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Sam Vimes

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About Sam Vimes

  • Rank
    Experienced Wammer

Personal Info

  • Location
    North Yorkshire

Wigwam Info

  • Digital Source 1
  • Integrated Amp
    Yamaha WXA-50
  • My Speakers
    Proac Studio 148
  • Headphones
  • Trade Status
    I am not in the Hi-Fi trade

Recent Profile Visitors

664 profile views
  1. They might, but I couldn't live with it. The neighbours definitely couldn't.
  2. Sam Vimes

    The Yamaha Owners Club

    The longer I have it, the more amazed I am with the little Yamaha WXA-50. It's just been treated to a speaker upgrade, Proac Studio 148s instead of Studio 110s. I really thought I was pushing my luck before, I thought the 148s might be a bridge too far. Their 4 ohm impedance was of particular concern. I know that the amp is supposed to be able to cope with a 4 ohm load, but what about a real world 4 ohm speaker that might drop significantly lower? Several hours in and the WXA-50 hasn't batted an eyelid. I've pretty much got what I hoped for, very similar to before with a large dollop of extra bass. I'm starting to wonder just what speaker crazyness (price and specs) I could throw at the Yam before it gives up?
  3. Over the last six months or so, I've been toying with the idea of adding a sub to my Studio 110s. However, fate, and a seller on here, had other ideas. When some Studio 110s very big brothers, Studio 148s, came up for sale, I thought it might be rude to not give them a whizz. Lots of similarities to the 110s I liked, but with plenty of extra bass. I really don't think I need that subwoofer now.
  4. Sam Vimes

    ProAc Studio 148

    Hello Hydie, safe back home, installed and singing. Thanks very much. Say thanks again to your daughter for me. I think this was definitely a better idea than adding a sub to my Studio 110s. Very similar familial sound, but lashings of extra bottom end.
  5. Sam Vimes

    superfi gone under?

    The last Superfi I visited was in Hull, well over twenty years ago. I'm not entirely sure if I ever bought anything from them. Unless it was cables, I very much doubt it. As far as I know, the Hull branch shut down several years back. They always struck me as being Richer Sounds without the deals.
  6. Sam Vimes

    The Truth About Vinyl - Vinyl vs. Digital

    The whole vinyl vs digital debate is strewn with pitfalls. In many ways, it's quite similar, but even more obvious, than a debate over compressed, red book, and hi-res digital. The biggest pitfall has little to do with the media/file type itself, rather that we have little idea how exactly they've arrived at the end medium/file type. Is it really exactly the same recording that ends up on vinyl, cd or different digital files? What exactly was the original master? Was it ever really hi-res in the first place, or is somebody just upsampling to get the hi-res file. All of that is before you even consider that there may be remastering/remixing going on for different formats. I've little doubt that vinyl sounds different to digital. Whether it always sounds better is a different matter entirely. No doubt that some individuals will consistently prefer a vinyl source to a digital one though. I've also little doubt that there's plenty of hi-res stuff out there that'll sound no different to 16bit 44.1kHz. It's just the same digital information in a bigger bucket. However, I am slowly coming round to the fact that some hi-res stuff does sound better than its red book cousin. The problem being is that you can't be sure if it's because of the format or because an audio engineer has waved his wand over it in some way. Ultimately, all you can really do is please yourself and pick the format that suits you, your equipment, your lifestyle and your ears. However, making that choice does not mean a great deal beyond your own four walls.
  7. Sam Vimes

    Bottom Ported Speakers in a Flat?

    Having had standmounts since the early nineties, I've no idea. However, it looks like I'm going to find out in a couple of weeks. It was either existing speakers and adding a sub or go for bigger speakers. I couldn't quite get over old prejudices to go for the sub, but I did torture myself over it for quite some time. I'm concerned it may be a bad case of bass overload whichever way I went, but it'll be fun finding out.
  8. Sam Vimes

    looking for mark richards

    The name seems familiar to me, but I'm not sure why. However, as I'm a former radar tech, that trained near W-S-M, it's likely to be nothing to do with hi-fi.
  9. Sam Vimes

    Cosmetic Damage

    I'm rather obsessive about my gear. Not allowing anyone but me anywhere near stuff avoids an awful lot of potential damage from prying fingers. However, I've still managed to damage the fascia of an amp all on my own. An upright vacuum cleaner toppled and hit it. I was seriously brassed off with myself. God help anyone with busier households. Kids, partners, friends and relatives that can enter the house and be completely ignorant, disrespectful and cack handed. Little fingers seem to have an incredible propensity for finding tweeter domes. Older people often seem to see speakers as items of furniture and think it's perfectly acceptable to use them to place coffee cups and drinks glasses/cans/bottles on them. All of that is before you factor in the accidental damage, that can happen to absolutely anybody, which often occurs when gear is moved about. The amount of cosmetically damaged gear I see does still surprise me. I'm more amazed by how much damage some think is quite acceptable. Trying to sell "good condition" speakers for top prices when the tweeters are pushed in, corners are dented so badly that you can see MDF and missing veneer, and there's watermark rings on the flat surface.
  10. Sam Vimes

