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Old 02-12-2014, 04:53 PM
Triodeotl Triodeotl is offline
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Midwest
Posts: 25
Default All Tube Analog System

I have a BASIS Debut Gold Standard turntable with an
SME IV.Vi arm. This is paired with a Clearaudio Stradavari ebony body cartridge that is .7mv.
The tone arm cable is a Purist Audio Venusta Praesto.

BASIS Debut turntable with Isolation Base, Brinkley Terra Song Preamp

My front end is a Brinkley Terra Song Satori IV preamp with phono section and separate power supply.
The preamp is totally sealed and has four tubes. It features a touch mute and a soft startup and standby
which allows the tubes to be heated at all times. I use Sovtek 12AX7LPS in the phono section which are
long lasting, low noise and sound real good. The long plate stucture gives them a warmer sound than
the EH 12AX7 (NEW SENSOR) which I believe to be the same tube with short plates which makes it
even quieter but is a brighter and colder sounding tube because of it. In the line section of the preamp
I typically use Sylvania 5751 tubes which are also low noise and have a nice dark and warm sound.
Gain is not an issue here.

The Bi-Amped CLS IIZ speakers & MA-1 amps with McIntosh MC302 & Magnepan 1.6 for bass augmentation from 100HZ on down

My record cleaning machine is a SOTA. If you have a lot of records and you collect new and
used a wet record cleaning machine is a must. This machine is all manual other than the spinning
platter and vacuum switch. The SOTA is super heavy duty. I use Nitty Gritty Pure 2 for cleaning fluid.


Accessories include a Signet SK305 electronic stylus cleaner. The Sumiko Fluxbuster for moving
coil cartridges and the Thor Audio Phono Burn for completely burning in the system directly
from the phono input on the preamp. Additonally there is a digital stylus weight gauge to double
check tracking weight. Custom stereo to mono phono adaptors for mono jazz LP's.
All are recommended for when you need them.

The front end equipment is in an Atlantis rack that is 24” tall and there are Adona large cones
under the stand piercing the floor and additionally under the middle shelf support.
Beneath the preamp and power supply I have PAD (Purist Audio Design) TIP (Total Isolation Platform)
isolation platforms that are no longer made. The platforms are fantastic and flesh out the sound,
isolate and decrease noise. (See brochure below).

Brinkley Terra Song Satori IV Tube Preamp and Power Supply

I recently added a one inch cast plexglas base to the top of the stand from Stereo Squares.
This is like a Calibrator base for the BASIS turntable. Beneath it are Solid Tech Discs of Silence isolators.
This adds a whole new dimension to the sound. A fantastic upgrade that is quieter, has more bass and did
little to mess with the sound other than to enhance it. Additonally I
added another one inch thick cast acrylic shelf to the center of the stand now resting on
stainless steel upright adjustment Allens.

The brass disks on top of the preamp and CD player are Mapleshade weights that I use to
counteract the weight of heavy power cords and interconnects going to each to balance out
the component and to keep it from being dragged by the attached cables.

The cables from the preamp to the power amps are 6 meter pair of Purist Audio Aqueous Luminist. These Purist
cables have a great semblance of reality and have resonance to them that sounds like real instruments
in the room and are especially life like on string bass. Soundstage is good and wide and with good
bloom and depth. These cables are new ferox charged.

Under the preamp I use small Stillpoints Mini Ultra's and under the preamp's power supply I have
Aureos small version.

Sansui TU-719 FM Tuner

Other front end equipment is the Sansui TU-719 tuner and Lector CDP.6 player. I have Black Diamond Racing
cones attached to the Lector on top of Black Diamond LM Disks. I have the player sitting on a large
PAD platform. The Lector is using RFT 12AU7 tubes instead of the stock Mullard 12AT7 tubes to
give the player less output so I do not have to adjust volume on the preamp as much and I like
the way it sounds with the RFT's. And then there is a Yamaha T-2 tuner (the T-2 exceeds any
broadcast in quality that it encounters) that sits on another large PAD platform but is not currently
used. Both of those components sit on top of a NIAD double wide cabinet.

