Trans Fi Salvation rim drive tt and Terminator air-bearing linear tracking arm

spiritofmusic

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Gerard, my biggest fear was the feedback loop from Roadrunner speed tach, correcting speed every revolution:

1...not as bleeding edge as GP Monaco 18 gazillion adjustments per revolution, so maybe too coarse.

2...Vic designer who was adamant feedback loop was all wrong, his experience of greyness and graininess introduced with said loop.

However, fears unfounded so far, my only caveat, and this is an open ended one, is a hint less verve or propulsion on my less well recorded but well worn favourites albums.
 
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spiritofmusic

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A week on, and I know I can't go back to the stock motor. Have to agree with Lagonda, it's not the spot on accuracy, it's the lack of drift/speed wavering. This is bringing a real calm and authority to the sound, with images locked in a more layered soundstage.

So the sound is more grounded whilst also being more airy...seemingly aspects you'd think at odds with each other, but actually in perfect harmony.

Next up is greater vibration management with IsoDamp to the motor pod interior, a thicker Symposium Svelte pad under the pod, and a Farad Super3 24V DC LPS to the motor.

Other than Bocchino-terminated new Zavfino Litz-76 tonearm wire, and an Audio Machina V8 anti vibration pad at cart-armwand junction, that's as far as I can take my uber modded vinyl playback system.

I remain amazed by the overall upgrade this motor has wrought. It's across the board, on all levels including detail resolution, microdynamics, imaging, air and layering.
 
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Vienna

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Indeed it’s amazing what Bill has designed and achieved with this combo, especially if you consider the price point.
 

spiritofmusic

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Can't agree more, Vienna. My fellow Salvation/Terminator owning friend did me a big service keeping me interested in this option after he took the plunge.

What's particularly pleasing is that I'm maintaining all the propulsiveness of my previous motor, with added refinement and introspection, meaning my familiar library of prog rock and fusion are as energetic and tonally saturated as ever, but my 100% acoustic music albums have a real extra life and zest to them.

I had a real fear that extra accuracy would lead to sterility and "detail for detail's sake". LPs like Pat Metheny "Falcon And Snowman" with it's mix of choral, percussion, vocal, modern classical motifs and full band, are really compelling.
 

spiritofmusic

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Farad Super3 LPS soon to be ordered. Feedback all round and input from designer filling me with confidence this upgrade will be wholly positive.

My mate with selfsame tt/arm remarks on the SOTA motor having a healthy uptick with the Farad. And reports that even the Derenville motor does well with it augurs well for me.

My only slight nagging concern with recently installed SOTA motor was a *hint* of seeming thinness in mids, leaving a slightly steely feel to music. Now I know some of this could be from the SMPS wall wart, but also inherent to the new motor. But also installing in quick succession uber low noise floor power cords, low noise tubes, and a tt motor system with more accuracy, meant that some system imbalances might be apparent and need finagling.

So I first removed the tiny gel pads off motor pod base meaning closer contact with Symposium Svelte underneath. Then I took a little time to adjust my Zu subs. And boosting them a tad in level has filled out the lower mids/bass nicely, the sound is warmer and richer with no compromise on the new speed, transparency, air and imaging that I'm achieving with these recent changes.
 
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Lagonda

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Farad Super3 LPS soon to be ordered. Feedback all round and input from designer filling me with confidence this upgrade will be wholly positive.

My mate with selfsame tt/arm remarks on the SOTA motor having a healthy uptick with the Farad. And reports that even the Derenville motor does well with it augurs well for me.

My only slight nagging concern with recently installed SOTA motor was a *hint* of seeming thinness in mids, leaving a slightly steely feel to music. Now I know some of this could be from the SMPS wall wart, but also inherent to the new motor. But also installing in quick succession uber low noise floor power cords, low noise tubes, and a tt motor system with more accuracy, meant that some system imbalances might be apparent and need finagling.

