Responses from dougthebiker

McIntosh tube upgrade - worthwhile?
You might want to check out Wathen's Cryotone tubes.  Decware is now offering them as an upgrade in their best amps.  At least one reviewer (HiFi Cave on YouTube) preferred their 300B's over the new Western Electric 300B's (which I have in my amp.... 
Not sure what to think
If you want to stop torturing yourself, get a copy of Jim Smith's GET BETTER SOUND and read it.  He points out the way you have your rig set up in the room is most of the reason for sound quality issues (like the reason you're not hearing differen... 
New DAC issues
@mlsstl   I bought the Yggy just as it was coming out.  As I recall, Jason said that in an interview. Regardless, there are plenty of DACs that aren’t broken in after 400 hours.  My Chord Dave comes to mind.  
New DAC issues
Even Schiit says to play their DACs for about a month before you even listen to them.  I had an Yggdrasil and they were right.  Sounded terrible for the first two weeks of continuous playing. After 4 weeks it was incredibly good for the money.  
looking to replace Fyne speaker jumper cable
Duelund no. 3 silver speaker wire from Audio Connexion.  It will rival the price is no object stuff for about $45/foot.  
Mad Scientist Audio Speaker Cable
Huff doesn’t run any controlled experiments when he reviews things.  He uses whatever he’s got on hand.  I tried one of the streamers he raved about and it was very harsh in my system. Don’t buy anything you can’t try in your own system and retur... 
High Pass Filter for Mains
I’m pretty sure GR Research, you can google their website, makes passive hi-pass filters.  They design crossovers for speaker manufacturers. They will use much higher components than anything discussed above and they are very reasonably priced. ... 
Audioquest or Nordost for speaker cable
Unfortunately, no one's opinion here will do you much good.  Everything in your system - and some things outside your system, e.g., power grid quality - changes the sound. I've found the only reliable approach is to borrow the cables you're consi... 
People complain about lack of bass, not enough mid range. Solution?
As a starting point rule of thumb, you want the distance between the tweeters to be about 83% of the distance from your ear to either tweeter.  (Unless you have one of those rare speakers designed to be in a corner or against the wall.) Most spea... 
can you help me narrow my speaker cables short list please?
If you like the cables you already have, go the eBay or Amazon and search for braided nylon sleeving.  There are some white ones there.  It will cost very little.  Then just finish them off with heat shrink tubing to fasten the ends. Go to any Yo... 
12AX7A preamp tubes - ribbed vs smooth plate
I read a lengthy comparison written years ago about 12AX7s and the writer felt that the 5751 gave a more engaging presentation. The 5751 is a lower gain, quieter version of the 12AX7.  So I tried a Sylvania black triple mica NOS and I agree with ... 
(20 year old) 1.0 meter Kimber hero xlr and Audioquest diamondback xlr cables
Want to surprise yourself again?   Buy the DeOxit/De/Oxit Gold contact cleaner kit (Amazon has it) and clean your old Kimbers and clean the connector on your Accuphase and your PS Audio DAC.  The kit has the little tools that fit inside XLRs.  ... 
The molecular level explanation of "cable burn-in"
Who knows why, but trust your ears. If you can't tell the difference between cheap and expensive cables, your system isn't very resolving or you've got the speakers in the wrong place.  
I am about to embark on my next upgrade journey
It all starts at the source. You're not getting the best out of your system with a laptop at the beginning of the chain.  Get a real streamer.  
What next?
You’re where I was 6 years ago, great speakers, crappy front end.  Buy a used Innuos Zen Mk3 and a decent DAC like a used Schiit Yggy.  They’ll make you happy!