Setup Info and Accessories


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Power

The audio equipment has a separate 240VAC mains spur, run straight from the fuse box to behind the equipment rack (a distance of about 12m).  Conductors in the spur cable are 6mm2(~9AWG).

Two Furutech FP-15A-Cu AC duplex outlets are mounted into a fire and acoustic rated wall-box. At the wall socket an
Audience aR2p-TO, Teflon capped line power conditioner (240V version) is used. Two VH Audio Hotbox's with Furutech FI-11Cu male wall plug and FP-15Cu outlets are plugged into the aR2p-TO. 

Power cords are all DIY. Bob Crump's 'Asylum' recipe for the turntable/SDS,  Chris VH's DIY Flavor 2 design  on the pre/power amps and VH Audio Flavor 3 on the digital sources. The DIY F2/F3s can be used with many different connectors available from Chris' parts list. I chose the Furutech FI-11Ag IECs and the FI-11Cu male plugs.
All power cords have been made a similar length to help maintain a star earthing scheme.

It boggles the mind, but power cords and outlets seem to have a much greater effect on system sound quality than interconnects and speaker cables.  In fact I now consider power connections to be of fundamental importance (those who haven't experimented will be shaking their heads!). Prior to installing the VH Audio power cables and Hotboxes, I'd been using an API Power Wedge IIe line conditioner (high current filtered outlets and isolation transformers for low power gear) and the generic cords supplied with the equipment. I could scarcely believe the improvement that occurred when I substituted the Hotbox/Crump/VH Audio cords. Every aspect of the sound improved: soundstage height/width/depth, transparency, transient definition, focus, bass power, dynamics, detail - the sound became more open, vivid and robustly realistic.  I'm talking BIG improvements here, of the kind associated with a major component upgrade - I'm not going to speculate as to why/how.


VH Audio Hotbox - photo linked from VH Audio
(Chris's photo is much nicer than my crappy camera skills can produce.....but picture NOT showing the Furutech plug/outlets - see above)
 

 

Speaker positioning and room

The room size had to fit basic design constraints - odd shapes would be difficult to analyse and expensive, so basic rectangular construction was chosen. Dimensions are: 6m length, 4.3m width and 2.7m height. The dimensions of the room started by following Sepmeyer's  1 : 1.6 : 2.33 ratios and was slightly adjusted using basic (calculated) spectrum analysis of room modes.

The corners behind the speakers have DIY Bass traps built to Jon Risch's instructions. There are two DIY absorptive panels across the front corners on top of the bass traps. Some 100mm foam panels are mounted to the front wall each side of the window with some Vicoustic DC2 diffuser panels above them. Vicoustic Wavewood 1.2m panels are mounted vertically at the first reflection points of the speakers with some more 1.2m Wavewood panels mounted horizontally along the side walls. DC2 diffusers are mounted above the Wavewood panels and more of the DC2 panels on the rear wall above the record shelving.

Speakers are positioned with the front baffles postioned about 1.9m from the front wall and the centre of the front baffles about 900mm from the side walls. Speakers are placed as symmetrically as possible (measured and matched from walls). The listening position is 1.9m from the rear wall. This forms a nearfield listening triangle with the speakers spaced about 2.5m apart and 2.6m to the listening position (again measurements to the centre of the front baffle). Speakers are angled towards the central listening position.

Its amazing how focussed and precise the soundfield of a big baffled speaker like the SCM100 can be when set up in this manner. The superb clarity and neutrality of the  SCM100 is exploited and provides great insight into recordings, The music produced is compelling.


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