Without trying to duck the question, I honestly believe the best answer is to try each in your own system with your own gear and with your ears. That's the only way you'll know which you prefer. Making purchase decisions based solely on responses in an internet thread is like buying week old bread with a blindfold.
Jee,I wonder where/how Stevie Wonder buys his bread? I also 'wonder' if he buys 'weak-old',Wonder bread?
But seriously folks; ain't that what the forums are for?----Well,it U sta-B. I just got some of those Herbie damp-er-things. I ain't got 'em yet,but I'll say what I think;about 'em when I got 'em under my stuff.But, I think fresh bread may have better dampening qualities/than 'weak'-old stuff.
I never said asking questions and offering opinion and insight on
discussion boards was a waste of time. My point is that it's a bad idea to
buy with only that info and without doing any first hand listening.
With that said, I stand by my recommendation to try both the Stillpoints
and Symposium Rollerblocks in one's own system. There are just too
many variables from system to system to make a good decision based
solely on discussion board opinions. The same idea applies to cables.
I have used Aurios, Symposium Rollerblocks and Audiopoints under my
CDP. I didn't like the Audiopoints as they
exacerbated a vibration problem I had with my Denon 2900. I prefer
Rollerblocks to Aurios because Rollerblocks don't get out of alignment
like Aurios. I have settled on a Neuance shelf under my CDP and use
Rollerblocks under my preamp and amp.
Three week old corn rye works great under my CDP, but it has to be
consantly changed out every sixth week...gets too stiff and the highs get
brittle. Cryo'd Wonderbread works nicely, too.
Stevie buys bread based on touch and smell, and if he read some of the
posts on Audiogon he'd surely smell fish.
yes, of course, i would never buy anything without auditioning (especially at these prices) but i am always interested in other 'phile's experiences. it's one of the reasons i read audiogon. so, if anyone would like to share, i'd certainly be grateful. many thanks.
I agree Tvad, asking "which isolation device will work best" is an unanswerable question. For example, I have set up my TRL modded Sony 595 in 4 different systems over the past 3 weekends. Two of the systems liked the Stillpoints, one liked Rollerblocks, the other was happy with a HRS Nimbus/Stillpoints combo.
My point is that there is no "One" single isolation device that will "fit" every system. Anyone thinking so is in for an education ...
If you want only to "drain off" internal vibrations created within a piece of equipment, then you need a "mechanical diode" like cones, rollerballs or graphite bags. (A "mechanical diode" BTW is something that lets the vibration travel in one direction but not back the other way.) Assuming a steady, rock solid surface on which the equipment sits, this works pretty well for both transports and electronics (i.e. amps that sometimes have transformer or tube vibration.)
If you want to protect a piece of equipment from external, non-airborne vibrations that are transferred to the equipment from whatever it's sitting on, then you need a vibration damper or shock absorber like Stillpoints, Sorbothane pucks, or springs. These can make the equipment somewhat more susceptible to airborne sound energy (-- not generally a problem I've found, unless it's sitting right in front of a loud speaker.)
So, except for turntables, which in my opinion always need both type of treatment (diode at the shelf, and squishy between the diode and the plinth) most situations only require the diode (again, assuming a rock solid non-vibrating surface on which the equipment sits.)
If you feel your situation requires both types, you could try at least 9 combinations of devices picking one from each category, and then multiply by 2 to allow for the squishy-over/under-diode variation and that gives you 18 ways to Sunday. My personal preference, if anyone gives a rat's a**, is cones under sorbothane, with Stillpoints replacing both for heavier equipment (rated at 200# capacity each I believe.)
My point remains ... There is no one isolation device that will work in every system. I personally have multiple cones (brass, aluminum, maple), 1-1/4" and 1-1/2" maple blocks, Roller blocks, Aurious, Stillpoints, and HRS Nimbus discs. Some work well (sound) in one area but not another.
If you'd rather not buy them all, join an audio club. Perhaps other members will have the various isolation devices available for you to audition in your system?
I started off using Symposium Roller-blocks under my Accuphase DP-75V CD player. I had a problem leveling the Symposium shelf upon which it sat, so the bearings never centered exactly right on the Roller-blocks. I switched to the Aurios (1.0's, non-self centering) and I preferred the easier set-up and closed bearing system over the R.B's. Please note that your platform or shelf leveling must be "balls-on" when using either of these items. I have not had experience with the later versions of the Aurios which are supposed to be self-centering.
I picked up a set of Stillpoints with risers at the 2004 CES. After placing them under the Accuphase, I was shocked! The sound SUCKED! I lost all of the "air" and nuances of the mid & high frequency micro-dynamics. The Stillpoints went up for sale the next day!
Please note that both the Aurios and Roller-blocks are susceptible to cable and power cord "drag", and can easily lock up, pulled to the end of their free travel by the weight of the cords. Ganymedes are a superior design similar to the Aurios, but with a much greater range of bearing travel. They also work in the vertical as well as the horizontal plane for vibration absorption. And they will still work well if operating a few degrees off level. Alas, I have heard that the Ganymedes are now out of production!
See what I mean, cab586? What works in one system does not in another.
jes45, yes...hence the original question (which was never about 'best' or one size fits all; it was more an exercise in learning about other people's experiences).
the responses have been very interesting. i have learned quite a lot. many thanks to everyone who took the time to share their thoughts.
Tweaking is IMHO a basic task I perform for getting the most out of my equipment rather from my wallet.
So I have a combination of rolling devices + coupling cones blocks that every once in a while I try to "validate" the current set up. For me is part of the hobby thing in this case.
Currently have cones direct under source made from a special polymer and a bearing type device under the platform the cones rest on. It's about time to cross check them vs brass types !!!! Thanks for reminding me of this.
I have let more worms escape from this can than I might want to admit ...
Well I just tried the "herbies" under my big-ass-monoblocks.--(Refers to CJ 8xs monos) Cain't believe how much they add--all good,btw.(and cheap,too.) Mr. Herbie is giving me .0000000005 cents commision on each million he sells from my recommendation. If you got tube amps, sitting on nothing but an amp stand;I think you will be impressed.