Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++

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aaron.luebke

I guess I'm a third hand owner of this. 

Power supply for the Kismet amp, which is a combo Candela and left channel Kismet power amp, is on the left hiding behind the TT accessories.  The Khartago (kismet) right channel is on the right bottom and the big kid is low center.  Odd setup, but it works.  Purchased from a friend on another forum and took some horse trading but it arrived today after sitting on the fedex truck for days waiting for weather to clear.

I need to give it a few days to warm up and let the caps stabilize before really listening.  My prior rig was Tempest and Stratos dual mono Extreme +++.  This setup does allow other pre's to be used.

But so far so good!!!   :thumb:


« Last Edit: 20 Feb 2019, 09:32 pm by aaron.luebke »

Brettio

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #1 on: 9 Feb 2019, 02:37 am »
Congratulations on this very cool set up! I’ve only recently learned about the unique Candela/mono power amp - mono amp combination, that’s awesome that you’re the owner of one.  There’s a whole lot of Odyssey in your home and I know it’ll sound fantastic. 

Brett

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #2 on: 9 Feb 2019, 02:49 pm »
Some pic's from the seller.  I had the Kismet cover off to put tubes in but forgot to take pics.  I think I stared at these pic's for 30 minutes before I committed to buying trying to figure out how it all went together.  There is a lead from the pre to power board in the Kismet but not hooked up.  In this way you just "jumper" from left out to power amp in on the same chassis (using standard RCA cables, the other 1/2 of what you connect the Khartago side up with).  Then hook up the right channel like you would "normally".  That also allows other preamps to be used and I've got the Tempest here yet waiting for its turn.  However, based on the sound I'm getting it might not get a turn!  I've got ECC802s tubes from Tesla (yellow label) in now.

The stack:

The little guy on top has the transformers for the Kismet Power/Candela in it.  That attaches to the Kismet with umbilical's.  One is 4 pin, the other 5 pin so you can't mix them up.

Next is the Khartago containing a Kismet power amp.  I can see the gray transformer and nice blue Symphonic caps through the holes in the top.

On the bottom is the big boy.  A Kismet power amp/Candela combination.


Kismet power + Candela:


Left side of the stack.  Power supply on top with umbilical outs and power in.
Khartago next - standard for a mono amp
Kismet on the bottom with the power in's, RCA in and speaker outs


Other side of the Kismet with the standard inputs and outputs.  The HT isn't - it's a standard IN





Brettio

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #3 on: 9 Feb 2019, 04:11 pm »
Klaus worked overtime on this one! 

Hopefully not sidetracking the conversation, but is the grey transformer an upgrade from the black one? 

Enjoy your weekend,  Brett

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #4 on: 9 Feb 2019, 08:54 pm »
A couple threads in here hint at that...and I think I saw a picture, somewhere.  I think prior trannies were either naked (way back in the day) or black cans.

"I'm upgrading the 16K caps in your amps to the new Symphonic Line 35 K Hyper caps....and then the trannies to the big momma 850 VA,  which goes hand in hand."

Still searching...

ahhh….wasn't here.  Just google Odyssey Audio Kismet - and hit images.  Only amps I see with the big gray monsters are Kismet.

Something about big caps and inrush current keeps rattling around in my head.

Brettio

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #5 on: 9 Feb 2019, 09:20 pm »
Thank you for all the research you did on this, i appreciate it.  I’ll look around more.  It’s always fun to figure out how the Odyssey amps are upgraded.....Klaus is definitely not a one size fits all kind of guy! 

Enjoy your new equipment, this set up is so cool and I’m sure the sounds coming out are sublime...

Brett

theopaul

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #6 on: 10 Feb 2019, 02:40 am »
I'm sure you will love your unusual Kismet setup. I just got my Kismet monoblocks back from Klaus last Sunday. I'm in audio heaven and they still have a lot of break in time left. Like you I am the third owner of the boxes and this is the third time they have been back to Klaus for upgrades. I suspect that aside from the some of the outer case parts not much of the original is left. Klaus gave me the max upgrades and he said they are identical to what he has. He included some great power cords and interconnects too.
These new amps replaced a Threshold T200, and are a serious upgrade from the t200.
Klaus is a great guy to deal with too.

klaus@odyssey

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #7 on: 10 Feb 2019, 06:27 am »
Well thanks for the vine here,  and yup,  they are build to the max now Theo....as for the integrated,  Aaron, you also got one hell of a deal  knowing where they came from....the original owner had the integrated and wanted to upgrade to monos,  but keeping the main unit...so,  what to do ???  Was a bit of experimenting,  but the results were fantastic...both of you guys have some massively upgraded reference stuff....enjoy..........

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #8 on: 10 Feb 2019, 08:06 pm »
Klaus, as always, thank you!  Your gear is amazing stuff and you continue to move forward with it.  I really do appreciate the work you do.    :beer:

Theo - Might see you at Dales in April?

I listened primarily to the Tempest + Stratos  prior to this rig but the frequency seems more extended with the Kismet.  Better bass and highs.  Found the set of tubes I put in were marginal (with one side of one failing my tester) so I just moved in a second set.  These are Amperex 7316's and tested 100%+.  Need time for them to cook.

Klaus - what tubes do you use in the Candela?

theopaul

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #9 on: 12 Feb 2019, 06:53 pm »
Arron,
I hope you do come to Dale's in April. Since I'll be cooking something good, the trip from Rockford will be worth it. I may be almost a good a cook as Klaus is an audio engineer.

