Turned Japanese - system tweaks and DIY projects

Discussion in 'Members' Systems' started by bjlefebvre, Nov 3, 2016.

  1. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    Anyone have experience with stands that tilt the 690's up a bit vs horizontal ones? Mine are slightly tilted, but the darn things are so heavy and unwieldy that I'm loath to experiment unless I hear that it's worth the hassle.
     

     

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  2. 70'sAudio

    70'sAudio Where it All Started for Me

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    Very Nice Indeed.........Nothing Wrong with Japanese Welcome to The Machine.

    Thanks for Sharing.

    ,Mike.
     
  3. onwardjames

    onwardjames Hoardimus Maximus Subscriber

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    A friend of mine made some oak stands that allow a staggered tilt, for a little or a lot, just remove a few wood blocks. Ingenious, and did help things (to my ears) whether it was because the sound waves weren't going parallel with the floor and ceiling, or that damn tweeter wasn't frying my ears.

    I love the build quality and the clean-ness (a word?) of those 690's, but they're a bit tuff on my tired old ears. I gravitate these days to Epi stuff. Stupendous speakers, tho. Had 2 pair, will always keep the one pair (sold the others).
     
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  4. punprankster

    punprankster AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    2017-07-08_03-33-21.jpg

    20170708_150326-01.jpeg

    This is what I have it on now. I bought it off ebay. Seller said that his dad brought it home from Japan where he was stationed at in the 80's. The platform height and the feet are adjustable so you can lilt the speakers upwards if you want to to hit your sweet spot.
     
  5. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Those stands are sweet, @punprankster . I think stands are going to be the next piece of the puzzle for me. At least they shouldn't be TOO expensive.
    Speaking of which, swapped out the VPI Scout for a VPI Classic 1. An audio shop three miles away was selling it for local pick up only. Got the turntable and a Gingko cover for about half the cost of a new Classic. If anyone is interested in a modded up Scout, hit me up.

    The shop also had a Clearaudio Performance. Looked pretty sweet. The Classic was my ultimate target for a table - I can't think of any other table out there that I actually lusted after - but the Performance was nice. I asked to listen to it, but the rest of the set up was so unlike what I have set up that I the exercise was useless as a comparison.

    So here is where we're at now: Classic into a Denon AU-320 SUT into a Parks Audio Budgie into a Rogue Audio Sphinx into the Blonde Yammies. TT, phono pre and speakers are done. Still toying with the idea of a Decware Super Zen Tori, but not anytime soon....

    IMG_20170819_131630654.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2017
  6. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    How high up do you have your speakers raised?
     

     

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  7. superdog

    superdog AK Member

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    Someone told me that shipping charges on goods from China are subsidized from the government.I don't know how true it is but is sounds plausible.
     
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  8. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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  9. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    About 6 inches off the ground and tilted back about 15 degrees (maybe less). They are as close to the bacl wall as I can get... about 10 inches of space between the wall and the top of the speaker.

    In the Japanese literature from Yamaha, I see them placed flush against the wall and straight on the floor. I don't know if that's an artistic aesthetic or a hint about placement from the factory.
     
  10. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    Compared to the DefTechs the sound of the 690 would best be described as "clean" I guess to the DefTech's "fat" or "rich" My guess is the powered subs in the DefTechs have something to do with that.

    The speakers that most remind me of the 690ii is the Hornshoppe "The Horn." If you want to hear a guy playing a guitar in your house, hire a guy to play a guitar or listen to a pair of Hornshoppe horns powered by a 2A3 SET flea amp. There's little difference between the two once those speakers are positioned well.

    If you want to listen to Motorhead, AC/DC or Gorillaz, the DefTech powered towers are my favorite speaker.
     
  11. onwardjames

    onwardjames Hoardimus Maximus Subscriber

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    Motorhead? Whatever would make you think I'd listen to that?


    :D
     
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  12. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    HAHAHA!
     
  13. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Lemmy. Why do the good always die so young? :(
     
  14. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    Dude..... he was a hard-drinking, coke-snorting, drug taking maniac that lived until he was 70. That's pretty good!
     
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  15. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Oh, I know about Lemmy. I just don't know how to use the sarcasm font.
     
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  16. mark warren

    mark warren Music Lover! Subscriber

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    Lemmy is still somewhere doing coke and drinking boose! You remember the old song if theres a rock n roll Heaven I bet they have a Hell of a Band!
     
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  17. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    Is it this one? :rolleyes:
     
  18. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    You know that 690 will need some help with Motorhead!
     
  19. MannyE

    MannyE Exterminate! Subscriber

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    Whatever the filter you used to take those pictures is amazing.
     
  20. bjlefebvre

    bjlefebvre AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Ok, sold the Scout. So turntables are done. For my final adventures in used gear, playing around with amps. I picked up a Decware Mini Torii on eBay.

    I've been interested in Decware since the friend who first got me into hi-fi talked about them with a gleam in his eye. I know that the cult around this brand can get a bit Kool-Aidey, but a small-footprint, all-tube amp is something that, like a lot of us, I at least wanted to try. The seller threw in a second set of tubes and aftermarket power cord. I was kind of apprehensive in getting it, since I liked the Rogue Sphinx and had just done some tube rolling with its pair of 12au7s and the 6922s on my Budgie phono pre to get a sound I really liked - clear but muscular. But these don't come up used very often, so I thought I'd roll the dice.

    So far the Decware sounds great. The Mini Torii is 5wpc, but the low wattage isn’t a problem at all on the Yamahas. I was listening to a vinyl copy of Funkadelic’s “Uncle Jam Wants You” at a louder volume than normal (hey, the wife’s not home) and the volume knobs are only at the 9 o'clock position. The sound is as muscular as the Sphinx but has quite a bit more air and separation. This album always sounded congested on earlier systems but now sounds nice and properly spaced out, in all the ways that term connotes. The soundstage is great, almost freakishly so. It extracts maybe a little more detail than the Sphinx but not so much more to bowl me over on that account. The bass, if anything, may be a little bit better on the MT - a bit more bounce to it.

    There are a few PITAs included. It’s a dual mono set up, meaning every control switch/knob comes in pairs. So it’s fiddly. There are seven separate switches - two for power, two for inputs, two for headphone on/off, one for a tone control kill. Then there's two knobs to change feedback levels, two volume knobs and one tone control knob. Decware offers several knob choices, but the previous owner chose the brass ones that don’t have dots or dashes, meaning that everything has to be tuned by ear (I put tiny dots made of electrical tape on the volume knobs so I could at least make sure both outputs were at equal levels). Meanwhile, none of the switches or knobs are labeled, meaning it’s not exactly user-friendly. I know I’ll have to show my wife a couple of times how to work this when she wants to listen to the radio - which switches turn it on, which change the inputs, and which are the volume controls. And also that she’ll need to flip the switches on BOTH sides.

    Also, with 10 tubes total on this thing, it gets warm. And with only two inputs, I either have to make/shell out for a switching box to go between tuner and DAC or change the RCAs manually.

    The whole thing has a smaller footprint than the Sphinx but is hefty. Still, I kind of like the Sphinx’s plain ruggedness, at least in a house with two little kids running around. They knew how to turn that amp on (one push button) and how to change volume/ inputs at papa’s command. This one will be a little more of a learning curve. Still a little curious about a Decware Super Zen Triode, which have an even lower wattage but also seem a little more straightfoward in the UX.

    IMG_20170915_112604743_HDR.jpg IMG_20170915_162355075.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2017
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