weeks with the NuForce amps...
above is a front and back view.
were here and at least deserve to be mentioned. Below is an account
of the time they spent here that may shed some light on what may
have contributed to their decision to withdraw from the event.
NuForce guys seamed pretty apprehensive about this whole deal
to begin with. They were very concerned with my system and whether
or not it would match up well with their amps. Then not wanting
to be left out, they decided to send amps.
first pair of amps arrived. They used what looked like WBT Nextgen
inputs and some plastic coated binding post.
hooking them up I found it difficult to tighten the binding post
very well. Tuning a slick plastic knob with little to hold on
to made getting a tight connection difficult. Move the cable and
they might slide out. Turning it was NOT like turning a finely
machined nut on a treaded bolt. It was like turning a plastic
nut on a threaded bolt.
under the binding post with the speaker cable didn't seam to work
as it left no room underneath for my heavy ended speaker cables
so they had to go down from the top and stick straight up in the
oriented post located at the outside edge of the amp would have
allowed the speaker wire to come straight off of it towards the
speakers. I wonder why this approuch was not used?
thing that bugged me about the layout of the mono-blocks was that
they were not mirror imaged pairs. I am used to mirror imaged
mono-blocks with the speaker outputs on the outside, power cord
in the middle and inputs on the inside. This way cables never
cross over or under each other and have no effect on one another.
With the NuForce arrangement there was going to be some criss-crossing
and there was definintly going to be a power cord passing either
over or under a speaker cable and an RCA.
was that the power on/off switch was on the back of the amps.
I don't care much for feeling around by the power cords to turn
it on or off. Most wives would like it even less.
all hooked up and then fired up. There is a huge noise floor.
It was an unbareable level of what sounded like White noise.
funny thing was that I could turn off the amp on the left and
the noise level of the amp on the right dropped in half. Then
I could turn on the amp on the left side with the amp on the right
side off and the amp on the left was quite. But then if I turned
the amp on the right back on there was a huge noise floor again,
from both amps.
both played, but there was no listening through all of this.
I call the folks at NuForce to report the problem. Jason and Casey
were easy to deal with and went right to work brain storming as
to what the problem might be.
suggested that there was a problem with my pre-amp. It had a ground
loop problem that would show up on their amps but not so bad with
others. Their amps are very good (or bad) about revealing system
said, no Casey, I don't think that is it.
says, yea I am pretty sure that your pre-amp is causing it.
confidently), No I am pretty sure that's not it.
Yea we have seen this problem before. I am pretty sure that your
pre-amp is passing the AC noise.
again) Casey, it's a battery powered pre-amp. There is no AC noise.
hmmm battery powered pre-amp. That could be a problem.
Well that could be a problem for you...
then am walked through a surgery process on the amps to correct
what they thought might be a grounding problem. I disconnected
ground wires from the balanced input, etc. To no avail the problem
was still there.
insides though. The speaker output wires leading off of the board
to the binding post looked like 18 gauge or smaller. This was
they graciously sent out a new pair and their new pre-amp too.
second pair worked. No White noise anyway. Inputs on this pair
was not the same WBT's as before. In fact the they didn't match
issue I had with these amps was the turn on noise. There was a
clear pop through the speakers when they were powered on and the
whinning zing of caps charging up. This same sound was also there
when turing them off.
told guys from NuForce about the turn on noise. They said there
shouldn't be any turn on noise. But the first page of the manuaul,
that goes out with the amps, stated that there could be some turn
on noise and that it would not damage your speakers.
was asked for several times on the amps but I felt it best to
remain neutral and not form or relay my personal thoughts. I did
mention though that they sounded better here than any of the other
times that I had heard them.
there was their pre-amp. They wanted me to use their new pre-amp
as the reference pre-amp for the event.
also had here the Superphon pre-amp and the Dodd Audio prototype
battery powered tube pre-amp. Both were superb pre-amps.
it wasn't a pre-amp comparison I felt that I could at least give
them some feedback on it and let them know if I would use it for
keep my personal thoughts to myself here, but there was no way
I could use it for the event. It was not even close to being in
the same ball park as the other two that were here.
news may have added to their worries. They then decided it would
be best to pull out of the event.
really wanted to approve of the sound before allowing anyone to
hear the amps. They stated in an e-mail " ...if we can't
tune the Ref 9 in your system to our satisfaction, we'll have
to back out of the audition." So they did. As bad as withdrawing
may look, I think it might have been the best thing for them.
Park, TX 76367