The Sennheiser HD 650 is an great headphone with a little bit of sonic ‘magic’ appeal. The attractively priced
MassDrop HD 6XX version is a special bargain.
A popular and nice match for the Sennheiser HD 650 / HD 6XX is a vacuum tube headphone amplifier.
The project here was built by Jeremy Young. It was inspired by the Bottlehead OTL headphone amp, but circuit ‘operating points’ were determined to suit a locally made power transformer.
Replacing the standard Decca 2-piece plastic mount with a ‘Decapod’ (solid aluminium) mount, is essential in my opinion and I recommend it.
The Decapod ‘mounting block’ is obviously a much more solid connection between the cartridge and the tonearm, than the original Decca design
And,, I can advise that the Decapod will transform the sound of your’standard’ London Decca or Decca cartridge.
American country singer and song-writer,
Jimmie Dale Gilmore, played in NZ in 2015 but this time (pre-pandemic on 1 March 2020), he brought Butch Hancock, fellow-member of legendary The Flatlanders trio.
As I was unlikely to visit USA again in the near future, I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to see Butch Hancock, another respected singer and song-writer.
Top class, these guys from West Texas are the real deal.
One of the most enjoyable Americana-country concerts I’ve attended. Outstanding.
This vintage Japanese tonearm still enjoys a certain ‘cult’ status.
Fidelity Research Co. was founded by Isamu Ikeda in 1964 and the FR-64 tonearm was introduced in 1978. Fidelity Research closed down c.1984.
(A new company, Ikeda Sound Labs, currently again offers new cartridge & tonearm products.)
The detailing and machine-finishing is visually uncomplicated. After 40 years, it still looks elegant and the material is durable and un-tarnished.
Some of the appealing things about Output Transformer coupling are :
In a line-preamp, only 1 tube stage is required – simplicity / transparency.
No second stage ‘cathode-follower’ output is required.
No DC-blocking, output coupling capacitor is required – less colouration.
Much better circuit ‘efficiency’ – much lower energy loss in the tube plate circuit (compared with resistor plate loading).
Thus, a smaller, more efficient PSU is possible.
(See previous post –
WOT tube line-stage redux.)
My first visit to the Royal Concertgebouw concert hall in Amsterdam on 21 May 2019.
The acclaimed pianist Yuja Wang performed with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Lithuanian conductor Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla.
The programme was:
M. Weinberg – Rhapsody on Moldavian Themes, op. 47/1
Prokofjev – Piano Concerto No. 5, op. 55
Prokofjev – Vivo from Piano Concerto No. 5, op. 55 (encore)
Stravinsky – Firebird
Marc Czerwinski has a nice music system in the attic space of his home in England.
The room is a 5.5m wide x 14.5m long x 2.75m high loft-attic, with 1.2m high side walls.
The loudspeakers are 2.45m spaced apart and the listening position is 4.6m away.
With Marc’s kind permission, here are some pics of his highly-tuned music system and equipment, including:
What we have learnt so far, with this SP-10 MkII turntable…
Building the ‘plinth’
(see TECHNICS SP-10MkII turntable – Pt 3) and trying to obtain the best sound from this turntable has taught us a number of things.
And also about optimising Direct-Drive turntables in general.
This journey is on-going, but I feel that we can say the following:
After the previous first audition, I have high hopes for this Direct Drive turntable.
The sound was punchy, with good mid-range ‘presence’ and reasonably good treble quality (using an elliptical stylus cartridge).
But before we can listen seriously,, we need to fix the adjustable helicoid arm-height base, which has become difficult to rotate after so many years.
This will allow us to raise & lower the tonearm to correctly to optimise VTA
It’s been almost 40 years, and I had forgotten how beautiful is Paris in the spring-time.
In fine spring weather, few cities are as attractive and enjoyable to be in.
The consistency of architectural scale in the city. Few modern cities in the world have controlled the height of their buildings, like Paris.
Additionally, the visual consistency of the ‘Paris limestone’ used for building construction over the centuries.