Your favorite "tweaks"

steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,987
edited November 2003 in 2 Channel Audio
What tweaks (either commercial products or DIY's) have you tried on your system, and how well did they work?

- I purchased vibrapods for my CD and DVD players, they actually showed the most improvement under the DVD...

- I placed my speakers on clay tiles, rather than directly on the carpet to tighten bass reproduction

- I'm "anal" about cable management---all signal cables are far away from all ac, and cables are lightly tie-wrapped.

What have you done?
Post edited by steveinaz on

Comments

  • Tour2maTour2ma Old School Posts: 10,176
    edited October 2003
    I...

    - moved all my equipment to a differnt room from my speakers for the ultimate vibration isolation

    - put my speakers on clay tiles affixed to the slab for maximum stablity

    - I replaced all my tie-wraps with twine... :D

    OK, only the first two are true... I do avoid parallel AC and IC runs, but I have never used a Sharpie to apply green ink to the outer edge of a CD...
    More later,
    Tour...
    Vox Copuli
    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. - Old English Proverb

    "It's easy to get lost in price vs performance vs ego vs illusion." - doro
    "There is a certain entertainment value in ripping the occaisonal (sic) buttmunch..." - TroyD
    "Death doesn't come with a Uhaul." - Dennis Gardner
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited October 2003
    Isolation, isolation, isolation.

    Gidrah hooked me up with a box of vibra-pod like 'discs' - small but audible difference under cd/dvd sources.

    Thick tile or slate under all subs, I've placed a 'spiked' floor tile under some speakers that didn't offer spikes, great low-end enhancement as you noted.

    I haven't placed any metal cones on top of the speakers, or glued a small sandbag onto the jitter crystals in my cd players yet....

    Wire mgmt is something I should probably look into, but I'm always swapping components, testing gear etc...

    Cheers,
    Russ
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • Frank ZFrank Z Polk-a-dweeb Posts: 5,967
    edited October 2003
    Well my 2 favorites are my $2.50 rubber door stops to tilt my Center channel down just a pinch. Second is my $10.00 slab of 1 3/4" thick Granite that I placed under my sub.
    9/11 - WE WILL NEVER FORGET!! (<---<<click)
    2005-06 Club Polk Football Pool Champion!! :D
  • organorgan Posts: 5,022
    edited October 2003
    My favorite is speaker positioning. Sometimes 1" can make all the difference.

    Maurice
    CD Player: Original CD-A8T
    Receiver: Harman/Kardon HK3390
    Speakers: Polk Audio RT1000p
    "I would rather have a cup of tone than an ocean of power" **Dr. Harvey Rosenberg**
  • 4_everyman4_everyman Posts: 50
    edited October 2003
    Originally posted by Frank Z
    Well my 2 favorites are my $2.50 rubber door stops to tilt my Center channel down just a pinch. Second is my $10.00 slab of 1 3/4" thick Granite that I placed under my sub.

    Cool! Somebody else using a Sunfire True Sub with Polk speakers!

    Interestingly, the floor of my HT room is granite and i have my sub sitting on one-inch high foam risers.

    Beauty set-up, Frank!
    Rgds,
    --Pete
  • Frank ZFrank Z Polk-a-dweeb Posts: 5,967
    edited October 2003
    Originally posted by 4_everyman
    Cool! Somebody else using a Sunfire True Sub with Polk speakers!

    Interestingly, the floor of my HT room is granite and i have my sub sitting on one-inch high foam risers.

    Beauty set-up, Frank!
    Rgds,
    --Pete

    Hey! We could start the "He-Man SVS Haters Club!" I'll be Buckwheat, you can be Spanky, and we'll sign up Dr. Spec as Alfalfa, remember he gets kicked out later. ;)
    9/11 - WE WILL NEVER FORGET!! (<---<<click)
    2005-06 Club Polk Football Pool Champion!! :D
  • HBombTooHBombToo Posts: 5,335
    edited October 2003
    I'll echo all of the above but I have "most" enjoyed adding new features into my system. It started with holography>speakers>cd multi tray>dvd/hdcd>avr>amp>sub/power amp>High Def>pcm jitter bug>change DTV receiver to high def and use 480p as the cartoon TV>New Theatre room in new house>universal dvd>power center. I'll add in analog later... **** cost a small fortune when ya think about it and now I'm starting over in the vintage world.

    :rolleyes: the wife is near her limit :(

    1/4 Twin...

