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Author Topic: Musical Surroundings Nova Phenomenon phono stage  (Read 5097 times)
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bacobits
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« on: June 05, 2010, 07:04:06 PM »

I sold my excellent Mini Max Phono. It  sounded better with the Vista i34 I was using.
Again, the Pathos is a bit of a strange beast with what you match it with.
I have now changed my complete system for this amp.
   
Purchased the battery operated Nova Phenomena.
More Transistors in the system and very adjustable to cartridges, this is what I was after.
It sounds well, nice, very nice when you can zero in on the correct cartridge settings.
The Nova will break in around 50 hours.
 
I was going to go for the RS Nighthawk everybody was going gaga over at AC, but since the price went up from the intro price of $650 to like $835 shipped to me, I figured it was not worth the up-charge in my opinion. It has not been reviewed yet but pending in Six Moons. I passed on it.

The Nova Phenomena has numerous reviews and Editors Choice recommendations the last three years so I went for it. No regrets at all.

More comments as she breaks in.
All my cables will be "cooked" soon too.



   


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richidoo
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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2010, 04:06:34 AM »

Congrats Den! You are really going for it: A brand new system!
http://www.musicalsurroundings.com/mslsur.html



Review: http://www.audiophilia.com/wp/?p=4017
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bacobits
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« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2010, 09:42:54 AM »

You can tell Rich is a show and tell guy.
I like picts too.

D

http://www.dagogo.com/View-Article.asp?hArticle=210

http://www.stereotimes.com/acc111807.shtml
« Last Edit: June 06, 2010, 09:46:16 AM by bacobits » Logged
richidoo
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« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2010, 10:42:52 AM »

Thanks Den. This is the pic I was looking for, showing all those DIP switches for config:

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bacobits
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« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2010, 11:47:57 AM »

Just a comment on the importance of match settings on MC cartridges .
When I was running the EE Mini Max I was using the 100 ohm, MC setting mainly for the extra gain of the built-in step up. The Dynavector 10X5 likes to see according to specs >1000 ohms. When I had my sub I was wondering why the room was getting overloaded at a certain volume and crossover setting causing the woofer to flutter and make the needle jump all over. It wasn't always the room overload the cartridge was loaded too low at 100 ohms which increased the bass considerably losing highs and air. On single driver speakers you do not necessarily notice the loss of these highs unless you do a comparison side by side to something else.

This is my "duh" moment.

Now with things loaded at 2000 ohms and closer to recommended >1000 this cartridge sounds faster and more balanced top to bottom. Better depth and layering separation I call it.
It is much better than the average 47K loading most High output MC's are supposed to work at. The gain is now set at 52.7 and it is just right. That has to do with the sensitivity of the Pre input signal. In this case he Pathos built in line pre.
This is the difference of having these adjustments. My Black Cube SE had these settings I should have known better. I will not purchase a Phono Pre again without any adjustments. Most tube phono pre's do not provide this until you go up in $$$$. Then again, many designers don't agree with the dip switches being in the signal path. It can be done right.

D


 
« Last Edit: June 06, 2010, 11:52:51 AM by bacobits » Logged
richidoo
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« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2010, 01:30:59 PM »

I think a quality switch is a small price to pay for loading the coil correctly, especially since this is the original source of the music. Any error creating the signal can't be fixed later.
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« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2010, 05:59:05 AM »

  Looking good man. Excellent product. Oh yes the correct load makes all the difference. However the recommended load is not always the most affective. Buy loading up or down say 100ohms or 47K ohms will produce a different character. The higher the brighter the lower a tamed top end. so somewhere in the middle is the sweet spot. The reccommended setting is just that. a starting point.
  Once broken-in play around with the settings. Listen to everyone you just may be surprised as to your findings. let us know. Have fun trying.

charles
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bacobits
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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2010, 05:28:53 AM »

Charles,
Ooo, your correct. Mama's gone to a conference till Wed.
I was up to 2am crankin' and futzing with settings.
I'm set at 50,000 Ohms now with the gain up to 56 db, it is
how shall I say? Superb! My EE at 47,000 ohms setting never sounded like this.
The Nova is a nice piece.

Synergy, Synergy. ya gotta have synergy,
I guess I'm getting it.

D
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Carlman
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« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2010, 05:43:08 AM »

Cool.. just let us know what the character differences are... (that way I can just modify my EE to have the same resistance/gain settings since I have the same cart.) Wink
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bacobits
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« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2010, 07:50:02 AM »

I was complaining about the gain on the EE at 47K which is at 42db.
I liked the gain on the MC setting with the built in step up at 100 ohms and that was 57db.
At that 100 ohm setting it was too low impedance for the 10X5 and things got muddy and way too bass heavy. I didn't notice it so much because my ears are getting old and I was too much into Digital.
Again, single driver speakers which I have had longer than 5 years don't show all this up readily until you compare them to full rangers. Yikes, what a difference,

So Carl.....I would just jack the gain on the EE at the MM setting of 47K, from 42 dB gain to 57db gain. That is if it will sound better with your particular amp. You seem now to be not bothered by it.
Bill O, also had someone local to him to mod the EE in the past.

I don't like modding equipment because of cost mostly, and resale too. You will never get it back on the high priced stuff. But I don't, think that mod just increasing the gain would be too costly.
I have had my EE for 5 years so that "nervosa" set in and there needed to be a change with the Pathos and that was to go to a Pre that was highly adjustable and easy doing it.

D
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BobM
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« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2010, 08:24:59 AM »

Don't forget that the VTA/SRA will also change the character of the top end as well as the loading. Sometimes you could tweak one more open and the other more closed to get the best sound.

Although, ideally the VTA/SRA should be set appropriately for the cartridge and stylus type so that the tinkly things are sharp and distinct and open and balanced with the boomy things.
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bacobits
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« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2010, 09:13:07 PM »

Yes, but on a Rega P5 with an RB 700 it is set right now at 2 X 2MM shims.
It looks pretty much perfect at 92 degrees in the groove, what it is supposed to be.
That only leaves VTF (set 1.9) and anti-skate just barely at 1 but you can actually hear it.

D
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Carlman
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« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2010, 04:18:26 AM »

I have no intention of changing anything in my system... so an inexpensive mod is the way to go for me.  I'll try to hear the differences between the MC and MM settings on the EE.. It did seem to sound better on the MC setting with the extra gain but it was louder.. and louder is always better. Wink 

I haven't had as much time to listen lately but when I do, I look forward to playing around with the phono pre.. I like it already so getting a little more out of it would be great.

-C
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bacobits
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« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2010, 06:30:09 AM »

Quote
I have no intention of changing anything in my system...

HA! I didn't either. The Pathos started it all.
No regrets, but almost at the beginning.

D
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