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    Magico M9

    Below is an expensive Persian carpet. It is thin and refined but not very good in absorbing sound. On top is a standard thick carpet you can find in IKEA, it is much cheaper and can protect in the expensive one below, more importantly, it is effective in absorbing sound.
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    I like Grand Master more. It doesn’t mean Etsuro Gold is not good but Grand Master is just a little more natural.
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    Etsuro Gold MC Cartridge in house

    The turntable is TechDAS Air Force Zero and it is original version SAT tonearm on the right.
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    New SME Flagship Model 60

    Less user friendly means less business. This is not a great business model.
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    Record weight for Techdas AF3P

    The TechDAS disc stabiliser is no good, the tungsten ultimate is very good and very expensive. I have tried them all. After trying a lot of different weights, I designed and manufactured my own. It is better than anything in the market at a fraction of the price...
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    It is human behaviour to doubt a new technology, particularly when there is nothing wrong with MC cartridges. DS Audio optical cartridge has its disadvantages, such as closed system and limited choice of equalisers. The irony is much of this criticism comes from someone using iPhone which...
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    My Grand Master is mounted on SAT tonearm. After some trial and error, I find Grand Master prefers medium to heavy arms. Although the weight of Grand Master is only 8 gram, its suspension is not tuned to light mass tonearm. I have to add extra weight of the headshell of SAT to increase its...
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    I have tried DS Audio Master 1 and Grand Master with Grand Master equalizer. Grand Master is much better. By natural, it means more real, more smooth. Listening to vocal, you feel more realistic, just like the singer in singing in front of you. I don't have much experience with reel to reel...
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    I tend to agree with DDK. Grand Master sounds more natural and tape like than other cartridges that I have. Etsuro Gold is my favorite MC cartridge, it is more lively and more vivid than Grand Master but it cannot beat GM completely. MC cartridge sounds better in upper midrange to treble while...
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    New SME Flagship Model 60

    I was told by local dealer that SME has invited dealers around the world to go to UK for the launch premiere event of its new flagship Model 60 later this month. So far, no information about Model 60 has been released yet, but it will be available soon.
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    AF3P pump / power supply unit

    Although not exactly related to the topic, it would be helpful for any Air Force user to know the effect of increasing the volume of air reserviors. I have tried to add one litre lab bottles to my AF1P. The air pressures used in Air Force both in vacuum and float are fairly small. There is no...
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    I was told the official announcement of Apex upgrade is scheduled on the end of February
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    Reality is Cruel : Cybershaft new Ultimate OCXO 10M Clocks Shootout OP20 vs OP17

    No fixed answer. It is system dependent and our personal preferences are different. You have to try different settings out.
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    Reality is Cruel : Cybershaft new Ultimate OCXO 10M Clocks Shootout OP20 vs OP17

    It will not cause any damage by switching between 50 and 75 ohm. The worst that can happen is doesn’t lock to the external clock. No harm done trying different settings.
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    Reality is Cruel : Cybershaft new Ultimate OCXO 10M Clocks Shootout OP20 vs OP17

    The test was performed with OP20 and OP21 all set to high output and at 75 ohm. I agree it gives a more dynamic sound. This setting was my favorite one for some time, but recently I switched to 50 ohm and low. The sound is more refined and smoother. It is personal preference and system...
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    The latest unofficial news is Apex upgrade involves the hardware change to a new DAC chipset and its analog board. It comes with a price of around US$8600. Apex probably uses the chipset from the new flagship Dorvak.
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    Got this from a friend in Europe. I have no idea what APEX is all about.
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    Nagra Debuts its New Reference Anniversary Turntable/Tonearm Record Playback System

    i was in the dealer showroom when Reference Anniversary was installed. Although not able to listen to it careful since it was not fully setup, I had an idea about its make and sound. This turntable is beautifully made, typical Swiss product. Every line and angle is accurate and precised. The...
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    No one outside dCS has listened to Dvorak yet. I can also assume it is significantly better than Vivaldi which was developed nearly 10 year ago. There is very little information about the spec so far. The framework is ready. Details will be finalised and is subjected to changes.
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    The Dvorak controller is like Vivaldi upsampler. It is a network bridge. Vivaldi transport can be used with Dvorak. There is a problem in sourcing a high quality SACD/CD transport mechanism, so they have to wait and see.
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    Breaking news from DCS….

    The Vivaldi replacement is called Dvorak. It has monoblock DAC's which comes with a controller and a clock. No CD transport to begin with. Everything is ready. dCS is waiting for the right moment to launch.
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    Have you tried to swap your hand on the DS Audio DS Master 1 equalizer? When I touch or swap my Grand Master equalizer, there is "pop" sound coming from the speakers. I wonder if it is the same with Master 1. It seems to do with static electricity.
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    My journey to Zero

    I think they stacked the major components together just for the video taking. The drive bent and air pipes were not fitted. It is fairly difficult to install Air Force Zero with supporting rack right against the back wall. There are many air pipes and electric connections at the back of the...
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    Anti Skating?

    When I was new to vinyl, an old master in turntable setup friend told me to use only a little antiskate force for 9 inch tonearm and can largely avoid using any for 12 inch arm. It is my guide for many years and seems to be correct all along.
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    DS Audio Grand Master + EMM Labs DS-EQ1

    My Grand Master has been retipped. After 5 weeks, it has returned, the dealer said the usual time for retipping is 8 weeks. He has been pushing all along to make sure it is back before Christmas. I am very grateful for him not only for the “speedy” repair but he also lent me a Master 1...
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    Power cord comparison: Nordost Odin Gold vs CrystalConnect da Vinci vs Argento Audio EE

    Gold has a warmer sound, no doubt about it. The problem with gold on the connector is the durability. After a few insertions, the gold plating will wear away. The only way to enhance the durability is to make sure the connectors on both sides are gold plated, but it will still wear away after a...
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    Power cord comparison: Nordost Odin Gold vs CrystalConnect da Vinci vs Argento Audio EE

    They can burn in the cables with Vidar II but not for power cords. It requires them to be connected on a equipment and play for a few weeks. Most dealers can’t burn in PC enough before demo. I know that from my personal experience. That’s why I bring it up to remind you. The Gold PC is better...
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    Power cord comparison: Nordost Odin Gold vs CrystalConnect da Vinci vs Argento Audio EE

    It takes a few weeks for Odin Gold power cord to burn in and really performs to its best. I agree PC is most influential, SC to follow then IC. Most systems only use one pair of SC, it is the most “cost effective” way of upgrade. It takes a lot more power cords to fully loaded up a system. I...
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    turntables; high level anti-resonance----active (Herzan) platforms, Minus K, air bladder (Stacore) platforms, or others?

    The standard power supply inside Herzan TS-140/150 is switching. There is an option from Herzan to allow external power supply. What I did in my TS-150 was to connect a DC wire to the mother board, bypass the original power supply. A high quality linear 12V supply is used to drive it. The...
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    turntables; high level anti-resonance----active (Herzan) platforms, Minus K, air bladder (Stacore) platforms, or others?

    The main reason why audiophiles don't like switching power supply is it pollutes the power grid. The performance of the isolator is not affected by the switching or linear power supply but a polluted power grid will affect the whole system and degrades the sound.

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