the handful of very best amps I have ever heard, at any price), McIntosh MC-501s (a vanity purchase; I traded down); Squeeze Box 3 and Lavry DA10.
I should add that I am interested in the aesthetics -- the physical aesthetics -- of audio equipment. And why not? Designers put a lot of time into product development. Some people (my family, for one) put a lot of time into decor. The two should match. I am more than willing to give up 2-5% of sound if I'm getting something that I know my family can live with for a long time, something that we find pleasing, well-made, attractive, and interesting. Honestly, I think the Transporter falls into that category. I've had a geeky SB3+DAC set up for months and couldn't stand the sight of it. Now, even my wife thinks the Transporter is handsome and on the level of my Electrocompaniet mono blocs (recently sold) and Bel Canto mono blocs (recently brought home). Visuals are important to me.
Because of our move, large speakers are not an option -- my new room is too small. I have "downgraded" to Harbeth Monitor 30s, backed up by the same ACI Force subs. The subs are in the corders and the speakers are set up per Allison rules. I am running a Transporter directly into a paid of Bel Canto Ref 1000. The Bel Cantos replaced the Nuforces...I just had too many issues with that company and have had problems with the things. The BC's are probably 99% as good as any amp needs to be. They're up there with the MC-402. The MC-402 sounds exactly like the MC-501s. Stereophile compared the MC-501s to $30K+ Halcros as being pretty much the same. Why a switching amp? Because they are small and runn on US and European voltage. Ditto for the Transporter! Plug for Audio Concepts: they will retrofit the amps on my subs for 220/240 for free.
Anyway, this is hardly the best system on the planet and, thanks to the very wonderful but admittedly small monitors, it lacks the body of a system with true full-range speakers (of comparable quality, of course).
My rule of thumb is to spend more money on tickets to live music and on CDs than I do home audio. To begin with, I have two small children and, quite honestly, my listening time at home is limited (somehow, they have yet to damage anything...that amazes me every day).
Having gone through as much equipment as I have, knowing as my audiophiles as I do, and having a background in the sciences (I was even managing editor of a psychology journal whilst in grad school...managing as in I did all the dirty work for the academic editor) leads me to believe in the value of double-blind testing. You need to work with one or more friends or family members to do this, of course. Ideally, you should have a few listeners, too, but that is not necessary. I don't do this all the time, of course, but it is fun to do. Educational, too. On the other hand, I am very much a subjectivist, too. This is about enjoyment, right? I really dig and believe in fine solid state amps for their accuracy. However, I have a pair of McIntosh MC-275s. They are NOT on the same level of accuracy as an SS amp and you can immediately hear this. They are wonderfully warm and rich, though, and I love them for that. My reasons are purely emotional.
Above all, my philosophy is simply to have fun, enjoy the hobby, and remember that it is all about enjoying music. That is why I enjoy the Sb3 and Transporter so much and why I believe in Slim Devices. Their products heighten my ability to enjoy music in a way that suits my technical interests and basic desires: it is flexible, open-source (I'm waiting for Inguz for Mac!), and allows unlimited access to my music collection while reproducing it with uncompromised quality. I just think these guys are smart as hell and on the bleeding edge. This is not marketing hype; this is how I feel.
Last edited by highdudgeon; 2006-11-29 at 15:14. Reason: typo
2006-11-29, 13:09 #4
Hi, my name is Rob, and I'm an alcho er audiophile. I played trumpet for a long time, and for the past year or two have been dabbling in guitar, but I wouldnt call myself a musician. I got my start listening to LPs of Cream or Pink Floyd or Clapton, in a garage with a bunch of other high schoolers. Solder smoke mixed with other smoke, wafted along on air vibrated by the best stereo in town, thanks to my geeky best friend. He was always building some Heathkit thing or another. Later tended equipment and did the mix for a couple of minor recording bands. This got me fascinated with how an amp or PA might have a particular emotional impact and why. Thats what drives me in audio. I think of it as the intersection of the technological with the psychological. It lends itself to a sort of endless noble quest.
