Analog Domain

Just move into my new home with 11ft headroom which is unprecedented in my previous apartments. Although it is just the first 2 weeks since I moved in and only a few days since I have connected back my system, I can feel there is much more breathing space for the system. Sound is progressive and open with Analog Domain driven by its specially designed power cords. Music flows out with rhythmic speed and control. With more acoustics adjustment, I believe the system would even sound better.

New space opens up more opportunities but at the same time posts new challenges in terms of acoustics treatment just like AE2.



  • Another angle seeing AD sitting peacefully on the Virginia class SRA....cannot find a better match!
  • Nice set-up and even nicer apartment. Congrats!
  • Nice set-up and even nicer apartment. Congrats!
  • Geez, my Marvel boy, that's what I called audio porn. seem to have quite serious acoustics imbalance on the right hand side. Huh,,, no one can fix that big hole there.
  • Voy,

    Though my prime objective of the new home is for better living, I have also taken serious consideration on the room acoustics and positioning of my system. This is already one of the best that I could find and I know there is also imperfection which I cannot resolve immediately. I shall work together with PT and Jlam to overcome / mitigate this.

  • Marvel兄, 恭喜你新居入伙. 你的音響名器冠絕全港九新界, 希望你新環境能發揮其應有的潛能. Tidal喇叭連貫中性不用多說, 你對功放更是原子後級的典範. 右邊要做點功夫了. 聴聞你還未升級vekian至OPUS版, 究竟為何? 此乃素碼訊源之倚天屠龍, 難度Marvel兄已看破紅塵?
  • 火兄,多謝你的讚賞。現在地方是寬敞了但又遠離市區遠了一點。雖然自己駕車也很方便但朋友到訪說甚麼也比以前較遠。火兄一矢中的,右面樓梯連接樓上的而且確減卻了右面喇叭對後牆的效應。和PT 今天也討論了一兩個方案。在大部分家居要有一個百份百良好的環境實在不易!盡力而為吧。vekian opus upgrade會是明年的其中一個planned item.現在還是在和neodio 蜜月期間,樂也融融!
  • Marvel兄, 請問你有冇聴過杜林(Durand)唱臂? 上週有幸在一醫生朋友聽過佢安在你的達文西Gabriel盤上, 左邊是Grandezza, 右邊是Durand, 大家一起用上了元逐唱頭, phono是Zanden 1200MK3. 比較十分殘酷, 杜林可以話將佢拋離, 音色透明好多, 靜好多; 難怪肥仔基收埋來賣. 那支二十萬的新大佬Telos, 醫生朋友遲了一日決定也買不到, 最快要等到2012的八月.

    Da Vinci支Virtu臂亦是萬眾期待, 玩黑膠的真正樂趣就是等了又等....我都係聽Opus樂也融融吧!
  • edited November 2011

    If you guys are talking about Durand arm in Chinese, I hope you don't mind me jumping in. Your analog experience is simply not completed without a Durand arm. I had one mounted on the Da Vinci Unison. The noise floor of the entire system is reduced dramatically. A complete analog experience is not just about zero tracking error which Micha's Thales has done this exceedingly well. It is also not solely about rich tonality in the case of Da Vinci. These two arms represent the best modern arm indisputably so to speak.

    But Durand is another class. Imagine there is some kind of SRA virginia board invisibly attached underneath it. The Talea 2 is great in every musical and audiophile aspect. My friends over on the west coast mount the Ortofon A90 on it with breath-taking result. Who is the luck owner of Durand's groundbreaking telos?

    Don't say you are any sort of serious vinyl-phile if you don't have a Durand arm. I am fucking serious.
  • Durand Talea 2 is another class above the Da Vinci Grandezza, no doubt about it. That's why hardcore DV fans like me is eagerly waiting for Da Vinci's Virtu arm. I agree the trouble of analog is the waiting game. It takes ages for the manufacturer to deliver. It is better for the manufacturer not to reveal what's under the sleeve before they are ready for production. This is a better management for customer expectation. The Telos arm by Durand was up and running in RAMF 11 before accepting orders and a firm delivery date, regardless of the duration, is set and finalized. I prefer this way more.
  • Although my room is still far from optimal in terms of acoustics adjustment, I want to share a bit more about how my system lives with the new listening space and what contributions Analog Domain has made to fill up the space arguably doubled the size of my previous one.

