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Thread: A world first? Passive v active isolation platforms test

  1. #1
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    A world first? Passive v active isolation platforms test

    Currently testing passive Stacore pneumatic spring v passive Minus K BM-8 mechanical spring v active Kuraka E-Mini 450 lab grade piezo electric sensors, plus Shun Mook Giants Diamond Resonators as a little bonus
    A quick resume of my system
    Have wrangled a truly expressive and neutral sound, an acoustic and power grid that is quiet, revealing and neutral
    Every change I make here is immediately exposed as positive or negative
    And my system balance is both full, dense and extended, but w great flow, transparency and imaging
    My previous London apartment in hindsight shown now to be harsh and pinched
    The only area of impvt I've been looking at is reducing the last % of bass bloat/over ripeness, and maybe look at opening up a bit more potentially by controlling flr borne vibrations
    My 18x38/5.5x11.5 roof loft space room is centred within an overall roof span of 35x55/10.5x16.5, new flr fixed on original 1861 Victorian era flr joists
    So if there is going to be an area of weakness in my room, it's flexing/floor borne vibns, from my spkrs, from the house below up thru supporting external walls, and from roof structure warping in windy, rainy conditions
    So, I can truly say having beaten my demons on room acoustics, power, components synergy, cable choice etc, this is my potential final frontier area of investigation (and maybe drain on financial resources LOL)
    So, have acquired the passive mechanical spring Minus K BM-8 which many audiophiles have used successfully under their tts
    The newly released passive pneumatic/CLD hybrid Stacore from Poland
    The Herzan equivalent lab grade active Kuraka E-Mini 450
    And threw in a set of Shun Mook Giants Diamond Resonators resonance management for good measure
    Have come to some fascinating conclusions, indeed this area of trialling has been the most interesting comparing I've done in over two decades of this crazy hobby
    Descriptions to come, and hopefully full photos next wk after Blue58 joins me for essential second opinions/cool perspective
    But I already am certain what works, works best, and also doesn't float my boat
    Will post thoughts soon...
    Trans Fi Salvation tt & Terminator arm, Soundsmith Straingauge SG200 cart/Eera Tentation cdp/Nat Audio Utopia line stage & SE2SE SET monos w.NOS '48 GE tubes/Zu Definitions 4 spkrs w.Duelund caps & Lundahl transformers/Stacore isolation platforms, Symposium Isis rack & Rollerblocks isolation/Sablon Reservas & Elites cbls/Westwick 8kVA balanced pwr, Oyaides dedicated lines w.Furutech US sockets, SR Black fuses, Entreq Silver Tellus grndng.

  2. #2
    Site Founder And Administrator Ron Resnick's Avatar
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    I look forward to reading about the results of the comparison tests!
    Mono and Stereo - Senior Contributing Reviewer

    turntable: American Sound AS-2000 (ordered) tonearm: SME 3012R (to come); cartridge: ZYX Universe Premium X-SB2 or Koetsu Coralstone (TBD)
    tape: Studer A820 Mk II
    phono stage: Aesthetix Io Eclipse with 2 power supplies; line stage: Aesthetix Callisto Eclipse with 2 power supplies; amplifier: VTL MB-750s
    speakers: Gryphon Pendragons
    cables: MasterBuilt Ultra or Cardas Clear Beyond (TBD); power: Benjamin Electric subpanel; Torus AVR60BAL; JPS in-wall wire; Furutech NCF outlets; room: 20' wide X 25' long X 15' tall; treatment: ASC Tube Traps and Tower Slims; tweaks: Shakti Stones, Shun Mooks (Kedar to place)

  3. #3
    I have been in email correspondence with marc, sharing our experiences with active isolation and our thoughts. I shall leave him to reveal the results of his experiments but would like to congratulate him on having found his nirvana.
    Source: Aurender W20, LampizatOr Golden Gate
    Amplification: Audio Research Ref 6, Dan D'agostino momentum stereo amp
    Speakers: Vivid Giya G3

  4. #4
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    Thanks Alvin, and Ron
    Nirvana is an apt description, this is one of these epiphany moments where you again realise "noise is the enemy" more than ever
    I would love to have got more from the Minus K BM-8
    It promises a lot w it's spec on isolation down to <1Hz, and it's reasonable cost
    Active is 2x costlier than Stacore which itself is 2x costlier than Minus K
    Unfortunately the need to preload to its max load capacity meant that I was never able to not have loading material sonic signature present on playback
    I tried 3 slabs of differing materials but to no avail
    All biased the sound negatively
    In addition the need to load the central spring w centre of gravity of component meant I could never QUITE get it right w my assymetric tt (arm pod to one side, motor to another, offset plinth loading), and I had to admit defeat
    Good luck to those who promote it, but could never crack its code
    So, Minus K out
    Shun Mook Giants Diamond Resonators?
    Worked a treat in my previous London apartment, but esp under my 18" sq 165 pound hulk of a balanced power transformer bpt. and even my smaller lighter cdp, bringing a real sense of warmth and bass energy to the fore
    Here in my more neutral expressive space which has truly shown my previous place to be appalling for sound?
    Another miss, but for different reasons
    No install issues, Giants just perfect on paper for my bpt
    And as in London, warmth and bass energy to spare
    But now I'm picking up on a distinct colouration, a lower midband frequency enhancement that imprints on every piece of music
    Euphonic colouration, and not what I need or want here
    Mooks out too
    Next post, Stacore passive v Kuraka active, on both cdp and bpt
    This is where things REALLY get interesting 🤗