The Sansui TU-719 tuner has Solid Tech IsoClears under it which elevates it slightly so that the
dial is easier to see and the IsoClear's sit on a Zoethecus Z-Slab base. The Sansui tuner is
fed by two Radio Shack 15-2163 six element antennae that I have mounted in the attic
above the garage. These have a seperate coax run from each antennae to the listening area.
One of the antennae is pointed to the east or MN and the other is pointed to the north for
WLSU here in WI. I use a barrel connector to connect to the RG59 coax that feeds the Sansui
tuner so I can switch manually between antennae without a switch box to the RG59 coax feeding
to each antenna.

McIntosh MR-71

I just added this McIntosh MR-71 tuner in immaculate like shape. The presence of the acoustical
environment is stunning on live broadcasts. Boy this tuner is going to be a keeper for sure. Very clear
sounding with lots of stage depth. Imaging is more realistic than solid state.

The CD player has a Purist Audio Design Aqueous Praesto 1.5 meter power cord and
Purist Audio Aqueous Aureus Praesto interconnects. The tuner has Purist Elementa Advance
Rev.C interconnects the version right before the Praesto but essentially the same. The BASIS table,
the Brinkley preamp and the Sansui tuner all use their stock captive power cords.

All of the front end equipment plugs into a BPT 2.5 Signature isolation transformer that is like a
3.5 Signature but BPT did not call it that at the time that I bought it. I think it has all the
upgrades to it other than the Bybee Quantum Purifiers but those could be added. It has a
couple of FIM outlets in it and a couple of frozen Hubbles. The power cord to the BPT on its own
20 amp circuit is a Purist Audio Aqueous Praesto 2 meter. These new Purist
power cords have a real tonal density with a lot of real bass. These power cords sound alot
like music unlike most power cords.

Purist Audio Design Isolation Platform

My power amps are Atma-Sphere MA-1’s and these are some of the first ten pairs that Ralph Karsten
built. I bought them new. The only upgrades to them are new Cardas copper binding posts and
I put filter capacitors on the driver tubes that adds just a little to the sound. New caps were
installed in the power supplies with an improved grounding scheme and upgraded bias adjustment
by Atma-Sphere. These are on Sound Anchor stands that have the sliding top brace that
accommodates just about any depth of amp. The MA-1's are used in single ended input mode.
Power cords are Purist Audio Canorus which have a massive sound.

The input tubes are 6922 (6DJ8) 6H23n Russian tubes that are the ones with the rocket logo.
I get these from a source in Siberia and these 6922's are the lowest noise, best sounding and
longest lasting of all. Ralph Karsten told me about these tubes years ago and at the time I got
them from ARS but you can still find sources for them. I have EAT Tube Coolers on these 6922
tubes as the EAT's which is a damping device may have the most effect at this 1st position.

Atma-Sphere MA-1 OTL

The 12UA7 tubes are I believe the phase inverter and I am using Sylvania 6189W or 5814A tubes
here which are also long lasting and quiet. The driver tubes are 6CG7 and are cleartop RCA
the best I have found.

The 6AS7G power tubes are Russian 6H13C Sovtek or Svetlana which are equally robust and
sound the same.

I am using 3 Solid Tech Feet of Silence with all O - Rings under each Atma - Sphere power amp.
These do lots of good to everything. I really like them in this application.

The Sound Anchor amp stands are filled with shot and silicone and have Track Audio feet with
stainless steel mounting rings similar to Martin Logan ETC's. I have Solid Tech steel and Corian isolation
platforms on top of the SA stands. On top of the platform I have the old style Audioquest
Sorbathane pucks (now sitting static due to the FOS).
The power cords from the amps to the wall are Purist Audio Canorus.

Speaker cables are Purist Audio Venusta Praesto version 1.5 meter. These are really nice in their
own way. They have great bass and a very open midrange that flatters piano and string bass.
They are open sounding but not as dimensional or encapsilating as the Cardas Golden Hexlink 5C
that I used to have. So that is a trade off. But I have to say that the new Venusta speaker cable is
the best thing I have heard other than the Cardas in my system.

