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2 minutes ago, synthz said:

Hehehe wow you are crazy, i thought your room is much bigger than that. The headroom must be crazy. 

 

K02 — I would recommend the Ref 75 highly, and you'll get VU meters also!! :)

Hah, yeah I seriously overcatered. The 250s rarely go over 25W if the meters are to be trusted at ear shattering levels. Nonetheless, they still do sound quite a bit better than the 150, even if I don't use the extra power. I was expecting just more of the same but their sonic signature was actually quite different in unexpected ways, in addition to the obvious expectations of authority, scale and separation.

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3 minutes ago, synthz said:

Yup it kind of sounds like my solid state into tubes transition story hehehe. I have JC1 Parasound solid-state mono blocks with almost 1Kw at 4 Ohm driving the Dynaudio C2 before, but now i'm only using 75w amp, Audio Research Ref 75 and it's still doesn't have any problem whatsoever driving the C2. 

 

I wonder if the Vsi 75 sounds similar like my Ref 75, except yours have a built in preamp inside. (and maybe a DAC?) 

No dac in it only pre amp,  on some of the reviews I read they reckon they amalgamated some of the ref 75 and their pre amp separates into one box, it amazing how you only need 75 watts to fill an average size room and here I am thinking I need 200 watts, wow at 1kw your place must rumble on a spirited listening.

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28 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

Hah, yeah I seriously overcatered. The 250s rarely go over 25W if the meters are to be trusted at ear shattering levels. Nonetheless, they still do sound quite a bit better than the 150, even if I don't use the extra power. I was expecting just more of the same but their sonic signature was actually quite different in unexpected ways, in addition to the obvious expectations of authority, scale and separation.

The best i've done is 30w (shot a video on it the other day when the amp was having a workout). Great to hear the increase in level upgrades gives you significant returns. 

 

One thing that intrigued me though was the fact that you mentioned a key word of 'unexpected', i hope this is still classified as positive experience? Is that like an icing on the cake or added value from ARC behalf perhaps?

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My LM219Ia rarely gets above 0.1 W at normal listening levels

 

EDIT: Sorry about the blurry pic :)

 

45D6A0B0-851F-40BD-AE08-9802E8263035.thumb.jpeg.005a1f08b6965379e26b6e77b28e91cb.jpeg

 

Edited by Sir Sanders Zingmore

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35 minutes ago, KO2 said:

No dac in it only pre amp,  on some of the reviews I read they reckon they amalgamated some of the ref 75 and their pre amp separates into one box, it amazing how you only need 75 watts to fill an average size room and here I am thinking I need 200 watts, wow at 1kw your place must rumble on a spirited listening.

That sounds great! A combo of Ref 75 and maybe Ref 3 preamp in one box, hahaha. 

 

No i don't listen loud, it just becomes fatiguing and harsh when it's too loud. (Although tube gears helps in this regards to remove the harshness)

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Just now, synthz said:

One thing that intrigued me though was the fact that you mentioned a key word of 'unexpected', i hope this is still classified as positive experience? Is that like an icing on the cake or added value from ARC behalf perhaps?

It's definitely a positive experience. There is no doubt they designed their monoblocks differently to their stereo amps, and they're not just the two halves of their stereo amps with more power and power supply (which I actually thought that's all they were, hence unexpected.) The 75 and 150 are similar in sonic signature for example, but the 150 is to my ears more neutral and with more authority at the same volume levels. They are also designed very similarly. The 250s though have a different internal design, and not just "more power and more valves". They go to the crazy extent of using 2 KT150s as just driver tubes in each monoblock for example. The results are a substantially sweeter more liquid upper midrange and treble despite remaining exceptionally neutral in their delivery, and I'd thought the 150 was the final word on that front.

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7 minutes ago, Sir Sanders Zingmore said:

My LM219Ia rarely gets above 0.1 W at normal listening levels

That's one pretty horny setup. I also see that Bowie is undergoing some changes. Most of the time I'm listening below 1W myself too. 25 is when I want Shostakovitch to rock the foundations.

Edited by Ittaku

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30 minutes ago, Sir Sanders Zingmore said:

My LM219Ia rarely gets above 0.1 W at normal listening levels

45D6A0B0-851F-40BD-AE08-9802E8263035.thumb.jpeg.005a1f08b6965379e26b6e77b28e91cb.jpeg

 

Sir, may I ask if that's got to do with horn speakers, or is your amp just that good? (I assume it was built by NASA?) :) 

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7 minutes ago, synthz said:

Sir, may I ask if that's got to do with horn speakers, or is your amp just that good? (I assume it was built by NASA?) :) 

It’s the horns. They are something like 105dB :)

 

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37 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

It's definitely a positive experience. There is no doubt they designed their monoblocks differently to their stereo amps, and they're not just the two halves of their stereo amps with more power and power supply (which I actually thought that's all they were, hence unexpected.) The 75 and 150 are similar in sonic signature for example, but the 150 is to my ears more neutral and with more authority at the same volume levels. They are also designed very similarly. The 250s though have a different internal design, and not just "more power and more valves". They go to the crazy extent of using 2 KT150s as just driver tubes in each monoblock for example. The results are a substantially sweeter more liquid upper midrange and treble despite remaining exceptionally neutral in their delivery, and I'd thought the 150 was the final word on that front.

