Future owner needs advices

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. Read 6426 times.

GBouillon

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #20 on: 31 Mar 2017, 03:11 pm »
Where can I buy/see/read info on Dennis Had's amplifiers?

Thanks!

seikosha

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 200
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #21 on: 31 Mar 2017, 03:14 pm »
Don't take what that dealer said about the Omegas too seriously.  Before I had Omegas I had Harberth P3ESR's and Kef LS50's.  I don't miss them a bit.  I'll be the first to say that the really high frequencies are better with conventional speakers, but the Omegas win out in midrange with every comparison I've done.  Like I've said in the past, who cares if the 5% of music that lives in the high frequencies is better if the majority of the frequencies sound worse.

After living with and loving the Decware amps for about 5 years, I've found a new favorite and that's the Quicksilver Horn Monos.  You might want to consider that amp as well; it sounds fantastic.

DaveC113

  • Industry Contributor
  • Posts: 3924
  • ZenWaveAudio.com
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #22 on: 31 Mar 2017, 03:43 pm »
Sounds like a dealer to stay far away from. If he doesn't realize speakers are trade-offs he's deluded. If he does and still said what he did he's not being honest. Either way you look at it, a dealer or manufacturer putting down his competition like that is completely unacceptable.

If you want a separate tweeter you might get more extension, but then you have to listen to that separate tweeter and even the best of the best aren't that great especially when they are crossed over in a sensitive range of our hearing, which they almost always are. The Omega models you are looking at will provide decent mid-bass and will blend with a subwoofer well if you choose, just like any other speaker, and top end extension is in fact very similar or better vs the LS3/5

As far as the LS3/5, it has a single 5" woofer in a sealed box and no real output <100 Hz, and the larger tweeter rolls off around 15 kHz, so the performance at the low and high end of the Omegas is likely to be better. Also, the LS3/5 has ~83 dB sensitivity and very poor spectral decay plots, it's a poor measuring speaker by today's standards. Not that I think measurements are everything but the dealer touted them as the reason the LS3/5 is better and he couldn't be more mistaken.

http://www.stereophile.com/content/falcon-acoustics-ls35a-loudspeaker-measurements#PFQ0frIwb4VOSHTo.97

roscoe65

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 656
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #23 on: 31 Mar 2017, 03:55 pm »

GBouillon

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #24 on: 31 Mar 2017, 04:09 pm »
Thank you guys for reassuring me with real arguments and technical facts! I won't call this guy again and he certainly not going to come to my house for a listening session with his stuff (that is what he does...). Case close, then.

@seikosha

I'll definitely have a look at Quicksilver.

@Roscoe

Thanks for the link!


GBouillon

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #26 on: 31 Mar 2017, 04:44 pm »
@Canada Rob

WOW! Thanks man!  :thumb:

Canada Rob

  • Industry Participant
  • Posts: 1024
    • Industry Participant
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #27 on: 31 Mar 2017, 04:54 pm »
If you are into solid state these amps might be a good choice.  Class A/B chip amps have great low level dynamics, and so do Class D. Omega speakers like amps that have great low level dynamics. 

http://www.audiosector.com/chassis_integrated.shtml

http://www.bantamone.com/

http://www.templeaudio.net/

http://www.triartaudio.com/

Beatlebum

Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #28 on: 31 Mar 2017, 05:15 pm »
GB,

I will likely be selling my Inspire IFA-1 KT88 based amplifier with Blue Alps volume control in the future. Let me know if you might be interested. As a fellow A-Circle member, I'm sure we could work out a fair deal.

Tim

GBouillon

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #29 on: 31 Mar 2017, 06:18 pm »
@Canada Rob

I had bad experiences with solid state so far. But I will have a look. Thanks!

@Beatlebum

Thanks for the offer! Does the Inspire IFA-1accept EL34 or 84 tubes too? How can I get more information about Dennis Had amps? Can barely find anything about them. Looks like a secret club or something..!

