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It Started With Isoacoustic Gaia’s and Quickly Got Out Of Hand


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A couple of weeks ago, I installed a set of Isoacoustic Gaia II’s on my Katalyst Akubariks, after hearing what they did to my friend’s new PMC Fact8 Signature speakers.

With my Akubariks, the Gaia’s improvements were astonishing, with significant gains in sound quality. What surprised me the most was that as the Gaia’s settled in with the weight of the Akubariks on top of them, the sound quality continued to improve, over the next 12 hours. In fact, my Akubariks have taken on a whole new persona, transformed to a new sound signature that I had not experienced before from my Akubariks. It would be an understatement to say that I was staggered at the wonderful  transformation.

‘Earlier this year, I visited one of my Linn dealers, and purchased a set of 4 Isoacoustic Orea Bronze pucks, which were placed under  my Akurate Hub, with great results. Then about a month ago, I picked up a pair of Isoacoustic Apertas, to place under my Akurate 225 Centre Channel speaker. Again an unimaginable improvement in sound quality. I have been extremely pleased with my new purchases and thought about the next steps.

I recently found out that Isoacoustics also sell a professional line of audio products aimed at musicians, not targeted for audiophiles. They are more reasonably priced than their audiophile cousins. These are isolating devices meant to be placed under guitar amps, speakers , studio monitors, and electronics. It turns out my favourite music instrument store sells  these Isoacoustic products, including ISO Pucks, ISO Pucks Minis and Stage 1 Platforms. All of these products were on sale for Black Friday Week, so I purchased some.

The fun began when I got home, to decide what to do with my new ISO Pucks, 1 set of 8 ISO Puck Mini’s, and a Stage 1 platform, that would normally be placed under a guitar amp. I laid them all out on the coffee table and decided where to place them.  I removed the Aperta’s under my Akurate 225  Centre Channel speaker and put the Stage 1 platform in its place. The Aperta’s now sit under my Akurate Exaktbox I behind my sofa,  which powers my rear speakers. 

‘I placed 4 ISO Pucks under my Shunyata Denali power conditioner, and another set of 4 ISO Pucks under my Akurate Exaktbox 6.

I still had 8 individual ISO Puck Mini’s to place. The first set of 4 placed under my QNAP NAS, and the next set of 4 find a home under my Environmental Potentials 2460 wave form correction device.

The improvements in sound quality to my HiFi system was immediately apparent, but the real surprise was hearing the transformation  in sound quality in real time, with each album, as the weight of the electronics settled into place on top of the pucks. The improvements continued over the afternoon and evening, and were a similar level to the improvements I heard with the Gaia’s. The combination of the ISO Pucks and the Gaia’s was extraordinary. 

The music store had another 2 boxes of 8 Isoacoustic ISO Puck Mini’s in stock, at the Black Friday price, which l quickly purchased yesterday.

Today, I open the 2 boxes of 16 pucks, placed them on the coffee table, wondering where to place them. One set of 4 went under the Akurate 4200 amp that powers my centre channel speaker. Another set of 4 went under the OPPO BluRay player, in combination with my Still Point mini’s. 

8 more pucks to go. 4 are placed under my network switch, and the last 4 under my HD box for my TV.

‘Time to sit back and play some 5.1 music. It does not disappoint. There is a sensational new balance to my surround system, with new found boogey factor. The bass is deep, musical and detailed. Listening in an adjacent room and out in the building hallway, virtually no extraneous bass bloom. The mids and highs are extremely detailed, with well separated instruments, voices carry unprecedented emotional connection . The overall balance and realism is fantastic.

In my system, I can say that the ISO Pucks, Stage 1 Platform, Apertas, and Oreas have brought as much improvements to my system as the Gaia II’s, and then some.

‘Here are some photos

Photo 1 is the Akurate 225 speaker on the Stage 1 Platform 

‘Photo 2 is the Akurate Hub on the Orea pucks

Photo 3 is the Akurate Exaktbox 6 on the ISO Pucks.

Photo 4 is the Shunyata Denali on the ISO Pucks (top part of picture, and the Environmental Potentials 2460 on top of the ISO Puck Mini’s

Photo 5 is my QNAP NAS on a set of ISO Puck Mini’s.

