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Nearly there - just need speakers, stands and cables - suggestions?

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Pezerinno, Apr 16, 2005.

  1. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Hi, I'm after you opinions on what I should demo speaker wise and what cables I need as well as speaker stands and a rack.

    So far I have a denon 1910 dvd player as a transport and a TAG 20 dac with an arcam FMJ A32 amp.

    I want some bookshelve speakers but don't have much money so would like to go second hand. I have a budget of £800 for speakers, speaker stands, cables and a rack of some kind.

    If possible I would like the speakers to look fairly attractive, or at least not pig ugly :thumbsup:

    I want a rack that would house the dvd player, dac, amp and freeview pvr as well as room on top for a 26" LCD of which the measurements are:

    Panel is 663mm wide
    table top stand is 517mm wide and 279mm deep

    CJROSS mentioned in another thread about the ikea rack which I think was about £40-£50.

    As for the speaker stands the nexus ones look quite good value at around £50 but I guess it depends on what speakers I get?

    Not sure about cables? Not actually sure what ones I need. I have all the video cabling already and a fairly good quality optical cable for the freeview PVR to the dac and a good coaxial cable for the dvd player to the dac but what other cables do I need? Also I would quite like, although I'm not sure if this is possible, but to link the sound from the tv to either the dac or the A32 amp just in case i ever get spouts of lousy reception and have to switch from freeview to analogue. (not sure if that made sense?)

    Anyway all suggestions welcome :)

    Thanks, Nick.
     
  2. Paul Williams

    Paul Williams
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    Hi Nick25

    speaker recommendations are the most difficult to make as there are to many factors which affect the sound, especially those of the room itself. Also you really need to specify types of music and the type of sound you prefer. I listen mostly to jazz and vocal music; have a dislike for deep base (even if it is realistic) dislike extended top frequencies (so don’t mind if the spec’ doesn’t go beyond 20kHZ) but vocal purity is an absolute must. I really like the stuff coming from Revolver. Especially as they do cloth covered cabinets (grey/silver, burgundy, black) as an option which is less expensive than an all-wood veneered unit and looks good in the living room. I use the R33’s but they do a smaller R16 which is balanced to be used closer to the wall.

    http://www.revolveraudio.co.uk/

    However they don’t advertise in any Mags and only have a limited number of stockist .Send them an email they are really helpful.

    As for cables I like the IXOS XHS756 a bargain at £4 per bi-wire metre from Hifibitz even if a bit of a pain to terminate!

    http://www.hifibitz.co.uk/product.asp?id=729

    Paul
     
  3. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Thanks for the reply Paul. I listen to all types of music really although mostly rock/alternative/punk genre. Over the summer the system will be in my bedroom which measures (off my head) 15ftx11ft but its really for my flat up in Bristol which will be bigger.

    Would you suggest buying different power cables? Looking at these cables some seem to be rediculously expensive! especially if I need a power cable for each device.

    Have to admit never heard of this revolver company but then I'm new to all this anyway.
     
  4. Paul Williams

    Paul Williams
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    I have been tempted - have tried a few and found in all instances they either do nothing or reduce air and transparency in the sound. I will be looking at some screened mains cables, but only due to my inability to separate mains and signal cables and I get occasional breakthrough interference. The only thing I feel I'd like to try is a mains regeneration unit and work forward from there, but that’s even more expensive. :suicide:

    Paul
     
  5. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    What cables do I need to connect the dac to the amp?
     
  6. andyAV

    andyAV
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    Nick

    To connect dac to amp you need some RCA terminated audio leads (and the same for telly to amp if the telly has audio out on phonos). Try the Mark Grant cables (search these forums). I've no hesitation plugging Marks cables - having gone from £50+ cables to Marks £25 cables all round and lost nothing in the sound what so ever.

    As for speaker cables - again search the forums for Cat5 cables - a number of the members on the forums really rate them - not that they beat £50/m cables - just that they are as good and cost a lot less (around £1/m). That way you get more cash to spend on the speakers themselves which IMHO is one of the key parts of the system. Also if you don't like them you won't have blown the budget on a waste of wires.

    WRT speakers, personally I've always likes the Kef sound with Arcam kit and I listen to rock and folk and a bit of harder rock/metal (though I've now moved to Rotel but kept the Kefs). I'd be strongly tempted to audition any speakers though if you can with the A32 especially if you're planning to spend a significant portion of your budget on the speakers so you're not dissapointed with any mismatch.

    Andy
     
  7. CJROSS

    CJROSS
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    Hey Nick, So you landed that A32, nice one (I aslo take it you got the DAC then ? tut tut and there was me having sleepless nights about you getting it)

    Anyway now on the home run of speakers, Not sure of your budget dude, but cable wise where is what I would do if I was you : Go to Maplins and check out Van Damme Blue Series speaker cable 2x2.5mm2 costs £1.99 a metre and is an excellent cable. Also consider the DIY options mentioned above, Ive long used CAT5 great cheap solution, but if DIY is a no-no go for the VD 2x2.5mm. ICs wise just buy a set from Mark Grant on these forums, he make very good spec cables for not much. Or make your own.

