The Hifi Podcast with Darren and Duncan episodes 01-05

The Hifi Podcast with Darren and Duncan episodes 01-05


Episode 01

Darren and Duncan break down their opinions on single ended triode amplifiers and their use with speakers with no crossover — single driver full range speakers. Duncan talks about his DIY corner horns and his latest amplifier purchase – a Decware Mini Torii SEP (pentode) 3.9 Watt tube amplifier and how good it sounds in his new bedroom audio system.

Engineer Darren explains why so much of this is good for an audiophile experience, and talks about distortion profiles, the difference between SET and push pull designs, how tape is similar in some ways to a good push pull, and why people like what they hear when they’re hearing high distortion, high output impedance single ended amplifiers.

Episode 02

In audio’s past, folks have tried to get along without a subwoofer or subwoofers in the mix. From modern production capabilities to the intentional limits of excellent speakers, the guys explain that subwoofers are an essential part of great speaker systems.

Touching on a few makes and models out there, Darren zeroes in on what type of subwoofer drivers make the most linear – or truthful – bass. He also touches on his upcoming DIY subwoofer project and outlines his choices for that.

Episode 03

Some hifi companies, like Boulder’s PS Audio, recommend that balanced connection between components is the only way to go. Other companies don’t offer that option at all. Duncan and Darren explain what all the hoopla is regarding single ended versus balanced operation, bringing up some pros and cons for each and shedding light on the whole affair.

From overly complex topologies to bank-breaking component cost to science-backed noise reduction, there are fine arguments on both sides. But there may be other reasons yet for an audiophile to make the choice between one or the other.

Episode 04

Upgrades, product specifications, room problems and system deficiencies can consume the mind of the active audiophile. It can take discipline to let go of all of that and realize the beauty of what you’ve already got. Whether it’s a visit to a friend’s audio system or a friendly compliment to your own stereo, there are ways to adjust our perspectives on this craft and bring us back to what’s most important: enjoying music.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with working on your system, but if you can’t enjoy it, what’s the point? In the second part of this podcast, Darren and Duncan explain the other side of the equation: how to identify sonic problems in what you’re hearing.

Episode 05

In a tough hobby full of myriad choices and sometimes wanton expense, there are a range of things to think about adjusting based on what’s already there. Instead of suggesting new speakers or recommending component matching for synergy, the guys are looking at five ways a good system can be improved as it stands already.

Specific approaches and ear-approved moves are mentioned which have made serious differences for Darren and Duncan in their systems, and while you may think this is a topic that has been covered in detail before, it’s highly possible some new ideas might be lurking in their audiophile-friendly list. Make sure and listen through to the end, where, after the most important item is broken down, the guys take a few minutes to talk about this week’s album recommendation, which is a really delightful listen.

Episodes 06-10

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