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gsrai

Musical Fidelity A1 Integrated - an unexpected return...

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SSM wrote:

Cable Monkey wrote:
SSM wrote:
No two person's ears are the same. I suggested that to Gobind as I'd read on another fora of ProAc punters throwing the kitchen sink amp-wise at Responses and ended up opting for the niftier bass response of a Sonus Faber.:cafe: It's all comparative.

Well context is everything. Still doesn't get away from the fact that bass is fine using the control of an 840A. Same room, same stands, different amps. You tell me what's changed?;-) Anyhow, we are talking around the edges of this whole issue. I will get to listen to G's setup in the next week. I know the way his mind works, if he has reservations then something is going to change. I would wager it will be easier to get speakers that compliment the amp, but the room is the biggest issue. They have to work in there too. The adventure continues!:P

I am just here to congratulate Gobind on his new amp courtesy of his notification.:cafe: Collate my brief sentences on ProAc and if your brain wishes to read into them a derision of ProAc and the need to go on the defense, well then it's not my problem.

You are welcome to have the last word. I don't do endless to-and-fros anymore.:stereo:

(Just been reminded why I moved most of my audio tawk to other forums.:cafe:)

Solid, don't be offended by Henry's comments he's been round my place a number of times and knows the room problems I have had (as well as the voices I hear in my head :nuts:) - I will really value his opinion.

Eisenach - that is a really generous offer and I will PM you to see if we can make it work.

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You are lucky to have a fellow ProAcer come round to help you optimise your speaker positioning, G. Be interesting to see the final solution.:)

PS: maybe it's your wonderfully reflexive headgear that's causing the bass boom.gobind.gif Sometimes the solutions are more obvious than we realize.:D

cheerSS:peace:

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JANDL100 wrote:

SSM wrote:
You are lucky to have a fellow ProAcer come round to help you optimise your

speaker positioning, G. Be interesting to see the final solution.:)

That's a bit drastic, isn't it? :sick:

Behave!!! hammer.gif

Why is it my footsteps are always dogged by jestering cable and dac monkeys whenever I surface in the audio sections?:cs:

:D

3add5b74d1.jpg

^ a nicer pic for this thread. AM poses with the Playstation 2, erm, the A1 CD --- Gobind's incoming CDP.:green:

I'll tawk audio again, only in December.:fly:

SS

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gsrai wrote:

Cable Monkey wrote:
SSM wrote:
As for your minor bass issues, could the ProAcs have a hand in it? I have heard other users commenting on ProAc's relatively unPRaTty bassports compared to other brands.
I would suggest that the issue is the 35 watts or restricted current delivery is more of a factor than any inherent issue with the 1SC. The ProAcs don't possess the bass prowess of a similarly sized PMC box which is tight and deep almost regardless of stands and positioning but proper siting and good stands pretty much make the whole issue mute as they do everything else so well.

G, glad to hear you are in the groove again. If you are around next week some time I wouldn't mind dropping in for a listen.:)

Hi H - you're always welcome - I'll drop you a PM to sort out a day ;-)

SS, you temptress you :P- I've no plans to change the speakers (yet ;-)) as I think I can get more out of them with different amps. This is why I say I'm not saying the A1 is a keeper but it is surprisingly good in different ways to the 840A. What it has shown me is what I had been missing and the whole bundle is really quite schweeeeet.

Do you know, I never thought of using the A1 as a pre and then the 840A as a power - an opportunity missed :doh:However it would have been too many boxes for small room so good job I didn't try it.

I have been thinking about poweramps and in particular the 550k (:doh::doh::minikiev:) but that would be a really uncomfortable move into MF'dom . . . :run:

I think this amp could be one for Bourney ;-)

i have far too much irrational& unfounded dislike of MF kit to even consider one G :D

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Bourney wrote:

i have far too much irrational& unfounded dislike of MF kit to even consider one G :D

I know, you're like me fella but that didn't stop me :D

I'll have to bring it round to you (or pop in) - you could be surprised ;-)

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:sos:Just a quick update

After a lot of help getting my laptop to output flac to the USB on the A1 :wall:I can report that the DAC is no slouch. If the V-DAC is anything like this then I can see the attraction. The sound is nicely 3D although confined to close to the speakers but depth is good. Vocals aren't as weighty as the 840C's and it is clear to me that the 840C is better with a wider stage and more snap and depth.

Guitars do really pluck at the heart strings so this could be the MF presentation kicking in (hence why some folks prefer the V-DAC to the DacMagic and vice versa).

I'm a fussy bugger and an idea has formed in the back of my head :bulb: I could sell the 840C and just use the amp with USB and speakers ;-) too soon to say but it's a good downgrade option if I need to.

I'm not noticing my previously mentioned bass concerns today :?

