Pretty hard to get solid concrete to vibrate in the first place. Are you worried about itty, bitty, tiny-tiney micro vibrations that only bats might notice? Speakers by there very nature are designed to work in their respective environment. The spikes IMO, if properly set-up should be most sufficient. Save your money and make sure that your source and pre are well isolated from unwanted vibes.
I would make sure your spikes are actually penetrating the carpet and sitting directly on the concrete. I used a sharp pointed X-acto hobby knife to make a small "X" so the spike actually sits on concrete. It made an obvious improvement.
Like the SS Ultras, have a set under my speakers, and they were a real improvement coming from spikes on a suspended wooden floor (with granite in between). That said, a good solid spike into concrete is a real solid (pun intended) solution. I'd be a lot less quick to assume that the Stillpoints would be an improvement under your circumstances (and, personally, I likely wouldn't have bothered had I concrete to spike to in the first place). At root, they provide a fundamentally different approach -- coupling and mass-loading v. isolation -- and which might work better in your particular setup may be unknowable absent some experimentation. If you're really itching to find out, try a set from an outfit with a lending or return policy (used The Cable Co for mine, ended up keeping them) and send'em back if they don't do it for you. The ultras are mighty spendy for a footer, makes good sense to try them out first if you can. If they can't convince you, consider yourself lucky and spike away with confidence and abandon. No?
Ultra a little better than cones/ risers. A very big dissapoimtment for me. Another mk2/SE marketing BS.
Spend $$$ on source.
A surprise for me...I have Vandersteen 5A's which have spikes designed for them...my speakers were on the spikes with brass floor protectors under the spikes. I moved into a new house with Travertine tile over congrete. Much to my surprise, on some frequencies, the whole speaker which is VERY heavy resonated uncontrolably...I could feel the speaker jumping up and down at these resonating frequencies. I fixed the problem after lots of experimentation by simply putting a bit of Gorilla tape under the floor protectors of the spikes and the speakers are sitting pretty. You never know what you bump into with this hobby.
I have been tempted by the Ultra's too. If you are looking to dissipate vibration as the Ultras are designed to do, you might try Herbie's Cone/Spike Decoupling Gliders under your spikes. $14.89 X 8 = $127.12, compared to about $1,800 for the Ultra's. Jim Smith of the book Get Better Sound likes them on wood and carpet over concrete.
After moving house a couple of years ago, I'm now in an (overall better sounding) upstairs room with hardwood floors and a good, solid sub-floor. I came from the basement with 6" fiberglass reinforced concrete floors (which offered excellent low frequency resolution and power).
I'm still working on a suitable footer for my speakers as the suspended floor tends to sink a lot of LF energy. The Herbie's decoupling gliders were absolutely awful for me (YMMV). Yes, they got rid of some vibrations, but they also left me with a tall 200+ lb speaker that wobbled worryingly, and a sound that could only be described as dead and uninvolving, like someone threw a heavy quilt over both speakers...Herbie makes some good products, but these just didn't work in my application. Currently, I'm back to the stock brass spikes on brass discs. There are other so-called 'decoupling' contenders, but none of them come cheap: The Wave Kinetics 2NS (around $1600 for the set) and the Track Audio spike kits (around $1250). I would welcome thoughts on either design.
Palasr - Thank you for your honest input and the (YMMV). I am going on the strength of Jim Smith saying that in voicing many systems every person liked the Herbie's products under their spikes. Mine are coming this week and I will post my mileage on this thread. I will be delighted if they work as they are cheap, and I will not be surprised if they don't because indeed, YMMV.
Gammajo, I just bought and put under my speaker stands 8 Herbies Decoupler/Sliders. I have not listened yet, will let them settle, a little wobbly but not bad. They will be under some Osiris speaker stands wityh Merlin TSMX speakers. Guy at Merlin said not to use them, but i am taking JS advice and trying them Will try this Friday night and post on this forum what i think or hear. Also could you do same? will be on look out on your opinion. Ps> they are on carpet.
Ryriken. You bet I will post and look forward to your input as well. My wife leaves tomorrow (Friday) for two days and my Herbies are supposed to arrive Friday - so I should be able to get in a good listen.
>>Pretty hard to get solid concrete to vibrate in the first place.<<
Nah, concrete resonates from one end to the other - its a great transport for external vibration.
I heard from a friend whose ears I trust; he spoke quite highly of the new Stillpoints with his Wilson speakers. You might email Paul Waukeen (sp?) at Stillpoints.
I was thinking of buying the SS Stillpoints.
But, I recently purchased the Herbie's Cone/Spike Decoupling Gliders. My speakers weigh 215 lbs each and have 2" Audiopoint spikes on them. The speakers spikes were sitting on a carpet (no pad) over concrete.
The Herbies under the spikes work great and now I am able to move these heavy speakers for better toe in etc.
Ozzy, did the Decoupling Gliders make any audible improvements?
Yo2tup, To be honest no. No better or worse.
Well, my Herbies decoupling gliders that are designed to go under spikes came today. I also got the big fat dots to go between the upper and lower speaker modules. I have Von Schweikert VR4Sr's on a maple wood over truss floor with standard VS spikes which are quite substantial.
First, I do not notice anything bad, no reduction of liveliness or naturalness. There is improvement with the Herbies even though the system already sounded great. For me there is better articulation in the very low bass, for example on the deep drums in Jennifer Warren's Way Down Deep. At higher volumes, particularly when the music has heavy bass and there are subtle things going on in the treble at the same time, the mids and highs sound clearer with The Herbies, plus a cleaner sound stage and less congealing on loud complex passages. So for less than $200 and a 90 return policy I am happy.
I have two listening rooms, one on the second floor and one on the foundation. In both the StillPoints Ultra SSs were by far the best isolation I ever heard. In part they isolate both ways from the floor upward and from the component downward, but they convert the motion to heat.
I think the Syn. Res. MIGs and big MIGs are a distant second best and far cheaper.
I have probably twenty isolation devices still in my possession but have tried many, many others.
Glad they worked out for you; I'll be curious if your observations change over the course of a week or two (not to play devil's advocate or anything ;-)).
I would bet that the Ultras would beat the Herbies but they were too rich for me at the moment as we have 2 kids in college, planning a wedding, and just dumped 5K into repairing cars. For me this experiment was to see whether devices proclaiming to turn vibrations into heat versus spiking would make an audible difference. Now that I have established that I can hear this difference, I'll be looking to compare to the Ultras when I get some scratch.
As i said my opinion only. I put in some of Herbies/Gliders under a pair Merlin TSMXe speakers, on Osiris speakers stands. I let them settle for 5 days before listining. Bottom line i did not like them, too thin sounding, something just did not sound right. Called Bobby at Merlin, said DO NOT UNCOUPLE speakers from spikes. He said for his speakers they must be coupled to floor thru the spikes. Kept the Coplers, using under some BDR Racing cones on different equipment. Like thet say YMMV.
Ryriken. Might be that your speakers are designed to use the floor to add weight to the bass? Are you on wood or concrete? I am also now letting them settle in and will have opportunity with wife away this weekend to do some more evaluation. Then I will take them out and see if I am missing anything.
yes they are on wood floor over carpeting. In second floor bedrrom used as a listening rom.Am using a sub, but really don;t need it. Bobby makes a and designs his speaker so he should know, don't cars what JS says.Kept the sliders for other duties, under my amps and cd, with BDR racing cones.
Yup, he and your ears should know what sounds best. Happy listening