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In the Last Twenty Years

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  • In the Last Twenty Years

    Which component in the audio system has improved the most and why?
    17
    Speakers
    5.88%
    1
    Amplifiers
    5.88%
    1
    Preamplifiers
    0%
    0
    Phonostages
    11.76%
    2
    Turntables
    11.76%
    2
    Tonearms
    5.88%
    1
    Cartridges
    5.88%
    1
    DACs
    52.94%
    9
    Transports
    0%
    0
    Internconnects
    0%
    0
    Speaker cables
    0%
    0
    Power cords
    0%
    0
    Phono cables
    0%
    0
    Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
    Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
    ________________________________________

    -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
    -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
    -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
    -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
    -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
    -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
    -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
    -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
    -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
    -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

  • #2
    I gotta go with phono stages, specifically tube ones. Mostly in the noise department and not across the board, still many noisy units exist and some with a ridiculous no. of tubes. Looking back I miss my CJ Premiere 7, it had a beautiful, rich golden sound that the new ones just don't have...

    david
    Manufacturer: American Sound Turntables and The Nothing Rack
    Distribution: NEODIO

    Special Sales: van den Hul
    Industry Representation: Lamm, Kharma OLS Speakers, Ortofon, ZYX, Keith Monks, Audio Desk, Jensen Transformer, Venta Airwasher

    Unique Items: Vintage Horn Speakers
    http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...stening-room-1
    http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...earfield-setup

    Comment


    • #3
      Everything has improved but in my mind loudspeakers of every type esp direct radiating moving coil speakers the most. There was a paradigm shift about the time DRA Labs introduced MLSSA into the world (late '80s), once that happened the weekend tinkerer finally had an affordable and very advanced design tool/protocols previously available only to giants like KEF B&W, et al. Established cos. benefited because they could now analyze aspects of speaker design they only dreamed of without owning an anechoic chamber and dedicated FFT equipment.
      Simon Yorke S10 | My Sonic Lab Eminent GL | AcousticPlan PhonoMaster | Wadia X32 | Innuous ZEN Mini Mk II | Valvet Soulshine2 | Linear Tube Audio ZOTL10 MkII | Avantgarde Uno Fino XD

      "One of the great challenges of this world: Knowing enough about a subject to think you are right, but not enough about the subject to know you're wrong" - Neil deGrasse Tyson

      Comment


      • #4
        DACs, mostly because they were in their infancy 20 years ago. A decent $300 DAC today is superior to most of the most expensive DACs from back then.

        Some aspects of speakers (mostly detail retrieval) is far superior today, but many good speakers from 20 years are still good today. Same with turntables. Improvements in some areas, but nothing as drastic as with the digital end of things. There was just much more room for improvement.
        Steve Lefkowicz
        Senior Associate Editor at Positive Feedback
        -
        Analog: Linn LP12 (MOSE/Hercules II), Ittok, Dynavector 19a, iPhono2; Pro-Ject RPM-1 Carbon, Sumiko Pearl, iFi iPhono.
        Digital: Samsung 300E5C notebook, JRiver Media Center 26, Tidal HiFi and Qobuz Studio), iFi iDAC2, iFi iUSB3, iPurifier2.
        Electronics: Burson Conductor Virtuoso, DIY switch-box with TKD 10K pot, Antique Sound Labs MG-SI15DT-S, Burson Timekeeper Virtuoso, Jolida JD1000P, B&K ST140.
        Speakers: Tekton Double Impact, Tekton Lore, Magneplaner .7, ELAC Debut2 B6.2, Debut F5 and Debut B6, Emotiva Airmotiv B1, Sound Dynamics 300ti.
        Interconnects: Morrow Audio MA1, Vermouth Audio Black Pearl, Nordost Solar Wind, Audioquest Evergreen
        Speaker cables: Morrow Audio SP4, Vermouth Audio Red Velvet, Nordost Solar Wind, Nordost Flatline, Audioquest Q2.
        Digital cables: Straightwire USB Link, Aural Symphonics Digital Standard xxv USB, Belkin PureAV.
        Accessories: Sound Organization turntable shelf, Mondo racks, Pangea Audio Vulcan racks, Pi Audio Group Über BUSS, Monster HTS2000 power conditioner, Sound Organization speaker stands, Pangea Audio speaker stands, Kinetronics anti-static brush, Pro-Ject VC-S record cleaner, Spin Clean record cleaner.
        Headphones: Schiit Valhalla amp, Meze Audio 99 Classic and 99 Neo, Beyerdynamic DT770Pro, 1More Triple Driver Over Ear, 1More MK801, 1More Triple Driver IEM

        http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...ounding-system

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Rob View Post
          Everything has improved but in my mind loudspeakers of every type esp direct radiating moving coil speakers the most. There was a paradigm shift about the time DRA Labs introduced MLSSA into the world (late '80s), once that happened the weekend tinkerer finally had an affordable and very advanced design tool/protocols previously available only to giants like KEF B&W, et al. Established cos. benefited because they could now analyze aspects of speaker design they only dreamed of without owning an anechoic chamber and dedicated FFT equipment.
          Rob,
          Like me you're living with a vintage design, why did you go with speakers?
          david
          Manufacturer: American Sound Turntables and The Nothing Rack
          Distribution: NEODIO