    I certainly miss the new upgrade of Takumi K70 to Generation 2 as I heard from PT that this upgrade is revolutionary rather than evoluationary. This I can faithfully understand given the fact that the K10 which was created 2 years after the K70 has managed to addressed or at least covered many of the shortcomings of the Gen 1 K10, such as speed and dynamics.

    Analog Domain put me away from the grieve of missing K70 Gen 2 mating with very well with K10 via the balanced connection. It delivers extremely refined details with softness and musicality not resembling any solid state amplifiers that I have listened or used. Vitus was the last pair of SS power amp that I used and my pale recollection of Vitus was its glorious treble and resolution in the midrange. It is not easy to compare now with Analog Domain although in my current setup, what I can tell is the body and scale are more adequately represented without compromising on the quality of the treble performance. One obvious observation between AD and Vitus is at low volume of listening, the microdynamics and rhythm depicted by AD is obviously much more organic and lively than Vitus which at that time, I commented already that Vitus is doing a very very good job in this attribute compared to other amps. Again, I wish to use the analogy of a muscular man, it is easy to have him jumping up and down, moving heavy things around, but when it comes to picking up a small needle and sew a button on a shirt, this is not going to be easy. I can feel AD is delivering music like a very skilful woman sewing rhythmically and transforming into a giant when it needs to handle orchestral type. Most importantly the transformation is much quicker, smoother and seamless that what you have seen in the computer grapics of the movie Transformer !!

    The new space opens up more opportunities for me to capitalise the outstanding quality of my system and at the same time it is equally challenging and interesting for me to make this system sounds right in this space before I consider further changes on my system components. I learnt this from PT when going through with him the various tuning stages ever since he had their Showroom 1 and now Showroom 2 established. Without addressing the fundamentals such as noise, mechanical vibration, electricity contamination, speaker positioning and acoustics, all assessment and therefore decision to change components could be inaccurate.

  • edited November 2011
    I just had a wonderful lunch time because our Tidal system leapfrogs to the next uncharted dimension after the ARTEMIS mono blocks are setup to drive the Sunray main speakers. The Artemis fundamentally changes my mind of what solid state amplifier can do to the service of music. The vocal finesse (including all previous tube expereinces of my own journey)is something I had never experienced until this afternoon. Tests of orchestra and symphonies are mandatory but they are too easy for the Calysto and we can take it for granted that the Artemis will only do better.

    A simple song by Jacky Cheung - 你的名字, 我的姓氏 - 清唱 version - when it was played through the OPUS source, Tidal prescenio and the Analog Domain Artemis, I dare say probably only Jacky Cheung himself can verify the remaining shortcomings. The human flesh feelings are just mesmerizing. The calmness brought from the Artemis to my system is magical. It is so much more relaxed. A walk-thru expereince into the "soundstage" is not an exaggeration. The ability to control power with ease anytime is given but to deliver it with style and finesse in accord with musicians' original intention put the amp in another ballpark.

    I am still speechless.

  • As an owner of Calysto, I am extremely courious to learn how much better can the Artemis be over the Calysto. I sneaked it at 9pm last night forcing PT to leave home after his dinner time, and I apologized for that as I am pretty sure this amp will never return to AE after delivery.

    This is tour-de-force in solid state amplification engineering. The jump from Calysto to Artemis is an revolutionary step rather than evolution. It seems this brand can deliver the magic of higher the power, higher the resolution, and the lower the noise floor. Nobody would dispute the ultra silence of AE1 with two Troys and one Spartan cleaning up all ground and AC noises. The installation of the Artemis drops the overall system noise notably further. The deepest octave is well controlled with recoil/elasticity. To compare, my Calysto's control on the lowest octave is not as stable as the Artemis. The dual presence of doubel bass and horn is articulated with protruding horn energy with metallic color whilst the wooden double bass is pitched with full woody resonances and elasticity. The image of both are very stable. They just stay there, and the energy progressively increase with distance. That remain true in the reproduction of Mahler symphonies.

    Last but not least is the contribution of Dalby wooden feet at the margin is "exponential" in terms of unveiling even more subtle tone color across whole frequency, especially the bass. This is unusual in my expereince of feet. I just have to grab a set.

    The Silvery AD logo is different from the black logo of Calysto. That's cool.

