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About robmid

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    Tewantin, QLD
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  1. FS: Auralic Aries Mini

    Wow. Mine cost around $650 a couple of years ago and I thought that was a bargain.
  2. FS: Auralic Aries Mini

    They are an absolute bargain for the money. 'virtual analog' sound and Spotify Premium are a perfect match. Software updates are automatic so you are always up to date. Works well with an iPad.
  3. If you are like me you will go through your favourite tracks like a kid a lolly shop and it's likely you won't even recognise half the tracks because of what you have been missing. Bass is tight, accurate and very dynamic with the new SC. You will notice badly recorded material but because of the 3d soundstage you will get to appreciate what the engineer is trying to convey.
  4. I believe Chris can add as many input/outputs as you need. He is also working on remote control. Send him an email. By the way I am just a happy customer but keep in touch with Chris to give him feedback so he knows how the SC performs on different systems.
  5. I'm just using the budget MX Shure with a Project preamp. Wait till you hear it. The original SC was really good but the latest one will make you wonder how the performance it possible. I am sitting hear right now listening to Spotify Premium and perhaps it's fractionally less detailed then audio files or CD's I find my jaw dropping in disbelief every time I press play. Hence, I tend to stay up too late frequently now. My perception of 'low cost' sound has been shattered and I now realise that less components in the signal chain can and does give more accurate reproduction with quality speakers.
  6. The SC has a gentle slope up to 25% to 50% (knob position) fills my room. Above that is too loud for my tastes with my Auralic Mini. LP's need a bit more cranking up on my system.
  7. The StereoCoffee is purely an attenuator with virtually nothing in the signal path, hence the purity of sound. Adding an active preamp would defeat the purpose of minimal components. I run my Auralic Mini music server into a 150watt Holton power amp and LS50's which aren't very high sensitivity and full room volume is 50% on the gain control.
  8. Chris and I have been exchanging notes on the NEW preamp. This is his personal assessment, not advertising jargon. "I have been listening mainly to ECM discs, source is my Yamaha CDR HD1500 through a 306 Quad and JR149's and is as realistic as I have ever heard, like piano is perfect no stridency. so a slight improvement on the board you are presently using I am fairly sure, erring toward utter realism. I am certain it would put $15k preamps or nearly anything regardless of price to shame - and given it is a DIY kit represents a massive bargain. I recall hearing a mcIntosh valve balanced preamp with a 10k price tag and it was way too reserved compared to this as though they had backed off all the electronics deliberately, to make it polite as, but in the process losing everything that is important in music."
  9. Hi Tom. The the impossibly realistic sound from new regulator and power board is quite extraordinary. The only soldering is to connect your RCA input/outputs if you aren't getting the installed version and you will need to solder the pot and selector switch unless Chris is doing it for you. All the other connections use screw terminal blocks. I have found them to be a bit fiddly but as long as you tug the connection to make sure it is firmly in place you will be ok. If you get stuck, Chris will always help. He is totally dedicated the the StereoCoffee. I'm located in QLD on the Sunshine Coast. Cheers, Rob
  10. I've experienced that in the past and it feels like the system is straining when it may fine. Both the CloneNote (24 steps) and StereoCoffee (500k ALPS pot) fill my room at 50%. My StereoCoffee uses A 500k ALPS pot which gives very precise low volume control from zero to 50% then you are into 'hold your hat' on territory. Because of this, I prefer the 500k pot to the 50k version.
  11. No. That one is the Tortuga, a completely different beast. The StereoCoffee is a set of modules that are hand built to order by Chris Daly in NZ. The StereoCoffee kit is less than $200 and is so good you will probably never find another preamp that is as addictive. Chris is very accessible and total audio enthusiast who loves live music, not a manufacturer. Just drop him an email at [email protected] and tell him what you need. He can customise his kits to user requirements. Mine is a final prototype and I think I am the first to test one and I am still in awe of what I am hearing, after one month of critical auditioning.
  12. He has a website at https://stereocoffee.wixsite.com/ldrpreamp There are no specs because they wouldn't tell you anything that would describe the performance. In my experience it is the same as my input and the capabilities of my Holton power amp and LS50's. Noise is zero. No signal, no sound.
