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UK loan programme

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discrete badger View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote discrete badger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Oct 2011 at 7:27am
Thanks Fatmangolf and Graham.

I didn't notice this effect with my original voyager, no. But then that was burnt in gradually with the battery over listening periods whereas for VSE because of the timescales I've left it plugged into the mains permanently. But as a fair test I've been doing the listening using the battery.

I did mention it yesterday, but to re-iterate to any passing readers - the production, burnt-in voyager sounds marvellous, and always has. VSE is a test unit and I'm happy to have the opportunity to try it.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote discrete badger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 2011 at 10:37pm
VSE has apparently "settled" somewhat, and is once again comfortable to listen to. I listened to some jazz (Yellowjackets "Like a River"), some solo piano (Andreas Woyke "Braiding Bach") - and some large scale orchestral (Jongen "Symphonie Concertante" on Telarc, Bantock "Celtic and Hebridean Symphonies" on Hyperion). These recordings are all extremely good in their own way whilst being musically interesting - good test material as the "drawing-in" factor can be assessed!
 
I can still hear some of the 3-channel effect and the brightness is much reduced (but still evident). But more subtle changes have happened - notably, the stereo image now sounds much narrower, whereas originally it was comparable to the production Voyager. 

I spent some time trying to hear what was causing this until I stumbled on a segment of a highly-produced track which shows the effect precisely. The last 30 seconds of "Indefinite leave to remain" on Fundamental, the 2006 Pet Shop Boys album, contain a very rich layered string texture (sample + acoustic), which contains individual voices panned hard left and right. Through V, the effect is a deliciously wide and almost holographic image. Through VSE at the moment, there is no such effect - the hard-panned details are still recognisably at the left and right limits, but at that position they sound mono, if that makes any sense? 

I will keep VSE plugged in to see how it changes over the next few days.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Graham Slee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Oct 2011 at 9:07am
DB, you're being very helpful.

Conventional cross-feed (Jan Meier cross feed, that is, as applied to this beta test) applies some mixing between left and right channels such that there isn't much separation at sub 300Hz frequencies (lower mids and bass), and at higher frequencies there is more separation. The problem being that this "more separation" at high frequencies isn't sufficiently more, and cannot be because of the way it's implemented.

I can explain it better as left-right mixing and the better technical name for that is positive crosstalk.

What I think is needed is a little more positive crosstalk at low frequencies making the bass omni-directional (or near-mono) as it is in real life, then reducing the positive crosstalk at a -6dB/octave rate to a frequency where there is no mixing at all, possibly also applying negative crosstalk to emphasize the high frequency spatial information by pulling it further apart. This is roughly the way 2-channel stereo speakers present the information. The existing cross-feed ideas don't go to such extremes.

In implementing the cross-feed in the Voyager "SE" some of the slew rate limiting at the input was compromised and I am pretty much sure this has led to the brightness (ringing), and there's nothing worse to upset the stereo image. It starts to sound quite "dry".

No matter, it was worth having a go and worth pursuing further when I can find the odd spare hour.


Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fatmangolf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Oct 2011 at 8:32am
Hi FritzS, there is an EU loan programme on this thread:
 
 
I had a quick look at your website and saw lots on interesting information and reviews you have written. Thank you.
 
 


Edited by Fatmangolf - 28 Oct 2011 at 8:34am
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote discrete badger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Oct 2011 at 8:36pm
Listening over the last few days has suggested that VSE's character has changed very little since the last posting. I listened to some renaissance opera (Monteverdi l'Orfeo on L'Oiseau-Lyre), some sonically spectacular remixes of Jean Michel-Jarre's Oxygene 8, and some of the indescribably wonderful Tallis motets (Winchester cathedral choir on Hyperion). Then the Petri/Jarrett recording of Bach flute sonatas on RCA Victor, and extracts from some Wagnerian opera (The Karajan Parsifal on DG)

Noticeable throughout was the smaller stereo image mentioned previously. The Tallis recording is quite "forward" in the lower treble and on the VSE this led to more than a trace of "sheen" in this area, whereas on the V the effect was the more desirable one of crystalline clarity. The "Sunday Club" and "Dados ethnic" remixes of the Jarre make an unusually extensive use of stereo possibilities and contain a lot of repeated synth chords which move around the stereo image constantly. They seemed to make more sense on the V in that they seemed to be moving along well-defined paths. 

The Bach recording presents two delicate acoustic instruments, each with a very extensive series of harmonic overtones, in a very open and revealing recording. Jarrett's harpsichord is miked in stereo, and Petri's recorder is at stage centre. Through VSE, predictably the harpsichord sounded smaller but more interestingly the recorder positioning seemed less stable over ascending and descending scales. The effect is a little distracting.

The 1981 Parsifal is a luminously beautiful recording of the Berlin Phil with natural-sounding balance relative to the vocals. To my ears the VSE effect was to flatten the stereo image and make the singers (particularly the bass) sound slightly artificial.

I am surprised that my first very positive impression of the VSE has proved elusive over time. I don't know whether this was more an accident of burn-in, or an initial "something is different" novelty that turned into a less listenable experience over time. Either way, it shows just how beneficial this kind of loan scheme can be. I think I have heard enough to conclude that I have a significant preference for the crossfeed-less V, at least with this evolution. The VSE, even as it stands, is a good-sounding amp. It's just that the V is a pretty tough act to follow.

Thanks to Graham and Fatmangolf for setting up this excellent loan scheme.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fatmangolf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Oct 2011 at 8:13pm
The thanks should go to Graham for his commitment to supporting the loan scheme for forum members. I am glad to help out so we can all benefit from it in the UK.
 
There are several units out on loan with members at the moment so please PM me if you are interested in a home trial of any of the GSP Audio gear.
 
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote discrete badger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Nov 2011 at 7:21pm
Next at DB towers is - delight of delights! - the Solo Ultra Linear.

Somewhat wary of first impressions after the VSE experience, but right now - and still cold - it seems that this is an extraordinary little box. I haven't heard SRG so have only the Novo and Voyager as benchmarks, although Dr. Lavry's headamp in the DA11 (digital inputs only of course) is rumoured to be no slouch. 

The stereo image driving the HD250's is enormous - where have the surround speakers been hidden? It sounds like you can swim in it! Bass is massive whilst precise - it seems like the amp is in total control which makes for great transparency and listenability. The treble has the "house" openness but there's just more of it - in fact there's just more of everything!

This promises to be a very interesting couple of weeks!
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