Garage system

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hifiaf
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Garage system

Post by hifiaf »

After growing up near Toronto, then going to grad school here, I spent a few years bouncing around between academic jobs (most recently in San Diego), before finally and very happily ending up back here. I bought my first home here in 2017.

The housing market here in Toronto in crazy, so I am lucky to own any house at all. But suffice it to say that my house is tiny, and does not contain the ideal listening room I've been dreaming of since my teenage years. Indeed, the only suitable room is so tiny that I've pretty much given up on loudspeakers and have been listening almost exclusively on headphones (fairly happily) for the last few years.

The final frontier, though, is my garage. We don't have a car, and though we do want to keep it as a functional garage for visitors, I've been spending the last few months fixing it up as a workshop and music rehearsal space. Now I'm wondering if it might not make a decent spot for a proper loudspeaker system at some point. It's all cinder block (newly painted), 25 x 15 feet, with a peaked roof (insulated but not drywalled). If I did set up speakers, they would probably have to be in front of the garage door, so I'd have to be able to move everything quickly if someone needed to park. Acoustic treatment would probably be necessary for ideal sound, but given the limitations of the space, I'm not sure I'd want to invest in that until we completely give up on using it for parking. We don't currently have heating for the winter, so I'd have to set that up. The most exciting this is that I could really turn the volume up out there, something I've never been able to do for more that a few minutes at a time, having always lived in apartments in old houses with cranky neighbours.

For now, I've got my high school hifi set up out there to keep me entertained while I paint. Here are pics of my Rega Brio and Nait 2 (seated on my LP12 jig) competing against one another into my Mission 701 (or 702?) speakers, which I bought when I was 16 with a paycheque from my job working as a storybook-themed amusement park (I remember speanding my breaks reading What Hi-Fi). The Brio actually sounds a little better to my ears -- maybe because I'm not using NACA5 speaker cable (it's in my other system). The only way to get internet out to the garage was through the power lines, so there is HORRIBLE AC noise coming through on my guitar amps and both the Brio and the Nait 2. So I'll definitely need some sort of isolation unit at some point.

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YNWaN
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Re: Garage system

Post by YNWaN »

That is super minimalist :) - except for two amps anyway. Have you seen how much Nait 2s are worth these days?
Mark

hifiaf
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Re: Garage system

Post by hifiaf »

I have not! Perhaps I should pass it on. I believe I paid about $500 Canadian dollars for it.

Nobeone
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Re: Garage system

Post by Nobeone »

Serviced in good shape an Olive Nait2 is worth up to £500ish so maybe CAD$800?

Nobeone
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Re: Garage system

Post by Nobeone »

If the Brio sounds better the Nait needs a service :lol:

hifiaf
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Re: Garage system

Post by hifiaf »

It sounded better once it had warmed up -- but it surely does need a service -- it's been years. I haven't used the Nait 2 regularly for some time. It will be fun to get it set up out there and reacquaint myself with it.

$800 isn't quite the absurd, over-the-top price I was hoping to hear! So I'll hang on to it and get it serviced.

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YNWaN
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Re: Garage system

Post by YNWaN »

Nobeone wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 10:52 pm
If the Brio sounds better the Nait needs a service :lol:
I agree. You could service it yourself - if you are okay with a soldering iron?
Mark

hifiaf
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Re: Garage system

Post by hifiaf »

I had the same thought while I was out for my run just now :)

I have lots of experience soldering guitar electronics, but have never worked in any hifi gear. The plan for my Paradise is to have Si do the main boards and me do the easy stuff, so I was thinking this might be a slightly less stressful way to get some experience and confidence working inside a hifi box. My Nait also has the CD RCA inputs and I've always wanted to switch that to a phono board. Maybe one of Kit's would fit in the Nait?

What do I need for a service?

The volume pot is also a little scratchy and the taper isn't even. I'm not sure if that's something that some contact cleaner would solve or if it would need to be swapped.

Hooray, another project!

--

And, while on the subject of the Nait 2: what is the classic speaker pairing? Linn Kans?

I once heard a Nait 1 connected to some Quad ESLs -- it sounded amazing! I've always wanted to try electrostatics ever since then...

Nobeone
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Re: Garage system

Post by Nobeone »

The Nait2 with CD input is a hack of a Nait2 with a MM phono input, some components in the phono input stage are removed, the signal linked through, and the RCA connection to the main PCB cut and linked with resistors. Should be possible to work out what is missing and refit though some components are hard to get hold of. Service should be simple enough, replace tants and electrolytic capacitors, job done. I can't be more specific right now as I no longer have my Nait2, but pop the sleeve off and take a photo and if I can find some good photos myself of my old Nait2 with phono inputs we can work out what is missing! No there are no cards in a Nait, one PCB for PSU, pre and power stages, RSL cards will not help you. There are some modifications that are simple enough and bring benefit but probably just a service first. The pot is a bit crappy on a Nait, very little adjustment, but a mod to reduce the gain will help some of that. Perfect partners from the period: Naim IBL, even SBL at today's prices, Linn speakers I suspect (I have very little knowledge about Linn speakers, remember at this time Naim and Linn were in direct competition, the days of working together were long gone, SBL = Sod Bloody Linn!). Royd Minstrels would be my fav. cheap partner speaker of the day, perhaps Rega ELA. As long as you don't want rock concert levels and don't go too inefficient you are fine. Yes ESLs are lovely things. There is a thread on pfm about Nait mods running right now in the diy section, keep an eye on that. Have a look at Martin Clark's acoustica site for Naim mods. There are some things that are easy to improve on without butchering.

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YNWaN
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Re: Garage system

Post by YNWaN »

I was running a Linn/Naim dealership when the Minstrel came out and well remember disliking it intensely. For me it just wasn’t sufficiently dynamically expressive and if you turned the volume up it fell to pieces (sonically). My favourite Royd speaker was the Eden which I really liked and preferred to the Linn Kan.
Mark

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