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Thread: A/V System Scratch Re-build

  1. #1
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 18,106
    I'm Martin.

    Default A/V System Scratch Re-build

    Just got me one of these new-fangled 55'' LG tellys.

    Trouble with these things is the sound is crap. 20 watt chip amp through some 'speakers' on the rear panel. Got plenty of stuff lying around idle so I should be able to do a bit better than that.

    So 0700 this morning got underway. The wreckage of the old a/v system was dismantled, all muck and dust cleared up and ready for new installation.

    Speakers first. Got these Akais which fit nicely either side of the telly:



    Note the optical cable currently dangling down in front of the screen. Thought I would take optical feed out of the telly into the DAC in the amp, that way any source selected should automatically feed through its sound to the amp. Rack on the far left ready for amp and source components.

    Some time later, managed to get the amp, cable box and a Blu-ray player all hooked up. I was an early adopter of DVD and dolby digital but can't be arsed with multi channel anymore so am using this XTZ 2 channel amp as it has a built in DAC and remote. It just fits in the rack.

    Speaker cable is NVA LS5 that was lying about and the speakers are mounted on experimental bubble wrap/cardboard 'sandwiches' to prevent them resonating too much onto the shelf below. Seems to work

    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / NVA A30 Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  2. #2
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 18,106
    I'm Martin.

    Default

    Testing now with a Zappa live concert. It works!

    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / NVA A30 Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  3. #3
    Join Date: Apr 2012

    Location: Southall, West London

    Posts: 29,365
    I'm Geoff.

    Default

    Looks effective enough Martin. I edited one of your piccies, so we can actually see what you've done.

    Mr. Tact!

    Main system: MMs/ADCs/Low output MC's/One rare Japanese SUT/One scarce British phono stage/various tonearms/hefty Japanese DD TT and hefty Japanese BD TT and small British BD TT. 4 CD players/2 jitter buster/2 DACs/Valve buffer. TVC stepped attenuator or valve pre-amp or solid state pre-amp. Current dumping power-amp or either of two Class A SS power-amp or Class A EL34 valve monos or big Japanese (part Class A) integrated. Big dual concentric speakers/Smaller dual concentric speakers/Two way British compacts and full range speakers, amongst others. And too much more to list!

  4. #4
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 18,106
    I'm Martin.

    Default

    Cheers. The little JBLs up top aren't doing anything btw. They are just left over from the previous set up.
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / NVA A30 Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  5. #5
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 37,694
    I'm Grant.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by walpurgis View Post
    Looks effective enough Martin. I edited one of your piccies, so we can actually see what you've done.

    lol. i did same with his pics and sent him them... must be the aspergers in us geoff
    Regards,
    Grant ....

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply-doesn't-work
    .... ..... ...... ...... ................... ..... ..... ..... ..... .....
    DENON DV2900 - TWIN PRO MONOBLOCK AMPLIFIERS - XIANG SHENG DAC\PRE\HEADPHONE AMP - AVANTREE OASIS CLASS 1 BLUETOOTH - AUDIO TECHNICA ATH-MSR7 & OPPO PM-3 PLANAR HEADPHONES - WIN10 JRIVER23, SPOTIFY PREMIUM - ECHO DOT - SMSL M6 MINIDAC - FULL RANGE TWIN TELEFUNKEN's - Q ACOUSTIC BT3 actives - CANTON SUB - MAINS REGENERATED AND FILTERED.

  6. #6
    Join Date: Aug 2011

    Location: Coventry, England UK

    Posts: 421
    I'm Simon.

    Default

    Must have been tough doing that in the dark!

    Looks good, plus nice and simple. I do like my surround from time to time but it can be a pain to get it sounding good in a small room with speaker placement, etc.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 18,106
    I'm Martin.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon_LDT View Post
    Must have been tough doing that in the dark!

    Looks good, plus nice and simple. I do like my surround from time to time but it can be a pain to get it sounding good in a small room with speaker placement, etc.
    I know. The room is literally a man-cave I'm afraid. Plus it was dark and pissing down outside earlier on which doesn't help.

    Need to try the blu ray player next, see if that is also working. It used to but not used it in a few years. Then have a tidy up as I've trashed the entire room doing this.
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / NVA A30 Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  8. #8
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 37,694
    I'm Grant.

