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Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments? (Read 186472 times)
Archie
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Posts: 1139
Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #550 - 09/23/18 at 02:16:30
 
I've been rereading what Steve wrote in this thread about the big Nichicon caps that he used in the mods. †He mentions that they are 4700uF 450 VDC 85 C caps. †What he used in mine though are 3300 uF 500 VDC 85 C caps. †I have no idea what difference the smaller cap makes. †I don't see where Steve said anything about downsizing in this thread. †I can't read the part number of my caps so I am sort of guessing here. †The caps he used are still more than 50% more capacity than my Red Malory's (2000 uF).



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Technics 1200G TT w/ Ortofon Jubilee MC cart
ZMC1
ZP3
ZR2
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
HR1s
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #551 - 09/24/18 at 01:55:05
 

Yes I have been evaluating several caps in the NX range and found 4700uf is larger than I wanted to go.  I have found the range so far between 3300 to 3900 uf to be more desirable. So the cap values I will be using for the mod will be anything in this window.

Steve
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Archie
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #552 - 09/24/18 at 02:08:06
 
After reading about the caps that blew up the ZMA, I don't mind having a smaller bomb on the shelf.   Grin
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Technics 1200G TT w/ Ortofon Jubilee MC cart
ZMC1
ZP3
ZR2
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
HR1s
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Isolation platforms under everything.
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bandrade
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Posts: 23
Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #553 - 09/24/18 at 04:09:02
 
Experience exchange from a guy (me) that has installed the 4700 uF caps. I agree with Steve that 3300 to 3900 uF is the optimum value for those caps to keep things nice and simple (KISS principle) while improving matters. As mentioned I have installed 4700 uF Mundorf Mlytic's in my ZMA along with a whole bunch of bypass caps and as a result had to install 330K ohm bleeder resistors to compensate for the extra stored energy which needs to be dissipated when the amp is powered off. Without these bleeder resistors the mA meters bounce wildly on powering the ZMA off. When the power is turned off the OA3 conduction oscillates as the stored voltage (in the large caps) is dropping and so current drawn increases to compensate. For me the lower ESR and lower drawdown in voltage (therefore less supply power ripple) while the ZMA is operating and the resultant upgrade in sound and background provided by this make and size of caps is worth not following the KISS principle in this case. As a manufacturer Steve is prudent to provide a margin of safety not to drive his equipment to the higher limit as there is a possibility that components may fail within the lifetime warranty. I am willing to take this chance for performances sake.
Comments about the caps blowing up: If the caps installed are of the right voltage the caps should not blow up. I believe Steve when he mentioned about the cap that blew up in his workshop was one rated lower. I found this experience feedback from Steve very helpful and so am making doubly sure that the caps I install have a voltage that is high enough. There are amps and power conditioners with 20 times or more than the capacity in the ZMA in the Farad range let alone micro-Farads that we are talking about. I just bought a iFi Pro iDSD DAC that has 6.8 Farad !!! capacitors.
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #554 - 09/24/18 at 11:18:01
 
Steve, are the 3300 to 3900 also more readily available? I'm hoping so.

I'm waffling between the ZMA 25th mod or purchasing the Torii JR 25th.
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Archie
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #555 - 09/24/18 at 16:44:16
 
Quote:
Comments about the caps blowing up: If the caps installed are of the right voltage the caps should not blow up. I believe Steve when he mentioned about the cap that blew up in his workshop was one rated lower.


Yeah, I got that, hence the † Grin † † † †

Wink
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #556 - 09/27/18 at 20:21:03
 
Quote:
I'm waffling between the ZMA 25th mod or purchasing the Torii JR 25th.


You, waffling in a decision? No!! † Wink


Quote:
Steve, are the 3300 to 3900 also more readily available? I'm hoping so.



I've seen 3300uf, 3700uf, 3900uf, and 4700uf caps, but in the 450v and larger range...just aren't really that common in general. Then make them low ESR for our audiophile needs, and the number gets even smaller.

Caps in this size are used for inverters, starting caps for motors, that kind of stuff. We have very few that are made for our needs unfortunately - so there are really long wait times for the caps across the board. Unless you want to chance it with some Chinese caps of Alibaba
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #557 - 09/27/18 at 20:49:03
 
Grin Grin
Guilty as charged, LR.
It will cost me twice as much (+?) to witness the Torii JR jacked/25th. Or, do I do my ZMA? †.....I don't know........ .
I'm enjoying GL Cryo'd KT88's right now before the Viking's game at 7:20 pm....saying to myself........no need...this is really - really good!

