Dynaudio C4 speaker equipment matching

My first post, looking for advise.

My system includes:

Plinius CD101 CDP
Plinius Tautoro Pre Amp
Two Plinius SA-103's running in bridged mono configuration
Nordost Frey interconects(2m) and speaker cables(4m) Nordost Thor power conditioner and Brahma power cords (2m) attached to all equipment
Finite Element Signiture racks
Ceraballs and Cerabases
Dynaudio C4 speakers on spikes

The room is untreated and large, 12ft ceilings, 23ft long and 28ft wide. Speakers are 4ft from the wall rear wall. Listening is normally at moderate levels.

I listen to rock, male and female voices, acoustic guitar, a little RAP and techno. Broad taste.

I have a very large sound stage, which I love, though sound is to forward for my liking.

I am looking for more dynamic's, increased depth in the sound stage and greater bass control. I was thinking of starting with the CDP, was thinking of WADIA 861SE, Esoteric SA60/UX-01 or similar and was also thinking of going to Nordost Valhalla cables, though the pair I tried did not make a significant difference, to my suprise.

I was told that changing to a copper power cord on my preamp might help with depth of sound stage. Would appreciate any advise as to the weak links in my system and upgrade opportunities, biggest impact first. I want to keep the SA-103's amps.
On thing I noticed when I demoed the C2's in my home is when I had them toed in they did sound a little too forward compared to my C1's. Then Mick from Dynaudio suggested not toeing them in at all because the the wide dispersion tweeters. That helped the forwardness and widened the sound stage.

That being said I will admit my room setup is not a good match for the C2's. My room is very strange 14' X 26' but the system is on the long wall (and has to be). For me I also had to move them to 2' from the rear wall and that's when I really lost the depth.

I know I didn't answer your question about the equipment but try not toeing them in and see if that helps.
Xtil6, thanks for the advise. I do have toe in on the C4's, I will try some diferent placement scenario's, I am no expert in speaker positioning.
Without question, the first thing I would do is address treating your room. Room treatments gave me the biggest bang for the buck when I had my C4's. I found GIK Acoustics to be very helpful and cost effective. You could probably treat your room for $1,000 or less.

The second thing I would do is replace your preamp with a tubed preamp... as you can tailor the sound of your system by tube rolling.

The third thing I would change is your CDP.

I don't think changing a powercord will transform your system.

Nice amps by the way.
Room treatment a must!!!!..Im not a fan of Plinius with the C4s..Pass labs is the ticket if your set on solid state IMO(x250.5 or better x350.5)..I would also dump the Nordost cables,I ran them with my C4s for about a week .Hated them..A nice tube preamp will help some,I dont totally agree with the tube rolling theory as far as a drastic system change..I find a great tube pre will not drastically change its character by simply changing tubes(if it did it would be long gone from my system)...The room treatment will set you in the right direction
Dear Jon47: My friend Alan has the C4 running through the JC1 monoblocks and the quality performance is just great.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Disclaimer: we are a Dynaudio - Cardas Dealer

To me, it looks like the situation you are experiencing could be the choice of cables with the choice of speakers. Customers have found the combination of the super resolution of the Dyn speaker with a super resolution Nord cable to be challenging in certain rooms. I know the Frey is a bit "warmer" than most of Nord product line, but I think there even more fullness can be gained. Both can be great products but sometimes they simply don't play well together. I suggest a cable with a bit more control like the Cardas upper line Golden Cross (warmest), Golden Reference, Golden Presence (least warmest), but not the Neutral Reference. Of course there is always the new Clear, too. There are no absolutes in audio but I think if you head in this direction first, it should help your situation a bit.

Cheers Dan
I totally agree w/Dedicatedaudio ..Ive run Cardas golden cross cables with my C4s.. Nordost IMO just suck w/Dynaudio..Like I said room treatment and cables
I also have the Nordost Frey's (4m) on my C1's and they are a great combo. Much better than JPS S3's. I've not tried any of the Cardas speaker cables because I was very disappointed with the neutral ref ic's. AQ king cobras even sounded better.
Xti16..Try the golden Cardas line,you'll be surprised how your C1s will come to life..(forget Neutral ref as stated by the above dealer post)
guys, no cable is going to solve his problems.

"I am looking for more dynamic's, increased depth in the sound stage and greater bass control."

you need room treatment and proper placement. much better money spent than pricy cables that you are bound to be disappointed with.
I definitely believe & know first hand that cables make a difference (especially with revealing speakers like C4's)... however, the first step has to be room treatments regardless of what system you have or what "sound" you are trying to achieve. Room treatments are relatively low cost / high bang for the buck, most effective tweak you can incorporate to get the most out of your system.
Re improving dynamics, although opinions and experiences will obviously differ, you'll find comments in many previous threads here, by experienced audiophiles with very high quality systems, that even very expensive power conditioners limited the dynamics of their systems. I'd suggest re-assessing your system with the power conditioner removed, as a quick and easy step one.

