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I have finally ordered my Quatros and M5 amps.  While they are being built, since I have nothing to do buy study and read, I will occupy my time by preparing the house and room for them.  Maybe I can help add content to the forum too and help someone else.

Job 1.  Minimize HVAC noise

This house has 2 minisplit compressors mounted on the exterior wall of the house.  This is nice to keep leaves and debris out, but when the compressors and fans are running, I can hear NVH in the living room.  They are all direct-coupled to the wall.  To address, I replaced the rock-hard molded bushings that Mitsubishi provided with soft, thick units from McMaster Carr.  I also torqued the nuts properly, unlike the ham-fisted installer did.  I tethered the tops of the units to the house with stainless safety lanyards, in case of a top-over, if that is even possible.  I yanked on them pretty good, and while they move, they are very secure and stable.  This mod reduced the NVH in the house to about 1/4 or less than it was and cost about $50.

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Job 2.  Power and Data

I previously paid an electrician to add a dedicated 20 amp 12/2 line for future audio.  Plans have changed since then, so I re-routed that power to the wall where the Quatros and amps will live.  I also installed floor-mounted boxes from Lew Electric, which are really nice US-made parts.  I installed a duplex outlet for each speaker/amp, and a third one for the rack which also has 2 Cat6 lines, which I re-purposed and moved from over the fireplace.  Couple of notes here.  I initially regretted not having the electrician run 10/2 cable.  But, in the course of working these and installing these outlets, I was pleased I did not.  12/2 is hard to work with!  Especially if like me you insist on wrapping the copper around the screw terminals instead of using the quick terminals.  Also, I thought I was slick and fancy with box covers with removable plug caps (they do look nice) but I discovered when I was done that my Furman 20-amp cable cannot fit through the opening in the cover.  Lew sells flip-up caps, but they don't look much bigger.  Maybe the Vandersteen power cables will fit through, but I am not betting on it.  So I will probably have to run without any covers so the cables fit, which is a little bit of a bummer.  Maybe I can come up with an alternative.  Also.  I used Hubbell outlets, which are quite nice I think for $18 apiece.  I had one Pangea in stock from my previous system, and it's more or less about the same as the Hubbells.

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More mods to come, I will keep updating this thread as I go.  These are the easier ones.

 

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Edited by JonM
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8 hours ago, JonM said:

I have finally ordered my Quatros and M5 amps.  While they are being built, since I have nothing to do buy study and read, I will occupy my time by preparing the house and room for them.  Maybe I can help add content to the forum too and help someone else.

Job 1.  Minimize HVAC noise

…  This mod reduced the NVH in the house to about 1/4 or less than it was and cost about $50.

^Nice!^

The Mrs is a psychologist and I fitted out her last counselling room.

  • A sound proof door and seal.
  • A decoupled wall
  • green glue and double drywall

I regretted not taking insertion loss measurements of “before and after.” (It had to have been 20-30 dB in the ~100 Hz + range.)

Those numbers can really help others needing to take similar approaches.

Do you have the McMaster Carr part numbers Sir?

Edited by Holmz
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McMaster part numbers below, hopefully readable. We have 2 outdoor units, which are 2 different sizes. I used the 50 pound mounts for the small unit, and 60s for the large one. They really worked out great. See other part numbers for washers and nuts too. 
 

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I’m planning on green glue and an additional layer of plywood under the subfloor too. I have nice crawlspace access from below. 

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4 hours ago, GdnrBob said:

Nice work. I agree 10 gauge wire is a bi*ch to work with- and probably overkill.

I wondered what those things were called.

Now, does your room need any treatment?

Bob

I’m guessing the room will need a bunch of work!!  Lots of hard surfaces. We did put in a wool rug just today, and that will help some.  I am planning on doubling the subfloor underneath from below with more plywood and green glue, because access is easy. 
 

Our finished basement flooded last December, and it’s only just recently back together in one piece. Lots of stuff needs to move out and go back to the basement where it belongs!  

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1 hour ago, JonM said:

I’m guessing the room will need a bunch of work!!  Lots of hard surfaces. We did put in a wool rug just today, and that will help some.  I am planning on doubling the subfloor underneath from below with more plywood and green glue, because access is easy. 

The stiffness is usually proportional to R^3 I believe. (Thickness cubed).  So it becomes like an I-beam with the opposed plywood on each side. (A which is a good step up in stiffness.)

Many of the Neutrik connectors can be screwed into the floor and wired from the back. That is better for things like XLRs, but if you have ethernet…
https://www.markertek.com/product/ne8fdx-y6-b/neutrik-ne8fdx-y6-b-d-shape-cat6a-ethercon-panel-connector-shielded-idc-termination-black-housing

A 1” forstner bit is good. Then a small bit for the two screws to hold it to the floor… But this assumes that you might have some streaming digital in the chain, or other needs for Ethernet or XLRs.. etc. They are great when you are not on a concrete slab.

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10 hours ago, JonM said:

Also, I thought I was slick and fancy with box covers with removable plug caps (they do look nice) but I discovered when I was done that my Furman 20-amp cable cannot fit through the opening in the cover.  Lew sells flip-up caps, but they don't look much bigger.  Maybe the Vandersteen power cables will fit through, but I am not betting on it.  So I will probably have to run without any covers so the cables fit, which is a little bit of a bummer.  Maybe I can come up with an alternative.

There is always these: 
https://www.markertek.com/product/nac3mpa/neutrik-nac3mpa-1-powercon-chassis-mount-receptacle-power-in-blue
https://www.markertek.com/product/nac3fcb/neutrik-nac3fcb-powercon-cable-end-power-out-gray

But you would need to ditch the outlets, and then put the ends onto the cable that feed the amps… personally I would do it, but I am not very sure you would gain much, as you already have the outlets in place…  But is seems like worth mentioning just for future ideas.