Yeah, audiophile needs.....a good thing if it takes Steve 4 to 6 months to get Caps.....decisions - decisions....my(our)/good problem to have....Torii JR 25th or the more affordable ZMA .....cost!

....for those lurking (in which is a good thing - all good)....this is not Audiophilia Nervosa
https://www.stereophile.com/content/audiophilia-nervosa-1

....when Steve/Decware does Enhancements....it matter's. ....for me personally, it is between touching or not touching my perfect** ZMA (in my System/Kabling-YMMV).....or getting or not getting the Torii JR 25th. †....I think that made sense...... .


**perfect? .....damn close....41 years and counting.....started when I was 13...do the math...yes, like Steve....I can still hear.
(still....of course protect my hearing at Live Events)
https://www.bing.com/shop?q=etymotic+research+ear+protection&FORM=SHOPPA&originI...
.....YOUNG LISTENER'S ....IF YOU'RE IN IT TO WIN IT AND THE LONG HALL...PROTECT YOUR HEARING & BRAIN.
....and quit cranking Apple ear buds...in your head...before it is to late...public service announcement, has now ended. †8-)









Listening Room:


Room Treatments from Michael Green & my Home Brew

Sony as Transport (DVP-NS57P)
Yes, this inexpensive T-port is good...I sh__ you not!
Illuminati D-60 Digital Coax IC ~.5 meter

Shunyata Research Zitron Alpha Digital Power Cord to ZDSD {Significant}

Decware ZDSD DAC / Recorder
***************************************************************
W/Steve's Output Transformer's/kicking to the Curb quite a few superb DAC'S
***************************************************************
(@ -20 Ref Level, @ 16/192)
.....0.0, -0.5 or -1.0dB/Input Volume

WBT-0102Ag RCA Kimber Select KS1030 ~.75 meter

Decware Zen Mystery Amplifier
~***********************~
NOS/Platinum/Mullard E188CC/7308's in my A12 an B12 Input positions Cryogenic~NOS/Platinum/Telefunken E88CC for Inverter Tubes~NOS RCA 0A3's & matched Quad/Tung-Sol Cryo'd 7581A's, Reflector Cryo'd 6P's or Gold Lion KT88's Cryo'd

***************************************************
Kimber Select KS6063 Speaker Cable 8ft WBT-0681-Ag Spades
***************************************************

Acoustic Zen Adagio - Black Pearl (Modified)
.....enjoying from 8 ohm ZMA Taps

Caintuck Audio Eminence Alpha 15" OB BASS Unit
Auralex Subdude




Acoustic Zen Adagio's x-over's Modified/Full Range with Mundorf MCap Supremes-single Cap to each Tweeter/4.5k cross
(Gutted: 3kHz/18dB/Octave, Linkwitz/Riley Crossovers....with all crappy parts = gone)


XLO Pro Power Cord to ZMA
PS Audio P3 Power Plant / Pangea AC-9SE from wall to P3
(Transport & ZDSD, Regenerated/*120*~ Multiwave off...ZMA on High Current Output)
System configured/on floor/Townshend CD Seismic Sink deployed & other isolation devices.





~Constants:
NOS/Platinum/Telefunken 6922/E88CC for Inverter Tubes (yes/the painfully expensive ones, from Upscale Audio = worth it, yes)
NOS RCA 0A3's.

Rotation/Power Quads:
~Matched Quad's~

Tung-Sol Cryo'd 7581A's
Reflector Cryo'd 6P's
Gold Lion KT88's Cryo'd
PENDING PURCHASE ~ GL KT77'S or T-Sol 7027A's.


Rotation/Input Tubes:
~NOS Platinum Tubes from Upscale Audio~

(Great Britain) Mullard 7308/E188CC ~ †2 pair (both pair Cryogenic)
(US/Great Britain) Ediswan CV2492/6922 ~ 2 pair (one pair Cryogenic)
(Hungary) Tungsram 6922/E88CC ~ 1 pair
(Hungary) Tungsram PCC88/7DJ8 ~ 1 pair

~Control/came with ZMA~
(Russia) 6N23P ~ 2 pair.
     

