Many folks feel that the only way to get better sound is to spend a lot more money. New amplifiers or speakers, new cd player etc. These upgrades will indeed improve your system however in many cases, we miss very important and less expensive ways to “tune-up” our system before we purchase new devices. Remember that these changes will also enhance any new purchases!
1. Proper cleaning devices. As our music ages, the surfaces become damaged. Scratches and fingerprints force the “error correction” circuits of CD players to activate to get around the “blur” caused by fingerprints. Scratches also create issues as they change the angles of reflection for the laser head. Solution? Get a good CD Cleaner. Good cleaners run from about $30 and up and you get instant gratification. We carry Shine-Ola by MoFi – it gives fantastic results, even on new CDs or DVDs. LPs are no different, the biggest thing here is most cleaners used on a regular basis can not get rid of the residuals in the bottom of the groove. Check out Spin-Clean. After cleaning even half a dozen LPs, you will see the amount of surface crud in the bottom of the basin. Spin-Clean has been formulated to draw the gunk to the bottom of the device ensuring that the “crud” does not get back on your next LP. Great Stuff!
2. Clean Power. I think that we all assume that the hydro that we get “is what it is”. Can’t change it, it’s a necessary evil. There are amazing changes that can be made. New receptacles coded as “hospital grade” will offer an immediate improvement. How these units differ from receptacles that you find in your home is they provide much more contact which actually offers more available power faster. These range from about $30.00 to $200.00.
2a. Power Cords. If your amplifiers, CD Players etc. have detachable power cords, change them!!!It is incredible what a difference they make. Why… again it is about the delivery of fast clean power. A true tale is that one of our customers had a CD player that would actually “shut down” on a certain track on his favourite disc. I mean actually shut down to the point that he had to turn off the player, leave it off for a bit then fire it back up.He tried a cable on the CD player and found 2 things. Firstly, the sound became much more detailed and open. The best thing was that his player no longer shut down on that track. Skipped a bit but kept on playing. I’m not a tech but I can only deduce that the cable corrected a power supply problem. Customers are able to return these cables if no difference can be heard – We’ve never had a return! Our Cords are by GutWire, prices start at $95. and are highly recommended – Check 6 Moons e-mag.
3. Furniture. Room sound too bright? Add plants to introduce more humidty into your room. Leather furniture, maybe add pillows or a throw that you use when you listen. Speakers muddy or too much bass? Most speakers like to be away from the wall – a minimum of 18″. Add Spikes to the speaker. This will uncouple the speakers from the floor. If you have hardwood floors or are concerned about tearing your carpet, Spike Shoes are available to protect these surfaces.
4. Turntable Fan – Me too! Check out the great new “cork mats” from Pro-Ject. I am again amazed at the difference in sound. Bottom end became more solid, overall improvement in sound and all for about $20.00
5. GutWire Notepad. No, it’s not a laptop, it’s actually a little bag that is placed on top of an amplifier or cd player, directly above the power transformer on an amp or the transport mechanism on a cd player. What it does is eliminate the vibrations caused by these devices. To me the sound becomes more solid but better defined. Great product and we have an introductory offer – normally $49.00 – SPECIAL PRICE $36. including HST!
More Hints to Come!