          Special Sales: van den Hul
          Industry Representation: Lamm, Kharma OLS Speakers, Ortofon, ZYX, Keith Monks, Audio Desk, Jensen Transformer, Venta Airwasher

          Unique Items: Vintage Horn Speakers
          http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...stening-room-1
          http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...earfield-setup

          Comment


          • #6
            Although I don't utilize digital in my main system, I would say DAC's have improved the most for the very same reasons that Steve cited. I don't believe any others have improved as dramatically.
            Dynavector DV20x2L MC cartridge - Genesis G7.1f speakers - Marantz Reference PM-KI-Pearl Int. Amp. - Oracle Audio Paris MkV turntable - Various Morrow & Valab/King cables

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by david k View Post
              I gotta go with phono stages, specifically tube ones. Mostly in the noise department and not across the board, still many noisy units exist and some with a ridiculous no. of tubes. Looking back I miss my CJ Premiere 7, it had a beautiful, rich golden sound that the new ones just don't have...

              david
              Me too. I didn't use SUT back then but I must have been crazy back then to put up with that noise and lack of gain. Plus today's phonostages are far more dynamic than those of yesteryear.

              The Premier 7 was a great preamp/phono and the company's first dual mono unit. I had the scaled down Evolution 20 at that time.
              Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
              Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
              ________________________________________

              -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
              -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
              -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
              -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
              -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
              -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
              -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
              -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
              -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
              -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MylesBAstor View Post

                Me too. I didn't use SUT back then but I must have been crazy back then to put up with that noise and lack of gain. Plus today's phonostages are far more dynamic than those of yesteryear.

                The Premier 7 was a great preamp/phono and the company's first dual mono unit. I had the scaled down Evolution 20 at that time.
                There's a learning curve for everything Myles, we were still green in the 80's & 90's plus a lot of misinformation floating around to add to the confusion. I lucked out when I fell in with some old timer Japanese audiophiles and later with Vladimir, otherwise I might be still chasing my next fix!

                david
                Last edited by david k; 04-09-2016, 09:48 AM.
                Manufacturer: American Sound Turntables and The Nothing Rack
                Distribution: NEODIO

                Special Sales: van den Hul
                Industry Representation: Lamm, Kharma OLS Speakers, Ortofon, ZYX, Keith Monks, Audio Desk, Jensen Transformer, Venta Airwasher

                Unique Items: Vintage Horn Speakers
                http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...stening-room-1
                http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...earfield-setup

                Comment


                • #9
                  Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
                  Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
                  ________________________________________

                  -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
                  -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
                  -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
                  -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
                  -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
                  -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
                  -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
                  -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
                  -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
                  -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    New loudspeakers. I continue to be impressed by the performance which was impressive out of the box and improved with break in. Not that my previous long time speakers were slouches in any particular aspect, but the new ones do everything better. In particular dynamics, the high efficiency allows for very good dynamic contrasts even at low listening levels, with the volume set to "stupid" there is no compression noticeable.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I would say the biggest leap forward is in the prices they have gone where no one has gone before.

                      Comment


                      • MylesBAstor
                        MylesBAstor commented
                        Editing a comment
                        I think you can take it to the bank that you could get a group of audiophiles to agree on that! OTOH, entry level gear hasn't been better ever and if you take the CPI into account, may actually find that prices have remained the same.

                    • #12
                      I would say the most dramatic improvements in the last twenty years is with Solid State in general. I can't think of a single 1996 solid state device that has not been bettered.

                      Comment


                      • #13
                        Originally posted by JackD201 View Post
                        I would say the most dramatic improvements in the last twenty years is with Solid State in general. I can't think of a single 1996 solid state device that has not been bettered.
                        Excellent point. How could I forget? Most ss electronics in the '80s was flat, dimensionless, grainy (let's talk boulder sized) and hard. The '90s was only slightly better with SS tending to sound washed out. And actually neither ss nor tubes were especially quiet.
                        Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
                        Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
                        ________________________________________

                        -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
                        -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
                        -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
                        -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
                        -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
                        -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
                        -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
                        -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
                        -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
                        -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

                        Comment


                        • #14
                          Originally posted by JackD201 View Post
                          I would say the most dramatic improvements in the last twenty years is with Solid State in general. I can't think of a single 1996 solid state device that has not been bettered.
                          Lamm M1.1 & M2.1! Yes there is a .2 version but its mostly a parts upgrade the original design basically remains the same. Incredibly that design is still at the top of the heap 20 years later .

                          david

                          Manufacturer: American Sound Turntables and The Nothing Rack
                          Distribution: NEODIO

                          Special Sales: van den Hul
                          Industry Representation: Lamm, Kharma OLS Speakers, Ortofon, ZYX, Keith Monks, Audio Desk, Jensen Transformer, Venta Airwasher

                          Unique Items: Vintage Horn Speakers
                          http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...stening-room-1
                          http://www.audionirvana.org/forum/ti...earfield-setup

                          Comment


                          • #15
                            Originally posted by JackD201 View Post
                            I would say the most dramatic improvements in the last twenty years is with Solid State in general. I can't think of a single 1996 solid state device that has not been bettered.
                            Oh I don't know if that is entirely the case-- I'd still take a pair of Levinson ML-1 Monos over most of today's offerings

                            Same with Phono Stages-- I've yet to hear any that emote as fine as the Mares Connoisseur or a Vendetta 2T

                            Merely my opinion

                            Soc

                            Comment

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