    Default

    here are the 2 i retouched



    Regards,
    Grant ....

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply-doesn't-work
    .... ..... ...... ...... ................... ..... ..... ..... ..... .....
    DENON DV2900 - TWIN PRO MONOBLOCK AMPLIFIERS - XIANG SHENG DAC\PRE\HEADPHONE AMP - AVANTREE OASIS CLASS 1 BLUETOOTH - AUDIO TECHNICA ATH-MSR7 & OPPO PM-3 PLANAR HEADPHONES - WIN10 JRIVER23, SPOTIFY PREMIUM - ECHO DOT - SMSL M6 MINIDAC - FULL RANGE TWIN TELEFUNKEN's - Q ACOUSTIC BT3 actives - CANTON SUB - MAINS REGENERATED AND FILTERED.

  9. #9
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 18,106
    I'm Martin.

    Default

    After a couple of weeks of testing I'm pretty happy with how this has worked out. The tv is great for the money, it is 4K ready but a discontinued model so I had it cheap. The latest version is over 2 grand! I won't pay that for a telly. By happy coincidence I sold some equipment so that subsidised it a bit. The amp, speakers and cable I had lying around and so cost nothing extra. Had to buy an optical cable as I couldn't find the one I know already have , but that was only 12

    I'm not much for getting obsessed about picture quality, as long as I can see (and hear) what is going on I'm happy. I hate it when no matter how much you crank up the volume you still can't hear what they are saying over the music and other sound effects. Used to have this problem with my old mulit-channel set up until I got rid of the centre speaker.

    This set up is just two channel using a proper hi-fi amp (XTZ) and 4-way 6 driver speakers (Akai SW175) from 1973. Despite their size and weight these were designed as bookshelf speakers so the way I have them set up with this system is pretty much what they were intended for, on a shelf up against a wall. This has the effect of gently filling out the bass without losing any tightness or clarity.

    My improvised bubble wrap/cardboard sandwich between them and the shelf seems to be working, no boom or resonance that I can hear. The shelf is made of quite thick, proper wood but it opens on hinges to access a storage area beneath and it was a worry that this might act as some sort of additional 'enclosure' without some damping. I had the cardboard and bubble-wrap lying about, so no cost there, either, even if it is an inelegant solution.

    I was looking around for something to test sound quality and came up with the BBC Proms on BBC4 HD. Classical is not the sort of music I listen to out of choice but I was surprised to find myself sucked in to it and watched the whole programme. Its almost as good as my main rig! Just a little 'vintage warmth' to the sound that reminds me I am listening to old school speakers, not something modern. The system was able to deliver the dynamics of the orchestra with reasonable conviction, no hint of strain or break-up at all. Of course with 110 watt amp and speakers that have a sensitivity of 96dB, you wouldn't expect it to.

    Wonderful 'woody' tone to the cellos and a bit of authentic rasp on the brass, too. And nothing does a kettle drum like a 15 inch driver! My only gripe is that imaging is not that wonderful, no doubt due to the expanse of TV screen right between the speakers. Hard to avoid that in an AV system, though

    I do have a big Yamaha sub I was intending to hook up too, but so far I've not felt the need. The amp has the facility to hook up both left and right subs with low-level connection, you just plug them in at the back with RCA leads. So that will happen at some point, if just for kicks.

    The important thing for me is that it is easy to listen to. Clean and smooth, and never any need to strain to hear the dialogue. This wasn't the case with the TV's built in sound which was fatiguing to listen to even for just a few minutes, hence this lash-up came about. I don't have to worry about WAF but even so the whole kit and caboodle tucks nicely into the alcove, and with the grilles kept on the speakers I doubt all but the most ball-breaking of spouses would complain about it. I suppose I could just have bought a 'sound bar' thing, but do they have 15 inch woofers and a class A amplifier? Do they bollocks.
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / NVA A30 Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  10. #10
    Join Date: May 2016

    Location: Birmingham, U.K

    Posts: 289
    I'm Taz.

    Default

    I remember poundland used to sell optical cables and I would ignore them until I went in a few weeks ago after deciding to change my phono leads from the cd player and laptop to digital, found they don't stock them no more.

    Going back to your system I think it looks great and am all for the vintage sound.
    Them akais are lovely looking speakers too

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