    Searching for a rich vinyl like sound in digital music

    No doubt our age plays a part in our choices, but I actively try not to restrict myself in any way (not that it necessarily works). In all honesty, the "indie" stuff I played to death in my 90s heyday (I'd guess I'm a good decade or so younger than you) goes largely unplayed now. I'm more likely to play more recent music, music from before I was born, or even music that I'd not have considered listening to in the eighties/nineties. The prog fan I had in mind is in his late fifties, loves the 70s stuff, but also kept at it with the likes of Marillion and, more recently, Muse. I'm not trying to suggest they really should be considered as prog, but he seems to. Of anyone I know, I really expected him to have heard of Steven Wilson.
  11. Sam Vimes

    Searching for a rich vinyl like sound in digital music

    Not for one moment do I believe that it's always the case. I know a few music anoraks that have never had anything that I'd consider a remotely reasonable play back system, yet their music collections are vast and include some really obscure stuff. However, whilst by no means restricted to this one artist, I particularly had Steven Wilson (in any of his guises) in mind. A case in point was a mate that I recently met up with at a gig. He's a real obscurist and music collector, but by no means into anything approaching hi-fi. After talking to plenty of friends about Steven Wilson, and finding that none of them, including a few prog nuts, had any clue who he was, I expected this friend to have at least heard of him. He also had absolutely not heard of Steven, Porcupine Tree, Blackfield et al. If you take even a casual look at the "what are you listening to right now?" thread, it would be easy to believe that many people would be at least aware of him. I'm not daft enough to suggest that it's anything close to being conclusive proof, but that's the kind of thing that leads me to believe that our collective love of better replay systems can influence our musical tastes and choices far more than many might realise or admit. I have loads of stuff (not all of it obscure) that I'd simply never have bothered with if it wasn't for hi-fi (mags/demos et al) this place, or others like it, and music/hi-fi nut friends. The flip side of the coin for me is that there are more than a few audiophile staples that I simply can't abide, no matter how testing they may be for a system or how well recorded they are or how well liked they are. I'm looking at you Pink Floyd, I keep trying but I just never get it.
  12. Sam Vimes

    Has vinyl become mainstream?

    I was rather surprised to find a smattering of LPs in my local Tesco recently. With that being the case, there can be little doubt that there has been a resurgence of interest. However, I don't for one moment believe that it's anything close to being mainstream. I can't think of anyone I know that has a dedicated music system, be it separates, midi, micro or even streaming, let alone a record deck. I doubt that they are making many sales outside of fairly tight groups, audiophiles, completist collectors, hipsters, and bedroom DJs.
  13. Sam Vimes

    Searching for a rich vinyl like sound in digital music

    Time and finances dictate that Kegworth is a most unlikely prospect for me. I gave the Harrogate thing a good coat of looking at, even toying with the idea of taking a room to demonstrate in. However, I bottled it and then even managed to forget it was on.
  14. Sam Vimes

    Searching for a rich vinyl like sound in digital music

    I fully accept that there can be a middle ground. Hopefully, that's exactly what I've ended up with. However, by plucking those two aspects of a full post out (and mixing them up) you are missing the point entirely. I don't give a damn if those that like things that are genuinely high fidelity do find my gear dull and boring. It's the other side of the coin of me finding so much of what I've been told is genuine hi-fi utterly intolerable. I simply don't care for "hi-fi", I just don't want any gear that renders parts of the collection of music I have unlistenable. It becomes a bad case of tail wagging dog.
  15. Sam Vimes

    Searching for a rich vinyl like sound in digital music

    I fully accept the narrow dictionary definition of "high fidelity". I essentially gave up on buying "hi-fi" gear years ago. So much of what I'm told is good "hi-fi" sounds bloody awful to me. Some of the rest is headache inducing and painful. I don't much care for music sounding dry, overly analytic and sibilant, even if some idiot in the music business genuinely intended it to sound that way. I've no doubt that those that prefer the "hi-fi" sound, that I just can't live with, will think my set up sounds dull and boring. That's fine with me, they aren't sitting in my front room. I reckon that my old penchant for late eighties/early nineties indie has shaped my purchasing over the years. So often it sounded horrendous on "hi-fi" gear. I suspect that music choices influence most of us more than we may care to admit. Consequently, our music choices also end up being influenced by the gear we have. I have no end of music for little better reason than it sounding awesome on the gear I have. I've grown to love such stuff rather than simply liking it on first listen, invariably in a car or a crappy radio. Most non-"hi-fi" folk just don't listen to such stuff. The "what are you listening to right now?" thread is packed with such music. I also don't underestimate what an individual can get used to in splendid isolation. This was rammed home recently by a pair of IEMs. I got a new DAP for Christmas. It has a 2.5mm balanced connection. I thought I'd get a shiny new pair of IEMs, despite being quite content with what I had. The new ones have made me wonder just how I tolerated the old. They sound utterly woeful in comparison, even on older sources which were more familiar. With my main music set up, I've little doubt that what I think is good in my front room would sound awful to so many others, especially if it were transplanted into another room. Let's face it, there's a fair chance it will sound awful to me if it were transplanted into another room. It's part of what makes me very hesitant to attend Wigwam shows or bake offs. The fact that I'd invariably come away wanting to spend a boat load of cash doesn't help!