So I first removed the tiny gel pads off motor pod base meaning closer contact with Symposium Svelte underneath. Then I took a little time to adjust my Zu subs. And boosting them a tad in level has filled out the lower mids/bass nicely, the sound is warmer and richer with no compromise on the new speed, transparency, air and imaging that I'm achieving with these recent changes.
As i advised you originally Marc, you should try a week with your original motor/controller as a reference point once you have gotten used to the new combo. The proof is in the listening, not just the numbers. ;)
 

the sound of Tao

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Farad Super3 LPS soon to be ordered. Feedback all round and input from designer filling me with confidence this upgrade will be wholly positive.

My mate with selfsame tt/arm remarks on the SOTA motor having a healthy uptick with the Farad. And reports that even the Derenville motor does well with it augurs well for me.

My only slight nagging concern with recently installed SOTA motor was a *hint* of seeming thinness in mids, leaving a slightly steely feel to music. Now I know some of this could be from the SMPS wall wart, but also inherent to the new motor. But also installing in quick succession uber low noise floor power cords, low noise tubes, and a tt motor system with more accuracy, meant that some system imbalances might be apparent and need finagling.

So I first removed the tiny gel pads off motor pod base meaning closer contact with Symposium Svelte underneath. Then I took a little time to adjust my Zu subs. And boosting them a tad in level has filled out the lower mids/bass nicely, the sound is warmer and richer with no compromise on the new speed, transparency, air and imaging that I'm achieving with these recent changes.
There is a reason they call them wall warts... not nice :(

Good move with the Farad Marc... would fit very nicely into a Christmas stocking.
 
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spiritofmusic

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As i advised you originally Marc, you should try a week with your original motor/controller as a reference point once you have gotten used to the new combo. The proof is in the listening, not just the numbers. ;)
Milan, there's really no comparison. I did a little A/B today, and other than a tad more warmth, the level of gauziness was easily audible in the old motor. The SOTA kit is superior in pretty much every way. And just as my stock motor benefitted from a better transformer, and the Derenvile motor benefits from the Farad according to reports on WBF, this is a totally logical pathway.

Let me get this done, so I can get onto my streamer/dac investigation next year.
 
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spiritofmusic

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There is a reason they call them wall warts... not nice :(

Good move with the Farad Marc... would fit very nicely into a Christmas stocking.
AKA "small enough to get it past the GF" lol
 
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spiritofmusic

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Interestingly, this motor and the changes it's wringing out of my system is making adjustments either right or wrong, and giving me a new perspective on every LP that I'm listening to.

So, Zu subs settings are easily ascertained as more correct or less correct. Before, especially in my old room, there was an endless variance without ever quite getting my subs right.

Interestingly I've thrown my record weight out. My tt is specifically designed not to use any LP damping at all, neither weight, clamp or periphery ring. However the record weight I bought had the edge on performance before. Now it's shown to just add a hint of hard coloration, as if it's tipping the frequency balance up, or reflecting/trapping vibrations back into the LP and thence into the stylus.

VTA is somewhat more critical as well, a small range of adjustments seems positive depending on the LP chosen.

Most fascinatingly, different perspectives on each LP played. Many records that were enjoyable before have taken huge leaps into marrying superior sonics and immersive enjoyability. I'm really rediscovering my Pat Metheny collection. Some LPs that were diffident and grey before are reinvigorated. And a small number of albums that I considered hugely evocative in the past are being shown to be a little lacking sonically, as limitations in mastering are laid bare. This is quite the discovery to me, but I know the mark of the best systems is not to sugar coat recordings. And it's now being demonstrated to me how a certain level of haze or gauze with my old motor overlaid every recording. This is mainly gone, and despite wake up calls on some old favourites, I know I have a way more truthful, but still hugely musical, analog front end. I'm just making some reappraisals on what really rank as great sounding LPs in my collection.
 
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spiritofmusic

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A really interesting (for me at least, as someone who's been on a long evolving journey with analog) and enlightening experiment on getting the most out of the new SOTA motor, with one major step left to complete.

The Eclipse motor is installed in the top of a cylindrical pod, leaving the bottom of pod as empty void, save for various internal cables.

So after encouragement from my friend in US running the same rig, I've experimented with applying some IsoDamp strips to inside of pod void.

