Systems by douglas P
The man-cave set-up.
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The man-cave set-up., a Integrated A/V System by douglas P
16' x 18'6
It's not really an integrated A/V system. It's actually two completely separate systems that just happen to share the same room and cabinets. The left side, which is the 2-channel audio side is built around a 2009 pair of Bose 901 Series VI loudspeakers. Sufficient power is supplied by the Adcom GFA5500 amp, which I bought in 2010, I believe. Pre is an NAD C 165BEE, while sources consist of the NAD C 565BEE CD/DAC and the Slim Devices Squeezebox Classic, that you see in the pic, plus a TEAC CD recorder, Akai cassette deck and Technics turntable that live behind the left-side doors with the Bose 901 EQ. On the right side are the A/V toys: Marantz NR1602 7.1 channel AVR, Marantz UD5005 universal Blu-ray player and the Dish 211 HD sat box. The speakers are a/d/s/ HT400's up front, with a a pair of a/d/s/ HT300's in the back. Subs are a pair of Velodyne DLS4000R's, which are also in the back corners. Behind the right-side doors is where the old Sony VCR and Panasonic DVD-recorder live peaceably together.
Rock and country from ol' Hank and Elvis on, Classic Jazz, Smooth Jazz, the classics, vocal music of the 50's and 60's.
Very difficult! I originally had klipschorns in it (I "designed" it for them.) but a little knowledge being a dangerous thing, they sounded horrible in it (horrible in consideration of their size and cost, that is). I gave up on it for two-channel, sold the k-horns and moved my main 2-channel stuff into another room and proceeded to go through a procession of speakers in an attemt to find "the" ones. Then on a bit of a whim, I bought a new pair of 901's in '09 to put in the adjacent man-cave -just for fun. Sweet Mary, Mother of Todd, they sounded fantastic in there! Long story short: They are now the centerpiece of my main 2-channel rig! Truth is stranger than fiction!!
In keeping with the decidedly contrarian nature of my set-up, the only treatments, per se, are about six inches of rpg absorption, in a 2' x 10' strip centered on the back wall of the room between the tops of the CD cabinets and the ceiling. They really cleaned up some excess room reverb, improving clarity considerably.
With the 901's and good recordings, sound quality is very enjoyable. Images are typically "901-big" which I honestly find to be more realistic that the precise, but smaller images that directional speakers often produce; especially in smaller, more acoustically dead rooms. Bass is warm and prodigious, although the room is prone to standing waves. You've just gotta find the good wave and ride it for all it's worth, baby! Highs are OK, but a but curtailed. My hf hearing is not good, though. Suffice to say it's not the last word in air, but it's not bad. Mids are very neutral. The last pair of 901's I owned, Series IV's from the late 70's seemed to have a prominent, somewhat colored midrange to me, but these VI's are essentially flat-measuring and sound very good. I love the unfettered dynamics of the Bose 901's! If you push them to silly-loud levels, the bass quality will at some point begin to suffer, but I seldom approach that point. I would not be surprised if measured bass distortion was relatively high, but subjectively, it almost always sounds good. High levels of very low-frequency bass will expose the limits of the driver's linear excursion, though. There ain't no free lunch! But overall, in light oftheir tiny price and size, they are flat-out amazing. You just have to accept going in that they ain't studio monitors! ...and will not image or otherwise sound like studio monitors. Put it this way...if you prefer front-row center at live music events, the 901 ain't for you. But if you just love row 20...or 30, where you get a nice mix of room sound with the direct sound from the stage, the 901 could just make you very happy...at least, when set up correctly in the right room. (And imho, the "right" room for them is more smallish and dead, rather than largish and live.
I forget the name. I bought three of them when we built this house. Each one holds 1000 CD's and I'd say I've got room left for 500-plus.
I love good music! Live music is my reference and I always try to "calibrate" my expectations of what a good audio reproduction system could or should do, by listening to good live sound, whether it's acoustic or electric.
DVD or LaserDisc Player
Marantz UD5005 universal Blu-ray
Sony from the early 90's
Satellite or Cable
Sony KDS60A3000. One of Sony's last, biggest and best rear projection sets, imho, of course.
for discs, CD, being my overwhelming medium of choice, I have a nice NAD C565BEE. It sounds great, but...it's transport is a little more noisey than I like...with some discs and usually then only at the beginning of playback.
I only listen to analog (LP) as a legacy medium. I haven't bought new vinyl since '84.
Oh I used to be Mr. black-box-boy back in the pre CD days. I had equalizers, dynamic range expanders, sonic hologram generators and impulse noise suppressors! But now, the only signal processor I use is my Bose 901 EQ. Although, with the advent of bric
Main AV rig receiver is a decent Marantz NR1602. Actually, my best receiver has been demoted to family room duty. It's a Pioneer Elite VSX55TXi from about...2003?
I love this pre! NAD C 165BEE. Built like a tank, full-featured (which I like) with tone controls, tape monitor (which I need for the Bose EQ) and multiple pre outs for bi-amping (if desired) or driving a sub line-level. While pure digital is tempting,
I lucked out here. When I decided to take my Bose 901's up in status from secondary, just4fun speakers, to primary stereo transducers, I first new I needed substantial, high quality power. this big boy fits the bill to a T. And the lucky part is, I fou
Stereo: Bose 901 Series VI. Bought new direct from Bose on-line in 2009. 5.1 a/d/s/ HT400LCR's
Velodyne DLS4000R's (2)
generic (Parts Express, RadioShack, Walmart)
what came in the box, plus some Radio Shack Golds, which I hate (they clamp so tightly on the jack that the mere act of putting them on or off has broken solder joints on some of my equipment over the years. I finally took needle-nose pliers and spread s
what came in the box
My oldest pair is my beloved Sennheiser HD580's. I think I bought them on '95. They have had new ear cushions twice and new headband foam once. They still sound great to me and are still in excellent shape. I will use them 'till they quit. I rece
Custom Woodwork And Design Oak cabinets from the 80's.
Yes. Each system is on a separate one. The AV is on a Panamax unit and the 2-channel is on...I forget. (They're both out of sight and out of mind behind the cabinets.
Tuning and Tweaks
not so much
TEAC CD-RW890 CD recorder Technics SL-BD20D inexpensive belt-drive semi-auto with a cheap Technics-branded P-mount cartridge that came with it. Probably an Audio-Technica. Akai HX-A3X cassette deck from 1987. Still works well, but see's little use as it has outlasted the tapes! Sony SLV779HF VHS VCR A little loose in the joints but still working when called upon. Bought new in about 1992 or so. Panasonic DMR-E30 DVD recorder. Works great and is still being used to archive VHS and 8mm home movies onto DVD-R....which may not be an archival medium, but it will hopefully get me to hdd or whatever is next.
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