Beatlebum

Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #30 on: 31 Mar 2017, 06:34 pm »
GB,

My Inspire IFA-1 accepts multiple power tubes such as 6L6/KT66, EL34/KT77, 6550/KT88, KT120. Input driver tube 6CG7/6DJ8/6922/7308. Rectifier is 5AR4.




roscoe65

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 656
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #31 on: 31 Mar 2017, 07:03 pm »
@Canada Rob

I had bad experiences with solid state so far. But I will have a look. Thanks!

@Beatlebum

Thanks for the offer! Does the Inspire IFA-1accept EL34 or 84 tubes too? How can I get more information about Dennis Had amps? Can barely find anything about them. Looks like a secret club or something..!

Dennis sells his amps directly on Ebay under the username Radioman731.  You can contact him via Ebay for information.  The Audioaficianado thread I posted earlier is the single biggest repository of information about these amps on the Internet.  There are a number of Audiocircle members who also post over there.  Dennis is the former owner and chief designer of Cary Audio.  He "retired" a few years ago and started fixing up old Magnavox console amps a few years ago before selling scratch amps under the Inspire Fire Bottle name.


Dennis has two basic amps:  a SEP amp with one tube, driven by a 6SN7 (earlier versions such as my own use a 6DJ8 or 6CG7).  The amp will run any pentode or tetrode you can plug into it, from an EL84 with socket adapter to a KT150.  It will put out about 5wpc with a 6V6 or 12wpc with a KT88 or KT150.  His other basic amp is the PSE - parallel single ended power amp (I have one of these as well).  It is largely the same as the previously described amp, but uses uses 6SN7 > parallel output tubes.  It runs from 10wpc (6v6) to about 20-24wpc (KT88 or KT150).  It is pretty easy on output tubes.  According to Dennis the KT77 is the killer tube with this amp.  The amps are all handwired point to point and looks professionally done in the small volume manufacturer sort of way.  He chooses parts he likes that that he thinks are worth the money.  He does not use uber expensive boutique parts, though he will substitute if you like (to a degree).  Currently he likes the Jantzen Silver film coupling caps.  The output transformers can drive anything from 2-16 ohms.

Pricing for the amps run about $1,300 for the single SEP amp and $2,300 for the PSE amp.  If you buy an amp, you can also get the insider price on a killer tube line stage as well.  He sells the LP-27a preamp (type 80 rectifier, 27 or 56 tube > 6SN7).  It has three inputs and two outputs.  It comes stock with an ALPS pot but he will upgrade to a DACT stepped attenuator if you wish at cost.  I think I paid about $1,400 for mine with the DACT.

The filler setup would be an LP-27a with a KT-77 PSE for about $4,000 total.  This combo would drive any speaker with a sensitivity over 90dB.  The sound can be tweaked by rolling 6SN7 tubes and the output tubes.  There are owners who have spent as much on tubes as they have on their amp, experimenting with as many as 20 or 30 different tube types and brands.

The sound of the Inspire amps is more McIntosh than Dynaco.  The PSE amp reminds me as much of a McIntosh MC225 as any other amp I've heard.  Keep in mind that these amps are two stage and like to be driven by a preamp (or high output source).  The LP-27a is a perfect match for them.

He also will do some special versions such as a triode wired SEP amp or even a SET 45 amp, but most of his amps are the SEP or PSE amps I described.

GBouillon

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #32 on: 31 Mar 2017, 07:26 pm »
@ Roscoe and Beatlebum

If I understand correctly (I am not a technical guy at all and I am really new to tube amplifiers), the Inspire IFA-1 is a power amplifier that must be used with a preamp/line stage like the LP-27a? Or is it an integrated? Can it be used alone? Is the Inspire IFA-1 a SEP or a PSE?