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Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
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Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #558 - 09/28/18 at 14:03:10
 
To wrap this up ...considering doing 3 out of the 4 mod's (sans new big caps/keep the Red Mallory's)! I was considering doing this anyway.

In March or April, when Steve should/might have the Nichicon's we need:

1) budget, per taxes allows me to get the Torii JR 25th. It would be nice to have another Decware Amp here and 25th'd, thus leaving my ZMA alone.
2) budget only allows 3 out of 4 mods -or- 4 out of 4. Like I said, I might forgo the Nichicon's, because the first 3 mod's are the most critical (regardless of budget).
3) Or, no matter what my overall budget is....I am and have been content with my ZMA as is....my interest in changing has waned and I leave as is.

Okay, KT88's are fun. However, I prefer my Ediswan's & 7581A quad! If I mess up a tube socket....it will be a good excuse to send my ZMA in and get 3 out 4 mod's done .....serendipity baby!   Grin
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Audio Alchemy DTI-Pro
Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
Tri-config/TipToes & Vibropods underneath Speakers
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Archie
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #559 - 09/28/18 at 16:29:49
 
Stone, I don't have a negative thing to say about my ZMA with the upgrades.  Love it!

If you are going for upgrades, just get all 4.  Otherwise, you'll always wonder what might be missing or gained.
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Technics 1200G TT w/ Ortofon Jubilee MC cart
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ZR2
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
HR1s
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Isolation platforms under everything.
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #560 - 09/28/18 at 18:11:13
 
Yeah, I was thinking the same thing Arch. Plus, it is the most cost effective.
Once Steve gets access to enough of the big Caps, I'll decide.

But, while I wait, I look forward to reading about the Torii JR 25th. It's a possibility and keeps my ZMA intact that I'm reluctant to change.
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Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
Tri-config/TipToes & Vibropods underneath Speakers
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #561 - 09/28/18 at 20:06:28
 
Even though my little Zen amp isn't as fully massaged as the 25th Anniversary Zen, it's got enough of that DNA that I've been listening to it almost exclusively, even over the Mystery Amp.

So if the Mods can get the ZMA to sound closer to the little Zen, it's absolutely 100% worth doing! Even if you could only get all but the big caps done, the other mods should get you most of the way there...then add the big caps as they come in. In fact, that's what I'm hoping to do if I can figure out how to afford the upgrades...hell, I've said it before, I'll sweep floors and clean the toilet at the shop if that's what it takes! LOL

Yeah, I love the 25th Anniversary amp that much, that I feel getting the ZMA there is imperative. The ZMA has been my workhorse, go-to amp due to its consistent, ballsy great sound...it just needs that speed and micro-detail the comes with speed that the little Zen has.
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Archie
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #562 - 09/28/18 at 23:30:49
 
Raven, see if you can get a listen to a modified ZMA at Decfest and report your findings.  I respect your opinion and would be very interested in what you hear.
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Technics 1200G TT w/ Ortofon Jubilee MC cart
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ZR2
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
HR1s
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Isolation platforms under everything.
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NormD
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #563 - 09/29/18 at 00:46:00
 
My 25th Anniversary upgraded ZMA is on its way back to me. Should have Wednesday. Got all the upgrades, no use doing it only part way if Iím going to the trouble. Iíll report back after a few days when I have time to listen to my reference tracks - still a working guy. BTW, Steve installed the glass resistors as well.
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Oppo 103D for video
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ZTPre & ZMA for Stereo
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #564 - 09/29/18 at 13:42:07
 
I have been contemplating what you mention LR.
Reply #511 - 08/19/18
Reply #558 - "because the first 3 mod's are the most critical"

I can spend the winter with my ZMA happily and wait for the big Nich's to come in and send and have all 4 mod's done at once. Or, send 10/8 to Steve and have 3 of the 4 done...having the Nich's added later with a planned road trip. I am leaning towards the latter/sending on 10/8. I need my ZMA to be 25th'd.
Appreciate your input LR and as Archie asked; look forward to your impressions from Decfest.

