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Old 1st February 2011, 01:37 AM   #101
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Originally Posted by markaudio View Post
Hi Scott,
Other Scott's corrected me (45Hz). The Super Pencil 12 cab is 40Hz (Scott L to correct me if needed). Tough choice. Certainly from last weeks listening test, the Pencil 10 with 10.2 drivers (not optimum) won by a short head over the Pencil 12. But the groups decision was very close and hinged on matching amps. Could we have found a sweeter amp match for the Pencil 12's? Possibly, in which case the decision could have swung the other way.

I've got a pair of Oakwood Pencil 10.2's arriving soon, then Super Pencil 12's to be build next. Once this is done, we'll get a better feel for the personality of both systems. My money is still on the Super Pencil 12's using my Accuphase's but this is purely personal choice. Norio, our Japan rep, who's also a respected jazz guitar player favours 10.2's.

Its purely a personal choice situation. Overall, if you've got a larger space, I'd possibly put the Super Pencil 12 (wife/parter permitting) more or less at the top of the list, but anyone wanting a slightly more mellow sound, the 10.2 with its new Matsubara san coil is ubber sweet, especially on a descent tube amp. Either cabinet system doubles up as an excellent flower/plant stand (keeping wife/partner happy).

"Hung Hei Fat Choi" (Happy Chinese New Year) for the year of the Rabbit.

Mark.
So how do these do with solid state or am I totally OT now? I don't have Tubes and although I had some amazing tubes at my house this last week for a GTG I hosted last weekend:

Melody MK88:
Click the image to open in full size.

AN300B (dear lordy this is a sweet sounding amp! My Mini's have NEVER sounded so good!!):
Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

I probably won't be able to do them in this setup due to the type of listening we generally do:

Click the image to open in full size.

The system is generally used for TV watching as well as movies and music. I have two systems and this one is used 85% of the time. With as much TV and Movie watching we do, having a SS receiver is necessary (or a pre-pro with dedicated amps) but space basically dictates a receiver. What I currently use is an HK AVR-254 which is a very nice smooth sounding receiver. I actually like its tonal quality better than my Rotel RSX-1056 I had. WAF is not an issue as you can see. My mains are 47" tall (if I remember right) and the center is 36" wide. I like big speakers So doing the SuperPensil12 is quite a bit smaller than I'm used to! I definitely prefer a more in your face sound than mellow so maybe the Supers are the way to go ... Good bass response for me is critical as is the ability to play loud if need be. I'm not talking reference levels (I have my basement HT for that) but get decently loud in my space.

I'm still struggling though as I've never heard a single driver setup ever so if someone wants to have me over for a listen I'd greatly appreciate it! Especially someone with some of Mark's drivers

Scott

Last edited by skeeter99; 1st February 2011 at 01:41 AM.
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Old 1st February 2011, 01:40 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by planet10 View Post
Or you can just double them up. Install a 2nd pair upside down on the 1st. WAF out the window thou.

dave
I don't understand, what is this WAF thing you speak of WAF doesn't rule my roost that's for sure! Well, I can basically do whatever I want as long as the finish is nice. 72" tall Avebury's, yup, that's ok. If I didn't finish them though I'd be dead! LOL!
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Old 1st February 2011, 01:57 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by skeeter99 View Post
Ok so 45hz on 10.2 and 40hz on Super12? That's pretty dang close ...
Well into where the room dominates

dave
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Old 1st February 2011, 02:20 AM   #104
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Well into where the room dominates

dave
Definitely. I'm presuming with a front "port" on these that the rear wall loading becomes even less significant ...
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Old 1st February 2011, 02:51 AM   #105
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Not a lot. At 45 Hz a half-wavelength is some 12 feet.

dave
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Old 1st February 2011, 09:07 AM   #106
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Mark or anybody,
Could you explain further why the Alpair 12 with the copper ring may work better with the Aleph J than the 10.2? I know its just a thought, but I don't understand what difference ir would make. I like the 10.2's enough that the 12's may finde their way here soon!
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Old 1st February 2011, 11:21 PM   #107
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skeeter99 View Post
So how do these do with solid state or am I totally OT now? I don't have Tubes and although I had some amazing tubes at my house this last week for a GTG I hosted last weekend:

Melody MK88:
Click the image to open in full size.

AN300B (dear lordy this is a sweet sounding amp! My Mini's have NEVER sounded so good!!):
Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

I probably won't be able to do them in this setup due to the type of listening we generally do:

Click the image to open in full size.