I must test out the phono stage some time soon...anyay back to the Verve :ale:

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Fresh from a visit to G's, I have to say that little amp is quite the charmer. It has the sweetest top end and renders vocals in a way I have seldom ever heard. What can you say about an amp that makes Bruce Springsteen sound like he has a great voice!:PThe sound has texture, strings were particularly well rendered. However the bass issue is there. Essentially the amp has less control over the lower frequencies. This in itself is not too bad, the bass is a tad soft. Problem is on tracks where you expect and rely on the bass to dominate, it can't. This renders music like reggae very difficult to listen to. Push the volume up to compensate and the room issues take over. This is the basis of a very good system. The in built USB DAC is very competent, the phono stage is better than a standard X-LPS v3, probably due to superior power supply. Frankly, at the price G paid it is a steal. I am not certain if it remains sucha bargain if you have to bolt on superchargers to make it work but it is worth persevering with.

It seems some have doubted the amps class A credentials. It seems to me to be well biased into class A. It gets quite hot, uses the whole case as a heat sink and is cleverly designed to increase the surface area without resorting to unsightly ridges and fins for cooling. It needs space around it though, and while not dangerously hot I would keep smallkids away from it. It remains to be seen if long term use will render it unreliable due to heat.

I have to say overall I like it. :)

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Thanks to Henry for popping round - as always, great company and an honest view :^

Biggest revelation for came from the phono stage closely followed by a change of interconnects :shock::shock:

Exploring the soft bass we put on Exodus (Marley) on vinyl and it was amazing - nice tight bass with the holographic sound the A1 was already good at producing - what a revelation :oj:

Going back to CD/DAC the bass was clearly soft so I downgraded the I/C from Chord Chorus 2 to Chord Crimson and the bass tightened up. Henry explained it as the Crimson IC's were letting less bass through that was producing a more enjoyable sound - a bit of a paradox :nuts:but makes sense :)

As stated, the built in DAC is good and I'd put it up against a £3-400 CD player quite comfortably.

It's nice to have the confirmation that I'm not going gaga and this A1 is actually a half decent amp - time to play with the stands/IC's again (and this from a non-cable believer :doh:

IF anyone wants to hear it in situ drop me a PM :)

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audiolad wrote:

Completely agree with SSM about hooking up the X-Can to the 840A - tried the same with my 8000A and it transformed it. I definitely think that valve pre/solid state power is the way for me when I finally have the funds.

That's cool to hear.:^ What I know of the Audiolab sound from the 8000S I heard is - it's precise, tight and well-damped. I'm guessing the X-Can brought some midrange glow to the 8000A's strengths.

[line]

It is enlightening to learn that a "downgrade" in ICs can improve the sound!:shock: I've got to put back some of my older, cheaper ICs to see if they work better with my current kit.

Great to know that your setup has been further optimized, G.

SS

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Okey dokey, as requested by Earl some pics of the A1:

A11.jpg

A12.jpg

A13.jpg

As for how I'm getting on with the amp - I really like it :)

I can switch off and just listen to the music and I've been playing more with the USB DAC to listen to stuff like Radio 5 from my laptop - nice to have a full sound while my team are losing :cs::D

I will be trying some different IC's this week to see if I can tame the bass a little (it doesn't bother me that much now) and maybe replace the sand in my Atacam SE24's with Atabites (Still not sure about this one).

I am now feeling that this amp is more of a bargain than I had given it credit for - I may be wrong about it but I don't feel the urge to try out a Sugden any more.

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I think updates to this thread will be few and far between from now as an unlikely upgrade a few days ago has really moved things along a bit :shock:

I was trying to find ways of curtailing a little bass boom and interconnects were going to me by first port of call when I got to think about the stands.

Currently use Atacama SE24's sand filled and then doing some reading I got to thinking about replacing the sand with some Atacama Atabites due to their higher density and some folks have had a degree of success using them. A quick search on the net and they were c.£30 a tub and I reckoned I'd need 3 tubs - £90 :shock::shock:

Lateral thinking was the order of the day and as luck would have it a pair of Target R4's turned up (thanks Bob :^) with a very kind SOR basis.

Day of reckoning came and I was a bit uncertain what to expect so upon replacing the stands (damn these R4's are heavy) a bit of listening followed and it was no small improvement :shock::shock::shock::oj:

Bass notes took on a snap that wasn't present before and something I didn't think was possible in my den. Bass also went deeper, the boom was still present but nowhere near the levels of before.

What surprised me the most was that the music overall became more focussed and easier to listen to - suffice it to say these stands were staying ;-)

It's difficult to put into words how much an improvement the stands made and it's not exaggeration by saying that even though I enjoyed the 1SC's to date I had them operating at 60% max.

So overall I'm really pleased with the system as it stands :stereo:

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