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Dana White serves as the president of the UFC. White has held that position since ; while under his stewardship, the UFC has grown into a globally popular multi-billion-dollar enterprise. In subsequent events, fighters began adopting effective techniques from more than one discipline, which indirectly helped create an entirely separate style of fighting known as present-day mixed martial arts.

The tournament was inspired by the Gracies in Action video-series produced by the Gracie family of Brazil which featured Gracie jiu-jitsu students defeating martial-arts masters of various disciplines such as karate , kung fu , and kickboxing. The tournament would also feature martial artists from different disciplines facing each other in no-holds-barred combat to determine the best martial art and would aim to replicate the excitement of the matches Davie saw on the videos. Davie drafted the business plan and twenty-eight investors contributed the initial capital to start WOW Promotions with the intent to develop the tournament into a television franchise.

Art Davie functioned as the show's booker and matchmaker. Royce Gracie's submission skills proved the most effective in the inaugural tournament, earning him the first ever UFC tournament championship [23] after submitting Jimmerson, Shamrock, and Gordeau in succession.

The show proved extremely successful with 86, television subscribers on pay-per-view. It's disputed whether the promoters intended for the event to become a precursor to a series of future events.

Never in a million years did these guys think they were creating a sport. He says, "Clearly, both Campbell and Meyrowitz shared my unwavering belief that War of the Worlds [note 1] would be a continuing series of fighting tournaments—a franchise, rather than a one-night stand. With no weight classes, fighters often faced significantly larger or taller opponents. During this early part of the organization, the UFC would showcase a bevy of different styles and fighters.

Although the first events were dominated by jiu-jitsu, other fighting styles became successful: Davie continued with SEG as the show's booker and matchmaker, as well as the commissioner of Ultimate Fighting, until December It banned biting and eye-gouging, and allowed techniques such as hair pulling, headbutting , groin strikes , and fish-hooking. In a UFC 4 qualifying match, competitors Jason Fairn and Guy Mezger agreed not to pull hair—as they both wore pony tails tied back for the match.

That same event saw a matchup between Keith Hackney and Joe Son in which Hackney unleashed a series of groin shots against Son while on the ground. The UFC had a reputation, especially in the early days, as an extremely violent event, as evidenced by a disclaimer in the beginning of the UFC 5 broadcast which warned audiences of the violent nature of the sport. This proved an important development, because singles matches would feature fighters who suffered no prior damage from a previous fight in the same event, unlike tournament matches.

Singles matches would become a staple in the UFC for years to come. The "Superfight" would eventually completely phase out tournament matches; by UFC Brazil , the UFC abandoned the tournament format for an entire card of singles matches aside from a one-time UFC Japan tournament featuring Japanese fighters. The violent nature of the burgeoning sport quickly drew the attention of the U.

McCain himself led a campaign to ban UFC, calling it "human cockfighting", even sending letters to the governors of all fifty US states asking them to ban the event. Thirty-six states enacted laws that banned "no-hold-barred" fighting, including New York, which enacted the ban on the eve of UFC 12 , forcing a relocation of the event to Dothan, Alabama. In response to the criticism, the UFC increased cooperation with state athletic commissions and redesigned its rules to remove the less palatable elements of fights while retaining the core elements of striking and grappling.

UFC 12 saw the introduction of weight classes and the banning of fish-hooking. For UFC 14 , gloves became mandatory, while kicks to the head of a downed opponent were banned. UFC 15 saw limitations on hair pulling, and the banning of strikes to the back of the neck and head, headbutting, small-joint manipulations, and groin strikes. With five-minute rounds introduced at UFC 21 , the UFC gradually re-branded itself as a sport rather than a spectacle.

As the UFC continued to work with the athletic commissions, events took place in smaller U. The markets included states that are largely rural and less known for holding professional sporting events, such as Iowa, Mississippi, Louisiana, Wyoming, and Alabama. With other mixed martial arts promotions working towards U. As the UFC's rules started to evolve, so too did its field of competitors.

After the long battle to secure sanctioning, SEG stood on the brink of bankruptcy, when Station Casinos executives Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta and their business partner Dana White approached them in , with an offer to purchase the UFC. That is what's going to make this thing work. Everybody knows that brand, whether they like it or they don't like it, they react to it.

The UFC slowly, but steadily, rose in popularity after the Zuffa purchase, due partly to greater advertising, [35] corporate sponsorship, the return to cable pay-per-view and subsequent home video and DVD releases.

The Best Damn Sports Show Period aired the first mixed martial arts match on American cable television in June , as well as the main event showcasing Chuck Liddell vs. Vitor Belfort at UFC UFC 40 proved to be the most critical event to date in the Zuffa era. The event was a near sellout of 13, at the MGM Grand Arena and sold , pay per view buys, a rate roughly double that of the previous Zuffa events.

It was the first time the UFC hit such a high mark since being forced "underground" in Shamrock saved the UFC from bankruptcy; the buyrates of the previous Zuffa shows averaged a mere 45, buys per event and the company was suffering deep monetary losses. Faced with the prospect of folding, the UFC stepped outside the bounds of pay-per-view and made a foray into television.

After being featured in a reality television series, American Casino , [43] and seeing how well the series worked as a promotion vehicle, the Fertitta brothers developed the idea of the UFC having its own reality series.

Their idea, The Ultimate Fighter TUF was —a reality television show featuring up-and-coming MMA fighters in competition for a six-figure UFC contract, with fighters eliminated from competition via exhibition mixed martial arts matches.

It was pitched to several networks, each one rejecting the idea outright. The show became an instant success, culminating with a notable season finale brawl featuring light heavyweight finalists Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonnar going toe-to-toe for the right to earn the six-figure contract.

The live broadcast of the season finale drew a very impressive 1. Following the success of The Ultimate Fighter , Spike also picked up UFC Unleashed , an hour-long weekly show featuring select fights from previous events.

After a very successful run on Spike and with the upcoming announcement of the UFC's new relationship with Fox , Spike officials made a statement regarding the end of their partnership with the UFC, " The Ultimate Fighter season 14 in September will be our last Our 6-year partnership with the UFC has been incredibly beneficial in building both our brands, and we wish them all the best in the future.

Along with the network change, episodes are now edited and broadcast within a week of recording instead of a several-month delay, and elimination fights are aired live. With increased visibility, the UFC's pay-per-view buy numbers exploded. For the rest of , pay-per-view buy rates continued to skyrocket, with , buys for UFC The surge in popularity prompted the UFC to beef up its executive team.

Ratner, once an ally of Senator McCain's campaign against no holds barred fighting, became a catalyst for the emergence of sanctioned mixed martial arts in the United States. Ratner lobbied numerous athletic commissions [53] to help raise the UFC's media profile in an attempt to legalize mixed martial arts in jurisdictions inside and outside the United States that had yet to sanction the sport.

