- ProductsWhat about Grounding
I received the
CineMag 1131 (Blue) SUT yesterday and put it in
place when I got home. I put a record on and had a very similar
another user's experience reported on your web site. At
mid-range was thin but detailed, the bass indistinct and the high end
suppressed. It remained that way for two albums and then started
up. After approximately 10 LPs, the SUT had started to settle in and
results were amazing. Bass was now deep, articulate, fast with a
information. Mid-range was palpable, saxes were incredible with
breathing nuance and tonal reproduction spot on. Orchestras were
unbelievable with distinction among instruments readily apparent yet
was presented as it should, a seamless orchestra playing as one. High
shimmering, distinct and accurate. My wife simply said it all: "wow!"
In addition, macro and micro dynamics rendered the reproduction much more lifelike and clearly allowed playing technique and rhythm to come through. Imaging is deeper and wider with a blacker background and more exact placement of instruments within the sound stage. It continued to improve through the night so I expect even better results than I received last night during about 3.5 hours of listening.
If you need a testimonial, let me
know. In the meantime
I'll spread the gospel of Bob's!
If you need a testimonial, let me know. In the meantime I'll spread the gospel of Bob's!
I have some feedback, first off I have not been able to use it with the Eros phono since I have a bad tube and am currently getting it replaced. I then hooked it up to my Ayre phono pre amp according to your recommendations. I really thought the Ayre was exceptionally good and that it could not be made much better. I thought maybe there would be an incremental improvement, this was not the case. I actually cannot believe the improvement. I am amazed. Everything is better bass, high frequency extension, low level detail, air, blackness, sound stage both width and depth, especially noticeable are the improvement in transients and overhang. It has improved the sound of my whole system. I have a pretty decent digital front end, Akurate DS, and it was fairly close in sound to my analog. Not anymore, it almost makes my digital sound broken. If I had an idea on how much the improvement would have been I would not have bought the Eros, however if it was not for the Eros I would have never bought the SUT.
This was the most significant improvement I have noticed in my system.
Thanks, even though it was pricey I am glad I went with the 1131.
You may recall that I purchased this combination, along with two new interconnects that you were kind enough to construct, about two months ago. I am using the cartridge and SUT with a 27-year-old Conrad PV-5 pre-amp and C-J Premier Four amplifier, both all tube. The PV-5 has a phono stage but with insufficient heft for the MC. The turntable is the Rega 25 with the RB 600 arm. I have incorporated the Riggle VTAF modification. Your Cinemag 1131 is only perfect both for the Zu-Denon and for the pre-amp. I connected a simple ground wire from the transformer to the ground on the pre-amp and have ZERO hum with the ground switch in the “lift” position. The transformer switch is in the ‘low’ position. The Denon demands some attention to VTA, but once dialed in (takes less than a minute) is incredible.
To summarize, this a fan letter! My vinyl collection contains musical information heretofore unheard by me. The detail is astounding without a hint of analytical fatigue. Bass is tight and “right.” The midrange is sublime with ‘cellos, voices, oboes, etc. sounding as they should with much air for the instruments and “chest” for the singers. I have been fooling around with stereo for 50 years, and this is the best bang for the buck ever.
My system is finally all set, and your CineMag sounds amazing with my Dynavector Xl1
This is definitely my last step up. I'm not shopping for a step up anymore.
And thanks again for your generosity,'
Enjoy the music.
Got in late last night. The first thing I did was warm up the system; I did not change anything. I put on Shelby Lynn's "Just a little lovin'" just to tune my ears (in the current setup) to a well miked female voice. Then I put your transformer in line and switch the MM 47k input and played the album again. Unbelievable!! You are not getting this SUT back, even if you beg me. After the Shelby Lynn, I had to play the original Dusty in Memphis and that is not as well miked, and a bit over produced, but the music!! And that is what this is all about: the music and your transformer has brought me much closer to the music. Leaving again tomorrow morning, but in the mean time I am going though LP and LP and hearing them like I have never heard them before.
transformer arrived last
Wednesday but had no time to
unpack it and listen till yesterday, Saturday. First impressions were
The transformer arrived last Wednesday but had no time to unpack it and listen till yesterday, Saturday. First impressions were that it lookedgreat: very well designed and built. Normally by now I would have opened it up to check out your soldering and layout, but frankly I haven't felt the need - it sounds so nice I've just been listening to music.
output on 20x results in a
fairly close level match
with my CD player, which is very convenient. The sound is open and airy
mid-range with apparently no loss at the frequency extremes. Indeed on
I am hearing a somewhat fuller bass (a bit looser and not always
I don't think I can attribute this to the transformer itself. I get the
impression it is pretty transparent and I'm listening more to the
and, in the case of the slight bass bloom, the arm/cartridge
to the Cine-Mags (I suspect a mismatch bewteen my Dynavector DV17-3 mc
lightweight SME series III).
