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Have I leapt before I looked?

 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 1
Registered: Aug-04
Hi all. After reading ALOT of your excellent postings, I wandered out yesterday and purchased 3 components: a Cambridge Audio 540D, 540R and their amplifier 640A.

From everyone's postings, I know these components work...and work well. However, I wonder if I haven't inadvertantly purchased an amplifier I don't need AND I wonder if it's a wise decision considering I'm moving back to Australia in four weeks.

My questions, if you'd be so kind to offer an opinion, are:

1. Should I have waited 'til I was back in Oz? After all, I'm already going to have issues regarding the power leads *although* I did save at least £200 by buying from Richer Sounds. Should I bother going with the 3 year warranty, after all?

2. Do I need that Cambridge Audio 640A Amp after all? I wish to be able to listen to CD's and also put my toes into the water for DVD-A's, too. On top of that, I'd like to be able to use the system for Home Theatre. Is what I've chosen a decent set-up? I know that the 540R already comes with an onboard Amp; was it slightly misguided to buy the 640A as well?

3. I have *NO* idea how to set this thing up. Can anyone suggest any good sites to check out / places in Sydney that might be able to help?

4. Lastly, in regards to question 1, I'm well aware that I haven't tested the equipment...and are unlikely to be able to do so before they get packed (next week or the week after, hopefully). Should I get Richer Sounds - or someone else - to test them out for me?

I realise this is a lot of questions (and some may say, "hey, more money than sense"), but I'd really appreciate anyone's input. I may be only a noob (computer geek speak for an amateur), but I'm trying to learn. Most of all, I'd like to be able to listen to some *real* music for once, rather than the recycled stuff ou of my PC's speakers.

Many thanks in advance!

Captain Cod.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 1997
Registered: Dec-03
Repeat of reply to identical post under "amplifiers":-

Captain Cod,

1. Both Aus and UK are 240 V, 50 Hz mains supply. So, no worries. Except you will either need to change the plug, or buy a cheap adapter.

2. No, the Cambridge Audio 540R does stereo, too, and very well, so I am told. Can't you take the amp back? What were you thinking of....?

3. Read the instructions. Honestly, it is all there.

4. It makes sense to test it, obviously. There has been a report on this forum of one of those models (I forget) needing to be returned for a firmware update or similar. Run "search" with the player and receiver model numbers.

5. Tannoy is a great make. Ditto KEF, B&W. But there are many good makes of speakers, and it depends on what you want the system to do.

Hope that helps.
 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 5
Registered: Aug-04
Thanks for your time, John. You've helped clarify matters. A couple of brief answers to questions raised are:

2. What was I thinking of? God knows :-) I got sold the story that I needed a second, dedicated amp to drive Tannoy Eyris 2's. And I swallowed it.

3. Fair enough. I figured it was going to be ALOT harder than it actually is. After thumbing through the manuals, errr, it's really quite easy (looks sheepish).

4. Will do. Thanks.

5. Thanks again. I think the Tannoys are definitely on the list there somewhere. Originally, I just wondered if the setup I bought would have enough power to drive a decent set of speakers with any clarity. Thanks for the tip.

And that's it. Thanks very much for your help - I look forward to coming back after I've set it up and exchanging more foolhardy comments. ;)

Peter.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2008
Registered: Dec-03
You are welcome, Peter. I am an Oz-ophile. Check out posts here by "My Rantz". Mind, he is in Queensland...

The other thing that occured to me is that you will fall foul of this DVD-V "regionalization" scandal, if you are not careful. UK is in region 2. Discs you buy or rent in other regions (US is 1; I forget which Aus is; MR will know) will not play. Go back to the shop where you bought the Cambridge Audio 540D and tell them you need it to be "region-free". It is easily done, just by programming with the remote, probably, either in UK or Aus, but the "hack" is a closely-guarded secret, and specific for each type of player.
 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 6
Registered: Aug-04
A Queenslander, eh? Must be salt of the earth. :-)

As far as I'm aware the hack is actually posted on a sticker *on* the actual pack (the DVD player is at a friend's awaiting collection), so that's covered.

Of more interest is *not* needing the CA 640A Amplifier. I have to defer to your superior knowledge of audio here, but I'm interested to know *why* Richer Sounds were so keen to sell me the CA 640A if the output from the CA 540R is perfectly adequate as you stated.

John, could I be most forward and borrow your knowledge once more? Are you *sure* that I'll be able to get a nice output from a "mere" CA 540R? I'm interested in playing CD's, watching movies, and of course, trying out DVD-A's. Hopefully matched with either a set of Tannoy Mercury M4's, a set of Tannoy Eyris 2's or Tannoy Sensys-DC2's. I'd be most interested in hearing your cases against keeping the CA 640A (and, my choice of components)!

