Showing posts from December, 2013

My Setup 12 / 2013

Update: I have upgraded my system in 2015:
My 2015 setup

PS64D8000FM Samsung plasma TV

Denon AVR 4520 – XT 32, 11.2 capable with nine amps inbuilt, twin sub out Marantz PM 11S3 : 2 channel stereo amp with HTbypass and 100W per channel driving the front pair of 804D ( Oppo BR player BDP 105 as CD transport and HT source
Oppo BDP 83  Nuforce BR player (
Marantz NA11S1 as a DAC and network player Apple TV (Gen 1) X 2 for music and photos HTM4s centre, Radius 90HD for height and wide channels Usher 520 for rear back Monitor Audio RXFX in dipole mode for side surrounds JL Audio F113 for low bass Hsu MBM for mid bass (tuned to 50-120 Hz) - sited behind my main seat QED XT 300 for front and centre speakers QED Micro speaker cable for the rest Audioquest Cinnamon HDMI for Oppo to amp Aiborg flat HDMI cable, LHS and AQ Forest HDMI cable - amp to TV and other sou…

How to make bright sounding speakers sound more warm


Sometimes too much detail can be a bad thing, or perhaps you like the details your speakers can produce, but also find it a tad too hot in the treble.
I found that my speakers were almost perfect for home theatre, but the treble sizzled a bit too much for my liking. So short of changing them, what can we do?
Let’s start from the free maneuvers to the ones which cost…
Speaker Position
Toeing in helps gives focus, and tightens the soundstage. But having the speakers point at your ears with makes the sound hotter. If your ears at the level of the tweeters, it also makes it hotter.
So fire them straight down the room, and sit a little above or even below the tweeter level.
Speaker Grilles
Keeping the grilles on also helps tame the treble a bit.
In certain speakers, not all the inputs are the same. For example, in the B&W 800 series, by using the lower inputs, you get less treble energy.
Reflective surfaces
Walls, glass, marble or hard floors are reflective and give the ton…

Marantz NA 11 S1 review

Marantz has been the everyday man’s route to accessible hifi at a decent price for a while. With their equipment, you pay more than what you would at Costco or Harvey Norman, but you are far short of the stratospheric money that you would have to fork out for more esoteric gear, and yet you get a big proportion of the sound quality.
A lot of this has to do with Mr Ken Ishiwata, the music genius who sprinkles his special magic on most of their range, and you get some rather fine equipment over the past 60 years.
Here in their 60th Year, the Reference “11” series has a new member in the form of the Audiophile Network player / DAC – NA 11 S1. That’s a mouthful but your jaw will remain open when you sit down to listen to what this baby can do.

Some links to the technical blurb:

And some tips from Marantz about using digital music and their USB port:
And the info brochure:…

42: Movie Review


Sports movies are usually a sure bet. You get action, drama, sometimes romance thrown in too, and a few rousing moments that allow you to leave the cinema with chests swollen, a feel good factor and a certain albeit temporary urge to take up the sport featured in the movie that one was just watching.. 42 is about Jackie Robinson, the first Black player in the US professional Baseball league. It’s sheer arrogance to call a league the World Series when only one or two nations are playing, but that’s the Americans for you… But this is a touch above the rest, thanks to a fine cast, who avoid overacting, whilst giving a realistic portrayal of the hardships and obstacles faced to be the first Black pro baseball player. You cannot help but root for him, and at the end, you will be up on your feet cheering him on.
Plot: 4/5 Action and surround: the baseball arena is a fine place to showcase the surround effects and bass that will keep the home theatre fans happy. 3.5/5 Check factor: …

Two Guns: Movie Review


After I watched this, I had a lot of mixed feelings… the kind you get when you just witnessed something that could have been so much better… not that it was rubbish, but with some tighter story editing and a better plot, you could have had a movie that Quentin Tarantino could have been proud of. I guess that summarizes it for you about how I feel about this show. Denzel Washington and Mark Wharlberg play two uncover agents from different agencies who end up robbing a bank and being double-crossed by their respective agencies. They come together to outwit their foes reluctantly and survive all the attempts on their lives. This could have been a movie which combines the best of the buddy cop movies with the kind of tension from Training Day, another Denzel Washington movie which was far more successful. Instead it doesn’t know if it wishes to do worse than Street Kings, and it doesn’t have the slick coolness of Three Kings, another more successful robbery caper.
However it i…

Soul Of Bread (愛的麵包魂) - movie review

It's been a while since I have written, so much has happened this year..

Let's start with a light hearted one:

Soul Of Bread (愛的麵包魂)

Starring one of the sweetest actresses in Asia to ever grace the silver screen: Michelle Chen. This Taiwanese sweetie pie is sweeter than any of the confectionary items in the show. The plot is rather simple. It’s a romantic comedy about the contest of two men who excel at baking for the love of our sweet Michelle Chen.
It uses a mix of Taiwanese and Mandarin, and brings us into small town Taiwan, in a way that has not really been seen since a much older 70s production called “The Story of a Little Town” (小城故事 ). There is sharp wit, and the director takes us into the heart of Taiwan, whilse we see a battle on the bread front, between two men who could not be any different. We have Gao, the classic retro man, one who has never set foot out of his little town, speaks Taiwanese, and looks like a hoodlum. But he has a good heart, but is uncouth, shoo…

URA Draft Master Plan 2013

An interesting development:

About Draft Master Plan 2013
The Master Plan is the statutory land use plan which guides Singapore's development in the near to medium term.
Developed as an inter-agency effort, the Master Plan features a comprehensive and integrated planning approach that ensures our social and economic needs are met, while maintaining a liveable and sustainable environment.
In reviewing the Master Plan, we balance all major land needs in collaboration with relevant government agencies and take into account public feedback gained through our engagement process, before finalising the plans.
PLANNING FOR SINGAPORE’S FUTURESingapore is economically vibrant and one of the most liveable cities in the world. This is a result of our comprehensive and long-term approach in land use planning. This integrated approach is needed to optimise the use of Singapore’s li…