Jump to content


High Rollers
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Voltron

  1. I can make some calls/send emails tomorrow. Did you get guzziguy's info? Does anybody around here know how to contact him?
  2. Plenty of info on stevehoffman.tv/forums on these and earlier reissues. Check it out Mike.
  3. I talked to Jude today and the story is so heinous that it is unbelievable. Not everybody around here gives him much credit but he is really pouring his guts out over this thing and feels what he says way deeper than most people understand. Plus, the fact is that everybody here reads HF and relies on the info there and a bunch of it may be down the shitter from what he posted on Facebook. That sucks for all of us.
  4. So, I gave BigGuy the info through stevehoffman.tv but nobody else over there seemed to be on the list for the meet. I will call Neilvg tomorrow and check on Leeav and Min also. Did you ever ping any others JP?
  5. The latest at head-fi.org. That really sucks for Jude and whoever is helping him. 2007-11-14 1025 EST We are still at the datacenter, working with the vendor and OS team in Europe to restore the NAS. Even with 16 gigabytes of memory, the file system repair ran out of memory. The OS team in Europe has since upgraded our version of the file system repair program, which is apparently more efficient and less memory-intensive. It is in process right now, but getting it re-configured (including installing still another drive to provide ~160GB of swap) took most of the night. I have, for the most part, been at this datacenter since Saturday night. I have my portable rig to help me block out the din of the thousands of servers behind me in this datacenter, but I'm so ready to go home, and I'm so ready to get back to Head-Fi'ing with the rest of you. Thank you for your patience, and, once again, sorry.
  6. I have a sealed pint bottle of Old Taylor in its original box ("Spiritus Frumenti") that was casked in 1919 and bottled in 1933 during prohibition. The bottle and box are labeled "For Medicinal Purposes" and the box actually markets that by stating it is "Unexcelled for Medicinal Use!" My grandfather collected mini bottle from the 30s-50s that I also have, but the Old Taylor is most excellent. 100+ years old. Wonder what it tastes like?
  7. If X really meant what he typed and wanted to limit himself to American or Irish whiskeys and exclude Scotch or Canadian Whisky, then Pappy VW is a nice choice. Tyll had a bottle of the 20yr at Head-Fest and I knocked back a sizeable amount from a HeadRoom mug saturday night. Very nice. Knob Creek is everyday bourbon, but Black Maple Hill makes some nice whiskeys. I also like a good rye whiskey, and have mostly run through a bottle of Sazerac 18yr. Next I want to try the Black Maple Hill 18yr or maybe the 23yr, which is way too pricey and very hard to find.
  8. I quite like the Glenmorangie Burgundy Wood Finish. CHEERS!
  9. Vincent gets a two-fer! HB again.
  10. Happy Birthday Vincent and X! Cheers!
  11. Congrats Vicki! I actually saw that sub today and couldn't remember who had the Cains. Good stuff, and I am sure you will dig it.
  12. Jack Wu has a CD3K with a regular 1/4 connector and it is plugged into the 1/4 jack in the pic above. It sounds quite good with the WA5 on the low impedance setting.
  13. Hey Jahn- I am going to have an Ag-18 mini-RCA, and Ag-18 mini-mini, and a Cyprium One dock with hard-wired mini cable. We can go mobile for a comparo with a bunch of other stuff I will have but also on Sunday it may be a bit easier to do. Who knows, 60+ people is still a noisy bunch.
  14. Thanks for the responses Salty and KG. Not that it is something I really want to hear, but I might as well know what's going on in the box. I will say there is a fair amount of low frequency rumble, but I was attributing that to other things. Sorry for the off-topic distraction. I will be interested to hear the B-52 in action, but I am much more interested in hearing the GS-X and Rudi's new balanced amp at the meet.
