Dutch Duplex build log and impressions

Great work!

Maybe I missed it, but what XO are you using?

Hi @oface, thanks for the comments! I'm using the Werner Jagusch xo's based on his autotransformers. I'm pretty happy with them!

Solid looking build @Thijs! It sounds to me like you know what you need to do. Have you experimented with damping yet? It seems you have used more than what is used in my Bisons, though the materials are different. Did you change the runs from crossover to speaker? What crossover are you using? Cabinets and crossover make or break these drivers.

I agree, the GPA604 drivers are very nice indeed, when implemented well, which might not be easy. I've been looking for alternatives and a "better" set of compromises, for me, are not easily found. The midbass driver is especially good for SETs - better on paper than the 414 and 416 IMO, if you can put them in big enough cabs. Still, I'd like to try the 414 with an AMT mounted in a waveguide with minimal crossover...

I have not had to tweak my Bisons much at all. Perhaps my expectations are different and/or my points of reference fewer and I (happily) don't know what I'm missing. The builder of my Bisons was familiar with the MLTL alignment and its tuning so maybe that is part of it - they do sound decent to me.

Altec engineers designed their cabinets at a certain point in time, for a specific purpose, with perhaps different constraints to our current builds for domestic use. Classic Altec cabinets/methods can probably sound quite good. When planning my build I started with what I wanted to achieve then collaborated on how that might be achieved within various constraints - it didn’t lead to an Altec solution.

That is JMO based on limited experience.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, @shoshin! I have yet to experiment with the damping material inside the cabinet as I have been enjoying them as they are for quite some time now. They sound pretty great actually! In the next few months I might set aside some time to experiment with different damping material and thickness too.

How are you enjoying your speakers @Thijs ? Any tweaks/adjustments?
Also curious about your other system components.

Hey @Audionut , good to see you here!
The main tweaks I've implemented were mainly position based changes. Speaker position as well as listening position.
Even though I still feel like I miss some of that startling macro dynamic qualities these speaker should be capable of, they are highly satisfying. They are large, sure, but they are so composed and natural sounding. Nothing really stands out and I can listen to them for hours. Bass is very satisfactory too. They come in strongly at around 25hz and it never sounds bloated or boomy. I do have a dip around 60hz on the right speaker which is due to room geometry. The peak at low bass (below 60hz) is probably also caused by room dimensions, however it doesn't sound unnatural to me. Others changes were done to the amp I use, the Bottlehead Stereomour II. I've installed several factory upgrades and they elevated the sound to a new level. Really happy with the improvement they bring to the table in terms of dynamics and imaging, placement of voices and instruments etc.

Also, sometimes I feel like things can sound a little congested. Even while typing this it sounds exaggerated and I can't exactly put into words what I hear but it's like up until a certain amount of complexity in the music, it sounds great. Like with (live) jazz trios, blues and less stringent music. Orchestral or some rock music seems to lose its coherency and things start to sound congested or homogenized. It's not a huge deal but I do feel there is something to be gained here. This might also be the speakers showing the limitations of my (source) components. At least I hope they are :)

Rest of the system consists of:
Analog source - Thorens TD126 MKIII with DC motor and Mission 774LC arm (Basically a rebranded entry-level Jelco arm) with the Dynavector 20x2H cartridge.
Digital source - Bluesound Node2 using its internal DAC
Phono amp - Bottlehead Eros
Intergrated amp - Bottlehead 2a3 with all available upgrades as well as JJ 2a3-40 and GEC A2900 tubes.

The Thorens does 'win' on sheer musicality and enjoyment of my system. It might even sound objectively better in many cases, however the difference is not huge. Certainly not huge enough to justify the added cost of vinyl playback. Right now I'm working on a Lenco L75 heavy plinth turntable which will be fitted with the Audiomods series 6 arm. I'm thinking this will be a significant upgrade from the Thorens setup and I'm very curious to hear how it sounds. Until that time I can't make definite judgements on any of the above but I'm enjoying the pursuit nonetheless.

Hope this answers your questions and feel free to ask more or chime in with your advice. Always welcome! :D

Cheers,
Thijs
 

Audionut

Next Round Is On Me
Hi @oface, thanks for the comments! I'm using the Werner Jagusch xo's based on his autotransformers. I'm pretty happy with them!



Thanks for sharing your thoughts, @shoshin! I have yet to experiment with the damping material inside the cabinet as I have been enjoying them as they are for quite some time now. They sound pretty great actually! In the next few months I might set aside some time to experiment with different damping material and thickness too.



