I played the first track through the SP14 this past friday at around 9am. "The Look of Love" by Diana Krall (computer file). At first it sounded cold and hard. Even a little tizzy at the extreme top end. I know it needs some play time in order to smooth out. Even still, I could tell that imaging and soundstage are head and shoulders above the Eico. My friend and I have been playing guitar along with artists over my system for years, but friday, we just played track after track after beautiful track. He is not an audio guy and never has been, but he loves music just as much as I do. As we were listening to a Greatful Dead track, HE was the one who pointed out how realistic drums sound now. He said "I have NEVER heard drums sound like that coming out of a stereo". On another track, he went on to tell me that "it sounds like a real live person is playing a real piano inside your house". All this time, I was wondering to myself whether I should have used the k40y caps in here rather than the Mundorfs, because to me, it sounded like someone was poking me in the ear with a sharp stick. After playing tracks all day and into the night friday and saturday, it already seems to have smoothed out significantly this morning. Bass is fuller and richer now and that tizzy top end has mellowed quite a bit. Patience is a virtue and I'm not going to run out of music to listen to, so I'm just going to let it play and see what happens as it burns in. Overall, my wife and I both feel like this is the best sounding piece of audio equipment that I've installed in my system to date. I have one little bug to work out between the gain and master volume, but I can't bring myself to pull it out to fix it!!
Thank you Roy for making a piece like this available at such an awesome price! I personally know the folks who own Audio Alternative in Lilburn GA. I never thought I'd ever own equipment that sounded even close to the megabuck stuff they sell, but I do now! They have always been nice enough to set up the very best they have to offer and allow me to bring records in and get a reference. So how do I tell them they need to come over to MY place to get a reference?? HA!!!
Edited to include the fact that I now understand what people mean when I read about "instruments in their own space" or "air around instruments" or "black background". This thing is dead quiet too.
Last edited by xlr8 on Sun Feb 17, 2013 3:06 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Additional details)