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Need help with a decision... (Read 1325 times)
deucekazoo
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Need help with a decision...
09/18/13 at 18:10:47
 
Right now I have two SE84CS in mono driving my HR-1s. Looking at the new TorriIV and all the threads about it is making me wonder. So this is where I need some help. the Torii IV looks beautiful. It probalby sounds as great as it looks. The decision is to buy one or keep the Se84CSs. I don't think I need the power of the Torii. Right now the speakers get loud and that's with the volume knob on the CSP at 12 in my small room. So to the sound quality between the two amps. Which one is better? I want to have the SE84CSs upgraded with the new Jupiter caps but if the Torii sounds better then I would save that money, sell the SE84CSs and get the Torii. What do you guys think? I could only afford one option. Thanks for any help.
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Lon
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #1 - 09/18/13 at 19:08:46
 
It's just my opinion, but I spent a bit of time this year with a hot rodded Zen C amp and the HR-1s and if you're getting enough power, stick with what you have, the sound was great with one, just not quite enough power. I love the Toriis because I needed the power in my last home and they're a bit forgivngi in comparison (and i need that). But if you love the sound you have, stay put!
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will
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #2 - 09/18/13 at 19:26:49
 
Hopefully Steve will respond to this, being the only one who can with no MkIVs out yet. I do recall Steve saying once that he has taken time to listen to all of his amps in succession, and in this scenario, each one he finds to be better than the last, when the last was the best, and finally back to the beginning, it is "the best" again...sort of a perpetual wheel of the best.

So at least from this we can rest assured that from the designer's view, they all have very good qualities individually, while at the same time, the contrasts from the different synergistically refined designs are exciting!

Lon's point is well taken. However, I suspect my quest and his are different enough that my Torii, the way I have it set up, and my HR1s, the way I have modded them...it is pretty sure that I have a notably more detailed, and probably less forgiving sound. But within this, I am also going for a musicality and "forgiveness" that comfortably "awakens" my notably smaller collection of recordings. This is one of the great things of the Torii for me...it is very adjustable with 5 tube sets along with its knob and its switch controls.

I auditioned a Rachel, which is pretty different from the Zens with the EL34s, and a bit less power than your monos together. What I found...I was first very impressed at the striking family resemblance between the Rachel and my MKIII Torii. Also, I loved both. And finally, I preferred qualities of each.

Then I put in the CSP3. I loved what it did for the Rachel (and the Torii) in my system through the HR-1s...it added beautiful body and harmonic resolution that was different and compelling compared to the Rachel alone...not better in terms of harmonic information...compellingly different. But finally, in my room, I was still pushing the Rachel into distortion on more demanding material.

Then when I put back in the MkIII, I did not like it as well for a while...just a little cool and hard by comparison...but the power was the catcher...it so effortlessly pushed the HR-1 drivers giving a more authentic and visceral representation of complex and demanding material especially. In the end, with a little tube play and adjustment, I liked the Torii better.

I have noticed this "driver push" thing every time I have tried a low power amp with these speakers. They are great sounding low power, but with more push, they have an indescribable something that is perhaps subtle on some levels, but really awesome.

That said, if the HR-1s sounded exactly the same as they did with the Rachel, but played louder (maybe several dB more efficient) I probably would have kept the Rachel as a second amp, as I did like it better TOO. I got that thing Steve was talking about, and the benefit of diversity is exciting to the listening body/mind. But I was looking for a second amp and you aren't!

With your system being so good as is, it is hard...For me, your amps might have been just enough, which may have kept me off the MkIV list. The MKIV catchers for me though were these: I really love my MkIII, though it has been a bit demanding at times and the MkIV is going to be "tamer" yet very powerful with bass....the MkIV is Steve's "new baby" integrating all he knows and loves about hearing music at this power level.... also the driver push thing (aside from volume) with the HR-1s... the Torri flexibility with so many tubes and adjustments, and finally, the amp signatures creating in effect two amps depending on using EL34s or KT66...

Some thoughts...but I wish I had tried your setup! I was reluctantly planning on two Rachels bridged to mono if I had too little power with one without buying more efficient speakers. But then came the MkIV mid process and it seems a shoe in for me.
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« Last Edit: 09/18/13 at 19:32:22 by will »  

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will
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #3 - 09/18/13 at 19:37:49
 
All that said.......Just now, putting on Vito Patternoster playing Bach solo cello...the MkIII with the CSP3 and HR-1s...If I did not "need" another amp....after years of Torii tweaking and refinement of my system and room...from what I am hearing, I can't imagine needing or wanting better sound than this!
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« Last Edit: 09/18/13 at 19:38:40 by will »  

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deucekazoo
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #4 - 09/19/13 at 14:00:03
 
Guys thanks for your opinions.
The sound I have right now is great. I have perfect balance from top to bottom with the WO32s filling in the bottom, bottom nicely. The room is small so don't need the extra power. It was one of those moments seeing the Torii, seeing the tubes glow, and thinking to my self, I need that.  I think I am going to stick with what I have and upgrade the caps following my original plan. From reading other threads the caps should bring these amps to another level. It would be nice to hear from Steve and see what he thinks about the sound quality between the two. Well at least I will be able to hear the Torii at the fest, but its not in my room so it will be hard to judge.
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Lon
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #5 - 09/19/13 at 14:47:26
 
Cool dk. There's always room for change in the future. Who knows, maybe you'll one day order a Torii Mk V. Wink

will, yes, I have been getting such great sound out of both systems that I don't feel the need to change amplification or other components, but going to concentrate on finer details like cabling and isolation. I'm so happy with my Torii Mk IIIs that I just don't want to change. Just like my motorcycle, six years now of excellent service,  they keep trying to tempt me into a new model but I love what I have.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #6 - 09/19/13 at 16:02:55
 
**cough**roomtreatment**cough**   Grin
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Auguie
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #7 - 09/19/13 at 16:37:41
 
Well...here's my $.02 worth.

