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I have lived with my new Next Generation Klimax DSM for four days now and thought I would share my reactions here. First, I acknowledge that equipment at this price level severely limits its availability for most music lovers (and how lucky I am to be able to have one) but for most of my life I have sought information on the best that is available, even if not accessible to me. So I share.

 

My long and variable upgrading path, beginning in my penny-pinching days with cobbled-together cast-off units, to what I consider now my ultimate system, has one consistent theme: the better the system, the wider my musical taste developed. Obvious when you think about it. If a soprano’s top notes reproduce as screeching, and piano notes clang rather than ring, pretty soon your listening narrows to top-line melody and boom-measuring time signatures.

 

Others have posted their responses to the NGKDSM, with detailed descriptions better than I am able to, and my reactions echo theirs. I am pleased (thanks to Chris’ Hidden Systems) to have lived for a few weeks with the previous Klimax DSM (a wonderful product in its own right) but it’s in what the former does that the latter doesn’t that the magic lies. It is truly amazing.

 

Here’s the difference it has made to my music-listening. On every genre of music that I have used to “put it through its paces”, as the Dutch reviewer posted earlier, the music smothers the attempt to analyse reproduction. It’s like to a much greater degree, each contributing element, be it individual instruments in the orchestra, individuals in a choir, or backing vocalists and the muted contribution of a distant steel guitar, they all demand attention, become spot-lighted, enhancing, demanding, a fuller appreciation of the effect of the music as a whole.

 

A couple of examples. I like Mahler’s symphonies, but there are parts of some of the later ones where the “heaviness” detracts and attention wanders. Not any more. Now a whole Joan Armatrading album delights; I’m not just picking out favourites. I hope this makes the point.

 

And in passing, my title chosen for this post has reminded me of something I have thought about sharing for a while. A few years ago I watched a series of 50-minute lectures on You Tube by Craig Wright, head of music at Yale University called Listening to Music. He is a master communicator of music, using popular music to illustrate aspects of classical music, and vice-versa. By the end of this fascinating course my knowledge of all aspects of music had expanded massively. I defy anyone to follow this course and not end up really appreciating all music better, not just one’s existing favourites.

 

What times we live in that give us such access to music!

 

Vic.

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@vicjayl that’s a great write up.

I’ve had my new hub for less than two weeks now and have struggled with how to summarise what it brings. So far, I haven’t got past “Simply Better” to coin an old Linn marketing phrase.

I just wish I could spend more time listening to it - it’s been a busy couple of weeks.

’troll

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The lectures are queued up and ready to go, all 23 of them!

Thank you for posting your thoughts and your experience. It does echo my experience when the LP12 made it to Klimax level. I'm hoping for something similar on the DS side with the KSH.

It's so refreshing to read a hifi component review (a real review, not a nonsense one you find in magazines) that focuses on the music.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 21/08/2021 at 02:29, vicjayl said:

the better the system, the wider my musical taste developed.

This to me, has got to be one of the primary joys of owning a Linn system, or source component for that matter. There are precious few other sources which I've heard that even begin to come close to communicating the music so effortlessly that you'll enjoy listening to content you never thought you would enjoy. It also ignites a curiosity to explore, both entirely new artists and presentations as well as the old stand-bys you've listened to for many years. I thought I knew a lot about music when I was first introduced to Linn, time has proven I have merely scratched the surface and there is so much more to discover and rediscover.

And I echo 'trolls and akamatsu's sentiment - refreshing to read a real review that's straightforward and to the point.

Quote

What times we live in that give us such access to music!

Yes, and quite frankly it becomes mind-boggling. The sheer amount of music released during the 1970's is absolutely amazing, and now with things like Bandcamp, Soundcloud, etc. the amount of people creating their own music has increased exponentially. Of course, one must wade through some of the crap to find the gems, as there is no shortage of bad music out there; I think owning a Linn HiFi helps one appreciate the excellent things regardless of genre and facilitates the weeding out of the garbage.

Hoping to someday own a NGKDSM myself, though that is likely not going to be anytime soon, so it's great to hear your experience.

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On 21/08/2021 at 10:29, vicjayl said:

 

And in passing, my title chosen for this post has reminded me of something I have thought about sharing for a while. A few years ago I watched a series of 50-minute lectures on You Tube by Craig Wright, head of music at Yale University called Listening to Music. He is a master communicator of music, using popular music to illustrate aspects of classical music, and vice-versa. By the end of this fascinating course my knowledge of all aspects of music had expanded massively. I defy anyone to follow this course and not end up really appreciating all music better, not just one’s existing favourites.

 

 

Since posting the above I have started to follow this course again and have just watched Lecture 8: Bass Patterns: Blues and Rock.  A couple of thoughts occur.  First, what a great education Yale offers if this beginners' course is representative; and seeing some students wandering in to lectures up to 15 minutes late (in a 50-minute lecture!) grates on this former teacher - but I guess if you're paying the fees these students (parents') pay, I suppose no one is going to pull you up on it.  The arrogance of privilege, eh?

But my point: I'm left humming chord progressions to pieces of music I thought I knew well, adding a whole new dimension to my listening.  (And now I know what chord progressions are!)   Once they are pointed out, with examples in Mozart, Beethoven, The Beach Boys and Gene Chandler (Duke of Earl) - using the same chord progressions! - once illustrated, your brain wants to pick them out in everything.  I had forgotten what wonderful stuff (and wonderful music) these lectures contain and how much my listening has been rewarded and enhanced.     

Vic.

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6 hours ago, vicjayl said:

Since posting the above I have started to follow this course again and have just watched Lecture 8: Bass Patterns: Blues and Rock.  A couple of thoughts occur.  First, what a great education Yale offers if this beginners' course is representative; and seeing some students wandering in to lectures up to 15 minutes late (in a 50-minute lecture!) grates on this former teacher - but I guess if you're paying the fees these students (parents') pay, I suppose no one is going to pull you up on it.  The arrogance of privilege, eh?

But my point: I'm left humming chord progressions to pieces of music I thought I knew well, adding a whole new dimension to my listening.  (And now I know what chord progressions are!)   Once they are pointed out, with examples in Mozart, Beethoven, The Beach Boys and Gene Chandler (Duke of Earl) - using the same chord progressions! - once illustrated, your brain wants to pick them out in everything.  I had forgotten what wonderful stuff (and wonderful music) these lectures contain and how much my listening has been rewarded and enhanced.     

Vic.

I think you are really on to something here. Ever since my experience with the Majik DSM, I've been looking at the human hifi component. That is, how does our perception influence the sound of hifi systems? I haven't much to say about it yet, but it certainly is fascinating.

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@vicjayl Thanks for the tip about Craig Wright. I'm following his nicely detailed YouTube series now. 

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