Young HiFi-er - My experiences so far, & getting excited about HiFi...!


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Oct 2, 2011
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Hi all, I want to share my HiFi excitement and findings with you all. I'm still a novice but I enjoy my music. I’ve been given some information on this forum, so it’s only right that I give some back.

I have a Yamaha micro HiFi with a pair of KEF iQ1’s and use good enough cable that I think is QED XT. (Looking back, I kind of wish I’d got the Denon and Tannoy combo. Looking forward I’ll probably get a more powerful Denon with Mission’s). Well, the system and speakers are fully enclosed and packed tight in a bookshelf in the kitchen, so it’s the worst for acoustics.

I like the sound but it lacks a little bass. If I turn the bass up on the HiFi, it basically replaces all the mid with bass. The bass sounds god but it’s constant like the mid would be, so I stick with less bass. Also, when badly made pop tunes come onto the radio, they sometimes sound incredibly badly produce, particularly the bass notes. Maybe this is normal for half decent HiFi’s?

Anyway, my next step in HiFi was the purchase of a classic Technics separates from eBay, new A class amp, CD player and tuner; a bargain £17.50. Next was speakers and many suggested Mission’s to me. I was looking for a while and focused mainly on the 732’s, and maybe 731’s. However, a deal came up near home for 5 speakers which I got for a bargain price of £41. The centre speaker is a single driver Technics which I may never use, then 2 pairs of Mordaunt Short’s, large bookshelf speakers MS5.20’s and smaller ones MS10’s.

They may not be exactly what I was after, but they’ll certainly help me continue into home cinema. From reading a couple reviews, it seems the MS’s give a similar sound to the Mission’s of their time, jackpot! They might be a cheaper version, but I'm ok with that. I'm set to move house, so the Technics has been boxed up for a couple weeks, and the new speakers sitting in the corner of the room.

Then, I bought the latest issue of What HiFi with the 2011 awards in, and I couldn’t resist. I moved my Yamaha system into the living room, connected the sound using the only cables I haven’t packed, so a mini jack into the headphone port in the TV, to an RCA cable into the system (so the signal was being amplified by both the TV and the Yamaha, not ideal). Then connected the new MS5.20’s, placing them in the ideal position, either side of the TV (they can’t go any further apart), on the floor, in our tiny living room. Then I grabbed my MJ Acoustics Pro 50 Mkii subwoofer out of its box and placed it in the middle of the room; as it was easy to do, for just a couple days. I then set the sub up using recently found new knowledge and it integrated pretty easily and pretty well.

Music sounded amazing and the TV was great. Movies were a little disappointing from the TV, as the sub didn’t rumble. I think my setup is far from ideal, so I'm not complaining. The main thing that amazed me was music. We started off with some music we like, nice and loud with the sub on. A more captivating sound than in the kitchen, no doubt due to speaker placement, bigger speakers and that they had a good amount of free space. Then, later on, we listened to an hour or so of radio which was pure bliss. The depth and clarity was just so inviting. I even said that I’ve never heard radio this good.

A dub-step tune came on with lashing of bass which came across in a new and captivating new light, musical and nicely paced bass. (I thought the sub was turned on during this time, but, it turns out it wasn’t, so this is all about the Mordaunt Short’s). The speakers seemed to have great mids, yet when the bass deepened, they handled it. When watching the TV, the speakers didn’t boom, like I would have expected they would, when I knew they could put out so much bass. Everything was great, banjo’s playing sounded great, and birds tweeting. Then when a bass note or two came in from a tune, they’d again handle it all.

What I think I'm trying to say, is that I didn’t know you could get such a broad and captivating sound from a 2-way speaker. So, I’ll never get rid of my KEF’s, because they look the business and do sound great, if not very bassy. I may get some Chord Carnival speaker cable, however. And I may try the bi-wire version of the Carnival cable. And, in the new house it will still live in the kitchen.

As for the living room, I was simply going to put in my super low budget Panasonic DVD player/surround sound in, £140 all in for player and 5.1 cheap speakers. But, I now feel the need for main speakers as good as the big MS’s. Floorstanders would be ideal as it’s quite a large room, and I want the better sound. I’ve kind of felt like living rooms of today have turned into TV rooms, and having a great sounding radio and CD player in there would transform it back into a living room.

After hearing such amazing music over the weekend in my living room, I want to have that, and appreciate music and really listen to it. I don’t tend to do that enough nowadays. I can see it transforming the use of the room, and turning the TV and relaxing in there seems immensely appealing, especially with our first child on the way.


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