i managed to buy this from ali tait, its the original jammy special
feckin hell what can i say a huge step up from the ap20 that i have been using
just more of everything nva, emotion,communication,timing, connection with the music. i have been listening to a lot of live rock and 60s jazz recently and the way this amp puts you in the room with the performers is hard to believe you really can hear the room .never heard that before
richard you are a star
Well as long as this doesn't turn out to be possessed, or bursts into flames, it's staying exactly where it is, in my house, working it's magic on my amplification. Quite an eye opener.
Since arrival of the Cubettes I have been replacing cables and a passive preamp with a NVA P50 that was sitting unused for months.
The Cubettes were placed on a pair of target (original company) stands (NOS on Ebay last year). Initially using an old audioquest cable as only NVA I had was configured for bi-wire (LS3). So no direct comparisons with LS5 were made. Initial impressions of Cubettes were mixed. One thing obvious is the amount of musical detail that previously eluded my ears. It took 4 or 5 days for the speakers to show their capabilities. They are very musical and developed a surprising amount of bass for their size. The degree of insight makes one reluctant to go back to medium floorstanders. This is a double edged sword as flaws in recordings and rest of system become apparent. Not everything was not right and sound could become a little strained. These are in a very large room so I decided to introduce a sub woofer just to fill in the lowest frequencies. This does help in my particular circumstances as I like to feel a bit of bass in the room being used to floorstanders.
Introducing the LS5 speaker cable improved things greatly, removing some edge to the sound and letting the music flow better. There was still something holding things back. Introducing the P50 in place of a very old Albarry passive pre improved things somewhat audibly but it's hard to put a finger on this improvement and could be down to the ageing component. Anyway at the least a better cosmetic match with the phono 2. Finally I replaced a mixture of SSC and Chord cables with the SSP. These provided the biggest improvement. More scale to sound and a bright edge removed (put down to the Chord cable). The system was more capable of conveying the musical information from my Orbe / SME combo which suggests the Van den hul cable SME use isn't holding things back and bottleneck was between pre and power amps. All this not very noticeable until switching from Mission 752 to the Cubettes. Having got things right in the afternoon a resumption in late evening meant a further 'warm up'' period. Could be an issue with mains at different time of day? This has got me thinking about trying a BMU again. Certainly would consider an upgrade to Cube 2 based on this. My impression is the Cubettes take a bit of driving. One thing I noticed is that with the P50 the volume has to be at around 2 O' clock for the music to gel from which point loudness increases rapidly. I assume this has to do with the volume pot design?
Overall very positive improvements in system musicality and revealing subtle details in recordings from both analogue and digital sources. Digital sounds more relaxed and even loudly mastered material is more palatable.
Wow is all I can say. Greater resolution and detail and has really opened up the mid range and top end. Very happy
by Fretless » Mon Mar 11, 2019 10:56 am
My own history with NVA started in the mid-80's when I px'd a Nytech CA252 (lovely amp - now much sought-after) for the relatively unknown Nene Valley Audio P50/A40 (stereo) combination. Those were glorious times to be a hifi-nut with a wide range of small manufacturers offering great audio products. That NVA amp had something special and, coupled with a first-series pair of Arcam One speakers, provided me me with musical satisfaction for the following 30 years - only to be replaced in 2015 by a new NVA P50sa and A40 (monoblocks).
In the same period I also got to attend a demonstration of the 'experimental' NVA Cube loudspeaker system. Memories are vague - but these were imposingly-big black casings with the driver mounted in the top plate - weird! Until they got fired up and an incredible archway of music opened up above and around those boxes. This aural experience stayed with me as how music should sound from a hifi and gave me a goal to aim for - one day, my own set of Cubes!
Many years passed and other activities pushed Hifi aside. Eventually a new desire to improve the stereo led me back to the re-vamped NVA and accompanying HFS forum. Here I learnt the black art of Doc-modding speakers and giving a fresh life to ageing audio equipment. Also a pair of venerable Cube3 speakers came into my possession. With new-found skills and some encouragment I fitted these with doped kevlar drivers and current-spec tweeters, then they took up residence in the system and finally I had my Cubes.
But a nagging doubt kept pulling at me. Although these little boxes DO have that Je ne sais quoi factor that semi-omni's display there was something missing. A sense of weight, depth, authority. Things I had heard from the big, black entities all those years ago and had stuck in my mind as 'The Cube Sound'. Perhaps it was my own refurbishing ineptitude but I knew that there was more.
So - up to the present day and the vintage MDF Cube3 have been replaced by the improved acrylic-housed Cube2 and what a difference! There has been no time to experiment with optimal placement, the new Cubes are in the same spot as the old but the character has undergone a dramatic metamorphosis becoming shaper-edged, more weight and solidity, the sense of authority has arrived - the room-filling and enveloping sound-field from memory has materialised and is even better-defined. No harshness but a smooth clarity.