I am confused. :o

opnly bafld

Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #33 on: 31 Mar 2017, 08:20 pm »
.................Same thing with the Line Magnetic 216ia (KT88, UL push-pull).

The 216/211 IA amps can be run in triode also.  :thumb:

If I understand correctly (I am not a technical guy at all and I am really new to tube amplifiers), the Inspire IFA-1 is a power amplifier that must be used with a preamp/line stage like the LP-27a? Or is it an integrated? Can it be used alone? Is the Inspire IFA-1 a SEP or a PSE?

When I bought my SEP Dennis told me to use a preamp, I don't get full output without one. (source 2v CD player).

roscoe65

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 656
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #34 on: 31 Mar 2017, 09:10 pm »
The IFA-1 precedes the Firebottle HO and appears to be of identical electrical layout, just physically different.  My KT88HO has the same 6DJ8>KT88 layout as an IFA-1.  I would imagine them to both behave similarly.  Both lack an input tube and have only a single stage driver tube (double triode split between two channels) and a single output tube.  While they can be driven directly from a source, they do better with a preamp unless your source is running a least 3 or 4 volts.

I've said that the Inspire amps can best be viewed as half of an integrated amp and need a gain stage to be at their best.  Other amps also "need' a preamp as well, while others have a low input sensitivity and high enough gain to stand on their own.  I have a SE 421A amp that has only two stages:  6SL7 > 421A.  But the 6SL7 is a high gain tube and the 421A is easy to drive.  It gets its full 4wpc output with less than 0.5 volts at the input.  If I added more inputs and a selector switch it would be a valid integrated amp.

DaveC113

  • Industry Contributor
  • Posts: 3924
  • ZenWaveAudio.com
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #35 on: 31 Mar 2017, 09:36 pm »
The IFA-1 precedes the Firebottle HO and appears to be of identical electrical layout, just physically different.  My KT88HO has the same 6DJ8>KT88 layout as an IFA-1.  I would imagine them to both behave similarly.  Both lack an input tube and have only a single stage driver tube (double triode split between two channels) and a single output tube.  While they can be driven directly from a source, they do better with a preamp unless your source is running a least 3 or 4 volts.

I've said that the Inspire amps can best be viewed as half of an integrated amp and need a gain stage to be at their best.  Other amps also "need' a preamp as well, while others have a low input sensitivity and high enough gain to stand on their own.  I have a SE 421A amp that has only two stages:  6SL7 > 421A.  But the 6SL7 is a high gain tube and the 421A is easy to drive.  It gets its full 4wpc output with less than 0.5 volts at the input.  If I added more inputs and a selector switch it would be a valid integrated amp.

Yup, 6SN7 is only enough for ~15 dB gain in that scenario, more or less depending on the power tube but it's much less than typical. 6SL7 gives more typical gain but isn't suitable for driving most power tubes. If the SL7 is followed by a SN7 White cathode follower or Broski's Aikido cathode follower then you have a fairly ideal driver circuit imo, but that's one more stage... Also, not super ideal if it doesn't have it's own power supply, which is where a separate preamp is going to be more ideal...

My setup runs the SL7 > SN7 CF output as a voltage amp in it's own chassis/power supply then the power tube in it's own chassis/PS, so it's basically a voltage amp followed by a power buffer. After years of experimentation I've found this works really well. I've tested SS amps that are more slow/tubey sounding vs my setup...

roscoe65

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 656
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #36 on: 31 Mar 2017, 10:45 pm »
Yup, 6SN7 is only enough for ~15 dB gain in that scenario, more or less depending on the power tube but it's much less than typical. 6SL7 gives more typical gain but isn't suitable for driving most power tubes. If the SL7 is followed by a SN7 White cathode follower or Broski's Aikido cathode follower then you have a fairly ideal driver circuit imo, but that's one more stage... Also, not super ideal if it doesn't have it's own power supply, which is where a separate preamp is going to be more ideal...