I have a pair of SE84CS M monos (2 WPC) driving a pair of HDT's, also in a small room.  I too am feeling the need for more power, but since I added a First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I pre, I'm not so sure.  This system has always given me all the loudness I want in my room, but I felt it needed more "oomph".  I got a lot of that with the pre, but I still wonder if something like the Rachel would give me more.  (So many decisions...so little time [and $$$])

Anyway, I hope to hear the Rachel with the HDT's at Decfest this year.  Maybe hearing this setup (room difference noted) will convince me that what I have is all I need, or that I need to find some cash to buy the Rachel!!! Grin  We'll see in a few weeks.

Dan
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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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will
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #8 - 09/19/13 at 18:08:38
 
You guys are lucky...going to Decfest. Though it will be different in that room, you will get a good sense of the basic differences of the amps, I am sure.

DK, sounds like you have things going just fine! I did not realize you had the WO32s. I bet your sound is amazing. The Beeswax caps are really good in my opinion...very open and clear, but as Steve said "organic." They sound so right and do so without any sense of even hearing them... a great sign to me!


Auguie. I am pretty sure you have more power than the Rachel with the mono 84s. If I am not mistaken, those are supposed to put out about 8 watts bridged and the Rachel about 6. Am I on track here? They will have different signatures though that you will get to hear soon at the Fest.

The pre makes sense. I was blown away at the synergy the CSP3 had with the Rachel... notably increased body and weight with a lovely translucent warmth, and all with a very linear seeming even order harmonics hit causing great, open resolution throughout the spectrum. Beautiful. Check it out at Decfest.

The other thing that occurs to me is this mid-bass module: http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/mbm-12mk2.html

It has gotten good praise on these forums (I think the thread had weight and body in the title) and it makes sense to me... Supplement the mid bass for weight and body....and fairly inexpensively. If it blends well with your HDTs, it would very likely give notable oomph to the sound!


Lon, I totally get it. I love my MkIII sound...

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« Last Edit: 09/19/13 at 18:12:49 by will »  

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Lonely Raven
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #9 - 09/19/13 at 18:34:45
 
Steve's room is mildly treated, has that doorway between the speakers, and has that nice vaulted ceiling, so it helps keep the room out of the way of the amps.

If only we all had dedicated listening rooms!
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deucekazoo
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #10 - 09/19/13 at 18:44:09
 
Raven,
I have some Ricola I could bring to the fest for your cough.  ;D

I probably need some room trearment and have been looking into it. My listening room is prety much my bedroom. The whole back wall is a closet that is open at all times. So I think the clothes absorb the sound just like room treatment. I do think I need something in the front behind the sepakers.

Will,
The WO32s are great. They just fill in the bottom. You don't even know they are on until you turn them off. Then you think, where did the base go.
Also the true monos are only 2 watts. My CSs are the stereo amps that I am running as monos. So they are 6 watts.
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« Last Edit: 09/19/13 at 18:44:41 by deucekazoo »  
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will
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #11 - 09/19/13 at 20:26:39
 
DK, Sounds like the subs sound just right! And thanks for the clarification on the different 84s power output.
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Auguie
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #12 - 09/21/13 at 15:31:19
 
Will...DK is correct.  The mono's I have are the original mono's Steve made in the CS version, only 2wpc.  Even so, with the HDT's, I have a very even, liquid, and dynamic presentation.  I've thought about adding a sub, but the new pre seems to be filling out the bass in my room.  I have at least 100 more hours to burn in the pre, and I'm hoping the bass will continue to improve.  If I get a chance to hear the Rachel, I'll know if the extra wpc will add to the overall presentation.  We'll see/hear in a few weeks.

Dan
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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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will
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #13 - 09/21/13 at 18:54:19
 
Thanks Dan. Yes I have to admit, I never got a handle on all those letters with the various 84s until now. It is great your pre is pulling things together. I am impressed with what the CSP3 brings to the Torii MKIII in similar sounding ways, and the Torii really was not needing weight and body. I like the way the CSP3 brings these and everything else to the Torii though...that SRPP circuit through the output tubes is impressive. In my system/room, it seems to bring weight and body within a complete frequency range of refined resolution.
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jameskk
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Re: Need help with a decision...
Reply #14 - 09/23/13 at 13:41:11
 
I feel I must comment on this . I own 4 zens in different vintages a torii mkiii a csp2+ and a zcd200i c d player which I just installed Jupiter caps into , 5 volts out BTW. I don't own any decware speakers however, most of the time my Torii is in it's pelican case,for reasons I cant explain . It's just that the superzen and all zens have SOMETHING that is just  intoxicating. Even my friend who has a toriimkiii and had a zen said he's going to get another zen or racheal . And again im in a small room 9x13 and my speakers are very efficient, what ever you do good luck......... I want to ad that the zcd200i add so much to the system gain wise that I only have to turn the amp to 9 oclock to get as much output as i'll EVER need. Most cd players are only 2volts out
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« Last Edit: 09/23/13 at 13:54:03 by jameskk »  
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