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Thread: Phonostage Bake-Off - 08/07/18 - Penkridge *NOW CONFIRMED*

  1. #311
    Join Date: Jul 2018

    Location: London

    Posts: 5
    I'm Stoyan.

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    Thanks, Oliver.
    I will be very happy to see how these cables will match in my set up. At the moment I am looking for an Audio innovations SUT, but sadly I can not find any for sale.

  2. #312
    Join Date: May 2016

    Location: Much Wenlock

    Posts: 675
    I'm Gary.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SAP7 View Post
    Itís not hard to level sound.
    Disagree.

    A bake off should be fun, and not a proper lab test, but you can always reduce the variables and there are loads of free phone apps for sound.
    Last time I looked at phone apps for SPL they were not particularly accurate, repeatable or available with various weightings
    I guess db(C) would have been appropriate, giving Peak Sound Pressue Levels.

    Gary

  3. #313
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Essex

    Posts: 18,446
    I'm openingabottleofwine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    I was at a bake off and there was proper level matching with a level meter on a tripod. On one swap everyone said 'That's louder' about 2 seconds in. Level was checked again with the gubbins and a mistake had been made. It was about 0.5dB louder and we all heard it right away.

    But if you want to do scientific testing you go to a lab, not a bake off.
    That's pretty good going. A 0.5dB change in level is quite subtle:

    https://www.audiocheck.net/blindtests_level.php?lvl=0.5

    But I agree with your final sentence.
    Have you listened to this month's choice in the Album Club?

    Barry

  4. #314
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 6,237
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by audio pills View Post
    Thanks, Oliver.
    I will be very happy to see how these cables will match in my set up. At the moment I am looking for an Audio innovations SUT, but sadly I can not find any for sale.
    They are not very common but do pop up. Have a look on HIFIShark. That where I keep my eyes open if I'm looking for something.

    Shall I add your name to the loan list? I think yes
    Analogue: Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 MK5 tonearm > Ortofon Kontrapunkt b > Bigbottle Jfet MC Valve Phonostage (Telefunken & Tesla Valves)
    Digital: NONE
    Amplification: Nelson Pass DCB1 & Monarchy Audio SM-70 Class A Amplifier
    Cables: Fisual S-Flex Speaker Cable & SPOTFIRE IC Cables & NEW SPOTFIRE Tonearm cable
    Speakers: Pioneer CS-77A

  5. #315
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 21,923
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    That's pretty good going. A 0.5dB change in level is quite subtle:

    https://www.audiocheck.net/blindtests_level.php?lvl=0.5

    .
    I know it is. That's why I think level matching is important in the right context. You can have a fun meet where we all get together and listen to the equipment everyone has brought along, or you can do a serious test with lots of controls. Fudging it somewhere in the middle is pointless and how many AoS members are going to turn up for a day of serious ABX blind testing?
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SLP1200 CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *


    'This is the sort of music I'd be listening to if I was going shopping for a training bra.'

  6. #316
    Join Date: Sep 2012

    Location: Derbyshire

    Posts: 308
    I'm mark.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    I know it is. That's why I think level matching is important in the right context. You can have a fun meet where we all get together and listen to the equipment everyone has brought along, or you can do a serious test with lots of controls. Fudging it somewhere in the middle is pointless and how many AoS members are going to turn up for a day of serious ABX blind testing?
    When your giving scores and saying A is better than B, I think level matching is very important.

    Either have an informal day like the Stoke bake-off, or get serious for at least part of the day.

    From what I've read, I'd be concerned about the high volume too, it's nice to whack it up now and again, but all day at high levels isn't helping anyone. If it was a work environment they'd be earplugs issued !

  7. #317
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 6,237
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DiveDeepDog View Post
    When your giving scores and saying A is better than B, I think level matching is very important.

    Either have an informal day like the Stoke bake-off, or get serious for at least part of the day.

