Gear used for subjective Listening:

First are the front end components.

The transport is a CEC, TL5100Z belt drive player. It is isolated from vibrations by resting on a Dodd Audio Levitator (magnetic levitating platform).

Through a custom built data link it feeds into a Sonic Craft modded Lite Audio DAC-60. Standard modifications include upgraded caps to Black Gates with Gen. 3 polystyrene by-pass caps. Output caps have been upgraded to Sonicaps by-passed with a Sonicap Platinum. Further mods include upgrading the RCA's to Vampire Wire's best solid Copper units, rewiring it with Vampire Wire's continuos cast Copper wire, and a Bybee slipstream filter on the data input.

 

Both units are feed balanced power from a Dodd Audio balanced power supply. This unit is possibly the best in the industry.

All outputs are Hubble outlets and have been cryogenic treated.

One output is specifically for digital components and it is isolated from the rest of the outputs and receives additional filtering.

Power cords from the balanced power supply to the front end components are MPC-12. It uses heat treated, and crygenic treated 12 gauge Copper conductors.

The main power cord feeding the Dodd Balance power supply uses a counter rotating geometry of three runs of 14 gauge per leg. Wire is Vampire Wire continuos cast Copper. The ground leg runs through the center in a polyethylene tube. The ends are both Furutech's best and have been cryo treated as well. It is effectively a 9 gauge cable.

For the amp comparison, none of the amps were plugged into the balanced power supply. All were plugged into the wall socket.

All RCA cables have been custom built using Vampire Wire's continuous cast Copper in a noise cancelling, low capacitance, counter rotating Helix geometry. The dual runs of positive and negative have been wound on a polyethylene core. The ends are Vampire Wire solid Copper 800 CB with barrels removed.

These are a very low noise cable with a very high level of upper end resolution, very balance, and very clean. We make them for our own internal use only and they are not for sale.

As for a pre-amp, we were extremely fortunate to have been brought the brand new, first production version, battery powered tube pre-amp from Dodd Audio.

This was the first time for anyone to get to hear a finished production version of this new pre-amp. It's the best pre-amp that I have ever heard. The rest of the local guru's and several other industry professionals seam to agree as well.

This is a ground breaking new product. It is the first continuous operating battery powered tube pre-amp.

With dual sets of 24 volt batteries on hand. It runs exclusively on only one set by turning the on/off switch to either the left or right "ON" position. While one set of batteries are in use and completely disconnected from the smart charger, the other set is being charged.

Once battery power levels have dropped to 10% of full capacity, which takes about 12 hours, then the Green power "on light" changes from Green to Red. This means its time to go over to the pre-amp and turn it to the other "ON" position and to the fresh set of batteries. If you don't switch it after several minutes then it starts to beep at you like an alarm clock.

Batteries are rated for 4 to 5 years. There is a periodic rotation procedure to maximize the life of them.

Circuit design is very simple and only allows one capacitor in the signal path. These are the output coupling caps and are Sonicaps by-passed with Sonicap Platinum's.

It is completed wired with Continous caste Copper wire.

Outputs are Cardas except for the CD input and one output that is Vampire Wire's best solid Copper.

Volume controller is a motorized Alps Black Beauty.

Tubes include a pair of 6922's. Others can be used. Pick your flavor.

The top plate on the chassis and on the remote are Chrome. Side panels and remote housing come in your choice of finishes. This one was in Blood wood.

This thing is dead quite with no noise floor at all. Resolution, detail level, vocal range, sound stage, imaging, transparency, top to bottom is the best I have heard.

Not expensive either. $2,800. full retail. Get in line, but it will have to be behind me. I am already in line.

Speaker wire used was high purity Copper with 8 conductors of solid 20 gauge wire for a total of 14 gauge per leg. The conductors are independently jacketed and spiral wound around a crushed polypropylene core. One end had Vampire Wire solid Copper spades. The other end used Vampire Wire's best banana plugs.

Speakers used were a new open baffle prototype.

Information about this speaker can be seen in our forum at the Audio Circle.

http://www.audiocircle.com/circles/viewtopic.php?t=21620

http://www.audiocircle.com/circles/viewtopic.php?t=21999

http://www.audiocircle.com/circles/viewtopic.php?t=24018

These speakers have very high resolution and a very open sound that allowed differences to be noticed quickly and easily.

These speakers also have a powered 12" woofer that is side loaded and firing to the outside. It was turned off and unplugged during the comparisons.

I turned them on briefly near the end but forgot to plug the amps back in so they were really never turned on during the comparison.

The ported upper two and lower two woofers can hit -3db down responses in this room in the upper 40's. Most of the music that we listened to had little to no information below that point.

The room was well treated with four large diameter tube traps across the rear wall. Two are 8' tall and two are 4' tall. The rear wall was also treated heavy with overlapping 1" thick open cell foam panels. There were also some panels on the side walls. Windows are covered in drapes and the floor is covered in a thick shag carpet. The upper four corners of the room are also treated with triangular shaped wedges. Room size is 17' wide, 23' deep, and with 9' ceilings.

The pre-amp set on an amp stand up front and in clear view. Right behind it was a foam panel that was 2' tall and 6' wide that totally hid all the amps that were behind it. Comparisons were completely bind and the identity of all the amps were only revealed at the end of the day.

 

GR Research Inc.
910 North Jackson
Iowa Park, TX 76367
USA
940-592-3400