Norm, early bird(s) get the worm! You and Arch got in there. I will have to do 3 out of 4 and as I mentioned in a just previous post....the first 3 of out of 4 are the most critical and LR affirmed. However, as Archie/recent post affirmed too, I will need to complete with Nich' Caps. No wondering.
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Audio Alchemy DTI-Pro
Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #565 - 09/29/18 at 16:27:52
 
Yeah, as good as we know the Torii JR 25th will be (and look forward to reading of its progress ~ to be enjoyed)....I need to do my ZMA for complete satisfaction. As you put it LR: "need its ballsy great sound...it just needs that speed and micro-detail that comes with speed that the little Zen* has." Archie is digging his, Norm will give us some impressions soon...and lets not forget J oF A of his own volition.

I read you on the budget issue LR! However, I'm scrapping it up and sending to Steve the 8th or 9th after the Fest....I should be able to get her on the road to the Mothership.

Special screen resistors on the Ultra-linear taps: 150
......prerequisite for all mods to follow. The reason is that all mods to follow are increasing the speed and resolution of the amplifier and these screen resistors automatically balance those increases as we go.

Beeswax Bypass Caps: 500
Speed

Glass Resistors: 380
......these N.O.S. vacuum tube metal film resistors are basically the best in the world.

= 1030 + round trip shipping.....sharp rocks water fall? Bring it on! †8-)




* ....get the sound closer to a little Zen/25th'd....could not agree more.

(Original Signature maintained below....SE84CS.....I remember when I hooked it up out of the box......not cliche'....scrapping my jaw up off the floor. Nice, I also had Peter Madnick's AA DAC with adjustable voltage output...yeah back in May of 2001, for my SE84CS....remote wand with adjustable voltage output from my Chair/owned new since 1994/Audio Alchemy).
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Sony as Transport
Illuminati D-60
Audio Alchemy DTI-Pro
Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
Tri-config/TipToes & Vibropods underneath Speakers
360 degree Rm Treats
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Lonely Raven
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Posts: 3280
Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #566 - 09/29/18 at 19:33:10
 
Quote:
Raven, see if you can get a listen to a modified ZMA at Decfest and report your findings.  I respect your opinion and would be very interested in what you hear.


Thank you, and yes, absolutely!

Edited:
My 25th Anniversary upgraded ZMA is on its way back to me. Should have Wednesday. Got all the upgrades, no use doing it only part way if Iím going to the trouble. Iíll report back after a few days when I have time to listen to my reference tracks - still a working guy. BTW, Steve installed the glass resistors as well.


I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts as well. Do you have any other Decware amps to compare to?
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NormD
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #567 - 09/29/18 at 22:47:57
 
LR:  I have a ZP3, ZSTAGE, ZTPRE but no other Decware power amps.
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OPPO Sonica DAC
Technics SL-1200M3D Turntable
SoundSmith The Voice cartridge
JRMedia Center running on a MacMini
Oppo 103D for video
Marantz AV8802a Pre
ZTPre & ZMA for Stereo
Rotel RMB-1585 amp
Focal Electra 1038Be speakers (93 db)
2Hsu Research ULS-15 M
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #568 - 09/30/18 at 00:29:52
 
Dammit. I miscalculated. I can do it Oct/2021. I will have to wallow through until then. †    :o
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Illuminati D-60
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Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
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Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
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NormD
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #569 - 09/30/18 at 00:56:15
 
Buy fewer tubes.....
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OPPO Sonica DAC
Technics SL-1200M3D Turntable
SoundSmith The Voice cartridge
JRMedia Center running on a MacMini
Oppo 103D for video
Marantz AV8802a Pre
ZTPre & ZMA for Stereo
Rotel RMB-1585 amp
Focal Electra 1038Be speakers (93 db)
2Hsu Research ULS-15 M
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #570 - 09/30/18 at 12:19:47
 
Never! Grin
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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #571 - 09/30/18 at 15:53:45
 


Speaking of tubes Norm, it's going to be interesting how the mod's influence your tube set preferences... a lot....not at all? Time will tell.

My two favorite runnings are:

NOS Mullard input ~ NOS Telefunken inverter ~ New Prod Reflector quad
....sweet in the pocket bliss!

then....put in NOS Ediswan input ~ NOS Telefunken stays as inverter ~ †New Prod 7581A T-Sol quad
....more dynamic extended in the Treble....rock solid definition bass!

NOS RCA 0A3



My KT66's are on very long hiatus!

KT88's are fun....but don't do it for me as the above Tri Fig's do. I will possibly sell them sometime this winter after a few more go rounds.

