What's under YOUR CD player?


Will I really improve the sound from my Ikemi CD player by putting something under it, other than the walnut shelf it sits on inside my antique hutch stereo cabinet?

Will upgrading the power cord to a PS minilab cable help also?

Or, should I just play the music?

(it's fun though, isn't it!)
jbatlanta
I put a DIY sandbox under my Sony 9000ES and swapped the stock power cord for one of Ernie's DIY Belden Firewire power cords -- made a BIG difference in the sound. The CDP now sounds a lot smoother with much more detail.
Aurios Pro at the top of the structure under the CDP.
Bright Star Big Rock in the middle.
Aural Thrills Turntable Isolation Box at the bottom.
Solid Tech 'Feet of Silence'- use under transport/CDP
Symposium Roller Bearings on top of a Purist Audio Isolation shelf.

I agree with Tsrart about replacing the power cord on the Sony 9000. I got a big improvement swapping mine too.
Putting Tara Labs Vanishing Points under my Linn Genki made a HUGE difference. Three points, one in front & two in back (ala YBA) made everything wider, deeper and less glary. No joke, I took them out after a few months to see if I was imaginaing things and the soundstage just collapsed. AC cords on the other hand changed the sound but just made it different, not better. Most people suggest sticking to the Linn AC cable and I would have to agree. Since your Ikemi is the same chassis I would be shocked if some good iso points (BDR does not go well with Linn IMHO) like the Tara Labs would have similar improvements.
Audio Aero Capitol Mark 2 comes with BDR cones,underneath is a bright star air mass 2 underneath this is a bright star big rock setting on concrete floor.
I have my CDP sitting on a Sisturm Platform designed to couple my CDP. This is one beautiful piece of engineering. Imagine to 2" brass cones, one point up, one point down, threaded together through a steel triangular resonant coupler. Can't imagine? Go to their website: audiopoints.com and you'll see the whole deal. You'll think you bought a new CDP once you put your baby on top of this system. They are amazing. I'm not a decoupler. While I know it works for many, it's really quite an impossibility to achieve, especially when you (we forget) take into account airborne resonances. Then the very things you're using to decouple, keep those nasty microphonous resonances right where you don't want them. Coupling. That
's the ticket. The technology and physics is still a mystery to many of us. On their website, they and Robert, will explain, very patiently, what the whole deal is about. Their stuff has a money back guarentee. Whaddaya got to lose? Happy New Year, warren
my "digital stack" top-to-bottom:
CDP
Nordost Pulsar Points - titanium option
Zoethecus Z-Slab shelf
Vibrapods
(all this is atop the rack's shelf)

