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Thread: Short but sweet time with Member Andy - SMANGUS

  1. #1
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,256
    I'm Robert.

    Default Short but sweet time with Member Andy - SMANGUS

    As a result of Andy (SMANGUS) purchasing a Panzerwood weight from me via Private Exhibitions here, I had the pleasure of meeting him in person.

    Luckily and conveniently he lives a few mins from me so I popped over to hand deliver the item.

    He invited me in and my eye immediately caught his very nice Nottingham Analogue Interspace, the special edition version with lovely Mahogany Plynth.
    I'm very taken by the look of decks with deep, substantial platters like this one.

    He asked me what I liked to listen to and then pulled a copy of Bob Marley & The Wailers 'Burnin'

    The arm looked like a tricked Rega RB of some kind with a XYZ Yatra on the end - We talked about the cart as I know the XYZ's are very good and that the Yatra is up the range.

    Phono Stage was Firebottle OTP

    Speakers - Celestion comapct A

    I didnt have a lot of time as I was on errands but I thought it would be rude not to indulge.

    The thing that struck me from the offset was superb imaging, instruments came from left and right in the weay that really good imaging does.

    Second thing was the excellent neutrallity.

    Listening a little further revealed excellent seperation of the individual parts but what has stuck with me and will stay is the way those seperate parts where tonally seperate too as well as accurate with the right body and textural information expressed.
    For example, when Peter Tosh's baratone harmonised behind Bobs lead, I could clearly differenciate the difference in the tonal texture between Bob and Peter, I can honestly say it is the first time I've heard this in such a pronounced, clear and natural way.
    The guitars that followed were again very tonally right, Oh and did I say that the bass was properly properly tuneful ?

    I can say hand on heart that I was genuinely taken by how analogue, tonally accurate, musical and non fatiguing this descrete, classy little systems was / is.

    It's opened my mind and knowledge even further.

    Andy has put together a nice set up, that has more depth than I've heard before.

    Those little Celestions are great and the Yantra has opened my eyes to what can be realised in terms of tonal depth - I'd have one !

    After about one side I had to depart but it was a pleasure meeting yet another AOS who is genuinely a really nice guy.

    Meeting him and hearing his system and how it presents the music has been a pleasure and given me food for thought

    Thanks Andy, hope you're enjoying the PatheWings Panzerwood weight and thanks for the tunes - Big up and Big up the AOS Community
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Modified Technics SL1210 MK5G
    Mike New precision bearing, bearing base plate, ETP Platter
    Micro Seiki MA-202 tonearm, rewired, hybrid ceramic bearings
    Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge
    Yannis Tome 423.5 Silver-Litz tonearm cable with KLEI Pure Silver Harmony plugs
    Ebony armboard
    Audio Technica MS-8 Magnesium headshell, Ortofon pure silver headshell leads
    Isonoe Isolation Feet
    Paul Hynes SR7EHD PSU (plus regulator modules), DCSXL pure-silver DC lead with Jaegar low impedance connector
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable, Airlock plugs - bare wire amp end.
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

  2. #2
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: Surrey

    Posts: 6,143
    I'm Rob.

    Default

    Great write up. I could feel your enthusiasm through your words. Have you listened to Bill Laswell's Ambient translations of Bob Marley? A great CD IMO.
    Buy Bose...And get your parking validated!.

  3. #3
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,256
    I'm Robert.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Puffin View Post
    Great write up. I could feel your enthusiasm through your words. Have you listened to Bill Laswell's Ambient translations of Bob Marley? A great CD IMO.
    Yes, it was a short visit as I say but yeah, hearing his system was a pleasure and a learner....

    I havnt heard that CD Rob but I'll defo check it out - I'm intrigued not to mention a massive Marley fan from childhood - thanks for the headsup
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Modified Technics SL1210 MK5G
    Mike New precision bearing, bearing base plate, ETP Platter
    Micro Seiki MA-202 tonearm, rewired, hybrid ceramic bearings
    Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge
    Yannis Tome 423.5 Silver-Litz tonearm cable with KLEI Pure Silver Harmony plugs
    Ebony armboard
    Audio Technica MS-8 Magnesium headshell, Ortofon pure silver headshell leads
    Isonoe Isolation Feet
    Paul Hynes SR7EHD PSU (plus regulator modules), DCSXL pure-silver DC lead with Jaegar low impedance connector
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable, Airlock plugs - bare wire amp end.
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

  4. #4
    Join Date: Jan 2014

    Location: london se6

    Posts: 224
    I'm Andy.

    Default

    Hi Rob

    Thanks very much for your kind words, it was a pleasure to meet you albeit for such a short time. It was very interesting to hear your comments about the sound as I have not heard any other systems since buying my turntable over 10 years ago and so this has evolved over the years in a bit of a vacuum.

    I like balance, separation and rhythm without any "bloom" or things being too cold or analytical. I like to think I have achieved this but it's very nice to have a second opinion confirming this, as well as rewarding.