    Speakers, now you have the TAG-Arcam combo, the speakers I would check out would be Dynaudios 1.3 Mk IIs, these can be had with stands for £600-800, Ive seen a couple of users of that Amp using DAC 20s, and Dyn 1.3s. Very highly thought of and they work well with that combo of yours, also consider Totem loudspeakers.

    BTW Racks, it’s a purely personal thing, but you can spend a lot of money on racks that don’t do diddly squat sonically IMHO, you can also spend a lot of money to get a rack that your good lady likes visually for the front room (I know this feeling), or you can spend the maximum on your components and use a cheap solution, I mentioned Ikea before because they off some stunning bargains rack wise, so good in fact Ive set up my second system on Corras-Lack Bookshelves you can check out my system pics.

    http://www.ikea.com/webapp/wcs/stor...=7&langId=-20&catalogId=10101&productId=11149 Oppli TV Large Bench £55

    http://www.ikea.com/webapp/wcs/stor...=7&langId=-20&catalogId=10101&productId=15656 Oppli Small TV Bench £39

    http://www.ikea.com/webapp/wcs/stor...=7&langId=-20&catalogId=10101&productId=11460 Corras Bedside Cabinet £19

    Good luck, ps that looks like a very nice system your assembling there. Very nice.
     
  8. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Thanks CJ, my parents have been away for a couple of days so I couldn't get in contact with them about the dac, I'm sure they would have picked it up. They return tomorrow so will give them a ring.

    There seem to be some cracking reviews of the dynaudios 1.3 mkII although I'm failing to find any for sale atm, hopefully given time I'll be able to. Also heard good reviews about the Totem rainmaker (although not sure how much these are).

    Thanks for the ikea links - the large one would be too large. The smaller one looks a good size for the tv to go on top but not enough room for the four 'boxes'. Maybe the answer would be to go for those two bedside cabinets next to each other.

    I'm still a little confused about what interconnects I need (being a bit dumb!)

    Thanks again. Nick.
     
  9. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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  10. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    Not giving you much choice here, but the first speakers I'd recommend are the Dynaudio Contours. I'd look at the 1.1s as well as the 1.3s.
     
  11. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    The audience 52 would certainly be easier on the budget, unless you're referring to the special edition ones? Like the look of that triangle electroacoustics company.

    Trigaaar - I'm glad people are suggesting the same speakers - makes demoing easier!

    Thanks, Nick.
     
  12. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    Personally, I'd buy some used/x-demo. I demoed some used 1.1s at a store in maidenhead. In the end I didn't get them, as my wife doesn't like wood effect speakers, but I like the sound.
     
  13. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Yeah I'm planning on buying used - I just don't have much of a budget! After all I am a student :thumbsdow

    I'm still really confused with the cable situation :confused:

    coax from dvd to dac
    toslink from pvr to dac

    dac to amp - mark grant stereo pair (are these called phono cables??)
    tv to amp or should it be tv to dac? this is if I ever watch anologue tv - same cable as above?

    is it just one set of cables going from dac to amp or one set for each input?

    Do the Van Damme Blue Series speaker cable come with connections on each end? if not what ones do I need?

    Sorry for my ignorance :suicide:
     
  14. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    DT which triangle speakers were you referring to? The Solis?
     
  15. CJROSS

    CJROSS
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    coax from dvd to dac - Yes - Coaxial RCA 75ohm Digital cable
    toslink from pvr to dac - Yes - Toslink Optical cable

    You have these already, I included them in with the DAC. :smashin:

    A set of Mark Grant Stereo ICs, from DAC to Amp (CD Input), this will be for all your digital mediums from the DAC,

    If watching anlg TV - I cant imagine why TBH when you have Freeview digitally.

    Speaker cable comes in "virgin" state, you will need to peel back end and fit bananas : http://www.satcure.co.uk/accs/page13.htm B008 Gold 4mm Banana Plug pair £2.10 - You will need 4 pairs to get going, ie £8.40 worth. You screw these plugs onto the end of your speaker cable

    Nick we all start off at some time dont be afraid to ask dude.
     
  16. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    Are you not particularly pro soldered plugs CJ? Assuming not, are all the plugs in your link above equal in terms of performance, with some just being neater (and more expensive)?
     
  17. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Its just in case the reception drops, mux B (I think its B) isn't too strong for me.

    Thanks for clearing that up.

    By the way I rang my old man tonight and he picked up the dac last week :smashin:
     
  18. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    Just looking for some myself. You'll have to add VAT and p&p.

    Any thoughts on these offerings from ebay?
    E.g. these, these and these.
    About £2/pair for the first two choice, and £3.40/pair for 10 pairs of Milty.
     
  19. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    I tempted to go with cheaper speaker like the dynaudio audience 52 to save some money. There is also so many cd's I want at the moment of which I could buy if I went with cheaper speakers. No point in buying a hifi if you have nothing to play!
     
