Challenge: Recommend an upgrade for less than $€£100

Herbie’s Audio Lab damping sheets, from $13- 90 depending on options. X-acto knife needed. I use the ‘grungebuster’ material under lots of things, and the dbNeutralizer under my speaker stand spike cones. Getting another db sheet soon to do some more - optical rendu and ps, between speaker and stand (vs blue tac), etc etc. Very cost effective cutting your own vs their pre-made items.

Unplug your freezer if it has one of those eco inverter things that interfere with the 'leccy.
But don’t forget to switch back on or put it on a time switch to turn back on and avoid domestic chaos.

Cost: free or about £500 and a well deserved bash over the head with a rolling pin.

  • Booze
  • RTOM Moongel damper pads (stylus cleaning)
  • Schon alignment template
  • Stylus gauge

A cover for the TV screen.

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Cotton buds… dig the gold out…

It could be that there are less demands on the electrical current at 3.00 p.m

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Planning to have my ear syringed , free of charge.

Will make a helluva difference to my listening experience

:grinning: :grinning: :grinning: :grinning: :grinning:

I’m sure that is the case (at 3 am), and is the current halfway house to a dedicated mains supply. It’s definitely effective, with or without the wine.

Agree with both HH. Especially the BJC Cat6A cables. These will eventually have been a negative cost for me when I finally get around to e-baying my now redundant Audioquest ethernet cables!.. :slightly_smiling_face:

Usually about £7.

Put the bottle top on the left speaker for best result.


CatSnake 6a Ethernet cables between £20 and £70, depending on length.

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find a friendly teenager and get them to send you their favourite playlist - you’ll be amazed at what you might like…


Not if they’re Naim or Thiel.

A measuring microphone such as Mini DSP’s UMIC-1 (Around £100 new, maybe half that secondhand), and a copy of REW (Room Equalisation Wizard) software (free) - used to measure room behaviour and find best speaker and listening positions. When I did that I ended up with a completely different room layout than originally planned, sounding much better than the starting point, and a good awareness of what is happening in the room.

And when done you can even sell the microphone, possibly at negligible net cost if you buy secondhand!

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Free: Tidy listening room and get chores done.

The difference in perceived audio quality when you don’t feel like there are unfinished chores hanging over your head versus when you do is huge.


I use these as well. Excellent isolation for the cost. And I can use their smaller ones on incidental items like the Kef Kube that goes with my Kef R107s.

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The XLO Test and Burn In cd

Kontak, contact cleaner.

Robert Harley’s The Complete Guide to High-End Audio.

All three can be purchased for $100.



The first time I had a dragonfly black dac between my phone and earbuds was a revelation. Under 100 gbp.

Interesting responses so far, although I can’t believe there are not a lot more budget home made improvements people have done. Please keep them coming

Below is a rough count so far, taking into account Likes. No surprise what’s No 1

14 Alcohol
10 Network cable and components
9 Stay away from this forum and stop reading upgrade threads
8 Isolation Pads under equipment
6 Fix your ears (hearing aid battery/clean them out)
4 Speaker positioning
4 Cable/plug cleaner
3 Vinyl first pressings
3 Reconnect all sockets
3 listen at 3am
2 TV cover
2 Free: Tidy listening room and get chores done.
2 Replace plug fuse - eliminated though as >£100
1 Vinyl Project Sweet
1 Remove Speaker Grill
1 Home made cable
1 Remove freezer eco inverter
1 RTOM Moongel damper pads (stylus cleaning)
1 Schon alignment template
1 Stylus gauge
1 Get a friendly teenagers favourite playlist
1 A measuring microphone
1 dragonfly black dac between my phone and earbud