Atma-sphere Updates

As some of you know I have had a few pieces of equipment updated by the Atma-Sphere Crew. I picked them up on the used market. Otherwise, I’d never be able to afford such quality gear.  First would like to say I have never seen a company in which it’s employees take so much pride in their work.  Hats off to Ralph and everyone at Atma-Sphere. Best CS I’ve ever had with any company. And I do mean ever...
   Secondly I have had a pair of M60’s 3.0, and a pair of MA-1’s 3.1 updated to 3.3 versions. Also had Adam Hot Rod my UV-1 to the Hottest UV-1 ever built. A couple friends had MP-3’s updated to 3.3 status also. In each case of the Amps and MP-3’s they came back like a completely different piece of gear.  The updates  are such a difference it’s hard to believe it’s the same piece I dropped off.  The UV-1 was a big difference but not as dramatic. But it is a very simple bare bones circuit.  I would strongly suggest if anyone hasn’t updated to the current model 3.3 you really should. You will not be disappointed in anyway. Especially on the Amps, incredible. Also Ralph gives you a brand new 3 year warranty when you update. Pretty hard to beat that. It’s like having a new system. 
  Simply put the 3.3 update is incredible. Everything sonically is improved. Which makes for a dramatic presentation upgrade. Ralph took great pieces of gear and made them incredibly better. His 3.3 update was the biggest advancement I think he’s had in my opinion.  My MA-1’s will be my forever amps. Now I dream of owning an MP-3. 

Atma-sphere fanboy I am self admitted.... lol
how wonderful!!!! that is a great thing to hear, gear engineered, designed, made, serviced and upgraded by music loving professionals with class :-) enjoy
how wonderful!!!! that is a great thing to hear, gear engineered, designed, made, serviced and upgraded by music loving professionals with class :-) enjoy

Exactly my experiences with Ralph and his products -- 1st. Class and Top Notch in ALL respects!!!  
Not really!  From personal experiences and personal opinion, i honestly think his stuff are misrepresented. I want to add a few notes on this. I personally have his top of the line preamp, the mp1 mk3.3. i have to say it’s an excellent unit. The only complaint i have is that his phono section is Noisy As Hell!   Something to think about; his Phono section is at a 66db and the line stage is at 13db total of 79db.  Still Not enough gain for my .20mv cart. I am very disappointed!

If its that noisy there may be something wrong with it. We've seen a few cases where the constant current source for a given gain stage was able to oscillate; if that happens it can inject noise into the circuit.
So you might want to contact us about this and see what's up.
Regardless of the  general quality or sound quality of the Atmasphere products I would not touch the stuff because Atmasphere seems to feel it is necessary to denigrate perceived competitors on this forum in a manner which could easily be seen as malicious.Which is probably why some of those types of posts have had to be removed by administrators.I am sure there are more fair minded and gracious producers in the business that are more deserving of our support.
I am sure there are more fair minded and gracious producers in the business that are more deserving of our support.

Nothing could be further from the truth, in my opinion and I believe the opinion of countless other members here.

Throughout the eleven years in which I have been an active participant in this forum my perception has been that Ralph has been far and away the most constructive, informative, helpful, gracious, and gentlemanly member of the industry who has participated here.

And in contrast to countless members here both within and not within the industry, he has just about invariably reacted with great restraint when faced with provocative comments. And if he chooses to respond to your comment, I’m sure his response will serve as an illustration of exactly that.

Disclaimer: I have never owned any of Ralph’s products, and I have no connection with him or his business other than as a member of this forum.

-- Al

Regardless of the general quality or sound quality of the Atmasphere products I would not touch the stuff because Atmasphere seems to feel it is necessary to denigrate perceived competitors on this forum in a manner which could easily be seen as malicious.
@jtgofish Can you point to any of these posts? Believe it or not I specifically avoid this sort of thing; in particular I'm not aware of a company that I perceive as a 'threat'. We do examine market trends to see if we need to respond to them but not individual companies.

