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Impromtu Visit to Pause

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  • Impromtu Visit to Pause

    Last week I was in Stockholm Sweden and meeting up with some coworkers for dinner. As we were scoping out two different burger establishments I noticed a store by the second place. We had decided to dine at the second place, but we had 20 minutes to wait for another coworker to arrive who had just got to town. I started to look through the window at this store called Pause, the store was closed thus window gazing was about all I could do... Then out came Peter and asked what I was doing. I told him I'm into building speakers and love checking out stores like this to see what they have and listen to. Peter took it to the next level and gave me a 20 minute listening session and showed me the popular brand that Pause sells Totem Acoustic.

    The listening session began in the back room of the store as Peter showed me to the room and started to play some music.

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    Listening was through the following components that evening:

    Totem Forest speakers were the main pair that were used. They had a warm feel and reminded me of the SMJ Calliope MTs. I don't have near the listening experience that many others have on this forum, but these sounded really good to me. Live music was easy to tell who was standing where on the stage while I could sit back and enjoy the song feeling like I was there in person. Note that the prices are in SEK which is around 10 SEK to 1 USD.

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    Powering the Forest was an amp that I'm not familiar with, but some others on the forum might be is the EVO 400 Power Amplifier? Again I'm a novice in this area, and didn't know what to look for, but it was giving the juice to make the Forest sound amazing during the listening session.

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    Sending the music to the Amp was through the Auralic Altair G2.1. I would be really interest to know if anyone on the forum has listened to this DAC and the Denafrips Terminator II to share their thoughts for a compare and contrast. One thing I can share is that I really want to get a DAC at home now to use instead of using the Emotiva, I think I have a whole new world to experience!

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    The last song that Peter played for the listening session was one that I had to get a photo of to remember the artist to go buy the album. Listening to the vocals of that album on this setup was something I could have spent all night doing. However I needed to get over to the burger place to dine and Peter was more than generous to open up the store after closing for me to have a short listening session.

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    To wrap up I definitely need to start looking into a DAC for 2.0 listening and upgrading the amp that I'm using with the Ardent D's. A big thanks to Peter from Pause for letting me listen to the setup there and showing me some great artists. One fun nightly adventure accomplished, what can I find next...
    Painter in training

  • #2
    Take about serendipity, Sven! But you didn't even tell us the name of the burger place so we could find this shop next time we're in Stockholm!

    🤣

    Now, as unlikely as that sounds, keep in mind my wife's youngest daughter's family now lives on the outskirts of Stockholm, a transplant from the SF Bay Area, due to her American husband Andrew being recruited by an old friend at Ubisoft. I hope that is working out OK for him, given the things I read about Ubisoft business wise recently. Haven't heard anything negative from them, they really like it there, their younger son in Preschool is learning to count in Swedish as well as English. Older boy is sticking to English and Russian. And the Costco in Stockholm opened this last November; for some of us, it's not civilization unless there is a Costco at hand!


    Back to business!

    I'm familiar (somewhat) with Totem acoustics and Totem Forest, but I haven't heard the latter personally- I'd expect them to be well executed.

    It's interesting that EVO is using EL34's in their integrated; they are the mainstay of most Marshall tube amps (which I'm FAR more familiar with) but take a bit of work to get good linearity working in a low distortion mode. Interesting they have both pentode and triode modes, note fair linearity at 1W, but rather high distortion at rated power; I suspect that rating is like for a lot of class D amps, which are "inflated" because they're already in a substantially nonlinear area, and power is rated at 1-2% distortion to make the output capabilities look better. Would be very interesting to see a distortion versus level plot. The thing about amps like this is that they have a very different set of issues with regards to linearity than most solid state amps, and how it presents to the ear is different and sometimes far more palatable for many solid state amps, as it sounds more natural.


