Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review

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Pryso

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #540 on: 1 Feb 2019, 06:07 pm »
This morning I found Don just posted this on Audiogon.  I trust he won't mind my relaying it here.  Now I need to think about the upgrade. :duh:

Hi All,
A customer pointed out this thread to me.   I will just say that I have improved the line stage by about 10-15% in the past few months.   I have gone to a different output cap, a Polish made Duelund copy that is just mesmerizingly good.   Also, about a month ago I managed to adapt the preamp so it can take a 6BY5 rectifier and still use the 6X5GT or Bendix that it always could.  The 6BY5 adds an even richer and fuller tone.   All in all I would say the latest version is 10-15% better than it was a few months ago.

cheers,
Don

RLB61

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #541 on: 11 Feb 2019, 03:21 am »
First post here on the Circle, and I'm glad it's on this thread. Yesterday, I ordered a fully tricked out Model 2 preamp from Don with certain output upgrades to drive properly my low impedance SS power amp and subwoofer. Don has been very informative and patient with my incessant, voluminous questions. I look forward to getting the Model 2 in the next few weeks. Review to follow.

mresseguie

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #542 on: 11 Feb 2019, 06:26 am »
RLB61,

Oh, boy. You are in for a treat. Don’s Model 2 is a beauty - musically and aesthetically.

I’ll probably try the upgrade to the rectifier. The Polish caps will have to wait until late Fall because I don’t want to be without my baby until then.

Michael

P.S. Don’s Kootenay 120 is a perfect match for the Model 2.   :thumb:

RLB61

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #543 on: 12 Feb 2019, 04:58 am »
Trust me, I'm considering seriously the Kootenay ... Don insists that it will take the music to another level over my SS amp. One thing at a time, though. In the meantime, I'm excited about the Model 2.

backsigns

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #544 on: 6 Mar 2019, 10:45 am »

mresseguie,
I have an AVA 400r and was wondering if the .47uf cap in the pre was enough for the amp?
Thanks, Cindy

richidoo

Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #545 on: 6 Mar 2019, 01:21 pm »
Fet Valve 400R has tube input stage so it may be OK with the small coupling cap as tube inputs usually have high input impedance. But you have to ask AVA for the actual spec to know for sure.

Sachs recommends that the preamp's load (amplifier input impedance) should be >80kOhms to prevent rolling off the bass frequencies using the 0.47uF cap.

mresseguie

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #546 on: 6 Mar 2019, 02:24 pm »
mresseguie,
I have an AVA 400r and was wondering if the .47uf cap in the pre was enough for the amp?
Thanks, Cindy

Hello, Cindy.

I'll defer to Richidoo's greater experience, and/or recommend you speak with Frank van Alstine to be certain. That said, my Model 2 sounded just fine with my old 400R. Actually, I've paired my Model 2 with nearly a dozen amps now (mine and other audiophiles' amps) and I have yet to hear a bad match.

Michael


avahifi

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #547 on: 6 Mar 2019, 03:00 pm »
All our Fet Valve series tube/hybrid power amplifiers use a 12AT7/ECC81 tube input stage and have a 1 meg ohm input impedance.  They are a very easy load for any vacuum tube preamplifier to drive.

Frank

backsigns

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #548 on: 6 Mar 2019, 03:04 pm »
 "The amps also have a  very high input impedance so they are easy loads for a preamp to drive.
The input impedance is 1 meg ohm, its a triode tube input" according to Frank in the Why not a 200r topic. I was hoping I didn't have to go any larger than 1uf on the coupling caps. 1Muf is 1000Kuf. If there was plenty of low end with .47uf that would be great, and cheaper. Thanks for your time.

RLB61

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #549 on: 14 Mar 2019, 08:37 pm »
Don told me that larger caps were needed for amps with lower input impedances. So, for example, he put 2.2uF caps onto one output to drive my 31K Ohm power amp, and 3.0 caps onto the other output to drive my 10K Ohm subwoofer.

Wig

Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #550 on: 15 Mar 2019, 02:03 am »
Guys,

I received my modified DS2 last week with Don’s latest Polish made Deulund copy oil caps and 6BY5 rectifier and it sounds amazing! I am hearing more transparency, better sound staging and imaging, more depth, lower floor noise, more air/ambiance. Bass is tighter, midrange is purer/more organic but you are going to be knocked over by its ”HOLOGRAPHIC” presentation; sound emanating beyond the boundaries of my loudspeakers…

It is astonishing how you are immersed into the music with Don’s DS2 Tube Pre; his original DS2 is Amazing but the updated version is “UNBELIEVABLE”! For those of you who are in the market for a new pre-amp, I highly recommend that you put this pre on your short list. If you already own one of Don’s creations, get this updated version done ASAP!

I am not aware of any mods that can radically change the sound of a system for a very small investment. Act now and get your units in or orders placed soon…

Wig :)

kheidenr

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #551 on: 2 Apr 2019, 03:21 am »
@mresseguie

Which AVA 400 amp did you try with Don's preamp?  The FET Valve 400R or the Vision SET 400?

mresseguie

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #552 on: 2 Apr 2019, 11:55 pm »
Kheidenr,

That was the FET Valve 400R.

