Acoustics

Our aim at AudioCollective is to play our records through Hi-fi equipment which offers both affordability and great sound quality.

Hi-fi has made huge strides in recent years and the sound quality available to enthusiasts for less than 4 zero £s would not so long ago cost nearer 5 zero £s.

The other great thing about Hi-fi kit is, looked after, it will last for years.  Much of our kit has been bought from Ebay for prices well below new.

Our current set-up is as follows:

Amplifier – Arcam A39

Arcams are famous for their smooth sound and their reserves of power which create a deep and enveloping sound field.  The A39 is no exception.  120 Watts of power into 8 ohms but double that into 4 ohms – which is important because our speakers are rated 4 ohms!

Speakers – Monitor Audio Silver 10’s

These are room filling beasts.  Dual 8 inch bass drivers ensure effortless control of the most challenging tracks.   The gold dome tweeter provides treble to spare.  They handle up to 250w of power and go as low as 30HZ.  They are not the last word in subtlety and KEF’s produce a better soundstage.  But for our AudioCollective nights they are pretty much perfect!

Turntable – Rega Planar 3  

Rega has pioneered the use of lightweight rigid plinths. Clever use of lightweight particulate core with a highly rigid phenolic resin skin became the foundations of the high level of performance achieved by the now iconic original Planar range.

Our iteration of the Planar 3 is a late 80s model featuring the legendary RB300 tonearm. Since acquisition we have upgraded this turntable with a new ceramic bearing and a Fidelity Designs produced alloy based sub platter (http://www.fidelitydesignsltd.co.uk/subplatters/subplatters.html). These upgrades adding solidity, clarity and punch to the lower frequencies and adding a more natural dynamic to the overall sound.

Cartridges

We alternate between an AT95EX and an Nagaoka MP-110 for our Audio Collective nights. The Nagaoka offering more bass and slam and the Audio Technica arguably providing a touch more detail and precision.

DAC – Nord Easy-Stream Connect DAC

The Nord Easy-Stream suite of components has been designed and built by our friend, Colin North of Nord Acoustics. This is a standalone streamer with upgraded DAC section using Khadas Tone Board with ES9038 DAC brings £1800 streamer rivalling performance.

Details here: https://www.nordacoustics.co.uk/easy-stream

We feed our streamer with Hi-Res and CD quality sounds courtesy of Qobuz.

Cables

We have recently upgraded our cables to deliver improved clarity and stereo separation.

Chord Rumour 2 Speaker Cable – Amplifier to Speakers

Chord Rumour combines silver-plated conductors with Teflon® insulation to bring an outstanding level of detail and tonal neutrality to a very discreet and easy to install speaker cable.

Chord Rumour speaker cable was the first speaker cable that Chord designed. Chord were already aware of the real benefits to be had from using silver plated conductors in conjunction with Teflon® insulation. In the course of experimentation, they found that twisting the two conductors together bought some real and dramatic improvements. There is nothing new about the use of twisted conductors in the manufacture of speaker cable, but at the time, this approach had fallen out of fashion in favour of heavy gauge parallel conductors. A lot of work was carried out to establish the number of twists required in order to optimise the performance.

Rumour uses 19 strands of silver plated oxygen free copper per conductor, surrounded by Teflon® insulation. The conductors are 16 gauge and although this appears to be surprisingly small for a speaker cable, its performance is anything but and its current capabilities surprisingly high

Chord Clearway Interconnect – DAC to Amplifier

The Chord Clearway Analogue cable features unique Chord Company ARAY conductor geometry, developed from the award-winning Sarum Tuned ARAY. ARAY conductor geometry allows us to produce cables that carry high levels of detail and dynamic information. Most importantly, this ARAY conductor cable carries signals with real musical coherence. Every Clearway interconnect is built to an exacting standard and rigorously tested at their UK facility. The Clearway Analogue is part of a range of interconnects and speaker cables, including analogue and digital cables, along with the award-winning Chord Clearway speaker cable.

The Clearway Analogue features Chord’s unique ARAY conductor geometry. Conductors are high quality oxygen free copper, insulated with FEP and mechanically damped with a specially selected PVC. Shielding is provided by dual layer heavy gauge foil.

The Clearway is fitted with Chord VEE 3 RCA plugs, including PTFE insulation between signal / return contacts. The VEE 3 RCA is a low mass RCA plug with direct silver-plating to improve signal transfer.

Leave a Reply