Once I got out of college and grad school, I finally had enough money to buy a decent rig: Magnepan II's and Audio Research electronics. Since then I've owned alot of different things. In speakers: Klipsch Cornwalls, Quad 989s, Spendor monitors, Quad ESLs, Martin Logan Sequel IIs, Carver Amazings, a pair of small Maggies, Advent Large, JSE "Infinite Slope", Mordaunt-Short monitors. My current main speakers are a pair of Vandersteen 5As. In electronics I have had a variety as well: Home-built Tripath Digitals, McIntosh both classic and new, Classe, EAR 859, various Audio Research, Conrad-Johnson. When I get back to Montana I will be rotating out McIntosh and putting in Quicksilver mono-blocks. Why am I now involved with Slim Devices? I think its the future. Once you use hard-drive based audio its hard not to think the days of discs are numbered.
My philosophy in audio is probably a bit different. I have given up trying to find accuracy or fidelity to live music. I am just in it for the emotional high that a great system playing great music can bring. And over the years, I have come to the conclusion there are many ways to get there. In fact, I often have three systems set up. So when I get back to Montana, I plan on setting up a couple of other rigs in addition to the Vandersteen-Quicksilver system that will be fed via Transporter. Quad ESLs and a pair of ancient tube monos will be fed by an SB3 in the bedroom. In the office I plan on setting up Spendors with a Tripath digital amp fed from the computer via USB DAC.
As for the objective-subjective debate. I can remember a time before "Total Harmonic Distortion" was used and before anyone had heard of this thing called "jitter". So I dont think measurements via instruments are anywhere near close to comprehensively describing audio reality. Nor do I think ABX testing is the holy grail. Its my experience that it takes time to really hear and appreciate. I readily embrace the fact that there is a big psychological, perceptual component and I'm not sure how you control for all that without destroying what you are trying to measure. But, being schooled in the social sciences, I know there are ways to tease out objective measures for that which is wholistic and subjective. If and when that happens, we can all live in peace, as the subjective and the objective will have been reconciled.Modded Duet to Modded Tact Mini to Modded Tact S2150 to Vandersteen Model 5As. SB3 to Quad Tube Preamp to Modded Quad 303 to Quad ESLs. Homemade Tripath Digital amp to Original Carver ALS Speakers with Outboard Crossovers.
2006-11-29, 14:33 #5
I'll play. My name is - well, my name is what you see so no need to explain that one . I've been tracking the squeezebox for a while and only got into it a month or so ago. Experience wise - I'm a bit of a 'muso' having played in many bands over the years. Not really an audiophile - and tend to be a bit bewildered over discussions about cables and DACs and power supply replacements etc. I do appreciate good audio quality though, and have a fairly good studio environment that I have spent a lot of time and money getting to my liking.
The thing that keeps me here though is the excellent design of the Slimdevices devices... A really excellent way of listening to my music, and has supplanted my CD collection. Really enjoying Squeezenetwork too - Pandora is just excellent .
2006-11-29, 14:37 #6
- Join Date
- Jun 2005
- Northern NJ
Ok, I'll play!
My name is Phil, and I'm an audio dealer located in Northern NJ. My screen name is PhilNYC because I used to live in NYC, and I didn't feel like changing my name to PhilNJ on the dozen or so audio forums I've participated on past and present.
I first started here on the SD forum as a happy SB2 customer. Became a SD retailer when the Transporter was announced, because I anticipated that it would be a network music server product that would finally perform at a high end audio level, and it has not disappointed.
I'm what you call a "home-based" dealer; I operate my dealership out of my home. I've been in business for about 4 years, and I only sell gear that I want to own for myself. That said, I have over 1000sqft of dedicated demo space, with 4 systems available for demo:
1 - Reference System: Focus Audio FS888 speakers, Blue Circle BC3000mkII GzPZ preamp, BC206 hybrid amplifier, Dodson DA-218 DAC and SD Transporter (also an Oracle CD1000 for folks who bring their own CDs to listen to).
2 - Tube System: Focus Audio FS-78SE speakers, Cayin A70T tube integrated amp, Cayin CDT-17A cd player.
3 - AV System: Acoustic Zen Adagio speakers, Bel Canto ref1000 monoblock amps, DAC3 DAC, modified Sony S7700 DVD player, Panasonic 50" plasma.
4 - Office system: Focus Audio FS-68SE monitors, Bel Canto Pre3 preamp, S300 amp, SD Squeezebox 2 driving Zhaolu 2.0 DAC.
