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

the sound of Tao

Well-Known Member
Jul 18, 2014
1,303
744
113
#21
Thats good news Marc, especially after all the anxious wait.

It’s a good sign for the year to come... disappointment is probably the very least happy outcome when investing so much into getting somewhere good with the journey (he says while streaming relatively roontinely and tidaling carefreely/recklessly with the digi and analogue anguish seemingly all but a faded and distant memory). Bring on more music lovin moments.

Best wishes for the Happy New Year vinyl ahead.
Tao
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
6,591
1,003
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Beverly Hills, CA
#22
Hi Mr. Ron “Soothsayer” Resnick.
You’ve saved me a fortune in psychotherapy bills, or chemical help LOL.
Twice now you’ve encouraged me not to fret, and go with the flow.
First with my anxieties on the potential of the new room before it was ready. Now you mopping my brow as I paced around in circles, scratching my head being perplexed by divergences in aspects of the sound of the newly setup tt.
Thanks, and have a lovely Xmas w Tinka.
I am delighted to be of help! :)

I look forward to hearing the turntable set-up someday!

Thank you, and Merry Christmas to you and Ra!
 

Uk Paul

Member Sponsor
Sep 27, 2012
365
25
28
UK
#23
Welcome back Marc! Glad ur up and running again :) Looking forward to hearing how it all settles down and blossoms..
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
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113
E. England
#24
Paul, I’d still love to take up your offer of invite to you. I’m gleaning from Ked that things are sounding sublime at yours, I’d love to meet up, and selfishly I’d love a comparator data point to take away to help with assessing my ongoing evolution, especially your analog rig’s take on higher end energy, snap and shimmer.
Do let me know what suits you in 2018 if possible.
 
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spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
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E. England
#25
Tao, two decades of left turns, dead ends, interesting finds and epiphanies, culminated nearly 12 months ago in finding that the room really is king.
Everything since then has been in service to the room.
Now I’m trying to get the very best out of my analog of choice, with some interesting resultant tensions.
Namely the room has allowed full reign to a smoother, sweeter more extended sound. And has revealed just how coloured my old room was and how it directed my analog to sound a certain way, and totally differently here.
I’m on quite a mission to get my analog to fulfil its greater potential here.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
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E. England
#26
Ron, you both have an open invite here. Whether you like my take on analog is quite another matter. I’ll be very happy to switch over to the Eera cdp if you insist I do so on hearing my tt LOL.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
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E. England
#27
Day Four in The War Room aka my audio space, and I’m making some interesting discoveries and resultant positive adjustments.
First is a definite realisation that my sound here by definition is creamier, smoother, sweeter and less etched than my terse, strident, edgy previous space.
And this is most evident thru the high end presentation.
So I’m doing my best to ignore data points/muscle memory developed over two decades, and just taking my current baseline sound here at face value, looking to eek out more. The better data points to acknowledge are live unamplified experiences, and exemplary digital over the last six months solid.
To this end I’ve been getting tangible improvements today, mainly based on altering setup, so now sitting closer in (11’ from spkrs diagonal line to my ears), toeing in my spkrs so inner walls just visible, tuning down Zu subs crossover settings.
I’m going to give myself 6-8 wks to play around with setup, this will be time for: new stylus, energiser, psus, pwr cords, fuses, preamp tubes, Rollerblocks on Stacore under balanced transformer, to open up, and I’ll hopefully be ready by mid-Feb to get absorbed into my vinyl replay (will be the two year anniversary of starting work refurbishing the Chapel/starting work on the audio room).
 

Uk Paul

Member Sponsor
Sep 27, 2012
365
25
28
UK
#28
Paul, I’d still love to take up your offer of invite to you. I’m gleaning from Ked that things are sounding sublime at yours, I’d love to meet up, and selfishly I’d love a comparator data point to take away to help with assessing my ongoing evolution, especially your analog rig’s take on higher end energy, snap and shimmer.
Do let me know what suits you in 2018 if possible.
Of course, whenever suits you Marc, and I'm sure your TT will take time to fine tune and optimise, you can't rush anything in analog!
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
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E. England
#29
Paul, thanks.
You’re right, good things come to those who wait. So I waited four days, and good things have come to me. Today, I sweated a lot of details, and finally started to get those previously elusive high frequencies emerge from my system. It’s taken a good deal of finagling of speed accuracy, VTF, VTA, spkrs toe in, listening distance to spkrs, Zu subs crossover settings, install of Rollerblocks under balanced transformer, correct air pressure setting for linear arm, Symposium pucks under analog related psus.
Etc etc etc.
I have Ron to thank in big part also. When we chatted the other day, and I was relaying my frustration to him at not getting the high end energy I had been used to, he told me in no uncertain terms not to compare my situation here to my previous room, but just judge my current sound in my current room for what it is, and work on it. And this is what I’ve done, and I’m really really happy with how it’s all progressing/evolving.
 
