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Help for Newbie with system

MaxBuck

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Hi, all. I'm just getting back into listening to music - moved to a new place with existing architectural speakers in 4 rooms and mechanical switchbox and nothing else. All I have of my old stereo system is an Adcom GFP-750 preamp, so starting essentially from scratch.

My objectives are these:
  1. Get background music available at reasonable (not hifi) quality in the 4 rooms
  2. Have a high-quality system for "critical" listening in my main family room, which is a large chamber about 20 ft square by 18 ft high; also with large openings into other rooms (we have a very open floorplan home)
  3. Source will be limited to what I have on hand (maybe 120 CDs) and high-resolution streaming such as Tidal Masters, Amazon HD or other similar online source
My current thinking is this:
  • For distributed speakers, replace existing crap speakers with Martin-Logan IC8 models (heard 'em, liked 'em)
  • Drive speakers with Monoprice 6 Zone Home Audio Multizone Controller and Amplifier
  • For critical listening, KEF R3 or LS50 Metas, augmented by subwoofer(s) - also hope to audition some other speakers when I travel to the Bay Area later this month
  • Drive KEFs (or whatevers) with a Purifi Eigentakt power amp; currently looking at NAD C298 and VTV (Dirac room correction on the NAD seems like a good idea)
  • Use same front-end (streamer, DAC and preamp) for both the critical-listening and housewide background
Does this seem like a realistic plan? Can I use my GFP-750 as the preamp and expect good performance? Do I need to buy a purpose-built streamer like Bluesound Node 2i, or would an Android tablet run into a good DAC like the Gustard X16 be just as good? I plan to run Cat-6 directly from my cable modem to the streamer if I go that route; would be pure wifi if I use the tablet.

Lots to piece out here! I will certainly be doing the patreon thingie for ASR, as I've learned an immense amount in a short time (but as is obvious, still ignorant).
 

abdo123

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The KEF R3 performs a little bit better than the LS50 Meta.

Is your family an iOS gang or an Android gang?
 
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MaxBuck

MaxBuck

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The KEF R3 performs a little bit better than the LS50 Meta.

Is your family an iOS gang or an Android gang?
My wife is pure iOS, and I'm Android and Windows. But I suppose I can go either way; problem is that she likely won't use the systems either way, and if we went iOS I'd need to buy something new just for the purpose, while I have some old Android tablets/phones I could repurpose. I'm fed up with her listening to music on a crap clock radio or her iPad speaker!
 

abdo123

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MaxBuck

MaxBuck

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Bump. Still wondering about all these questions.
 
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MaxBuck

MaxBuck

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No interest from the members here for whatever reason.

I'm now pretty well decided on a Bluesound Node as my streamer, input to my Adcom GFP-750 preamp and then to either the NAD C298 or VTV Eigentakt power amp (Benchmark AHB2 still a possibility) driving KEF R11s. I figure I can insert a Gustard DAC in future should the internal DAC of the Node be unsatisfactory. Monoprice multichannel amp off the Adcom preamp for audio to the remainder of the house; probably will continue to use existing speakers for the time being.

Comments are welcome, though apparently unlikely.
 

gsp1971

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Hi MaxBuck, you can't go wrong with the KEF R-series. The KEF R3 has been measured on ASR very favorably, so I would not assume the higher models in the R-series perform any different. Just double-check whether the R11s are perhaps too big for your listening space.

Your shortlist of power amps is also top drawer, although there is quite a price difference between the NAD C298 and the Benchmark AHB2. The latter has the best SINAD measurement from all amps measured on ASR.

I am sure you will enjoy your system for years to come.
 
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MaxBuck

MaxBuck

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My listening space is almost 6,000 cu ft, so I think I need speakers the size of the R11s to provide sufficient "oomph." Perhaps others will provide their views? :) As for enjoying for years to come, I anticipate this system will last me the remainder of my years on the sunny side of the grass.
 

GD Fan

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Congrats, that sounds like a hell of a system. Don't be afraid to post a photo or two.

Happy listening.
 
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