I hadn’t realized there was another 400 floating around.  :wink:


Michael

kheidenr

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #553 on: 3 Apr 2019, 12:48 am »
I only ask because the new Vision SET 120 is one of the new AVA amps I would try with the Don Sachs pre went I order my new system.  The Vision SET 120 is the smaller output version of the Vision SET 400 which is getting good reviews.

A_shah

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #554 on: 20 Apr 2019, 08:49 am »
Guys,

I received my modified DS2 last week with Don’s latest Polish made Deulund copy oil caps and 6BY5 rectifier and it sounds amazing! I am hearing more transparency, better sound staging and imaging, more depth, lower floor noise, more air/ambiance. Bass is tighter, midrange is purer/more organic but you are going to be knocked over by its ”HOLOGRAPHIC” presentation; sound emanating beyond the boundaries of my loudspeakers…

It is astonishing how you are immersed into the music with Don’s DS2 Tube Pre; his original DS2 is Amazing but the updated version is “UNBELIEVABLE”! For those of you who are in the market for a new pre-amp, I highly recommend that you put this pre on your short list. If you already own one of Don’s creations, get this updated version done ASAP!

I am not aware of any mods that can radically change the sound of a system for a very small investment. Act now and get your units in or orders placed soon…

Wig :)



Wig
that was a GR8 write up - "You convinced me" to send my DS-2 Pre-amp which has Jupiter caps , that sound great but unfortunately they have to come out as not too much space for both the Jupiters & the Dueland  Polish clones , I should get back my unit in about  next 14 to 15 days , I guess that is his turn around time for these mods - do these new caps need time to break in ? :scratch:
Asghar

Sandthemall

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #555 on: 10 May 2019, 03:12 am »
Hi all,
It's my first post here.
I just received my Don Sachs preamp. It has the 6BY5GA full wave rectifier tube mod.  Actually Don sent me both a Zenith 6BY5GA and a Sylvania JAN-CHS-6x5GT (military tube). He wasn't kidding when he said best tubes and caps! I tried the 6BY5GA first and it sounded great...tried the the military tube and there was a noticeable 'sharpness' and 'directness' to the sound which I immediately liked better.  Then I put the Zenith full wave rectifier back in and it was smoother, softer (sweeter?) but had all the detail of the 6x5GT...so it has stayed that way since.

I listen to vinyl mostly: Technics 1200G to Project Phono Box RS (with outboard Power Supply) to D Sachs preamp to Carver TFM-35 to Salk Songtowers

The Carver is the weak link and the last thing I'll be upgrading (soon to be a Don Sachs KT-88 amp).  The Carver has always had sweet high end and mids but the bass has has always been thin.  But the D Sachs preamp makes the sound jump out of the speakers. The bass is perfect.  It seems when I hear drums...they seem to come from their own speaker system that specializes only in drum articulation. This preamp is special.


A_shah

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #556 on: 10 May 2019, 05:49 am »
Today Got back my Don Sachs Pre -up 2 upgraded with the  Polish Dueland copy Caps. and the new 6BY5 rectifier tube , Don sent me a Sylvania, made in USA tube, looks likes a NOS tube ?
First impression : lower noise floor ! very tight Bass presentation.   I Like the new upgrades, I believe they were worth it  for what Mr. Sachs Charges for these modifications, obviously these caps need time to break in , but so far I like the sound , any way now I have two sweet sounding 1uF Jupiter Beewax capacitors for sale , I wish they could have stayed in the pre-amp but their was no place for them in the cabinet  :popcorn: :)



Asghar
« Last Edit: 10 May 2019, 07:46 am by A_shah »

Wig

Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #557 on: 10 May 2019, 05:28 pm »
Asghar,

Congrats on your Sach's DS2 Upgrade! It will continue to get better, especially after the first 70 hours  :popcorn:

Wig :thumb:

Sandthemall

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #558 on: 11 May 2019, 01:57 am »
Very nice Walnut casing. I gotta say, I much prefer the newer, non-italicized font on the front panel on your model.




My preamp has the older panel because I elected to not have XLRs and wanted a very basic unit but with the best tubes/caps. Mr. Sachs was able to find one spare older panel and help me out.



A_shah

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Re: Don Sachs SP14 Tube Preamp Review
« Reply #559 on: 12 May 2019, 08:43 am »
Very nice Walnut casing. I gotta say, I much prefer the newer, non-italicized font on the front panel on your model.




My preamp has the older panel because I elected to not have XLRs and wanted a very basic unit but with the best tubes/caps. Mr. Sachs was able to find one spare older panel and help me out.
@wig

@ sandthemall
Thank you actually mine is the older model , which already had this tape monitor in & outs  and the XLR's when I got it, I sent it back to Don for  upgrade it with his latest thinking last year and now once again sent it back to him for the new mods , what I find interesting  is that these 0.47uf  MiFlex capacitors certainly sound very different from the Jupiter Beeswax 1uf capacitors that were in before this newest upgrades , I do like the Xlr and the Xlr's are used with the the PS audio Directstream DAC,   using solid silver XLR IC from a company in Hungry , the Toslink  glass lifatec   cable from my new LG C8 TV feeds into the toslink input of the DAC I am feeding the RCA (Dueland internal wiring) with the OPPO 205 RCA Jacks ,  I am too lazy for vinyl most of my listening is Hi -rez streaming Quboz or Tidal  like em both and than CD 's  :thumb: :D
Asghar