Richard A

So which upgrade made the biggest difference?

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Super Wammer

I very much enjoyed the recent thread on upgrades that weren't. Let's look at the opposite angle. Which upgrade made the biggest or most surprising difference to your system?

For me it was buying Pockets' Puresound L10 pre-amplifier. For the first time I could understand what Hi Fi reviewers were on about when they spoke about rythmn in a system. I've since added a new power amplifier - the Bel Canto Ref 150s and this improved things but not in such a dramatic fashion.

Richard A

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When i stopped drinking New world reds and went back to French , Spanish and Italian . So much better made me more relaxed and i enjoyed the system and music so much better .:D On a serious note finding out i love Class A 

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For me, it goes back to about 1969, and then 1972. In 1969, I built a pair of large loudspeakers using  Goodmans TwinAxiom 10 drivers. These were nominally full-range drivers with a single cone plus whizzer. Compared with my previous loudspeakers, which were essentially ex-television 7-5 ellipticals in a box, they were a huge improvement. Then later, in 1972 when I changed those for a pair of three-way Heco P4000s. They didn't have the bass extension of the Goodmans, but were hugely cleaner in the midrange and top.

Then again in about  1975 when I changed the Hecos for a pair of IMF TLS50s. Got the bass extension I'd been missing, plus the mid-range and top clarity from before.

After the TLS50s, only ever had incremental improvements or, more likely, just changes.

In other words, all my "upgrades that made the biggest difference" have been on loudspeakers.

Oh, my first CD player (marantz CD63 - the original top loader)  made the biggest single improvement in source components.

S.

Edited by SergeAuckland
Corrected typo
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Buying compatible cables made a seismic upgrade to my system

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Discovering olde fashioned SETs which sounded less like a dry facsimile of music and more like real people playing real music. Of course , I have wandered off the path many times but for music I always return to SETs.

Oh and aligning carpet grippers...

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Upgrading from passives to active was the largest improvement ive heard in my system. Even the wife could appreciate the sound!

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18 minutes ago, Duvet said:

 On a serious note finding out i love Class A 

Yes.  NAD 3020 to MF A1 back in the day.  Was it true class A?  No matter, and I'm still stuck on that class A feeling.

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Most surprising and cost effective difference was when I bought a second-hand record cleaning machine (Clearaudio Smart Matrix) - not only did it clean up the clicks and surface noice on my old records which was most welcome, but it lowered the noise floor and effectively lifted a veil from the sound which I really hadn't expected.

Otherwise, upgrading my old Pink Triangle LPT to a Voyd made a big difference, as did the New Audio Frontiers KT66 Legend. Vocals now have a much more realistic presence that they didn't have previously.

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Moving from Epos M5 to Proac Studio 150 and then going back to the 150's after swapping them out for a while with some Studio 110's. Even Mrs BB, who has no interest in Hi-Fi, said we had a lucky escape when the other party decided not to make the swap for the 110's for the 150's permanent.

Cheers BB 

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moving from mid range MM or HOMC carts to halfway decent LO MC.

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10 minutes ago, freefallrob said:

Going Direct Drive.

That has certainly made my life a lot easier, both in avoiding the slow start-up of belt drives and wobbly suspended turntables,  such that I would never go back to a bouncy-bouncy turntable or a belt drive.  Can't say it's made any difference to the sound though.

S.

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41 minutes ago, SergeAuckland said:

...

In other words, all my "upgrades that made the biggest difference" have been on loudspeakers....

S.

 

+1

My first decent speakers were Wharfedale Dovedales, a vast improvement on what I had previously. The next vast improvement were my Usher Mini Dancer 2's* over the previous Monitor Audio GR60's. I can't see me spending magabucks to make any significant improvement on the Ushers.

.

.

.

*still think they have a stupid name 9_9

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5 minutes ago, SergeAuckland said:

That has certainly made my life a lot easier, both in avoiding the slow start-up of belt drives and wobbly suspended turntables,  such that I would never go back to a bouncy-bouncy turntable or a belt drive.  Can't say it's made any difference to the sound though.

S.

So visually reassuring :whistle:

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