MVP of your system - make it known here!

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  • heiney9heiney9 Posts: 23,828
    edited November 2016
    MVP of my system:

    1987 Polk Audio SDA 1C - original retail $1600 in oak

    mods including RD0's, Sonic Caps, Mills, Larry rings, Spikes about $400 worth of mods.

    http://www.polksda.com/sda1creview.shtml

    Pass Labs Aleph 30 amplifiers gets a very close runner up - original retail $2,000.00

    http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0701/volksamp.htm

    MIT Shotgun cabling is a very, very close 3rd.

    I must reiterate EVERYTHING MATTERS, and the sum of the parts is what makes a winning system, not just a single component.

    H9

    P.s. I suppose you could look at from this perspective, which component would be the very last thing you would change? For me it would be the SDA's, hence my MVP.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30 | EE Avant Pre | EE Mini Max Plus DAC | MIT Shotgun S3 | MIT Z P/C's | updated SDA 1C| SQ Box Touch/Welbourne Labs P/S- Tubes add soul!
  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 10,558
    F1nut wrote: »
    Hello Kitty Stereo AM/FM/CD boom box. $43.48.

    did you forget the PS Audio power cord you spliced in?
  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 14,763
    I guess I think of this differently. I think the MVP should not be the best piece in your rig, but the one that makes it all gel together. For that, I give credit to the cabling. I experienced this yet again setting up for the meet 2 weeks ago. The S60 sounded muddled and uninspiring with one set of cables, then I swapped to the Helicon 16 and all was right with the sound.

    For those who doubt it, this was actually going DOWN in gauge that led to the great improvement in sound. Having cables that simply get out of the way and let the rest of the gear shine is what its about.
    audiothesis.com/

    Speakers: Harbeth: 30.2, SHL5+; Usher: Be-10, T-515; Rosso Fiorentino: Elba, Pienza, Certaldo, Fiesole, Volterra; Polk: T50, Signature S15, RTA 15tl, RTi12; Sonner Audio Allegro Unum, Legato Unum, Legato Semis, Legato Duo; Emerald Physics CS-2.8; Klipsch KLF-20
    Preamps: Shuguang S200MK, Dayens Ampino, Parasound P5
    Amps: Shuguang S845MK, Dayens Ampino Monoblocks, Parasound A23
    Integrateds: Triode Corporation TRV-88SER, MastersounD: BoX, Dueventi, Compact 845, Evolution 845; North Star Design Blue Diamond
    Sources: AURALiC Aries, Denon HEOS Link, North Star Design: Magnifico, Supremo, Incanto, Intenso, Venti
    Cabling: Wireworld
    TV: Sony XBR-75X940C
  • dromundsdromunds Posts: 7,100
    Montgomery Wards 8-track with Otis Redding/Jimi Hendrix Experience at Monterey 8-track bootleg
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    edited November 2016
    Joey_V wrote: »
    Thought long and hard, here is where I stand in terms of my MVP.

    1. MVP - room treatments - .....

    This. To paraphrase The Dude, it really ties the room together. Gear, quality of recorded music don't mean squat until you do your best to eliminate them frequency spikes and nulls. It is hard to attain a perfectly flat frequency response in rooms, but you can get closer than living with what you got. You get what you accept. Sweep to see, results might surprise you. Fix it, then you become MVP with room treatments and everything else below you.


    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • tonybtonyb Posts: 29,555
    edited November 2016
    My MVP is....

    ME !!

    Do I get a trophy now ? :)

    HT SYSTEM-
    Pioneer elite vhx 21
    Sony 4k BRP
    Tad 803 bookies
    Polk 500 surrounds
    Polk s35 center
    SVS SB-2000
    Sonos

    Music-

    Joule la-100 pre
    B&k 1403 amp
    Cary xciter dac
    Cullen modded Sonos
    ERA D5 bookies

    Cables-
    Acoustic zen Satori speaker cables
    Analysis plus crystal oval ic's
    Wireworld eclipse 7 ic's
    Audio metallurgy ga-o digital cable
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    edited November 2016
    tonyb wrote: »
    My MVP is....

