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Snoopy8

What have I DONE??? I now have a stereo pair of mutant Stormtrooper helmets with gold bling!

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Posted (edited)

What have I DONE!???  I now have a stereo pair of mutant Stormtrooper helmets with gold bling!  :shocked: 

 

I moved from a setup with all these components and lots of cables

image.png.cc16095c5b8cea41ac344fec2461b7d0.png

 

to something which resembled a pair of mutant Stormtrooper helmets with gold bling !    

image.png.c2cd7674c1116417fc9279dd2309c81b.png

 

Otherwise known as Devialet Phantom Gold, they provided superb audio quality expected of a high end hifi system in a pair of components, each slightly larger than a soccer ball ! 

 

What convinced me? 

 

It started with a post from @andrewhollo (thank you Andrew!) who moved from the same brand active speakers to the Phantom Golds and I had a discussion with him.

 

The reviews of the Phantom Gold often praised the audio quality, particularly the bass but gave a thumbs down for the pricing.  However, most reviews were for a single speaker targeted at the wireless market.  However, this article changed things:

 

Steve Huff is well known in the photography world but has a passion for hifi. He swapped over to the Phantom Golds with improved AQ.  Steve mentioned that getting the phantoms on stands and positioning the speakers were critical.  It was backed up by Andrew’s description of a night and day difference between a single Gold and a stereo pair.

 

The audition at Klapp AV, as a single speaker (& typical of most retailers), confirmed the ability to deliver detail and bass. Despite the impressive bass, I still had some concerns about the whether it could deliver good enough bass in my difficult room.  Had to rely on reviews, and Andrew, for their feedback on stereo performance.

 

 

So How Do They Sound?

The Phantom Golds provide a superb musical sound stage with detail. Sound stage is open and airy, much better than previously.  Resolution of individual instruments has improved.  Details are all there. 

 

Regarding the bass,  there was no doubt that the Golds are better than old setup without subs.  The room is an open plan family room with no bass traps. The Golds lose to the highly optimised dual sub setup but that is not a surprise.  It took a long time to get to that state with a target curve that boosts bass by 4 dB, but tails off below 30 Hz.  However, the Golds matched the setup optimised with dual subs without a target curve.  Impressive indeed!  👍   Potentially, bass could be improved further by playing with the positioning within the room; this flexibility was not available in the previous setup.

 

WOW!  I was losing almost nothing with the bass and gained a better musical sound stage with the helmets!

 

Apps are not perfect

Not too sure about the Spark App which is not as good as BluOS. Am using BubbleUpnp app on to access the music on the NAS and that is working reasonably well. Please note that BubbleUpnp app is extremely sensitive to wifi dropouts and not recommended for rooms with poor wifi.  A move to Roon may be the next step.

 

Lessons learnt

  1. Don’t dismiss a system because it looks different. 
  2. Simplicity should be the driver
  3. Enjoy the music not the journey/thrill of upgrading and adding components which leads to increased complexity; see lesson 2

 

Conclusion

A stereo pair of Devialet Phantom Golds on stands delivers audio quality that can at least match many high end audio systems costing a lot more.  It may be a challenge to audition them as a stereo pair on stands, but until you do, do not dismiss them.  A stereo pair of Phantom Golds is a seriously good setup.

 

Can now spend more time listening, which is what this game should be about…

-------------

Before and after

image.png.71e73ebb99deb9e93d48c44bd8c4bddc.png

image.png.e4679f7ef59a91bdf26e8706d2710605.png

 

Components and cabling replaced

image.png.e1f45cf8f0288b8a519182aad14c9eaf.png

 

Edited by Snoopy8
Typos, fixed link, added photos

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I heard a pair of the entry level whites in stereo at Audio Junction in Newcastle and they blew me away, especially the bass and it wasn’t thump, thump but clear low and precise and this was after a demo on the 10000 Yamaha speakers.

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Congrats Snoop!  Its all a journey and one needs to appreciate it.  Are you keeping System 1 (as in the pic) as a backup?

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Posted (edited)

Well you did say the change would be a surprise and you were correct. .... :winky:

 

Looking forward to further reviews once you have spent more time with the set up.

 

cheers Terry

Edited by TerryO

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congrats ! quite a move :) definitely cleared out a lot of gear for them. great that happy with and to a wow level :) 

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44 minutes ago, shogo33 said:

Are you keeping System 1 (as in the pic) as a backup?

Many of those items are in the Classifieds!  No, the old system is going and I will save money once they sell.

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20 minutes ago, Snoopy8 said:

Many of those items are in the Classifieds!  No, the old system is going and I will save money once they sell.

is there a prima luna integrated in there by any chance :D 

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3 minutes ago, betty boop said:

is there a prima luna integrated in there by any chance :D 

Dialogue Premium Preamp, only 3 months old. :shocked:.   Out for evaluation.  

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10 minutes ago, Snoopy8 said:

Dialogue Premium Preamp, only 3 months old. :shocked:.   Out for evaluation.  

good stuff, have been hankering for the integrated for a while now :D so thought id ask just in case.... am sure will move it on soon enough  :) 

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I think a lot of people will be saying wow or what a surprise but I don’t think it’s a surprise once you have heard then, better sound quality with less components, win win.

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