    From what I've read, I'd be concerned about the high volume too, it's nice to whack it up now and again, but all day at high levels isn't helping anyone. If it was a work environment they'd be earplugs issued !
    There were maybe 2 occasions where the volume was too loud in the bake off but that's not too loud full stop. It's too loud compared to the previous track on the same Phonostage

    The other occasions were outside of this when the Urei's were in and once when the JMLabs were in.
    Analogue: Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 MK5 tonearm > Ortofon Kontrapunkt b > Bigbottle Jfet MC Valve Phonostage (Telefunken & Tesla Valves)
    Digital: NONE
    Amplification: Nelson Pass DCB1 & Monarchy Audio SM-70 Class A Amplifier
    Cables: Fisual S-Flex Speaker Cable & SPOTFIRE IC Cables & NEW SPOTFIRE Tonearm cable
    Speakers: Pioneer CS-77A

  8. #318
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 21,923
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DiveDeepDog View Post
    When your giving scores and saying A is better than B, I think level matching is very important.

    Either have an informal day like the Stoke bake-off, or get serious for at least part of the day.

    !
    The scoring was only done out of casual interest. You can't really score hi-fi, All of them sounded very good, no obvious flaws anywhere. I think what people preferred came down mainly to taste in presentation rather than actual quality, although the more expensive stages did have a bit more to them it wasn't a devastating advantage. I thought the Russell and the AQvox were clearly the best, I was in a minority (possibly of one) so there is little consistency once preference comes into it.


    In my view if you want a definitive answer to what's 'The Best' you go on the measurements because they are definable and independent of subjective taste. But we all know we could buy the best measuring phono stage in the world and after a while decide we don't actually like it that much.
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SLP1200 CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *


    'This is the sort of music I'd be listening to if I was going shopping for a training bra.'

  9. #319
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 6,237
    I'm Oliver.

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    I disagree a bit,

    The scoring was done to gauge the opinion of the room and as a way to collate the results from the listening tests.

    Personally, I think the results were accurate to my own opinion so the group got it pretty much spot on, except Macca, who prefered the solid state stuff lol.

    There is a lot being made of the effect of the room and the Volume but in truth, neither were an issue!! This isn't a controlled test by men in lab coats, it was a group of enthusiasts getting together and listening to phonostages and giving an opinion by the form of a vote.

    As much as there is value in the results, as always, until you get something in your own system, you don't know how it's going to sound for sure.

    The results are a pointer to what's available that you may not have heard, after that it up to you what you think.
    Analogue: Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 MK5 tonearm > Ortofon Kontrapunkt b > Bigbottle Jfet MC Valve Phonostage (Telefunken & Tesla Valves)
    Digital: NONE
    Amplification: Nelson Pass DCB1 & Monarchy Audio SM-70 Class A Amplifier
    Cables: Fisual S-Flex Speaker Cable & SPOTFIRE IC Cables & NEW SPOTFIRE Tonearm cable
    Speakers: Pioneer CS-77A

  10. #320
    Join Date: May 2015

    Location: Greece

    Posts: 180
    I'm Panos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigman80 View Post
    ...
    As much as there is value in the results, as always, until you get something in your own system, you don't know how it's going to sound for sure.

    The results are a pointer to what's available that you may not have heard, after that it up to you what you think.
    I have participated in similar bake-offs with phono stages, DACs, etc. IMHO, such bake-offs are more enlightening than reviews by audio journalists, whose objectivity is an unknown.
    Even better (much, much better) is to have a bake-off in one's own system, but this is not always feasible.
    System1: Roksan Xerxes original (HiFi Inspire plinth) with OriginLive DC motor + Audiomods Series5 + MusicMaker III, Marantz CD6005, LAB12 DAC1 SE+, Croft Micro25RSLS + Series7R monoblocks (110W/ea), Harbeth SHL5 Plus 40th Anniv., KEF LS50, LAB12 Gordian, Mark Grant HDX1, Black Cat Red Level Triode, LAB12 Knack MkII

    System 2: Marantz CD6003, Croft SuperMicroII ('R' spec by Croft, Tesla E83CC in phono)+ Series7, Snell Type EII (with bypass caps, new internal wiring, WBT nextgen 0703Cu), Mark Grant HDX1, Atlas Hyper 3.0

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