Enjoy the Music.com

Letters To Us

  We always welcome letters to the Review Magazine. Please ask questions to us... and compliment our work if you so choose. We are all here to help you. Simply click here to send us your e-mail. Please note that building this web page takes immense resources in compiling the many e-mails, so am cutting back the update frequency accordingly. We will answer your e-mails on a timely manner of course, they simply might not appear here. Of course what really matters to us is that you...

Enjoy the music,

Steven R. Rochlin


August / September / October 2009

Hi Bill,

I was stunned to realize this was your 120th writing for Enjoy the Music.com. I have been reading and enjoying your writings since the very beginning, and I thank you for having the bravery and guts to keep on "keeping on". I definitely relate to your recent article... Enjoying the music is what it is all about! We easily mix up rock and roll, Brahms 2nd, Ella Fitzgerald, all in one afternoon. We fortunately did the same to our children, and they have their own preferences now. We also tried to expose them to as much live music as possible... Making music is magical, and I wanted them to be part of it all.

Thanks for your work and fun writings... Keep it up! We "old Timers" had a lot of fun with our tubes, kits and learned a lot along the way.

Thank you for sharing,

Eli Rochlin

 

Eli,

Yes, we old timers did have fun with tubes, and are still enjoying their musicality over what one usually obtains with solid state, although they have been getting closer to each other and musical truth over the years. Ah, to be able to return to those days of sitting at some high end emporium such as Clark Johnsen's Listening Studio in Boston, for hours with a knowledgeable owner who enjoyed listening to his systems just as much as me. 

Thanks for the kind remarks.

Bill Gaw


August / September / October 2009

Hi Phil,

I am trying to decide between the Valhalla & the Ultra power cables. In your comprehensive (thank you) review in August of 2007 you wrote "On other tracks, particularly involving guitar music, the Valhallas pulled ahead because the 'accidentals' were somewhat reduced in level." What are "accidentals"? My system is a bit lean in the lower midrange & upper bass. Which power cord would you recommend for me?

Thanks for your time - it is much appreciated,

Chris Stevenson

 

Hi Chris,

By "accidentals" I mean the miscellaneous noises made by the fingers moving around and caught by the microphones - not the tone produced by the strings and soundbox of the guitar. If your system is already a bit lean I think the Ultra would be preferable - it's a bit warmer, although I'm not generally in favor of using cables as tone controls. Cables need some running in time, so try for an extended audition.

Enjoy the music,

Phil Gold


August / September / October 2009

Anthony,

I enjoyed your review of the Dared amp as I have a MP-5 Dared amp in my bedroom and enjoy it very much. I was wondering about the flexibility of the DV-6C. In looking at the pictures am I correct in assuming there is only one input? I was thinking of using it in a two channel mixed movie/music system, but I need two inputs.

Thanks and take care.

Kevin

 

Hi Kevin,

On the back there is an AUX input for use in two-channel mode and to the left of that inputs for five speakers plus a subwoofer. You can than use either the AUX/5.1 mode to switch between two-channel (AUX) or multi channel (5.1). I am glad you are enjoying your Dared MP-5 I really loved the sound of the new DV-6C and was impressed that it came with a price that brings tube magic to home theatre without costing a small fortune.

Thanks and "Enjoy the Music",

Anthony Nicosia


August / September / October 2009

Dear Mr. Faller,

I'm seriously considering the Aperion 6T speakers for a system I'm putting together. I'd be using 4 of them (don't like satellites) plus their matched center channel speaker and 12-inch sub; they sell this as their most expensive 5.1 system. I'll be using this for about 75% music and 25% movies. I found that your review of the 6T speakers is pretty consistent with what I've read elsewhere. I'm just wondering if you've had the opportunity to listen to the Axiom M60 v2 Floorstanding Speakers. These seem similar, have one extra speaker, but appear less substantial (lower weight) and the finishes appear so-so in the photos.

I've had to deal with WAF for years and my Rectilinear III floorstanding speakers from 1975 have been living in the basement. I like full, well-balanced sound with detail and some "bite" but cannot tolerate the destruction of my ears by getting zapped with lots of high midrange and sizzling treble power. Detail, yes. Pain, no.

BTW, I'm likely going to use the Onkyo TX-NR906 (black) receiver (145w x 7 @ 6ohms) with the ability of directing the power of channels 6 and 7 to the front mains to double the power for 2-channel (or 2.1) listening.

