Review: Monument Reference Signature Series SoundPosts Tweak
This review is for a couple of the products from a company called Monument Reference. They caught my eye here on Audiogon as they use Brazilian Rosewood for their coupling devices which you can use under components and speakers to treat vibrations and resonance. These devices are apparently treated with a unique varnish similar to what is used on musical instruments like Violins.
I first purchased a set of the Signature Series SoundPosts and used them under my Cary 308. Those familiar with the 308 CD Player probably know they come from CARY with wooden feet of their own. The SoundPosts come in sets of three so you install them in a triangular configuration under your components. An unbelievable amount of thought went into positioning these discs under your components as it comes with a “Center of Mass” installation procedure that is very intriguing yet easy to follow. One post being upfront, and two in the rear.
Well, I sat down after installing and started to do some listening. At first, I was kind of shocked at the immediate difference in the presentation and character. I mean, I have used the usual suspects in vibration treatment devices (VibraPods, Sorbothane feet, German Cones, etc) but something was very different. I will do my best to describe what I was witnessing. The thing that really was jumping out at me was the quietness of my system and the rhythmic pace of the music. I mean all of the instruments were much clearly defined and seem to be much more detailed yet relaxed. Okay, I am thinking that I am imagining some of this. I mean I have to be.
So, I continued to do some listening with multiple titles that I am very familiar with. Definitely not my imagination, this is really a nice improvement with no compromises in other areas. Okay, now my curiosity is truly peaked. Well I ended my first listening session at a very late hour and went to bed. I called a friend of mine the next day, and told him about the SoundPosts. I invited him over for a listen. So here I go again. I remove the SoundPosts from under my CD Player and we start to listen. Things sound good as they always have but I am now noticing some congestion in the midrange and the quietness I described above had definitely dissipated. Also, the system is just missing the musical bloom from the night before. It does not sound bad but definitely not as spot on as my previous listening the night before with the SoundPosts installed.
Okay, so we have now listened to several selections off of a few discs (Daniel Lanois: Shine, Ryan Adams: Love is Hell, Alice in Chains: Unplugged, Patricia Barber: Modern Cool). So, I reinstall the SoundPosts under the CD Player. We then listen to the same selections in the same order. My buddy looks at me and says, "You have got to be kidding me". I smile as now I know I am not imagining it myself. The same results were immediately present in the systems character. We continued and did some listening for hours with all kinds of music. Things were just right. Now, my system has always been involving but there was now an ease to it and just a bloom that it did not possess before.
Well, as I am a music junkie and addicted to this crazy hobby of ours. I found myself on the Monument Reference web page www.monref.com looking at their other products. I went ahead and ordered two additional sets of their Signature Series Master SoundPosts and Signature Series SpeakerPosts. I planned on installing the Master Posts under my Cary SLI-80 and of course the Speaker Posts between my Sonus Faber Concertos and the matching stands. I ended up speaking to the Bryan the owner of Monument Reference and found out that he also makes custom products and offers professional set ups, tuning, and consulting services. He mentioned to also take a look at his Tuning Posts as they sit on top of components and compliment the effects of the Sound Posts. He is a real audio enthusiast and a very nice guy.
Well by the end of the week, I had both sets and installed them. I went ahead and uninstalled the OEM Rubber Feet from my SLI-80 and set the amp on top of the Master Sound Posts in the same triangular configuration. The speakers require the opposite. Two Speaker Posts upfront with one in the rear since the drivers on are the front of the speaker. Finally ready to listen. I know what you are thinking, more of the same results right? Yes and No. Things were still quiet and yes, the system still had this bloom I described above but things had changed. After listening further, I finally could put my finger on it. The soundstage moved back vastly and each instrument was in its own space again with that ease I described. Not to mention, the rhythmic pace of the music was just "ON".
This is the best my current system has ever sounded period. My friend came over the next night once again with my wife looking at us like we were crazy after hearing me talk about these wooden discs and what a difference they have made. We did some more listening and yes to validate what I experienced, he witnessed it as well. Are we the ultimate judges in listening? No, but I cannot say enough good things about this product. Needless to say my friend ordered a set for his CD player the next day. I have found myself listening more and more and sifting through my collection more and more. I would strongly suggest giving this product a serious audition. I was skeptical myself but anything with a 30-day return policy seems like fair game when it comes to trying new things. Anyway, I would recommend these to anyone who is happy with their system but is looking to take things to the next step in musicality and refinement.
Thanks for Reading,
Cary SLI-80 / NOS Tubes (Installed Signature Series Master SoundPosts)
Cary 308 CD Player / For Redbook and HDCDs (Installed Signature Series SoundPosts)
Sony SCD-222ES / For SACDs
Sonus Faber Concerto Home (Installed Signature Series SpeakerPosts)
Sonus Faber Adjustable Stands
Audience Au24 Interconnects
Audience Au24 Speaker Wire
Cary 308 CD player, Cary SLI-80 Signature, Sonus Faber Concertos and matching Stands
DH Cones, German Cones, Symposium, Bright Star Audio.