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Cpt.Issues's picture
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PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Please excuse the mess, and the dodgy print I bought off the monday market for a tenner but I needed something on that wall to add a bit of colour. 
Desk is something I threw together and the right leg of desk was butchered slightly so I could use much shorter interconnects and have yet to replace it with a nice bit of wood.

Desk

The sub is from a previous computer 2.1 system before I brought any hifi so currently looking to replace it with something a bit more fitting with the rest of the system. Rest is as follows:

 Computer with soundcard that supports WASAPI (ripped CDs (FLAC) + Spotify Premium).  Beresford Caiman DAC (toslink + chrimson interconnects).  Roksan Kandy KA-1 MkIII.  B&W 602 S3 (Atacama Nexus 7 stands, QED Silver Anniversary Bi-wire, Airlock Plugs).  Teac T-H3000 MkIII DAB.  Sennheiser HD555 headphones.

It's my first place (rented) detached house / just finished apprenticeship so not a whole load of spare cash at the moment but this system has been worth every penny in my opinion. I spend a considerable amount of time enjoying it and it has come in very handy for the odd houseparty [:)]

Additional pictures:

I should probably invest in a rack someday. The little puc sat on the desk controls the sub:

need rack

Just a bit of an improvement over my previous system [:D]. Also the desk leg bodge.

compare

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Nice! Yes

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

+1 very nice.

Anonymous
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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

I like it. I'm surprised you need a sub with those speakers in what appears to be a small room. I suspect that the Kandy is the ideal sort of amp to use to keep those B&Ws in check. Enjoy Smile

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Thanks guys!

With regards to the sub it is just there to fill in where the speakers can't reach, it is only really noticeable if I turn it off or listen to the same track with headphones.

I think having it on is a bit of a compromise because although it gives a deeper sound, it is noticeably more sluggish than the speakers when it comes to playing frequencies common to both. The bass from the speakers sounds much tighter and more agile but then rolls off whereas the sub keeps going much deeper. The sub also seems to have a favourite band of frequencies where it suddenly gets louder (might be due to its location under the desk/resonating?), whereas the speakers sound much more natural but don't go down as far.

The room is approx 10ft x 13ft so certainly don't need anything any bigger but I'd like the system to be able to go a bit deeper. 

I think the current one was intended primarily for gaming and was part of a 2.1 system connected to the computer via 3.5mm jack, no phase adjustment etc, my train of thought is that by swapping the current sub with a small hifi quality one I'd probably get the sound I'm after? 

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

My set up is PC based with headphones only. I don't see the point in having full sized speakers firing past you sitting at the desk, let alone a subwoofer underneath you. I could well understand that the desk resonates, or you chair or it is down to where you are sitting. But, I would like something like your set up, with a big comfy chair further back into the room to enjoy the speakers more.

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Ah I should probably point out the normal listening position is a bit behind from where the picture is being taken, so about 11ft from the speakers. Your quite right though, when I'm sat at the desk the sweet-spot is undoubtedly behind me as I'm only about 4ft in front of them (tend to pull the keyboard and mouse to edge of desk so that I can sit right back and have my legs straight, the desk is 34" wide which helps), I moved them back to about 6" from the wall and toed them in slightly too since this was taken.

Just out of shot in front of the left speaker is a small alcove leading to a bathroom, the right speaker is next to a wall and then a window, with the speakers set straight, the right speaker sounds louder, I'm assuming because it bounces sound off the wall.

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Yes I would love to have a space like that.

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Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup
igglebert:I like it. I'm surprised you need a sub with those speakers in what appears to be a small room. I suspect that the Kandy is the ideal sort of amp to use to keep those B&Ws in check. Enjoy Smile

Well now I've mass loaded the stands and turned the sub off (your comment provided the inspiration); I'd agree now this particular sub doesn't have much to add and musically its not on par with the rest of the system. Going to leave it wired in though for the watching the odd film, will probably upgrade it to a small decent quality sub at a later date. Smile

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RE: Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Plonked a B&W ASW608 in the corner a couple of months back, crossover set to pick up the sub 50hz and fills in low down quite nicely. Igglebert was right though, certainly wouldn't want anything bigger in this room! 

The main difference I noticed between this sub and the old one is how flat the reponse is in comparison. It sounds "faster", more detailed and the bass goes far lower too, which is nice  Smile

Six months on and I've been pretty chuffed with this 2.1 system. Moving again soon though, next challange: home cinema.. 

 

In the meantime going to upgrade the Caiman with Rubycon caps etc, has anyone had experiance of doing this DIY? 

 

 

 

 

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RE: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

That looks damn cool to me.  No issues with your picture either: breaks the wall up nicely.  What you need up there instead though is a 40" or 50" hung on the wall Biggrin

Anonymous
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RE: Re: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Cpt.Issues wrote:

In the meantime going to upgrade the Caiman with Rubycon caps etc, has anyone had experiance of doing this DIY? 

 

I've not done the caps but I have done the gator board mod which is probably the most straightfoward mod, although removing the old board  which was firmly glued in place was a struggle, as was placing the op-amp into the socket without bending the legs. After this experience though there is no way that I would attempt to replace the caps, far too fiddly. Open your Caiman and have a look inside before you order any parts. 

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RE: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

DM602 S3s now on ebay after lengthly discussion in the local hifi shop the gentleman lent me a pair of RS1s to try over Christmas..

Sounded a little bright/harsh with my setup but a combination of added detail (biggest difference in the highs), less bass 'boom' with a deeper clearer response and smaller size led me to upgrade to the Monitor Audio Silver range.

I then tried a pair of RX1s and found they retained the level of detail which caused me to take an instant liking to the RS1s but less harsh sounding with my setup and give a more balanced sound. The only weird thing I found is that at higher volumes I needed to the put the foam bung in the back to avoid overwhelming bass at first. Considering the RS1s and RX1s are both quite similar and ported at the rear I didn't have to do this with the RS1s. 

The RX1s got a good work out over Christmas (particulary NYE :shifty: ), torqued up the bolt of the back now they've been run in for a bit they sound better now than when I first hooked up them up. Also been able to lower the crossover frequency on the sub which I wasn't expecting to do when downsizing speakers.

RX1s

 

Anonymous
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RE: PC based audio / first time hifi setup

Very nice, i have rx1's with a roksan caspian amp, good synergy between kit. I like your rosewood finish more than my gloss black :cheers:

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