  20. CJROSS

    CJROSS
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    Trigaar, I have used a few different banana plugs, the Satcure ones are the best ones Ive ever used TBH, they beat Ixos 204s that cost 3X as much. Solidly built, they take large diameter side entry, they are rear stackable (in case you add a sub or biwire), the best part about them is their screw billet, its part of the rear of the plug and you can really screw them down hard on any cable your putting in. I currently use VD 2x2.5mm cable and Im able to feed the cable in the rear of the plug, then screw down rear of plug. These are my IXOS 204s used on my second system with a side entry connection, FYI : I use the Satcure ones straight in the rear of the plug :

    http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y57/CJRHifi/TAF-30ESBinds.jpg

    At the price I don’t think there is much to touch them TBH.

    http://www.satcure.co.uk/accs/images/av00066.jpg
     
  21. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    Indeed there isn't. Looking at the cheaper end (non contour range) it's worth looking at the 42s as well as the 52s, and also at the Quad 11s and 12s.

    Does that apply to the BP100G as well as the B008?
    The only thing putting me off the B008s is that you can't put the cable in the rear of them. Are you saying you can put your cable in the rear? I don't understand how that works, and if QED SA and the like would fit (I have looked at your pics).

    Have you looked at the ebay links I posted? I thought they looked fairly good. I'd rather go with something tried and tested though, but I'd like to have the option of feeding the cable in the rear.
     
  22. CJROSS

    CJROSS
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    Trig, you take back the insulation on the speaker wire by about a 1/2" to reveal copper, insert this thru the screw rear, slightly bend end once thru, then fit over plug main body, screw down on the "bent" section of cable you inserted in.

    HTHs I only have used B008s from SCure
     
  23. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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    Yeah, Solis or Comete Es, depending on your budget etc. Will be difficult demoing though - not many dealers carry them yet.....

    DT
     
  24. Triggaaar

    Triggaaar
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    I've taken all 15 metre of insulation of the wire, and still can't find any copper :rolleyes:

    Ah, I see, thanks. So the bolt section of the plug is hollow, and you can put a cable through it - like these.

    Thanks

    EDIT - in fact, I think the eby ones are the same plug! £6 cheaper for 8 pairs. Apologies if they're not the same plug, but they look identical (CPC also supply the same plugs [AV00065/6] but are more expensive).
     
  25. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Apparently the solis with their stands retail at £1925, I can get them for £1150 delivered but obviously I'd be buying blind. Would I be able to sell for similar money if I didn't get on with them? Is that a good price as they are already over budget.

    Thanks, Nick.
     
  26. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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    It would be foolish to buy blind on the advice of some random bloke on a net forum, wouldn't it? I strongly suggest you spend this weekend looking around and if possible, going to a Triangle dealer to inspect the range up close.

    For a start, the solis has a rear-facing woofer and ports. This would indicate that it might "boom" badly if situated near a wall (assuming you're a student a probably have a small room, this could be a serious issue).

    There are lots of other issues like this that should be considered before purchasing - including listening to them of course! This can be difficult/pointless though, especially if the dealer isn't carrying your amp.

    £1150 is a good price including the stands. These are very well built speakers. I myself would be seriously interested in a pair that price. Who are you buying them from?

    As for resale value, I'd don't think you'd loose out much at that price. You've got a substantial saving anyway.

    DT
     
  27. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    DT saw them here - http://www.ukd.co.uk/

    Apparently they are in very good condition and were sent to one magazine reviewer hence the lowered price. Comes with stands and two year warranty.

    How much should I be looking at spending on second hand Dynaudio Audience 52's?
     
  28. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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    UKD are the distributors, so I guess they know more about them than most! 2 year warranty is also handy. Reviewers generally look after their kit. If it has only been sent to one (HiFi+?) then it should be alright.

    The Dynaudio Audience 52 SE's seem to substantially more expensive than the standard model. You've still got to factor in the cost of stands too (Partington Super Dreadnoughts are about £160 I think).

    There's an auction for some 52's on eBay at the moment: http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=14991&item=5768875266&rd=1

    And some here for their RRP - £650: http://www.movement-audio.co.uk/website/dynaudio/audience-52.htm

    I wouldn't want to pay more than £400 for a used pair.

    DT
     
  29. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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    The triangle Solis is being reviewed in this month's (issue 38) HiFi+. Try & hunt down a copy if you can. Don't worry if they don't give it a screaming recommendation - these guys are extremely hard to please!

    Here is an excerpt from the review: http://www.ukd.co.uk/scms/news-detail.asp?PKID=81

    DT
     
  30. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    Thanks DT, do you actually know the difference between the 52 and 52se apart from the higher price? Although I would probably prefer the contours over the 52se. Also I like the look of the Quad 12L more so than the 52's.

    I think, really, the solis is out of my reach. I could afford it but I feel worried spening that sort of money where as something like £800 I'd feel more comfortable with.
     

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