  15. Kevin- I am sincerely curious about this comment and wonder if you can explain what is wrong with the balanced output on the XR-10B. I am no RSA fanboy but I did get a very good deal on an XR-10B and think it sounds great using the balanced outs. Interested in your thoughts. Thanks, Al
  16. These cables are fucking great! Other than the Head-Case style intro, this is the same review I posted on Head-Fi to make known Alex's fine work. Enjoy, or don't. At all three of the meets I have attended, I have used various cables made by Alex, aka ayt999, and I have been impressed with his work. At the recent Saratoga meet, I sampled three different mini-mini cables that he was working on, and talked to him about his idea of opening a "shop" on Mall-Fi. I said I would be happy to be one of his first customers and asked him to make me a mini-RCA cable for use with an iPod dock. When I received the mini-RCA last week, Alex also had included three new mini-mini cables and asked me to give them a listen and to post some thoughts if I felt like reviewing them. Each cable arrived in a cloth draw-string bag inside a small cardboard box. Someone in my office commented that the cables looked like jewelry and had boxes to match. Yes, this is fine audio jewelry but the cables are not just pretty--they all sound outstanding! So, here is a brief review along with some comparisons to the "reference" cables in my stash. First Up: Argentum Signature Ag-8 Mini-RCA Argentum is Latin for silver, which is what makes this cable shine. The mini-RCA is based on Alex's Ag-8 cable, which has eight separate insulated strands of solid silver wire braided together. Mine is terminated with a Switchcraft mini connector on one end and silver Cardas RCA connectors on the other. Alex uses what he calls a "Center-Sink ground return system is kept intact throughout with a dedicated Center-Sink system present for each channel from the mini connector to its corresponding RCA plug." All of this is wrapped up in beautiful white tech-flex, and the cable is very flexible. He also does a black tech-flex version. The build quality is excellent and the cable has handled lots of use and switching from home to office every day without a flaw. The introductory price on his Mall-Fi site is $150 for an 8" cable and $180 for a 12" cable. The mini-RCA I have been using is a Monster Cable variety that I got for use with an early iPod, and was purchased years before finding Head-Fi. It is not a great cable, but it is not terrible either. There is nothing too distinct about its sound signature or its capabilities. Usually, I like to do a lot of comparisons back and forth between cables because it is sometimes hard to tell differences, and different songs and setups have a different impact with one cable or another. The results of this comparison were too obvious, and too lopsided, so I quickly moved on to listening to the Ag-8 alone. Changing to the Ag-8 vastly expands the soundstage and overall resolution over headphones and speakers (yes, it is shocking to think that people use those big clunky things but it is a necessity on occasion). The Ag-8 has connected my new iPod 5G on an Apple universal dock to both my Prehead Prototype setup at home and my office setup with Headroom Desktop (Home amp/DAC modules). In both setups, the sound changed dramatically for the better with the Ag-8. The multiple strands of silver wire have a rich, detailed sound that does not get edgy or etched like silver cables sometimes can. The resolution pumps through a lot of music along with the room cues and "air" that create a large headstage with distinct instrument separation, placement, and a personal favorite element of presence. The high end definitely sparkles but the Ag-8 also has hefty bass that has good tone and control. Vocals have a distinctly "real" feel, and come through to your ears as they were sung. Between the time of the Saratoga meet and opening his Mall-Fi site, Alex says that he had changed the design of his silver cables, and I believe it! This cable is a big improvement: it has the things I liked about the cable at the time but with more body and no undue brightness. If anything, I would say that the Ag-8's clarity and transparency define it the most. I listened to a wide range of music on two different setups that have different sound signatures themselves, and the Ag-8 allowed those differences to be heard. The Prehead definitely has a warmer feel than the Headroom Desktop, and that additional warmth came through. The Ag-8 does not add a lot of its own sound, but portrays whatever you play very truly. For me, that is a very high compliment indeed. The original goal was to prevent me from buying a Crystal Cable iPod Piccolo cable for $400. As I have already told Alex, my previously burning desire has been quenched (for now at