The output on 20x results in a fairly close level match with my CD player, which is very convenient. The sound is open and airy in the mid-range with apparently no loss at the frequency extremes. Indeed on some LPs I am hearing a somewhat fuller bass (a bit looser and not always accurate), but I don't think I can attribute this to the transformer itself. I get the impression it is pretty transparent and I'm listening more to the cartridge and, in the case of the slight bass bloom, the arm/cartridge interaction than to the Cine-Mags (I suspect a mismatch bewteen my Dynavector DV17-3 mc and the lightweight SME series III).
of this slight
'bloom' I find I am listening
more to the music than before. With a Graham Slee Elevator feeding the
Bottlehead I was often on edge because of RF breakthrough and a general
sheen. The Cine-Mags restore
airy sound of the Bottlehead and just don't seem to get in the way. As
bonus your design is exceptionally quiet. With 'ground' connected I can
no hum arising from the Cine-Mags at all - all I am hearing is some low
from the Amperex tubes in my Bottlehead Seduction.
Irrespective of this slight 'bloom' I find I am listening more to the music than before. With a Graham Slee Elevator feeding the Bottlehead I was often on edge because of RF breakthrough and a general 'hi-fi' sheen. The Cine-Mags restore the open, airy sound of the Bottlehead and just don't seem to get in the way. As a great bonus your design is exceptionally quiet. With 'ground' connected I can detect no hum arising from the Cine-Mags at all - all I am hearing is some low noise from the Amperex tubes in my Bottlehead Seduction.
in all, this is an excellent
audio bargain, a
'keeper' as they say (even with #42 VAT added by UK Customs). Out of
at some point I will compare the Cine-Mags to an expensive Audio Note
Stevens and Billington design ($2000+), and I will be getting a better
soon, but for now I just intend to forget about the phono-amp side and
to the music.
All in all, this is an excellent audio bargain, a 'keeper' as they say (even with #42 VAT added by UK Customs). Out of curiosity at some point I will compare the Cine-Mags to an expensive Audio Note or Stevens and Billington design ($2000+), and I will be getting a better arm soon, but for now I just intend to forget about the phono-amp side and listen to the music.
"Good morning Bob,
I had recieved the "device" on friday as per.when I opened the box and removed the unit I thought boy o boy what a cuuute little sut!!! I am also delighted with the configuration as it will allow me to shorten the tonearm cable and set this cuuute unit next to the 'table. most impartantly, apon checking out this cuuuute unit I found the irritating upper mid/ low terble raspiness was replaced with a large smooth coherant soundstage with good transient attack and good tight and deep bass! I am going to have this "device" have a shoot-out aganst an EAR MC-4 and will let you know what happens (if you don't already) !"
" ...............................I had time last night to check the performace of the mc-4 vs the tiny cinemag and the difference was dramatically in favor of the cinemag!!!! frankly I was going to use the less expensive cinemag sut untill I could afford something like the ear but now that theory is out. this supports that sometimes various equipment can complement each other but may not be giving the best performance.the 'other system' had an origin 'table and arm and a PRE_AMP and my front end is a TERES 'table PHANTOM arm and no and I mean NO PRE-AMP! instead I use a TRANSFORMER attenuator and my phono stage is D.C. fed and is the whole system is performing MUCH better than the OTHER system! I was not as aware of this discrepancy when I went to my friends house all seemed to work okay and we would just enjoy a session of spinning vinyl. now all of that is changed and my buddy is going to have to do some serious changes to his system!! anyway I am NOT going to seek a different sut at this time and the only way I'll change is if I can make a direct comparison. ...................Tom"
impressions were that it looked
great: very well designed and built....it sounds so nice I've just been
listening to music....The output on 30x results in a fairly close level
match with my CD player, which is very convenient.... The sound is open
and airy in the mid-range with apparently no loss at the frequency
extremes.... The Cine-Mags restore the open, airy sound of the
Bottlehead and just don't seem to get in the way. As a great bonus your
design is exceptionally quiet. With 'ground' connected I can detect no
hum arising from the Cine-Mags at all - all I am hearing is some low
noise from the Amperex tubes in my Bottlehead Seduction....All in all,
this is an excellent audio bargain, a 'keeper' as they say....for now I
just intend to forget about the phono-amp side and listen to the music."
