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Just fired up my first ever Hifi set-up. It's OK?


Major Contributor
Oct 10, 2020
Sweden - Слава Україні
For lack of better language, the "brightness" is almost more felt than heard.

I figured that would be the most appropriate set up but it just doesn't work for the family dynamic and the play/dance space (3.5 and 5 y.o kiddos).

The salesman from the distributor I bought the Chora's from swears by burn in, but I really don't know. He said running the speakers with tubes would probably help, like a Vincent hybrid or Primaluna. Just going from what I glean here and there, the rule of thumb is to spend most of your budget on the speakers and less on electronics. He said he job is to avoid a return, so he was focusing on electronics (at least being honest). He was also suggesting a Naim. Their bread and butter is Primaluna with Focal(Aria and up)/Tannoy/Klipsch.

I'm eyeing Ascend Acoustics as a speaker replacement, they're just 30 mins down the freeway. Might even just audition first to get some idea what a proper system sounds like.

Originally was heading Genelec route but my wife thinks standmounts look like droid robots. Her words were, "I feel like I'm going to wake up and that thing is going to be in the bedroom staring at me" (shrug emoji)

This is awesome and hilarious thinking about having a killer system with an $80 amp and 57 year old speakers.

Yes. The noise isn't really an issue. It was just when I first switched things up on one song.

Not sure what I'm listening for TBH. Like I said earlier, it was simply a matter of "I don't want to listen anymore because it's physically uncomfortable.

There's really not much crackle. I think we can disregard the crackle issue for now. It was on an older track for the first time I took out the preamp. Most music sounds fine with respect to static, crackle, background noise. I'm going to pin up some fabrics behind my couch and see how that affects things. There's a floor carpet between me and the speakers and we have some tapestries various walls, so there is a bit of mix of absorptive/reflective, just not so much on the back listening wall.

Thanks for the tip, I was going to look into Volumio dsp options next.

I wish. I also don't have a headphone amp in the system.

No, everything can only be one way. It may be that Topping want's it that way? The preamp is working. Again, I don't think the noise is really an issue.


Thank you all for the effort at helping me out! :) I really appreciate it. Gonna try a little room treatment on the back wall and play with speaker pleacement more. I think the best thing I can do is see about an audition at Ascend Acoustics just to know what a good system should sound like. Possibly ordering a miniDSP flex just to see how that changes things. Playing with some DSP in Volumio. Learning a bit more about speaker placement (McGowan's book). Letting the speakers run as much as possible as a superstition about "break-in" or "ear training". Ultimately getting another pair of speakers in here as a comparison would likely give me the most peace of mind.
Forget this with fixing equipment.. amplifiers that is, for them to fix the sound of your speakers. Just forget it right away. It is doomed to fail.

EQ maybe BUT you don't EQ speakers into absurdity. The speakers themselves should be something you like from the start.Buy speakers that have sensible FR, power/SPL, dispersion and low enough distortion that you like after that you can fine tune, EQ, if you think you need it.

Sorry,.. but if you don't like your speakers, just sell them and buy new ones. You can't get around that.
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Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Aug 14, 2019
Sweden, Västerås
Test with EQ is a good way to experience some of what what a better response would do . Especially if you can get it for free.
But not all of it depending on directivity properties of his speakers EQ migth not work as well as it could
Sep 25, 2022
I’m new to “hifi” also. I recently got a pair of Revel m106’s and I am extremely happy with them. They’re extremely clear and can get stupidly loud with zero distortion. They also have surprisingly fantastic bass as well. I would return those Focals and try the f206’s which I’m sure sound amazing considering how good my m106’s sound. Speakers are most important, then make sure your amp produces recommended power, then room acoustics, and most everything else is snake oil nonsense.
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