99F5EA8D-B4B0-4A91-B375-02887CAB491D.jpeg

72FDF95C-0452-4862-B12A-677A3C005590.jpeg

F0EC88E8-A838-4D24-A163-039235628A72.jpeg

5C4E7B0D-D42F-4E45-A7A3-E8AEA72C1562.jpeg

4DF935EE-300D-4876-AB97-8106F6D24D73.jpeg

Edited by Paulssurround
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When is saw your post, Nopiano, I tried to find it but found this instead https://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/isoacoustics-gaia-i-ii-and-iii-loudspeaker-isolation-feet It is a review o

My Gaia III’s arrived today and fitted to my Akudoriks this afternoon. First impressions are good. I always felt my suspended wooden floor added something unwanted to the overall sound in my room. I t

That's a pucking lot of new gear there Paul That Stage platform looks very familiar - like a latter day IsoPlat.  Eventually the subliminal message sank in...

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That's a pucking lot of new gear there Paul :)

That Stage platform looks very familiar - like a latter day IsoPlat.  Eventually the subliminal message sank in...

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Thats impressive, Paul:o B|

Did you already have the time to compare the orea pucks against the pucks-mini pucks?

Iso acoustics say that the orea brings a slighty improvement compare to the pucks but then it must be a steal at a fraction of the price of the orea, i think:) 

Bring the mini pucks the same soundquality as the pucks but are just a bit smaller?

Edited by Rudi64
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I hear that Ikea have cut their Gunstig production line as they are no longer Paul’s preferred isolating device!!

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3 hours ago, Rudi64 said:

Thats impressive, Paul:o B|

Did you already have the time to compare the orea pucks against the pucks-mini pucks?

Iso acoustics say that the orea brings a slighty improvement compare to the pucks but then it must be a steal at a fraction of the price of the orea, i think:) 

Bring the mini pucks the same soundquality as the pucks but are just a bit smaller?

Thanks Rudi,

I did not compare the ISO Pucks to the ISO Pucks Mini’s for sound quality differences. The biggest difference between them is the amount of weight that you can place on top of them. The ISO Pucks are rated for up to 20 pounds per puck, for a total of 80 pounds under a component or speaker, whereas the ISO Puck Mini’s are rated at 6 pounds per puck. So I decided to place the pucks depending on the weight of the components.

I spoke with Paul Morrison, Sales Director at Isoacoustic, and he said that the Oreas perform better than the ISO pucks, but there is a cost difference.

‘The ISO Pucks come in a box of 2 for $79 Cdn, were on sale for $69. The ISO Puck Mini’s come in a box of 8 for $149. Cdn, and were on sale for $100. Oreas are sold individually, and start at $55 each and go up to $95 each. The Stage 1 platform sells for $140 Cdn and was on sale for $100

I don’t think I can over emphasize the sound quality improvements these devices have brought to my HIFi, and the transformation they have provided.   😊

3 hours ago, Nopiano said:

I hear that Ikea have cut their Gunstig production line as they are no longer Paul’s preferred isolating device!!

Astute observation. 😀

If you look carefully at my photos, you may note I still have Gunstigs underneath the Aptitlig butcher blocks, and then the Isoacoustic products on top of the butcher blocks. However, I have retired many of my Gunstig’s.

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Bloody hell Paul, you've really jumped on the isolation feet bandwagon!

I can get it for speakers and turntables, but is there any proven benefit for solid state devices?

I'm going to stick my DSM on 1 of the platforms when my feet arrive (as they'll be spare and I have nothing else to do with them) but not sure I've seen any analysis or testing which shows how/why it would create an improvement - guessing something to do with movements in the circuitry will create small EMI interference, not too convinced that these would be material though.

anyone have any insight? 

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44 minutes ago, Phobic said:

Bloody hell Paul, you've really jumped on the isolation feet bandwagon!

I can get it for speakers and turntables, but is there any proven benefit for solid state devices?

I'm going to stick my DSM on 1 of the platforms when my feet arrive (as they'll be spare and I have nothing else to do with them) but not sure I've seen any analysis or testing which shows how/why it would create an improvement - guessing something to do with movements in the circuitry will create small EMI interference, not too convinced that these would be material though.

anyone have any insight? 

Yes, the isolation devices purchases have really got out of hand , but they are worth every penny, and then some.

‘I also had reservations about their ability to make any difference on solid state devices, until I tried a Silent Runnings platform that I borrowed from my Linn dealer several years ago. At $3000 per platform it was not feasible to purchase them.
 

Since trying the Silent Runnings platform, I have been on a quest to find alternatives to the Silent Runnings, that will get me a similar experience, but using more affordable devices. That started my journey trying out, felt, rubber, silicon, cork, butcher blocks and so on, which now includes Gunstigs from IKEA.

