Friday, January 27, 2012

eBay strikes again!

I rarely just comb eBay these days. Instead, I rely on saved searches for things that I actually use. However, occasions arise when a seller's "other items" have something that I maybe should not buy, but I "buy it now" anyway... usually due to a well below market value cost... in this case it was a lot of cartridges... I have been wanting to learn a little more about HiFi from the late mono era back into the heart of the 78 years... this seemed like the perfect thing to make me learn something... the problem when I do this is that I realize just how much it is that I have to learn - DOH!

So now it is time to learn... but on this one particular cartridge, google is not, well, googling very well... the name, number, and abbreviation is just too common... so I have these Electro Voice (EV) model 16 cartridges.. so anyone who can help point me to some good information on this cart will receive one... heck, two! of these hopefully not obsolete and total junk carts in the mail... how was that for abusing my blog power?

and I will send one to anyone who can identify the background in the above picture... (that was a bit nicer, wasn't it?)


back from vacation....


ahhh... a *real* vacation... and thank you to my lovely lady who actually won the trip at her job.... thanks, baby! it was exactly what the doctor ordered....

Musical accompaniment to my "plant, hop, swish... plant, hop, swish"..

My Morning Jacket - "Z"
Mingus - "Blues and Roots"
Air - "Moon Safari"
Muddy Waters - "His Best: 1947 to 1955"
The Black Keys - "Rubber Factory"
The Disco Biscuits - "Trancefusion Radio Vol II"
G. Love and Special Sauce - "Best of..."
King Sunny Ade - "Juju Music"
James Brown - "Star Time - Mr. Dynamite"
Seattle Loft Party (Skerik, Sawka, Watts) 2/22/02

Saturday, January 21, 2012

they all look alike to me.

here we have 4 pair of SUT's that all look the same.  If called by name, they answer to:

1:10 for a zyx airy / A90 to the paciffic northwest
1:20 for the rev's shilabe
1:10 for MJC's MySonic
1:10 for a Kleos.

hidden behind the scene is a soon to be extinct breed.

One of the last bombs is for a Colibri and headed to Hong Kong.  Aside from the common sonic signature the other fact that brings this family together is that they are all wound with silver wire.


Thursday, January 19, 2012


Since we only have a few days left of uncensored internet in the US, I feel that it is time to introduce you all to a new black box.  These simple cases effectively enclose and shield a single SUT.  They are utilitarian and on the scale we work at, they do the job nicely.  In the future they will be dressed up a bit and integrated into a lame attempt at a product but for now they exist as the next step beyond the bomb.

Our entire goal is to give credit where credit is due and the inspiration for this particular shielding came from frank who was the first person to practically box up my SUT's.  While I have successfully made them silent in "odd" but "technically correct" packaging, somehow the aesthetic doesn't inspire people as shown by the "where's waldo" bomb below.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Western Electric 12a and 13a combination..

So I have this book.. Sound-Picture Recording and Projection... it is from around 1931... and for quite some time now I have been fascinated how it just refers to a high flying 12a and a floor mounted 13a as a "system"... yeah, right! I mean who has BOTH of these horns???

I have studied the horns... and how they are referenced in this book.. and I dig the thought behind the "system"... the 12a is shorter.. it leans to the high side of the spectrum... upper midrange heavy... and the 13a is longer... more low frequency loading.. so the air mass rolls the top end a bit more and the length extends the bass down a bit... so it is more midbass... and when used in tandem, you can now see the "system"...

and the 12a is flown up high... your brain will follow the upper frequencies more for "image source"... and the nice touch of the 13a out in front of the 12a as its path length is longer - time alignment, eh?

and I would go into the control system.. how the 200A works.. and all the impedance charts in this text, but I mean, really, who has *multiple* pairs of these??

so then a few months back our Music Maker of the Month sent me these shots... I have been blown away ever since...

and now in a new home:



Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A Blasting New Year.

Spent part of new years eve old skool.

went through a few different vintage boxes and a few size D batteries. (I was amazed how much better things sounded on batteries)

They were in the 12 cell and 30-40 pound range.

And all of the music was analog!

Analog even when we listened those funny round disks.

Now that is one trick box!  It auto senses, cues records finds tracks and plays both sides. (dual linear tracking arms and cartridges) I asked how it tracked on the move and there is a pressure switch under the left rear foot that only takes a small piece of duct tape to disable.  We didn't skip it but then again we didn't try too hard.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Music Maker of the Month - Joe Roberts!

It is about time that I honored Joe as Music Maker of the Month! This is the man that wrote Sound Practices! What we owe him cannot be understated, so to have overlooked him this long is a crime. My apologies, Joe. Here you go:

What Joe listens to is the amazing system above. Just check out these specifications:

The Dell AS500PA Sound Bar Computer Speakers are high-quality stereo sound speakers for anyone looking for superior quality sound with space considerations and less wires. These Sound Bar series speakers help in improving the quality of multimedia presentations, online training, gaming, DVD playback or simply listening to music on your system. The Dell AS500PA Sound Bar Computer Speakers deliver 14 watts of total RMS output to generate crystal clear sound. These high-quality stereo sound speakers are lightweight, smartly designed and can be easily attached to the Dell Ultrasharp monitor.

did you catch that? "or simply listening to music".. the fifth thing listed. Clearly they do not know their potential. Joe has owned darn near every piece of vintage gear worth owning, and I do mean *thousands* of pieces of gear, and this is what he chooses. Dell needs to have this unit reviewed. They are missing out on sales!

The installation is so very simple as well. Even audiophiles can hook this thing up:

I forgot to mention the features. Just check out the side headphone jack and single control - volume only.. very audiophile!

And do not take this as a joke. Joe still listens to gear of the highest quality to continually keep his reference high. Just check out the pictures from one of his trips to see friends in Korea. [here is the link to more pictures]

So Joe, thank you for writing Sound Practices! I personally cannot thank you enough for what it taught me. I hope in some little way this helps.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Nice Rack!

How often can you get away with uttering the title of this entry in public?  I spent the new year in DC again visiting and after two years of waiting we finally installed his new rack.

Constructed from slabs of 3 and 4" thick maple and 2" threaded rods stability is not an issue and in a pinch it can serve alternate duties.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Holiday Emergencies

In the aftermath of the holidays the occasional emergency comes up that needs to be dealt with.  In this case my youngest employee lost a key piece to the assembly of one of his leisure time activities.  Given that he only gets five minutes a day outside the factory, I felt it would be in violation of the holiday spirit to put the older employee to work on Christmas day.  I quickly got over that.

I assure all of you that even though he was operating heavy machinery on 3 hours of sleep, the caffeine and sugar kept him quite alert while he moved the cross slide.  The end result was a functional part to allow the completion of the younger's leisure time activity and it only took 15 minutes and cost three fingers to complete. (don't worry the fingers were all mine)

When the younger commented on the difference in color, I simply replied the new piece is made out of Delrin and don't come complaining to me when a couple Bionicles show up in the morgue because the ABS part failed during a crucial operation.

Happy New Year to all and to all a good night. (except of course for the workers who do not have time to sleep)

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