The sport's popularity was also noticed by the sports betting community as BodogLife. Initial intentions were for both organizations to be run separately but aligned together with plans to co-promote cards featuring the champions and top contenders from both organizations. On June 18, , Lorenzo Fertitta accommodated the UFC's growth by announcing his resignation from Station Casinos in order to devote his energies to the international business development of Zuffa, particularly the UFC.

Popularity took another major surge in with UFC and the 10 events preceding it including UFC 90 , 91 , 92 , 94 , and UFC was a massive success garnering 1. UFC was unique in that it drew significant interest from ESPN , which provided extensive coverage of the event in the days preceding and following it.

The buzz from UFC was hampered significantly in the second half of after a rash of injuries and other health-related issues [69] [70] —including Brock Lesnar's life-threatening bout with diverticulitis [71] —forcing the organization to continuously scramble and reshuffle its lineup for several events. However, the momentum gradually began to pick up in the first quarter of after victories from defending champions Georges St-Pierre and Anderson Silva, as well as Lyoto Machida's first career defeat to "Shogun" Rua for the UFC Light Heavyweight title.

The event as a whole was critically acclaimed in the media [76] [77] [78] for living up to the hype with a number of exciting fights that were featured on the televised card. The fight produced Velasquez's eighth knockout or technical knockout in his first nine MMA fights. On November 5, the UFC had their first exhibition in New York City after years of being delayed by government officials and red tape with a dramatic first match, Conor McGregor vs.

The WEC held its final card on December 16, As a result of the merger, the UFC absorbed WEC's bantamweight, featherweight and lightweight weight divisions and their respective fighters. I'm extremely proud and happy that I was involved with something that will now be part of what may be, some day, the largest sports organization in the world. Under Zuffa's ownership, Strikeforce made minor changes, including adopting the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts in full, closing the promotion's men's weight classes below lightweight, and ceasing promotion of amateur undercard bouts.

After an extension was reached to continue Strikeforce through , the promotion's heavyweight division sans Heavyweight Grand Prix finalists was merged into the UFC, and the promotion's Challengers series was ended. The final Strikeforce show was Strikeforce: Saffiedine on January 12, , after which the promotion was dissolved and all fighter contracts were either ended or absorbed into the UFC. The deal includes four events on the main Fox network, 32 live Friday night fights per year on their cable network FX , 24 events following The Ultimate Fighter reality show and six separate Fight Night events.

The promotion's first broadcast television event — UFC on Fox: The telecast peaked with 8. One of the other programming opportunities that emerged was a weekly UFC magazine-style show. Fox Sports produced the pre- and post-shows. On November 16, , the eve of UFC She would successfully defend her title six times over a grand total of 1, days, before she was defeated by Holly Holm on November 15, , at UFC On December 11, , the UFC purchased the contracts of 11 female fighters from Invicta Fighting Championships to launch their pound Strawweight division.

Team Melendez , along with eight additional fighters signed up for the tournament via open tryouts. The United Kingdom has been home to 16 events. The first was UFC 38 held in London in Brandao 5 years later. Silva in , and recently with UFC on Fox: Cro Cop 2 in The promotion did not return to Brazil until for UFC , but since then, the country has hosted a further 20 events.

In Asia, the UFC has visited 5 countries. Japan had its first visit in for UFC Japan: Nelson , the seventh event there.

The Ultimate Fighter has had international editions as well: Brazil since , Australia vs. United Kingdom - , China , Canada vs.


Fighters will typically get paid money to fight, called show money, with an additional bonus if they win, called a win bonus. Occasionally, fighters will earn more. For less well-known fighters, they can be several times larger than the contracted amount for the fight. The agreement gives THQ exclusive rights to current and next-generation consoles as well as to PC and handheld titles. Also included are "certain wireless rights" which were not detailed.

The licensing agreement was set to expire in , although it appeared to have been extended to Limited edition versions include fabric walk out tees or paint variations and are limited in number with foil and holographic packaging variances.

As of [update] the schedule envisages the release of these figures in November They have currently been 8 series released and they feature special Legends, Pride, and WEC style figures as well. Three 2 packs series have also been released, as well as several expo and internet exclusives. There are also several different octagon cage playsets that have been released, including the "Octagon Playset", "Official Scale Octagon Playset", and "Electronic Reaction Octagon Playset".

A Pridestyle ring playset was also originally planned; however, no news have been given on its status or release date since then. They have since been released onto boxsets which feature around 10 events each set, in chronological order. UFC on-demand content launched for Xbox on December 20, Subscribers are able to view pay-per-view events in high definition, connect with friends to predict fight results, and have the ability to compare fighter statistics and records.

In Brazil, events are broadcast live on Combate Channel from Globosat. Rede Globo 's are broadcast tape-delayed from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see UFC disambiguation. Women's mixed martial arts. Mixed martial arts weight classes. List of UFC champions.

List of UFC events. List of UFC records. UFC Hall of Fame. Retrieved December 31, Archived from the original on July 10, Retrieved July 2, Retrieved September 23, Retrieved May 12, Archived from the original on July 1, Retrieved June 27, Retrieved November 19, Retrieved October 1, Evolution , Archon Publishing, , 1st ed. Preston, , p. Fighter profile for Keith Hackney , Sherdog.

Fighter profile for Emmanuel Yarborough , Sherdog. Clash of the Titans". Retrieved April 8, The New York Times. Retrieved March 21, Archived from the original on January 29, Retrieved January 20, Retrieved March 27, Signs of life — UFC — Yahoo! The Shape of Things to Come". Archived from the original on August 11, Retrieved September 10, Retrieved August 18, Chuck strikes back — UFC — Yahoo!

UFC 66 Falls Short of 1. Archived from the original on August 18, Retrieved May 26, Archived from the original on April 10, Retrieved March 5, Well-traveled UFC president has big plans for the sport". Retrieved July 22, Archived from the original on September 26, Retrieved September 18, Retrieved October 5, Retrieved January 2, Com July 8, Retrieved on May 3, Archived from the original on July 11, Retrieved July 1, Retrieved November 22, Retrieved July 24, TV by the Numbers.

Retrieved February 13, Retrieved May 8, Numbers hold steady for network-televised event". Archived from the original on January 28, Retrieved August 7, Retrieved December 12, Retrieved February 2, Retrieved April 23, Archived from the original on September 5, Retrieved August 29, Benavidez II ' ".

Retrieved December 19, Local, National NBA ". Retrieved January 31, Retrieved April 25, Retrieved July 29, Miocic Fox show pulls in 2. Retrieved March 14, Retrieved March 25, Retrieved December 11, UFC , plus two more events, on tap for Canada in ". Retrieved June 26, Retrieved April 29, Johnson headlines Stockholm event in January". Retrieved November 12, Werdum Set for June 13 in Mexico City".