Lector CD.6 Tube CD Player and Yamaha T2 FM Tuner on PAD Platforms In Target Rack

The speakers are Martin Logan CLS IIZ that I got when they were the big sensation. Likely the
most reviewed speakers of all time they demand the best ancillary equipment and cables.
Two years ago I got the "new material" panels for them as the originals finally failed after
20 years and around the same time one of the power supply boards went out. I sent the board in
and it turned out I had a slightly older version of the power supply than what they ended up
eventually using in the IIZ so Martin Logan put the new board in it and sent the supply back.
Along with a new board for the other good power supply so they would both match which I
installed myself per Martin Logan’s instructions.

With the CLS power supplies I use Custom Power Cord Company Model 11 Plus Version 2 power
cords. The CLS are on Sound Anchor stands that I got at the time that I rebuilt the speakers. I had
special clamps/brackets made by Mye Stands for the upright arms to the sides of the CLS instead
of drilling into the wood.

On top of the CLS power supplies I have a type of sorbathane material and then cinder blocks
that are like a sandwich four blocks thick to anchor the speakers and the stands to the floor. And
the stands have Martin Logan stainless steel ETC spikes that are high mass. The stands are factory
filled from Sound Anchor.

As a tip for filling stands Sound Anchor uses coal slag to fill not shot. This stuff is way
more dense has no dust and not harmful to humans. It can be had at building centers.

EC-22 Crossover Boards

The Bi-Amp Setup

The bi-amp setup is recent addition. I had the McIntosh MC-452 amp from a summer experiment.
I decided to put it to good use after I bought a pair of Magnepan 1.6QR. I used the speaker’s full
range until they were broken in. What I decided to do was to bi-amp using them as they just do not
have the presence of vividness that an electrostatic speaker does. So I added them in with the
Martin Logan CLS IIZ’s.


I am using an Audio Research EC-22 electronic crossover with this setup. I have the ESL’s running
100hz on up thru the hi- pass output of the crossover. And use the low outputs to the MC-452 to
the Magnepan's for the bass 300hz on down. The MC-452 is on a large PAD base with 8 Sold Tech
IsoClear’s under it to float its weight.

For speaker cables to the Magnepan’s from the Mac I am using a pair of Purist Audio Design 25th Anniversary
and man are they something. These are a 8 gauge all silver cable that is not bright at all and has excellent bass.
The cable is like a total system upgrade. One of the very best things I have ever heard.

The EC-22 was something that I happened upon right when I needed it. One of reported 100 made.
It is an all discreet solid state crossover originally intended for use with the Magnepan MG-20.1 speaker.
But can be used with anything that requires a 100HZ low pass. This crossover has bass attenuation
in coarse and fine with dual control for each channel on the front.

All interconnect cables from the EC-22 to the amps are Purist Audio Aqueous Luminist. This maintains
the continuity between the cables from the preamp to the crossover. I really like these new
Aqueous Luminist they have a clarity and dimensionality that is an upgrade from the older
Purist Aqueous which I still like alot.

The power cord to McIntosh MC-452 is a Elrod EPS3 Signature which seems to work really
well for bass. And the CLS's are back on Sound Anchor stands. Pictures are not current.
Tube Traps are in a different arrangement too.

Audio Research EC-22 Crossover

I use Cable Elevators made out of ceramic for the power cables to the amps and the speakers.
These make some of the most dramatic difference in sound. TAS was right about them.
I have set of Hemingway glass insulators supporting my speaker cables.

The listening room is my living room it’s an open concept room with 8 foot ceilings and is 16 wide
by about 27 feet long and has an open pass thru to the kitchen and then widens about halfway
on one side to an open stairway to the basement. One side of the room has a window and I
have some glass picture frames on the same wall. To counteract this I have a built in bookcase on
the other side of the room that compensates for the other side. And the side with the window and the
glass wall frames is also the long side and the front end equipment is there. The CD player and
tuners sit on top of low cabinets filled with records. The bookcase on the other side is filled with
records on the bottom two shelves and then books on the rest of the shelves all the way up to the ceiling.

I have the speakers about 5 feet away from the back wall end of the room that is 16 feet wide.
They are slightly off center (just a couple inches to one side) to kill standing waves but this is not
noticeable by looking at it. The speakers are about 3 feet from the side walls.

The side walls 4 feet from the ceiling down are covered with SONEX and then paper acoustic
ceiling panel on top of the sheetrock behind the Sonex and this wraps all the way around the
walls into the corner where I have a panel beveled in the corner and then continues to the wall
behind the speaker. There is a 4 inch thick ASC panel on top of the wall at the ceiling level
beveled above the window between the speakers. There are blinds over the windows.

