Might be best to try some different interconnects as the T2 speaker cable is reported a "warm" performer as you say. Contact Joe Abrams for recommendations he was very helpful to me: Equusaudio@aol.com
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An inexpensive and effective but very neutral power conditioner, IMO, is the Monster HTS-2000 which is avalable for $125.00 (discounted) online from Globalmart.com. It helped considerably with our apartment incarcerated system in LA. I am now experimenting with using two in tandem for the digital equipment, but one alone made an earth shaking difference in our setup (much smoother highs, plus many other benefits). I also agree with trying out a set of Vibrapods ($24 shipped) under the source as well. The Monster and the Vibrapods were the best bang for the buck when I was attempting to rid the system(s) of digital glare and harshness. I am moving on to what I hope to be better things as far as isolation components go but they are considerably more costly. I will still be using the Pods on a second bedroom system because they make it sound much better and cost so little.
Pods alone are amazing, but there's still more to be had! I have Black Diamond shelves under my components, which are also amazing but rather pricey. Put some Vibrapods between your rack & the shelf (B.D., MDF, Nuance, or whatever shelf you prefer) & things really come alive! Then add some cones under the components for additional enhancement, YMMV of course. Much experimentation is required, but the results can be startling when you're finished.
Although sometimes I preferred NO cones, just the pods & a shelf. Or sometimes brass cones, Black Diamond #3 or #4 cones, or Polycrystal's. Each type yields different charactaristics. It never ends once you dive into this...
Thanks to everyone who responded to this thread! I really appreciate all the advices. Just a couple of questions:
Dekay, on which of your components did you use the power conditioner with?
Bob_bundus, this may sound strange, but could you explain what you meant by "between the rack and the shelf"? All my components are on the rack/shelf...
John_1, may I ask which particular AP speaker cable are you using?
Lastly, could everyone please post their system here for the benefit of everyone else? Thanks!
NoMoney raises a valid point re: the synergy issue. Mgs: It esp. seems that those "garden" ic's may be a definite roadblock. Somewhat hard to intrepret the initial post: I think he has T2 spkr. cables already?
Now for that shelf question again...Your rack's shelf is obviously on the bottom. Vibrapods sit on that rack shelf, donut hole faces up. A separate shelf sits on top of those pods (Nuance, MDF, B.D. whatever you like / can afford). Cones, points down, sit on top of the shelf (if / when used). Component then sits on the cones. Can even mass load the component with sand bags or lead shot on top. The vibrapods must be calculated to work with the full weight-load of everything (this is how you pick which model). (I have a bunch of all #'s 1 thru 5 on hand. You can mix them & add in different #'s too)
Also you can tune somewhat by moving those cones around 1" at a time underneath the component: wider apart is usually brighter/ more detailed than closer together.
Like I said it never ends. Get the basics right first (cables especially) before you begin the fine tuning. & everything interacts, just to complicate things :-)
Sounds like we share the same belief that using cables from the same mfgr/quality/model give better synergy within the system. How do you like the Transparents? I thought about trying them but they are currently a little out of my budget. May I ask which particular model of Transparent cable you are using? Bob_bundus is indeed correct; I am using MIT T2 speaker cables (again, synery within the system), and following the above advice I think I will get those "garden" cables replaced first by a pair of T2 ICs, as well as an AC power conditioner, before I start fine-tuning.
Again, thanks you all for the advices and for elaborating the details!
I found similar (slight) results getting the power center off the floor. A better conditioner than a Monster HTS2000 will yield even better results. Look into Vansevers or Chang Lightspeed. I had a similar problem originally and like a few others, a pair of MIT T2 did the trick. Mine are the Bi-Wire ones. What also help was when I picked up a used Nordost SPM cable and put it between my preamp and power amp; and then again later putting Siltech interconnects between the CD player and preamp.