Retrieved February 27, Retrieved January 5, Nash May 14, Nash July 29, August 3, — via YouTube. Promotion, fighters argue over discovery, , documents produced". Retrieved May 22, The UFC owners in advanced talks to sell business". Retrieved July 11, Retrieved April 3, Retrieved August 4, Archived from the original on April 3, Retrieved May 19, Retrieved December 3, Fighter rankings will no longer determine Reebok sponsorship pay".

Retrieved April 20, Retrieved June 30, Chapter — Unarmed Combat. Nevada State Athletic Commission. Archived June 15, , at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved August 28, Archived from the original on August 23, Retrieved August 22, Henry Cejudo 2 booked for UFC ".

Max Holloway retains belt, stops Jose Aldo again in third round". Brian Ortega featherweight title bout scheduled for Toronto". Retrieved 2 October Yana Kunitskaya, Frankie Edgar vs. Brian Ortega scheduled for UFC ". Khabib Nurmagomedov dominates Al Iaquinta to become new lightweight champ".

Khabib Nurmagomedov taps out Conor McGregor, brawl ensues". Volkan Oezdemir title fight confirmed for UFC ". Daniel Cormier knocks out Stipe Miocic, cements himself as all-time great". Trying to Understand the "Angry Watching" Phenomenon". Retrieved October 31, Goal is to put on 50 shows per year". Who is Fighting, When And Why". Are too many shows watering down the sport? Retrieved December 29, Professional mixed martial arts organizations. Jungle Fight Shooto Brasil. Ultimate Fighting Championship current champions.

Penn Urijah Faber Ronda Rousey. Stephan Bonnar Matt Hughes vs. Frank Trigg Mark Coleman vs. Pete Williams Dan Henderson vs. Ultimate Fighting Championship events. Shamrock 3 Sanchez vs. Neer Fight for the Troops Lauzon vs.

Palhares Fight for the Troops 2 Nogueira vs. Benavidez 2 Henderson vs. Brown dos Santos vs. Cerrone 2 Johnson vs. Brunson 2 Emmett vs. Poirier 2 Lee vs. Silva Korean Zombie vs. Kampmann 2 Teixeira vs. Henderson 2 Nogueira vs. Khabilov Te Huna vs. Saint Preux Bisping vs. Saint Preux Edgar vs. Cro Cop 2 Miocic vs. Saint Preux Holloway vs.

Henderson 3 Magny vs. Thompson dos Anjos vs. Penn dos Anjos vs. Hall 2 Bader vs. Nogueira 2 Whittaker vs. Korean Zombie Lewis vs. Branch Saint Preux vs. Edwards dos Santos vs. Korean Zombie Magny vs. Ngannou 2 dos Santos vs. Retrieved from " https: Ultimate Fighting Championship establishments in the United States Mixed martial arts organizations Ultimate Fighting Championship television series Organizations established in Kohlberg Kravis Roberts companies.

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Mixed martial arts promotion. Las Vegas , Nevada , U. Throughout the years, things were happening, and everything always looked bleak. It always looked like, this is it, this is going to be the last time. This is going to be the last year. The energy of that fight, it was phenomenal, and it was the first time I honestly said, it's going to make it. I also provide some examples that we myself and one, or more, of my associates along with me have experienced in the last few years, which will change over time to keep them recent and relevant.

The actual observations will constitute an objective reality to the listener. However, the listener's reaction to those same observations will, of course, always be personal and subjective, and may differ greatly from my descriptions, and from other audiophiles.

In fact, in my experience For the most fanatical and enthusiastic audiophiles, a Level 3 observation may still trigger a Level 5 reaction. In stark contrast, some "objectivist" listeners will only acknowledge Level 1 to 3 improvements at most! Important Note - It has been my long-term observation that it's easier to hear an improvement in sonics than to hear a deterioration. This is true, in my experience, for both veteran and novice audiophiles.

This general rule is the reason why cartridge and tube deterioration, and many other sonic problems some temporary , are not quickly recognized. Confirmation of what you just heard isn't as obvious or easy as you expected. Example- Ars Acoustica Prototype I.

Cable between the Jadis phono stage and the line stage. Level 2- The sonic improvement can be heard when both switching components and then when switching back, but it is no longer specifically or easily heard after a short period of time; sometimes seconds, but almost always less than one minute. Example- Coincident Extreme Shotgun I. Ars Acoustica Prototype I. Level 3- The sonic improvement can be heard at length , but an effort may be required to listen specifically for it, so it may not be "obvious" or inescapable.

This improvement may or may not be significant; meaning there's a chance that an audiophile may be able to remove this improvement from their system and still not suffer from its absence.

Level 4- The sonic improvement can be heard all the time , and without any effort , by an audiophile. However, it's still actually possible for it to be not heard by ordinary listeners, meaning those people with no interest in sound quality. This improvement is still "significant"; so a serious audiophile will almost always suffer from its absence. Level 5- The sonic improvement can be heard at all times by anyone with healthy hearing, including listeners with no interest in sound quality.

The improvement is now always "significant"; meaning an audiophile can no longer enjoy their system without this specific improvement. Level 6- The sonic improvement is "transformational" ; meaning not only would it be completely unthinkable to live without it, but the improvement actually alters an audiophile's thinking and perspective on both their particular system and "Audio" in general.

These different levels do not correlate exactly with numbers or percentages. It is very possible that component "B" will still receive a higher level than "A" to the audiophile, especially if the improved area is more highly valued.

Also, while the first two Levels leave basically no room for "nuance", since they are so subtle and tightly defined to begin with, the medium and higher Levels 3 to 6 do have smaller iterations or degrees within them, such as 4. In fact, even a "difference in kind" still has some "variety" or a range, since their degree and impact are not all exactly the same, even if the practical end results are the same. Levels 3 and 4 are both very similar to each other, and the most common to experience when making actual comparisons.

Further, a "strong 3" and a "weak 4" are basically the same in practice and interchangeable in effect. Finally, below is how I used numbers to illustrate why I was so enthusiastic about the Graham Phantom Supreme compared to the earlier II it replaced, when the differences I described didn't appear to be that significant Most audiophiles would agree that the difference between the numbers 95 and 97 is marginal.

Sometimes a change in perspective clarifies an otherwise confusing subject. CAVEAT- Please be advised that the readers' letters posted on this site are solely the opinion of that reader and may not necessarily represent or reflect the opinions of Arthur Salvatore. Further- Almost all of the Readers Letters that are removed from this file, after the standard 12 Month posting such as the October Readers Letters , are subsequently posted in their respective Reference Component Files: This article has been moved to a new location: February Recent File.

This article is a summary of the cumulative observations and recommendations included within this website as concisely as possible.