Thanks mate, and all the best.

Peter.
 

Silver Member
Username: Myrantz

Post Number: 528
Registered: Aug-04
Cap' Cod,

I agree with all John A says. I'd get a refund on the amp and I'd ask the dealer why he talked you into it in the first place. I'd also check that your warranty is valid in Aus (not from the dealer but from the manufacturer). The Aus DVD region #is 4.

Do a search here for the 540R as it had some software issues that CA was addressing. Be sure your unit has had the upgraded software.

Good Luck
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2011
Registered: Dec-03
Peter/Captain Cod,

I do not know, and cannot compare, the CA 640A and the CA 540R. Probably someone could argue the former does stereo better than the latter. But, even if this is correct, I do not think it would be so much better that the money would not be better spent on speakers or similar.

"but I'm interested to know *why* Richer Sounds were so keen to sell me the CA 640A if the output from the CA 540R is perfectly adequate" ...could it be because you were so keen to buy it...?

Take it easy. It is all good gear you have there.

MR is right about the warranty and software upgrade.

Let us know how you get on.

All the best.
 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 7
Registered: Aug-04
Hi all again. Thanks for your posts - nothing's more 'interesting' than stepping into unknown waters...then having someone say "hey, no, go *that way". So, cheers. :-)

Yes, I was keen to buy them. Very much so. Without digressing enormously, I've spent a considerable period of my youth overseas, and know that I've actually *got* some cash, it'd be nice to settle back home and be able to listen to some decent music rather than resort to a shoddy alternative. I've spent a long time thinking "y'know, I'd really like a decent hifi / home theatre". That's when I first started reading these forums. A foolhardy act because it whet my appetite beyond belief...probably the reason for my lack of buying sense.

I'll head back into Richer Sounds tomorrow and see what they say. It's a good point, using the extra cash form the CA 640A on a better pair of speakers, which leads me to one last question:

Do home theatre setups sound any less "true" / "better" than a strict two-speaker set-up?

This may well sound as obvious as hell to you all, but please excuse my ignorance. I can see murky waters ahead yet again and any signposts would be fantastic.

Enjoy and thanks again,

Peter
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2012
Registered: Dec-03
I get the picture, Peter. I am sure you are not alone.

"Do home theatre setups sound any less "true" / "better" than a strict two-speaker set-up?"

No, not necessarily. Of course, if you spend the same amount of money on a 2.0 system and a 5.1 system (even leaving out the TV) then the 2.0 components are likely to be better; there are fewer of them.

I would built a home theatre system around a stereo system, with an AV receiver that also works as a good stereo integrated amp, and main speakers that do just as well as any hifi speakers.

Also, the DVD player you have is a good CD player. But they might equally have told you "you need a separate CD player" and made another sale on that basis.

If it were me, I would be reading the conditions of sale in the small print, and would take the boxed amp back to the shop, with the request/demand at least that they swap it for speakers. Really, they knowingly sold you something you did not need, and money back would be justified. It is not a good recommendation of Richer Sounds. I plug BADA dealers here only because they have one web page. www.bada.co.uk I am pretty sure no such dealer would have done that to you. If you have time go and talk to one. They provide good advice and service at all levels. Richer Sounds sounds like more of a hard-sell operation. Though they do carry some good stuff, and that is what you have got, so all is not lost. By the way, Richer Sounds is essentially the owner of CA. See www.audiopartnership.com
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2014
Registered: Dec-03
Peter,

I don't know if it helps to get a feel for things, but there are some recent pictures of a few regulars' surround set-ups on Discoveries. Plus pets, lounge interiors etc....

Also a lot of chat around hi-res discs and music. Ignore the repulsive fat guy with the ear-ring in the middle of the latest thread; it is some sort of joke from our good friend, Kegger. There are nice pin-ups in the archived sections.
 

Silver Member
Username: Sem

New York USA

Post Number: 217
Registered: Mar-04
Joke?!?!??!? I thought that WAS Kegger!!!!
 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 8
Registered: Aug-04
Update

Well, I went back to Richer Sounds at Farringdon rather than Holborn in London. I figured that I'd much rather deal with the larger store than tackle the issue in a place where there's more activity than a lightning-struck ant hill.

