particular unit is a must if, like me you like to try out different
components within your hi-fi system, as it was specifically designed
by Quad in such a way that settings can easily be adjusted by the user.
stated in the literature of the day that;
If everything were perfect, a control unit would consist of a
volume control and a programme selector switch. Unfortunately this is
not the case. Todays music listener is faced with two major
problems, how to ensure that his choice from the myriad range of
pickup cartridges, tape recorders, radio tuners and microphones is
correctly terminated by his amplifier; (a recent but by no means
exhaustive guide lists 165 stereo pickups, 162 cassette decks, 44
open reel tape recorders, 115 radio tuners, 190 microphones, to say
nothing of add-on equalisers, expanders, noise suppressors, etc); and
how to cope with the problems of loudspeaker/room and programme/room
interactions which become increasingly apparent with the steady
improvement in the technical quality of programme material.
44 has five inputs in total, all of which are activated by buttons
on the left hand side of the fascia panel. The inputs consist of Disc
(Vinyl), Tape 1 and 2, Radio and Auxiliary, which are in fact
interchangeable modules. What this means is, that by removing a
couple of screws, the modules can be removed and replaced, so that
any combination of inputs can be obtained, with options for moving
coil pickup, and more recently the CD module. Interestingly too, when
the CD module is obtained from Quad, they also provide a replacement
fascia panel button marked CD which can also be easily changed.
tone controls consisting of Tilt, Bass and Filter, which enable the
user to correct for those acoustic problems, which are amenable to
frequency response shaping. According to Quad, the performance of the
Quad 44 meets the simple Quad criterion, that
programme fed through the unit shall suffer no audible degradation,
in other words, with the filter switch in the Cancel position there
shall be no audible difference between the programme at the input to
and output from the Quad 44, when compared at idetitical levels. This
is true for all inputs when used with their specified
sourceimpedances and within their specified input signal limits.
Quad 44 will sound no better, or worse than the programme fed into
it. Used intelligently, these controls can improve the results
obtained from almost any programme to amplifier level and permits the
listener to adjust and apply tonal correction.
Tilt control has the effect of gently shifting the tonal balance,
about a centre frequency of 1 kHz. The operation of the control is
self evident and the result is subtle but effective. A notch
clockwise and an over bright recording/listening room will sound more
natural and vice versa.
Bass control has two functions; Lift when it can be used to boost
the low frequency response of small loudspeakers, where the operation
is smooth and progressive, and Step to attenuate bass output when it
operates as a filter giving a 5dB drop at two frequencies. The step
filter is designed to remove the 'honk' which characterises so many loudspeaker/listening
room combinations, particularly when the loudspeakers have to be
placed close to the floor or walls.
filter remains an essential tool for removing unwanted by-products
from programme in the upper frequency range without impairing the
musical content and the Quad 44 retains the Filter system used on its
predecessors, the Quad 22 and 33, having a constantly variable slope
with three operating frequencies. The Cancel position of the filter
switch bypasses the Filter and Tilt and Bass controls.
that Vinyl is making a come-back, and records are being produced
again, many hi-fi enthusiasts find that their modern equipment is not
designed for vinyl, and requires them to purchase an external Head
Amp that will match their cartridge before they can play a record
again. But despite the advancements in digital technology, where the
CD is now firmly established, the Quad 44 has no problem fitting into
todays system, which goes a long way to demonstrate how
advanced the thinking behind the 44 really was, where it can easily
embrace new technology, and at the same time still provide the user
more than a stand alone input for vinyl. The Disc (Vinyl) input has
three sensitivity settings and can either be purely resistive or
provide extra capacity if required to match the load requirements of
a particular cartridge, selected by DIP switches accessible through a
small access panel on the top of the unit.The Disc input is designed
to provide an exact inverse of the RIAA recording characteristic.
When the correct sensitivity setting is chosen, the dynamic range of
the programme is optimised in relation to the input noise level and
the input cannot be overloaded. Performance of the Disc input is
totally unaffected by the source impedance of the cartridge. A high
pass filter is incorporated to remove spurious signals below 20Hz.
Input to Disc is via either a standard 5 pin Din or phono sockets.