Aesthetix IO

Mar 27, 2016
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Canada
The SL I believe may be more faithful than the Atlas. I keep going back and forth- I love both right now!. The SL is a real contender.

I have rebuilt an Otari MX5050 BII.. partly because it was local, partly for curiosity, partly to challenge myself. I used to run a Tandberg 30 years ago. My expeditions to find a good Studer have evaded me.. one day I hope. The Otari is all gone through with relapped heads I wired the heads direct out with sliver shielded cable and some other tape path mods. A flux magnetic head might be part of the future this winter.

The Otari is built solidly better than many of the other Japanese decks of the era. It was meant to be a light pro deck.

I bought a de Havilland 222 a few months ago and I am building a home brew repro in parallel. Best man wins.

I am not that committed to tape. Too little of a software repertoire and my preference in music does not include classical. So more than half the musical choices I have in the format are mostly not to my taste. Its here and and I "hear" the potential. I am not "reel"fan right now because of the software and expense of the limited choices.
 

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Ron Resnick

Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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All good! Leslie Brooks uses Otaris for all of his work. So they must be very good.

In fact, contact Leslie -- www.AnalogAudioInc.com -- for his tape list!
 
Mar 27, 2016
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Canada
Thanks, Ron.
 

vernonwtx

New Member
Oct 12, 2017
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Sorry, I am late to this conversation.

I have Nakamichi Dragon CT, ZYX Uni II, IO Sign dual power setup (running 68 dB), into Laufer MP64 16 core (as preamp) (ordered waiting on MP64-32, to Canary M500’s toQuintessence Summit speakers.

My thoughts:
- my last pre-upgrade was a Laufer Memory Player (2011 edition, as preamp) that I was trying to improve LP to be better than. I had a Jolida Envoy preamp (JD9 type phono section), with Underwood full mods and cryo Millard CV4004. It bettered my Whest PS.30RDT Special Edition. Interesting there are not reviews of JD9 fully mod compared to more expensive phono's (probably people with different funding capabilities (JD9 $1-2k vs $4-6k)). If I had to go to single unit, I would recommend JD9 with mods, cryo CV4004’s, and great (silver) power cord. IO dual power with stock tubes (same power cords) not much better (don’t jump on me, I record LP to Memory Player 32 bit 192 hz wav files, then can A/B very quickly between files, very easy to identify small differences between items. You test A/B in your room / system before commenting/criticizing..)

- 2015 I upgraded to IO.
* Used cheap silver Chinese cables that gave me same tone as SR PC’s (had full PowerCell and SR PC’s, then BMI Oceanic Statement Special Silver Edition (good upgrade, but decided too much $$ for difference)).
* Rolled lots of tubes, settled on Millard 10M 6922 (beat pinched Valvo CCa (bright), pinched Amp PQ or USN (very nice, as someone else stated on this thread)...), cryo Millard CV4004 in all slots (beat (TF ECC803C=) Tesla ECC83, 10M, Amp/Pope..), TungSol GTB 6NS7 (beat RCA 5692 Red, Ray WGT, RCA 6NS7M...) (cheap tube, surprised synergy, RCA 6NS7M best in Canary’s). In power units, Millard EL34 EF2a (beat TF AEG), GE 7025 (very strong tube, better then expensive PC; or use RCA 7025). Difference rooms/systems... different synergy.

