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CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update (Read 10380 times)
Steve Deckert
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Re: CSP2 Review 1-10-07 Update
Reply #30 - 01/11/07 at 23:14:59
 
Parker,

I didn't catch it the first time, that you have a 6N2P (6H2N) in the preamp.  That tube looks exactly like the 6N1P and apparently one found its way into your preamp when we packed it.  I would guess this would aggravate the noise and hum issue quite a bit.

I look forward to getting the unit back so we can quickly fix the problems and send it back out.  Of course your 30 day trial will be reset once you have it back.

Thanks,

Steve
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #31 - 02/04/07 at 20:42:31
 
Okay sent the CSP2 back to Steve and it came back fixed. The hum is gone with headphones and on speakers it is far less noticable, it's barely audible when more than 3 feet way.

Just for referece I am still using the same gear to evaluate: Headphones are Senn HD650's (with easily 300hrs now). SS pre amp is Adcom, SS amp is Adcom, Bookshelf reference speaks play flat above 60hz and I know them very well (mental memory).

So when I first got the unit back I took it out of the 15 deg F' weather outside and immediately unpacked it and hooked it up. Within the first 30 seconds of turning on it sounded better then than it ever did when I had it before. Clearly something was wrong with it previously, likely a bad ground and the incorrect input tubes x3.

Noise level is now rediculously low and the power is very much there. As some of you might remember I reported that the CSP2 would clip really hard at anything over half volume and that it just didn't seem able to drive the 300ohm Senn's very well. That is NOT the case now, at 1/3 volume it is now louder than I would ever listen to. (so new 1/3 is like old 5/8's without clipping or hum or high pitch sqeal out of right channel).

I'm still using my cheap DVD player as a source and incredibly cheap interconnects because I didn't have the motivation to pull my nice new Rega Apollo out of its new custom AV unit I made. On my 2 channel system (Linkwitz Lab Orions and Thor) it is easy to hear that the Rega sounds better and more accurate than the cheap $15 pawn shop DVD player. I expect this will become apparent as well with the CSP2 and great headphones.

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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #32 - 02/04/07 at 20:55:19
 
I am currently breaking in the CSP2 with cycles of 22hrs on 2 hrs off with a different cd every day. I'll try this for a week or so and see if the sound changes.

I tried the same experiment again with the adcom ss pre running the left channel in to adcom SS amp and the CSP2 pre into adcom SS amp. I've used the mono out on the CSP2 and the mono on the adcom SS pre which I did not do before (because I didn't think of it). This makes the A/Bing much easier and more predicable in volume and content.

So far the above has revealed much of the same that I reported before. The CSP2 sounds a bit muffled and the highs sound kinda crunchy and the midbass is too pronouced. I noticed all these things before but the sound is less drastic now since the CSP2 was fixed. Overally it sounds okay but it doesn't sound as natural as the adcom ss pre. If the sound does not change with break in then the biggest problem will be the mid range bloating and the slight 60hz hum.

every member I've heard from can attest the sound will change with break in and all for the better. I'm leaving all the gear hooked up in my testing mode so I can evaluate it quickly and see if any changes happen as 100's of hours get put on the unit.

I haven't tried the CSP2 with the Linkwitz Lab Orion set up. I'll report back on that when I have time to play around with it.
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #33 - 02/06/07 at 02:02:32
 
The CSP2 works just fine now with the Linkwitz Lab system. Sounds fine, didn't really listen long enough to comment. The most noticible change is that the bass to too exaggerated, I would say to the tune of 6db easily.
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Lon
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #34 - 02/06/07 at 10:53:22
 
According to what I remember of Steve's breakin recommendations, I think you should power it up for about five hours, then leave it off for at least five hours, then repeat four or five times. . . .I believe the powering down (longer than two hours) is an important component.
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #35 - 02/06/07 at 23:44:14
 
Yep I recall that too in the instructions, but I was instructed that I could also just leave it on for a straight week and it wouldn't hurt anything.
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Steve Deckert
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #36 - 02/08/07 at 00:06:03
 
Parker,

Glad to hear things are improved now that you've got the CSP2 back in action.  Give it time...

Couple comments...  The CSP2 itself has ZERO hum and ZERO noise  at any volume level and at any distance from the speakers.  I can assure you of that.  If you're getting a tiny 60 Hz hum it is a ground loop or induced hum via your crappy cables that is at fault.