Hey @Audionut , good to see you here!
The main tweaks I've implemented were mainly position based changes. Speaker position as well as listening position.
Even though I still feel like I miss some of that startling macro dynamic qualities these speaker should be capable of, they are highly satisfying. They are large, sure, but they are so composed and natural sounding. Nothing really stands out and I can listen to them for hours. Bass is very satisfactory too. They come in strongly at around 25hz and it never sounds bloated or boomy. I do have a dip around 60hz on the right speaker which is due to room geometry. The peak at low bass (below 60hz) is probably also caused by room dimensions, however it doesn't sound unnatural to me. Others changes were done to the amp I use, the Bottlehead Stereomour II. I've installed several factory upgrades and they elevated the sound to a new level. Really happy with the improvement they bring to the table in terms of dynamics and imaging, placement of voices and instruments etc.

Also, sometimes I feel like things can sound a little congested. Even while typing this it sounds exaggerated and I can't exactly put into words what I hear but it's like up until a certain amount of complexity in the music, it sounds great. Like with (live) jazz trios, blues and less stringent music. Orchestral or some rock music seems to lose its coherency and things start to sound congested or homogenized. It's not a huge deal but I do feel there is something to be gained here. This might also be the speakers showing the limitations of my (source) components. At least I hope they are :)

Rest of the system consists of:
Analog source - Thorens TD126 MKIII with DC motor and Mission 774LC arm (Basically a rebranded entry-level Jelco arm) with the Dynavector 20x2H cartridge.
Digital source - Bluesound Node2 using its internal DAC
Phono amp - Bottlehead Eros
Intergrated amp - Bottlehead 2a3 with all available upgrades as well as JJ 2a3-40 and GEC A2900 tubes.

The Thorens does 'win' on sheer musicality and enjoyment of my system. It might even sound objectively better in many cases, however the difference is not huge. Certainly not huge enough to justify the added cost of vinyl playback. Right now I'm working on a Lenco L75 heavy plinth turntable which will be fitted with the Audiomods series 6 arm. I'm thinking this will be a significant upgrade from the Thorens setup and I'm very curious to hear how it sounds. Until that time I can't make definite judgements on any of the above but I'm enjoying the pursuit nonetheless.

Hope this answers your questions and feel free to ask more or chime in with your advice. Always welcome! :D

Cheers,
Thijs
With that component list you have the ingredients for making great music! I’d say you are 90% there. Feel free to share some system pics too.
 

MrEd

Senior Nobody
I predict you will find success with the Lenco.
It should compliment your system well.
Love the cabinet work.
 
Hi @Thijs, the way you describe your MLTLs has them sounding rather like the Bisons.

I also experience congestion at high levels - it tends to be with music lacking dynamic range played louder than I'm generally comfortable with. I don't listen to much classical - I might have to play some at high volume to see if I have the same effect. Many things could factor into that: speakers, room, amplifiers (excessive H2 distortion), source...

Regarding source, I have thought my system sounded a bit dull, distant and not so vibrant for the last few years. My (not inexpensive!) music server has been increasingly incapable of running Roon Server (and now won't start) and the manufacturer suggested I run LMS. Noticeable improvement - less congestion with greater musical expression and vitality with simply more going on with no apparent negatives. Nice.

Edit: I guess my point is that there could be mutliple factors at play... there seems to be some correlation in sound between our systems, which have only a few things in common, speakers being the obvious thing (similar, but not same). Remembering that correlation != causation, congestion could be a speaker-related issue, or not.

Take care and best of fortune - keep us informed.
 
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oface

Junior Member
Hi @oface, thanks for the comments! I'm using the Werner Jagusch xo's based on his autotransformers. I'm pretty happy with them!



Thanks for sharing your thoughts, @shoshin! I have yet to experiment with the damping material inside the cabinet as I have been enjoying them as they are for quite some time now. They sound pretty great actually! In the next few months I might set aside some time to experiment with different damping material and thickness too.



Hey @Audionut , good to see you here!
The main tweaks I've implemented were mainly position based changes. Speaker position as well as listening position.
Even though I still feel like I miss some of that startling macro dynamic qualities these speaker should be capable of, they are highly satisfying. They are large, sure, but they are so composed and natural sounding. Nothing really stands out and I can listen to them for hours. Bass is very satisfactory too. They come in strongly at around 25hz and it never sounds bloated or boomy. I do have a dip around 60hz on the right speaker which is due to room geometry. The peak at low bass (below 60hz) is probably also caused by room dimensions, however it doesn't sound unnatural to me. Others changes were done to the amp I use, the Bottlehead Stereomour II. I've installed several factory upgrades and they elevated the sound to a new level. Really happy with the improvement they bring to the table in terms of dynamics and imaging, placement of voices and instruments etc.