    ME !!



    You Ichyban! A #1! lol

    MVP - Dayton Audio's OmniMic V2 ($300)
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • tonybtonyb Posts: 29,555
    LMAO....

    Going to play devils advocate here for a second. I get that most you guys favor one piece or another, most of us do regardless, but I dunno man.

    Seems to me, when asked what matters most in your system, the majority here have said speakers matter most. Shouldn't that then be your MVP ?
    HT SYSTEM-
    Pioneer elite vhx 21
    Sony 4k BRP
    Tad 803 bookies
    Polk 500 surrounds
    Polk s35 center
    SVS SB-2000
    Sonos

    Music-

    Joule la-100 pre
    B&k 1403 amp
    Cary xciter dac
    Cullen modded Sonos
    ERA D5 bookies

    Cables-
    Acoustic zen Satori speaker cables
    Analysis plus crystal oval ic's
    Wireworld eclipse 7 ic's
    Audio metallurgy ga-o digital cable
  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 10,558
    dromunds wrote: »
    Montgomery Wards 8-track with Otis Redding/Jimi Hendrix Experience at Monterey 8-track bootleg

    Dude rock it like you stole it :p
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    Speakers matter, as long as you are getting good frequency response with their placement in the room.

    My MVP was Dayton Audio's OmniMic V2, cause it showed differences with speaker placement and treatments. When I first plopped my Salks in the room where my other speakers performed best, I was disappointed due to a 15dB dropout in the mids. Rather than saying these speakers suck and tossing them to the curb, I started moving them and improved midrange response.
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • KrazyMofo24KrazyMofo24 Posts: 1,137
    Joey it's interesting that you said room treatment made the biggest impact. It's something I have been wondering about but going to look into it more. I think I'm good with my speakers, preamp, and dac for now. I was thinking upgrading my B&K amp would be the next move and then cables. Now I'm thinking room treatment should be next.

    Are they any brands / models that you or anyone else recommend? My current setup is in the bedroom which I don't see changing anytime soon.
    Setup:

    2 Channel: Vienna Acoustics Mozart Grand, T+A P 1230R, Primare SPA21, Oppo BDP-105
    PC: Vienna Acoustics Haydn Grand, Cambridge Azure 650A v2 , Peachtree iDAC, Denon DVD-3800BDCI

  • halohalo Posts: 4,304
    Joey it's interesting that you said room treatment made the biggest impact. It's something I have been wondering about but going to look into it more. I think I'm good with my speakers, preamp, and dac for now. I was thinking upgrading my B&K amp would be the next move and then cables. Now I'm thinking room treatment should be next.

    Are they any brands / models that you or anyone else recommend? My current setup is in the bedroom which I don't see changing anytime soon.

    GIK acoustic panels and treatments. Do a google search.
  • minerminer Posts: 1,084
    1) McIntosh MC452 $8000
    2) McIntosh C2300 $6500
    3) VPI Aries 3x3 w/ Ortofon Cadenza Black $9500
    4) Manley Chinook Phono Stage $2400
    5) McIntosh MTC450 transport & D150 DAC/digital pre $7000
    [
  • minerminer Posts: 1,084
    ^ the above system I don't listen to digital much -reason for SACD player falling in at #5
    [
  • Mike ReeterMike Reeter Posts: 3,273
    miner wrote: »
    ^ the above system I don't listen to digital much -reason for SACD player falling in at #5

    With a Vinyl Rig like that, I can certainly see why ;)

    SDA SRS 3.1TL's/SDA CRS+4.1TL's and some other stuff
  • GlennDogGlennDog Posts: 1,512
    dromunds wrote: »
    Montgomery Wards 8-track with Otis Redding/Jimi Hendrix Experience at Monterey 8-track bootleg