And the Music! Even with just a short while to get acquainted, these speakers have had me completely forgetting hifi and revelling in a new trip through some favourite tracks, eyes closed and submerging myself in the sounds. Where the little 3's could occasionally struggle to be convincing, the 2's don't even bother to start, the performance is just - there! It's hard to describe and I won't bother as I'll only fall into cliches (again). Music is emotion and these plastic cases don't offer any resistance to that - they simply let the emotive content pour straight through them and into the heart of the listener.
The Cube series are going through another transformation with a new-design Acrylic cabinet coming and other developments - so I'm still way behind the times. However it has always been mostly about the music for me, a music fanatic who needs a hifi to give me the best possible access to what an artist has recorded - and with these Cube2's the stage-door has been thrown wide open and I'm in the theatre, front-row centre.
I'm Lovin' It.
Main: NVA: P50sa - SSP - A40 - LS6 - Cube2
Pi: Allo DigiOne Signature/Volumio/Tomanek LPSU/Jitterbug
DAC: Metrum Acoustics Musette CD Transport: Cambridge CXC
Headphones: AQ NightHawk & NightOwl Amp: Schiit Magni-3
DAC: Cambridge DacMagic Plus + Sbooster LPSU
by Quarknosis » Thu Mar 14, 2019 6:42 am
I could talk about how, when I put the Cube 2s in place I got better image depth, instrumental decay and tone with these speakers. Cymbals are more realistic and the musical space seems to be filled out more compared to the Cubettes, bringing greater coherence to a performance. Positions of instruments within the soundstage are more solid and natural. When I first started listening to the Cube 2s bass seemed a little bit deeper and really tuneful, but the bass has a knack of creeping up on you when you aren't expecting it, it's there when it needs to be at whatever level is required and I now find that the bass has the ability to go deeper than I first thought since running in. Its not just bass depth though, I am finding it easier to hear what is in the background being played by bass players in jazz trios while accompanying the other players then coming to the fore when soloing.
All of things are true but the best thing about these speakers is that I am enjoying listening to music, really looking forward to getting home and sitting in front of the system in a way that I haven't done for years
NVA BMU - NVA Phono 1 - Systemdek IIX/Rega RB250/Denon DL160 & Philips CD 104 with NOS mod - TIS & SSP mkii - NVA AP70sa - NVA Cube2 -
I have now added a P50sa to replace my P20 - Thanks Luckyredfish.
With each step I find an improvement to the SQ has followed which in many ways I didn’t expect to be so obvious.
Although the P50sa needs a little higher adjustment to the volume control to reach a realistic level an immediate bass boost was evident through my cubettes along with a smoothness of delivery which is just great!
As the doc suggests this pathway is addictive and when will it stop - LS1 to ? when funds allow!
Amplifier:. Quad Vena, Allo Volt+ stand-alone (2nd system)
Interconnects: NVA SSP Mk2, Gotham spdif, AQ cinnamon optical.
Headphones: AKG K92, AKG K451
Speakers: Quad S1 and NVA LS1, Rega Kyte and LS2 (2nd system)
With the addition of the Cubettes, I am now fully NVA, except sources of courses. (I am also fully valve too on the ‘’other’’ system)
I have only tried the Cubettes on the supports I have, that being on top of my Floor-standers, which are a bit too high and unsteady.
And direct on the floor, slightly raised on a granite slab, hardwood and rubber washers, a little too low. I need some correct height stands, which hopefully I will make this summer but until I have some spare time and a bit of sun on my back, they will have to wait.
When making the stands I think I will attempt to add some kind of height adjuster. And heavy granite, hardwood and rubber washers will be involved. I like their coupling or decoupling properties, whichever it is?
They sound best on-top of the floor standers, so long as I balance on top of a few cushions. So for the purpose of a review I climbed up.
I like following vocals, drums and rhythm when listening, but I don’t often consciously listen analytically, but presume we are constantly unconsciously listening analytically? I am unsure exactly what to listen out for? But I’m enjoying listening and get excited about turning the system on and spinning a record. The days and evenings keep disappearing. A good sign.
The thing I notice mostly is the height of the vocal image, it’s at ear height, which is good! With my other speakers (and system), it was hard to visualise the image more than 12 inches above the floor.
I don’t think they portray anything in a false light so to speak. They reproduce as it was produced initially - eg - Nick Cave sounded clear with good instrument space, deep vocals and very clean bass.
Prefab Sprout’s - Steve McQueen, was clear, spacious, snappy, with a very light 80’s Thomas dolby production ‘’washed’’ over, it Sounded as great as ever.
Bowie as usual, very clear voice, central stage, much taller than I’m used of, but still with jumbled rhythmic mid-range, as normal then!
I also mean to say, thanks for a cracking speaker for a cracking price.
cheers - Kevin