Below is the best advice I can provide as this is written and it will be updated if and when necessary. This summary will be relevant if the ultimate goal of the reader is to maximize the natural, accurate and complete musical communication that is possible with modern audio components. It is designed to work with the largest variety of musical software available to us today, and particularly if it is acoustical in nature.

I obviously realize that there are other serious alternatives, and with easily noticeable advantages to my approach. However, in my experience, they all have a larger number of serious compromises with a greater variety of music. Further, none of the recommendations I make below have to cost a huge amount of money, and all the steps can be made over a period of time. Explanation- Idler-drives have a fundamental sonic advantage over belt-drive turntables; speed stability , which is grossly under appreciated by most audiophiles.

Idlers' inherent disadvantage, noise transference , has now been reduced to insignificance by using modern plinths, bearings and improved motor isolation. In short, idler-drives overcame their original problem economically , while belt-drives have not and apparently can not. Direct-drives are still an unanswered question. Reel-to-reel tapes have even more sonic potential, but they're a serious hassle to use for most audiophiles and good software is also extremely limited.

A Moving-Coil or Strain-gauge or Optical? Explanation- Moving-coils have several technical advantages due to their low-mass and low inductance combined with higher overall energy output, making them worth the extra expense under most circumstances. Explanation- Every outstanding digital player we have heard has used an Esoteric transport. Until computer audio is finally mature, an actual digital disc player is still the best and safest approach, which means an Esoteric transport should be part of the equation.

There are usually many used Esoteric players for sale at large discounts. They are also incredibly well built and reliable, which is another important factor. Esoteric OEM transports are also used in non-Esoteric players as well. The DAC, after it inevitably becomes obsolete, can always be updated. The Electronics should be Separates , and using Tubes , with the one possible exception of the bass amplifiers.

Explanation- Tube electronics still have noticeable and important sonic advantages over even the finest transistor models. Separate components offer both the greatest potential performance and flexibility, including mono amplifiers. Explanation- All the finest systems I've ever heard were bi-amplified with subwoofers. This is not a coincidence. When the amplifier driving the midrange and tweeters is not effected by the sub woofers which would have their own dedicated amps , there are important if not fundamental sonic advantages that any audiophile can hear.

Even if the bi-ampable speaker can not be bi-amped when first purchased for whatever reason , that option is still available in the future. SET amplifiers have important sonic advantages in the midrange and highs over any other amplifier design in my experience, especially with acoustical music. They have the lowest sound-floor and are the best "organized" and music is simply "organized sound". Explanation- Some audiophiles may consider this as more of a refinement, but I don't feel that way.

The cumulative sonic improvements, discussed in the article linked to below, are easily observed and much too important to ignore. Explanation- Most systems require an active line stage for optimum performance, but a passive line stage, or volume pot, can be used if the source has the required energy to directly drive the amplifier s.

If successful, there will be both improved performance and money saved, so an experiment is always in order. See the Link below. Audiophiles should experiment with high-quality Super Tweeters. Explanation- Most systems require a good super tweeter for optimum performance. Proper set-up and implementation are critical for success, so time, effort and patience are required.

Dedicated Digital Systems should always have the signal remain in the "Digital Domain" for as long as possible. Explanation- Digital's most noticeable sonic weaknesses occur during the unavoidable conversions: This strategy also minimizes the length of the analogue chain as well, which is another sonic benefit.

Individually , most of these refinements will be subtle in effect, but collectively they will almost always be significant in their effect. They are usually the difference between the "Excellent" and the truly "Great" Systems. Capacitors - Teflon in the direct signal path and all film metallized in the high voltage power supply. These are the articles and essays which describe and explain, sometime in great detail, the respective experiences and reasons why I specifically chose each of the "Structures" and "Bonus Suggestions" mentioned above:.

I decided to both expand upon, and yet still simplify, my earlier article, seen above, titled: Building a Great Audio System. This time I will argue that there is a single most important choice an audiophile can make when creating a great audio system or, at the least, creating the finest audio system for the least amount of money invested. That critical choice is unambiguously simple:. There are several practical reasons why this is the best choice a serious audiophile can ever make, as well as actual science to support it.

First we'll focus on the practical reasons, which almost all involve maximizing the flexibility and the unlimited options resulting from this initial choice:. All these amplifier types are compatible with this choice of speaker.

The amplifier choice thus becomes strictly one of audio quality , not quantity, which eliminates the frustrating compromises that other audiophiles must accept and live with. With a high-efficiency speaker, other formerly impractical options now become possible. The system may no longer require the extra gain of an active line stage, which means a passive line stage, or a hybrid model like "The Truth" , is now an option.

Bi-amping the speaker is also an option; now, later or never, with the added benefit that the speaker can utilize any combination of amplifiers, based on your own musical preferences and budget. Lower power, everything else being equal, also means lower cost , so there is even a monetary advantage to this important choice. Passive line stages are also less expensive than equivalent active line stages, obviously. I have now lived with high-efficiency speakers for 25 years and I have never looked back.

It is the most positively consequential choice I have ever made in my audio life. Countless other audiophiles have done the same, both before and after me, and it is unusual to learn of anyone who later reversed themselves. There are good reasons why these audiophiles remain "faithful": The advantages when using high-efficiency speakers are far too important in sonics, component flexibility and savings, to ever give up. Then there's the Science. It's all about Energy I am NOT a "scientist", though I do have a basic understanding of the science underlaying audio.

Many other audiophiles can make the same claim as I, while others know far more about audio science than I ever will, but what I am about to theorize is something anyone can understand.

My theory is based on an indisputable reality. Further, I believe it is rational, logical and thus irrefutable. Once again, it is founded on a simple truth and fact: High-Efficiency speakers require less energy to perform at the same level as "normal" speakers.

Further, serious Audio is just about recreating, as closely as possible, the original energy, of the original performance, in your listening room. High-Efficiency HF is the most important and critical advantage in audio.

HF speakers require less energy from outside sources to achieve the same level of performance. The energy from those "outside sources" is always imperfect and compromised. Accordingly, the less energy from "outside sources" included in the total energy created by the system, the less compromised the sound will be.

And, to be clear, "outside sources" specifically mean electronic phono stages, DACs, active line stages and power amplifiers. All of these electronic components are imperfect and "enemies" of music, though all of them are also unfortunately necessary for the reproduction of music using modern technology.

In short, the less energy or "influence" required from "outside sources" electronic components , the higher the quality of total energy created by the system, everything else being equal. It's the classic "quantity versus quality" compromise and quandary.

To make my point as clear as I can, I need to use a highly unlikely scenario: This scenario would actually eliminate power amplification all together. This is just a fantasy for now, but I'm arguing that even minor steps taken in this direction will have positive results.

Only an attenuator would separate the two components. Anything else is a necessary for now compromise. The less energy an audio system uses from "outside sources", the better chance that system has to be natural and faithful to the original musical source.