‘The Isoacoustic, Oreas, and ISO pucks far exceed the improvements I experienced with the Silent Runnings platform, by a wide margin, for a fraction of the price.

Linn incorporate isolation devices on the amplifier modules on Klimax 350’s, Akubariks and Akudoriks. ‘Naim incorporate isolation devices right on the circuit boards to mitigate vibrations.

Edited by Paulssurround
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I followed Paul’s lead and picked up a pack of 8 mini pucks. I placed them under the AEDSM and the ExaKtbox: the improvement was immediate. There is more detail, a quieter background, and a calm effortlessness to the music. I added more last night to the Shunyata Denali and those qualities improved even more. I placed them under the Oppo headphone amp, but have yet to test it. I have two more packs on the way for the three amps and the Sonos Port. Will provide a detailed report when all is in place. Fortunately, these are on 35% discount now, so it is a reasonable purchase for a reasonable price👍🙏🎵🎶🎶🎻

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41 minutes ago, Eldarboy said:

I followed Paul’s lead and picked up a pack of 8 mini pucks. I placed them under the AEDSM and the ExaKtbox: the improvement was immediate. There is more detail, a quieter background, and a calm effortlessness to the music. I added more last night to the Shunyata Denali and those qualities improved even more. I placed them under the Oppo headphone amp, but have yet to test it. I have two more packs on the way for the three amps and the Sonos Port. Will provide a detailed report when all is in place. Fortunately, these are on 35% discount now, so it is a reasonable purchase for a reasonable price👍🙏🎵🎶🎶🎻

Great to hear that you are also experiencing significant improvements with your system with the ISO Pucks. 

I had a listening session last night and could not believe how my Linn system sounds now. Simply transformed to something I didn’t know was possible.  😀

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Damn, being a member of this forum is bad for the health of my wallet (but beneficial to my ears and feet). I have the Gaia III’s on order for my Akudoriks and have just ordered the Mini-pucks for my ADSM and 2250 based on @Paulssurround recommendation. Found them in the UK at a bargain of £69 instead of the usual £99. 

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17 minutes ago, Billz said:

Damn, being a member of this forum is bad for the health of my wallet (but beneficial to my ears and feet). I have the Gaia III’s on order for my Akudoriks and have just ordered the Mini-pucks for my ADSM and 2250 based on @Paulssurround recommendation. Found them in the UK at a bargain of £69 instead of the usual £99. 

Sorry about your wallet, but happy for your ears  

‘I think you are going to be very happy with the new Gaia’s and the ISO Puck Mini’s. Truly superb.

Do you mind sharing where you bought the ISO Puck Mini’s in the UK, please?   

Edited by Paulssurround
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40 minutes ago, Billz said:

Damn, being a member of this forum is bad for the health of my wallet (but beneficial to my ears and feet). I have the Gaia III’s on order for my Akudoriks and have just ordered the Mini-pucks for my ADSM and 2250 based on @Paulssurround recommendation. Found them in the UK at a bargain of £69 instead of the usual £99. 

Agreed...bad for the Wallet. I picked up a Black Friday deal. Gaia 3 arrived here too today and I will install them tomorrow and try them out on my Triton Two’s. 

At the same time I wonder if the Orea’s will work for the ADSM or A2200. It’s hard to believe, because they have no moving parts like a cdp, but....

I remember a demonstration whereby a dealer was putting a strange puck on top of an amp and the sound transformed in a positive way. 
 

Well, I will let you know soon if the Gaia’s work!

Edited by Oscar P.
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10 hours ago, Oscar P. said:

Agreed...bad for the Wallet. I picked up a Black Friday deal. Gaia 3 arrived here too today and I will install them tomorrow and try them out on my Triton Two’s. 

At the same time I wonder if the Orea’s will work for the ADSM or A2200. It’s hard to believe, because they have no moving parts like a cdp, but....

I remember a demonstration whereby a dealer was putting a strange puck on top of an amp and the sound transformed in a positive way. 
 

Well, I will let you know soon if the Gaia’s work!

Under the dac was the biggest improvment for me 🙂

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5 hours ago, CaptenBonScott said:

Under the dac was the biggest improvment for me 🙂

Maybe feet should be the next Linn upgrade, rather than a 1dB quieter DAC?! 

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On 02/12/2020 at 08:31, Paulssurround said:

A couple of weeks ago, I installed a set of Isoacoustic Gaia II’s on my Katalyst Akubariks, after hearing what they did to my friend’s new PMC Fact8 Signature speakers.