Also, I have found that 6N2P's actually work rather well in the CSP2, and ironically IN THAT circuit they have about 1/2 the gain of the 6N1P's.  The sound is also quite good.  

As far as bass bloat, I can also assure you that the CSP2 is DEAD FLAT and very extended in it's frequency response.  The Adcom gear by comparison is typically a bit lean (I know, I've owned several Adcom pieces including yours for use in my studio)  So the bloat you are hearing is what you really have in real life.  That simply means that your room/speakers are suffering from the typical room boom that everyone has to battle.  

I am confident as time goes on you will find it is by FAR the superior component in your system and as you systematically remove the handicaps you should no doubt come to the same conclusion as RFZQuest.

Your play by play reviews are excellent REAL WORLD feedback and should prove most helpful to anyone considering following in your footsteps!

Keep it coming!
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #37 - 02/08/07 at 03:59:36
 
First off. Thank You Steve!

There aren't many people turning out the kind of gear you do with anywhere near the same price or business philosophy.

I hope my intermittent reports do help other people with their descisions bc who knows. At first I was convinced that the CSP2 wouldn't work at all with a digital anologue processor, yet it does so I think people should know that incase they want to give it a go.

Since the unit has been fixed I didn't mean to say that the 60hz hum is a result of the CSP2 (although it might have read like that) it very well could be my amp, ground, cheap wires etc.

And my god if you could see how bad these cables are; they're like the one's that came with the first VCR you ever bought.

So if the "breaking in" of the CSP2 is the capacitors would that also mean that other SS products are likely to have a noticble burn in as well? Any exp with this in relation to the adcom gear we both have?
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-3-07 Update
Reply #38 - 02/09/07 at 18:42:05
 
Spent about two hours straight of critical listening with system as follows: out of Rega Apollo CD, into CSP2, out to Anologue Signal Processor, then to ATI 12 channel SS amp, then to 4 way Orion/Thor Linkwitz Lab speaks.

The CSP2 now has about 120hrs on it since the unit came back working perfectly (my guess is that the quarterback for UPS didn't warm up his throwing arm before launching the CSP2 into the collection bin).

Anyway... I put on the same music that I tried the other day when I briefly hooked up the CSP2 to test it again and see if it worked with the anolgoue signal processor (remember it didn't before the unit was fixed). My initial sense was that the bloated bass was less apparent. I don't know if that has to do with break in, but it seems to follow many of the things other people have said about break in.

So the highs sound better now, there is NO hum, the bass is cleaned up etc. As it stands right now I don't think the CSP2 is besting the Adcom 715 pre in terms of clarity but it is catching up.

Perhaps this belongs in the music forum but I keep coming back to Bjork being the best test material I can find which gives incredibly complex passages with a rediculous amount of range. Her album "Vespertine" is truly a treat on any good system; as is "Medulla" With Bjork it's like I can hear every little change they mastered in the recording, sometime it sounds like someone 2 ft away from you singing in your ear and on other tracks it sounds like she's singing in a church hall or something a bit echo-ish.

Anyone have similar rec's
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Parker
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Re: CSP2 Review NEW 2-14-07 Update
Reply #39 - 02/14/07 at 19:35:25
 
So I found a fairly large error with the way I set up my a/b listening between my normal ss pre and the CSP2. Although I had both pre's running mono to one speaker using the same ss amp I didn't have the signal mono out of the cdplayer. When the system was set up this way the sound out of the CSP2 was not as desirable (bloated bass, rolled off treb, a bit muffled) but when i set up the auditioning system properly (mono all the way through from cd to amp) the CSP2 sounded cleaner than the SS pre.

Now that I have the thing set up right I can't really comment on burn in or any of that stuff bc I don't have a reference for how it used to sound. Anyway the jist of it is that the CSP2 does sound perfectly flat, it has a lower noise floor than any other preamp I've used, and it is clearer than any pre amp I've used. By clear I mean that if you have music with multiple vocals at the same time it is easier to differentiate each vocal with the CSP2 than it is with the SS pre.

Remember that this is my first tube component. I wouldn't describe the sound as "tubey" in the traditional sense, but rather just a cleaner more pure sound.

My discovery of my previous error explains why reported the headphones sounding flat yet I couldn't get the bookshelf speak audition to sound flat.

Getting the bug and hating that I owe too much money in tax to not get more stuff.

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