The system is generally used for TV watching as well as movies and music. I have two systems and this one is used 85% of the time. With as much TV and Movie watching we do, having a SS receiver is necessary (or a pre-pro with dedicated amps) but space basically dictates a receiver. What I currently use is an HK AVR-254 which is a very nice smooth sounding receiver. I actually like its tonal quality better than my Rotel RSX-1056 I had. WAF is not an issue as you can see. My mains are 47" tall (if I remember right) and the center is 36" wide. I like big speakers So doing the SuperPensil12 is quite a bit smaller than I'm used to! I definitely prefer a more in your face sound than mellow so maybe the Supers are the way to go ... Good bass response for me is critical as is the ability to play loud if need be. I'm not talking reference levels (I have my basement HT for that) but get decently loud in my space.
I'm still struggling though as I've never heard a single driver setup ever so if someone wants to have me over for a listen I'd greatly appreciate it! Especially someone with some of Mark's drivers
Scott
Hi Scott,
Think you had an interesting weekend. I know Melody from their earlier days as the factory was close to mine. The fit and finish on Melody's cases is excellent. One note of moderate caution. There's allot of Chinese commercially produced amps that are good value for money but there are limits on component quality. Thats why I've gravitated towards those members on the DIY forum who are smaller component/amp makers. Usually, these guys search for the really good components and have taken time to work on circuit design. Their priorities are mostly centered on pure acoustic performance rather that keeping the bank manager and share holders happy. I'm not criticising commercially built amps as for the most part they offer good value. But I am recommending doing plenty of research prior to any tube (and solid state) amp purchase. There are super bargains out there.

Moving on to your system development (Super Pencil 12) did you see Graham's pages?:

Graham's hifi page
Pensil 12 and B&W Matrix 802

Graham's experience is really interesting. He moved away from B&W 802's to Pencil 12's (front left and right + centre) and Alpair 7's at the rear. His system is a stereo/HT system, switching between Ella KT88 and a Denon HT receiver.

Cheers

Mark.
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Last edited by markaudio; 1st February 2011 at 11:25 PM. Reason: typo fix
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Old 1st February 2011, 11:36 PM   #108
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Originally Posted by buzzforb View Post
Mark or anybody,
Could you explain further why the Alpair 12 with the copper ring may work better with the Aleph J than the 10.2? I know its just a thought, but I don't understand what difference ir would make. I like the 10.2's enough that the 12's may finde their way here soon!
Hi Buzz,
Interesting question. The 10.2's rectangle wire winding eliminates any small gaps inside its winding. This coil is almost 0.5g lighter than the Gen 1 Alp10. The rectangle coil is more electro-mechancically efficient. When added to the rest of the up-grades (Multi-form cone, low mass rear suspension etc.) the 10.2 is a step forward. its impedance response is slightly flatter than the Alp12, thus suiting many tube amp, especially those warm soft clipping types. When mated with 10.2's, it makes for a warm sound with sweet detail. Equally, listening to the 10.2's on my Accuphase 308 is also a ubber nice experience.

Re Alp12 on Class A, the Aleph J is a pure class A with plenty of power (30 watts). I've listening to Japanese built solid Walnut wood Pencil 12's on Luxman's 590 Class A, also 30 watts. Its a great match. The dynamics were as good as it can get. This system is in the hands of a respected pianist so it had to got right.

The more critical question is: "what do I up-grade on the next batch of Alpair 12?". most likely the coil for the Alp12 will follow the design of the Alp10.2. But I'm some time away from this project as the Alp12 remains an advanced driver with the most complex suspension I've made to date.

But you guys know me, I'm a "tweakaholic". Can't help it, I'm addicted to designing, testing and more tweaking.

Cheers

Mark.
Attached Images
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File Type: jpg e308neu.jpg (77.1 KB, 61 views)

Last edited by markaudio; 1st February 2011 at 11:55 PM. Reason: additional
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Old 1st February 2011, 11:51 PM   #109
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Good to know. I am will follow with eager anticipation. I can asure you that if you did update the 12's, you would sell one pair. I have yet to hear the 10.2's in anything other than a cardboard box but cannot say enough about build quality and sound....at low levels. My Aleph J and Pensil's will go head to head with my brothers tube amp and Quad floorstanders.
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Old 2nd February 2011, 12:13 AM   #110
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Originally Posted by buzzforb View Post
Good to know. I am will follow with eager anticipation. I can asure you that if you did update the 12's, you would sell one pair. I have yet to hear the 10.2's in anything other than a cardboard box but cannot say enough about build quality and sound....at low levels. My Aleph J and Pensil's will go head to head with my brothers tube amp and Quad floorstanders.
hi Buzz,
I've added more info to my last post. Hope this helps. Thanks for your support, alway welcome. Its down to personal choice. Along with the local listening groups and beta guys, there's going to be lots of Markaudio driver/amp combinations that work well.

I've just given my beloved 300B to Kenneth to up-grade all its transformers. Will take a month or so as he makes by hand taking up to 4 days just to make 1 winding!

Can't wait to get my 300B back.

Equally, we played both 10.2 and 12's on my beloved vintage (1990) Sansui AU-a907DR. Weighing in at nearly 34Kg (phew) with its monster "Silent Weave" transformers, 10.2's and 12's like their lips when they see this amp being connected. I only paid a couple of hundred bucks for this amp, buying it in Tokyo, it cost almost as much to ship it to Hong Kong because of the weight.

SANSUI ƒvƒŠƒƒCƒ“ƒAƒ“ƒvAU-ƒ907DR‚Žd—l ƒTƒ“ƒXƒC

Cheers

Mark.

Last edited by markaudio; 2nd February 2011 at 12:16 AM. Reason: additional
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