So, the goal for serious audiophiles is simple: Reduce the energy required from your compromised outside power sources AC , to the greatest degree possible. High-Efficiency speakers, more so than any other audio choice, achieve that goal. Further- Almost all of the Readers Letters that are removed from this file, after the standard 12 Month posting such as the November Readers Letters , are subsequently posted in their respective Reference Component Files: This past summer, a reader informed me of his project to improve the Avantgarde Duo Omega horn speaker system, which has always had easily noticeable bass frequency problems when using the standard woofers.

The reader's project is obviously an extreme solution, but it appears to have been successfully accomplished and I felt the information he has generously provided me should be shared.

The details below encompass his entire system, because the reader also shares my "system approach" to audio. Here are the most informative parts of the various letters he has sent me over the past 5 months, plus a picture and a diagram as well. There's only minor editing and my bold:. As you found, the original Duo woofer is incapable of keeping up with the horns. It can produce a lot of bass, just not good bass, I tried 2 and even 3 sets of them at the same time, and even though it was better it was not even close to good enough.

I am speaking about the original design, as I have not heard the current one. I found the upgrade to the Omega drivers was a significant and worthwhile investment. I consulted with Jeffrey Jackson at Experience Music http: He recommended a bass horn as the only logical option to use with other horns. I considered the Avantgarde bass horns, but dismissed them for 2 reasons. It is a subwoofer with a flared mouth.

Secondly, it is ridiculously expensive for what it is. Jeffery suggested a 16 foot horn that could be driven to satisfactory levels and beyond with a watt amplifier. It will get down to 30 Hz with no problem, given proper amplification. Since I wanted to keep the horns aligned vertically, that necessitated building a custom stand to hold the red horns.

Jeffrey calculated the expansion and provided a suggested build plan. It was built in sections then glued together with biscuits and the help of a brad nailer. I included pictures of some of the sections so you can see how it went together.

The Avantgarde woofer on the top of the bass horn is just sitting there to add lbs of mass to it. I first built the mouth. Once it was completed we decided to move. Since it was too wide to get through the door I cut it in 2 horizontally and reassemble in the new house. You can see it in 2 pieces in one picture. I first tried a single SET amp with a first order choke filter for the bass.

This was very good, but with a 3 way system it was too tempting not to try to tri-amp it, so I built a 6 channel SET amp, which was also constructed under the guidance of Jeffrey. Details on the amp later. The problem with a 16 foot horn is that the bass is 15 mSec behind the mid and tweeter. That can be solved by physically aligning them.

I have a 30 foot room so I could have done it, but it just took up too much space as it is a multifunction room. So how do you get a 15 mSec delay? Pure Vinyl software PV: Using PV opens up a lot of possibilities. Not only did I get time delay, it also has a many other features. Digital files are on a hard drive connected to the Mac Mini which is running PV. It works with iTunes as the file manager and PV does all of the processing such as upsampling if you choose to use it.

It will go up to K as will the Apogee. My hard core analog friends told me it could not possibly sound very good with all of that processing along with digitizing the vinyl. One told me I would be listening to high frequency square waves. One of the advantages of this set up is the precise control of crossover points.

It allows you to digitally set them, choose slopes for each driver, trim the volumes individually if needed, and set the time delay. PV also works with plug ins if you choose to apply EQ or other processing. Another huge advantage is the ability to hook the output of the power amp directly to each driver with no passive crossovers, which eliminates the associated phase shifts and frequency anomalies.

Using PV to set the delay is very easy. First calculate the approximate amount of delay which is 16 feet divided by the speed of sound. Set the delay initially to that point. Play a tone at the crossover frequency and use PV to invert the mid. Then using a microphone and a pro audio interface to display the spectrum you will see a spike at that frequency.

Slowly adjust the delay back and forth until you get a null. You can also adjust the gain of one or the other until you get the deepest null which will be where the outputs of the 2 are equal as they should be at that frequency.

Put it back to non-inverted and you are done. So now onto the amps. One is the aforementioned 6 channel SET. The bass channel is a direct coupled to a 2A3 in a stacked configuration. The mid and tweeter channels are the same except they use a 46 on the output.

The power supply is choke input. I am now experimenting with a Naim which is a 6 channel 30 WPC amp built in The bass is undoubtedly superior. However, it is very good and having never heard the SET would be very happy with it. I believe I have settled into a final as final can be configuration. Of course things may change down the line. By that I mean I can sit down and listen to music. I am not sitting down to think about what could be better or different.

I am in a good place. The last piece of the puzzle was volume control, as I have too much gain from source through amps to my dB speakers.. I worked with Placette on a 6 channel RVC, which they built for me. It is silent to the point you have to put your ear to the speaker to hear a tiny amount of hiss. Like you I was firmly in the tube SET camp, but these things are amazing. At 80 WPC they are overkill for my horns, but I believe the headroom does really affect the overall sound versus a watt SET… effortless.

I encourage you to audition them. I initially had 3 Naim in a tri-amp configuration. I then went with biamp using the crossover in the Avantgarde tweeter the mid runs full range rolling off naturally on both ends. The Lino can be configured with or without RIAA, mine is without, just a cartridge preamp, a head amp.

Typically in a setup like this you use the microphone input of the interface for the MC cartridge, but the Apogee mic input is a separate card, which I do not have, so I am using the Lino instead. The advantage is that a mic input does not usually provide the proper load for the cartridge, the Lino does as well as being a very high quality head amp.

The remote volume control is a non-negotiable option so the Placette presented a very enticing solution. I find most recordings have a very narrow volume range where they are optimal and getting up and down to re-adjust is not going to happen here.

If you find that sweet spot it is optimal. This reader has used a number of the "Structures" that I recommend in my article: The reader diverges from my structures mainly by entering the digital domain, but he "goes all the way" by staying there, thus taking advantage of digital's strengths and minimizing the weaknesses, which are usually the conversions; analogue to digital and back to analogue. This is the reason why I admire and appreciate his approach, and I made the decision to feature it on this website.

In short, to pay my highest compliment to the reader: I would love to hear his system! Finally, this reader has generously offered to assist any audiophile who would like to implement and integrate his hardware and software choices. If interested, simply contact me and I will then forward the letter to the helpful reader. The Wyetech Ruby is the finest solid-state phono stage I have ever heard and it is also the most versatile, in gain, loading and filter settings.

Three of my associates , all of them with decades of experience, have also heard the Ruby in my system, and at completely different times which insured independence. These three associates agree with my overall assessment of the Ruby, even to the point of using very similar descriptive language of its strengths and weaknesses.

The Ruby was completely broken-in before the auditions. I experimented extensively with different gain settings, and load settings, and this effort produced a noticeable sonic improvement, while also providing me the confidence that the Ruby was optimized see below. The Ruby's sonic performance is easy to describe: It is very fast, detailed, clean, quiet and neutral.