YM (not May) it will Very, if you're not runnng Kimber Select. Belden ain't gonna cut it. Tongue
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Sony as Transport
Illuminati D-60
Audio Alchemy DTI-Pro
Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
Tri-config/TipToes & Vibropods underneath Speakers
360 degree Rm Treats
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bandrade
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Posts: 23
Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #572 - 09/30/18 at 20:05:18
 
Stone, Norm Ö From my experience I am positive the anniversary mods will make those qualities that a particular tube is known for even better. Say if a tube gives you good top end detail, after the mods the top end will be better etc.

Stone in your case with the compliment of tubes and cables you have I would dare say they are definitely not your audio systems weak point. It might surprise you as it did me the weakness might lie in the ZMA sans anniversary upgrades. Only thing in your case because you seem to be so very happy with your system and have been for such a long time, I am not sure if you will like it after the anniversary mods. We are all nostalgic creatures to a certain extent, some more than others and think it was good in the past. Your current sound might have grown on you. But for me the difference in detail and realism is not even close. Having done the mods myself I could have easily gone back if it was not better at every step. I dumped the old parts for scrap after a few days of listening with the new parts installed as there was no going back (except the big red Mallories which I kept as I hope to use them in another project ... DC offset removal device comes to mind or some such project).


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stone_of_tone
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #573 - 10/03/18 at 22:04:30
 
I'm at a level of detail and realism due to my Kimber Select KS1030 & KS6063.

NO one (and I repeat no one) knows on this Forum, what this sounds like. It is profound. I would periodically put in other cables and they can't showcase what the ZMA really can do. Apparently Ray Kimber and team....do know something about capacitance and inductance?! Cable's should not matter but they do!

I could take my KS6063 to your home and let it be the only variable we change in your System....we will even keep your current IC's.....you will shit your pants. Long as you're not running some over wrought 97db @ 1 watt/1 meter garb.
+, if you have taken your ZMA to far....WITHOUT the SPECIAL screen resistor's on the Ultra-linear taps!!!!

So, the upgrade might not be what I need and may be to much in my System. I might buy a Torii JR 25th'd....check it out for awhile.

It is amazing what good old fashioned 16/192, can sound like out of Steve's Output Stage. Cool
....it makes me chuckle....about the other formats.....in which/I do want Tidal coming in though..... .









Listening Room:


Room Treatments from Michael Green & my Home Brew

Sony as Transport (DVP-NS57P)
Yes, this inexpensive T-port is good...I sh__ you not
Illuminati D-60 Digital Coax IC ~.5 meter

Shunyata Research Zitron Alpha Digital Power Cord to ZDSD {Significant}

Decware ZDSD DAC / Recorder
***************************************************************
W/Steve's Output Transformer's/kicking to the Curb quite a few superb DAC'S
***************************************************************
(@ -20 Ref Level, @ 16/192)
.....0.0, -0.5 or -1.0dB/Input Volume

WBT-0102Ag RCA Kimber Select KS1030 ~.75 meter

Decware Zen Mystery Amplifier
~***********************~
NOS/Platinum/Mullard E188CC/7308's in my A12 an B12 Input positions Cryogenic~NOS/Platinum/Telefunken E88CC for Inverter Tubes~NOS RCA 0A3's & matched Quad/Tung-Sol Cryo'd 7581A's, Reflector Cryo'd 6P's or Gold Lion KT88's Cryo'd

***************************************************
Kimber Select KS6063 Speaker Cable 8ft WBT-0681-Ag Spades
***************************************************

Acoustic Zen Adagio - Black Pearl (Modified)
.....enjoying from 8 ohm ZMA Taps

Caintuck Audio Eminence Alpha 15" OB BASS Unit
Auralex Subdude




Acoustic Zen Adagio's x-over's Modified/Full Range with Mundorf MCap Supremes-single Cap to each Tweeter/4.5k cross
(Gutted: 3kHz/18dB/Octave, Linkwitz/Riley Crossovers....with all crappy parts = gone)


XLO Pro Power Cord to ZMA
PS Audio P3 Power Plant / Pangea AC-9SE from wall to P3
(Transport & ZDSD, Regenerated/*120*~ Multiwave off...ZMA on High Current Output)
System configured/on floor/Townshend CD Seismic Sink deployed & other isolation devices.





