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Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3? (Read 3569 times)
Blueone302
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Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
03/29/16 at 04:45:06
 
New owner of a Torii Mk IV.  I'm considering pairing the amp with the CSP3?  It sounds really great as is.  Like I've read, if the recording is of poor quality, it comes through; and sometimes in a painful way.  If it's a good to great recording, it's amazing.   So, will the CSP3 really improve the overall quality of what I'm hearing on the Torii Mk IV?  Any input appreciated.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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DBC
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #1 - 03/29/16 at 14:26:08
 
Blueone302,

You might get more responses if you give us more info. What's your source, what speakers, listening room size and music tastes.

Over the last 15 years I've had the Zen, Super Zen and now Zen UFO in a 16' x 22' room with high ceiling and openings into other rooms. I do have a Decware CSP that now gets very little use.

I have an Oppo BDP-105 player connected directly to the Zen UFO which in turn is connected driectly to Omega single driver (no crossover) Alnico Monitors. A very Open & Transparent presentation.

With the CSP installed between my source and amp there is some loss of Transparency and Detail retrieval. How noticeable this is depends on how revealing your speakers are. My Omegas are very revealing (in a good way) so the effect is noticeable.

In some systems adding a CSP can have a positive effect by helping to mask problems at the source or with speakers. It can help round off sharp highs and sounds a litter Darker on the low end which can be perceived as more bass.

Based on my experience I'm convinced "Less Is More" when it comes to cables & equipment. You have a great amp, I'm curious to know what else is in your system? I'm thinking the money would be better spent elsewhere in the system in the long run.
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Main System: Oppo BDP-105D, SE84UFO amp, Omega Super Alnico Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 15's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
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Lon
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #2 - 03/29/16 at 14:47:19
 
I hesitated to respond immediately as I was basically going to say the same thing as DBC. I have a CSP2+ in my system because I use three sources (my DirectStream, my ZP3 and my Denon universal player for SACD, DVD-A and video discs) and the Torii Mk III only has two inputs. To be honest I find that with these top quality sources I have, directly into the Torii makes the clearest, most dynamic and "accurate" sound. As I use the DirectStream more than the ZP3 (I run my DVR into the DirectStream as well as my Redbook transport and the digital out from my Denon). The CSP2+ did help the sound of the lesser quality sources I used in the past after a lot of work getting the right tube complement and cabling. The naturally "compression" you can get from ramping up the voltage output from the CSP can really make a difference. But it seems to take away from the sound of the sources I use now, just a bit, but although I try to live with it I prefer "straight in" to the Torii.

I do really enjoy the CSP2+ that I have as a headphone amp, and in my new domestic situation I am using headphones again and I'm very happy with the sound from this preamp.

If you don't need an additional source into your amp, or if you don't need a headphone amp, and you have top-notch source components and are as happy with the sound as you say you are. . . I'd stand pat for now.
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« Last Edit: 03/29/16 at 14:49:10 by Lon »  

HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,Torii MkIII,ZBIT,ZROCK2,Taboo MkIV;PS Audio:Soloist SE,DMP+DSD,P10,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs,Mapleshade:Dbl Helix+,SamsonV2+V3;CambrAudi CXU;Rega RP3,TTPSU,Groovetracer upgrades,Exact2;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner,Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #3 - 03/29/16 at 15:11:33
 
