Author Topic: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)  (Read 46120 times)

Offline Carlman

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2007, 02:25:39 PM »
Others are using terms like "aggressive, edgy, ruthlessly revealing" so I am at least not alone in my experience as these break in. To be fair-it sounds like some other folks are not experiencing such a hyped upper mid or treble and are extremely pleased.

I'm right there with you, dog.  Waiting for the 'ahhhh' moment...  I've been comparing IC's for 3 days now... And I've decided to keep the Grover's playing nonstop for 24 more hours before re-visiting so they get what they need.

Currently, the Reality Cables, Audience, and JPS labs sc3's are all sounding very good, with slightly different characters.... I could live with any of the 3.  The Grover white cables are a little clinical compared to the slightly romanticized sound of these other 3.... The graphites need break-in.

-C
I really enjoy listening to music.

Offline djbnh

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2007, 03:30:18 PM »
My impressions to follow. Two pairs of Grover ICs with over 72 continuous hours of burn-in. My system, which used to be slightly to the cooler side, has vintage speakers and more current gear, in a dedicated listening room:

Odyssey Extreme Mono amps, VH cryoed Audio Flavor 4 PCs
Odyssey Tempest preamp, VH Audio cryoed Flavor 2 PC
Jolida JD-100 cdp, VH Audio cryoed Flavor 1 PC, Sylvania Gold Label JHS 5751WA tubes
Rega P25 with Denon DL103R cart, Pete Riggle VTAF
Tweaked Polk SDA 1C speakers with the improved RD1094-1 silk tweeters, a custom built A1 inter-speaker IC/interface, Groneberg Quattro speaker cables
Almost all components sit on heavy granite slabs, including the speakers. Exception is the TT, which rests on cones on marble on another set of cones on A.R.T. Q-dampers. Also have a piece of granite on the top of the JD-100.
Dedicated 20A lines: two duplexes handle the amps, pre, and TT. One duplex for the cdp.
All component (RCA, RCA connectors, PC male prongs, IEC prongs) are treated with Walker SST, including tube pins and Polk speaker external and internal connections. No SST yet on the Grover ICs.

The genres I've listened to include classical, alternative, rock, blues, opera, jazz. Lots of classical during the burn-in period.

Finding: Excellent detail retrieval across the board.  Very good to excellent soundstage width, very good height, seems to have a bit less depth at the moment - soundstage is slightly pushed forward. Very good to excellent imaging, can pick out instrument location easily. SDA effect now on some material is past mindblowing, for example, try listening to Kruder Dorfmeister - The K&D Sessions; I put this to the excellent imaging and detail.

Haven't run too much of the TT yet, so don't want to do any reporting in that area outside of that I've liked what I've heard so far.

I know the Jolida isn't top of the line in cdps, yet I find it's easy to listen to and the Sylvanias make quite a bit of difference in giving a palpable 3D presentation and some midrange lushness. I think perhaps the player, the tubes, and my choice of PCs may be responsible partly for me not hearing a hot top end as some have reported. Is the top more present than before? Absolutely. Is this a negative? In my system with my gear to my ears - absolutely not. I note the bottom is more present than before, and I thought I previously had plenty of that; bottom end is decidedly more tuneful and impactful than it was previously. The mids seem well presented and have gobs of detail, well, there's tons of detail across the spectrum. Previously my system seemed to present female voices somewhat better than male voices, but now they each present equally well and better than before. Not sure why the male voices now are presenting as well as the female voices...

At this point in time, these ICs work more than nicely for me, and I'm hoping it stays that way. LKdog said, "They are quite stunning in their clarity." I'm finding this and more to be true. I'm sure the results of others will be system and preference dependent, as always YMMV.


 
“If I discover within myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”   C.S. Lewis

LKdog

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2007, 06:51:10 PM »
I have received some helpful consultation on my break in routine.
I think leaving my system running at very low volumes is not sending much current through the new wire. :duh

Will check back in a couple days after giving them a better workout. :rofl:

Thanks Rich for the advice.  :D

Offline richidoo

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #18 on: August 27, 2007, 07:16:02 PM »
I hope it is correct  :shock:  ;)   That's just what I do, seems to work with grover wires anyway.

Carl you have the new JPS Superconductor "Q," not the SC3. It is cheaper, but I don't know how much.

jrebman

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #19 on: August 27, 2007, 08:11:34 PM »
  You really don't even need your amp on at all for breaking in ICs.  The input impedance of the amp stays more or less constant and determines the amount of current that will be pulled through the IC.  The fastest way to pull maximum current through an IC is to take a female RCA and solder a 10k resistor between the center pin and ground, then plug the IC load end into it and put your CD player or squeezebox on repeat using a CD with a good range of frequencies and dynamics.

Most amps these days are 100k input impedance, so 10k will draw 10 times the current -- but don't go below 10k as you can overdo it as well.

Now that I'm saying this I'm reminding myself that I really need to do this myself and make a couple of pairs -- one for squeezebox break-in,  and another for ICs.

A cable burner could also help, but even if you have one, I still think probably 80% of what goes through the IC should be real music.  Same goes for break-in disks like XLO, etc.

HTH,

Jim

LKdog

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #20 on: August 27, 2007, 10:50:17 PM »
Thanks guys for the tips. Will give it more time and check back later this week.  :)

LKdog

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #21 on: August 29, 2007, 10:43:35 PM »
Quick update.
These now have 120 hours on them.
Have done a few things suggested to settle them in.
They are probably about what they are going to be.

