BDR Cones for SS Amp


Thanks to Millercarbon, from whom I’ve learned a lot by paying attention to his content, I decided to try BDR Mk3 cones on my SS amp. I have a modest system that I thoroughly enjoy, and I like trying different tweaks to experience what might sound “better” to me. I have a Rega Elex-R amp, Tavish Vintage phono preamp, Rega RP8 TT, Hana SL cartridge, ML Motion 40i speakers, mid grade AudioQuest interconnects, and Blue Jeans Belden gray cables. I built a very solid hardwood table for all that stuff, and it sits on some vibration control pads. I also have a dedicated 20 amp circuit and some power conditioning.

I removed the four rubber feet from the Rega amp and replaced them with three BDR cones, two in the back and one I. The middle front. The difference in sound really surprised me - it’s a huge positive difference and not subtle. The wife cliche is real - she has two left ears and told me she could hear instruments she couldn’t hear before, and the system sounded “much clearer.” We listened to Dire Straits Love Over Gold, First Aid Kit Stay Gold, and Mahler 5, all on vinyl. 

All instruments and voices became clearer and more precise, but somehow softer and less hard edged. There was distinctly more separation and positioning in space, and the background was noticeably quieter. Vocals became more prominent and bass was bigger and deeper but still tight and clear.
Honestly, I’m very surprised there was so much difference. I didn’t expect it and assumed these things wouldn’t do much. 
My system was pretty clear and had a fair soundstage but was kind of harsh before; now it’s beautifully musical, no harshness at all, and has a greater sense of separation and spatial depth. The only change I made was adding the BDR cones as described.

Thanks to MC and others who recommended BDR cones, my modest system sounds better than ever and I love listening to music!
phasemonger
Hello mijostyn, I can tell you that as a lifelong classical musician, I both know how to listen critically, and know when I’m listening critically (or not). Most of the time I listen critically with my system because I enjoy that. For me it’s interesting and relaxing to dive deep into the sounds and instruments and really hear things. What I’m hearing with the BDR cones is definitely not a result of me listening differently or more critically than usual. 
But - if what you really mean is that there is no objective change with the BDR cones and what I’m hearing is confirmation bias - well, you may be right. I’d have to do all sorts of elaborate and expensive tests to try to prove to you it’s not confirmation bias, and unlike listening critically, that’s not interesting to me. 
Is there an objective difference with BDR cones? I don’t know, I’m not going to pretend I know, and I easily concede to you the whole thing may be confirmation bias. If so, I’m happy with this confirmation bias because from my couch in my house, my music sounds better and I’m enjoying my system more! Music is good!


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And in the end that is all that matters. Happy Listening 🎶