And then put on some tasty amp ends like the Furutech ones.

Edited by Holmz
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5 hours ago, ctsooner said:

Looks great. Congrats. Can’t wait to hear that u have them set up

Great work Jon ! our Mitsubishi is on a pad on gravel, only the lines and AC tie to the wall. The head unit is 21 db which i can hear easily in 7 room. It gets lost in the noise floor of life….

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@Holmz markertek website is cool. All sorts of cool bits there. Thank you for the reference.  A future job is to bore two 2” diameter holes in the fireplace tile to conduit and snake an XLR minimum length run for the left amp.  Will post how that one goes. 
 

@TomicTime I am happy in general with Mitsubishi mini splits. The builder of this house, who was both a liar and a jackass, did not spec the Hyperheat outdoor units, which was a problem last winter in heavy snow.  They almost stop working when it gets very cold.  I may be able to retrofit coil heaters. Anyway, the indoor units are fine and I like the noise levels. They aren’t like the hush boxes I built for the theater we had in Charleston, but I’m not going for dedicated audio room this time. And, I’ve sort of adopted your philosophy about ‘you live in the room too so don’t fret about treatment perfection’. You said it more eloquently than that of course, but I think that was your intent. And reflected in your present setups. 

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7 hours ago, JonM said:

@Holmz markertek website is cool. All sorts of cool bits there. Thank you for the reference.  A future job is to bore two 2” diameter holes in the fireplace tile to conduit and snake an XLR minimum length run for the left amp.  Will post how that one goes. 

…. 

I agree that it is easier to have a conduit to get the cable through. (A vacuum and piece of string can suck the string through the conduit…)
But it might be easier to have the 1” hole on the room side. And avoid a plate. Assuming that one can get to the back, and do the conduit or up to that location. I like conduit, but if it is in the basement it would not need conduit if one can get to the cable… (but the double layer of subfloor plywood would make that hidden… so you probably need the conduit.)

My order from Markertek was a bunch of this stuff and Magomi mic cable, which was placed a few months ago.

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8 hours ago, JonM said:

A future job is to bore two 2” diameter holes in the fireplace tile

Wow, you are very daring. Drilling through tile isn't for the faint of heart as a small misstep may become an eyesore. 

God knows how many times I mucked up a 'simple job'...😪

Bob

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I had 1 box of leftover putty pads from the last theater I built so I went ahead and used them on the 3 new junction boxes. They probably won’t make much difference masking the sound of the sump pump in the crawlspace under the living room, but they certainly won’t hurt, either. 

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Job 3.  Cut hole in fireplace tile for left channel XLR cable. 
 

My original plan was to buy a pair of 6m XLR cables to run to the M5 amps via the crawlspace below. This was expensive. And complicated. My wife actually suggested “why don’t you just go through the fireplace?”  This cut the run down to 3m. 
 

I made the cuts today and all worked without any drama. I used a $35 Chinese diamond hole saw from Amazon and it worked fine.  
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The question now is, and I’d appreciate input here from the group, should I (a) proceed as planned and install a 1.5 inch diameter black DWV ABS pipe between the holes as a conduit OR (b) should I just fish the cable through”naked”?  I could buy and use black plastic desk cable grommets on the cut tile and it would probably look nice. The interior  of the box is not clean by any means and when I look inside I can see the insulation in the exterior wall.  I’m not crazy about dragging an Audioquest Wind cable through there!! I guess I could protect the jacket with blue tape?  Or lightly wrap it in butcher paper?  
 

The ABS pipe makes for a nice clean install and I don’t think it would effect the EME around the cable.

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If it is a few feet between holes then I would use a pipe as one has guidance for the cable. If it is a single one, then just fish it through.
 
In reality I would have bought the mogami mic cable, and the Neutrik ends, and put in small holes and soldered the end post facto.
And I would have used the mogami in brown to hide it on the floor.

I have a 90 degree end for the drill, which gets within ~1” for a corner (or less). 
I think Milwaukie has similar in the US (??).
The 90 is in the image.
met600157580_2.jpg

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6 hours ago, Steve Edwards said:

One of the many things I've learned from this awesome forum is that most (if not all) its members know more about all things audio, (electronics & construction) than I do.  But, what I do know is that I appreciate and enjoy it so much, my life would not be the same without it.  

Play on

I know mechanical things well.  Electrical, not so much.  In this "episode" of my life in audio I am actually trying to make this more about the music than the equipment.  I could have went out and test drove a half dozen speakers and a half dozen amps, instead I am trying to buy really well-made stuff, made in America by craftspeople, and trust my peers for recommendations.  That's what led me to M5s and Quatros.  I built a home theater in the last house and it was just too freakin complicated.  I spent more time working on it than using it.

Music before equipment is not easy to do, but that is the dream/plan anyway!

29 minutes ago, GdnrBob said:

 

@JonM,

Are the wires going from one end of the fireplace to the other? If so, then installing the pipe would probably make the most sense.

B

Yes, they are.  I think a smooth plastic pipe will be handy. 

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3 hours ago, GdnrBob said:

@Holmz,

That Metabo looks nice. I ended up with a Festool. Though expensive, they really are well built.

I actual have the Mafell A10, but I did not want to show off.
It is all rainbows and unicorns with the 10.8V drill.
🌈+🦄 (But they are also on the “non-cheap” end of the  isle.)

I mostly use corded tools, but the Mrs has used the little drill with Allen bits to put together IKEA.
I knew it was worth the price as I watched from the sofa… 😎

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