least), and I am very happy with the Wyvern Audio Ag-8 cable. As a matter of fact, I didn't even flinch when Alex pointed out that I missed out on a used Piccolo for a great price on the FS/FT board the other day (OK, I flinched a little). The Ag-8 is a very refined cable and well worth the price for its level of performance. Next Up: Cyprium One, Argentum Signature Ag-8, and Argentum Signature Ag-16 Mini-Mini Cables The heart of the Wyvern Audio lineup are three mini-mini cables, two made of pure silver wire and one of copper. From my discussions with him, it seems that Alex generally prefers silver-based cables to copper cables as a rule, but he attempts to voice his own silver work toward the sound of copper. To me, that means a fast and highly resolving cable that also has body and some warmth. To my ears, he has succeeded in both directions--making a copper cable that is highly resolving and fast, as well as some extraordinary silver cables that have body and warmth, and avoid the tendency toward glare. Alex sent me samples of each cable listed in the heading, and I have spent a fair amount of time listening to each of them and comparing them to my own "reference" mini cables. My goal here is not to provide head-to-head comparisons or to pick a "winner." Rather, I just wanted a point of reference. I will describe each of the Wyvern Audio cables, quickly lay out what was in my test rigs, and then give some listening impressions with a few comparisons along the way. Fit-n-Finish The first mini is called Cyprium One to denote its copper core. Alex wanted to make a lower-priced but still reference-quality mini as part of his line. The result is a cable that uses 24AWG pure copper conductors for signal and ground, and the wire is thin but has a very solid feel to it. It is extremely flexible and retains its shape like a solid core cable, which is actually quite handy in a portable setup--no torque on the components and you are able to fold or bend the cable as convenient. It has a black cloth covering, and heavy-duty Switchcraft connectors--optional Neutrik connectors are available if a smaller size is necessary. Although the review sample is about 7 inches long, Alex is offering Micro and even Nano sizes for low-profile mobile rigs. All-in-all, the Cyprium has a clean, simple look and feel, but looks can be deceiving. It is very well-made and sturdy. More on the sound below. The second mini in the Wyvern line is the Argentum Signature Ag-8, and the insides have the same make-up and geometry as the mini-RCA described above. It has the same 8 strands of pure silver cable, and a center-sink ground wire. One interesting note on the build quality of these cables is that Alex starts with bare silver wire and teflon tubes, so he is actually insulating his own wire as opposed to buying pre-fabricated silver wire. Talk about painstaking! The review sample is sheathed in black tech-flex, and has black and gold-accented barrels and gold-plated connectors. It is quite beautiful and sleek with my black iPod rig, and it feels solid as a rock at the connections. The sample is 12 inches and it is thicker and less flexible than the Cyprium, but still flexible enough to be easily workable in a portable rig. It also retains its shape, but not to the same degree as the Cyprium. The third mini cable is the Argentum Signature Ag-16, which is an over-the-top statement cable sporting 16 strands of pure silver delight. It is thicker and more rigid than the Ag-8, but the solid wire is flexible in use and can be bent into shape. The only available connectors are the heavy-duty Switchcraft nickel-plated variety, because the geometry cannot fit into any smaller. Still, I had no problems plugging into portable amps or docks, and the Supermacro 3 especially is rather a tight fit. The review sample has a more open-weave black tech-flex that lets the white braided wires peek through. It also comes in white tech-flex, and a naked version that is my personal favorite from the pics on wyvernaudio.com. The elaborate 16-wire braid is striking on its own, IMHO. Review Rigs I listened to the Wyvern Audio line-up as well as the reference cables on a few different setups because I wanted to get a sense of the cables on different systems and with different cans. The one constant was that I used my new 5G 60GB iPod as the source for all of the testing I did. For amps, I used both my SR-71 and Supermacro v.3, although the bulk of the critical listening was done with the SMv.3. As for the headphones, I used CD3Ks, HD650s, HF-1s, K701s and Super.Fi 5 Pros. The last two in that list were the ones I used to compare the cables against my reference cables. I also listened to a pretty wide range of music, including Bebo and Cigala, Aztec Camera, Lou Reed, Ginger Baker and the DJQ2O, Belle and Sebastian, Stereolab, Portishead, Ron