    The Altair G2.1 is part of Auralic's newest generation of products and has been very well received; I haven't had the opportunity to hear or measure one myself, but their first gen stuff was quite good for it's time, as reported in "On the Bench". Auralic's audio modules have always tested quite well. Obviously, I heartily "approve" of the R2R ladder volume control (one of my hot button topics). Having a large disk library, I really like their approach and flexibility to CD reading and ripping and storage. They seem to have paid the due attention to low phase jitter master clock development, but somewhat surprisingly to me, they are rather "mum" about the actual DAC architecture. Given their references to 32 bit processing, I'm inclined to put my money down on their using a Sabre DAC chip. And lacking a digital output, in say, I2S or AES/EBU, one cannot choose to just use it as a network render device- then too, they would have to have ADC for the analog inputs, which is another big task. And the 0dBFS THD+N spec is quite good, but matched by some other products I have tested- what gets "interesting" is what happens below the full scale level, where we normally spend most of our time listening. Yes, quibbles on my part, but hey, I didn't buy an Audio Precision APx555 to just sit around with a goofy smile on my face nodding at every new spec sheet that comes by...

    😏


    Now, the Denafrips Terminator, that's something more up alley, as I have an "upgraded" version of the original. Denafrips is exclusively distributed by Vinshine Audio in Singapore; that's where I bought my Denfrips gear; also have a preamp and power amp. Definitely recommended at its price point, especially the Terminator II. But of course, you know it's another of my preferred architecture configurations, sign-magnitude R2R ladder DAC. The Terminators have had more exotic input source capabilities than most since the beginning including flavors of I2S. The latter is useful or important because it originated as the method to convey digital signals inside a component, such as a disk player, and includes separate paths for both the clock and the data, so one doesn't have to attempt to reconstruct clean timing from the data signal.


    Now, as to Ms. Chie Ayado and her Best II album, that's easy to find on streaming services, and not too hard to locate in vinyl. But a digital disk takes a bit of work...

    https://malmusic.com/index.php?dispa...&product_id=79

    I just ordered this, so if they only had an inventory of "1".... anyone else may be out of luck.


    This reminds me of tracking down products by "Hiromi", a jazz fusion pianist from Japan that I really like, whose heyday was about 10 years ago.

    Thanks for the post- it was a fun start to my Sunday morning!




    the AudioWorx
    Arvo Pärt
    Isiris MLBL
    Modula MT
    Natalie P
    M8ta
    Modula Neo D CC
    Ardent
    Modula MT XE
    Modula Xtreme
    Isiris
    Wavecor Ardent

    SMJ
    Minerva Monitor
    Calliope
    Ardent D

    In Development...
    Isiris Mk II updates
    Calliope CC
    Obi-Wan
    Saint-Saëns Symphonique
    Modula PWB
    Calliope CC Supreme


    Resistance is not futile, it is Volts divided by Amperes...
    Just ask Mr. Ohm....

    Comment


    • #3
      BTW, just bought the Chie Ayado album on Apple Music, to give it a listen- on the local network.
      the AudioWorx
      Arvo Pärt
      Isiris MLBL
      Modula MT
      Natalie P
      M8ta
      Modula Neo D CC
      Ardent
      Modula MT XE
      Modula Xtreme
      Isiris
      Wavecor Ardent

      SMJ
      Minerva Monitor
      Calliope
      Ardent D

      In Development...
      Isiris Mk II updates
      Calliope CC
      Obi-Wan
      Saint-Saëns Symphonique
      Modula PWB
      Calliope CC Supreme


      Resistance is not futile, it is Volts divided by Amperes...
      Just ask Mr. Ohm....

      Comment


      • #4
        I ordered the album as well. Thanks for finding a link. There was one for sale on the Germany Amazon, but not in the USA. This was easier to go through the link you shared 😉
        Painter in training

        Comment


        • #5
          Cool! I live to serve….

          Except when the Dark Side comes out!

          BTW, the Apple version is Lossless, so if one has a player like Audirvana that can bring in iTunes Library and play it too, then you can have lossless CD resolution for just $9.99.
          the AudioWorx
          Arvo Pärt
          Isiris MLBL
          Modula MT
          Natalie P
          M8ta
          Modula Neo D CC
          Ardent
          Modula MT XE
          Modula Xtreme
          Isiris
          Wavecor Ardent

          SMJ
          Minerva Monitor
          Calliope
          Ardent D

          In Development...
          Isiris Mk II updates
          Calliope CC
          Obi-Wan
          Saint-Saëns Symphonique
          Modula PWB
          Calliope CC Supreme


          Resistance is not futile, it is Volts divided by Amperes...
          Just ask Mr. Ohm....

          Comment

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