  5. #5
    Member Sponsor Addicted to Best!
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    So onto the Kuraka active and Stacore passive
    It so happens that the UK distrib for Minus K, Kuraka and Herzan less than 15 miles from me
    Minus K and Kuraka dropped off w me for relaxed ongoing trial, w message that Kuraka up there w Herzan, and in fact more popular in UK lab situations
    At the same time, I discover Stacore online as Jarek their main man maintains a friendly informative non hard sell presence on WBF
    So, I get a unique chance to a/b the kind of tech that Mike Lavigne and Rockitman have championed for a few years w active Kuraka versus the new kid on the block uber engineered passive Stacore
    Straight a/b of lab grade Karaka piezo electric sensors active v fascinating combination in the Stacore of modern day take on Vibraplane-style pneumatics/mass loaded slate (95kg)/constrained layer CLD/RollerBlock style decoupled slate top platform for added lateral isolation/Stacore secret sauce
    And in effect a comparison of bulletproof isolation to <1Hz in Kuraka v more broadband orientated approach >150Hz w Stacore
    W Minus K and Shun Mooks retired from the field, I had a week w Kuraka active under both cdp and bpt, followed by Stacore from today...

  6. #6
    Addicted to Best! marty's Avatar
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    The suspense is too great! And the answer is.....?

  7. #7
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    Marty Marty Marty LOL
    And your great recent speakers search thread was even worse!
    Nope, I'm going to prolong the torture a while longer 😎
    My next post

  8. #8
    Member Sponsor [WBF Founding Member] Mike Lavigne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marty View Post
    The suspense is too great! And the answer is.....?
    pot, meet kettle.
    Wave Kin. NVS tt, AS-2000 ord. (2) Durand Telos (1-Sapphire) arms, CA Gold Stat, Ort Anna carts, -2- Studer A-820 RTR (1/4" + 1/2").*MSB Select II dac w/33 Femto clock + mono powerbases, SGM serv + (2x) 30 tb NAS. *darT NHB-18NS w/2 phonos, King-Cello. *dart 458 mono blocks. EA MM7. *Equi=tech 10WQ, (10) Abso Fid PC & (2) Evo Acou PC. *Evo Acou 12' TRSC and 8m + 1.25m 'zeel' ic's, *Tripoint Troy Sig + Elite, Entreq Sil Tel + Pos, *Herzan TS-140 & TS-150, Wave Kin. A10 U8's + 2NS, Adona GTX.

  9. #9
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    Mike, you just love an English turn of phrase
    So much for us Brits and Yanks being divided by a common language
    However, I'm not sure my good friend Ron Resnick ever completely got the English way, even after well over a year in our green and pleasant land
    Maybe I was just too tricky for him 🤔

  10. #10
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    Ok, as requested by Marty, and anyone who's had the willpower to stick w me so far
    Last week Kuraka went under the cdp (from its usual place on my Symposium Isis rack, each shelf passively isolated w RollerBlock modules, and together w constrained CLD shelves, an excellent passive isolating system)
    Within a couple of bars of music it was immediately apparent how beneficial active Kuraka isolation was (so much so I felt compelled to PM Mike Lavigne immed)
    Bass grunge cleaned up, leading to less time smear, decluttering the mids and opening up the treble
    Fascinatingly, w less bloat the bass was naturally warmer and more extended but cleaner
    Hard to convey how dramatic this was
    My system if it has a fault is a tendency to being over warm and "ripe" esp w pwrful 211 monoblocks and full range drivers spkrs
    A lot of these issues sorted at a stroke
    And even more fascinatingly, when I switched the Kuraka to under the bpt
    Go figure!
    My supposition is that since my bpt is not overbuilt like some ott audiophile devices, w simply a thin resonant shell and a huge transformer that is mechanically and electrically noisy, calming vibrations to and from it has a greater than expected effect at settling things and allowing a less adulterated flow of power to the whole system
    Or I imagined the whole thing
    Am able to pick up this unit at 50% off ex demo cost, same as Stacore, and had I not heard the Stacore today, I'd happily have written the cheque
    But I did hear the Stacore today
    And I'm not buying the Kuraka...

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