Ciao music lovers!
We begin the new year with great expectations and a positive mindset, opening this first Audiophile Notes editorial of 2021 with a strong audio enthusiast with a spectacular Hi-Fi system that truly stunned us: Mr. Don from USA, lucky enough for having neighbors far away to listen music as loud as he wants. He is also a proud Solidsteel VL-3 Hi-Fi rack owner.
Don, how did you become passionate about high fidelity?
I’ve always been into listening to music, and audio gear. It started out with car audio when I was younger, then typical “box style” home theater systems, then working my way to what I have today.
My HiFi journey started for me three years ago. I had recently gone to my 1st major music festival (EDC Las Vegas) and was hooked! I realized the system I had at home just wasn’t going to fill my needs when I couldn’t be at a live show or festival so I started looking to upgrade.
Describe your Hi-Fi/ AV System and tell us more about your components. Is there something from your equipment that you would never substitute? When you first heard about Solidsteel brand? In which terms have you noticed benefits in using Solidsteel products? (Audio quality, Design, smart components positioning) What would you recommend to other music lovers?
I first purchased a set of Martin Logan Ethos series electrostats. I absolutely love these speakers. They sound great, and everyone compliments on the looks. I then added the McIntosh C2500 tube preamp, and a Rotel RB1582. I liked the Rotel but felt like I needed more, and moved up to the McIntosh MC452 amplifier. At 110 lbs this thing is a beast! (this is where Solidsteel comes in) Not long after bringing the amp home it broke the shelf that it was sitting on, and after reading excellent reviews about Solidsteel, and the folks at my local Magnolia Design center recommending it, I ordered one up! I couldn’t be happier with the product. The fit and finish is excellent. It truly is as beautiful as it is functional. A real piece of furniture that will appeal to many different tastes. I would highly recommend this product to anyone looking for a quality solution to housing their home audio equipment.
I then added a Mcintosh MCD550 CD player, a Furman Reference IT-Reference 20i Power Conditioner, and most recently a Bluesound Node 2i for streaming. Everything is connected with Audioquest cables.
I had a pair of custom sound diffusors made by RebelSky acoustics that I feel really tie the whole look together, and I feel they helped clean up the highs.
What is your favorite music genre? Which are your reference albums you generally choose for “testing” your system?
I appreciate all genres of music but EDM is my favorite, with Trance being my sub-genre of choice. I have a few CDs from Andrew Rayel (my friend, and favorite producer/DJ) with some melodic piano sections that I usually test my system with. I also stream a lot of music using Tidal HiFi. Armin van Buuren, Cosmic Gate, Gareth Emery, and Eric Prydz are among my artists.
Which audio format do you listen most? Digital or Analogic? Can you tell us why?
I typically listen to digital formats. Mainly CDs and Tidal Hifi Streaming service. I love the almost endless variety of music available through Tidal, but still enjoy tracking down my favorite artists CD.
Considering your attention for any aspect connected to your components, their proper position and the music room ambient, which advice do you feel to give for those who are approaching the Hi-Fi world? What is “essential” for creating a first audio system?
I think the best advice I could give someone who is interested in the creating their first audio system is to establish a budget, and find a reputable/knowledgeable retailer to help you. Ive found there a lot of things that work well together, and a lot that do not. These can be expensive lessons to learn. Most importantly have fun, and enjoy the music.
What’s your feedback about emotions in music? Do you like attending music concerts, live shows and events?
Emotions in music…
Wow, this is a big one for me. I mentioned how attending a music festival turned me onto Hi-Fi, but it also turned me on to another way of life. It opened my mind to the world. In the last three years I’ve attended shows, and festivals from the the US, Mexico, Holland, Spain, Belgium, and even traveled to Croatia during the Pandemic for the only festival that survived COVID19.
Which is your favorite “moment” of the day for listening music with your audio system?
Music plays a huge part in my life. I have friends literally all over the world due to music alone. My favorite part of the day is coming home from 12 plus hours at the office, poring my favorite drink, and getting lost in the music. It brings back memories of the amazing experiences I’ve had, and all the wonderful people I’ve met.
Currently we cant go to any live shows, so in a way my stereo has helped me bring the experience to my home.
Suggest some music we absolutely can’t miss.
Tracks to check out:
Andrew Rayel “Everything Everything” “Never Going Down” “One in a Million” “Aeon of Revenge”
Armin van Buuren “Wild Wild Son” “This Is What It Feels Like” “Alone”
Gareth Emery “You’ll Be Ok” “Concrete Angel” “Sansa”
Eric Prydz “Opus” “Generate”
Many thanks to Mr. Don for giving us his personal point of view. If you want to discover more about him check @djf421 on Instagram.
Stay tuned for other music lover personal experiences by Solidsteel.