    BTW, I get to see my first sonogram tomorrow. I took the day off so I'm haven a beer. AGAIN!!!! OH, Shame on me:D but I was doing a lot of traveling and missed the Tornadoes sonograms so this is way cool. **** I hope all goes well...
    ***WAREMTAE***
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,374
    edited October 2003
    Tweaks...**** where do I start.

    Well I started with different wire.Trying to find the RIGHT sound.Then came system matching,digging deeper went setup.After all that placement seemed to make that last bit of difference...........then I realized something after awhile.....The room had a big Impact on the overall sound quality or lack there of...so to speak.

    My favorite other then wire upgrades is tilt.Tilting the speaker back slighty back a huge impact on overall presence.

    I'm gonna say that was the one that started a chain of events.

    Dan
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • xfontanaxxfontanax Posts: 82
    edited October 2003
    Moved from a small couch, to an extremely large (and fluffy) couch. This was a 'tweak' my wife did without audio in mind, of course.

    Once the new couch was put in place though, it sounded like I had a new set of speakers.
  • fgr41fgr41 Posts: 432
    edited October 2003
    Here is my fav tweak. The text is swiped straight from the web page I found it on. It made a big difference in the sub performance.

    Here's how to turn your SAWM40 from a "boomy piece of crap" (as one of my once skeptical friends called it) to a thunderous monstrosity.

    1) I laid the SAWM40 on its back with the woofer facing upward.

    2) I removed the grill and the eight or so screws holding the woofer in place.

    3) I removed the woofer and sat it on the corner of the housing. Be careful here.

    4) I stuffed the 4 inside walls (left, right, top and back) with about a 3 inch layer of Poly-fil (Poly-fil is basically just pillow case stuffing and can be found in the bedding section of major department stores for about $2 a bag). I did not put any Poly-fil on the port wall (bottom), although some will reach that area from the other walls. Others had suggested stapling or perhaps gluing the Poly-fil to the walls to make it stay. However, I found this unnecessary. I put it in loose and the Poly-fil held itself in place quite well. I even re-opened the sub about a week later to make sure it was holding up. Everything looked identical.

    5) Replace the woofer and screw it back on. Replace the grill.

    6) Plug it in and feel the POWER!!!
    Front
    Polk RT800i (BI-wired)
    Rear
    Polk RT600i
    Center
    Polk CS400i (BI-wired)
    Sub
    SVS 25-31PCi (22Hz tuning port)... it's SubHuman
    Receiver
    YAMAHA RX-V1400
    TV
    Mitsubishi WT-46807 HDTV
    HD receiver
    T i V o HR10-250
  • gidrahgidrah Posts: 3,031
    edited October 2003
    Varnish on driver cones.
    Rope caulk on driver baskets.
    Window insulation between cone and whizzer.
    Strip speaker wire to connect to high and low terminal.
    Grind bolts to a point and use as spikes.
    Use of discs mentioned by Russman. I may try spiking some.
    Superballs. Not impressed. Will try again later.
    DIY cables and wires.
    Plug amps and pre's into separate circuit from motorized equipment.


    To do list:
    Rewire Altec horns with silver plated copper.
    Get better RCA plugs for solid silver interconnects.
    Get some large rubberbands and belts for isolation experiments.
    Mass load the Altecs via sand inside and stone on top.
    Re-cab the 10Bs into MTM towers with side firing PR.
    Clean all terminals thoroughly and replace any that don't pass muster.
    Try terminal caps and/or shorting plugs.
    Make it Funky! :)
  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,987
    edited October 2003
    2 others I forgot about (outta sight outta mind):

    1. Cardas caps on unused preamp inputs
    2. BNC terminator on unused digital out on CDPlayer

    1 thing I'd like to do:

    By-pass (via hard-wire) the volume pots and "bridge" switch on the back of my Parasound HCA-1500A, I don't use either. I don't like the idea of unused pots/switches in the signal path.
  • 4_everyman4_everyman Posts: 50
    edited October 2003
    Originally posted by Frank Z
    Hey! We could start the "He-Man SVS Haters Club!" I'll be Buckwheat, you can be Spanky, and we'll sign up Dr. Spec as Alfalfa, remember he gets kicked out later. ;)
    Heck, yeah! I remember the "He-Man Woman Haters Club" from Our Gang.