Solid Tech Corian & Steel Bases

There are two 42x13 ASC Tube Traps stacked in the corners behind the speakers with one of
the bottom reflective side out and the one on the top reflective side in. Then there is one 48x13
capped ASC Super Tube Trap against the wall behind the speakers slightly off center between the
speakers reflective side out and another at the wall behind me. There are eight 36 inch tall
ASC Half Rounds put together back to back on custom made bases. Along with an additonal pair
of 11.5 x 48's flanking the super trap in the center for greater dimensionality and focus. I use
Tube Traps to make the room as incoherent as possible and to create even more bass without
side effects like bass boom by careful placement. The Tube Traps are very effective and well
worth every penny.

There is one listening chair in the middle of the room about 8 feet from the speakers. And a couple
of small chairs near the central chair off to the sides with one unusable and a couple of tables
and lamps. By the speakers I have a very large plant on each side on the floor to do more
diffusion and scattering. There is a thick rug on top of the carpet between the speakers and the
listening chair for even more damping.

Martin Logan CLS IIZ Speakers with Atma-Sphere MA-1 Amps Original Setup

================================================== ===========
================================================== ===========

Additionally there is a metal adjustable support column (post that they use in basements)
under my floor with a some 2x4’s as a beam on top supporting the floor under the turntable and
stand to stop flexing of the wood floor in the living room about 3 foot out from the outside
wall. This is strategically positioned under the turntable stand in the listening room.

The amps and speakers are on a separate 15 amp circuit. I use FIM outlets here at the wall
along with Pass and Seymour's. I upgraded and installed Hubble quad stainless steel wall
plates with these new outlets for good measure.

I have concluded that the FIM 880 outlets are rounded sounding, have better bass and sound
harmonically richer than the competition I have tried. May add two more FIM's to the
BPT 2.5 Signature.

Primarily listening is classical and jazz on LP and my other listening is classical FM MPR on
88.1 Rochester MN and 88.9 NPR in La Crosse.


8-12-12 I am now adding eight 9 inch x 36" Half Round ASC Tube Traps working them gradually
into the room along with two 24x24 by 2" ATS panels to the back wall. I had black plexiglass
bases and tops made for the Half Round Tube Traps to put them together to use as Full Rounds.
The advantage here being that they will be reflective on two sides instead of one side for even
more diffusion or absorbtion depending upon how they are facing. Incoherency equals control.

2-12-13 New pair of ASC Tube Traps. A pair of 11.5 by 48 to increase room incoherency.

5-2-13 McIntosh MC 452 here now. Using this to drive Magnepan 1.6 bass panels in combo with the CLS.

7-19-13 Added 90's style welded Target rack.

1-18-14 Magnepan 1.6QR. Using these are bass panels below 100HZ and running the CLS full range.
Biamping with Audio Research EC 22 with the MC 452 on the Magnepans and Atma-Sphere MA-1's on
the CLS IIZ's.

3-20-14 Got McIntosh MR-71 tube tuner. Like new only a few flaws. Works as new and sound like Living Stereo. WOW!

5-10-14 Added Stillpoint Mini Ultra's under the preamp. Moved the Aureos to under the preamp power supply.

8-1-14 Added Elrod EPS3 power cord to Mac 302. These ribbon power cords sure make a difference in the sound of the bass.

12-3-14 Added Sound Anchor stand to the Magnepan speakers. More massive and cleaner sound with greater dimension. These add a lot of mass to the speaker but are really no stronger than the stock stands. One benefit for sure is that the SA stand allows the speaker to be spiked to the floor. I got some 3/8 to 1/4" camera thread adaptors so will mess around with different types of spikes and cones to find out which works best.

Last edited by Triodeotl; 02-27-2016 at 03:44 PM. Reason: McIntosh MR-71 Tuner
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:56 PM
2fastdriving's Avatar
2fastdriving 2fastdriving is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 5,395

Wow, that's a helluva first post! Welcome to AA!