Most of my involvement on social media like this site is because I worked for years during and after college servicing consumer electronics. I enjoy troubleshooting so if I do some of that on this site. While I was working in service departments the other thing I learned and enjoy is how to describe technical/engineering concepts into layman's terms. 
Just last night I went to the What's Best forum to the Atmasphere forum. I had come across a story on a cable company called Audio Envy and that story brought back to my memory the A'gon conversation I had with @atmasphere about interconnects. I wanted to see what his customers were saying on WBF, specifically about interconnects.

I have not found anything he mentioned as negative on other brands. He answered questions for me on other brands I am interested in, specifically Benchmark and Luxman, and made recommendations based on the use case I was considering (very long XLR cable runs).

Long story short I am going to do exactly as he suggested to me with the interconnects.  So thank you. 

Ralph has always shown great restraint and goes the extra distance in giving technical explanations to back up just about everything he posts. I think you have the wrong person or you have some axe to grind which is not related to Ralph's participation on these forums. Examples please!
Atmasphere you know very well the comments I am alluding to.Playing dumb just makes you look worse.Yes some of the worst of those comments have been deleted but only because people like me have reported them to the administrators who have then acted correctly and removed them.

Please give us specific examples. These examples neednt still be on this site to be heard. Did he insult some design you hold close to your heart? When you make such a claim I dont think it unreasonable for others to ask for proof or at least a dialogue with specifics.
I will not give examples.That will only give oxygen to those comments and it is not in the best interest of anybody here to do that.Anybody can suffer from a lapse of judgement and suspect that is really what has happened here.People in this business/hobby do tend to get passionate about things and sometimes their enthusiasm can get the better of them.Best just to move on.

Jtgofish, I completely disagree with your statements. I have never heard, or read anything of which your alluding to.  
Atmasphere you know very well the comments I am alluding to.
The only time I can think of was when I saw photos of a product that was held together with hot melt glue internally and commented on it. Such a product when dropped in shipment or the like can easily become a shock and fire hazard. Anyone would be remiss to not comment on something like that, nor (as I later discovered) was I the only one to do so by any means! Its hard to see how such a product could be viewed as a threat. So, no, I don't know to that which you allude. 
Any posts I have seen from Atmasphere appear to be productive and unbiased (no pun intended). I have only seen constructive criticism and comments from him.
stay on the high road you have always been on Ralph. Enjoy the music
We all know Ralph is a complete gentleman on these threads.  The one outlier comment is best ignored as just that.....a distant outlier! Keep it up Ralph! 
I will not give examples.That will only give oxygen to those comments and it is not in the best interest of anybody here to do that.
The overwhelming view of those here - myself included - is that Ralph is one of our most consistently respectful and useful contributors. That shifts the burden of proof for a conflicting claim on you.
Wow! I do not own any of atmosphere's products,however I always enjoy his posts. He always responds truthfully and with an abundance of knowledge. I have never seen him push or advertise his products in threads. I have very little technical knowledge of electronics,and I always learn something by reading Ralph's posts. 
  Sounds like someone has a bee in his bonnet! 

jtgofish, do you happen to have any distant relatives, possibly in Spain, who experienced failed encounters with windmills?  Did you inherit their attitudes?

I can't otherwise understand your singular and unreasonable attacks on AtmaSphere.  Just make a simple tally of comments here by individuals.  Your perspective is overwhelmed by all others.

I have owned AtmaSphere electronics, although many years ago.  My experience was that Ralph bent over backwards to assist me with a couple of problems, even though they were purchased used.  Since then my only association has been reading his replies and comments on sites such as this one.  In my view he is the epitome of knowledge, fairness, and helpfulness, all the while remaining a gentleman.

As others said, I only wish there were more like him in the audio industry. 
Sadly, my financial situation is such that AtmaSphere's products are out of my price range. From everything I have read, both from customers who use his products, and from Ralph's responses to threads reaching across the spectrum of products on this forum, he has shown himself to be gracious and humble when sharing his obvious solid understanding of audio gear. Kinda shocked to see someone being so bitter. And with all the countless bits of evidence to contradict this negativity, I am choosing to keep my feelings about AtmaSphere, Ralph, his team and their product/CS the same. One day, I hope to be the recipient of what so many have described and a great experience.