Also, sometimes I feel like things can sound a little congested. Even while typing this it sounds exaggerated and I can't exactly put into words what I hear but it's like up until a certain amount of complexity in the music, it sounds great. Like with (live) jazz trios, blues and less stringent music. Orchestral or some rock music seems to lose its coherency and things start to sound congested or homogenized. It's not a huge deal but I do feel there is something to be gained here. This might also be the speakers showing the limitations of my (source) components. At least I hope they are :)

Rest of the system consists of:
Analog source - Thorens TD126 MKIII with DC motor and Mission 774LC arm (Basically a rebranded entry-level Jelco arm) with the Dynavector 20x2H cartridge.
Digital source - Bluesound Node2 using its internal DAC
Phono amp - Bottlehead Eros
Intergrated amp - Bottlehead 2a3 with all available upgrades as well as JJ 2a3-40 and GEC A2900 tubes.

The Thorens does 'win' on sheer musicality and enjoyment of my system. It might even sound objectively better in many cases, however the difference is not huge. Certainly not huge enough to justify the added cost of vinyl playback. Right now I'm working on a Lenco L75 heavy plinth turntable which will be fitted with the Audiomods series 6 arm. I'm thinking this will be a significant upgrade from the Thorens setup and I'm very curious to hear how it sounds. Until that time I can't make definite judgements on any of the above but I'm enjoying the pursuit nonetheless.

Hope this answers your questions and feel free to ask more or chime in with your advice. Always welcome! :D

Cheers,
Thijs


Nice setup!

I used some paramours with my old 604's and I experienced the congestion you described as well with more complex music when I raised the volume.

Do you happen to have another amp that you can install?

Also, do you experience this congestion during LP playback and/or when your streaming?

If it's during LP playback, I'd double triple check the alignment of your analog setup....

If it's in your streaming setup, I'd look at maybe offloading the music to an off board DAC.

Also, I'd consider maybe off loading the lf's to a sub too......


What about your room's acoustics /sound treatment? Have they been addressed?
 
Hi all, for those who are interested there has been an interesting development in the past few days.

The issues I was experiencing were mostly source related, so it seems. It took a while to complete the Lenco (covid, extreme workloads etc) but now that it's up and running it's like everything suddenly 'clicked'. Everything sounds so lifelike and dynamic with great presence. Basically most if not all shortcomings I noted earlier in the first post are now remedied. I also built some room treatment, bass traps in front corners and side wall reflection points. Need to tackle the slanted wall behind me still which show up clearly on the ETC measurements. Will get to that next month probably.

Some fine tuning is in order but I could very happily live with this system. With the Lenco running I feel the 604's have met their match and can now truly shine. It's not a bog standard Lenco I must say... upgraded the platter bearing, new idler wheel, heavy plinth, and an Audiomods 10.5'' series six arm carrying a Dynavector 20x2. Sure sounds nice.

Cheers,
Thijs
 
Hi all, for those who are interested there has been an interesting development in the past few days.

The issues I was experiencing were mostly source related, so it seems. It took a while to complete the Lenco (covid, extreme workloads etc) but now that it's up and running it's like everything suddenly 'clicked'. Everything sounds so lifelike and dynamic with great presence. Basically most if not all shortcomings I noted earlier in the first post are now remedied. I also built some room treatment, bass traps in front corners and side wall reflection points. Need to tackle the slanted wall behind me still which show up clearly on the ETC measurements. Will get to that next month probably.

Some fine tuning is in order but I could very happily live with this system. With the Lenco running I feel the 604's have met their match and can now truly shine. It's not a bog standard Lenco I must say... upgraded the platter bearing, new idler wheel, heavy plinth, and an Audiomods 10.5'' series six arm carrying a Dynavector 20x2. Sure sounds nice.

Cheers,
Thijs
Great to hear Thijs!

Not surprised your source made a difference - they can be musically sensitive beasts. I noticed unexpected, musically-relevant differences between Roon and LMS; I was thinking that the sound was generally a bit uninteresting until I made the change.
 

Audionut

Next Round Is On Me
Good stuff! You might motivate me to dig back into my td160....
The 604’s are accurate studio monitors and put out what you put in. The better source material you feed them, the better they sound. Happy listening!
 

MrEd

Senior Nobody
Congratulations.
Always nice to have things come together and reach another level of musical joy.
Post up your lenco build, or if you are LH member and have it there share a link.
 
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Great to hear Thijs!