I have been playing with many things listed here. I have an EMC-1 CD player and was playing it on a glass stand. I big NO NO. I hated it, SO I took off the EMC-1 feet and used some #4 cones under it, much better. Also I switched out a Mamba Silver conductor power and upgraded to a Black Mamba on my Pre Amp, another nice improvement. The last thing I did was started switching cables. I liked the AQ cables because but they were abit forward, yet the Tara cables were to layed back, SO I switched to XLO and got the best of both worlds. Just play and have fun. But be careful don't go broke.
Raise the power cond. off the floor? Hey I'm gonna try that! I have a Chang Lightspeed 3200 & a 9900 Amp; they even came with spikes but I never used them - doh! Thanks!
Glass shelves - No No is right!
Now here's a few more basic tweaks for harshness that I thought of... (1)Basic contact cleaning: signal cables, spkr. cables, AC cables, AC receptacles (de-energize first!) clean everything with pipe cleaners dipped in Kontact (best) or even denatured alcohol is better than nothing at all. (2) Burnish all AC cord plugs with crocus cloth (best) or even an eraser - follow by contact cleaning. (3)Install a better AC receptacle in that apartment's wall. Try to pick up a Hubbel or at least a 20A Leviton industrial grade receptacle. Sure $15 or $20 is a pricey outlet, but is a really cheap upgrade considering the sonic enhancement.
Hey, the RCA cable that came with the Morrisson ELAD is as good if not better than any cable available, it's RLC parameters are precisely what is reguired for audio signal transmission. I have used the Elad and the suppied cable as reference components for about a year now and believe both are amoung the very very best in transparency and value. IMHO, forget "warmer" and look for the more likely sources of "brightness". Are you convinced it is system brightness vs bright recordings and a resolute system. I bet your system sounds fantastic! Look at getting $100 worth of auralex wall treatment-it works and it looks cool- and a dozen new cd's and time to listen....then if later you must spend look at new speakers ...Morrison's new speakers should be available soon...if the speakers are like the ELAD then life doesn't get much better!!!
MGS, I am using Transparent Ultra between Sony 9000es/dvd/cd/sacd and ARC ls-15, Balanced Ultra to Proceed HPA2 and Super-biwire to ML Aerius i. I started off several years back with "music wave+" line and was fortunate enough to have a salesman and dealer that gave me a good deal to trade up into the premium line. Once there Transparents' trade up program took over. I hope to upgrade the speaker cables next. I never could have afforded to start at this level.
The "garden-variety" cable that I am using between the CDP and the ELAD is indeed the cables that Don sent along with the ELAD! As for the source of brightness, given that I have noticed the problem across various recordings (redbook and HDCD), I believe it's a system problem...
BTW, between which components would you recommend the Morrison cable? Source to preamp, or preamp to amp?
As for the wall treatment, it might not be an option for now since I am renting my apt and the landlord isn't too crazy about me putting stuff on the wall, haha...
BTW, I can't help but notice your excitement over Don's products. Do you use his speakers in your system, or have you heard it before in another system?
Thanks for the compliment. Truthfully, other than the slight brightness problem, I am quite satisfied with my budget system!
Actually I had the HTS 3 inches from the floor before the cones. Just considering that the electronics inside are in the same vibration environment prompted me to try the cones. I believe is a vibration thing on top of the elevation from floor because I already had that.
Tell us what do you find after trying
To Sol322. Thanks for the great tip on raising your monster power conditioner off the floor. I have one also and I followed your advice but I used vibrapods sitting on tiles with dr. scholls abrasive skin rubs cut into cubes on top of the pods. The monster now sits on top of this....damn if it doesn't work....It's as if the notes are even fuller...scary good.....great idea....thanks again...cheers, Bluenose The feeling of hearing into the music is noticeably better...
I always thought of Enid Lumley as a comical figure but after seeing the recommendation to raise cables off the floor repeated here and at Mapleshade, I figured, what the heck, like chicken soup, it couldn't hoit. I cut the flaps off a cardboard box, folded them in half and cut a "v" into the fold to hold the cable. Darned if there isn't a very slight improvement in image and treble "air". BTW, it's worth repeating that replacing the outlet in my apartment with the Pass& Seymour that I got from Kevperro made a HUGE difference, as much as the Asylum cables themselves.