~Constants:
NOS/Platinum/Telefunken 6922/E88CC for Inverter Tubes (yes/the painfully expensive ones, from Upscale Audio = worth it, yes)
NOS RCA 0A3's.

Rotation/Power Quads:
~Matched Quad's~

Tung-Sol Cryo'd 7581A's
Reflector Cryo'd 6P's
Gold Lion KT88's Cryo'd
PENDING PURCHASE ~ GL KT77'S or T-Sol 7027A's.


Rotation/Input Tubes:
~NOS Platinum Tubes from Upscale Audio~

(Great Britain) Mullard 7308/E188CC ~ †2 pair (both pair Cryogenic)
(US/Great Britain) Ediswan CV2492/6922 ~ 2 pair (one pair Cryogenic)
(Hungary) Tungsram 6922/E88CC ~ 1 pair
(Hungary) Tungsram PCC88/7DJ8 ~ 1 pair

~Control/came with ZMA~
(Russia) 6N23P ~ 2 pair.

Signature below, is my homage to my original SE84CS/#76...back in 2001.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #574 - 10/03/18 at 22:57:37
 
I would never make such a bold statement without hearing almost ever cable set out there; I try hard to not be so generalizing and excluding. But I get it, I have cables that I feel give me detail and realism too, the best I've heard, and I get transported away.

But I have to say, as much as I loved my Torii Mk III, as much as you love your ZMA, the 25th Anniversary mods in the Monoblocks I have, now seasoned and dishing it out, are a very different "critter." This type of fidelity does take wrapping one's head around and almost in a sense lift your audio consciousness to a higher plateau. Now I have come back to the single-ended sound of the Zen amps with a vengeance preferring it to the push-pull amps, but if I loved a ZMA as much as you do I would consider the mods before a Torii Jr. with the mods. I am certain that the "lift" that your fine cables give you with the ZMA will reveal the enhancements of the mods and take you to that next level.

I have to confess that though I haven't wanted to often, and wished that financially and "peace of mindfully" I could stay in a contented state, getting to that next level is the wonder and fulfillment of this hobby for me, and worth the wait. And these 25th Anniversary mods are like jumping a few levels in one instant.

Just saying keep considering the mods. Word to the wise. Wink
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #575 - 10/03/18 at 23:00:32
 
I would make this bold statement and I DID.

The ZMA and I would include probably all of the Decware Line, ME/having owned a Torii III, SE84CS & Super Zen CKC and my now ZMA for almost 5 years.

.....worthy of the best cabling......and the use of profound is not hyperbole.

I have tried many times to OUST this Speaker Cable (KS6063). Disclaimer: †I realize its cost and I was fortunate to obtain at half price from a deal I struck at the CableCO.

My POINT....if you move in to the ZMA price range and FIDELITY....CableCO in some top flight Cable..... ....it matter's.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #576 - 10/03/18 at 23:12:44
 
....and Lon, I know you know with your top flight Voodoo Cabling.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #577 - 10/03/18 at 23:17:26
 
Well, I think it's fair only to say "For me" when you make that sort of statement about a particular cable. Just saying. We all have different tastes, rooms, and "ears" and neither of us is wrong if we've made an extensive cable exploration and prefer a different cable than another. So much is personal. Extreme generalizations and absolutes in audio are in my opinion just not possible. I ignore them when I see them, they turn ME off. Just saying, that's me, and I struggle to refrain from them. To each their own.

I don't at all disagree that when you reach this level of fidelity that one should explore the best cabling if one can. There is a level to climb to if possible and we can each find that and there's fun in the journey.

And my experience with the 25th Anniversary mods in two components lead me to think you would be better served modding the ZMA, just my feeling and thought. Hope that you will still consider it.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #578 - 10/03/18 at 23:22:25
 
Yes, I meant to comment Lon....you might be right, the enhancements could enhance my fidelity not hinder...with my Cabling. Their is my dilemma. You're smarter and a faster typer than me! Grin

My prose lack what I could convey face to face to understand and be understood.

So my thesis statement is.....I was eluding to the fact...it does not have to be a specific one Brand.....but the upper cables matter if you have the System for it.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #579 - 10/03/18 at 23:54:05
 
Fully agree. There are layers of fidelity to reveal in these Decware products. . . they are lifetime exploration projects.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #580 - 10/04/18 at 03:08:43
 
Got my ZMA with the 25th anniversary mods back today. While only have a few hours on it, here are my reflections.