I'm really happy reading this reply. ARC has great product diversification and it's nice to see them in great extent through your experiences. From Ref 75 - 150 - 250.

 

How come you are skipping the Ref 160M? Did that just only get launched recently? 

image.jpeg.d83fbfe2c615d56214bceb94a7d2aa0a.jpeg

 

Wow, using KT150 for drivers on each monos is quite crazy. That's pretty awesome. I imagine more liquid upper midrange and treble would translate a lot in hi-hats, cymbal crashes and swells, percussions?

 

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Just now, synthz said:

How come you are skipping the Ref 160M? Did that just only get launched recently? 

image.jpeg.d83fbfe2c615d56214bceb94a7d2aa0a.jpeg

 

Wow, using KT150 for drivers on each monos is quite crazy. That's pretty awesome. I imagine more liquid upper midrange and treble would translate a lot in hi-hats, cymbal crashes and swells, percussions?

 

The Ref160M is only brand new. I plan to audition it as soon as CAV have burnt one in :)

 

Yes to all of the above, but it's all the high notes on regular instruments and their harmonics that simply sing. Violins are truly incredible.

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31 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

The Ref160M is only brand new. I plan to audition it as soon as CAV have burnt one in :)

 

Yes to all of the above, but it's all the high notes on regular instruments and their harmonics that simply sing. Violins are truly incredible.

Whoaaa.. that is fantastic! Those VU meters are so sexy! 

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I've noticed in the last few issues of Stereophile they have been reviewing 100W+ tube amps running big tubes, e.g. KT150s and always as PP. If you look at the distortion profiles of these amps there is a lot more distortion than in lower powered SE and SE UL amps. 

 

I'm aware the highest amount of distortion, often 2nd harmonic is 60db down with the others following and therefore should be inaudible.  Inaudible or not these still colour the sound. But there are a lot more higher order harmonics more like what you would expect from SS amps. Only thing is with SS amps they would even be even lower in value again. I'm wondering if it has a lot to do with the fact they are PP amps. Crossover distortion etc. Higher amounts of 2nd and 3rd order are not disagreeable but higher order harmonics are.   

 

The amps get great reviews so what do I know. But I'm shocked that such large amounts of distortion and once more higher order distortion is present. A lot to be said for low power SE UL amps. 

 

But maybe if you have all that power who gives a rats about distortion profile. 

Edited by mwhouston

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44 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

I've noticed in the last few issues of Stereophile they have been reviewing 100W+ tube amps running big tubes, e.g. KT150s and always as PP. If you look at the distortion profiles of these amps there is a lot more distortion than in lower powered SE and SE UL amps. 

 

I'm aware the highest amount of distortion, often 2nd harmonic is 60db down with the others following and therefore should be inaudible.  Inaudible or not these still colour the sound. But there are a lot more higher order harmonics more like what you would expect from SS amps. Only thing is with SS amps they would even be even lower in value again. I'm wondering if it has a lot to do with the fact they are PP amps. Crossover distortion etc. Higher amounts of 2nd and 3rd order are not disagreeable but higher order harmonics are.   

 

The amps get great reviews so what do I know. But I'm shocked that such large amounts of distortion and once more higher order distortion is present. A lot to be said for low power SE UL amps. 

 

But maybe if you have all that power who gives a rats about distortion profile. 

There are certainly many different ways to skin a cat and distortion figures alone never tell the whole story. Everything behaves differently once you attach a load to it and are driving your * choice of driver and some things work well while others don't. Stereophile's one simulated speaker load is a very rudimentary way of measuring the frequency response effect of a simple varying resistance load but still tells you no more than the frequency response plot. I've heard great sound from Class A, AB, D SS (I know I shouldn't admit that on this particular thread lol), SE valve, PP valve, triode, tetrode, pentodes blah blah - but I've also heard bad from all of the above. It's never about technology, but always about implementation. Sticking a set of low distortion high power medium efficiency dynamic drivers on an open baffle on the end of a predominantly class A powerful PP amp happens to give the sound I like. Your particular taste is obvious in your signature. I happen to love that sound too but it's not my overall preference. Neither is perfect, and that's fine.

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26 minutes ago, Sir Sanders Zingmore said:

what speakers are those @ossidian?