    Now, THAT'S what I'm talk'n about!
    Power Rogue M180 monos & Adcom GFA 5802
    PS Audio PerfectWave Power Plant 10
    Rears Definitive Technology BP-2
    DAC North Star Design Supremo
    Source PSA PWT & Oppo 105
    Pre/Pro Integra DHC 40.1
    LCD Samsung LN46B750
    Mains Salk HT2-TL
    Pre Cary SLP-98 F1
    Center Salk HT2C
    Wires MIT S3.3
    PSA PC AC-12
  • MVP of my system would no doubt be the Polk 1.2tl's. They've held that position since day one when I brought them home some 5 or 6 years ago. The electronics and interconnects have a nice synergy with each other and no component really stands out. I guess this is part of the reason it's called a system
  • dromunds wrote: »
    Montgomery Wards 8-track with Otis Redding/Jimi Hendrix Experience at Monterey 8-track bootleg

    This Wards Airline was @ one time all I had, and yes it played a lot of bootleg.

    8e7zsgnxsmxn.jpg
    2 channel: Anthem 225 Integrated amp; Parasound Ztuner; TechnicsTT SL1350; Vincent PHO-8 phono pre; Marantz CD6005 spinner; Polk Signature S60's;Cables: Wireworld Eclipse IC; Audioquest Big Sur IC; Zu Audio Mission speaker cables; PS Audio AC-3 power cords, all into a PS Audio Dectet Power center.

    All TV's sound enhanced by Polk Magnfi Mini's.

    Other; SDA2BTL's, M10 series II, M7C's, Hafler XL600 amp, RB-980BX, Parasound HCA-1500 amp , P5 preamp, all in storage.

    Political memes posted as fact and accepted as fact, are sign language of the ignorant, for the ignorant

    tonyb said " but even socialists can do a good thing here and there
  • WTSWTS Posts: 170
    @Joey_V, it depends on what your priorities are.

    My priority is music.

    Other people may have other priorities. For an analogy, let's say that you and I are both into motorcycles. I like to ride them. You like to rebuild them. Which one of us is right? Neither, and both! We both have fun, just in different ways. I've known people who race motorcycles. I've known people who ride motorcycles coast to coast (as I have). I've known people whose fun was owning, washing, and polishing the motorcycle; riding it, other than somewhere to be seen with it, was purely secondary.

    There is nothing wrong about this. Different strokes for different folks. However, sometimes I see that people confuse their love for equipment with love for music.

    My greatest musical experiences have been when I was on stage, part of the performance. To pick just one work, my favorite live experiences of the Brahms German Requiem, I was on stage performing with the orchestra and chorus. I have heard wonderful performances from the audience POV (NY Phil, Atlanta Symphony, St. Louis Symphony, and many others), but nothing matches being on stage and part of the performance.

    Second to performing, the best musical experience for me is hearing a live performance. I have heard everything from an elementary school orchestra concert, to the Berlin Philharmonic; from a local garage band, to Frank Zappa; from high school jazz combos, to Miles Davis; from a local bluegrass combo just today, to Vassar Clements.

    The reproduction of recorded music is third place for me. I like listening to recorded music, I value it, and I listen to recorded music on a regular basis. However, the attempts to replicate the sound of live music is just that, an attempt. No recording fully replicates the live music experience, and no recording even comes remotely close to the experience of performing.

    The stereo system is the tool.

    If all you want to do is hear music, a $5 AM/FM radio will do the trick. At the other end, I once listened to a recording through the six- or seven-figure stereo system of a friend of mine who used to write for Stereophile. It was impressive, but I would still rather hear the music live. (In fact, I *did* subsequently get to hear my friend perform live the very piece that he played on his stereo for me.)

    My stereo is between these two extremes. In quality it's much closer to the above mentioned six-figure stereo; in price it's closer to the $5 radio. That's because of the 80/20 rule: you get 80% of the results with 20% of the effort (or, in this case, cost). I can afford to spend more than $5. I can't afford to spend six or seven figures, and I doubt I would even if I could.



    If your reaction to this is tl;dr, here's the summary: I like performing best, listening to live music next, listening to recorded music third. For me, the stereo is the music delivery device, nothing more (or less). Other people have different priorities, and that's okay.