Carter and Rosa Passos, The Cult and Norah Jones. For reference cables I used the RnB Audio Black Diamond Tiny matched up with the Cyprium One. The Black Diamond has been well reviewed here on Head-Fi, and I have been enjoying mine for the last few months. It is superbly made and has a refined look in a Tiny package. The Black Diamond runs about $10-20 more than the Cyprium, with the prices ranging from $65-$90 for RnB, and $55-70 for Wyvern. For the Ag-8, matchups, I used the RnB Audio Gold Reference and The Cable Pro's Ted's Earcandy. The Gold Reference is a beautiful and well-constructed gold and silver cable, about 12" long, and has Switchcraft connectors. The Ted's cable is 8", built like a tank, and I am not sure what kind of wire it uses but I have to guess it is some kind of stranded copper because. It is very flexible and takes a beating. Both of these cables are/were about the same amount as the Ag-8 ($115), even though the Gold Reference is not available for sale any more (and you can't have mine so don't ask!). The Ag-16 is in a class by itself because I don't own any mini cables at that price point. I also threw in a Rat Shack cheapie just as a sanity check every once in a while. It clearly sucked in comparison, so I felt good about that. The Good Part: How These New Mini Cables Sound As I said above, the Cyprium One is a deceptively simple and clean looking cable, but it really delivers especially considering its price relative to the market. Cyprium is as good as the Black Diamond on clarity, speed and soundstage, and that is a good mark to hit. Both of these cables are accurate and detailed, and have an open, airy feel to them. The Cyprium is much faster than your typical copper cable, and on some particularly sharp and fast piano runs in Bebo and Cigala, I felt the Cyprium handled the challenge a tad bit better than the Black Diamond. The Black Diamond is a little more transparent and neutral than the Cyprium, which does impart a little "copper" to the sound. However, the addition is a *little* extra warmth, it translates into more weight, body and bass, not flab or smearing. I especially noticed this late one night of listening with the K701. I compared back and forth between the cables listening to Ginger Baker, Portishead, and Ron Carter / Rosa Passos, and found that the Cyprium gave a little more body to the sound and some more bass. I like both of these cables very much, and different people might prefer one over the other but I would say you can't go wrong with either. The Ag-8 is the sweet spot in the Wyvern Audio line, IMHO, and is better on many fronts than any mini cable I have heard. The Ag-8 has the same braided silver design as the mini-RCA and has the same characteristics, but it seemed to have an even more obvious impact in the portable setup comparison. [One reason for that is that I did much more A-B-C testing with this cable than I did with the Ag-8 / Monster comparison.] Like its big brother, the Ag-8 mini is transparent and highly resolving, with the same rich, detailed sound described above. Alex's earlier mini-minis that I tried briefly in loud meet setting were a bit bright for my taste, even as recently as the Saratoga meet last mont, but there really was not a hint of edginess or glare when listening to the Ag-8 (like I am doing right now while typing). Alex apparently has worked out a new design that really sings. And the separation, air, and sense of space are outstanding for a mini cable. I think the Ag-8 exceeds the Ted's cable on all fronts. In comparison, Ted's is too congested and lacks headstage depth or breadth, can be smeared and muddy, and lacks resolution overall. The RnB Gold is a cable I really love because its sound signature is fast and warm at the same time. It has wonderful clarity, good range high and low, and creates a decent headstage. To my ears, however, the Ag-8 is a more neutral and a more resolving cable, that also has a bigger headstage (especially in width) and deeper, very controlled bass. The Ag-8 isn't cheap but it offers an exceptional cable at the same price people are paying for lesser cables like the Ted's Earcandy. I'm not sure Alex is going to get this one back anytime soon? Finally, there is the Ag-16. Since the Ag-16 has no price-equivalent in my stocks, I cannot compare it to anything directly other than the ones discussed above, and spent less time listening to it. Basically, the Ag-16 takes the Ag-8 and kicks it up a notch, to borrow an overused phrase. It manages an even bigger soundstage and a little more bass, but it has the overall neutral "sound" signature. It is a statement and it comes at a price, but I say Go For It if you can afford it. Kudos to Alex on his new line of Wyvern Audio mini cables, which I find all the more impressive because they are his first commercial offerings.