Have to say I am torn.
In many ways the resolution/detail/imaging/clarity in the midrange on down is fantastic-the best my system has ever sounded. Following basslines is a new revelation with these IC's.
Sort of the old cliche of a "veil has been lifted" thing.

From upper midrange on up they are still a little too hot for my liking.
Great clarity but on the borderline and over the line of edgy or clinical at times still.
Depends upon the recording, of course, but brighter recording mastering or those using compression to make a hotter sound are too hot IMO with these IC's. I do some Pro Audio DAW mixing and recording for fun in another setup and a thought I have had is that these cables would be a recording engineer's dream as they are so revealing. Maybe why Steve Hoffman allegedly likes the Grover sound? Just guessing.

These impressions are in my system that leaned slightly toward being warm and relaxed before, especially after I added the Alan Maher Power Enhancer filters to my dedicated circuit.

I am using Amperex 7316 input tubes in my line stage which are known for their tremendous clarity.
Maybe the synergy of these IC's with the ultra clear 7316's is too much of a good thing.
I do have some CBS-Hytron 5814wa's I may try which are my other favorite tube for my preamp line stage. That tube is warmer than the Amperex and rounder-but still pretty resolving and punchy.

Overall, I would have to say these are exciting IC's with an extraordinary clarity.
Exciting and engaging-maybe a bit too much so for some.

Not sure whether they will work out for sure with me and that I will keep them, but these are certainly quite special and impressive nonetheless.


Offline djbnh

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #22 on: August 30, 2007, 11:03:09 AM »
Applied Walker SST to the Grover ICs last night before retiring, and finally got a chance to do some listening this afternoon. All my favorable impressions of the ICs remain. Additionally, the soundstage has regained its depth, imaging and detail have both slightly improved as well. Good stuff all around.
“If I discover within myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”   C.S. Lewis

jrebman

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #23 on: August 30, 2007, 11:24:37 AM »
Good to know.  I'll try it when my system is moved to it's new home.

My Nordost dealer friend said that I should really let her cook these on the Nordost Vidar cable cooker.  She says it's the most impressive cable cooker she's ever used -- apparently can make noticeable improvements in even well seasoned cables.

While renovations are happening here, I'm going to give her all my ICs and the Reality SCs to cook -- each will get 2 4-day cycles, and she says that I will easily hear a positive, and distinct improvement.

I'm somewhat skeptical as to how much change they will show, but I'm willing to be proven wrong.  This is one of those no-brainers -- can't hurt anything, and doesn't cost anything to try.

As I said though, things are sounding pretty decent for a fairly new system right now, and do really appear to be improving.

-- Jim

Offline mboldda1

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #24 on: August 30, 2007, 01:20:25 PM »
what do these grover-g's look like?  i just bought a pair of white grovers in june or july and he had just updated them, have they been changed again?  i think the ones i have are like the ones from the second group buy when grover said he would upgrade the ones from the first group buy.

HELP...confussed.
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Offline richidoo

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #25 on: August 30, 2007, 05:25:06 PM »
This is RCA ICs from the 2nd group buy, just shipped last week.


First GB was all white. Maybe upgrading to latest spec stays all white and just updates the technical spec. The upgrade was free, so I wouldn't expect him to issue all new cables if he could avoid it. Did you notice a difference when you got yours upgraded?



Offline mboldda1

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #26 on: August 30, 2007, 05:37:38 PM »
mine are white but they do say grover s on them.  i didn't have mine upgraded, they came new from grover.
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Offline Carlman

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #27 on: August 30, 2007, 06:00:11 PM »
I actually prefer the all white version, which is the previous latest version. ;)
The new 'graphite' colored ones are good too, just a little too detailed for me.  I like the 2000-foot view... ;)  haha..

Seriously, the history that I am aware and my opinion on the sound signatures:
1 Grover sent us demo pairs of white Grover's with black shrink tube; sounded good but seemed a little less pronounced in the mids
2 By the time the first group by was organized, Grover had already upgraded them to have a little more midrange warmth or detail but didn't lose any highs or lows... So, that's what everyone got.
3 AN organized a tour for 'round 2' group buy...
4 By the time the order went in for round 2, Grover had upgraded the cables again to the graphite version, which have the same lows and mids but seem to have more detail in the highs.

That's what I've seen.  I would say there is a family resemblance of the various upgraded cables for sure but if I could make a suggestion, I'd split the whites and graphites into 2 different 'flavors' and sell both. 

-C

P.S. Nice 'tography, Rich. :)
« Last Edit: August 30, 2007, 06:05:06 PM by Carlman »
I really enjoy listening to music.

LKdog

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #28 on: August 30, 2007, 07:04:53 PM »
Carlman-

Are the Grover whites from the first group buy a little more forgiving in the treble range in your opinion?

-Tony

Offline Carlman

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Re: New Grover IC impressions (August 2007 graphite version)
« Reply #29 on: August 30, 2007, 07:10:21 PM »
Carlman-

Are the Grover whites from the first group buy a little more forgiving in the treble range in your opinion?

-Tony

Yes, I think it's the additional (or warmer?) midrange makes the highs seem 'sweeter' to me on the white/white Grover's... Not sure why exactly, this is just a theory.

-C
I really enjoy listening to music.