Good advice above about pursuing room treatments. A little searching here at Audiogon using that term will give you some good food for thought.

As far as image depth is concerned, in my experience there is nothing like tubes. As a technically oriented electrical engineer, I have no idea why that should be the case, but it is certainly my experience (in my case, particularly with power amps), as well as that of many others.

-- Al
I won't argue your point. When I demoed the Jps and Nordost in my home I would say the Jps Superconductor 3's had a lot more life. Even compared to the Vahalla's. Where the Jps fell apart was on the very lowest of bass notes (too thumpy for me). Any how I bought the Frey's because of the extra detail but more importantly the 'air' between the instruments and vocals. My first impression was these Nordost cables have a 'Thin' sound. But after 6 weeks I heard the 'air'. That was enough for me to buy them over a more 'full/alive' sound. Personally I think the 'thiness' is the 'air'.

I also demoed the Brahama pc and compared to to both my fusion audio enchanter and impulse and found the pcs added more life while leaving the "air' alone which is what I would think jon47 is trying to get away from.

I will also admit the C1's (great speakers) are not really in the same class as the C4's.

Maybe someday I'll try different speaker cables but for now I'm a happy listener. So I can see why some will hate the Nordost and some will swear by them.
Thankyou all for your invaluable comments. I will take the time to read your suggestions. I have approx 60-80 hours run time on the system to date, more burn in time seems to be required. A combination of room treatment, speaker positioning, cables, AC circuit improvements are the consistant message. Good news for me is that I should not jump too quickly and start changing out components.

The Pass X350.5 Amp would have been a great choice, though significantly more expensive than the Plinius Amps.
Jon47, I have a Plinius Tautoro pre-amp and plinius sb301. This is a great combo. Please do not change pre-amp. I tried several tube pre-amps (Antique Sound Labs Arc Ref 3 and CJ) none of them was giving me dynamics, air and depths of soundstage as Tautoro does. Also I had a Plinius cd-101 player. It was ok but I was missing the space and air around instruments and sound was a laid back, even so very musical. I changed it to esoteric x-03se. Much better player. Air, dynamics and musicality in spades. But you should start from room treatments first as other suggesting. Cables may help but the effect may be minor.
Dear Pdrehar,

Thanks for you comments.

I have followed your thread regarding your system with great interest, as we had the same speakers and amp. Shame that you did not get a chance to go with 2 x SA102's in bridged mono vs. one in stereo, the improvement was startling in my system when I added the second amp.

Interestingly, I also auditioned the Harbeth M40.1's and Spendor SP100R's, as well as a long list of other brands prior to the decision to go with the C4's. I completely understand the appeal of the Harbeth M40.1's...very musical indeed and easy to drive well.
Dear Missioncoonery,

What cables do you use for interconnects.

Good sound is all about making the room sound good. Your equipment is fine
Having owned both C4's and now Harbeth M40.1's I can say that both a fine speakers, but somewhat an apples vs. oranges comparison in that they sound quite a bit different and excel in different areas. I could easily live with the C4's for a long time... just wanted to try a new flavor to keep my audiophile addiction / gear-mongering juices flowing.
JON47..Im running Kubala Sosna at present(which ive borrowed)..IMO(all this is just my opinion) the best Ive tried w/the Dyn C4s..I ran Cardas golden cross and loved them as well.Cant go wrong with the Cardas golden line except the neutral as several have stated.Nordost doesnt bring out the toetap factor in Dyn.Way too sterile.Totally sucked in my system..No offense to the Plinius guys but your amps are not a great choice/not with those speakers.I think thats why pdreher dumped his C4s,didnt try the Pass...Get a loaner 350.5/250.5,worth the effort...I finally heard the 40.1s .The Harbeths, although OK are not in the same conversation w/the C4s .......
Thanks for the cabe tips. I will borrow some Cardas and MIT cables from the local dealers and give them a try. Have not had either brand in my system yet. Thanks for pointing me in this direction.
My friend has a room about 1/3 smaller than yours. He had similar issues, and tried various things. His current setup consists of an ARC Ref 3 + Pass X350.5 on the same Finite Elemente rack. He's using Purist Audio cables. I believe he had tried several top models of Nordost cables and didn't care for them.