    The compact A's came about when I lived in a small room before we bought the house, they have translated quite well so I have never felt the need to change them. Although I have an ongoing Tannoy build which is now 2 years old lol! Due to the size of the room they are quite far apart but I have toed them in which makes a lot of difference to the soundstage etc.

    Everything is second hand except for the OTP phono stage , Linn Classik and MJ acoustics sub which complements the A's very well. I'm very glad you liked the sound, I could see from the way you were moving in time to the music that your appreciative comments were very genuine (not that I don't think you wouldn't give an honest opinion!).

    for those interested my set up is as follows


    Amp duty (and cd) - Linn Classik

    Speakers - Celestion Compact A's

    Sub - MJ Acoustics Reference 100

    Deck - Notts Analogue Intersapce SE ( mahogany version)

    Arm - Rega RB 200 with origin Live brass weight and internal and external wire mods.

    Cart - ZYX Yatra with a 5G Decca weight between it and the Arm head, this helped with the bass and overall tonality, it sounded a bit thin before this was added.

    Phono stage - Firebottle OTP (1) I would say this had a good impact on the sound bringing through more detail in the cart and added sound stage, separation and balance. I'm going to get this upgraded to the OTP 2 in the next few weeks.

    This is fed into the Linn via an NJC Audio headphone amp which has pre outs. As I listen late at night on my HE 400s and therefore so do not have to switch the Linn on

    Speaker wire - Van Damme blue 4 mill

    Interconnects - Various mongrels, silver , copper , non costing more than 30 quid.

    DAC for TV and DVD duty- Beresford Bushmaster 2.

    The Weight looks and feels real nice. My 1st impression is that it has tightened up the sound a bit. I tried it without the mat on the platter but that meant the treble was bit harsh so put it back and it's fine.

    I have been listening to vibes since you left and it looks like it might turn into one of those evenings, especially after 2 G&Ts

    Seeing as you are so close , if you fancy another listen some time let me know and we can coordinate diaries.


    Cheers Andy

  5. #5
    Join Date: Apr 2015

    Location: Central Virginia

    Posts: 1,297
    I'm Russell.

    Default

    Robbie, you have done such a fine job of critiquing Andyís stereo, why donít you become the forumís official reviewer? You could go to other members homes, about once a week, and review their stereos for the forum! I know I would enjoy reading your analysis of everyoneís system. You could come listen to mine if youíre ever in the States? Perhaps youíve found your calling?

    Anyway, I enjoyed your comments on Andyís system, in our daily conversations about our beloved equipment, so often we forget to relay what it really sounds like, which is the part I like reading the most. And looking at the writeup in your description of your own system, that is truly old school! I know it rocks! Iíd love to hear it, itís been many a Moon since Iíve heard a Sansui 919! An amp that started me on my quest for killer stereo!

    Russell

  6. #6
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 48,156
    I'm Grant.

    Default

    He's not slagging mine off

    Only joking rob. Nice write up and seems a great system andy
    Regards,
    Grant ....

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply-doesn't-work
    .... ..... ...... ...... ................... ..... ..... ..... ..... .....
    OPPO BDP-103D DARBEE - JBE SERIES 3/B&O SP1/EMOTIVA XPS1/12V BATTERY - TWIN PRO MONOBLOCK AMPLIFIERS - XIANG SHENG DAC\PRE\HEADPHONE AMP\WE TUBED - TWIN AVANTREE OASIS CLASS 1 BLUETOOTHS - AUDIO TECHNICA ATH-MSR7 & OPPO PM-3 PLANAR HEADPHONES - WIN10, AUDIRVANA 3 PLUS, TIDAL - SMSL M6 MINIDAC - RPI/AUDIOPHONICS/VOLUMIO/5V BATTERY - FULL RANGE TWIN TELEFUNKEN/Q ACOUSTIC BT3/CANTON SUB - P.INSPIRED MAINS REGENERATED.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,256
    I'm Robert.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by alphaGT View Post
    Robbie, you have done such a fine job of critiquing Andy’s stereo, why don’t you become the forum’s official reviewer? You could go to other members homes, about once a week, and review their stereos for the forum! I know I would enjoy reading your analysis of everyone’s system. You could come listen to mine if you’re ever in the States? Perhaps you’ve found your calling?

    Anyway, I enjoyed your comments on Andy’s system, in our daily conversations about our beloved equipment, so often we forget to relay what it really sounds like, which is the part I like reading the most. And looking at the writeup in your description of your own system, that is truly old school! I know it rocks! I’d love to hear it, it’s been many a Moon since I’ve heard a Sansui 919! An amp that started me on my quest for killer stereo!

    Russell
    Bless Russell - Listening to other peoples systems is such a revelation. I dont get to do it much though due to time and other commitments.

    I've only heard a few others but there's always been clear difference in the sonic presentation - no question.

    I was struck with Andy's immediately, for the reasons mentioned.

    I'm a floor standers man, just like the way they look to be honest which is daft but those tiny little Celestions sounded good, natural, musical and really got to the heart of the music, each bass line / note was tuneful and moved the rythm along beautifully.

    Been a huge Marley fan from before he was what I'd call globally famous and more than familiar with the Burnin' album.