    Re my "gullibility" comment in another thread: there is an embarrassing amount of snake oil out there, and some people buy into it. The good news is that none of that (to the best of my knowledge) is produced by Polk.

    But if you really want me to list devices, the first two I'll mention are my Grado headphones and my Etymotic in-ear phones. In the last few years and until recently, I've probably listened to more high-quality recorded music through them than any other way.
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    I slipped on some snake oil once and slid right into a white van.
    I Bose'd my knee and had a monster headache.

    lol

    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • Rick88Rick88 Posts: 12,863
    edited November 2016
    Electricity.

    In all seriousness, I'm very surprised that more people haven't listed their speakers first...
    "Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music." ~ Ronald Reagan

    “I love songs about horses, railroads, land, Judgment Day, family, hard times, whiskey, courtship, marriage, adultery, separation, murder, war, prison, rambling, damnation, home, salvation, death, pride, humor, piety, rebellion, patriotism, larceny, determination, tragedy, rowdiness, heartbreak and love. And Mother. And God.”
    ~ Johnny Cash





  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    Joey paid his dues. IIRC at least four years in school and then 3-7 years residency. If he wants to spend his dough on nice gear, he earned it. But you don't have to spend a fortune to have a great sounding audio system.

    Take a look at how many rooms are acoustically treated at audio shows these days. What were those high end speakers that had identical speakers in each room? One room treated, one not treated, each with printed graphs of room sweeps to view.

    The difference you heard between the treated and untreated rooms wasn't snake oil. The treated room had better bass and a flatter frequency response so the replayed music didn't have certain frequencies that were greatly amplified, nulled out or muted.









    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 14,763
    I think that was the Magnepan rooms, right?
    audiothesis.com/

    Speakers: Harbeth: 30.2, SHL5+; Usher: Be-10, T-515; Rosso Fiorentino: Elba, Pienza, Certaldo, Fiesole, Volterra; Polk: T50, Signature S15, RTA 15tl, RTi12; Sonner Audio Allegro Unum, Legato Unum, Legato Semis, Legato Duo; Emerald Physics CS-2.8; Klipsch KLF-20
    Preamps: Shuguang S200MK, Dayens Ampino, Parasound P5
    Amps: Shuguang S845MK, Dayens Ampino Monoblocks, Parasound A23
    Integrateds: Triode Corporation TRV-88SER, MastersounD: BoX, Dueventi, Compact 845, Evolution 845; North Star Design Blue Diamond
    Sources: AURALiC Aries, Denon HEOS Link, North Star Design: Magnifico, Supremo, Incanto, Intenso, Venti
    Cabling: Wireworld
    TV: Sony XBR-75X940C
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 6,878
    DSkip wrote: »
    I think that was the Magnepan rooms, right?

    It could have been...GIK has done that as well.

    Oh snap, poor memory, it was Sonus Faber Stradivari speakers with Pass mono blocks.
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • lightman1lightman1 Posts: 9,795
    I slipped on some snake oil once and slid right into a white van.
    I Bose'd my knee and had a monster headache.

    But it all got better when you rested under the Maple-shade......
  • Joey_VJoey_V Posts: 6,591
    DSkip wrote: »
    I think that was the Magnepan rooms, right?
    SCompRacer wrote: »
    Joey paid his dues. IIRC at least four years in school and then 3-7 years residency. If he wants to spend his dough on nice gear, he earned it. But you don't have to spend a fortune to have a great sounding audio system.

    Take a look at how many rooms are acoustically treated at audio shows these days. What were those high end speakers that had identical speakers in each room? One room treated, one not treated, each with printed graphs of room sweeps to view.

    The difference you heard between the treated and untreated rooms wasn't snake oil. The treated room had better bass and a flatter frequency response so the replayed music didn't have certain frequencies that were greatly amplified, nulled out or muted.








    SCompRacer wrote: »
    DSkip wrote: »
    I think that was the Magnepan rooms, right?

    It could have been...GIK has done that as well.

    Oh snap, poor memory, it was Sonus Faber Stradivari speakers with Pass mono blocks.

    It was resolution acoustics room with Pass and Sonus Faber Stradivaris.