BTWx2, my listening/viewing room is 18 by 13 and the viewing/listening position will be facing one of the 13-foot walls. (Ceiling is ~9ft). Is this system overkill?

Any thoughts? I appreciate the value of your time and will understand if you are unable to respond.

Regards,

Bart Clark

 

Hi Bart,

Thanks for reading the article on the 6Ts. Though I haven't listened to the M60s, I've heard the little M22s which use the same tweeters. To my ears, the tweeters were fairly harsh and hard to listen to. This has been a number of years ago but I do remember everyone raving about how good they sounded and I simply couldn't understand it.

The 6Ts on the other hand are quite nice. They are revealing without being overbearing. As to your room size, I think the system will do quite well and won't be too much. I use the same system you are thinking about purchasing in a room only slightly larger than yours at 25x12. I too use the Brava 12 sub which is just killer on action movies. When it comes to the finishes on the Aperions, they are flawless. I chose cherry.

I think you'll be quite happy with the Aperion line. Besides, with Aperion you have the 30 day return guarantee if they don't trip your trigger after you have them plugged in.

Hope that helped,

Scott Faller


August / September / October 2009

Hi,

I just read your review of the Ryhtmik F12SE and I am considering two of  these subs or my setup with high-end standmounts reaching 40 hz flat. My setup is 5 channel surround but is mostly used for music (80%).
Would you recommend two of those subs for my usage, mostly music and some HT?

Jan Jakobsen

 

Hey Jan,

It depends on the size of your room. Mine is fairly large, 13' x 20', and one F12SE works fine, it can even be too much on recordings that are already bass-heavy. I did prefer having two F12SEs, it made for a lighter load on their onboard amplifiers, and the overall frequency response was slightly smoother, but the difference between having 1 and 2 in my room ultimately wasn't worth an extra $900 to me. I suppose if I had unlimited cash I would have kept the second unit.

If your room is much larger than mine, if it has large open passageways to other rooms, or if you really like to feel the LFE channel in movies, you might find that having a second F12SE is worth the cost.

I hope that helps

Clarke Robinson


August / September / October 2009

Nels,

In reading "Fun with Bits and Bytes, I came across something that confused me. Could you clarify the statement regarding "being bit perfect"? "After using the MacBook, and learning that iTunes for PC is not bit perfect, the scales started to tip."

Thanks,

David Holman

 

David,

Thanks for your letter. In Windows XP there is a component called the KMixer. The KMixer is a bad thing as it alters the signal. In programs such as JRiver Media Center or Foobar, the KMixer can be bypassed. This is done by downloading and substituting a replacement, such as ASIO4All, a free plug-in.

Unfortunately, iTunes for Windows does not allow the KMixer to be bypassed, therefore the program will alter the signal, a bad thing. Because Apple's operating system OSX does not use a KMixer like component, the signal is not altered.

I hope this clears things up for you.

Nels Ferre


August / September / October 2009

H

Do you still prefer your older an-j to the newer AN-E lexus? I have a chance to buy a very old An-E SP, apparently upgraded with the SPx wires. Just a little worried about the very old chipboard cabinet. the dealer told me it might break if I remove the drivers. Is the chipboard cabinet better than the birchply?

Thanks,

Ho

 

Hi How Meng,

Thanks for your e-mail and yes, still enjoy my SPx speakers. The chipboard should be fine and am sure you will be careful with them.

Enjoy the Music,

Steven R. Rochlin


August / September / October 2009

Steven,

Thanks for the great e-zine, I've been reading it and enjoying it for  years now. I've read with interest your review on the Sonos system. I have used Squeezeboxes since my first Squeezebox-2 years ago. They worked perfectly with my Apple Lossless files for years. Then they released their controller and 7.1 software. The system never worked properly again through months of updates right through 7.3.3 and beta 7.4.

I was so disgusted with the Squeezeboxes and I was reading one incredible review after another on the Sonos. Your review put me over  the edge and I bought the Sonos. I wish I had received the 5 minute call back that every reviewer mentioned! I'm zero for three on call backs in my first few days of ownership. I do still have interference problems that can't be straightened out. I tried customer service and system diagnostics, channels etc. I have to sync only 3 of 4 rooms to avoid trouble. There are still some lock-ups. It is a better system to me than the Squeezebox. The interface and everything is so intuitive and well laid out.

This rambling wasn't even the reason for writing. I didn't go back and re-read the review so maybe you did mention it. I just found out that the Sonos system has a limit of 65,000 tracks. This may seem like a lot but if you've been a music junkie you're whole life it may not be. I would suspect that some of your readers have been collecting CDs their whole life as I have. Having this limit hanging over my head is something I would want to know before buying. People can contact Sonos as I did so that they will hopefully fix this.