I have never read anything negative in Ralph's answers on A-gon and another site with an OTL specific area. He has made himself available to the community something I appreciate and respect. Thanks Ralph for everything you give to our community.
I, for one appreciate Ralph's contribution to this forum.  His technical insight is outstanding.  I have never read any response from Ralph that attacked another manufacturer or poster.  He will respond to technical matters in a technical matter.  That is not a negative.  I actually wish more manufacturers would contribute.  But, I can see  why most don't.  Unwarranted attacks.  

Ralph (and his company) are part of a very few that supports their products and will go out of his way to help customers.  He kept his calm when a person attacked him because he didn't supply his schematics.  No company in their right mind supplies schematics of current products.  Too much industry theft out there.  But, Ralph (suffering through the poster's attacks) calmly tried to help the person through his own issues.

I have been to many audio conventions and shows.  Ralph is one of the few that isn't stuck up, doesn't look down on people and will converse.

So, no, I am definitely not buying the complaint.  

There are manufacturers that I will simply no longer purchase equipment from anymore. They don't stand by their older stuff.  I can understand it if parts aren't made or available anymore.  One can warehouse only so much before it isn't cost effective.  I believe the rule for cars is that manufacturers are required to equip spare parts for cars for a certain amount  of years after that model is discontinued.

But to simply say, we don't support a piece of equipment (McIntosh MS 300/750 music servers for example), bu handing it over to a third party, watch that third party go out of business and not help their customers, tells me to stay away from McIntosh.  I know.  This is my choice.   My experience.  But, once burned......  I appreciate McIntosh products and quality.  However, they should have stepped in to assist their customers in this issue.  Instead, they ignored them (us).   not cool.

I have never seen or heard of Atmosphere (Ralph) not supporting their products. old or new..

I have enjoyed your down to earth (layman), insightful with a touch of humor the way you explain things. I too have been trolled by a troll here at agon and consider myself in darn good company as I see someone as knowledgeable as you have also been trolled here.
I want to add to the comments about Ralph and Atma-sphere.
First, my MA-1 amps are a daily joy. There is indeed something magic to the sound, especially when the rest of the system is tuned to the amps. And the system tuned to the room. I cannot say exactly what it is, but the MA-1s add a kind of inner light to the music, very addictive. I have v3.2. Maybe 3.3 would sound even better.
Second, customer support from Ralph and company has been not just good, but outstanding. I always get informative and helpful answers to my mails. On issues concerning the whole system, not just the amps. Even when we don’t agree on all details (e g I think I CAN hear difference between different balanced cables) his views are always interesting and well reasoned, and usually agree with my experience.
My system was built, partly with the help of Ralph, to include Audiokinesis speakers, Aesthetix Io phono stage, Lyra Atlas on a Hanss TT-30, and an Einstein The tube mk2 preamp. Most of it my own idea. The speaker suggestion was from Ralph, and I have not regretted a single day. The amp/speaker matching is maybe the most critical part, to get the most out of the Atma amps.
I am happy to report that all the high quality firms making the products in my system - Lyra, Aesthetix, Audiokinesis, Einstein etc - have offered good support over the years. Yet Ralph is my favorite. Going far beyond "call of duty" and offering advice even though it concerns other products with no profit for Atma-sphere. This is great customer service.
It's been a long time since I posted anything on Audiogon but now feel a need to chime in.  FWIW, I've owned an S30 amp since 2001and an MP3 preamp since 2002.

Zipost; I've had no problem using a Koetsu Jade (0.2 mv) with the MP3.  Plenty of gain and no noise issues and that's with NOS tubes in the phono stage.  The MP1, I believe, has even more gain in the phono stage than the MP3 so it sounds like something is amiss. Why not give Ralph a call and get things straightened out so you can enjoy your MP1 for what it is; one of the best preamps in all of audio.