It also has a large sound stage and good separation and focus, due, I assume, to its exceptional dual-mono power supply. The Ruby is the closest I've yet heard, in overall sonic performance, to the best tube models. However, I must also note that the Ruby still does not have all the most desirable qualities that the best tube phono stages provide.

The sound-floor is not quite as low as the finest tube units, which noticeably compromises decays, fluidity, harmonic bloom, micro dynamics and macro dynamics, so the Ruby sounds generally more "mechanical" by direct comparison. Also negatively effected are the reproduction of natural body and space. The Ruby is also the most flexible phono stage I've yet experienced; in gain, loading and filtering, and it is user friendly in all those areas.

The Ruby is very well built and all the required tools are provided, as well as an excellent operating manual with documentation see pictures below. This amazing result, which is unprecedented in my experience, means that even the finest MC SUT or "head-amp" is redundant when using the Ruby.

The Wyetech Ruby is the best option I am currently aware of for those serious audiophiles who want the maximum amount of sonic benefits of using tubes, but without using tubes, and with no related compromise of the sonic benefits of using transistors.

Further, the Ruby also has the added bonus that no step-up device will ever be required, regardless of the cartridge used. Further, while I placed the Ruby in Reference Phono Stages Class B Upper , I also believe it is very possible that some audiophiles, in particular those that appreciate and value what tubes can do, will still prefer some tube models in the lower reference categories, which is why I emphasized "overall" when describing its general performance.

The Ruby is not "The Best" in my opinion, but it is "the best of its type" I've yet heard, for now. Further- Almost all of the Readers Letters that are removed from this file, after the standard 12 Month posting such as the December Readers Letters , are subsequently posted in their respective Reference Component Files: Important Note- Due to a number of unforeseen setbacks and delays that were suffered in the last two years, I have been unable to complete the cable survey that I began in January I have decided it is best to repost the beginning of the unfinished survey, and then finish it in stages, as time and circumstances permit.

This will allow interested readers to find the remainder of the cable survey in one convenient location, which will also include direct links to the earlier material. As any serious reader of this website knows, I am not a "cable guy". I'm not curious and I can't get enthusastic about cables, of any type, and will even avoid changing them as a rule.

This is why I removed most of the content on cables on this website many years ago and rarely write about them. This wasn't always the case. When I had my audio store in the 's, I was completely up to date on cables, experimenting with every version I could get my hands on. Back then, the entire concept of cables having an effect on the performance of an audio system was still new, so almost all serious audiophiles were interested in learning and experimenting to find the right combination to maximize the performance of their system.

Then, the inevitable happened. One cable company I believe MIT decided to come out with a cable that was outrageously priced for back then , especially considering how it was manufactured. When no one called them out on the cost, which back then meant only TAS and Stereophile , the cable game changed permanently and eventually negatively effected the pricing structure of real components as well.

From that initial "seed", we now have cables that cost more than high quality cars, with "reviewers" even describing them as "good value". I had a really good reason for this disgust, my own experiences, shared by many others. Example- Here is the first experience I had which "removed the scales" from my eyes. Ironically, the other audiophile present at the time is directly involved in the experiments now taking place in Around 30 years ago, I was a dealer for MIT which is still in business.

I sold so much of their cable that I used to purchase some of it in spools and then terminate it myself, which saved my customers money. Then they came out with the MH speaker cable, of unprecedented size and cost, with the claim that it was far superior to anything else ever made. I, of course, ordered it for the store. I was quite pleased with its performance, which proved to be superior to anything I had in the store at the time.

When I told my closest audiophile friend, Israel Blume , that I had the MH in the store, he begged me to bring them to his place so he could hear them himself, in his own system.

So the following Sunday I found myself at his home for a direct comparison with his own speaker cable, which just happened to be Polk , a mainly forgotten cable that had been considered dangerous to use with many transistor amplifiers and had been eventually discontinued. I was so confident of the superiority of the MIT, that I almost felt sad for the poor old Polk, thinking how bad it would sound in comparison to this latest design.

While Blume had configured the Polks so that there were now 4 Polk cables in parallel , I believed that this change wouldn't make that much of a difference.

He played a variety of music, but mainly some excellent selections from Harmonia Mundi , which were very revealing of cable performance.

In short, the Polks won, and by a huge margin. We were both shocked. Further, our "faith" in the magazines' judgment was irreversibly compromised as well.

Many more negative experiences like this would later finish this "divorce" process. Compared to the multiple Polks, the MIT sound muffled, veiled, slow and dead. Anyone could have noticed what we observed, not just audiophiles.

The MIT actually sounded horrible, and almost defective, in comparison. We went back and forth that afternoon, even playing both cables at the same time to try to understand what we were hearing. Blume later reduced that one last advantage by cutting his existing cables in half, thereby reducing the length in half, and then re-soldering them so they were now 8 cables per channel. More than 8 cables had no further benefit in our experience.

This was a highly tedious and unpleasant job the fumes are toxic. I soon followed his lead in my own system. With the Polk I already had laying around unused in my closet and a customer purchase, I built a 6' pair with 8 cables in parallel, and have used Polk speaker cables in my own personal system ever since then.

I now have a 3' pair with 6 cables in parallel, which has even less resistance than the initial 6' pair, which I later sold.

Around 15 years later, I had another enlightening experience with cables, this time in my store and with many more people involved:. In early , my audio store's last year of operation, I received the latest version of the Coincident CST Interconnect cable. Israel Blume, the designer, was very happy with the results and he asked me to compare it to any cable I had in the store, at any price, so I did. I just happened to have the top-of-the-line Wireworld Gold Eclipse III silver interconnects, the best I had ever heard for line-level signals, and very expensive for that time.

Any person who entered the store was allowed in the room to make the comparison, with the only two conditions being they had to hear both cables for an entire cut of the same music and also promise to be honest and forthcoming in their observations and opinion no "holding back".

I was so sick of that one cut after that weekend, that I haven't played it even once in the last 15 years! I am no longer able to remember the power amplifier and speakers I used in the comparisons, but I do remember using the Ah Tjoeb 99 , which was the best CD player I knew for the money back then.

This quest for objectivity required a strict protocol, to make the tests as "blind" as possible. This is how the test was set-up:. The Ah Tjoeb had only one pair of stereo outputs which is normal , so I connected a pair of high quality, gold-plated, Y-Jacks Vampire Wire to the outputs to convert them to dual two outputs. The in-between Input 2 on the Aleph, still unused, became the de facto "Mute" position.

