Best Equipment Stand


I have a rather large system sitting on a less than ideal audio rack.  I'm currently using a  Salamander Synergy series with five shelves (including the bottom) supporting the following components from top to bottom:

1) Michell Gyro SE (turnable);
2) Pass Labs X-Ono (phono pre-amp);
3) Michell power supply (really empty for all intents and purposes;
4) Pass Labs X-1 (pre-amp);
5) Oppo 105 (digital source); and
6) Magnum Dynlab MD-108 (tuner).

On the ground flanking the system I have Pass Labs XA100.8s, Magnepan (2) DWMs and 3.7i.  Everything is on hardwood floors.

The reason I say that it is less than ideal is that foot falls can set the Gyro moving and often cause skipping.  I'm looking for something far more stable (rigid?) than the Salamander.  

Other considerations to keep in mind, first, the floors aren't necessarily level, so being able to adjust the level is important.  Second, including everything in the rack would be nice but not necessarily important.  Third, I would prefer NOT to separate the turntable to another wall or room.  Fourth, cost is a consideration.  I've been scratching the upgrade itch for a while now and have made significant recent investments.  Dedicated outlets, upgraded amps, upgraded audience cabiling and of course lots of music.

With all of this in mind, do you have any recommendations for a better audio racks.  The ultimate goal is making the Gyro as happy as I can.

Thanks,

Tom


tgonzales
How much do you want to spend?
Ideally less than $2k.
Check out Core Audio Designs.  Arnold is a great guy to work with and he can customized component rack to your specific needs. 

http://coreaudiodesigns.com/products/component-racks/

You may end up spending bit more than 2K budget but they are built for life and future expansion possibilities are unlimited.  Last year, Arnold built me a quad 85" wide two level rack, weighing 480 pounds.  It's a work of art! 
I don't think any rack is going to solve a springy floor problem.  Put the table on a wall shelf.  
You simply can't beat solid maple for an audio rack in my opinion. I was very fortunate to work with a good friend who does high end woodwork to design and build my own solid maple rack. It has 4 shelves spaced just right for my gear and is 4' wide so it holds lots of components. If you don't know anyone who can build one for you, I would check out Timber Nation. http://www.timbernation.com/ They can make anything you want. It may not hit your price point but as lalitk said, it is something that is built for life!
Thanks for the recommendation of Core Audio.  Stunningly beautiful which would compliment the Eames chairs that I have in the room.

I agree that a wall shelf would be the best solution.  The bay window to the rear of the room precludes a simple job.  One of the side walls is out of question as well due to fireplace and windows on one side.  The large footprint of the Magnepans plus DWMs makes the other side difficult.

If push comes to shove, I could move the X-Ono and Gyro to the far wall and run a very long XLR to the X-1. I would like to avoid that if I could, but it's not completely out of the question.  The cost of really long Audience 24AU SE XLR may be more than the cost of a good rack.

If I were go the wall shelf route, what would you suggest?
I am a big fan of a wall shelf for your turntable- even with a solid floor. I have had many but currently use a Vulkan Wall shelf from Tiger-Paw audio ( a UK manufacturer ). Best shelf I have ever used by far and would fit your Gyro perfectly. Reasonable pricing as well. Google the manufacturer and the site will lead you to the US supplier. Good luck!
ATB,
Mark

Solid tech Swiss made, avangard looks.
Highly recommended.
Used Symposium rack.

Possibly the springy Gyrodeck suspension and your self-described springy floor are not made for each other.  In addition, no disrespect to the Mitchell, but your system is worthy of a turntable upgrade. You might consider the purchase of an unsuspended turntable which you can then pair with a high quality isolation shelf, like a Vibraplane or Minus K. (You don't want to pair a suspended tt with a second suspension.)  This is worth considering if wall mounting is impractical.  Remember too that wall mounting is not a panacea; strong structural vibrations will be transmitted into a wall mount, too. You might ask an architect to recommend a suitable wall in your home that is relatively isolated from structure-borne forces. In addition, FWIW, I have had good luck with Adona rack systems.  At least they used to be reasonable in cost for very high quality; I don't know where they fit in the cost continuum as of today.  Adding the mass of a heavy rack might help with your footfall problem, or it might not.
Tom, you mention the need to level.  I can understand that for your turntable, but remember that a three legged rack, such as the Star Sound Apprentice is alway with all three feet in contact. Of course the design of all the Star Sound devices is to get the vibration to the floor and to the Earth. They would not be good for foot falls. 