Hawthorne Audio Rainier MK III Signature Edition

 

These speakers are essentially Hawthorne Audio Rainier MK II’s with different cosmetics and a couple of significant improvements. 

 

The first improvement is a 15” Pure Audio Project OB-Aneo (SEN) for the mid range unit instead of the Hawthorne Audio 15” mid range unit (both are made by Eminence). Secondly these have a second 15” Hawthorne Audio Augie up top to increase bass response, dynamics and to load the room top to bottom. This really makes for a big improvement over the Rainier and Rainier MK II.

 

So starting from the bottom we have one of the great Hawthorne Audio 15” Augie bass drivers just like the Rainier and Rainier MK II.  Next we have the same wide band AMT driver in a cast wave guide as the Rainier and Rainer MK II covering from 40 kHz to around 500 Hz. Above that we have the afore mentioned PAP 15” OB-Aneo (SEN) filling the gap between the AMT and the Augies. Above that we have a second 15” Hawthorne Audio Augie.

 

The two Augie bass drivers are driven by their own matching SS plate amps (one each channel). The plate amps have line level as well as high level inputs and the crossover point, gain and phase can be adjusted to accommodate the room and listening tastes.

 

The AMT and the PAP have a simple, second order passive crossover, are around 96 db efficient and can be driven with low wattage tube amps. Passive crossover components include Geortz foil inductors as well as Clarity Cap ESA and Audio Note Copper in oil capacitors.

 

The baffle design is the same as the Rainier MK II; an extensional damping configuration with 1” ApplePly center and ¼” cork material on each side. The solid edges are furniture quality ebonized ash and there is a 1/4” brushed aluminum bar stock inlay.

 

The base plate is 3/8” steel with black powder coat finish. The back brace is powder coated black steel tubing that has been mass loaded. 

 

Dimensions are 23” wide 21” deep and 76” high. Weight I would guess to be in the 205 lb. per speaker range.

 

Specs: 20 hz to 40 khz (+/- 3db)

 

 

 

Edited by ossidian

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Trying this Trigon 12AT7 from UK, has the flash at the start like Mullard. Nice sounding tubes, good soundstage and vocal.20181128_220552.jpg

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10 hours ago, dwbasement said:

Trying this Trigon 12AT7 from UK, has the flash at the start like Mullard. Nice sounding tubes, good soundstage and vocal.20181128_220552.jpg

I have Trigon NOS 6V6 in my DIY 6SN7/6V6 power amp and thought them a big step up from some Ozzie 6V6s. I must admit though the Ozzie tubes were well worn. 

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New arrival today, Philips SQ E88CC gold pins to replace Ei 6DJ8. The Phiips is very nice, better separation and cleaner sound.20181129_202827.jpg20181129_203100.jpg

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11 hours ago, dwbasement said:

New arrival today, Philips SQ E88CC gold pins to replace Ei 6DJ8. The Phiips is very nice, better separation and cleaner sound.20181129_202827.jpg20181129_203100.jpg

I love mine, really makes the Stereo Knight Magnetic Enigma sing, beautiful and clear yet no fatigue. I doubt I could do better, for my tastes anyhow.

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1 hour ago, Darren69 said:

I love mine, really makes the Stereo Knight Magnetic Enigma sing, beautiful and clear yet no fatigue. I doubt I could do better, for my tastes anyhow.

I'll have to add the Phillips SQ to my list....

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I love mine, really makes the Stereo Knight Magnetic Enigma sing, beautiful and clear yet no fatigue. I doubt I could do better, for my tastes anyhow.
I am trying to get a Siemens CCa, supposed to be one of the best.

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1 minute ago, dwbasement said:
1 hour ago, Darren69 said:
I love mine, really makes the Stereo Knight Magnetic Enigma sing, beautiful and clear yet no fatigue. I doubt I could do better, for my tastes anyhow.

I am trying to get a Siemens CCa, supposed to be one of the best.

In the case of the Stereo Knight, Darren had 6H30 tubes in the mix. Without meaning to put words in Darren's mouth, the combo of the SS / precise 6H30 and the Siemens was too much of a good thing. The Siemens are very detailed and have plenty of oomph for sure. Ironically, I've had really good results with the lowly Amperex frame Dimple disc 6922's. A very cheap and easy to get tube. Works brilliantly in my BHK Preamp. 

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6 minutes ago, dwbasement said:
1 hour ago, Darren69 said:
I love mine, really makes the Stereo Knight Magnetic Enigma sing, beautiful and clear yet no fatigue. I doubt I could do better, for my tastes anyhow.

I am trying to get a Siemens CCa, supposed to be one of the best.

The thing I found that makes the most difference in the Siemens E88cc group is the dividing shield between the plates.

The grey shield had a full, saturated sound which is superb whilst the silver shield are more aggressive.

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