JPS Digital AC power cord

Your own situation dictates what will work best for you - the same tweaks in another rig will have some effects, but they will be different & not necessarily optimum. The only way to find out what works best for you & with your sonic preferences is to experiment. Try lots of different things & then sell what you don't keep. Use the aforementioned suggestions only as guidelines. Cones alone come in numerous variations, & they are all different sounding - aluminum, brass, titanium, steel, carbon fiber, ceramic, polycrystal, wood, (you-name-it).
If you spell your coffee laughing while reading this I'm not responsable. First there is 1" bubblewrap[from advice here on AG]. Thanks again. On top of the Bubblewrap is a maple butcher block. On top of the block are three Smitty Balls[ my version of the DIYumas] The cd player floates nicely on this[leveled] with a sand bag setting on the top cover...It took a bit of trial and error listening and changing until I liked what I heard. After all, all the above methods obviously work for their owners. You have to decide which "effect" furthers your enjoyment of your cds. Happy New Year everyone.
dust bunnies
Many PCs to choose from. I think you will be surprised at the performance of a good PC. The Neuance shelf on a rack or Sistrum rack greatly improves the sound you will get from your CDP. Good advice from some above.
I use those gel filled wrist pads for computer typing under my CD player. Great for vibration absorption. I place small (2 by 2) ceramic tile under them for stability. Works great.
Sony 9000ES... set of Walker Valid Points brass cones on their matching lead discs on a lead filled Lovan Sovereign stand. Tara Labs Decade power cord.
I use Audioquest sorbothane pucks under my Sony SCD-777es. I wish they weren't as tall as the are (about 1") because the Sony is top loading and I have a turntable as my primary source. With the sony on the second shelf it gets crowded sometimes.
Try some isolation cones or isolation platforms, simply search "isolation" on AUdiogon and you will find tons.
I have a Karik III and I use Audiopoints brass cones between the player and a Michael Green rack. I found the pneumatic platforms (Townshend and Brightstar) and Vibrapods slowed the pacing and bass, although they are smooth-sounding. Audiopoints opened up the top, reduced the digital glare and added depth and space, with absolutely zero trade-off. (Mapleshades are also very good). My experience, BTW, is that power cords are not very meaningful to Linn equipment, especially pieces with switching power supplies, like the Ikemi. I tried the JPS Digital and others, and also tried Shunyata and others on my Karik and on my Lingo, and sent them all back. PC's did improve my Majik and my old LK280, so the amps seem to be a different story.
Vibrapods under; 5 lbs of sand on top.
Neuance
Warrehn beat me to it! I also like the Audiopoint line.
Warrehn beat me to it! I also like the Audiopoint line.
Neuance Alpha shelf with the cdp supported by myrtlewood blocks. There is a picture showing the maple boards on the wall stand in my virtual system.
To decouple or couple? That is the question. You cannot mix the two. Well, you can, but you're killing your road to happy coupling...I'm a coupler, and have been happy ever since...It's doable...total isolation isn't. Never! Happy listening.
4 Walker tuning discs on top, Walker Ultimate Valid points underneath 1 in front 2 in back, and that all sits on a Sounds of Silence Vibraplane.
Nordost pulsar points which rest atop of Yamamura Art-Q Dampers. This has netted very interesting results...sonically speaking. Works OK for me anyway.
Meridian 508.24 CDP, on top of SoundSpikes, on top of Black Diamond "The Shelf," on top of Atlantic Reference rack with spikes under each shelf and SoundSpikes for the rack's feet and filled with Fijian sand.
CDP sets on Aurios 1.2 with bearing on top. Use Mapleshade brass heavyhats for tuning top of CDP.

Still toying with the idea of floating entire audio rack on top of Aurios.

The Sistrum approach is interesting giving you in effect a two pointed cone. Several companies are catching on now and offering the triple point cone to reduce surface contact.

I do own some large triple point brass cones and they work very well.
until last night i didn't believe that putting something under the Cd player will iprove the sound...i tried sand, bike innertubes, cones, etc...well, last night a friend of mine that makes a lot of covers for turntables made me a platform supported by air...yes, air!...this thing is made out of two plexiglass sheets with a proprietary suspension between them that creates this cushion of air...the bass became more tight (it was kinda boomy before), quieter background...i wasn't imagining...i had 3 other friends over and we all heard the same thing...i guess, these things work...but, as i said at the beginning, i've never heard a difference between cones, sand bags, innertubes and nothing else but the shelf...until last night...this thing is amazing...
I put a turntable on the shelf above my CD player. Improved the sound of my system immensely. The best sound is achieved with the the CD player turned off.
Right now, my Levinson 37 transport and 360S DAC sit on a regular ol' MDF shelf. I bought two Townshend Seismic Sinks for them, but the Sinks shifted music to such an analytic character that it almost made my ears bleed. Fortunately, the Sinks worked very well under tube pre-amp and amp.

I've also tried Vibrapods and thick Maple slabs to no avail. The Levinson components are heavy (35 lbs? each) and have rather specialized looking accordian shaped rubber and metal feet. I'm slowly coming to the realization that the stock footers control vibrations quite well. I'll continue to try other stuff though;>). Cheers. Craig
Neuance, www.neuanceaudio.com
In the past a variety of things have sat under my digital gear. Inner tubes, rubber footers, BDR cones (with and without "Those Things"), etc. have taken up residence at one time or another.

Currently there are two 5 lb. Ziplock bags (actually they're double bagged) of #30 mesh industrial sand on top of the CAL Delta transport. There is another 5 lb. bag on top. The Alpha DAC sits on two of these bags with a 2.5 lb. bag of sand on top. Each component is on its own MDF shelf that sits on spikes attached to a tubular steel rack that has also been filled with sand.