Not surprised your source made a difference - they can be musically sensitive beasts. I noticed unexpected, musically-relevant differences between Roon and LMS; I was thinking that the sound was generally a bit uninteresting until I made the change.
Thanks for your reply @shoshin! You're build has always served as an inspiration to me. Yes, you are right about them being sensitive to the source. And the rest of the chain for that matter. I'm happy to hear you've got yours sorted too. Uninteresting is exactly the word I would use to describe the way things were before.

Good stuff! You might motivate me to dig back into my td160....
The 604’s are accurate studio monitors and put out what you put in. The better source material you feed them, the better they sound. Happy listening!
Hey there @Audionut! How have you been? Thanks for checking in with me. You're absolutely right about input = output. Let me know how things go with the Thorens if you ever decide to move ahead with that project.

Congratulations.
Airways nice to have things come together and reach another level of musical joy.
Post up your lenco build, or if you are LH member and have it there share a link.
Much appreciated @mred. You weren't joking when you replied last year saying the Lenco would fit the bill nicely... I'm so glad I went ahead with that project! It's not quite finished. The project had come to a grinding halt over the past year after which I suddenly realised that all I had left to do was mostly plinth finishing work. As a proof of concept I tried to get it up and running and while unfinished would give me insights into whether it would be worth it to actually finish it completely. Well, yes. Totally worth it so it seems.

Don't have a build thread on LH but will post there eventually when completed. I've attached some pictures below of the current system with some details of the Lenco. The top is veneered walnut and it will be finished the same way as the speaker baffle including the little black rabbet edge. I'll also cover the ply sides with walnut hardwood similar to the amplifier in the shots. Excuse the unfinished bass traps in the corners. ;)

Cheers!

System3.jpg

System4.jpg

System5.jpg

System6.jpg

At night

System7.jpg

System2.jpg
 

MikeyFresh

Moderator
Staff member
I noticed unexpected, musically-relevant differences between Roon and LMS; I was thinking that the sound was generally a bit uninteresting until I made the change.
This is interesting, and you'd hardly be the only one to say this. In fact, some Roon users hear a difference just continuing with the Roon Server, but putting it into Squeeze compatibility mode, and then using Squeezelite endpoints instead of Roon endpoints and RAAT.

I guess it's not all just ones and zeros then.
 

MrEd

Senior Nobody
I did not realize how big the speakers are till looking at you room photos.
No complaint here, they look fab.
Are those GTO caps in your crossovers?
 
I did not realize how big the speakers are till looking at you room photos.
No complaint here, they look fab.
Are those GTO caps in your crossovers?

Yeah, they're pretty large. Though that part of the room has a lower ceiling than usual, around 7 feet. The cabs are 60 inches tall.

In regards to the caps in the crossovers I've got no clue. I've been wanting to figure that out myself and maybe post on here to see who would know what caps these are. They are the Werner Jagusch (Jabo) crossovers with his autotransformers. I've attached a picture that shows them in more detail. All markings on the caps have been removed. The horn section cap looks to be some kind of vintage russian cap but hard to know for sure.

What's your bet?

Cheers!

System8.jpg
 

MrEd

Senior Nobody
Yeah, they're pretty large. Though that part of the room has a lower ceiling than usual, around 7 feet. The cabs are 60 inches tall.

In regards to the caps in the crossovers I've got no clue. I've been wanting to figure that out myself and maybe post on here to see who would know what caps these are. They are the Werner Jagusch (Jabo) crossovers with his autotransformers. I've attached a picture that shows them in more detail. All markings on the caps have been removed. The horn section cap looks to be some kind of vintage russian cap but hard to know for sure.

What's your bet?

Cheers!

View attachment 32526
No not GTO caps
I have heard a lot good comments on his crossovers
 
Wow that is a beautiful bunch of kit, nice work putting that all together I bet it sounds great too 😄. Looks like photography might be a hobby as well...
 

ICTWoody

No longer a junior member
Man. That Audiomods arm is awesome. It’s on my short list for my 2nd arm on one of my Fairchild 412’s. Is that the 10.5” version?

- Woody
 
Wow that is a beautiful bunch of kit, nice work putting that all together I bet it sounds great too 😄. Looks like photography might be a hobby as well...
Thanks Sean! Real happy with how everything turned out. :) Actually, photography is my profession.😄 Assistant photographer to be precise. Thanks :-)

Man. That Audiomods arm is awesome. It’s on my short list for my 2nd arm on one of my Fairchild 412’s. Is that the 10.5” version?

- Woody
Hi Woody, it's the 10.5'' version. I'm really impressed with the arm. I can highly recommend it and Jeff's a great guy to deal with.

Cheers
Thijs
 
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