Thanks for the reply.  I am running a Onkyo C-7030 with a Wolfson DAC as my source to the Mk IV out to a pair of Klipsch Cornwall III's via 14 gauge wire.  The room is 26x18.  I have the speakers centered on the long wall in front of a large bay window. (12 ft wide) I have no room treatments.  There is a large 10X12 heavy rug in the center of the room on hardwood floors.  I started out on a short wall on one end because I was worried about placement in front of the windows, but changed things around because of the cookie cutter aspect of door and entry openings on either end.  In the current setting, there is a marked difference in the sound.  As for listening tastes, over the last 10 years, I have gravitated more towards jazz and blues.  I also have a love for classical.  But, I'm a child of the seventies, so classic rock is in there too plus a smattering of country.    And.... I'm a minister, so I listen to a wide variety of contemporary Christian and southern Gospel.  I know; I'm all over the place.  I was raised in a home where we listened to everything.   I think this is part of my reason for considering the preamp.  I listen to such a wide variety of music, about one third of which is from the 70's and 80's where the sound or recording dynamics are poor.  If I had to give a descriptor, I would say many of those recordings have a thinness about them; a lack of depth in the mid and low end.  In the end, I guess I'm wondering if the preamp would allow me to wring better sound out of some of those older recordings.  That said, if I can't improve the sound beyond where it is now, I'm okay.  The Mk IV has already blown away the solid state Yamaha amp and a custom built tube amp I had been using.  On good to great recordings, I'm hearing things I've never heard before.  Again, I would appreciate hearing others thoughts or views.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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Lon
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #4 - 03/29/16 at 15:37:29
 
Thanks for the info. I'm familiar with that cd player, a friend of mine has one. I do think that a CSP3 may help you with those less than ideal recordings. It can add a bit of body to those thinner sounding ones and with the "compression" you can achieve a bit of a taming of the shrillest parts of the high end.

It's nice that you listen to all sorts of music. But it does make a bit of a difficulty in the system. I find that the preamp can really help the sonics of rock and blues and music with electric instruments. But with much of jazz and classical and music with acoustic instruments I find what it adds is not what I prefer. But if you have the preamp you can use it . . . or not.
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« Last Edit: 03/29/16 at 15:45:25 by Lon »  

HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,Torii MkIII,ZBIT,ZROCK2,Taboo MkIV;PS Audio:Soloist SE,DMP+DSD,P10,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs,Mapleshade:Dbl Helix+,SamsonV2+V3;CambrAudi CXU;Rega RP3,TTPSU,Groovetracer upgrades,Exact2;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner,Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #5 - 03/29/16 at 22:50:58
 
DBC and Lon,

  Thanks for the input.  I do think my "all over the place" tastes may make it more complicated to achieve or find the overall sound I would like.   I also wonder if it might be possible that my current set up prefers jazz.  I'm hearing more detail, and extra depth in the low end with jazz recordings than I have in the past.  Blues seem to be better across the board too.  Another possibility I'm pondering regarding the sound is that when I decided to buy the amp, the previous owner shipped me a set of EL34's and a set of KT66's. (Tungsol) With the exception of the rectifier (Phillips 5U4G), everything else is what Steve placed in it to re-up the warranty.  (6N23, OC2, OA3R and another compliment of the EL 34's.)  Can't complain though.  Van Morrison's Moondance is sounding pretty awesome right now.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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Lon
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #6 - 03/29/16 at 23:08:52
 
Good news that things sound so good as is. I too listen all over the map though mainly to jazz. I think that with break in and some tube rolling you'll be in bliss in a month or so. And then can decide on a CSP3. . . .I found two things really set my Torii on the right path: KT66 output tubes and 7308 input tubes (the 6N23 are good but just have a sort of upper midrange something that doesn't work for me on piano and strings.)
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HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,Torii MkIII,ZBIT,ZROCK2,Taboo MkIV;PS Audio:Soloist SE,DMP+DSD,P10,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs,Mapleshade:Dbl Helix+,SamsonV2+V3;CambrAudi CXU;Rega RP3,TTPSU,Groovetracer upgrades,Exact2;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner,Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #7 - 03/30/16 at 01:16:55
 
Lon,
  I wondered if the thin strident sound I'm hearing on some of the older stuff could be a tube thing. But, I'm sure the recording and mastering process from twenty-twenty five years ago is partly to blame.  I decided to go the CD route about fifteen years ago and bought remastered cd's on some of my favorites that sound much better.  As for the tubes, I've always been partial to EL34's on the output; but a few others have said I should switch in the 66's.  The guy I bought it from loved the 66's and swore by them.  It came back from Steve with the 6N23P's.  Hadn't given those much thought yet.  Although I would love to try the pre, I guess the best course of action is to wait about a month or so and see how it's sounding and then reevaluate.  As for the CSP3, I was willing to wait and see if I could find someone who has to have the new ZTPRE that might sell theirs.  Maybe the timing will work out in a month or so. Thanks again for the advice.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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DBC
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #8 - 04/02/16 at 15:58:50
 
Blueone302,

I used the original Klipsch RF-7's for over 10 years with my Zen, so I know the Klipsch sound pretty well. These as well as your Cornwalls are fine speakers but like everything audio do have their limitations.