Started with damping 100% of the internal pod area, but settled on about 25% in the end. Just enough...but enough, nevertheless.

And got lucky with isolation under the pod. Removed the stock squishy blobs, first of all tried my existing Symposium Svelte pad. Nice, no complaints. But I thought I'd try some hard footers, so I then tried Symposium Rollerblocks Jnrs...but just the top halves sans Rollerballs.

Wow! Just a big, instant uptick. I've carefully listened for any hint of metallic hardness, and I can't say for sure if there definitely isn't any. But my strong opinion is that the great improvement in attack, dynamics and bass articulation, that is a result is not a coloration but a greater reveal of the superiority of this motor over my previous stock one.

After several years of trying numerous footers and isolation systems, I think I know when I'm recognising a change which is more the sound of the tweak, and when it's more a reveal of the component being isolated. This very much feels like the latter.

And a big final change to come. Farad Super3 24V/2.2A LPS ordered for the motor, to be used with Sablon cbls: DC lead and Elite pwr cord. Big hopes for all this too.

Right now, I am amazed at the changes wrought by an all-round superior motor, especially in way less speed drift and likely better vibration management. Feels like a game changer, and beyond this LPS, my forthcoming Zavfino Litz-76/Bocchinos RCAs tonearm wire and armwand Audio Machina V8 anti vibration tweak, that's my long and winding analog journey done.
 
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PeterA

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That’s a nice post Marc. I’m curious how you knew too much isodamp was too much in the pod for the motor. Can you describe the sound when you went from no isodamp to 100% isodamp and then down to 25% isodamp? And how did you adhere it to the inside of the motor pod?
 

spiritofmusic

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Peter, the main drawback with the Eclipse motor is it's lack of extra engineered vibration isolation. It's a motor in a housing, and nothing else. Anything more is left to the end user.

So, the new motor in short time is showing itself to be superior to stock in terms of accurate speed, and critically lack of drift/waver.

But that undamped bare bones metal pod, 50% housing the motor/50% void, has a tendency to ring, and thus damping is a must.

Some owners use sand/lead shot, but my mate suggested IsoDamp stuck to the interior surface of the pod void, and so off I went. He suggested I would hear some real differences going from zero to 100% coverage.

And, so right he was. Zero damping, sound forthright and certain, but just a hint of toppiness/steeliness, lacking a little warmth, compared to my stock motor.

100% coverage...sound dead and woolly, lost a lot of high end info and air.

Stripping progressive amounts out led to one situation having a nice balance of attack, air and warmth. A real "voila" moment.

Ditto the idea of stuffing the void with cotton wool balls. Nice idea on paper, awful in practice.

What I learnt from this episode is that there can really be too much of "good" thing. In this instance, the motor needs to breathe and only be tamed a little.

IsoDamp is very sticky stuff, easy to adhere to the metal pod.
 
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PeterA

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Thank you Marc. That is more or less what I suspected. Overdampening can kill the sound. I’m glad you stuck with it and found the right balance.
 

spiritofmusic

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Peter, this is a game changer for me, at the level of Stacore upgrade and beyond. What's especially impressive is that I couldn't see how the motor was going to improve things at all, let alone this radically. I mean, as the Roadrunner speed tach swung 33.100 to 33.600 revolution to revolution on my stock motor, I heard no discernable "rightness" at 33.333 as opposed to the extremes of 33.1 or 33.6. So, how would a motor promising 0.05% stability and coincidental lack of significant waver appear to be better? Really challenged my mindset.

Well, evidence is in the proof of the pudding. The stripping back of fuzz, gauze and all-round thrum and grainy greyness that I absolutely was only aware by inference, in that certain acoustic music was never as transparent as it could be, but not as factors formally recognisable as such, is absolutely striking and radical here. It feels like a final frontier change for me, and all that can improve things further will be further noise reduction via the Farad LPS and Sablon cables/Rollerblocks footers.

What also has been a joy was the epiphany today of half-Rollerblocks under the motor pod, completing the vibration isolation management started with IsoDamp experiment. Such a boost as well.
 
