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coffeemachinist

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About coffeemachinist

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  1. coffeemachinist

    The 2018 Hi-Fi Show (Melbourne)

    I had the same bloke come through my room and he was still stung by that, and although I couldn't oblige him with a CD source, I found his track on spotify (ogg vorbis compression) and gave it a whirl. FWIW it sounded lovely. A really delightful recording ofGeoff Penny, a guitarist from the Yarra Valley here in Victoria. He sent me a lossless WAV that night and it sounded even better.
  2. coffeemachinist

    The 2018 Hi-Fi Show (Melbourne)

    Second year attending, and first year exhibiting (Lucie Audio, room 1202 - shared with Jean-marie from Microphase) for me. A really enjoyable three days, good on you @marc for your dedication to promoting hi fi at all levels. A really switched on crowd this year, saturday in particular was pumping! In future I think it would be great to keep the show going into the evenings - particularly on friday, more might be inclined to come down after work if they knew they could get a few solid hours in. Music selection is always a difficult one, but I tried to accommodate requests via tidal and skewed the music to my personal tastes. Some hated it, but many loved it and discovered some new artists (Agnes Obel got some new fans) so I think that worked. Similarly to last year, it's impressive just how much Australian manufacturers of all sizes are bringing to the table. Nick and Anthony at Hulgich / Holton particularly never fail to impress and I have huge respect for their work. Same goes for Rod at Legend. I'm pretty sure I'll be back bigger and better next year, Jean-Marie and I managed to co-share the room pretty well but most punters didn't quite get the idea and it caused a bit of confusion. To those that came through 1202 when I was in session, can I ask you for your impressions? This was the bamboo or black bookshelfs on tall stands with the orange and dark grey electronics. Cheers! -Rick, Lucie Audio
  3. Well done Jean-Marie. Personally having heard these speakers chez JM's apartment, they blew me away by what they could do in a moderately proportioned room. Bass with extra loading off the wall from the rear facing drivers was more than ample and they just sounded sweet. As Arthur said, very articulate Audax tweeter. Lovely stuff.
  4. Item: Yamaha WXC-50 wireless streaming preamplifier Location: Melbourne, Northcote 3070 Price: $250 firm. Item Condition: barely used, cosmetically almost mint, some extremely tiny paint chips on the lid that I could see. I'm picky. Reason for selling: NLR - upgraded to Bluesound Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only Extra Info: Great little unit. Very extensive features and IO. MusicCast works well, as does AirPlay and Spotify Connect which is what I was doing. Onboard ESS Sabre DAC or use it as a digital transport. Pick up very much preferred but if there are no takers I can organise delivery at cost as I have the original packaging. Pictures:
  5. Item: Massdrop x. Alex Cavalli CTH headphone amplifier Location: Northcote, Melbourne 3070 Price: $220 Item Condition: new in box, tube installed but that’s as far as I ever got Reason for selling: not being used Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only Extra Info: Not getting a look in at present. Preference for local pickup, flexible with times. Pictures:
  6. Item: Quad 34 pre-amp and matching 405 power amp Location: Northcote 3070, Melbourne Price: $850 for quick sale Item Condition: Very good, all working flawlessly Reason for selling: Not being used, funds needed elsewhere Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only Extra Info: Bought from SNA member Cookster for substantially more than asking price, who had both units worked on by Esmond Pitt of Dada Electronics Australia, an authority on Quad refurbishing. Service invoices available on request, about $600 worth in total in 2015. Included are some high quality DIN-DIN and DIN-RCA interconnects from Flashback Sales in the UK, using Deltron and REAN/Neutrik connectors. Pickup would be greatly appreciated, flexible with times. Pictures:
  7. Well, firstly a big thank you to @TomW and @chefscuba70 for facilitating a time slot at short notice, and to the Sydney Audio Club cohort for welcoming us so warmly on the day. It's been a fun if short trip for us seeing some existing and potential customers in Sydney, and Sunday's presentation was a great way to cap it all off. It's really fulfilling as a new manufacturer to get to this stage in the process and see that many find value in what we're doing for the reasons we hoped you would, and that there is a growing acceptance and understanding of some of the technology we use in a discerning audience such as yourselves! So just thought I'd provide a few more details on the ancillary components used on the day - Source used for the first half was a Bluesound Node2 streamer in fixed output mode (connected via toslink optical to the Lucie DSP pre-amp), pulling music from Tidal via a 4G modem. The Tidal playlist can be viewed here. Cabling - nothing special at all for power, interconnects between the pre and power combo were Belden with Canare terminals, and speaker cable was Canare 4s11 with run of the mill banana plugs. Internal speaker cabling is teflon insulated silver plated stranded copper in a twisted pair between the binding post and driver terminals. No passive components at all in the full range and 2-way loudspeakers. So thanks again to all attendees, I really enjoyed the afternoon, and thought the BYO music selection through the Oppo sounded fantastic - especially the Gluck piece and the DSD track - anyone have the title of that one? Of course if there are any follow up questions, please don't hesitate to ask, and I'll be passing back through Sydney really briefly on Sunday if anyone wants to lighten my load and grab a pre-amp on the way home to Melbourne... 🙂 Cheers, Rick
  8. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Great photos Ken! Cheers!
  9. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Thanks all - have made contact with @chefscuba70 via PM and we will see if it comes together for the August meeting!