Like you, for many years I assumed about 20% of my 1,500 + CD collection were simply less than stellar recordings. A lot of the old Classic Rock recordings just lacked body (sounded thin). I added a Decware Preamp with only incremental improvement. It helped some with the thin material but rolled off other material which did not need it. Eventually I added twin HSU Mid Bass Modules to reinforce the Mid Bass which helped things a bunch.

A couple years ago I purchased a pair of Omega Super Alnico Monitors  (single driver no crossover) out of curiosity and this was a real turning point in my thinking. The Omega's are far more capable of conveying the recording space and musical emotion (there is a much greater sense the performance is actually taking place in your room). I can actually say there isn't a CD in my collection that is un-listenable with these speakers. I'm actually listening to music I never liked in the past.

With my Klipsch I found I had to turn them up to sound their best. The Omega's on the other hand sound great at any volume. The much smaller Omega's out perform the Klipsch RF-7's in all areas. I think part of the difference is cabinet resonance. It's tough to control cabinet resonance (noise) on the large Klipsch cabinets (lower cabinet noise = lower noise floor = greater dynamics). The smaller Omega cabinets do not vibrate and with no crossover the music simply flows with dynamics.

The Omegas's have great Bass Quality but do lack in Bass Quantity for my taste in my large room. So I do run them with a pair of 15" LoFOB's (Low Frequency Open Baffle) units that I built to reinforce the lower mid-bass.

So in the end I'm not sure there is a perfect solution to your original question regarding the Cornwalls. I had the same issue with my RF-7's.

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Main System: Oppo BDP-105D, SE84UFO amp, Omega Super Alnico Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 15's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #9 - 04/02/16 at 17:38:19
 
DBC,

  I love the CWIII's.  But, as I listen more, I wonder if the new amp could be revealing some limitations.  Up to now, it is apparent this setup  excels with any non electric instrumentation. You also make a good point about the bass response.  I'm surprised at what just isn't there in some recordings, and again mostly pop and rock.  But, this morning I pulled some bluegrass by Crooked Still and then Alison Krauss.  The system as is loved it.  Maybe it's coming around?  I do plan on looking at some other designs in the future.  A friend has built the ZOB.  I'm still trying to figure out how it sounded that good.  We're gonna play with those down the road.  That said, my thinking on the CSP3 and the responses from you and Lon has caused me to realize I need to take a breath and step back for a month or so.  Before I change anything else I want to give the tubes in place a chance and then move from there.  Thanks again for your help.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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Lon
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #10 - 04/02/16 at 17:41:48
 
The bass IS the last thing that comes out from the amps and new tubes imo. So keep playing and if your experience mirrors mine one day there will suddenly be this excellent balance top to bottom of the frequencies, and you're deep into listening.
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DBC
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #11 - 04/04/16 at 15:06:48
 
Blueone302,

I think you are wise to wait, perhaps experiment with tubes and your source.

Based on my experience with Klipsch and the CSP, I don't think adding a CSP to your system will fix what I found to be a speaker issue.

Generally I put Bass into two categories Brute Force (Black Sabbath, Three Doors Down, etc.) and Complimentary (Jannis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, etc.). I found my Klipsch RF-7s very good at the Brute Force Bass type music material. Complimentary Bass is more nuanced (in the background) and my RF-7s came across thin with this material.

