Main System 9 – May 2023
Below is a quick summary of the Main System as it was in May 2023.
The main change from the last incarnation is that I removed the turntable and phono stage to focus solely on digital with this system. Along with this, the Antipodes K50 was exchanged for the OLADRA.
The core of the main system consists of the CH Precision C1 DAC, L1 preamp, A1.5 power amp with the Grimm MU1, Antipodes K50, and Taiko Audio Extreme servers as main sources, and Magico S1 MkII speakers. All interlinks are Driade Flow Link Reference 808, both balanced and unbalanced. The speaker cables are the Driade Flow Reference 808.
The core components are placed on Artesania Exoteryc racks with Carbon Fiber Linear Arms. The MU1, as well as most review components, are placed on an Artesania KSH2 Krion shelf that couples via Artesania Carbon Fiber Linear arms to an Artesania Aire Floor Platform. The Aire is basically a lower Exoteryc rack and it sounds identical.
The power for this system is delivered by a dedicated run of solid-core installation wire, sourced in the Breaker Box from a Siemens Sitor Cylindric Fuse Cartridge, and ending in three GigaWatt G-044 single Schuko Wall Sockets behind the audio system. I use three metal-cased power distributors, one for the main system, one for analog, and one for review components. The power distributors have a shielded metal case and use simple linear brass strip conductors but they work predictably and provide solid connections.
Magico S1 MkII
CH Precision C1
Aqua Formula xHD
Grimm Audio MU1
Taiko Audio Extreme
Network Renderer / Streaming Endpoint
Record Cleaning Machine
Clearaudio Matrix Silent
Driade Flow Link Reference 808 RCA and XLR
Driade Flow Reference 808
Mad Scientist Black Magic
Final Touch Audio Sinope
ValueLine OEM CAT6 cables
Audio Group Power Installation
Siemens Sitor Cylindric Fuse Cartridge with standard silver-plated fuse for live and solid silver rod for neutral
GigaWatt G-044 Schuko Wall Socket (three in use)
Standard unshielded 2,5mm solid core copper installation wire
3x Popp/Eurolite 8-fold Power Distributor (one for the main system, one for the analog section, and one for review components)
GigaWatt LC-2 EVO (CH C1 DAC and Aqua LinQ)
GigaWatt PowerSync ULTRA (CH L1)
Final Touch Audio Elara (Aqua Diva M2)
Belden 19364 with Bals schuko and Oyaide 004 connectors (Remaining components)
Artesania Exoteryc Audiorack
Artesania Carbon Fiber Linear Arm Upgrade
Artesania Aire Floor Platform
Artesania Organic Line Modular Rack
Artesania Organic Line Modular Floor Platform
Artesania ISDIWB Beech Wood Isolation Discs
Artesania Digital Server Platform
Artesania KSH2 Krion shelves
Ansuz Darkz T2S
Finite Elemente Cerapuc and Ceraball Universal
Mad Scientist BlackPod Ceramic Mini
R.T.F.S. Big Block
R.T.F.S. Ceiling Vane
Hard Wood Stiffening Bars glued onto the windows
The story of my most recent room acoustics improvements is intended for a new installment in the HFA Setup History. Alas, I have yet to find the time to write it as I have to prioritize regular reviews. In short: each of the 8 ceiling-to-floor glass window sections has 4 horizontal hardwood bars glued on using Bison Polymax kit. These bars are then stabilized using thick wood bars that are screwed into the left and right frames. What this achieved is a strong reduction of the glass panels’ 40Hz resonance that killed much of the right speaker’s low output and also introduced very annoying phase effects at higher bass frequencies.
All HFA Reference equipment and accessories frequently used for reviews: Associated Equipment
Overview of all Setup Snapshots
In-depth overview of how the HFA systems developed over the years: HFA Audio Setup History
Ranking Order of reviewed components with appointed Awards: HFA Awards page