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Home > Gaudi > Listening & BGM Modes 2011/04/03 created
2016/07/26 updated

Listening & BGM Modes

i2016/07/18 addedj
This feature, switching Listening Mode (multiamp) to/from BGM Mode (monoamp), has been removed since March 2015 in order to simplify the circuit of the network CD-211B A-NET and improve sound quality. So the description in this page is not applicable to the current Gaudi system.
Now I use my small lap top PC (Panasonic Let's Note CF-N9) and TV (JVC LT-37LH905) for background music. They are connected via HDMI. The sound quality of LT-37LH905 is better than ordinary minicomponent stereo sets, so this system has enough sound quality.

i2012/12/09j oThis feature, switching Listening Mode (multiamp) to/from BGM Mode (monoamp), has been changed as a result of upgrade of the loudspeaker SS-309 and customize of the network CD-211 in November, 2012. The new feature is switching a tri-amplified system to/from a bi-amplified system.p

Currently, Gaudi can be used as either multiamptri-amplified or single-amp bi-amplified system. When I want to listen to music in the best sound quality, I choose the multiamp tri-amplified system. I call this configuration Listening Mode. When I want to listen with ease or to save energy, I choose the single-amp bi-amplified system. I call this configuration BGM (background music) Mode.

Listening Mode

When I choose the Listening Mode, I make preparations before listening. They are a bit ceremonial.

  1. Move the table backward that is usually placed between the listening position and Gaudi.
  2. Place a chair at the listening point.
  3. Place cushions in front of the loudspeakers as a sound absorber.
  4. Turn off the air conditioner and fluorescent lights. Turn on the incandescent lamps. Turn off PC and TV.
  5. Toggle the switch of the network, CD-211A, to 'MULTI3-WAY'.
  6. Turn on players and amps.
  7. Stuff up the vent of the midrange of the loudspeaker, SS-309, with a urethane foam pad.
  8. Remove the grilles of SS-309A.

If the table is placed in front of the listening point, sound waves reflected by it interfere with sound waves directly from the loudspeakers. That makes acoustic images blur. The table must be moved beforehand (step-1).

I have a leather sofa in the room. When you sit on it, your body sinks until the ears come close to the backrest. The leather absorbs low frequencies while it reflects middle and high frequencies. If an object that reflects sound is placed near the ears, the sound quality deteriorates. So an ordinary wooden chair is the best (step-2).

The reason why I turn off the air conditioner in step-4 is I want to prevent the fan noise and the electric RF noises that the inverter of the air conditioner generates and propagate via mains. The RF noises are so harmful to the audio system. Inverters of the fluorescent lights also generate RF noises. They should be turned off.

I turn off PC for the same reason as the air conditioner. The cooling fan is a little noisy, and RF radiation from PC degrades the system sound quality, especially when PC is placed near preamp. I usually don't use PC as a music player in Listening Mode.

Step-7 must not be skipped. If skipped, midrange is much distorted. The sound waves that come from the vent interfere with the sound waves from the front of the driver and cause distortion. This phenomena is hard to find when the driver produces full range. But you can tell the distortion when it produces only midrange.

Step-8 also should not be skipped. The frames of the grilles of SS-309A is made of square timber and cause diffraction phenomena, which distorts the sound.

After these steps, I listen to music. You may think they are troublesome. I don't mind. By doing this ceremony, my living room turns into the listening room, and I feel more like listening to music. I feel as if I was in a small concert hall.

I often listen to jazz records in the Listening Mode. I turn the volume up on full blast. I sometimes listen to classical music too. Vinyl records are good for classical music too.

Switch of Network
The switch of network CD-211

 ===>  CD-211A switch
The switch of network CD-211A
 Closed Vent of Midrange Box
The closed vent of the midrange box

===>  SS-309A midrange
 Midrange of SS-309A
Grille of Midrange (back)
The grille of the midrange (back)

===>  SS309A grille
The grille of woofer (back) 
 Listening Mode
Listening Mode
===>  Listening mode
Listening Mode 

BGM Mode

For the BGM Mode, I don't make any particular preparation such as changing the layout of furniture. It is the mode in which I enjoy music in daily life.

  1. Toggle the switch of the network, CD-211A, to 'SINGLE2-WAY'.
  2. Turn on players and amps except MA-201 (woofer amp) and MA-208 (tweeter amp).
  3. Open the vent of the midrange of the loudspeaker, SS-309.

The midrange unit functions as the tweeter in this mode. Its f-range is 800-20000Hz.

I prefer vinyl records also in BGM Mode. Analog sounds make me comfortable and relaxed. I don't feel it's too loud even when the volume is high.

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