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Vienna

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Peter, this is a game changer for me, at the level of Stacore upgrade and beyond. What's especially impressive is that I couldn't see how the motor was going to improve things at all, let alone this radically. I mean, as the Roadrunner speed tach swung 33.100 to 33.600 revolution to revolution on my stock motor, I heard no discernable "rightness" at 33.333 as opposed to the extremes of 33.1 or 33.6. So, how would a motor promising 0.05% stability and coincidental lack of significant waver appear to be better? Really challenged my mindset.

Well, evidence is in the proof of the pudding. The stripping back of fuzz, gauze and all-round thrum and grainy greyness that I absolutely was only aware by inference, in that certain acoustic music was never as transparent as it could be, but not as factors formally recognisable as such, is absolutely striking and radical here. It feels like a final frontier change for me, and all that can improve things further will be further noise reduction via the Farad LPS and Sablon cables/Rollerblocks footers.

What also has been a joy was the epiphany today of half-Rollerblocks under the motor pod, completing the vibration isolation management started with IsoDamp experiment. Such a boost as well.
Hi Marc,

I am reading your latest posts and it seems that they do match with my findings with BLDC motors.
once I got my RR, Anaheim motors and Condor controller to replace the noisy Hurst AC motors there was no way back.

Back at that time I managed to tame vibrations and the caused resonances by adding lead and lead shot at the housing. The lead shot theoretically transforms the vibration into heat.
I agree that rubber feet below the motor pod is not a good idea as they do not permit the grounding of the vibrations which are then affecting the platter through the belt . These feet are almost never level thus the motor’s pulley and platter are not level too.

The last few weeks I am enjoying the Derenville motor. Rainer did a fantastic job with damping, by using proprietary material.
Lastly I found Derenville adjustable motor base very useful, it ensures the optimum height and level adjustment of the motor.

I am glad for your successful purchase
 
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spiritofmusic

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Vienna, the Eclipse motor housing really precludes the use of lead shot. You certainly can't use the shot loose, although one could encapsulate it in a small bag. Something I could look at.

However from my 100% IsoDamp BAD/25% IsoDamp GOOD findings, the Eclipse motor really is sensitive to too much damping, and it might take a few goes to determine if mass loading with shot works.

What's fascinating is how the right amount of finagling allows the SQ from the new motor to really lock into place. Judicious IsoDamp, Symposium Rollerblock/hard couplers, and very soon, hopefully Farad LPS/Sablon loom.
 

Vienna

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Sorry for not clarifying, the lead shot should be enclosed in a bag
 

spiritofmusic

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Vienna, I'll check with my US based friend who kept me in the loop on this motor on the tt we both own. My impression is that he got more mileage out of the IsoDamp than lead shot...I'll check with him.
 

spiritofmusic

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I regularly use Adrian Legg acoustic guitar vinyl as an ultimate test of my sound. There's an overflowing of joy in his playing, he has amazing technique but delivered in a hugely soulful and human way, and his albums are brilliantly recorded, highlighting his multiple techniques, huge tone and timbre, air and dynamics.

I've also heard his stuff on a cutting edge digital Extreme demo a few months back, so have a good benchmark for my current sound, where it's going.

So I popped lp Guitars And Other Cathedrals on today, this is always a workout for my system. And it's become apparent my vinyl front end has been transformed in all the right areas with the replacement of my stock tt motor by the SOTA kit.

Dynamics are really grabbing my attention, there's a real urgency and propulsion to the sound. Much more the impact you get in live music. This insistence is a thing one can not even be sure you don't have, so to be reminded of it, can only be good. Much closer to the illusion of live.

Critically this extra energy and explosive reflexes is not accompanied by enhanced leading edges, dryness or shrillness. Tonal density is as good, if not better than before, and now air and layering in the soundstage are all enhanced/revealed. This is meaning my efforts at vibration management and isolation are paying off, and the music is both striking and palpable, and able to breathe.

This album has always sounded good, but it's off the charts on speed and texture now, so much better than before.

My recollection of hearing it on the Extreme is pretty good, and I would say my presentation with the new motor maintains a healthy margin.

Previous changes/epiphanies.
This change/game changer.
 

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