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#305734 - 05/09/10 11:30 PM Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure
grunt Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/04/06
Posts: 3569
Loc: Nirvana
Well for Sean it might have been more of a Bogus Journey since heís the one who schlepped a good portion of his audio equipment to my place over the course of two days. The result was that Sean and I just spent the last 8 hours or so geeking out on audio stuff.

We set up the equipment (tube preamp, 2xtube amps, Oppo 981 and 2xM80s) in an empty room (Sean has the pictures). Youíll see the room has bare walls with blinds as window treatments. We listened to a lot of different stuff we both brought but Iím only going to list what I remember of mine:

Pink Floyd - Dark Side of The Moon SACD
Bangles - SACD
Boston - SACD
Vivaldi - The Four Seasons: Spring SACD
Carl Orff Carmina Burana: Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi SACD
Bliss - Quite Letters
Nena - Nena
Dire Straits - On Every Street
The Manhattan Transfer - The Definitive Pop Collection

Iíll try to just hit some highlights. Seanís tube amps worked flawlessly and sounded great with the M80s. I canít comment on tube vs . . . since we didnít use anything else. With nothing absorbing sound in the room the ambience was fantastic and only occasionally did certain bass frequencies sound either overbearing or rumbling. I found the folding chairs I had were to high and we both ended up sitting on the floor for a better presentation.

I knew of certain tracks with distinctive sibilance (Bliss had one) and listened for that. It was noticeable and IMO enhanced by the room. We also demoed that track with my Sennheiser 600s and while the sibilance was still there it was less noticeable. Later we demoed that track in my HT room and the curtains also seemed to lessen the sibilance.

We tried two different version of Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi and though we were comparing two completely different presentations the SACD version did seem both more articulate and dynamic to me.

The real stand out was The Manhattan Transferís ďA Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square. A simple A Cappella piece that sounded so 3d it was freaky. I think Sean nailed it when he said it seemed like you could reach out and touch it.

We took a quick break for some Panda Express (time was factor) and then migrated to the HT room where we set up again (Seanís tube preamp, Odyssey amp, 2xM80s and 2xSeans Odyssey ? Speakers, Oppo 981 and an A/B switcher.

Oops ran out of space on this page and have some Panda Express to finish, back soon. ;\)

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#305762 - 05/10/10 09:00 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: grunt]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
It was a very fun day for audio geekery! I'll post some pics and my thoughts later today after I get home from work.
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"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#305765 - 05/10/10 09:03 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: St_PatGuy]
medic8r Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6469
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
Mmm, a double dose of pandas. Eating endangered animals is always the funnest.
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Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica.

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#305767 - 05/10/10 09:10 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: medic8r]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 11437
Loc: Central NH
(deleted by me because I must be drunk this morning)


Edited by MarkSJohnson (05/10/10 09:14 AM)
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#305771 - 05/10/10 09:24 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: MarkSJohnson]
medic8r Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6469
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
Looks like someone has a case of the Mondays!


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Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica.

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#305772 - 05/10/10 09:25 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: medic8r]
medic8r Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6469
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
We have achieved derailment.
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Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica.

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#305775 - 05/10/10 09:36 AM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: medic8r]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
That was quick.

\:D
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"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#305812 - 05/10/10 12:16 PM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: St_PatGuy]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8488
Loc: Tacoma
I like Panda Express.

Looking forward to hearing more from both of you!
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#305927 - 05/10/10 10:27 PM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: grunt]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Like Dean said, we first set up everything in his empty room. Here's a pic:




Overall, the room wasn't that bad at all as bare as the walls were. It wasn't entirely rectangular, the wall behind us had an angle into the room where the door was and there was a cathedral ceiling, which probably help tame some of the reflections. We did find, however, that if we pushed the volume a little too hard the room got easily overloaded. The bass wasn't bad at all in the room. Dean will have to provide the dimensions. There were moments where it honked at us a bit, but, for the most part, it was evenly balanced.

Dean and I traded off on listening to CDs. The Manhattan Transfer song was a very nice highlight. Their voices really did float out into the room and had a palpable aspect to them. Very nice indeed.

And, I must say, my Weezer "Maladroit" sounded the worst (sorry JP). It was muffled and jumbled. Really hard to separate anything out of the mix. It's a fun CD and I like it, though.

Like Dean mentioned, we had two different copies of Carmina Burana. Mine was this version and it did sound a little flat compared to Dean's SACD version (no link \:\( ).

After lunch we moved some of the stuff into Dean's theater room. We took his M80s and my Odyssey Loreleis along with the tube preamp, Oppo, and Odyssey Khartago amp and ran the speakers to a switch box--which, sadly, only has impedance matching, but no volume matching capabilities. Yeah, okay, so I'm cheap!!

Here's some pics:





Again, we took turns selecting music, while alternating working the switch box and sitting in the sweet spot. Never mind those pics up there, our first orientation had the Odysseys on the outside and the M80s on the inside. It was easily obvious which speakers were playing as we switched back and forth. Honestly, we weren't going for a true blind test, but more of a way to get the gist of both speakers by being able to go back and forth instantaneously (well, as long as I didn't keep getting the buttons stuck on the switcher).

As Dean put it, what we got were two diametrically opposed musical presentations. To describe it, I'd say the M80s threw out a sound stage that was convex to the listener (the bubble being closest to us) and the Loreleis were more concave. In this respect, it was easily noticeable which speakers were playing. The M80 sound was very centered and right there and the Loreleis were a couple rows further away with imaging cues to the side. All the music was there, the presentations were just so different.

After a few selections we decided to swap positions of the speakers--and, here, the presentations really evened out. It was stunning the transformation it had on the sound of the M80s. Moving the speakers about a foot further apart really gave them some breathing room and opened up the sound. This time, when we switched back and forth between the two, it was somewhat harder to tell them apart.

I'll continue in another post to give my overall impressions.
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#305928 - 05/10/10 11:09 PM Re: Sean and Deanís Excellent Adventure [Re: St_PatGuy]
Adrian Offline
axiomite

Registered: 12/27/08
Posts: 6884
Loc: It's all about the location.
Cool write up Sean, you guys must have had some fun! If you hadn't have told me those speakers were Odyssey Loreleis(first time I've heard of them), I would have bet money they were Totem speakers.

Totem Columns


Edited by Adrian (05/10/10 11:14 PM)
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