Jtgofish; I've been reading Ralph's posts forever a decade and I have never seen what you allude to.  In my personal dealings with him he has always courteous and patient and offers exceptional customer service.  I find it disturbing that when asked to provide a single example none is forthcoming.
If you can't find the offending posts then you simply have not looked very hard.Also some of the worst of these comments have been deleted by the administrators.Several others have responded to Atmasphere and cautioned him about these comments and tried to get him to conduct himself in a more reasonable and considered manner.Here is an example of one-
steakster854 posts04-04-2019 5:23am@atmasphere IMHO, from my perspective - years ago, you kind of set the gold standard for the manner in which a manufacturer participates in these discussions. Your knowledge, experience and cordiality has earned enormous respect and appreciation in our community. It would be great if certain dealers followed your example. Yet, the posts in this particular thread appear to be an outlier. Perhaps, you were responding to the OP’s question more as an avid audiophile rather than a manufacturer. This would make perfect sense. With you wearing several hats as a manufacturer, audiophile and musician, it is quite remarkable. Yet, when one manufacturer comments on a competing manufacturer’s product, there is an invisible line that needs to be respected.
And this comment- celander1,479 posts04-04-2019 3:27amRalph, you might want to review all of your posts here besides the first one.
And this one- rsf507528 posts04-04-2019 1:28amAgree with @steakster have always admired Ralph with his very insightful posts but I think he took this thread too far in the wrong direction.
And this one- 04-04-2019 5:21amRalph, it’s understandable to me that you really don’t see what you’re doing in this thread. It’s clear that you’re trying to broaden the OP’s view to include other products. It’s likely that the OP has single-ended connections but that’s not the point: he has stated his preferences and asked for feedback on those TWO preferences from consumers who own those products.

You have systematically attacked [xxxxxx] products out of the gates. To wit
@jtgofish ,
Please give it up.
You are entitled to your opinion, as I am to mine.
And, given that my opinion of Ralph jibes with the majority of posts on this thread, I think whatever you post will not change any minds.
I am sorry it came to this but Atmasphere was just not listening and thought that intruding on a thread about his products the way that he has done to other products might make him see sense and desist from that behaviour.For his own good as much as anything.To his credit he has deleted some of those comments.
I would be happy for this entire thread to be deleted.Hopefully I have made my point.
emulating the imaginary insult or at least exaggerated  to teach a, and from April... as the monk would say put down that rock you have been carrying for miles.... go listen to some good music you enjoy and move on....
If memory serves @jtgofish  is referring to a thread that was started by Roger Modjeski. On that thread Roger made some comments that required correction of fact. Any thread on a site like this is a public interaction; 'intrusion' simply isn't a thing. He didn't like it when I was the one to offer the corrections. I didn't like doing that either, but some of his comments were so far off the mark that I found myself puzzled as to why he made them. I've always had respect for Roger and he's always made good products- proof therefore that he knew what he was doing. This made his comments all the more mysterious to me. 
No.I was not referring to that thread and was not aware of it.Nor did the quotes above from other members relate to it.
If you pm Ralph for a  question not related to his product, he answers you back in less than two hrs, I respect Ralph, I emailed a company , Iam interested buying one of their unit for more than 2k , more than a month now , no response.So I move on, his lost...
Oh- that was from the thread I was originally thinking of when you first posted.

I saw photos online of a product that was held together with hot melt glue internally and commented on it. Such a product when dropped in shipment or the like can easily become a shock and fire hazard. Anyone would be remiss to not comment on something like that, nor (as I later discovered) was I the only one to do so by any means!

Reasonable comment and consistent with Ralph’s professional manner and professionalism.  
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The product in question may well sound great and sound great for many years. Ralph’s comment had nothing to do with the sound quality, owner, builder, circuit design etc... He simply stated that caps should be fastened to the chassis in a manner more secure than hot glue. That is a true and reasonable comment. Right? Hot glue as well as many types of adhesives will fail when put through the rigors of shipping. The owner fires up an amp he just purchased and the now dangling cap(s) holding a lethal amount of voltage can Indeed cause a short leading to a host of outcomes. Shipping companies regularly drop our gear with great shear force being applied to the parts. I once had a bolted down tranny break away on one end due to shipping mishandling. Hot glue or adhesives will not fare well at all.

Please open up your mind and understand the scope and reasonableness of the cautionary statement.
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Jeez, some time ago I asked the community about some recommendations of integrated amp to currently owned speakers. Ralph among others gave me some valuable input and suggestions. Plain english, forthright without judgement or attempt to steer in any particular direction. I appreciated his expertise and knowledge. To this day I pay attention to his posts. Can't  see the criticism of his behavior by gofish as Ralph has always been a gentleman in the posts I've  read.