(Marvellous?) "Marvin" was more than fair about the whole issue and took the CA 640A back without a murmur. Funny thing, customer service, especially here in the UK. Without sounding, well, too "anti-UK store-ish" (if you can follow that), the customer service in London is usually some of the worst I've experienced. Having lived in four countries, I'm not making this up, either. Thankfully though, Richer Sounds appears falls outside this category; I can imagine most *other* sales staff would have been pretty surly about the whole 'returns' issue. They, however, didn't bat an eyelid.

Anyway, they took the amp and *I* took the DVD-A and A/V (Cambridge Audio 540D and 540R), and also took out the extended warranties on them, too. Opened them up here at home and tested the basic electronics - they're fine. If I have any further issues than that, I'm in deep trouble...for this stuff is about to be packed up for four months and shipped back to the The Great Brown Land. Nevermind, the 3 year warranties will take care of any problems...hopefully.

As for knowing if the 540D is the latest model, John-A, they didn't know; they advised me to ring up the Head Office with the serial number and check. So, I'll do that.

Anyway, I've appreciated ALL of your comments, particularly from you, John-A. Cheers! If you ever make it down Ostraylia way, post me a note and I'll make sure you get the full Aussie hospitality (i.e. a damned good barbie and a few cold beers).

Lastly, err, I'm not too sure if that photo I saw from one of John's links was one of this forum's posters (Kegger??). Lol. Wow, and I thought I was "big".

So, that's it. I'll let you know how I get on when I'm back on Australian soil. For now, it's a nip out into the back yard with a fine glass of South Australian chardonnay. Slainte!

Peter.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2021
Registered: Dec-03
Great stuff, Peter.

Kudos to Richer Sounds. Sorry I maligned them. It is still a daft name. Your receiver's internal battery (keeping the memory of pre-sets etc.) may just discharge after four months' storage and never charge up again properly, after. It is not big job to replace it, or a heavy price to pay to be going down under.

Good luck. Bon voyage. Come back with your experiences and maybe even a pic or two. No worries. Mate!
 

Silver Member
Username: Myrantz

Post Number: 534
Registered: Aug-04
John A

er mate - that is Kegger!
 

Gold Member
Username: Kegger

MICHIGAN

Post Number: 1272
Registered: Dec-03
hey you guy's talking about my hulkin bod again!

yu know if you need more pic's i can provide!

shheeezz yu do 1 sexxy photo shoot and the whole world thinks yur a whoore!
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2029
Registered: Dec-03
Sem, MR,

Go back to the archived part of that and see Kegger before he discovered beer. If anything, it's even worse.

Kegger,

Who pays the piper calls the tune. With that playful pose, you can't complain if people get the wrong idea! I urge you to go on the Atkins diet, quick. It's Ok, you can still drink beer. I am going to re-post Bond, just as soon as that thread is archived again. (Smiley. Weak one).
 

Gold Member
Username: Kegger

MICHIGAN

Post Number: 1289
Registered: Dec-03
atkins shmatkins!

i'm on the see food diet!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 91
Registered: Jun-04
Newbie question: can I stick to Atkins at lunchtime, but switch to prawns and lobster when taking girlie to dinner?

AL the pragmatic
 

Bronze Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 92
Registered: Jun-04
BTW: a workmate of mine bought Cambridge 640 CD+Amp. He told me CD did not have any "power off" button, and Amp did not have commuted power out. So CD had to be in standby all the time, heating up quite a lot.

Cheers
AL
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

Post Number: 2045
Registered: Dec-03
I thought this was a useful site for folks like Peter

ELECTRIC POWER AROUND THE WORLD
 

New member
Username: Captain_cod

Post Number: 9
Registered: Aug-04
lol - certainly been some activity since I last posted.

Kegger - pal, that's some impressive size you got there. I'm 6'5" and about 260 pounds....and I *still* don't think I'm anywhere near you. :-)

Good link to different power sockets 'round the globe, John A. Being aware of Australia's *own* mini-colonial heritage around the South Pacific, it's useful to see how the terrible "I" plug has spread...virtually every (well, a few anyway) country in the South Pacific has an "I" plug too, it seems. Maybe this is a *real* way to monitor national influence; i.e how many countries share your plug standard...

Anyway, 2 1/2 weeks to go before ol' Blighty is a memory. Got to visit the fiance's relatives in Dublin before we go, as well as "do" a trip to Italy (my grandfather fought in Montecassino; I have to check it out) before Australia beckons.

Strange. Six years here, and the air seems that much clearer, now. What is it about only realising what you miss when it's gone?

Bah, sentimentilist rhetoric. I *won't* miss the 110% humidity on the Jubliee Line on the Underground, anyway... :-)

P.
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