The old Stillpoints component stands and pipes can be used as a two level  rack that is fairly cheap using Ultra Minis. Stillpoint technology is somewhat helpful for footfalls. You would not want to go over two shelfs high, however. 

One thing that I would discourage is wooden shelving. It robs the music even worse than rubber. There always is wall shelving but I've never had any. Vibrations have such substantial impact on fidelity that you really need to consider them.
I would give a call to Star Sound Technologies and see what Robert would recommend in that situation.  I have all Star Sound Sistrum racks, speaker platforms, and amp platforms holding my equipment.  The sound was immediately stunning and the speakers got dramatically better in about 10-14 days.  My speakers were not supposed to be raised off the floor as the designer said it negatively would impact the sound.  Tried it both was several times and I have to say he was wrong--the Star Sound technology is phenominal.  This allowed me to sell off most of my room treatments as they no longer made a difference.   I'm on tile covering cement floor, so it's different, but maybe there's a chance. My former rack was similar to what you have.   I bought almost all of this used on Agon, so my price easily fit your criteria--new, probably not.
There has to be some mechanism for dealing with seismic type vibration. Even the strongest most inflexible design rack will simply transfer the structural vibration very efficiently. In the worst case the rack will amplify the problem. I can appreciate the desire to organize and showcase the system but for the best sound in most cases the components should be placed directly in the floor using, at a minimum, some sort of footers or at best a mass on spring device(s).

I had the same problem with two turntables (Linn LP12 and a nice Rega) in my upstairs room with the hardwood floor. Tried several different racks, still could hear footfalls and the arm would actually jump around on the LP if you trod heavily into the room. So I had to move my system downstairs to my ground floor/basement level big room with concrete slab covered by wall to wall carpeting. Turntable dead silent now even if I "dance" to the music. I really think you will have to use the wall shelf to isolate your TT from the springy floor. Or pour a concrete slab?
I tried a wall mounted shelf one time and found that my walls vibrated as well. I tried hanging the turntable from the ceiling and found it also vibrated. I knew a guy in Chicago who used curb stones for a rack. These are the heavy stone used for curbing in that city. I have no idea how he got them into his room but the system sounded great.
I suppose mass is a key as are points.
Tom, I agree (as others have stated) that if you have a springy floor you are going to need to use a wall rack for your turntable. That wall rack is probably the easiest and least expensive fix. I have a very hard time believing that someone makes a rack that sits on the floor that is going to correct your issue of the turntable.

Is your rack located in a room that has a basement under it? If so, could you add some joist supports under the audio area to reduce the springiness of the floor?
http://cdn1.tmbi.com/TFH/Step-By-Step/FH00APR_BOUNFL_04.JPG

http://www.google.com/search?q=install+support+beam+in+basement&nord=1&biw=2133&bih=1022...

tbg raises a good point above. you won't know if a wall rack will truly work until you try it!

Very good points.  Thank you.

I could move the system downstairs, but this is the first time I have a dedicated room and it's very comfortable.

The joist support and wall rack are probably the best next ideas to explore.

Thank you again for all the great ideas.
On the upgrade of the turntable, I tend to agree.  It is utterly beautiful which shouldn't be a consideration but is.  I really enjoy seeing it.

Not to change the subject at all but the new SME 15A and VPI Classic 4 have been tempting me, but that's much down the road.
I use Quadraspire and it's dandy & strong. 
While I agree that wall shelves are not a panacea and walls do vibrate, it is far less than a springy floor.  The only other thing you might try is to brace the back of the rack against the rear wall with some sort of spacers that could possibly prevent the rack from moving a bit.  It might just give you enough isolation to make your turntable a bit more forgiving of the floor issue.  Maybe. 
+ 1 more for the wall rack.  This will most likely solve your issues.  

