Due to a concurrence of circumstances, a lot of new elements have crept into my reference system over the past few months and therefore your author wrote this new episode of ‘Fresh Blood’. Just to bring you back up to speed with all the big and small changes. Enjoy!
After almost three years of loyal service, the Atc Scm19 V2 monitors are disappearing from the system. These speakers were excellent measuring instruments but I always had a love/hate relationship with them. The highs and mids were almost perfect but I just couldn’t get the bass right in my rather airy sounding room. The whole thing never really got balanced. A subwoofer could have been used but we still do not take that route. All too often the sub cannot catch up with the main speaker, or the bass will get to dominate. Yet I hope to test my first sub soon. Stay tuned!
So I had to look for a new reference speaker and that was no easy task. I wanted a monitor again because that’s what I specialize in and because monitors are easier to transport to the picturesque West Flanders region.
My new monitor had to be able to reproduce everything but didn’t necessarily have to be musical. This time I wanted a bit more ‘oomph’ at the bass end and so I made a shortlist of possible candidates. From that list I chose, together with Jaap, the Revel Performa M126Be that both he and Yung really liked. The Revel Performa M126Be is not too big, measures excellently and is relatively affordable considering its performance. It is a transparent pass-through for the rest of the system and that is absolutely essential. I’m looking forward immensely to getting to know this bloody beautiful speaker better and will let you know how it turns out in the coming weeks.
Since importer Reference Sounds clearly stated that the M126Be benefits greatly from a solid stand I realized that my modest Norstone stands would no longer suffice. Although the Isoacoustics Aperta’s do a sublime job I would still like to have a somewhat stricter look and so I ended up at the Italian Solidsteel. Their stands are not only beautiful to look at, they are also full of technology and that is important. If all goes well I expect a set of white Solidsteel ss-6 stands that will hopefully go well with the Revels both visually and aurally.
In addition to a new speaker, no less than two new d/a converters joined the test-set-up in the past few months. First of all the amazing Sonnet Morpheus from Cees Ruijtenberg. This NOS dac with preamplifier takes the whole system to the next level and is our new reference. My previous dacs, the Metrum Acoustics Onyx and Benchmark Dac3 were very good but both are outclassed by the Morpheus. It goes the extra mile on every level. More authority in the low end, flawless midrange and silky high end are just some of its qualities.