  • Uncle Ray,

    Had you got a chance to audition Goldmund Telos 3500 before? This amp is about EUR300,000. This amp is good and the bass performance of them is similar to your description of the Artemis. Anyway, the justifications to spend EUR300,000 on Goldmund amp may be strong for mainland Chinese but not for me.

    Unlike Patek Philippe watch, the brand premium on hi end audio is meaningless because they will never appreciate in value or be sold in auction houses. The brand premium rather helps the used dealer to sell them quicker. But do they offer good buy of these brand in the first place?
  • I am very excited to have PT coming to my place this afternoon. Delivering the 2nd Troy, MK2 is just secondary, the primary purpose is to help me to tame the new room.

    PT spent actually 3 hours listening, moving things around, removing and adding WaveKinetics around....I was shameful not to be able to help him much because I was too tied up with an urgentp piece of work required by end of today...anyway, I was still able to 'split' my ears from my mind and eyes to allow me multi-tasking between the room tuning and my work.

    In summary, what PT has done leading to positive contribution to the overall performance are:

    1. adjusting the speaker position with an attempt to offset the imbalance between the left hand and right side. I am ordering 2 piece of reflection board which would hopefully further improve the imbalance by putting them on the right hand side blocking the small corridor and staircase.

    2. setting the Analog Domain 6db more on the output gain which in AE showroom, PT said it is not possible because of the relative breathing space and the speaker in my space compared to AE showroom. In a nutshell, my speaker is now regarded as a bit too small to fill up the space necessitating AD to work harder.

    3. moving around the Tidal diffusor and some other absorbent boards to yield the best composition. This is not final yet, PT will bring the 'Wings' to my place as he reckons that the Wings can diffuse a wider frequency range than the Tidal which may help in my room. Again, this is a question for both of us at the moment.

    4. Last but not the least, the installation of the Troy 2, separating the source and the amps.

    The overall improvement is from a hollow sound commented by PT when he first came in to something PT called 'listen-able'. This is hopefully a 'marginal pass' to PT's standard. To me, the bass details and quality would still need to be improved in order to reconstruct a more complete sound stage with the right dimensionality and richness in the texture. As PT said in one of the music we listened, he can feel the lux and lust of the horn but not the scale! Still some room for improvements.

    At the end of the 3 hours, both PT and myself felt quite contented on the achievements today and we started talking about the difference between Calysto and Artemis. The more PT described about Artemis, the more I was tempted to listen to it so I suggested we go to the showroom rightaway. It is a bit crazy to me to go from my home in Tung Chung to Central in the midst of a late afternoon, but we are audiophiles and some times when the 'fever' comes, one just cannot resist not to seek the cure....

    In about 40mins later, we were already sitting in the AE showroom starting to switch on the Artemis and the others. Communing between Tung Chung and Central is just 30mins which is much shorter than many people's perception....

    3 changes have been made since I last visited: addition of 5 sets of Wings as diffusors, Dalby feet and the Artemis. This does not include the fine adjustment on the speakers, etc.

    We listened to a few more CDs and the CDs that we have heard in my place. I must say the level of performance attained after the addition of the above 3 items have been phenomenal. Artemis, compared to Calysto is much much more resourceful and in control forming a even stronger couple with the Sunray. Noise platform is a record low rendering a more transparent soundstage. IN listening to the Eason live concert that we have heard countless times, I can feel somebody was screaming at Eason at the far end of the Hung Hom Stadium, which in the past, it is just a small voice on the right top corner in the AE showroom, now, it is exactly Row Z (just to show how far it is from the stage) about 60m from my listening position !!

    Jacky Cheung was another CD that we have repeatedly listen in my place and in the showroom...the track: 'Your First Name, My Last Name'...I told PT that now I understand why the showroom has impressed so many is just cannot be more 'real' than bringing the whole studio and Jacky into the virtual space in front of us. Jacky's breathing inter alia the singing, the silence of the pause, the integration with the background music, all are vividly presented with the right spatial separation with solid color and texture. Is it a real voice or just a recording reproduced in a virtual space? I can assure you that on blind test, such difference is getting blurred in the new and latest setup in this showroom which I now wish to call it as 'The Killing Field'...Almost no one can survive without a re-think of what they can further improve after listening to the level of performance the showroom can attain.

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