Night and day differences - the real truth

After getting a good quality Hi-Fi system (not necessarily spending a fortune), things can be better and more nuanced. Night and day differences? Maybe not objectively.

However my personal “wow” moments have been:

  • Testing the Totem Sttaf speakers: I’ve never listened to any Totem speaker before, I was blown away by the soundstage and their crystal clear highs. I knew I had to buy Totem speakers sooner or later. At that time I had the B&W 600 series.

  • Comparing the Exposure 3010DS2 and Naim Nait XS2 to replace an old NAD amp from the 90s: they were simply on another level.

  • Trying Nordost cables for the first time: before that all cables seemed to have minor differences, Nordost just changed my expectations about cables.

  • Testing a proper Hi-Fi rack from Quadraspire for the first time: I was shocked at the impact it had on bass and soundstage, I thought it wasn’t possible before that.

  • Testing the ND5 XS 2: the level of depth and refinement was jaw dropping, at the time I had an Audio Analogue Vivace.

  • Installing both dedicated mains/earthing and acoustic panels with a proper setup: I’ve never heard my system sounding so good, I could hear details that were just hidden before. Everything became crisper, punchier and more dynamic.

  • Testing the Octave V70 SE amp with the Focal Kanta K2: this was the first valve amp I’ve tried and, a month before, I tested the NAC202/NAP200/NAPSC/HiCap paired with the Totem Forests. I was shocked at the level of detail, presence and refinement delivered by the Octave. For a similar price, it seemed on another level.