  13. Channel balance was a bit tricky at first but I connected my meter cable to an RCA and can read directly. Chris managed to explain balance to me so even i could understand after I had completely wrecked the settings and sent it back to him. Once done it was completely stable for months and then was only a few ohms out. Probably better than most pots. I also have the latest CloneNote which has a switch and once I had adjusted balance and output resistance to suit my tastes found the switch quite good in that there was a sweet spot setting I could always find. But being able to adjust the output slope made it easier.
  14. I'm not sure which version of Chris's LDR's you have but over the last 6 months he has upped the quality to an unbelievable level of astonishing sound with totally new Control and Regulator Boards. The improvement is not subtle, it is huge and you won't believe what you have been missing, even in your favourite and least favourite recordings as I am finding. The sound isn't 'neutral' any more. It is accurate, powerful and dynamic with superb bass texture that lets you hear and feel the harmonics of the strings. I have just been tested three prototypes of the new StereoCoffee and giving feedback to Chris and the final version is so far a head of previous versions that they aren't even in the race. If you want to hear sound exactly as it was recorded you can buy an upgrade for about $60, I think. It is worth contacting Chris to find out more. The LDR board hasn't been changed, it is all to do with constant current management. I'm not sure why you would use switched resistors instead of a using good pot because it has nothing to do with the signal and I think you could find it difficult to find the sweet spot. I found the supplied Bourns pot to be too loose so I used an ALPS which cost around $20 as I recall and has lovely feel, like twisting a spoon in honey. Pity you aren't in SE Qld or I could give you a demo to stop you in your tracks. Cheers, Rob
  15. A NEW, FINAL version of the StereoCoffee Power and Control Boards has just been released. Audio performance is immersive and the 3d like sound far exceeds the performance of ALL previous versions which were already pretty damn good. I have been lucky enough to preview a work in progress, as the boards went through several re-designs until Chris was happy. Past performance reviews of previous versions cannot even be compared to the August 2017 redesign and the enjoyment IS ADDICTIVE! Chris’s comments on the new current management system. NOTE: The LED board has not been altered "The new regulator board approaches and conquers theoretical perfection with needed characteristics of LDR's , which are very low voltage ( just 2.5v ) and stable current, These needed characteristics have alluded designers, up until now. The new board improves the isolation and monitoring of current by creating a potential difference for the anode and cathode different from signal ground. The initial supply needed is regulated 15 volt positive, with option of 12V AC connection soon available. There are no changes to the 13A control board, making this upgrade available to all existing 13A owners. Just one additional wiring point is added, making this upgrade very easy to get going. New customers can choose either the earlier standard regulator at no additional cost of the kit, or choose to purchase the new board at $60.00 to accompany their kit.” Kits available at: http://stores.ebay.com.au/stereo-coffee Chris’s comments on performance were experienced with my own KEF LS50/Holton system. “ Now aside from the technical detail... the sound, it is now revealing exactly what is on each CD, and as you will hear with good CD's there is far far more than you first thought. Pink Floyd's Pulse Comfortably Numb not a outstanding recording - but not too bad either - once David gets to his solo - and before that too there is also a depth like I have never heard before. But select a really well engineered recording like Jan Garbarek's Rites, and every whisper and layer is finely etched out before you. But its not only depth, its forward too ( what I was searching for ) as well, but realisticly forward not exaggerated as Stina Nordanstams first album appears on lesser audio systems. And LR stereo is staggering. It is though, not an effect, it is rather what is whatever is on the CD. Put on a dry recording like Masters Apprentices "Catty" from Choice Cuts and the intro drums it is dry as a bone. Yes's Close to the Edge sounds like a typical early 70's recording - nothing is added, and you hear as good as they could do in those times. Some recording studios took things to much higher levels of quality though in the 1970's ie King Crimson's Larks Tongues in Aspic ( Command Studios ) and Genesis Nursery Cryme ( Trident Studios ). So whatever was in the engineers and musicians ability is heard. “ If you can get to the Sunshine Coast and are curious about LDR Preamps please P.M. me. I can demo the DIY LightSpeed, CloneNote and latest StereoCoffee Passive Preamps running Spotify Premium on my LS50's and a $1000 DIY Holton power amp. You WILL be surprised and might even be converted! Cheers, Rob