Slimserver is running on my eMac, where I have 14 days worth of music (so far) ripped to an external hard drive.
I'm an unoffical "co-founder" of a NYC-based audio club called the NY Audio Rave. We use Audiocircle.com as our online home, and we have meetings in peoples' homes once a month. Its via these meetings that gives me the opportunity to hear far more gear and systems than I ever thought possible, with gear shootouts being a focus of many of our meetings.
I was a believer in the effects of power cords, interconnects, vibration control devices, and other tweaks long before I became a dealer. I do not believe that something needs to be expensive to be good; I also do not believe that if something is expensive, it is overpriced. I'm willing to try just about any tweak once, but do not use many tweaks in my general audio/music-listening life. That said, I think Machina Dynamica is full of sh*t...! I am also of the believe that there is very little *bad* gear out there, but that system synergy and proper setup plays a huge role in the differences we hear in audio gear.
I'm in my early 40s, and I grew up mostly listening to rock, blues and jazz. Played piano as a child and keyboards in a college rockband, but was a jazz saxophonist in high school. At my current age, I no longer play the piano or saxophone...if someone wants me to play music, I now play the stereo. :-)
My music taste has evolved as I've gotten older. I will admit that my audiophiling has also affected my musical tastes, finding it hard to listen to poorly recorded music from the 1940s and earlier as well as some of my favorite stuff from the 80s. These days, I'm listening to a lot of guitar-based music (everything from Jeff Beck to Tommy Emmanuel to Kenny Burrell), trumpet (John Faddis, Mark Isham), and world music (Mino Cinelu, Robbie Robertson, others). But I still consider Sonny Rollins and Stan Getz among my favorites.
As far as my audiophile tastes, I have gotten to the point where I don't think I could live without a tube somewhere in my system! The Blue Circle hybrid amps are perfect for me, because I can get the warmth and musicality of tubes that I love while still getting enough speed and clarity that the music I love demands. I'm not a "mega-bass" kind of guy, as you can probably see from my primary use of 2-way speakers with no subwoofer. And Ralph Dodson is the most impressive engineer I've met in this industry, so if he thinks Bybees help, I'm all for 'em...! ;-)
Anyways, that's me...
Last edited by PhilNYC; 2007-02-13 at 13:01.Sonic Spirits Inc.
2006-11-29, 15:36 #7
- Join Date
- Sep 2006
My 3rd brane system
In the 3rd brane my name is )(&^^##%*&(*))) but just call me Tom.
I have the following:
Speakers: Swillsome Audio: Amp/Guppies
Electronics: Stiff'm Roll'em Design Group
PhatDevices Incinerator and SneezeBox30 designed by Con Madman
Milder Cables Penultimate Power Supply
Sinn Sound Drek TT with GrahamCracker Arm
Cardinal Phang Light Speed power conditioner (sorry CP)
YouvegotsomeNerve Acoustic treatments: Response Depends Tri-Corner Diapers, A-slap Triangles.
Room-Loon floor standers
BS-C tube traps
Per Get-High Dungeons speaker placement suggestions one speaker is hung from the ceiling and the other is upside down on the floor. The results: OMG OMG OMG , astonishing.
Last edited by tomjtx; 2006-11-29 at 21:23.
2006-11-30, 07:19 #8
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
I'm Hugh, yclept inguz. ('ing is an old screen-name dating back to Moo; it somehow implies process rather than destination, means not ends; ing, inguz or ng is the 22nd rune of the elder futhark, signifying fertility inter alia, requiring completion. There's also a meaning of "You're in a rut, you've got to get out of it, out of it, out of it...", as the old song goes).
I grew up tinkering with electronics and computers. For a few years I worked in a hi-fi store (Jeffries), and got a taste of some decent systems in the shop: Naim to Isobariks never sounded real, but LP12 - Troika - Audio Research SP10 and monoblocs - Celestion 6000 was magical. For a long time my own system was Linn Axis and Rega Planet, to a homebrew ECC83 pre, heavily reconstructed Quad 405 (which is still in the basement), and Monitor Audio 352 Gold. Which all made a seriously loud, very warm and really quite detailed sound.