I've been listening to his system at least once a month for the past couple of years with various changes he's done with equipment, tweaks. I think the best improvements came in this order:

1/ Speaker placement
2/ Room treatment
3/ Equipment/Cable upgrade

Anyways, I can say that his system is sounding much, much better these days compare to when he first got them home.

He's been using those Finite Elemente Cerabase under his C4s. He swears by it. But I've spoken to someone who tried them under Verity Parsifal Encores (my speakers) and the guy said that he didn't hear too much of an improvement.

for cables, i've used Supras for years with Dyns and they are cheap and great as they are very neutral. you don't need to spend more---and i would never put a networked cable on a Dynaudio. they are used to tame bright speakers. and Dynaudio is definitely not bright. i wouldn't use Cardas either which is usually a smooth sound cable (i tried Golden Reference on my old Wilson system and didn't really care for it).

but none of what you want has to do with cables, so i would work with speaker placement and room first. in fact, selling all of your Nordost gear and using it for room treatments will put you in the right direction.

btw, i listen to a lot of house music on mine and dj some :) the C1s have tremendous bass, and i've thought about upgrading to C4s, but they are quite big beasts.

Jon47..Again, I agree with Gundam..Sell the Nordost and get treatments if $$ is a factor..Thats the starting point before you change gear or cables etc.Second, speaker/seat placement..The C4s are a hard speaker to get right in most rooms and ive struggled.Ive had mine since Nov 08 and they are not quite right for my taste but getting close..IMO the C4s work better with a warmer cable(and ive tried a bunch). Cardas is a good one to audition first.I want a system to sound accuarate but musical if that makes sense,that was totally lost with Nordost ..If you dont address the room first cable changing wont do much..If it was my system I would replace the amps after that and add a quality tube pre.I love a tube pre with solid state,and im a old school guy with 25 years of tube amp use.Cost and hassel got me off that band wagon about 7 years ago when I retubed a Jadis defy7..Im running a Mac 402 at present,which alot swear by with Dynaudio...For me the Pass x250.5 is the ticket from the amps ive owned or tried,just my opinion..Let use know how it working out and enjoy the music
i've had Pass 250.5 on my Dyns as well and it works very, very well. MOSFET amps in general work better than bipolar transistors in my view, though ahven't tried the Krells which are a popular match with Dyns
OK, I owned the C4's and they need every ounce of juice the SA-103's are capable of putting out. A new CDP will do nothing for your problem. Nordost cabling is just not that musical and dynamic sounding compared to some other offerings available (stick with copper). Room placement would yield smoothest response by using the long wall and spreading them apart to at least 11 or 12 feet with a listening position of about the same distance or just slightly farther. A Transparent MM powerlink will yield greater dynamics for just about anything you connect it to and will address line noise and contamination (MIT AC2 also works well). Cardas, Kimber, MIT, Transparent etc..are all musical cables and will vastly increase your enjoyment and involvement with your music.
From a logistics perspective (room treatments in parallel) I borrowed some MIT MA interconnects and Cardas Golden Reference speaker cables (only had one Golden Reference interconnect in stock to lend me) After many hours of changing and listening, the combination that worked best was the Cardas Golden Reference speaker cables and MIT interconnects. WOW, what a difference! Much better control and realism. The harshness of the Nordost is gone (so is some of the air arounf voices and intruments unfortunately) I will borrow another Cardas interconnect and some MA speaker cables and continue listening. Will let you know the outcome...but going in the right direction now. I have been searching for decent looking and effective room treatments, in parallel...still looking...suggestions most welcome! Also, placed cerabases under the speakers...made a noticable improvement to the base control. Also moved the speakers out from the wall another foot and spent some time on placement...I had too much toe in and speakers a little to close together...depth of soundstage is improving.
I would suggest you try the MIT products together for best results, with the best IC at the source and so on down the chain. The speaker cables from MIT are phenomenal, but will only pass on what get's to them. You might want to try the Oracle DOT 2 cables, namely the V1.2 series...they were the former top of the line and may give you what your looking for at a lower price point:O) Have you contacted Joe Abrams at Equus Audio? He is THEE MIT guy to talk with and also offers new MIT product at 50% off retail (not the MA however). I have heard that the MA series is different sounding from previous offerings and may not be as sublimely musical as the Oracle stuff.
Well after a full weekend of testing high end MIT and Cardas cables, I finally found what sounds best to me in my room with my music tastes and equipemt. Best results for me were achieved with Golden Presence from CD to Pre (XLR) Golden Reference from Pre to Amps (XLR) and Golden Reference spreaker cables. I can listen to this combination for hours on end, without fatigue. Also tried Nordost Valhalla and all sorts of combinations.

Now for treatments!
Cardas makes very musical cables...you made a wise decision:O)
Jon47 ,,Told ya so