Interestingly, this set up sounds the same as the BDR Cones w/Those Things, but is way more stable (the CAL gear is a lightweight ~8 lbs. each).

BTW, this looks like hell, so I'm looking for some nice covers for the sand bags.
I have DH cones under and a Shakti stome on top, it helped my Karik.
Under my Sony 9000ES CD/SACD/DVD player.

Improvement in bass and clarity over the Audioquest Big Feet that I was previously using.

I bought them for $175 used at Audiogon.
Linn CD-12 sits on Symposium Svelt Shelf which sits on Aurios, Marantz SA-1 sits on Relaxa I magnetic levitation shelf......both units are on a Zoethecus rack with Z-slab shelves.

i have experimented over the years with all kinds of cones and pucks....the Aurios seem to be the most consistent performer....and the mag-lev seems to be about equal. i get blacker blacks, more dynamics and snap without any added sterility or hardness.

if i didn't own the Zoethecus i would seriously consider the Grand Prix shelf system and eliminate other tweaks. my wife likes the way the Zoethecus looks (and the Grand Prix looks kinda industrial) so i will most likely continue to use all the little tweaks to optimize it.
Mike - interesting that you are the first poster (can't remember reading about another) that is using a mag lev application. While not familiar with your particular shelf I did find this one surfing around - can't seem to find anyone here thats using it - can you comment on if its similar to yours?

http://www.gr-research.com/levitator.htm

Tx Ron
hi Ron, the Relaxa 1 appears to be very similar in concept to the GR Reasearch/Dodd Audio 'Levitator'. the only question would be how the 'Levitator' stays level....i can't tell from the picture on the web site.

i took the Relaxa 1 to my local audio club meeting and everyone wanted to play with it.....it is just so cool the way it works. i would own one even if the damn thing didn't sound good.....it stays perfectly level by means of poles in 2 corners and very smooth bearings. the only issue is that the weight of your component must be in the proper weight range to allow it to have the proper loading like any 'spring' so the 'action' keeps it decoupled from the rack. it should 'settle' for a few seconds after it is disturbed if it is working properly.

click 'system' next to my name for a picture.....also, i attached a link.

http://www.gtaudio.com/accessor.html

enjoy.
Ron, mind if I comment on your question. I also have SAP Relaxa 1. I firstly tried it under my CD transport & found the result was the best. However, the balance leaned toward high frequency maybe because the digital out, which was on the corner, was affected by the magnetic field and so induced jitters. Therefore, I used the Relaxa 1 under my turntable now. It improved the trackability for bad-conditioned records a lot. I think the Relaxa 1 will be better than the GR's you posted on top of unleveled base because the poles to fix the plate in Relaxa 1 are ball-bearing like Aurios to resolve the side force.
I placed some Mack Truck wehhl bearings under my Sony SCD-777ES and they sound similiar to the Daruma III bearings I tried.

Keep on trucking!
Neuance.
Subaruguru, How do you have the Neuance shelf supported on the audio rack and what other supports, if any, are you using? I use the points that were included threaded into a thick maple shelf to support the Neuance shelf near the corners. I started with the stock feet on the cdp and after trying a few other supports I'm back with the stock feet. This shelf is the best isolation device I have tried and I plan to get one for my amp also when it becomes available. I have not tried the DH Labs cones with the Neuance and was curious if anyone else has had a good experience adding those or other footers.
My equipment sits atop Neuance platforms, which are of the newer design conceived for a broader range of applications. This solution enabled me to use my non-audio grade furniture and get uncompromised performance.

In my system, the new design is implemented in a “groupings” arrangement (i.e. components are grouped to share platforms - three total). The increased energy absorbtion capacity allows this. And, multiple platforms helps to maintain a reasonably low mass per platform and eliminates any potential transfer from the “noisier” components. Speak to Ken Lyon/Greater Ranges, much of the preceeding statements are from him.

I have had the platforms for only about a month and have been trying different things to separate them from my plate glass shelves. Ken Lyon feels that any small, hard footer will work. I am using Aurios 1.0s in contact with the underside of the Neuance atop the points of BDR mk4s, with the flat base on top of the glass shelf.