  10. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Not as yet Marten, we were lucky enough to make a connection with the right person to facilitate the Melbourne presentation at relatively short notice, I don't yet have any contacts with the Sydney club, but I'd definitely put it on the drawing board. I'll actually be in Sydney in a week or so to deliver our first products to a customer and see some other folks, so if you've got any suggestions for people to see or are there yourself and would like a demo, do get in contact - happy to follow up! Cheers, Rick
  11. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    @Sir Sanders Zingmore most welcome! We're on Arthurton rd in Northcote 3070.
  12. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Hi Ian, Welcome to stop by any time! I think an audition would impress - could also loan you our prototype Hypex amp if you want to try it out in your system. I find the ncore's to be as close to the idea of 'straight wire with gain' amplification that I've ever heard. Not saying that's the holy grail necessarily, but it's captured my interest for sure.
  13. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Yep, I deliberated long and hard about the question of whether to go down the path of in-cabinet electronics. For the reasons outlined below I decided that for me it wasn't the way to go. For the argument of de-cluttering the cable runs, I figure once you have run 240V power to each cabinet, you might as well just have a four core traditional speaker cable rather than power and signal from source to speaker one, then processed signal from speaker one to two. Unless you go wireless - and we are not there yet to implement that at a quality level I'd be comfortable with. DSP capable plate amps certainly are around, but none that would allow me to maintain volume control in the analog domain, via remote - a key advantage of our pre-amp in my view. The Hypex amps generate quite a bit of heat, even our substantial heat sink gets warm. I don't like the idea of sitting them in non ventilated wooden boxes and feeding in 240V. I like the idea of giving customers flexibility to BYO amplification - some people will have power or integrated amps they know and love, but want to add DSP to the mix. This approach achieves that. I'm proud of the work we've done on our electronics enclosures, and would hope our customers appreciate them and put them on display, while being compact and visually unobtrusive. This approach gives maximum opportunity to expand or upgrade the capabilities down the line, without having to design and manufacture a completely new amp/DSP module. Hope that makes sense! Cheers, Rick
  14. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Hi Ian, A pertinent question! As of right now, no - but it's in the works. It's early days and I wanted to focus on the products first and foremost, as there's not much use having a website, marketing material and sales platform while the products go unfinished. But - I have been posting updates on my favourite social media platform Instagram - lots of behind the scenes and work in progress stuff if you're interested. You can find it at www.instagram.com/lucieaudio Also I'll post below my notes and technical background of my designs - and of course I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have. The technical foundations of Lucie lie in room correction and efficient amplification, and their liberation in getting the best out of some fairly unconventional loudspeaker designs. Central to this is the premise that most commercially available speaker designs are based on a series of assumptions relative to the end user's room acoustics and tonal preferences, which are only by occasional chance completely accurate. The uncomfortable fact in sound reproduction is that the listening environment is so often the deciding factor in overall enjoyment of the system, and it is a topic that is seldom addressed when choosing one piece of equipment over another. Tone controls or EQ are very unfashionable topics in modern hi fi, and I'm not sure why that happened - often the recommendation is to buy this or that because it has this or that tonal balance, but this is fraught with peril for so many reasons - why not have freedom to tune the system as a whole, together with the room! The use of DSP allows just this - to achieve the best possible result in terms of tonal balance, soundstage and accurate presentation of instruments and voices. The DSP pre-amplifier - Our pre-amp is built around the capabilities and feature set of the MiniDSP 2x4HD processor board. This gives us the power to process the stereo audio stream in real time to perform room correction and digital crossover functions. Room correction function is powered by Dirac, world leaders in this technology. The Dirac Live platform combines powerful and flexible capabilities with an easy to follow measurement process. In brief, this process maps out the response characteristics of the loudspeakers in the room in a 3D grid around the listening position, using a series of frequency sweeps recorded by a supplied measurement microphone connected to a PC running the measurement utility. After completing the measurements, the summed frequency response is displayed, and a target or desired frequency response curve can be superimposed over the measured data and a set of filters generated to map the two together. This data is then uploaded to the unit and stored in one of four configuration slots, which can be easily activated via the unit's remote control or via the software utility. This provides great flexiblity in that up to four combinations of tonal response and optimal listening position can be stored and readily recalled. To get the best from the MiniDSP hardware, we developed an active analog volume control board to provide the best approach to gain structure, ie. maintaining volume control in the analog domain, before power amplification. A custom linear power supply for the volume control and DSP boards ensure top audio performance. Power amplification - Our power amps are built on modular designs from Hypex in the Netherlands. Hypex are at the forefront of a new era of ultra