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How to upgrade your Hi-Fi system for free (or almost)

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It is not always necessary to put your hand to your wallet to improve the performance of your Hi-Fi system. Sometimes, in fact, just having good, even if not excellent, electronics, it is possible to make them express a remarkable performance. How? By limiting oneself to a few precautions or by making precious, but not expensive, daily practices become routine. We invite you to follow the advice we'll give by rehearsing with a record that you know for sure has a good recording, but above all is not recorded in a studio. The best recordings are live or direct recordings, giving preference to orchestral music, choirs or even jazz sessions. This is as long as you know the reference tracks well.

Tidy Cables and Hi-Fi

The first precaution we can take for our Hi-Fi system, especially if it is gradually enriched with more components, is to keep the wiring tidy (by means of clamps) and clean. Wiring that, we take for granted, is of a level directly proportional to the system in our possession. Otherwise an even more urgent intervention is to immediately replace the cables, which maybe are still the ones that came with the electronics. We should try, as much as possible, to separate at least power supply and signal, especially if we don't use balanced cables for the latter and/or quality power cables. that offer good shielding. It would also be a good idea to avoid cables Speaker of different lengths, as well as buying cables of the shortest possible length, both to reduce costs and to get better performance. The latter, however, is more of an academic argument, as it is difficult for the human ear to distinguish the difference in sound emitted by cables two meters long instead of three, especially if the quality of the latter is high.

Ban on interference

The second "rule" is not to place (other) interference where it is not needed. Especially nowadays, when smartphones and tablets, sometimes, come to be part of the system itself, it is good to avoid that there is a mobile phone charger constantly connected together with the other power cables of the system. Better to connect it to separate sockets and or multi-sockets, if we really need to recharge our device.

The position of the speakers in the Hi-Fi system

The third measure we can take, perhaps the most important to improve your Hi-Fi system, is to position the speakers correctly - given that we all have our own personal tastes and preferences. We'll go into this in a separate article. For now, let's just imagine a hypothetical equilateral triangle where the points are formed by the two speakers and the listener's head (not the sofa!). The height from the floor of the mid-high drivers should also be taken into account, as it determines the height of the soundstage. Other tricks are to remove reflective surfaces between you and the speakers (just use a blanket) and not to place the Hi-Fi cabinet between the speakers, but to the side.

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Jumpers are essential to improve sound performance

A fourth measure is related to bi-wiring jumpers. This kind of connection is useless in products that are not Hi-End, so in most systems opting for jumpers is the best choice. A 100 euro cable is better than two 50 euro cables. But investing your budget in good speakers and cables and then running the signal through a piece of brass used as a jumper will not help the final performance. In case the speakers are fitted with dual plugs, one of the first things to do is to replace the brass jumpers with a piece of wire equal to or better than the one you used between the amplifier and the speakers.

The management of the electronics of the Hi-Fi system

Number five: level (i.e., level) and separate the electronics. Regarding the first action, it is a speech that concerns above all the analog sources, but it can be extended also to the digital ones. This article was born to highlight all those shrewdnesses that, with zero budget, can refine what we listen to. And a measure of this kind does not cost anything. More or less the same applies to the separation of electronics. An amplifier vibrates because of its transformer, just as a CD player vibrates because of its transport or a turntable because of its motor. Separating each individual component reduces the disturbance that each of these vibrations brings to the other electronics.

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The polarity of schuko sockets

Last but not least advice is to pay attention to the polarity schuko sockets. The polarity, however, is almost always not indicated, even if we are talking about products conceived for Hi-Fi. The phase search is to be done by ear, then, or by using a phase finder. There are also very cheap ones. Invert the plug of the source and check if there is a change to see if this last suggestion to improve the system can bring some benefits.

Well, these are six small steps towards improving your Hi-Fi system. But certainly it is impossible to exhaust in one article all the cases that can be presented in the audiophile field. Just think of all the variables that can be obtained by crossing different electronics, rooms and cables. For this reason, do not hesitate to contact us for a personalized support by clicking the button below. Chat on the site, phone, Facebook or a visit to the office... you choose the means you prefer!

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