    Alternately, we could just be The Three Stooges: you as Moe and Dr. Spec as Curly. I would, of course, be Larry - the Stooge in the middle. :D
    Rgds,
    --Pete
  • Grimster74Grimster74 Posts: 2,493
    edited October 2003
    With out a doubt, adding the PB2+ subwoofer. Had no idea what I was missing in movies and music until I purchased the SVS.
    Money Talks, Mine says Goodbye Rob!!!!
  • Tour2maTour2ma Old School Posts: 10,176
    edited October 2003
    Subwoofer... a tweek?
    More later,
    Tour...
    Vox Copuli
    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. - Old English Proverb

    "It's easy to get lost in price vs performance vs ego vs illusion." - doro
    "There is a certain entertainment value in ripping the occaisonal (sic) buttmunch..." - TroyD
    "Death doesn't come with a Uhaul." - Dennis Gardner
  • danger boydanger boy Posts: 15,888
    edited October 2003
    moving my fronts farther apart then toeing them in slightly.. wonderful soundstage...

    I sometimes go to friends houses and do this simple tweak on their fronts. and they are impressed with the difference they get.. some times they have their fronts firing to far toed in. kills the imaging.
    PolkFest 2012, who's going>?
    Vancouver, Canada Sept 30th, 2012 - Madonna concert :cheesygrin:
  • EmlynEmlyn Posts: 2,426
    edited October 2003
    Buying a vacuum-type Nitty Gritty record cleaning machine. Snap crackel and pop removal for old vinyl. Expensive tweak but worth it.
    1. Polk LSiM707, 704C, 703; Dual SVS SB2000 subwoofers; Marantz SR7011 receiver; Parasound A23 amp; Oppo 205; Sony 65" 4K TV; FIOS; PS Audio Power Plant Premier; MIT S2 cables
    2. JM Labs Electra 920.1; Sonic Frontiers Line 3 Preamp; Classe Model 25 amp; Sony HAP-Z1ES; Oppo 105D; Music Hall MMF7 and Acoustech phono pre; PS Audio Power Director; MIT S1 Cables
    3. Polk LSiM703; Parasound JC2BP and A21; Sony 48" 4K TV; Wyred4Sound DAC 2; Oppo 203; Squeezebox Touch; MIT S3 cables
  • jmierzurjmierzur Registered User Posts: 489
    edited October 2003
    In order of best results obtained:

    - many hours properly locating speakers in the room (the rest is icing on the cake)
    - balanced power for entire system
    - install Bybee quantum filters on balanced power unit
    - install differential noise filter on balanced power unit
    - construct Bybee filters for speaker level connections (mains only at this time)
    - DIY tube traps (three of 10 constructed)
    - DIY speaker cables (UBYTE-2) for mains
    - construct 12" high, 45lb stands for subwoofers; place 5kg weights on top of each sub
    - Sorbothane material for feet under main speakers (calculated correct size is very important for best results)
    - "super balls" as isolation for components (cheap and fast, not as effective as I would like...)

    Two children so these are now future projects:

    - complete seven tube traps
    - build custom oak or maple A/V stand
    - finish constructing Bybee filters for surround speakers
    - finish UBYTE-2 speaker cable for center channel speaker
    - DIY interconnect cable (several designs in mind)
    - ?
  • Grimster74Grimster74 Posts: 2,493
    edited November 2003
    My bad, I misunderstood the question. The largest tweak I've ever made was not something I purchased it's just something I did. After getting rid of the dual psw450's I spaced my fronts out further which made a huge difference in sound quality. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
    Money Talks, Mine says Goodbye Rob!!!!
  • Dr. SpecDr. Spec Posts: 3,780
    edited November 2003
    Originally posted by Frank Z
    ..........and we'll sign up Dr. Spec as Alfalfa, remember he gets kicked out later. ;)

    WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!

    I will have my vengeance in this life or the next.........

    http://www.svsubwoofers.com/animation.htm
    "What we do in life echoes in eternity"

    Ed Mullen ([email protected])
    Director - Technology and Customer Service
    SVS
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,374
    edited November 2003
    waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

    Doc,
    that was so funny...........**** dude:D
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • dcarlsondcarlson Posts: 1,740
    edited November 2003
    Originally posted by steveinaz

    1. Cardas caps on unused preamp inputs

    Steve, what sort improvement did you notice from the caps?
    SDA-2a, Anthem Pre-2L, Anthem Amp 1, MF A324 DAC, Rotel RCD1070

    Senn HD650 Cardas, Mapletree Audio Ear+ HD2, Kimber KS1030, Bel Canto DAC2, M-Audio Transit, Laptop.
  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,987
    edited November 2003
    Originally posted by dcarlson
    Steve, what sort improvement did you notice from the caps?

    My system is already extremely low noise, so I can't hear any difference with these---they may be reducing the noise floor more, but in all honesty I can't hear it.
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