    You could really hear inside the music, the recording in that analogue master tape sense and all from this fairly 'moderate' not in your face / showboaty high end type set up - As I say it was a bit of an eye opener for me in that sense.

    The 919 is a beaut' ! but despite being re-built like new, re-capped etc it has been down again with a phono selector niggle causing loss of right channel. These gorgeous things even when completely sorted are like high end classic cars, where these little things might happen from time to time.

    And like a classic car parts have to be sourced from somewhere. Also my top tech friend Angus (Phonomac) is in Northampton and has other hifi related projects on the go as well.

    All of this means things dont happen overnight so the last few years have been painful beyond belief.

    I've indulged in something 'special' recently which has me very very excited indeed and should I hope ease the pain. Cant say just yet but in true AOS style all will be revealed as soon as it arrives in a week or two
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Modified Technics SL1210 MK5G
    Mike New precision bearing, bearing base plate, ETP Platter
    Micro Seiki MA-202 tonearm, rewired, hybrid ceramic bearings
    Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge
    Yannis Tome 423.5 Silver-Litz tonearm cable with KLEI Pure Silver Harmony plugs
    Ebony armboard
    Audio Technica MS-8 Magnesium headshell, Ortofon pure silver headshell leads
    Isonoe Isolation Feet
    Paul Hynes SR7EHD PSU (plus regulator modules), DCSXL pure-silver DC lead with Jaegar low impedance connector
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable, Airlock plugs - bare wire amp end.
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

  8. #8
    Join Date: Apr 2015

    Location: Central Virginia

    Posts: 1,297
    I'm Russell.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieGong View Post
    Bless Russell - Listening to other peoples systems is such a revelation. I dont get to do it much though due to time and other commitments.

    I've only heard a few others but there's always been clear difference in the sonic presentation - no question.

    I was struck with Andy's immediately, for the reasons mentioned.

    I'm a floor standers man, just like the way they look to be honest which is daft but those tiny little Celestions sounded good, natural, musical and really got to the heart of the music, each bass line / note was tuneful and moved the rythm along beautifully.

    Been a huge Marley fan from before he was what I'd call globally famous and more than familiar with the Burnin' album.

    You could really hear inside the music, the recording in that analogue master tape sense and all from this fairly 'moderate' not in your face / showboaty high end type set up - As I say it was a bit of an eye opener for me in that sense.

    The 919 is a beaut' ! but despite being re-built like new, re-capped etc it has been down again with a phono selector niggle causing loss of right channel. These gorgeous things even when completely sorted are like high end classic cars, where these little things might happen from time to time.

    And like a classic car parts have to be sourced from somewhere. Also my top tech friend Angus (Phonomac) is in Northampton and has other hifi related projects on the go as well.

    All of this means things dont happen overnight so the last few years have been painful beyond belief.

    I've indulged in something 'special' recently which has me very very excited indeed and should I hope ease the pain. Cant say just yet but in true AOS style all will be revealed as soon as it arrives in a week or two
    I hear what youíre saying about the clear difference. I too have noticed this myself, while I donít know many people who enjoy high end audio, of the systems Iíve experienced they are all very different. And most were excellent! And it begs the question, how can they all be so different and all be so right? One would think that the search for the holy grail in sound reproduction would lead us all to the same point? But in fact, it does quite the opposite. And like you I enjoy the differences, it can really make one think.

    Russell

  9. #9
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 80,987
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Brilliant stuff, Rob. Always great to hear about little get togethers like this, as it grows the AoS community!

    I agree with Russell - you provided a succinct and insightful appraisal of Andy's system, which made for interesting reading. All that was missing was a few pics!

    Perhaps you could now invite Chris back to yours for a return session?

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

    BE HAPPY EVERYDAY!

  10. #10
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,256
    I'm Robert.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Brilliant stuff, Rob. Always great to hear about little get togethers like this, as it grows the AoS community!

    I agree with Russell - you provided a succinct and insightful appraisal of Andy's system, which made for interesting reading. All that was missing was a few pics!

    Perhaps you could now invite Chris back to yours for a return session?

    Marco.
    I agree Marco, Andy might be able to upload some pics of his set up.

    Will defo do the return session by me and take pics then as well

    I'm without sounds for a few months now again but I'm hoping to back up and running soon.

    I'll also be trying a couple of mats you'll be glad to know and once I'm settled I'll get some long overdue listening / evaluation done and feedback
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Modified Technics SL1210 MK5G
    Mike New precision bearing, bearing base plate, ETP Platter
    Micro Seiki MA-202 tonearm, rewired, hybrid ceramic bearings
    Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge
    Yannis Tome 423.5 Silver-Litz tonearm cable with KLEI Pure Silver Harmony plugs
    Ebony armboard
    Audio Technica MS-8 Magnesium headshell, Ortofon pure silver headshell leads
    Isonoe Isolation Feet
    Paul Hynes SR7EHD PSU (plus regulator modules), DCSXL pure-silver DC lead with Jaegar low impedance connector
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable, Airlock plugs - bare wire amp end.
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

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