high performance Class D amplification. Amplifiers based on their Ncore technology developed by Bruno Putzeys are now appearing in the highest echelon of products from boutique manufacturers like Mola Mola, to mainstream brand offerings such as the NAD Master series. Modular design allows us to configure number of channels and power output according to individual needs. Specifications of Ncore amp modules are superb across the board, and their characteristics focus on neutrality and resolving power - Ncore is the first Class-D amplifier not just to nudge the best linear amplifiers, but to surpass them in every aspect relevant to sound quality. Loudspeakers - Our philosophy with loudspeakers is to stray somewhat from established design norms, made possible by harnessing the power of DSP and active crossovers available in the pre-amp, and multiple channels of amplification in our power amp. Central to this is the goal of eliminating phase issues across the mid range, where our auditory system is most sensitive. Analog dividing networks or crossovers found in conventional hi-fi speakers are used to split up the full spectrum of audio into smaller chunks that can be effectively handled by transducers designed for low, mid or high frequencies. These sometimes very complex networks of passive components (inductors, resistors and capacitors) have a significant influence on the overall character of a speaker design. Careful attention must be paid to their properties, individually and as a whole, if the combined acoustic energy of the drive units and crossover network is to be rendered accurately in the time domain, and at equal amplitude independent of frequency. Of crucial importance is the sum of the signal when it is originating from two separate sources, for example in the overlapping range between high and low frequency drivers. The best drivers available can be made worthless by an improper crossover or cabinet design, but even when optimised, a passive crossover design will entail several compromises and assumptions about the influence of the listening room, for example how much baffle step compensation or bass boost should be added to cancel cabinet losses - this is a variable and dependent on final placement in the room, yet it must be baked into the crossover design. So for us, active crossovers and room equalisation allow a key advantage - to dispense with the cost and complexity of analog crossover networks wherever possible, and give access to a wider range of drivers with some tempting advantages, taming the characteristics that would otherwise make them unfeasible in passive designs. Cabinet materials are chosen for their quality - sustainable, high density and naturally beautiful timber laminates, precision CNC cut and hand assembled and finished. Due to the laminar sheet construction, inner wall profiles are able to be uniquely contoured to minimise internal reflections and cabinet resonances. Lucie Model One loudspeaker (names TBC!) The simplest expression of the Lucie loudspeaker philosophy - a single point source driver delivers the full audio signal. Zero crossover distortion or phase errors. A large, light and strong paper composite diaphragm with powerful neodymium motor give neutral and transparent vocal rendition and a precise and vivid soundstage. Excelling at delivering accurate and nuanced midrange, this design is highly recommended where primarily acoustic music is appreciated in a small to medium, focused listening environment. Single driver full range, bass reflex (ported) enclosure Size: 18 litres (medium bookshelf / stand mount) Frequency response: 65hz -18khz (-3dB-0dB) Crossover- nil Impedance - 8 ohm nominal Lucie Model Two loudspeaker A traditional two-way compact loudspeaker with state of the art low distortion drivers from SB Acoustics and Scan-Speak. Extending linear frequency response above and below the Model One, the design physically time-aligns the acoustic energy from the low and high frequency drivers to maintain neutrality and phase coherence through the crossover range. Recommended and pre-set crossover slopes are 6dB per octave centred at a fairly high 4khz, meaning the low frequency driver is handling more midrange energy. First-order crossover slopes are chosen for their phase neutrality, and made possible by the smooth and extended response of both drivers outside their designated passband. Wider directivity and thus a broader sweetspot are delivered by the cloth dome tweeter and shallow cabinet wave guide. Qualitatively, these design choices deliver an accurate and neutral, yet non-fatiguing loudspeaker with excellent directivity. With more driver excursion and power handling on tap and a lower resonant frequency, this design is better suited to bass-heavy music without reinforcement via a subwoofer. Two-way full range, bass reflex (ported) enclosure Size: 16.5 litres (medium bookshelf / stand mount) Frequency response: 35hz -25khz (-3dB-0dB) Crossover- nil, active via DSP (two channels of amplification required for low frequency and high frequency), passive available as an option. Impedance - 4 ohm nominal Lucie Subwoofer Built to extend the frequency response of the bookshelf cabinets to the very lowest octaves. The sealed construction and large, low distortion driver give extremely linear bass performance, and the use of a Linkwitz Transform equalisation in the DSP system extends response well below the resonant frequency of the cabinet, giving exceptional performance for a fairly compact enclosure. Sealed enclosure, single 12" driver Size: 30 litres, floor standing Frequency response: 20hz - rolloff frequency (eg. 120hz) Built-in amplifier power - 500 watts, class A-B with linear power supply Material options available for loudspeakers: Baltic birch ply or narrow grain carbonised bamboo, solid laminated construction (no veneers used) Finishes: Natural oiled or Black Japan, others possible via consultation Cheers, Rick
  15. coffeemachinist

    Lucie Audio

    Just wanted to follow up and say thanks for coming last night to the several SNA members I spotted in the crowd. I thoroughly embraced the chance to waffle on about my gear for a while and spin some tunes. Hope you enjoyed! -Rick
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