I'm at 47,000 or so tracks now. If I put my live (Bands that  authorize recordings) music on there I could put up another 1TB easy. I just thought you might like to let everybody know about the limit. I know it will only be a factor for the biggest music junkies. I think you're readers may be hopelessly addicted to buying new music like me.

Despite all of my recent troubles once you have your collection at your fingertips it's impossible to go back. It's like when you get a Tivo or DVR. You just can't watch t.v. without it anymore.

Thanks again for all the good stuff over the years,

Ronald Padula

 

Ronald,

Thanks for your e-mail and always glad to help. Actually, try the Sonos forums, those guys are on top of things. As for your interference problem, am sure you tried all different wireless channels (1, 6 and 11 as I recall) and whatnot so maybe you need an 'extender' to a get a stronger signal to the box that is giving you troubles. Try Sonos' live chat on Monday when their offices open.

As for the track limit, the guys on the Sonos discussion board already have a workaround :) http://forums.sonos.com/. As for the system being intuitive, yes it is! As my review said, of course getting four 'Transporters' would be high rez, yet the price kept me away. After seeing the Squeezeboxes at various sho0ws and whatnot, for me the Sonos did so much right that it was an easy choice. I can not count how many times when in bed I just reach over without ever opening my eyes and work the remote control to change volume, forward a song, etc. For me, am glad to NOT have another device that demands constant tweaks, software 'upgrades' etc every other month. I mean, when my TV needs firmware upgrades and my cell phone demands two hours of my life after a software upgrade... the Sonos is a refreshing change to all that. It simply works and, as you said, "everything is so intuitive and well laid out." Just wait until you use the Sonos analog inputs to feed you turntable or ??? to other zones :)

Have a wonderful afternoon and if I can ever be of service tag me back via e-mail. Of course in the end what really matters is that you...

Enjoy the Music,

Steven R. Rochlin


August / September / October 2009

Hi,

Read your review of the new Shuguang tubes and am now considering the 
EL34s for my partsconnexion-modded Shanling SP80s. I currently am 
running them with 40's era RCA VT229s and VT231s for the driver/ 
inputs, but am using very nice sounding 70s vintage "Siemens' RFT 
dimple EL34s, which all together make wondrous sound through a set of 
Triangle Naias. It is a warm but detailed sound, with nice delineated 
bass accented by a VonSchwekert small-scale sub set to low gain that 
just barely reinforces the bottom octave. Vocals are very airy and 
mostly natural, but perhaps a very small tad chesty from some upper 
mid creaminess.

I already have extra quads of the "Siemens" and after 5 years am on my 
second set. Do you think that I can get yet more wondrous sound via 
the Treasures? I am concerned about the price and the initial 
roughness that some have reported, but that was apparently reduced via 
a lot of break in time. However the build quality and sonic comments 
read seem like it could be an upgrade.

Also, I have been getting the impression that KT77s also work in lieu 
of EL-34s, and your article refers to KT88s. Are both of these usable 
in my Shanling, and if so, would I need to adjust bias, something that 
I have not yet messed with? I until recently simply had accepted the 
EL34s without much thought, instead concentrating on the 
input/drivers.

All comments welcome if you have the time. I really like Enjoy the Music.com.

John Spinks

 

John,

Thanks for the kind words. They really are appreciated. As far as substituting the EL34 tube in your Shanling amplifiers with another type, I would strongly advise against it. I looked around online and cannot find any documentation stating that you can substitute tube types on your amplifier. KT88's, KT-77's and 6550's would definitely be out. The only tube that you can safely substitute would be the 6CA7, which is basically a "Fat Boy" EL34.

Anytime any of the tubes are replaced, you must set the bias, using the controls on the top panel along with a digital multimeter. Please consult your manual for the exact procedure. Do not be alarmed. It is easy. Bias should be checked on a periodic basis. Bias will drift as the tubes age. After you become accustomed to you amplifiers "in tune" you may be able to hear when the bias needs to be adjusted. I can.

