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New music listening room

Michael Valentine Studio
New music listening room 2022
New music listening room

Click images above to enlarge.

Moving on up (or down South to be more accurate)...

After over fifty years of relatively peaceful living in South London, I have been fortunate to be able to relocate to hopefully almost guaranteed peace (and greater space) of the South Coast.

Like many house hunting music lovers, my top priority (alongside location - location, aspect and property structural integrity) is ‘can the hi-fi and music collection fit comfortably in the new listening space?’

This is my third and hopefully final move, so I had to get it right! Now with greater musical experience, more (and better) hi-fi components and an even larger record collection, I look forward to designing my music listening room (Michael Valentine Studio) almost from scratch.

After nearly eight months of planning, re-planning and waiting for local authority approval, building works started on 31 January 2022. The cost of living, building and labour costs have increased (and continue to rise) dramatically, however, I am still working hard to insure I reach my goal. The initial predicted completion date was the end of April 2022, however, due to unpredictable weather patterns, minor design alterations and structural calculation changes, the completion prediction date is now towards the end of May 2022? Obviously I am keen to get back to serious listening, but I much prefer for this project to take longer as long as everything is completed to an exceptional standard!

When the planned extension to my new music listening room is complete, dimensions will be 3.65m width X 8.38m length (12’Width X 27.5’ in old money). This may not seem very substantial to some (especially to some of my American cousins) but this is a huge increase on my previous listening space and opens up various component placement possibilities (especially as a MartinLogan ESL user). A dedicated ring main (or two) or perhaps individual radial circuits will be installed for the system and most importantly, I will be looking to purchase new amplification.

The amplification shortlist at present:


1. Audia Flight Strumento No. 4 MKII stereo power amplifier (added to list April 2022)

Audia Flight Strumento No. 4 MKII Stereo Power Amplifier

2. Gryphon Diablo 300 integrated amplifier

Gryphon Diablo 300 integrated amplifier


3. Hegel H590 integrated amplifier

Hegel H590 integrated amplifier

4. Coda 60.0 mono amplifier x 2 (with FET Preamplifier 06x or 07x)

Coda 60.0 mono amplifier x 2 (with FET Preamplifier 06x or 07x)

Research and communication with all the above amplifier companies continues during building works.
Other amplifiers may be added to the mix, while others may be removed. Watch this space for progress…

Robin Francis
© Michael Valentine Studio
December 2021 - April 2022

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