Audio Research Ref6, GS150 / Esoteric K-01X, G-02X, E-03 / Wilson Alexia / Clearaudio Ovation with Universal Tonearm / Lyra Kleos / Transparent Reference Gen5 / Shunyata Denali 6000S V2, Sigma USB, Clock50, Sigma and Alpha HC PC's / HRS S3 Isolation bases / Roon, Tidal Intel NUC / Vicoustics, GIK Acoustics panels
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Old 02-12-2014, 05:12 PM
-E-'s Avatar
-E- -E- is offline
Media Server Aficionado

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: East Bay SF, CA
Posts: 6,934

Damn, what Marc said. Seriously well thought out banger right there.

Looks like you spent a tremendous amount of time and effort to get precisely what you wanted out of that room. Congratulations.

Welcome to AA.
Main: McIntosh XRT1K MDA1000 MC402 | JL F113 | Bryston BUC-1 | WireWorld Cabling | RGPC1200C | PPP
Office: Bel Canto S300iu 24/96 | KEF LS50 | REL R218 | WW Mini Eclipse | 18 TB Media Server
Mobile: McIntosh MX406 MDA5000 MCD4000 MCC420M | JM Lab/Focal Utopia
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Old 02-12-2014, 05:23 PM
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Bikeman71 Bikeman71 is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Pollock Pines, CA
Posts: 383

Wow! Just wow!
Equipment: McIntosh MC302, McIntosh MX121, Franco Serblin Accordo, Oppo 105 Darbee Modwright, Running Springs Haley
Cables: Wireworld Gold Eclipse speaker, Wireworld Gold Eclipse Interconnects, Wireworld Silver Power Cords
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:35 PM
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Alberto Alberto is offline
Chief Toneologist
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 2,174

Awesome setup and a write-up worthy of it.

Welcome to AA.

Sources: Thorens TD125 ii + SME 3009 + Clearaudio Maestro, McIntosh MDA1000 + MCD201, Sonos
Amplification and Speakers: McIntosh C34V->McIntosh MC250->Tannoy Sandringham
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:41 PM
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Still-One Still-One is online now
It is turned down!!!!

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Milford, MI
Posts: 31,755

Welcome to AA Triodeot

That is very nice system you have out together. It looks like a lot of thought went into the process.

AMP's: Momentum M-400's
Pre-amp: D'Agostino Momentum HD
Digital:dCS Vivaldi DAC, Clock & Upsampler
Analog:SME 20/3 , Esoteric E-03, Benz Ruby
Speakers: Wilson Alexandria X2 Series 2
Cables: Transparent Opus Speaker & Interconnects & Power Cords
Cables on Digital Shunyata
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:45 PM
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edkoz edkoz is online now
Senior Member

Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: north/western ny
Posts: 1,140

WOW Just incredible!
2 Channel - Esoteric KO3, VPI Classic, C2300, MS300, MEN220, Bryston 7b SST, B&W 802D, JL F113 (2), MDA 1000, Olive 4HD, Sonos w/Remedy, WW Silver Eclipse ICs , Stillpoints Ultra mini, MR85 tuner, Aurender A10 server

Headphone listening
- Audeze LCD3 with Moon Audio Black Dragon Balanced cables, Sennheiser HD650, WW silver Eclipse Nano cable, Bryston BHA-1 amp

HT -
MX135, OPPO 103D, B&W CDM7, B&W center, Sony 65" LCD
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:52 PM
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maxsmart maxsmart is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: May 2009
Location: SE suburb of Cleveland, OH
Posts: 623

First, welcome Triodeotl

Second, I think we may need some sort of recognition for the best first post!!!!!

Noticed you joined months earlier.... did it take you this long to write your first (excellent) post? (Just my terrible humor)
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:16 PM
Triodeotl Triodeotl is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Midwest
Posts: 25

All Tube Analog System

Thank you,

I have been on here looking around since last summer when i had some Sonus faber Venere 3.0 setup. I could not figure out how to post anything till today. With some help my account is now active so I can post. Glad that all enjoy what I put here. Will likely post some LP reviews in the future and maybe some capsule reviews of new additions to the system or things that I tried out to hear how it sounds.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:27 PM
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jdandy jdandy is online now
Merry Christmas to all

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: North Central Florida
Posts: 53,204

Triodeotl.......Welcome to Audio Aficionado.

That was a tremendous first effort and appreciated.

STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A
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