  17. I am pretty sure I am in Headroom's core market given that I own 5 headphone amplifiers, one of which is a Desktop w/DPS. Still, I am an attorney and cannot sit for hours during the work day with headphones on. In addition, the Desktop has a DAC and a preamp function, which kinda screams DESKTOP AUDIO SOLUTION rather than just A PLACE TO PLUG IN HEADPHONES. I have spent the last couple of months trying to figure out whether to run the line out of my beautiful Desktop into another company's power amp, or use a receiver, or use powered speakers, or, or, or,... If Headroom had had an amplifier I could buy, then I would have bought it to take advantage of those emply plugs on the back of the DPS and to keep a nice uniform stack. It is also worth noting that Meier Audio makes small monoblock amplifiers and I considered using my Prehead with those instead of getting the Desktop. The Prehead doesn't have a DAC, though, so I was back to a decision of which other DAC to use, etc. I don't want Headroom to try to do all things for all people, but I have to say that a 2-ch amp for the Desktop line seems like one of the more obvious extensions out of all those discussed in this thread.
  18. Those Amphions look pretty cool, and are similar to what I was looking at before breaking down and going powered. The Blue Sky set was one I looked at, but I liked the ones I got better. They do sound pretty great out of the Desktop w/home amp/dac. Funny, another one of my questions for the panel of people who aren't you inquired whether anyone was planning to make class D headphone amps.
  19. Hey Tyll- I proposed a question for the manufacturer panel at the Head-Fi Nat'l wondering if you guys would ever consider making a simple 2-ch speaker amp in your chasis. What do you think about that idea for the desktop market? It sure would be sweet given the pre-amp function, all those unused power connections on my DPS, and the lovely form factor of your new box design. I broke down the other day and bought some powered monitors (pumping some sweet Television tunes at me while I type) and that is a good solution but I want a GREAT solution. Any thoughts on that for your long-range planning horizon? I kinda like the other ideas above, too, BTW. Cheers, Volt
  20. Thanks for the clarification. Derek Vineyard is the fictional character played by Edward Norton, who is not a nazi to my knowledge.
  21. "Nigger, you just fucked with the wrong bull" comes from the most disturbing scene I have ever watched on film, which is in the movie American History X. This lovely line is uttered the moment before neo-nazi Ed Norton makes the guy bite the curb and smashes his head in.
  22. Voltron

    New Beginnings

    BTW, I just noticed that they put the farewell post back up in edited form--no email addy. They also deleted the first response by ilikecheese (?) but left in a challenging response by Jon. and one by Mbriant before locking it. Odd stuff.
  23. Voltron

    New Beginnings

    Welcome Yikes! I saw your post and had the thought of going back to get your email for an invite but then it was gone. Oh well, you kinda proved your point unintentionally. I am going to the National meet and I think that you should too! Even if you don't lug that TT down with you I think it will be a good time, and I don't think the Mod Squad will try to tell you what to say or how to say it in person. I heard you're pretty fuckin' big, so I for one wouldn't try it. [Just had to work the word "fuck" in there somehow]
  24. I have to agree with Ric--in a quiet setting on the same amp these two cans do not sound close. Saratoga was super noisy when Ripley was there with his 701s, so I think it was hard to make these kind of comparisons. The 701s have less than an hour of listening time, and they were far more airy and open, had a wider soundstage and seem to extend higher and lower. The 601s have a nice sound, and seem slightly more comfortable, but their sound is clearly more closed in as Ric mentions.
  25. Voltron

    Hey Everyone!

    All I can say is that the table next to the beer table will work just fine for me. Plus, if Slacker fucks around too much and bugs Mike enough, I should be able to sneak a couple extras over to our table. Is it beer:30 yet?
  • Create New...