Bob: I received the Cinemag on Monday, and I had a nearby dealer manufacture a wire that we discussed on this thread for me. I hooked the Cinemag to the MM stage of my Art Audio Reference. All I can say is that the SPU no longer sounds cardboard like flat. It has a lot more midrange "bloom" and much better bass response. The cartridge is not meant to have real sparkly highs, which with my system would tear my head off. I believe that if one of the major companies manufactured this device, they would have put it in a much fancier package and charged 2 to 3 times more for it. I now firmly believe that if someone was looking to get a phono stage, a strictly MM one and a transformer like yours, which works with a large variety of carts, would be the way to go.
i just tried this little thing..and it sound
amazing!!!! I think about all the people that are saying since
dl 103 ha too much highs..they never tried s proper SUP!!!
……….Just a further up-date. The SUT with the Denon 103R Uwe panzerholz wood body is down- right magnificent. If don’t have an Uwe wood body for your denon you should get one. The SUT is ‘fed’ into a Nagra PL P (internal transformers by-passed) and signals taken from the Tape Out. Alternatively thru’ an EAR324 via the mc/mm input. I think supporting it with 3 Stillpoint cones (without risers) enhances the performance even further.
I want to
compliment you as I think
your research has paid off. I am now getting a better sound with a less
expensive phono stage and after changing my wall outlet to a
treated outlet, and using your SUT, the sound is drawing me back to
records more, which in my mind reflects the quality of success of your
design, and for this I am very grateful ! My stereo system now sounds
fantastic. I am sharing this good news with all of my local audio
Hello Bob:I have been using your Sowter SUT for about a month now and I think it is great. Not only does it look beautiful with its glossy black finish, they sound great too, working special magic on the midrange, and lifting my SPU to an undeniably higher level.
So…it’s been about 3 months. Was waiting for the Cinemags and the Cardas cables to settle into my head. I really couldn’t believe what I heard at first, but I still hear it. I am using an old Adcom preamp as my phono amp. Using its MC input alone I could hear the vinyl sound, but the sound wasn’t breathing or 3-D, mostly I didn’t get that sense of sound launching from darkness. Inserting the Cinemags with Cardas cables, switching to the MM input changed all that and immediately made the sound more appealing than SACD, even with the things it does right. Wow.
Bob, just wanted you to know I'm thrilled with the SUT I purchased from you.
Beautiful build quality. Transparent gain, and the dynamics and detail I'm hearing now from my Cartridges now will have me listening to my whole album collection!
Hi Bob, I
just wanted you to know
that I am very happy with the Sowter SUT i got last week. I have to say
can't hear any down side. Everything is better. Recordings I have heard
million times like Glen Gould's Goldberg Variations just sounds more
and more involving. The soundstaging is spectacular. But the bottom
everything is more musical. I wish I had done this sooner. I think
whole bunch of people who are listening to moving coils that are not
what they paid for. Bob, brilliant job! Tom Martin
Just to let you know that my Cine-Mag with the balanced XLR option arrived last Friday and after a couple of days listening I'd like to tell you that I'm delighted with it.
build quality and sound to match, as for the service well it doesn't
better, two weeks from order to delivery for a custom build sent from
US to the UK is simply amazing, thank you so much.
Eureka! you-we nailed it! My god...this is audioheaven on earth...!
I´d just put Kari Bremnäs "Over en by" (Norwegian artist, very good sound) Lp. From the first note it´s just terrific,very natural,better bas, wellresolved, wellbalanced. My analog sound is now in the way I have always whished it to be..I feel very relaxed in front of my hi-fi rig. If you ever hear about this combination Windfeld-Leben again you can recommend the Altec 4722 as a perfect mctrafomatch. .........................................
4722 was a perfect recommendation, to
get the best possible sound out of my
Ortofon Windfeld, which sound is very correct-high resolution, and
little injection of "body and soul" from California made 1950th
transformers! Göran Lundmark, Sweden.
A quick note to say that I've received the SUT today - UK customs
on to it for around five days including the weekend. By the time
arrived I was really chafing at the bit and had all the wiring ready
waiting to hook it into the system. I've been using the Denon
Trichord Dino+ in the interim and have been pretty well pleased
but having played one side of one record with the CineMags in place I
what all the fuss is about - having Carly Simon in the same room
is a long
held fantasy of mine but i guess I got as close as I ever will this
afternoon. Will send you a more considered opinion when I've spun
more albums but I doubt it gets any better than that.
Bob,I hope you are doing well, I have only been able to get around 7 hours on the SUT and I can tell you that it's absolutely marvelous. I am now hearing my LPs like never before, incredible timbre, clarity, 3D imaging, holographic soundstage, warmth, richness and wonderful deep bass. The music flows with a sense of ease without strain and the volume is louder to boot, I love it! One more thing, the background is ABSOLUTELY quiet, music appears of total blackness!
I definitely won't be returning this unit!
Another Happy Customer
Here is the Long version.................