With my Akubariks, the Gaia’s improvements were astonishing, with significant gains in sound quality. What surprised me the most was that as the Gaia’s settled in with the weight of the Akubariks on top of them, the sound quality continued to improve, over the next 12 hours. In fact, my Akubariks have taken on a whole new persona, transformed to a new sound signature that I had not experienced before from my Akubariks. It would be an understatement to say that I was staggered at the wonderful  transformation.

‘Earlier this year, I visited one of my Linn dealers, and purchased a set of 4 Isoacoustic Orea Bronze pucks, which were placed under  my Akurate Hub, with great results. Then about a month ago, I picked up a pair of Isoacoustic Apertas, to place under my Akurate 225 Centre Channel speaker. Again an unimaginable improvement in sound quality. I have been extremely pleased with my new purchases and thought about the next steps.

I recently found out that Isoacoustics also sell a professional line of audio products aimed at musicians, not targeted for audiophiles. They are more reasonably priced than their audiophile cousins. These are isolating devices meant to be placed under guitar amps, speakers , studio monitors, and electronics. It turns out my favourite music instrument store sells  these Isoacoustic products, including ISO Pucks, ISO Pucks Minis and Stage 1 Platforms. All of these products were on sale for Black Friday Week, so I purchased some.

The fun began when I got home, to decide what to do with my new ISO Pucks, 1 set of 8 ISO Puck Mini’s, and a Stage 1 platform, that would normally be placed under a guitar amp. I laid them all out on the coffee table and decided where to place them.  I removed the Aperta’s under my Akurate 225  Centre Channel speaker and put the Stage 1 platform in its place. The Aperta’s now sit under my Akurate Exaktbox I behind my sofa,  which powers my rear speakers. 

‘I placed 4 ISO Pucks under my Shunyata Denali power conditioner, and another set of 4 ISO Pucks under my Akurate Exaktbox 6.

I still had 8 individual ISO Puck Mini’s to place. The first set of 4 placed under my QNAP NAS, and the next set of 4 find a home under my Environmental Potentials 2460 wave form correction device.

The improvements in sound quality to my HiFi system was immediately apparent, but the real surprise was hearing the transformation  in sound quality in real time, with each album, as the weight of the electronics settled into place on top of the pucks. The improvements continued over the afternoon and evening, and were a similar level to the improvements I heard with the Gaia’s. The combination of the ISO Pucks and the Gaia’s was extraordinary. 

The music store had another 2 boxes of 8 Isoacoustic ISO Puck Mini’s in stock, at the Black Friday price, which l quickly purchased yesterday.

Today, I open the 2 boxes of 16 pucks, placed them on the coffee table, wondering where to place them. One set of 4 went under the Akurate 4200 amp that powers my centre channel speaker. Another set of 4 went under the OPPO BluRay player, in combination with my Still Point mini’s. 

8 more pucks to go. 4 are placed under my network switch, and the last 4 under my HD box for my TV.

‘Time to sit back and play some 5.1 music. It does not disappoint. There is a sensational new balance to my surround system, with new found boogey factor. The bass is deep, musical and detailed. Listening in an adjacent room and out in the building hallway, virtually no extraneous bass bloom. The mids and highs are extremely detailed, with well separated instruments, voices carry unprecedented emotional connection . The overall balance and realism is fantastic.

In my system, I can say that the ISO Pucks, Stage 1 Platform, Apertas, and Oreas have brought as much improvements to my system as the Gaia II’s, and then some.

‘Here are some photos

Photo 1 is the Akurate 225 speaker on the Stage 1 Platform 

‘Photo 2 is the Akurate Hub on the Orea pucks

Photo 3 is the Akurate Exaktbox 6 on the ISO Pucks.

Photo 4 is the Shunyata Denali on the ISO Pucks (top part of picture, and the Environmental Potentials 2460 on top of the ISO Puck Mini’s

Photo 5 is my QNAP NAS on a set of ISO Puck Mini’s.

99F5EA8D-B4B0-4A91-B375-02887CAB491D.jpeg

72FDF95C-0452-4862-B12A-677A3C005590.jpeg

F0EC88E8-A838-4D24-A163-039235628A72.jpeg

5C4E7B0D-D42F-4E45-A7A3-E8AEA72C1562.jpeg

4DF935EE-300D-4876-AB97-8106F6D24D73.jpeg

Poul, you need a new rack !! .  Think about it, Isos and a new rack :) 

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