Now I'm looking for the disappearing sound system. Three components: Transporter, heavyweight LM3886 amp, and Gallo Ref3 speakers. It borders on the superb. There's lots of music on a PC with 2x400 RAID: jazz, folk, electronica, reggae, dub, plus a good slice of old-fashioned down-and-punky rock. I'm playing around a lot with DSP on the PC, for EQ and room-correction and stereo-dipole crossfeed and that sort of thing. I think it works; not a panacea for a bad setup, but capable of pulling anything up by a notch or two.
When the system disappears I can feel the musicians in the room it was recorded in. This seems surprisingly difficult; it happened most recently with Don Cherry/Ed Blackwell "El Corazon". I've been spoiled by listening to some really excellent systems recently (Wadia/Pass/Hales, Wadia/300B OTL/Avalon, Wadia/Electrocompaniet/Gallo, tubes to B&W 805s, SCD1 to SETs and RCA field-coil drivers in Tractrix horns...) and hearing first-hand the effect of cables, damping and other esoterica. I don't understand how some of these subtleties and tweaks make a difference, but they do seem to. This audiophilia is a slippery slope...
2006-11-30, 08:48 #9
- Join Date
- Nov 2006
ML Vantage system
I have a dedicated sound-video room with Martin Logan Vantage, Cinema i, NHT dipoles, and NHT ceiling speakers. I have a DC-1 Lexicon, and A Bryston SSC 3 stereo amp for the Vantages and and Outlaw 7500 for the other 5 speakers.
We listen about 10' from the 2 ML Vantage speaker which are 7.5' apart. The speakers are 2.5' from the walls and 3' from the front wall.
I use a computer for my DVDs to my Pansonic 50" plasma (TT) and Direct TV HR 10-250 for my other viewing. The TV is 3' further back (behind the dpeakres and centered on the wall. The region around the TV is heavily damped with Aurlex. The Cinema i is on the ceiling, centered and rougly in the sample plane as the ML Vantage speakers; i.e. 10' from the listener.
I have ripped ~1100 CDs using WMA lossless with error correction. I am now ripping new ones with EAC and Flac.
I use Foobar 9.4.1 for serious lisitening with ASIO drivers.
Since the SB3 is so convenient I would like to use it in this system. I bought it for my daughter so I am now taking the opportnity to evaluate it and will buy one for oursevels if it meets our critical listening criteria.
2006-11-30, 10:43 #10
As my signature shows, I cannot call myself a true Audiophile! Still I lurk in this forum as I am more than interested in good audio reproduction and equipment (as well as any cool gadget in general).
I am not trained in any musical dicipline; in fact if I tried to play on an instrument I would be rolled in tar and feathers and run out of town!
I love listening to music though, mostly pop/rock/blues - from the 70's till today. With "pop" I am thinking of the popular music as it was in the 60's and 70's - not today's marketing driven drivel. My CD collection is about 1250 CD's, so there is plenty to choose from.
I like to go to live venues and try to go one at least every other month; I also go to blues festivals and stuff. First concert was Supertramp in 1979!
On my kit - Rotel and Kimber Kable are well known stuff for most of you, but the DynaDel speakers are made here in Norway by a company called "Eltek - Ingeni°r Strand" (http://www.dynabel.no for those who understand the lingo). It is a two-way speaker with a Scanspeak D2905 tweeter, a Seas Excel bass driver (magnesium membrane!)and a high quality filter (price: around 1250 euro). These are placed on solid (and heavy) Empire stands. The Kimber 4TC kables are terminated with WBT connectors. The SB3 is powered by a linear PSU based on a Calex 32005A 5V/3A unit. I also have a Rotel RDV-1050E which is used for my concert DVD's and newly purchased CD's I haven't ripped yet.
The sound quality can be described as neutral, well controlled and at the same very musical. Bass is decent; or will be when I fix my listening room's resonance problem!
I went for the Rotel kit after comparing it with a few alternatives (with listening tests), as I found that it fits my speakers well and I like the look of the units.
Photos of the Rotel amps and the speakers can be found here: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showth...t=19817&page=9
PS. I forgot to mention I got interested in the Squeezebox, because I couldn't bother with the hassles of PC based playback!
Last edited by tomsi42; 2006-11-30 at 18:28. Reason: Added PS.SB3, Rotel RC-1070/RB-1070, dynaBel Exact, Kimber Kable 4TC and Timbre.