1) Stone: Get the upgrade. Really. Seriously.
2) The bass is fuller and deeper. Sharp, not at all muddy like the amp I was using as a substitute while Steve had my ZMA. I will get accused of running a sub. There was a bass fiddle in my room and I could hear the bow on the strings.
3) The sound stage is what I would expect if I were at a concert. It is better than before which was already really good. It seems wider but more weighted in the center. Diana Krall made my jump out of my chair!
4) The mids are clean and crisp. Iím hearing detail I had not heard before.
5) The cymbals are crystal clear.

Did is use the word clear a few too many times?

So my opinion is similar to those who already have the upgrade. Iím glad I did it.

Norm
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Marantz AV8802a Pre
ZTPre & ZMA for Stereo
Rotel RMB-1585 amp
Focal Electra 1038Be speakers (93 db)
2Hsu Research ULS-15 M
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #581 - 10/04/18 at 06:17:04
 
Congratulations Norm!
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #582 - 10/04/18 at 15:51:08
 
I concur with everything Norm describes.  My problem was with comparing it to the unmodified ZMA.  Like Norm, I had an inferior substitute in my system and I forgot exactly how the ZMA originally sounded.  But absolutely no negatives attached with the mods.
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ZMC1
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ZR2
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
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Isolation platforms under everything.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #583 - 10/04/18 at 16:35:42
 
Quote:
The ZMA and I would include probably all of the Decware Line, ME/having owned a Torii III, SE84CS & Super Zen CKC and my now ZMA for almost 5 years.


Cripes! Has it been almost 5 years!!!
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #584 - 10/04/18 at 19:06:06
 
Hey Stone,

I agree cables are really a big deal. I started making some nice ones for fun with VHAudio OCC silver in cotton, and KLE absolute IC ends. Then, improving them would have cost loads compared to parts, so I dug in, exploring materials, design and geometries in methodical iterations over many years. More balanced, revealing and musical all at the same time was a natural result.

Last year I sent several iterations to a friend to test in a revealing LTA OTL and Omega system. He thought mine left his better Voodoos well behind, and finding mine more similar in terms of transparency, clarity, fine detail, and musicality to Zenwave's best silvers. But in his setup, he preferred the slightly bigger sound, clarity and slightly increased spacial definition of the Zenwave over mine. In my setting cables as clear and "big" as Dave's were too much overall, so musically mellowing mine has been beneficial in my room...but in his, not. It was encouraging that we agreed, though different system/rooms helped define different preferences.

This year I sent several improved iterations to a friend with multiple super-good reference systems used for testing. Having gone through many costly "world class" ICs, he found some of them to do some aspects of presentation better than mine, but preferred mine overall. So though I will work with his evaluations to improve future versions, I guess mine are good enough to comment in the context of how better ICs mix with mods.

Using my ICs, and some speaker cables I made to improve on Synergistic Research Copper Elements, I did mods in the Torii IV and CSP3. A crazy number of tests over nearly two years, I rejected lots of caps, resistors and wires considered quite good. Often finding blending a right combination of caps to be more natural and complex than a single, I sort of organically ended up with a nice variety of 8 bypasses in the CSP3, and 10 per channel in the Torii. Also I preferred different input circuit power caps and reconstructive feedback caps in the Torii. For both amp and pre I liked different electros, modified coupling cap arrangements, a number of resistor changes, as well as upgraded potentiometers, connectors, internal wires, and some tuned damping on a few internal parts, but most beneficial, carefully damping the transformers.

Though notably increased clarity, speed and density is tricky to musically balance, with it, I can say my amps better utilize and improve, not only good cables, but everything else in my system....source, tubes, speakers, room...everything.

With some variations on approaches and parts, I would expect Steve's mods to sound different than mine. But since his mods are based on his own previous amp choices, with his long developed personal preferences as a foundation, I would be surprised if the modded amps did not continue the general character of the originals, but with many improvements that can really add up! Pretty much what Lon, Norm and Archie and others have experienced. May be that the modded ZMA could stimulate some system tuning to get the most from it, but I too would be surprised if your already beloved cables and system were not notably awakened by it.