My setup runs the SL7 > SN7 CF output as a voltage amp in it's own chassis/power supply then the power tube in it's own chassis/PS, so it's basically a voltage amp followed by a power buffer. After years of experimentation I've found this works really well. I've tested SS amps that are more slow/tubey sounding vs my setup...

That is exactly how the Firstwatt F4 is described:  as a power buffer that converts voltage to current.  It would be interesting to compare it with your amp.

The Inspire PSE uses a new power supply trick that Dennis came up with as a running change.  He calls it an Infinite Impedance Power Supply (IIPS).  He took an standard power supply (tube rectified with zener regulated power supply for the driver stage grid supply) and replaced the rectifier tube with a pair of diodes.  He then rewired the rectifier tube so it was between the B+ and regulated supply.  It effectively presented an infinite impedance (the tube vacuum) between the B+ and grid supply.  Fluctuations in the B+ supply are buffered from the sensitive grid supply, helping to minimize parasitic distortion.  It also doesn't hurt that the diodes are able to instantaneously supply more current under load.  I theorize that the tube "buffer" between the power supply sections works both ways, damping PS variations in the B+ as well.

This is not a tubey sounding amp (or as Dennis calls it, an "Old Man's Amp").  It is very fast and authoritative.  I would imagine that with a pair of RS8 drivers or perhaps RS3 1.5's this thing could be incredibly fast and dynamic.  With the gain that the LP27a adds and with 16wpc (with KT77's) into almost any reasonable speaker load I can't imagine an Omega speaker with wouldn't suit.

Beatlebum

Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #37 on: 31 Mar 2017, 11:39 pm »
The IFA-1 precedes the Firebottle HO and appears to be of identical electrical layout, just physically different.  My KT88HO has the same 6DJ8>KT88 layout as an IFA-1.  I would imagine them to both behave similarly.  Both lack an input tube and have only a single stage driver tube (double triode split between two channels) and a single output tube.  While they can be driven directly from a source, they do better with a preamp unless your source is running a least 3 or 4 volts.

I've said that the Inspire amps can best be viewed as half of an integrated amp and need a gain stage to be at their best.  Other amps also "need' a preamp as well, while others have a low input sensitivity and high enough gain to stand on their own.  I have a SE 421A amp that has only two stages:  6SL7 > 421A.  But the 6SL7 is a high gain tube and the 421A is easy to drive.  It gets its full 4wpc output with less than 0.5 volts at the input.  If I added more inputs and a selector switch it would be a valid integrated amp.

I'm not that well versed in all of the electrical stuff involved. All I know is that running my Audio Technica  ART-9 low output MC cartridge thru my Herron Audio VTPH-2 and directly into my IFA-1 I have all the volume I need at around 10:00 on the volume control. I look at it as a purer signal. That's my view. One less set of I/C's, one less power cord, etc. I really don't feel like (or hear) I'm missing or lacking anything sonically.

Conversely, in the past when I've had preamps, the noise always seemed louder (tube hiss) and the volume got too loud to quick on the attenuator.

I prefer my Berning ZH270 without a preamplifier as well.

Cheers!

roscoe65

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 656
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #38 on: 1 Apr 2017, 12:05 am »
With that combo you're putting out about 1.4V, which should be suitable as a line signal but is lower than I prefer.  However, your tube phono stage may be able to drive the amp a bit stronger.

More importantly, you're happy with it.

R

FullRangeMan

  • Volunteer
  • Posts: 11161
  • All Tweeters look like a target, then shoot them!
    • Never go to a psychiatrist, adopt a straycat or dog. On the street they live only two years average.
Re: Future owner needs advices
« Reply #39 on: 1 Apr 2017, 12:47 am »
Where can I buy/see/read info on Dennis Had's amplifiers?

Thanks!
He sell under Radioman731 on Ebay>
http://www.ebay.com/usr/radioman731?_trksid=p2047675.l2559