I'd be interested in what information you may come up with regarding this platform for use with a Dac, in a current non-Star Sound audio rack also.
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I'll let you know, I just picked up a few used Apprentice SP-SA 03 platforms and will try them under my dac, preamp, my monoblocks, and if I can I'll try under my speakers. Its hard finding anything negative about these on the net so I guess I'll find out for myself.
My rack is from Adona and basically houses just the dac and pre and source while my monoblocks are on maple slabs but I'll try the Apprentice platforms without them.
Just getting back with you about the Apprentice platforms. My components have been sitting on Herbie's sonic hardballs which are placed on an Adona rack and when I replaced the Herbies with the Apprentice's it was a big improvement, especially with the dac. Just like what's been written before...more relaxed and natural sound while being more detailed. Big thumbs up.
I did experiment with taking the Adona rack out of the room and had the Apprentice's on the floor and got an even better improvement with soundstage and depth. I got these Apprentice's here off Audiogon for almost half the original price and they are without a doubt the best money I've spent so far. Star Sound has an excellent product. I can only imagine what the Rhythm's can do.
I have the Apprentice 103 platforms which have 1.5 inch points. I'm thinking of going with the 104 which has the 2 inch points for my monoblocks.
I'll be taking one of the platforms over to a friends house today and try it under his VAC 160i SE. The guy who sold them to me felt they're probably more beneficial under tube equipment so I'll see if it does for the VAC what it did for my Lampi and Herron.
Please let me/us know your findings regarding the VACi SE (a very, very nice unit). What will the Apprentice 103 platform's points be sitting on?
I'm a believer in Robert and Star Sound products.
Over the years I have owned many of his products that I used with various systems that I had assembled. I had to downsize a few years ago and have not kept up with the current production line and improvements. However, I still own a great variety of the brass audio points.
It was kind of a mixed bag of results with the VAC. The unit was set on a wooden slab of some sort, neither one of us knew what type of wood it was and then it was sitting on top of a wooden dresser so a lot variables in play.
I thought the VAC definitely had more detail with instruments under the Apprentice 103 sitting on top of all that wood but vocals sounded thin and lacked body and texture. This was all done on the fly and within minutes of placing the VAC on the Apprentice so not quite the ideal setup for testing. He's kind of stuck with the dresser for now and it may be a while before he could move things around and have better space between his speakers.
I think I'm going to get some Apprentice 104's for my monoblock amps before I spring for the Rhythm's for my speakers. Maybe after I get my tax refund I'll be ready for the Rhythms. Already spending money before I get it...what am I doing? :)
i've had terrific results w/ the Apprentice 103 under digital. the key is the setup: the elegant and thoughtful design allows the user to orient the 3 points in such a manner that the weight of the component is equally distributed in a vertical manner---only when that is optimized will the platform work its best. ---no other footer on the market makes it as easy to find an ideal weight distribution of 3 points to the vertical plane. highly recommended.
t_ramey, did you try the 103 or 104 under your monoblocks? I am revisiting isolation in my main system and have stacked another Symposium Svelte Plus shelf onto the existing Svelte but have found that some mass loading in form of granite slabs did add more authority to the music (I avoid to use weight description). The amps are coupled with Symposium Big Footers.
I may try Symposium 104 stands directly under the amps and no slabs.
Sorry I didn't see this earlier. Yes I have the 103's under my monoblocks and they work great just like every other piece that I have put Star Sound platforms under. The amps are solid state but I've heard others say tubed equipment gets better results. My dac and preamp are tubed and they definitely have the more noticeable improvements vs my amps but I've had such good results from Star Sound that I don't feel the need to try anything else.
And yes to agears point, the longer they sit the better the sound.
For those with the Sistrum platforms, you should try the Audio Horizons RTS couplers in conjunction with the Star Sound products. They are a pair of flat ( 1/2" thick bars 1 1/2" wide) with the bottom one going under the platform while the top one goes on top of the component. You replace the points with 1 1/4" thick aluminum pucks ( 2 of these located near the front middle of the underside of the piece and back middle). The bottom bar is threaded to accept a 3/8" thick threaded rod. The top bar has a corresponding hole that allows the rod to slide through. The holes are located 1/2" from the each of each side of the bars. The bars are 1" longer on each side than the component ( so commonly 19" long for a 17" wide component). The top of the rods are threaded so you can use either nice rounded threaded knobs or heavy duty wing nuts to screw on the rods from the top. These are to be tightened by hand very securely--this pulls the ends of each component toward the platform. At that point the component WILL NOT move.
The benefits of all this is 1.) no longer will any piece have any chance to tip or get bumped off, 2.) the points are no longer needed due to the pucks being used instead, and 3.) the benefits in sound that the SP-101 had to the component are more than doubled by using the RTS couplers. It takes anywhere from 7-14 days to hear the effects made by these couplers. At first, there is no change. When it happens, you will be amazed at the difference. There is NO DRAWBACKS to the sound but you will have very similar positive changes as when you placed your component on the Sistrum initially. The more components that are clamped by couplers, the greater the change you will experience. Anything except the turntable may be coupled.
For me, the Sistrum SP-101 platforms on the rack, the 101's under my speakers, and the RTS couplers fastening each component securely to the platform are easily the biggest improvements I've ever made to my system.
The technology for the RTS couplers fits in perfectly with the Sistrum 101's or any of Star Sounds platforms--drain the vibrations to ground quickly while maintaining the more live music sound. By the way, the couplers look very natural when combined with the 101's--not like an add on. I even figured out a way to couple my VMPS RM40 speakers to a 101 platform. This had great performance difference along with the practical difference of having no chance to tip one of these 260 lb. monsters over anymore.
I have nothing to do with either company, but am now a true believer in coupling vs. isolation.