Thus the test was completely fair to both cables since everything remained exactly the same for them when switching back and forth, including, critically, the volume. Approximately 25 people took the test and the results were 24 to 1 in favor of the Coincident CST. These results surprised me. Not only didn't I believe such a consensus was possible when it came to anything involved with audio, the results also directly contradicted a "Rule" continually spouted by so-called and self-described "Audio Objectivists" for many years.

The fact that all the listeners, with one exception the final listener no less , still preferred the more laid back CST, which also wasn't quite as immediate, proved to be another surprise to me. The Coincident did have more body, warmth and was also better at separating the musicians in the ensemble.

The CST proved to be more natural overall, and that ended up trumping the more exciting Wireworld. I frankly didn't expect those results, instead thinking that the two cables would have a similar number of adherents in the end. Maybe today's justifiable audio cynicism goes back further than we think.

Finally, I have to admit that I had a lot more fun than I expected while I conducted these tests, which would have been extremely tedious otherwise. What happened was this: As I mentioned above, I soon realized that every listener was easily able to distinguish the two cables from each other, no matter what I did or played, so the only real test left for them was deciding which cable they felt was better. The listeners were incredulous that any so-called "audio expert" could actually believe, and then state, such an absurdity, in public, since it was so obviously false and easily contradicted.

The listeners, and I, couldn't resist joking about this "theory", at the direct expense of Aczel and Kruger, during both afternoons. Unfortunately, what I really wished for the most, an actual "audio objectivist" present and involved with these tests, never occurred during this weekend. There have been 4 generations of Coincident cables. Below are the dates when they were introduced, plus their respective retail prices. My notes and relevant commentary are below each generation.

They were the only models that I ever sold in my audio store. The CST interconnect was also involved in the shootout described above. I have used the CST power cords in my personal system from until the present, which is quite a run. Personal Notes on Extreme- I have had extensive experience with this second generation of Coincident cables. I currently use Extreme interconnects between the line stage and subwoofer amplifiers, plus the Extreme speaker cables are used for the subwoofers.

I also currently use one Extreme power cord. The Extreme interconnects sound almost exactly the same as the Ars Acoustica prototype, but the Extreme has better bass. I never compared the CST and Extreme power cords. Personal Notes on Shotgun- I have very limited experience with this generation, though the little I had was quite positive.

The Shotguns are essentially a "doubled up" version of the Extreme, and they are, accordingly, also twice the price. I have only heard the Shotgun interconnects and they are the finest I've ever heard for line-level signals, bettering both the Extreme and the Ars Acoustica.

I'm currently using the Shotgun cables between the Jadis phono stage and the Coincident line stage. I have not heard the Shotgun speaker cables. Personal Notes on Statement- These are the cables presently being evaluated. I have every version that is available except the "Balanced" XLR.

The Statements are actually selling for substantially less money than their previous generation Shotgun equivalents, despite 5 years of added inflation. Israel Blume informed me that the basic designs of the Statement cables were accomplished a number of years ago, but only recent technological advances in cable manufacturing have allowed them to be built to his complete satisfaction.

The comparisons of power cables have been completed and are now posted. They can be read in a dedicated file: I've been very fortunate when it comes to speaker cables.

More than 30 years ago, I discovered the unique sonic attributes of the Polk speaker cables see "Shocking" anecdote above. Since then, I've auditioned numerous speaker cables, but not one of them has matched the Polks when using the most revealing amplifiers SET designs and speakers. Interestingly, for half this period I also owned an audio store, so what did I tell my customers? If they asked, I always admitted using the Polk in my personal system rather than a speaker cable I was selling in the store at the time.

However, only a handful of my customers ever followed me during all those years. The vast majority of them had heard that the Polk was dangerous to use with transistor amplifiers, and also difficult to construct properly cutting and soldering 4 or more cables in parallel.

So they felt it just wasn't worth it. The Polk cable also has one serious performance qualifier: It does not have truly impactive bass though the quality of the bass is superb , so I've always used other speaker cables on the various subwoofers I've had over this same period of time.

In the last decade or so, I've used the Coincident Extreme cables for the subwoofers, as I found them to have both outstanding detail and impact, an ideal combination. This brings us to the present. Further- Almost all of the Readers Letters that are removed from this file, after the standard 12 Month posting such as the January Readers Letters , are subsequently posted in their respective Reference Component Files: There are now four different "Truth" line stages.

Three of the four models have already been auditioned in my system and there's also one final version which is scheduled to be built in This current set of four versions of "The Truth" does NOT contain any of the versions of "The Truth" prior to the earliest model that I first heard in , and eventually reported on in March I believe it is also important to note that, according to the designer and builder of "The Truth" line stage, Ed Schilling; "the actual circuit itself is unchanged from the first one built in ".

This report will not directly compare "The Truth" to any other line stage, passive or active, since I already went through that important exercise in The Original Truth Review which I strongly advise reading first to understand the perspective and details of this report.

The purpose of this report is straightfoward, I am simply comparing the various versions of "The Truth" I've heard to each other , which will provide potential purchasers, and current owners, a greater information base as to how to proceed in the future. Starting from scratch, below is a basic description of the four versions of "The Truth" that I've either already auditioned, or will soon audition. The original version of "The Truth", now designated here as the T1 , which I received in and reported on in March Link to Review.

This model of "The Truth" was originally purchased by my associate at the full retail price. My friend eventually sold this model to me when he later decided that he wanted a new version of "The Truth" with gain which I felt I didn't need. This inevitably leads us to the next version This model arrived in May and is designated here as the T2. The T2 had a number of important differences between it and the original T1: Two power supplies; Two separate cases including a dedicated power supply ; two high-quality and expensive transformers , one per channel, for gain ; high quality internal wiring ; improved light diodes and NO remote volume control capability.

This existing T2 will eventually be converted into the T4 , see below. This model arrived in October and is designated here as the T3. The T3 model replaced the T1 and is now my current personal version of "The Truth". The T3 is different than either the T1 or the T2. The T3 still has a remote volume control; an additional second power supply; high quality copper and silver internal wiring; the improved light diodes and a single newer case.

This final version of "The Truth", designated here as the T4 , has yet to be built as this is written. The T4 will be an updated version of the existing T2, with a different step-up transformer, which provides the gain, and maybe some other changes as well in the internal wiring and the power supply. We hope to have the T4 available for audition and evaluation sometime in Summer In January , an associate and very close friend visited me for a few days in my Florida home.

He was very interested in hearing "The Truth" T1 line stage, which he had purchased in and had subsequently shipped directly to me first for evaluation. My friend, a Canadian, did not have a system at the time which he felt was adequate to properly evaluate the T1.

My associate, who was extremely familiar with my system, could not have been more impressed with the T1, and he is probably the most critical listener I know which is saying something.