I can not believe that this can get any better.
My equipment sits atop Neuance platforms, which are of the newer design conceived for a broader range of applications. This solution enabled me to use my non-audio grade furniture and get uncompromised performance.

In my system, the new design is implemented in a “groupings” arrangement (i.e. components are grouped to share platforms - three total). The increased energy absorbtion capacity allows this. And, multiple platforms helps to maintain a reasonably low mass per platform and eliminates any potential transfer from the “noisier” components. Speak to Ken Lyon/Greater Ranges, much of the preceeding statements are from him.

I have had the platforms for only about a month and have been trying different things to separate them from my plate glass shelves. Ken Lyon feels that any small, hard footer will work. I am using Aurios 1.0s in contact with the underside of the Neuance atop the points of BDR mk4s, with the flat base on top of the glass shelf.

I can not believe that this can get any better.
Yup, I'm letting my Neuance that's INSIDE my Arts & Crafts HEAVY cabinet sit on upturned threaded spikes that are screwed through the shelf. Howver, for the EMC-1 ON TOP of the cabinet my wife didn't dare let me drill holes, so small upturned cones do well.
As Ken says, "any small hard footer will do". The issue here is just to isolate the Neuance from its "base" with rigidity and low surface area. Even thumbtacks (the big ones!) should be fine! Have fun. Ern
Mine rests on a 3" thick slab of berylium which floats in a vat (a welded-up construction made of unobtainium) of mercury that is suspended from the ceiling (I hate footfall effects!). It works great, but it's a real bitch every time I have to relocate.

I'm aware of the possible toxic side effects, but figure we've all gotta sacrifice for that last little bit of detail, PRAT, glorious mid-range, imaging/soundstage, and all of the other buzzwords du jour.
jp
Subject: Exciting News! Announcing Flatulence * by GreaterRanges

A recent financial epiphany and subsequent reversal of my philosophical,ethical and moral standards initiated by our generous investors has spurred the overnite development of an all new isolation product from GreaterRanges:

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Flatulence* steals from virtually every known isolation measure of mass market appeal and dubious merit in order to make my company a decent profit for a change.Pricing will reflect the sheer size and prestige of the product with our CES introductory special @ US$59,899.oo each plus shipping for the hand rubbed and spit polished rosewood veneer standard model( rare & endangered tropical hardwood finishes available upon request).

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With Flatulence* the sound coming from your system will be as toxic as the device itself.

Glossy Photos, technical details and snazzy charts coming soon.
Sneak preview for CES attendees-A special export model for the world market tentatively named "Incontinence" will also be shown at CES in static display.

Regards,
Ken Lyon
Greater Ranges/Flatulence*

------------------------------------------------------------
Flash! Just In-
Audio Press goes Nutz for Flatulence*.

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Who needs Home Theatre when you can watch music like this?"
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Rob Doorstop - Listening Fatigue

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Sam Tellall - Quadraphile & 8 Track Review

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Experience Flatulence in Suite 2115,Alexis Park
Caterham1700, is that aroma therapy you're talking about?
I've heard The new "Flatulence Products" touted here!!

THEY STINK!!

PS....Tremendous post Caterham1700!!!
Please send me six Signature Flatulence* Iso-Field Effect Reverberation Nulliers right away! You can charge it to my overseas acount we used last time Ken.
As always you stand on the cutting edge, I'll be interested to see how the "Bubble Wrap" holds up under the Flatulence. I'm concerned about the weight, but for just $65,000 each it's a steal either way!
Love your products Ken, please write me at imsodumb/idiot.com
In all seriousness, my set up is almost as absurd, but every addition made a difference.
Starting on the wood floor I use three Arios pro isolation bearings, each with a 3/8" steel ball in the center hole. A two inch sandstone slab sits on the steel balls. I then use a three tier Mana rack system with glass shelf on the top tier. There is a layer of 5/8" "Air Tight" anti-static bubble wrap with a Neuance Beta shelf resting on it. I then have three Arios pro isolated bearings with Orchard Bay titanium down turned cones in the center hole of the Arios. The two back feet of the Sony SCD-1 and the center foot rest on the OB cones. The set-up is the culmination of many years of tweaking and testing, to date it's the best I've gotten from my system.
Subaruguru and others Neuance users; Are you using the stock feet on the components or something else?