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spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
113
E. England
#30
Well, good to get the Public Holiday that is Christmas out of the way LOL, and get back to more serious matters (beyond the overeating and overdrinking) ie more finetuning of my reinstalled analog.
Today, on a bit of a whim, I removed my suite of GIK panels (just keeping in the cnr bass traps). These helped calm down some of the worst excesses of my previous room, but since my current room doesn’t have any of these excesses, well maybe the GIKs are counter productive?
Well, maybe they are indeed. On their removal, there is an immediate upping in treble definition esp percussion, ride cymbals etc, more air and reverb and shimmer, just a more lifelike sound.
I can only think that the GIKs were unecesarily taming and dampening upper frequencies, because the upstick has been immediate and unambiguous.
There is a marginal worsening of imaging, a sort of increased “messiness” in the soundstage, but bass, texture and air remain in abundance, more detail apparent with these higher frequencies more audible, and so I’ll gladly take the slight diminution of orderly staging.
What is becoming more and more apparent is that despite my new found respect for digital over 6 months of full time listening to CDs only, in the second half of 2017, analog still pulls ahead with its ability to carve out a wholly substantial yet delicate picture that digital can only try to imitate at present.
And that I remain fully vindicated on choice of direct rim drive, linear air arm, Straingauge technology cart, as my analog perspective.
At this point I have zero compulsion to investigate much higher price point marques like SME, Brinkmann, TW, Kuzma, AMG etc. I’ve never felt that way before.
My remaining areas of optimisation remain finetuning the ideal subs settings on my Zus, nailing down precise speed (looking at investing in either a KAB SpeedStrobe or Monarch non contact laser tach), possibly an extra wide Stacore Advanced top platform, to allow me to position my tt more centrally over the main chassis plinth below, and a second Stacore Adv to isolate my new bespoke psus to tt motor speed controller and Straingauge energiser.
I start relistening to all my fave lps once I get the speed and Zus settings sorted, 24 months has been far to long to have had to wait.
But I can honestly say the sound I’m getting, and it’s potential to improve further, justifies me not rushing the reinstall, and ordering over a dozen advances, and waiting...and waiting some more...
 
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spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
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E. England
#31
Had a bit of a roller coaster ride on the analog reinstall, to be honest I was getting highly frustrated that the improvements in bass extension/agility and mids texture, plus air and imaging, were being hamstrung by a sort of bottleneck into the treble, constructing high freqs energy, ride cymbals and percussion definition. Indeed earlier today I was starting to doubt the whole project.
So I threw myself into sweating the install details
1- toed my Zus out
2- adjusted all Zu subs parameters incl phase, PEQ freq and gain, crossover freq and level
3- got my new tt and cart psus off the flr and onto isolation platforms plus Symposium Precision Couplers
4- got rid of all my GIK acoustic panels, incl corner bass traps
5- went OCD on adjusting VTA, and then readjusted VTF
6- played around with air flow pressure to my linear tracking air arm.
And I got a great deal of success today. With scope for further dialling in and further opening up of new analog components over the next few wks.
Now treble in my rig is never going to be highly forward and energetic like a Lyra Skala or VDH Colibri, or my low end overly warm like a Koetsu. At the end of my efforts today, I feel I’m getting a subtle hybrid of a Transfiguration Orpheus neutrality with a Lyra Parnassus rounded sweetness.
And that’s good for me.
Until the next time I post that I’m unhappy again LOL.
 
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Jul 5, 2016
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Austin, Texas
#32
I've been seriously considering Vic's arm for some time now. I don't have a second room, so noise it's my only real issue. But everything I've heard tells me it's a great arm.

I'm going to be picking up a SP10 MK2 very soon, and I really think this will be my arm. This or a SME 3012R.
 