Eugene2

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #10 on: 12 Feb 2019, 07:29 pm »
Yep the Kismet integrated was originally mine!  Hated to give it up but had to move to smaller quarters...  Sold my entire system sadly, the integrated drove an unbelievable system Vapor Joules, Antipodes DX, PS Audio DS, PS Audio PWT, Verastarr silver cabling and power conditioning by Zenwave and the Kismet kicked ass!  Never even thought about upgrading.  Shocked that it was sold again!  Klaus is the man!  I owned Odyssey mono blocks prior to the Kismet and when I move to a bigger house I’m going right back to Klaus!

Vr3

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #11 on: 13 Feb 2019, 01:03 am »
I bought these from Eugene2! Appreciate Aaron working out a deal that worked out for both of us! The setup was killer, incredible sound as Aaron describes. My biggest OCD killer was the 3 different chassis thing, as lame as that is! haha! On top of that, I completely changed directions a little, currently running a passive preamplifier... took this bad boy from Aaron on trade along with some other goodies! :p

Im comparing it to a Pass Labs X150 (that needs service) - may send it to Klaus for upgrades, not really sure.

I can say that it, paired with the passive, the tri vista dac and some select cables, sounds incredibly good!



aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #12 on: 13 Feb 2019, 02:08 am »
Thank goodness for OCD!  Rolling tubes through the Candela section now.

7316 - nope
Amperex 12AU7a orange label - nope
RCA clear top (marked Baldwin) - nope
CBS Hytron 12AU7 - good
RCA 5963 - good
unmarked 5814 black plates - nice!

Still to go:
5814 GE 5 star gray plates
couple pair of generic RCA 12AU7a

The bad pair I started with were Tesla Ecc802S and those were amazing but one failed...

I'm going to try 6SN7's in it once the pair of adapters arrive.  The problem there is keeping to the short bottles as the top will not close if I go taller.

I had no intention of upgrading but with the Stratos part of the deal it got fairly simple.  I just didn't think it could get better but hey...Klaus is involved so of course it got better!

AlexG

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Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #13 on: 14 Feb 2019, 01:15 am »
Hey aaron,

Need to jump here...be very careful with those adapters if they are not design correctly....they are used mainly in musical instrument amps (preamp section). The 6SN7 is not a direct replacement in the Candela! If you are lucky all what you get is a little more gain, and with that perhaps some hum... Not a good idea!
Sorry...

Cheers,
Alex

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun!
« Reply #14 on: 14 Feb 2019, 04:34 am »
No need for sorry!  If you just saved me from making a mess much appreciated! :thumb:

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++
« Reply #15 on: 20 Feb 2019, 09:37 pm »
This rig replaced a Tempest/Stratos dual mono Extreme +++ setup.  Speakers are Lorelei's from Klaus.

I really didn't think this would do much for me.  I was enjoying the original setup but things change.

Overall the sound stage has improved.  It was good and very satisfactory before but now it is deep, wide and placement of vocals and instruments is very specific.  Bass is more controlled and... probably not deeper but more pronounced.  Upper registers are also better, more twinkle! 

I'm still rolling through tubes (12au7's Alex - no crazy tubes!).  I have about 8 pair so it takes some time to evaluate them. 

If you're on the fence as to going with the Extreme or moving up to Kismet don't ponder too long.  This was definitely worth it.

AlTran

Re: Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++
« Reply #16 on: 21 Feb 2019, 12:38 am »
Aaron,
I'm not an expert in tubes. But I do have hundreds of 12AU7 families. 6SN7 with an adapter, I don't see nothing wrong with that you are being so brave & want to try something different, my only suggestion is that we all know Klaus & Alex are extremely busy with their orders, if anything happened & you need to send in to Klaus & Alex for repair, be sure to be patient with the wait.  :lol: :lol: :lol:

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++
« Reply #17 on: 21 Feb 2019, 01:54 am »
Aaron,
I'm not an expert in tubes. But I do have hundreds of 12AU7 families. 6SN7 with an adapter, I don't see nothing wrong with that you are being so brave & want to try something different, my only suggestion is that we all know Klaus & Alex are extremely busy with their orders, if anything happened & you need to send in to Klaus & Alex for repair, be sure to be patient with the wait.  :lol: :lol: :lol:


shhhh….don't blow my cover....  :no_see:  :no_hear: :no_speak: If I do blow it up have an accident that requires a trip to Indianapolis I will be ever patient.  The original system is still here so I have backup! 

I've used the 6SN7 adapter in more than one piece of equipment and I do have a very well built favorite. 

And those of you reading this... I take full responsibility for anything that happens should I stray from the path recommended by the Odyssey Audio Team.  I do NOT recommend you follow in my footsteps.  If I do try something and it works for me that does not mean it will work for you.
« Last Edit: 21 Feb 2019, 05:00 pm by aaron.luebke »

SoCalWJS

Re: Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++
« Reply #18 on: 27 Feb 2019, 05:33 pm »
Reading through this thread has me thinking and trying to understand...

What is the +++ heirarchy? Is it standard? What is the usual order? How many Pluses are possible?

I'm in the process of buying some used Kismets in Khartago Chassis's and while I know which upgrades they have, I have no idea if that makes them pluses or not, nor how many pluses.  :dunno:

(They are scheduled to arrive on Friday and I am anxiously tracking their progress as they ship across the Country)

aaron.luebke

Re: Kismet - new fun! And comparison to Stratos Extreme +++
« Reply #19 on: 27 Feb 2019, 08:27 pm »
I think only Klaus can answer that one with authority.  At least one + has to do with the number of capacitors.  Used to be different boards but I'm not sure if that's true anymore.  Possibly upgraded RCA's or speaker terminals.  I've never seen over 3 +'s.  I think once you've exceeded the 3+ limit you're into Kismet territory.

Again - Klaus or someone from Odyssey are the only ones I know that can answer this and give you specifics.