One issue with wall racks,  is mounting them.   The Tiger Paw Vulkan,  which I sell,  has mounting holes on 8.5" centers, which means that you can hit one stud,  but not more without 'wall surgery' prior to mounting.   

I designed and almost put into production, a wall rack that mounts on one stud.  It is a great rack, and does not look at all like the standard welded steel tube units which are common.  I did not hit my desired manufacturing price point, so the remainder of the initial run are sitting in storage.  They are great racks,  and the design can be expanded for very large turntables.  It is solid enough to support most any turntable, easily. 



Box Furniture Company. Same guy that makes Devore's speaker cabinets. 

You can also use a very good isolation platform after the stand is leveled. One made of maple preferrably. 

I strongly agree with Star Sound Technologies...It has been several months now that I have added stands and audio points to my speakers and components and I'm still blown away at the results. 


Hi Tom,

A lot of people count out HRS because they think it is too expensive.  One solution would be to purchase a isolation platform $1395 and put it on top of your existing stand.  Although Mike Latvis (designer) doesn't guarantee the result when it comes to foot fall, he will most certainly make every effort to get it working.  (His 30+ years in isolation and damping aerospace engineering doesn't hurt.) The success rate is high.  In addition to improved resistance to foot fall, you will have a dramatically better sound even on your existing Salamander.  If you choose to get a full stand try to get the turntable as close to the floor as possible.  The further away, the further it swings back and forth with the foot fall movement.  If you live close to a platinum dealer, you could possible just take a platform and try it.

Nice system. you may want to consider a long term investment in a quality stand at this point.

Brad
Sales - HRS
www.avisolation.com
I had the same problem with my SOTA Cosmos turntable sitting on a double wide Salamander Synergy rack.  My floor is springy and the turntable has a spring suspension so that every time someone entered the room, the record would skip.  I did not want to deal with a wall-mounted shelf.  After trying a Gingko platform, which did not solve the stability problem, I bought a Symposium Segue ISO platform and three of their Rollerblock Jr. devices.  (I placed a Rollerblock under each of the 'table's feet.)  This has virtually solved the footfall problem and also resulted in improved bass and clarity to my analog rig.  Check out Symposium's products on their website (www.symposiumusa.com).  Customer services is great, the products are extremely well made, and their packaging is just about bulletproof.  I am considering replacing other shelves in my rack with their other platforms.
My solution was both cheap and effective.  However it may not be aesthetically pleasing to everyone.   I used hardware store triangle brackets screwed into wall studs.   My TT rests on a composite shelf made from 2 pieces of 3/4 in birch ply, separated by 1/2 in dense foam sheet.  Total cost was less than $50.

Impervious to footfalls and vibrations.

You could try something like what I described for minimal cost and effort, then determine if the shelf addressed your issues.  If so, then look for a permanent solution that is more aesthetically pleasing.
I've said it before and I'll say it again.  If you're looking around for an inexpensive and effective technique for isolating a component look no further than bungee cords.  You will of course have to find a suitable frame from which to suspend the component.  Then it's only a matter of matching the springiness of the bungee cords.  

My God Geoff, what a great idea! I guess the looser the "spring tension" of the bungee cord (the slower it bounces up and down when pressed upon), the better (a lower resonant frequency, obviously). By the way, what's your opinion on the "sandbox" platforms Barry Kohan at Bright Star used to make?
Bdp24 wrote,

"My God Geoff, what a great idea! I guess the looser the "spring tension" of the bungee cord (the slower it bounces up and down when pressed upon), the better (a lower resonant frequency, obviously). By the way, what’s your opinion on the "sandbox" platforms Barry Kohan at Bright Star used to make?"

I met Barry briefly at CES in ’97, we were sort of competitors, I was showing with Pierre in his Mapleshade room, I had my 0.5 Hz Nimbus stand back then. I used to have his sand filled box but his airspring stand was better. Since my Nimbus only used one airspring as opposed to three that other airspring devices used I got much lower resonant frequencies. Every time you add a spring or airspring you raise the Fr. For bungee cords with very heavy objects they have to be very stiff otherwise they will stretch out all the way to the floor. Same thing for steel compression springs, for heavy objects they have to be very stiff, otherwise they will over compress.