Wink
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #585 - 10/04/18 at 21:33:00
 
ďI can say my amps better utilize and improve, not only good cables, but everything else in my system....source, tubes, speakers, room...everything.Ē

Thereís the point, no matter how good the cables are, and I do believe that cables make a difference, cables cannot change the design or the components used to execute the design.  Certainly different cable designs can be more revealing of what is upstream and one would expect that would be a good thing, but the reality is that it some instances the reverse is true.  That is another discussion.  The point being, as Lon stated, none of us can be absolute about anything when making recommendations as their are too many variables to consider and no matter how much time and experience we have gathered over the years we still have a lot more to learn, that is what the UFO25 has so forcefully brought to my attention.

In addition I have considered the observations and sentiments of all to have merit even if those observations seem to conflict with the conclusions that I have reached and by doing so I have benefitted.  Observations that are presented with passion serve to open my mind but we have to be careful not to allow our passion to become dogmatic absolute statements as those can be very counterproductive for all.

If that were to happen it would be a shame.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #586 - 10/05/18 at 00:31:21
 
Oh my goodness Joman, you are only convincing yourself and the Belden crowd that the best cabling is this or that ..... Wow, your crowd will never know?!

Yes, they are expensive.... But transformative, so until you witness it for yourself....you are null and void.

Get your head out† ....good real prose though, seriously!
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #587 - 10/05/18 at 00:45:44
 
Stone, I think instead of "Stone_of_tone" we'll call you Stone Hammer!   Grin
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #588 - 10/05/18 at 01:08:04
 
Stone, I wasnít talking about the cables... no need for any further response.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #589 - 10/05/18 at 01:14:33
 
So Joman, you don't understand what you wrote?

What you wrote was shlock DOGMA!
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #590 - 10/05/18 at 01:33:48
 
I guess I am missing something. I believe the message was that cables are an important element in the system as are the amps, tubes, capacitors, resistors, etc.  I couldn't agree more. Each of us has settled on our system and appear to like what we have. Can they be improved?  Always, but improve is relative and personal. I have not tried most the cables of others on this forum and I am now reluctant to share my choices for fear of being flamed.  So sad.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #591 - 10/05/18 at 01:43:14
 
Let it unfold Norm and have no fear. This is civil.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #592 - 10/05/18 at 02:35:06
 
Just as a chain is as good as it's weakest link, i.e. the tensile force at which a chain will break in a test will be defined the weakest link in that chain. So in an audio system the sound one hears is defined by the weakest component in the system i.e. that component is what you are hearing no more as that is limiting everything else. It could be  the amp, pre-amp, interconnects, speaker cable or even components within a component. So when one upgrades the weakest component in ones audio system suddenly everything else seems to be better and the weakest link/component in ones system becomes something else. And the journey continues. Achieving audio nirvana is expensive.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #593 - 10/05/18 at 02:43:01
 
The weakest link in my audio chain is me!
How happy I am changes everything profoundly.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #594 - 10/05/18 at 14:17:15
 
Saw this and it seemed appropriate:

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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #595 - 10/06/18 at 17:03:48
 
Back to ZMA mods...  I'm finding that the ZR2 is not as big a factor with my modded ZMA as it was before.  I still think it adds some nice qualities in the lower range but the bass enhancement isn't as needed and its effects are a bit more subtle.  It's easy to get too much too.
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ZR2
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #596 - 10/06/18 at 17:11:30
 
I find the "easy to get too much" to be true with the ZEN25 and DNA2 speakers also.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #597 - 10/06/18 at 17:25:57
 
I find that to be true with the SE84UFO3 25th Anniversary Monoblocks and the HR-1 speakers as well. I admit with some of the recordings I have "too much" can be very nice. And with most before "too much" is a wonderful thing.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #598 - 10/06/18 at 17:51:19
 
Quote:
I'm finding that the ZR2 is not as big a factor with my modded ZMA as it was before.  I still think it adds some nice qualities in the lower range but the bass enhancement isn't as needed and its effects are a bit more subtle.  It's easy to get too much too.


Archie, I couldn't agree more.  I actually made a similar comment a couple of months ago when I completed the mods.  It got to the point where I was simply VERY rarely engaging it.
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Re: Steve/Decware & Company.....Developments?
Reply #599 - 10/06/18 at 17:54:37
 
Yes, I read where you sold it.
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