He felt the performance gap between the T1 and every other line stage he had ever heard was "huge", and that group included not only the Coincident Statement and the EMIA , both of which he had heard in my system, but also the ultra-expensive models from Conrad Johnson, Audio Research and many others. However, my friend had one serious problem with the T1, and it was not either its "garage cosmetics" or its "useless remote control". The problem that bothered him was strictly related to ultimate volume levels and gain.

It was not possible to increase the gain of either the MC SUT or the phono stage or the amplifiers for that matter , so that left only the T1 remaining to modify. The T1 circuit does not allow any gain, so the only serious and least compromised solution was to add a step-up transformer somewhere in the circuit of the T1.

It is an understatement to say that I was simply sceptical of this "solution". I felt the unprecedented performance of the T1 was well worth the minor downside of a few records unable to reach their optimum volume level. However, my friend felt we could "have it all"; sufficient gain and with no sonic compromises, because, in his opinion , the expensive transformers he was considering were "almost perfect".

I had to hold back laughing at the time, and I confidently predicted that the ultimate sonic performance of this new version of "The Truth" would be much closer to the Coincident Statement and EMIA which both use outstanding transformers themselves than the original T1.

Still, to be both practical and positive, I eventually came up with a design for the new model that satisfied both of us. This design was entirely based on utilizing the existing basic block circuit of the T1. The T1 and T3 basic circuit is: My T2 circuit design was simple and obvious: With this circuit, we could hear the transformer without any compromise, since its dedicated input buffer would ensure that the signal reaching it was not compromised. Meanwhile, the other three inputs would be completely uneffected by the additional dedicated buffer and the SUT.

This means that these three inputs could then be directly compared to Input 1 to observe any sonic differences, if they existed. In effect, 3 of the 4 inputs 2, 3, and 4 were still equivalent to the T1, while input 1 was, in effect, the new T2. However, my friend and I wanted to go even further We then agreed that if we were going to invest and risk the time and money to create a new version of "The Truth", the extra gain was not enough of a change on its own.

In short, we wanted "to go all the way". We even wanted a separate dedicated case for the two power supplies. After that, we couldn't think of anything else to change, so we ordered the parts and waited for Ed Schilling to build the T2 without any time constraints or any other compromises.

In the end, the new T2 arrived at my home in May The T2 was already well broken-in by Ed Schilling before it arrived, though I still broke it in further by using a highly challenging CD on "Repeat". I needed to be completely confident that neither Input 1 nor Input 2 would have any unfair advantage. As it turned out, the OCC copper wire required hours of break-in for it to sound its best. I then auditioned the T2 in my system for around a week, on my own, before my associate arrived.

I made my usual detailed notes, though I did not communicate anything of substance to my associate in an effort to reduce any possibility of confirmation bias on his part. Meanwhile, there was another important change between the T1 and the T2, though it was totally unrelated to the sonics Ed Schilling had earlier mentioned to me that the photo cells the internal devices utilized to change the volume level had been updated in the T2.

Schilling had further cautioned me that this change would have no effect on the sonics. However, I still noticed that the "action" of the volume control of the T2 was much different than the heavily criticized T1. To be clear, unlike the T1, the T2 did not have virtually the entire usable volume range confined to two hours or less.

With the new photo cells installed in the T2, it was now more like 4 to 5 hours of play. In fact, I now theorized that the optional remote control, previously useless , could finally be used successfully, but fate interceded; The T2 did not have a remote control, so I would have to patiently wait for the T3 for verification. I played Input 1 first of course. I had to know immediately if, and how, the SUT had any effect on the sonics.

Unfortunately it did have an effect, and it was, not surprisingly, virtually all for the worse. The SUT did provide more than 10 dB of gain, which could be of critical importance for some systems, but the sound was veiled, and to such a degree that any audiophile should easily notice it.

The same 1 SUT input also lost some musical information as well as compromising the T1's exciting sense of "nakedness" and "directness", which made it so special and unique. I was disappointed with these results, but not surprised. After listening to a some other very familiar cuts for confirmation, I moved on to Input 2 , which bypassed the SUT, but still had the new copper OCC internal wire.

I of course played the same music with Input 2 as I had with Input 1. The Results - Not only did Input 2 prove to be sonically superior to Input 1, which was predictable, it was also an improvement over the T1 as well.

In short, the T2 was now a sonic advancement of the T1, even though its gain stage, which could be bypassed, was a step-back, at least for now. This meant that the T2's sound-floor was a little lower. In most other sonic areas, the T1 and T2 sounded the same: Immediacy, dynamics, sound stage size and focus, frequency range, purity, neutrality etc.

However, the T2 had one final sonic surprise in store for us. The bass on the T2 was noticeably tighter, more controlled, detailed and cleaner than the T1 which already had the finest bass reproduction I had ever heard , though it was not deeper. In fact, the overall improvement in the bass was large enough for my associate to finally find acceptable the unavoidable and now reduced sonic gap between the Acapella Ion Tweeters and the reference system's subwoofers.

For him this was critical, because he strongly believed that the Ion tweeters exposed, and even brought undesirable attention to, the inevitable compromises in the bass frequencies, which were previously masked see the review of the Acapella Ion Tweeters above for the details. The T2's stellar bass reproduction was actually able to change his perspective. In the end, my associate was more impressed with the T2 than I was, though, to be frank, he was also more disappointed with the sonics of the Input 1 gain stage than I was, especially since it was his idea in the first place.

However, my friend is absolutely not giving up on Input 1, since he is well aware that there is more than just one high quality SUT in the audio universe, but this important issue of gain now goes into hibernation until we reach the final stage of our experiments, the T4 , which doesn't even exist yet.

In fact, we still have to properly investigate the T3. After confirmation that the T2, at its best , sonically outperformed the T1 which was my Personal Reference , it was obvious that the T1 would now have to be upgraded, thus becoming the new T3.

But how, since there were several options to consider? My first choice was easy; I would pass on using a SUT for gain, especially after hearing the disappointing results with the T2. The remaining choices required more thought I knew I had to use the superior internal OCC wire based on the positive results of the T2, but there was a choice there as well: The T2 used only the copper wire, so if I chose the copper as well, I knew for certain that the T3 would have the same degree of improvement, but what about the silver?

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is an American mixed martial arts promotion company based in Las Vegas, Nevada, that is owned and operated by parent company William Morris Endeavor. It is the largest MMA promotion company in the world and features the highest-level fighters on the roster. The UFC produces events . The Acapella TW 1S was added to the Class A Reference Speakers back in January This action was somewhat unusual since I had not heard the tweeters in my own audio system, or even in a friend's system that I was familiar with. Instead, four straight days of concentrated auditions, at the CES, compelled me to give them the . Dr. Brian Pearson is an Assistant Professor of Landscape, Ornamental, and Protected Crop Management at the University of Florida, but his unofficial title is “The Florida Hop Guy.” Pearson is a homebrewer who one day asked his homebrew shop owner if he had any local hops. When told they cannot.