    Not Magnepans.
    Joey's Gear:
    Current Gear:
    Torus RM15 -> Emm Labs DAC2x and TSDX Transport -> Cary SLP-05 preamp -> Boulder 2060 stereo amp (w/ Audioquest WEL Signature) -> new speakers
    Rotel RA1592 Super Integrated -> Sonus Faber Olympica 3
    Rotel RC1570 preamp -> Rotel RB1582 amp -> Focal Kanta 2

    Old Gear:
    Speakers: BW PM1 (3.5/5), CM10s2 (3.75/5), BW800D3 (5/5), Rockport Aviors (5/5), Sonus Faber Stradivari (5/5), BW 802D2 (4.5/5), Martin Logan Summits (4.25/5), Martin Logan Vantage (4/5), Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor (3.75/5), AV123 Strata Mini (3.5/5), ML Mosaic (3.25/5), Onix Ref1 (3/5), Sonus Faber Concerto (2.75/5), SF Concertino (2.5/5), Axiom M22ti (2/5), Polk LSi9 (3/5), LSi7 (2.9/5)
    Source: Squeezebox 3 -> PS Audio Digital Link III -> Cary 306/200 CDP -> Cary 306 SACD -> EMM LABS DAC2X/TSDX
    Preamplification: Rotel RC1070 -> Rogue Perseus -> Cary SLP98 -> Cary SLP98F1 -> Cary SLP05 (sold and then repurchased)
    Amplification: HK AVR330 -> Rotel RB1070 -> Rotel RB1090 -> Plinius SA102 -> Cary 211FE -> Classe M600 -> Boulder 2060
    Subwoofer: Infinity Entra2 sub -> SVS 25-31PC+ sub
  • muncybobmuncybob Posts: 1,842
    My system is very modest. I recall the biggest piece that gave us the biggest sound improvement was the SDA 2B's. I don't recall original retail but I picked them up for about $400 20+ yrs ago. They then became a repeat MVP when all the mods I read about here were performed to them.
    The 2nd MVP was going to a Parasound(again not sure on retail but I paid $200 for it) amp...yes, only entry level with the 1000A but this combined with the 3rd MVP which is my Dynaco tubed preamp(original retail somewhere around $1k?) has us satisfied for the moment.
    There have been other additions along the way but these 3 have been more of a wow factor than anything else. Of course it still leaves me wondering what improvements we can get by going up the ladder. I think our next step will be something like the A23 amp but the Mrs will veto that for at least another 6 months :(
    Yep, my name really is Bob.
    Parasound HCA1500, Dynaco PAS4, Denon DP1200 w/Shure V15 Type V and Jico SAS stylus, Oppo BDP93, "upgraded" Polk SDA 2B.
  • mrbironmrbiron Posts: 4,811
    Here ya go. I had a spare minute. In order of greatest return to least.
    I am legally deaf on half of my squash (yet no hearing aids in the foreseeable future chosen by me) so the minute, if any, change with cabling was falling on deaf ears *rim tap*...thus, them being placed at the lowest end of the list.

    This begs for a cable debate to ensue. :D
    Please don't!

    #1 Speakers - Zu Audio Omen MK-1B's - $1,500
    #2 Integrated - Peachtree Audio Decco 65 - $1000
    #3 Power Cleaner - PS Audio UPC200 - $450
    #4 SC Cables - Zu Audio Mission SC - $250
    #4 PC Cables - PS Audio AC3 - $80ea
    #5 Comm Cable - Wireworld USB - $60

    I think my MRSP's are close based on interweb searches.

    Changing from RTiA5's to the Zu's was the most eye/ear opening experience i have had to date. Even i could hear the difference. They will be sticking with me for a while. Currently pulling HT duty paired with an Anthem receiver while my kids control the living room...
    Zu Audio Omen MK-1B's, Peachtree Decco65, Bryston BDA-2, Cheap TT, PS Audio UPC200, PS Audio AC3's, Zu Mission SC's, HTPC, One, Bottlehead Reduction & Crack w/Speedball
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