As far as the Treasure Series 6CA7/EL34, I cannot make a confident recommendation, Your tastes differ from mine (I'm not a big fan of the EL34 sound generally.) Also, I have no experience with your current tubes. What I can tell you is that I've not heard one bad thing about the Treasure Series tubes from others that own them, and some say they are better than NOS tubes. Whether or not you will find an improvement, I can't say. To use another analogy, I like my steak rare. You may like yours medium, which I consider overcooked (and well done to me might as well be burned.) Tubes are very much a personal taste thing, just like steak. If you decide to take the plunge, the sound will improve after 300 hours. The reports of break in on these tubes are very real. I paid for the KT-88's- they really are (at least to me) worth every penny.

I hope I was of some assistance.

Nels Ferre


August / September / October 2009

Hi Scott,

E

My dealer here in Victoria B.C. Canada is a huge Audio Note dealer. I just returned the CD1.1x cdp that I demoed for the weekend. The sound is what I am after for Computer audio. You mentioned you had the Audio Note 2.1 dac. Do you think if I purchased the Havana and brought it down to my dealer they would be surprised. Was the sound that close?

To get started, is the Dac and a Mac laptop all I need for playback?

Thanks, Gary

 

Gary,

Sorry its taken so long to get back to you...life happens :-)    Yes, I personally think the Audio Note dealer will be shocked at how good the Havana actually is. Keep in mind, if you decide to go for one, changing the stock tube is an ABSOLUTE must. I harped at Nels Ferre for almost a month and finally sent him a Bendix Red Bank (because I didn't have a spare WE-396a, I highly recommend the WE-396a BTW). When he got the tube he was amazed at how it transformed this little DAC from a nice performer into what I consider to be one of the best NOS DACs on the market (I personally would argue it is THE best but that is a different story).

I think you'll find (once it is broken in and the tube swapped out) that the Havana provides more detail and a larger soundstage than the Audio Note. All this without being colored or "in your face". This little DAC is absolutely top shelf. In fact I got chastised by a speaker manufacturer for not raving about it more than I did in the article. I think he may be right.

...and yes, the Havana and a Mac laptop will be like two peas in a pod if the NOS sound is what you are looking for.

Hope that helps,

Scott Faller


August / September / October 2009

Hi Scott,

I have been reading some reviews and I am looking to purchase some new towers. I am looking at the Aperion 6T and the Axiom M80's. My amp is an Outaw Audio 7700. I noticed you mentioned the amp is really important for the Aperion. Will this amp work well? My speakers will be in a large room 30x15 and I will be about 12 feet from them. I listen to mostly rock (foo fighters, radiohead, led Zeppelin, Eagles, etc.), but my wife listens to mostly female rock singers (she's a vocalist). My sub is a SVS 12plus 2 (two 12" down firing). I am leaning towards the Aperions. I am looking for a speaker that has a nice mid bass/ mid and treble, since I already have a large sub. I listen to Music 70% of the time and HT 30%. I am hoping you have had a chance to audition both and perhaps give my your opinion.

Thanks in advance,

Anthony

 

Hi Anthony,

Though I haven't listened to the M80's I have heard the M22s which uses the same drivers (less the woofers) and crossover point to the tweeters. In my system I found the Aperions to have a much smoother presentation in the highs. The bass on the Aperion 6T goes deep and plays rock quite well. The detail coming from the Aperion is also quite good. The 6Ts will be an easy load for your Outlaw so no worries there.

Again, speaker performance is highly amp and room dependent so YMMV. Good thing Aperion has the 30 day in home trial, that way if it doesn't work in your system, you are only out shipping.

Hope that helps!

Scott Faller


August / September / October 2009

Hey Steven,

I just wanted to tell you how much I've enjoyed the DIY section.

Keep up the good work!

Dan Watanabe

 

Dan,

Many thanks, it is very much appreciated. There may be more good news on the DIY front so keep an eye out for it in the coming weeks. :)

Enjoy the Music,

Steven R. Rochlin


August / September / October 2009

Steven,

I love the new DIY section. That's fantastic! Those of us that have the overwhelming desire to create as much of our own personal audio Utopia as possible, instead of purchasing someone else's will GREATLY benefit from this new section. Kudos to you. Finally, a highly respected site that recognizes us folks willing to get some dirt under the fingernails.

Excellent!

Bob Jackson

 

Hi Bob,

Many thanks for your e-mail and it is greatly appreciated. FYI: dad taught me to solder at the rip ol' age of 5 or so and when I 'grew up' my first 'day job' was working for Heathkit, so building cool stuff is in my blood as it were. So it brings me joy to have a DIY magazine within Enjoy the Music.com and if you care to put pen to paper i would love to have one of your projects featured within the DIY magazine. Are you game?

Enjoy the Music,

Steven R. Rochlin


 

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