- 2017 upgrade to Laufer MP64 16-core, HUGE improvement, Redbook up’ed to 32-bit 192-hz meeting/beating IO... what to do ??? LOL. Upgraded:
* added WA chips... nice
* Stillpoints LPI with original mat (same performance as Audio Technica AT665BX Disc Stabilizer Mat)
* went from SR Tricon tonearm cable to Silent Source Music Reference Cable (no difference, now thinking Dragon tonearm wire limiting, I go) to (eBay) Aural Harmony DeepSpace Cryo Gold Alloy Wire with Graphene tonearm wire... full run from cartridge pins to RCA’s at IO. Good upgrade. On Aural, I tired ByBee and HF plugs, more detailed, but shifted tone brighter (we tweak to a certain personally preferred tone... system was there, and tweaks moved it.... AAAUUGGHH!!!
* tired Mad Scientists Graphene Contact Enhancer on all connections and tube pins. While it was good on the rest of the system, IO sounded distorted/ too much gain (but may be due to using RCA)... cleaned it all off... AAAUUGGHH!!!
* grounding wires to IO (no difference).... AAAUUGGHH!!!
* different cable from IO to MP64. I have SR Tesla Apex (XLR better... RCA sounded distorted). But on RCA, I tried ByBee and HF plugs (same conclusion) on SR Apex. Then verse Apex, Cerious Graphene Matrix (slightly smaller stage depth), and Nordost Odin (collapsed stage depth(as others online have committed)). Looks like I am staying with SR XLR.
- still in progress:
* I use my SR cables without the MPC’s as I like the darker background. However, I just had my MPC’s upgrade (supposedly better than the Galileo MPC’s), and need to attach and run/burn 10 days.
* I use Isoclean PT-3030 MK II (isolated and balanced transformer) (tried Liebert true sin wave UPS, PS Audio Power Plant 5, SR PowerCell... none of these affected sound at all) and it made big improvement in sound. I recently added some Isoclean Super Focus Power cords on the amps... while it did not change tone (good!) it definitely improved focus of instruments on stage. Going to try on IO next, and expecting good results.
* try Odin power cord that I have access to

- waiting on MP64 32-core. I expect to push digital further... bettering IO again.... what to do? LOL
* get out of analog... not likely... not yet
* change phono... after I when the lotto... was thinking about CH, Abosulare and Tenor... glad to hear IO holding up
* Change Dragon tonearm to SME V. Definitely on my upgrade list.
* try Shun Mook Mpingo disc (definitely), Mook or Dalby LP weight (probably), Mook footer (probably not... later?)
* do Ecilpse upgrade... may have my tech just upgrade to Stealth caps... (probably not)

Side note: sometimes reading what you guys have, spent, makes me think you guys are really well off (and I appreciate all the info you guys share). But writing this, I can say God has blessed me to play with audio toys too.

Anyway, thanks for reading my IO saga. Any thoughts or comments appreciated.

Regards, Vernon.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
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Hi Vernon, thanks for sharing your experience. the Mook footers are magic. Btw I have the Dalby record weight for sale. It is 4400 GBP, will sell at 2k euro
 

BruceD

VIP/Donor
Dec 13, 2013
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The Dalby is “better” right, Mr. D?
There is enough raging Typhoons and Hurricanes about to unleash unbridled fury on the Planet:(

We don't need to create another one here--I think you get my drift--no?

so I'll sound off with a categoric Yes! to your Q' :)

BruceD
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
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I think Tang was trying to clarify that by "it" you meant the Dalby (which is what I think you did)
 
Apr 27, 2014
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Orchard Lake, MI
Hey Vernon, are you talking new reissue tubes or vintage NOS. Mullard cv4004 vintage short plate are expensive. Tungsol 6SN7 GTB in tall glass or short glass. Mullard EL-34 is the Xf2 not ef2a.
 

vernonwtx

New Member
Oct 12, 2017
4
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NOS tubes.
Upscale Audio NOS cyro Mullard CV4004 premium matched pair in 2017 $400/pair. They only list singles now at $188 ea. Getting harder to find.
GTB tall glass.
On EL34, typo on my part (sorry). XF2-a has 2 getter rings at the top, while XF2-b has only 1 getter ring.
 

vernonwtx

New Member
Oct 12, 2017
4
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I wanted to expand something I said. The modified Jolida Envoy matched the stock tubed IO Sign dual power ONLY when the Jolida had the BMI Oceanic PC’s and the IO had the cheap Chinese silver PC’s. BMI Oceanic on the IO took it up to a whole different level (very good, but at $2k ea used = $4k… try the GE 7025’s in the power boxes first).

This hobby takes us on a funny/expense educational path:
• base Envoy preamp $1k, tubes $500, mod +$2k, used BMI Oceanic PC $2k = $5,500
• used IO Signature with fresh stock tubes + $100 PC’s = $5,100 (what I paid in 2015)
I would never have paid $5k for a phono when I started down this analog path, but here I am LOL, and looks like I am going further.