Jul 5, 2016
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Austin, Texas
#33
I'd also love to see some pictures of your analog setup.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
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#34
Lordcloud, I thought some pics had been posted. I’m not brilliant at this bit of living in the modern world . I’ll get around to it.
The Terminator could be a super match for yr DD, it’s super low noise, very start-stop especially in the bass, and just allows details to emerge from blackness. I’m having a bit of an effort to fully dial in my current setup, but this is more to do with my cart and room acoustics than the tt or arm, I believe.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
113
E. England
#35
Well, 3 weeks of sheer burn in Hell is morphing into the kind of sound I could hardly have expected, or reasonably hoped for.
As my Straingauge energiser, psu to this, and psu to tt motor have started to open up at the 40 hr mark, my treble is finally revealing itself.
My room is a major impvt over my old London sound, sweeter, smoother and warmer, with none of the old harshness and stridency.
This is being reflected in a less “in your face” top end, a much more organic energy to the presentation.
And as the electronics are opening up, I’m really liking what I’m hearing.
Add this to the clear step up my bass and mids demonstrated on Day One of the install, and further evolution here, I’ve had a few tracks that are really generating a strong emotional reaction.
Comparison of my rig on the Stacore v back on my old Symposium rack is no contest victory for the Stacore, the pneumatic platform again proving its worth.
I’ve heard an SME30/2 recently, really like it, and respect the sound. But it’s saying something that I’m confident my rig gives away very little to such illustrious competition, at a fraction of the cost.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
113
E. England
#36
I’m approx 60 hours into my burn in of Straingauge energiser, and bespoke psus to this and my tt motor.
In the last 2 weeks I’ve also taken to powering down my Straingauge via its psu a few hours each day.
And obviously, the stylus, tonearm unipivot points, arm mount, tonearm wire RCA plugs, arm air supply transformer, preamp tubes and balanced transformer Rollerblocks, all have 60 hours on them too. Plus I’m assimilating the effects of my tt on the Stacore Adv platform.
Not quite a 180 from the dog days of the initial sound of the install a week before Christmas.
But things took a massive step fwd today.
In particular the treble which is where all my frustration has been aimed at, for the first time was really good. And without analysing things, the things I kept noticing today were: cymbal tone and definition, trails, reverb, shimmer, percussion lines.
Precisely all that was missing on Day One.
This allied to (or indeed, a result of) increased air and dimensionality.
What I’m fast learning is to unlearn my previous sound in London. This room is SO different, no harsh reflections, no stridency, a lot smoother and sweeter.
And it’s in the treble that I’m having to make most mental reappraisal. My treble is just not going to have the “edge” that it did in London. But truthfully, it’s a whole lot more accurate here.
 
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spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
113
E. England
#37
Well, I’m 9 weeks into my analog reinstall, 90 hours burn-in on stylus, Straingauge energiser, bespoke psus to latter and tt motor speed controller.
That first 3 weeks was brutal, no highs, no delicacy, no enjoyment.
Then getting speed right, and sweating this burn until 60 hrs, and finally the sound begins to “breathe”.
And now in the last fortnight, esp the last few days, now at 90-100 hours, I can honestly say that top end is back, with all the other attributes that were great from day one ie bass, mids, air, texture, imaging. stage depth.
I’ve never been so happy with my analog, and am gorging on lps that have been missing from my life for 2 long, long years.
 
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Jul 5, 2016
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Austin, Texas
#38
Congrats on things sounding the way you want them to! I'll be getting your same arm at some point. I'm very much looking forward to hearing just how good it is
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
8,814
961
113
E. England
#39
Hey Lordcloud, apologies for not being able to get those photos to you.
Re yr choice on Terminator, you’ve made a wise choice.
The Terminator totally outperforms my previous SME V w VDH wiring, and by all accounts some owners of SME IV, Graham Phantom, Air Tangent, Kuzma Airline have switched to it.
I can’t get enough of it’s speed, start/stop quality, clean extended bass, ability to deal w warps, and all round balance of neutrality and musicality
I contend it remains the biggest bang for yr £/$/€/¥/(“insert currency of choice”) in analog, and maybe the high end ever.
The only arm I would trade up to that doesn’t cost stupid money would be a reconditioned SAEC506 (knife edge bearings attended to) which I heard recently, and blew me away.
 
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