My Omega's although much smaller, have much better Low End resolution. They are much more engaging on the Joplin / Hendrix type material.
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Main System: Oppo BDP-105D, SE84UFO amp, Omega Super Alnico Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 15's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #12 - 04/06/16 at 16:43:18
 
Interesting tidbit. (To me at least.)  In an effort to keep the room where my system is located "aesthetically" pleasing to certain members of the household, I had the Cornwalls in front of a large bay window which resulted in a triangle shaped cavity behind each that started out at about 16 inches to where the inside corner touched the wall below each window.  So, since I know the Klipsch rule for the Cornwalls is against the wall, I came home an hour early yesterday and a friend and I moved some furniture around and the speakers out toward the end walls approximately three and one-half feet each.... and guess what I found?  The missing low end and depth that I was whining about. Drums are more pronounced and rim shots seem more accurate. Plus, the bass switch on the MK IV had no significant effect before.  But now, you can tell it tightens up the bass. Now I understand where this can be handy on various music and recordings.  I also had read an article on stranded wire, that the larger the wire gauge, the potential to actually lose some of the nuances of the recordings.  Supposedly the signal/charge travels the outside of the wire regardless of the size.  (Not sure if I'm buying.)  But, I did read it.  So, at my friends suggestion, we tried some 20gauge solid speaker wire.  (I was using 14 gauge monster wire before.) And again, there were subtle yet noticeable differences with no audible loss of anything sonically.  In fact, some of the high treble or high end vocals that could be strident at high volume smoothed out.  Cymbals sound better too.  And, some of the older 70's classic rock where the voices kind of ran together seem more distinctive.  I tend to be a skeptic on many things.  And these small tweaks seemed too simple to make any significant change.  Yes, some of the older stuff is still thinner than the new.  But, I'm chalking that up to the compression done on many of the early cd's.  And so, with the exception of the following caveat, the tweaks seem to be a great bonus.  About the caveat.  My wife comes home and asks why I moved her stuff around, why there's wire everywhere, why said wire is elevated on tacky chop stick platforms....  She wasn't happy.  But, once I clean it up and hide the wires, she will come around.  It may not look as good at the moment, but it sounds much better.   Now, out of curiosity, I do plan on trying some 14 gauge solid wire just to see if that makes a difference.  In the meantime, I better get back to work.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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DBC
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #13 - 04/06/16 at 17:51:07
 
Blueone302,

Glad to hear you are making some progress. The floor and wall surface behind your speakers will reinforce the Bass (how much depends some on type of construction). In some cases speaker placement can cause the floor and wall behind to vibrate making vocals difficult to make out.

Are your speakers sitting on wood or carpet?
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Main System: Oppo BDP-105D, SE84UFO amp, Omega Super Alnico Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 15's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
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Blueone302
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Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #14 - 04/06/16 at 19:38:42
 
DBC,

  They are sitting on hardwood floors.  The speakers are the 3rd iteration of the Cornwalls and have the built in risers.  I've read and talked to folks who own them.  Some recommended I take them off and couple them to the floor.  Others suggest that I should leave them on and put some maple blocks under each corner. I did try some small plugs under each corner.  No discernible difference that I could tell. But, this was only raising them 1/2 inch. I haven't been able to find the engineer's thinking; but I assumed these built in risers were to get them off the floor and that should be sufficient.  Thoughts?
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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Blueone302
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Posts: 71
Re: Torii Mk IV Paired With a CSP3?
Reply #15 - 04/09/16 at 19:04:04
 
Crazy but true.  When I sent the MK IV back to Steve to re-up the warranty, they of course sent it back with a new tube compliment.  I had read a post where Steve said he was listening to some Siemens 7DJ8's and how good it sounded.  I have a friend who came across some new Philips 7DJ8's.  He had saved them, but wasn't using them.  I got them yesterday and plugged them in place of the stock input 6N23P's.  It immediately seemed like there was more of everything, kind of like the 7DJ8's boosted the output? Sound is great, and I just plugged them in.  There was a little bit of an edge on a few things.  I chalked that up to new tubes and tamed it easily via the amp.  Only been three weeks and I'm very impressed and happy with the MK IV.  It is becoming apparent that with a few tweaks and seemingly endless tube choices, the MK IV a truly multifaceted gem.
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Decware: Torii MK IV, Don Sachs: Line Stage Model 2, Decware: HR-1, Oppo BDP 105D, Ice Age Audio: Cryo Copper Series Power Cords, Better Cables: Silver Serpent Interconnect Cables, Home Brewe Speaker Cables.
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