Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?

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Sonance84

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I'm curios as to what people are using, as far as solid state amps, with their SWL 9.0 preamps. I'm contemplating making the jump, but not sure how it would match up to my amp, a Pass Labs X150.

Please post which preamp version and solid state amp model number.

Yomaha

Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #1 on: 16 Jul 2019, 09:47 pm »
Sonance84,

I have a SWL 9.0AE that I use with a PS Audio BHK250.  The BHK is a hybrid amp so not pure SS.  I have really enjoyed it.  I previously had a Dennis Had Firebottle amp that did a lot of things wonderfully, but it didn't have the low-end slam nor the ability to fill up my listening space.  The current set up for me does a great job of balancing the detail and control of SS while still remaining very engaging and musical with nice rounded edges.  I find the imaging and sound stage to be wide and distinct.  I remember when I first put the 9.0 in the system, I could hear lots of detail in the upper highs that had been missing entirely. 

I'm very happy with my match.  I know that Dan runs these tube pre's with SS amps...the Modwright KWA series amps are solid state. 

fado

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Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #2 on: 16 Jul 2019, 11:20 pm »
Modwright LS100 preamp with Modwright KWA 150SE amp. Never tried the 9.0.

kmmd

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Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #3 on: 17 Jul 2019, 01:32 am »
I like the combo of a tubed preamp with a SS amp.  I started with the SWL 9.0 and then moved to the LS36.5.  Both were mated to Bryston 7B SST’s and then the KWA 150SE.  I’m biamping however with the KWA for the mids / highs and the Bryston’s for the lows. 

I now have a VAC Signature MkIIa SE pre, and the KWA150SE mates very well.  A VAC Signature 200iQ is sure tempting though. ;)

Yomaha

Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #4 on: 17 Jul 2019, 02:36 pm »
kmmd,   

What were your impressions going from 9.0 to 36.5? 

kmmd

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Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #5 on: 17 Jul 2019, 04:03 pm »
Yomaha,

The upgrade to the 36.5 was a significant improvement over the 9.0.  You gain a greater sense of space, weight, body, airiness, attack and decay of the music being played.  Both are excellent preamps for the money, and Dan is the best in the business with respect to customer service.  Tube rolling also helps to fine tune the sound to your liking, and some tubes will impart warmth, improve imaging, space and 3-dimensionality.

Regarding tubes, I loved a pair of Tung Sol 5687's with the 9.0.  I managed to buy a pair of matched Kuhl Tube Tung Sol 5687's from Brenden, and those were a step up.  I sold them not long after I upgraded to the 36.5.  I used a metal base Philips GZ34 and Reflektor 6H30DP-DR's for the 36.5.  Of course I have the Kuhl Tube 6H30 super tubes as well.  Amazing.

IME, the best upgrades are to the components dealing with low level signals (DAC's, or other source, and preamps).  While the amps and speakers are also important, they don't portray what they don't receive.  Loss of information from the DAC will never be preamplified and so on.

jeffjazz

Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #6 on: 17 Jul 2019, 05:32 pm »
I had the SWL 9.0 with Pass Labs X150.
Still have the amp, and I use a Supratek preamp with it. It uses 6SN7 tubes. Different tone to the Modwright.
But the Modwright is an excellent preamp and mates well with the Pass. I compared the two preamps before selling the Modwright.  It actually sounded better in certain respects until I did a cap upgrade in the Supratek.
I can do more tube rolling on the Supratek to alter tone. Helps when making equipment changes. 6SN7 has a bigger sound.
My Modwright had the upgraded caps but not the Tube rectified power supply. It was a very clear detailed and dynamic sound, not warm but not anemic either.
Hope that helps.

Yomaha

Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #7 on: 19 Jul 2019, 07:10 pm »
Yomaha,

The upgrade to the 36.5 was a significant improvement over the 9.0.  You gain a greater sense of space, weight, body, airiness, attack and decay of the music being played.  Both are excellent preamps for the money, and Dan is the best in the business with respect to customer service.  Tube rolling also helps to fine tune the sound to your liking, and some tubes will impart warmth, improve imaging, space and 3-dimensionality.

Regarding tubes, I loved a pair of Tung Sol 5687's with the 9.0.  I managed to buy a pair of matched Kuhl Tube Tung Sol 5687's from Brenden, and those were a step up.  I sold them not long after I upgraded to the 36.5.  I used a metal base Philips GZ34 and Reflektor 6H30DP-DR's for the 36.5.  Of course I have the Kuhl Tube 6H30 super tubes as well.  Amazing.

IME, the best upgrades are to the components dealing with low level signals (DAC's, or other source, and preamps).  While the amps and speakers are also important, they don't portray what they don't receive.  Loss of information from the DAC will never be preamplified and so on.

Thx for the detailed response!

Sonance84

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Re: Who uses an SWL 9.0 (any version) with solid state amps?
« Reply #8 on: 13 Aug 2019, 01:41 am »
Well, I ordered an Anniversary Edition SWL 9.0 w/ optional phono. It will ship out next Monday, and I already have a line on a pair of red-tip Tung-Sol 5687's. I can't wait to compare it to the Threshold FET one. I know the output impedance of the Anniversary Edition is a bit higher than the Signature Edition (800 vs 600 ohm), but it should still pair well with the X150.