Help in picking out a tube pre?

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ketcham

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #20 on: 23 Jul 2019, 06:33 pm »
I would say a used Vinnie Rossi or Shindo.  Allnic can have a more classic sound depending on the unit design and tube type but otherwise a neutral presentation.

I am a strong proponent of used gear because the transformers age well.

FullRangeMan

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #21 on: 23 Jul 2019, 09:12 pm »
I would say a used Vinnie Rossi or Shindo.  Allnic can have a more classic sound depending on the unit design and tube type but otherwise a neutral presentation.

I am a strong proponent of used gear because the transformers age well.
+1
Other electric components also already have being tested in a used equip, I like 1 year old age.

flavo

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #22 on: 23 Jul 2019, 10:17 pm »
+1 on the dehavilland or this, if you can stretch your budget a bit.         

 https://www.aricaudio.com/products.php?product=SP6SN7LNE

I'm leaning towards the Dehavilland right now. They get great reviews and from I read they might have a little more of the velevety sound I'm trying to hear.
I would definitely consider an Aric product too. He seems to be making some waves as of late.
As a side note, we are practically neighbors. He's about an hour away. I bought one of his first KT88 amps right out of his house a few years ago and just sold it on here last month.

sunnydaze

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #23 on: 23 Jul 2019, 10:18 pm »
I love my YS-Audio Audio Experience Balanced A2 preamplifier. It matches very well with my class D monoblocks. Chui Yat Sang is a good guy and makes some darned nice equipment: http://www.ys-audio.com/ys-audio_eng.htm

Martin

I have owned this same line stage for over 8 years now.  Shockingly good for the $$.     :thumb:
« Last Edit: 24 Jul 2019, 12:42 am by sunnydaze »

flavo

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #24 on: 23 Jul 2019, 10:19 pm »
I would buy a used linear tube audio mz3 - it's really fantastic!

I know they have gotten rave reviews. But that design is a nonal/noval tube design. It says it can be altered to use octals but I don't know enough to feel comfortable with that purchase.
Why do you recommend it?
Thanks!

flavo

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #25 on: 23 Jul 2019, 10:21 pm »
Hi, flavo.

If you were anywhere near to me, I'd happily drive over to your home with my D Sachs Model 2 preamp. It's not the latest version, but it does have Jupiter caps and remote. It's no slouch. Hell, it's fantastic! I've taken it to a couple audio get togethers in the States, to Captainhemo's home, and to a couple get togethers in Taiwan. [My wife is Taiwanese, and we often spend time in Taiwan.] Typical reactions/comments are "This is a $5k to $6k preamp." or "This is every bit as good as an Audio Research preamp."

This past winter I bought a Taiwanese made 6922 preamp for my system there that I had hoped would be as good as my Model 2. I got a really good deal on it. It's good, but it's simply not in the same class.

I'm very definitely a D Sachs fanboy, so keep that in mind.

Good luck with your search, and remember to have fun!

Michael

That's a fantastic offer. I'm only plane hop away  :lol:

flavo

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #26 on: 23 Jul 2019, 10:25 pm »
         Do your self a big favor and check out the tube preamps that Frank van Alstine makes. And their price is right !!!

I was hoping he would have something but I don't see any octal tube pre offerings from him. Did I miss something?

flavo

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #27 on: 23 Jul 2019, 11:25 pm »
http://www.supratek.com.au/
The supratek stuff looks pretty amazing too.
Maybe a Cabernet DHT if I keep saving some pennies?  :o

Carl V

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #28 on: 24 Jul 2019, 12:42 am »
cj has always been known for good quality Tube amps/premaps.
They are also known for "musical sounding", Warm tube sound.
Great resale. great customer care.  Affordable.


My first serious Tube system was PV5 with MV50/52's back around '83

JakeJ

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #29 on: 24 Jul 2019, 01:53 am »
I have owned this same line stage for over 8 years now.  Shockingly good for the $$.     :thumb:
Me three!  I have the A2 Gold version and it definitely is one of my favorite preamps ever.  I want to get the matching phono stage too.  He has some far more expensive designs available as well.

So, gents, what tubes are you running in your A2?  I have a pair of JJ ECC802S gold pin in the inner most positions, NOS RCA 12AU7 from Andy at VTS in the middle positions, and a pair of NOS Amperex 7119 in the outer most positions.

And you?

jmolsberg

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #30 on: 24 Jul 2019, 03:13 am »
I know they have gotten rave reviews. But that design is a nonal/noval tube design. It says it can be altered to use octals but I don't know enough to feel comfortable with that purchase.
Why do you recommend it?
Thanks!

It uses two octal 6sn7/12sn7 for output stage and two noval for the inputs. It's very easy on tubes, meaning longevity. And it ships with very good NOS tubes. The external LPS makes the unit very quiet and volume control is just fantastic. Does not sound overly tubey or solid state sounding - it just sounds wonderfully musical. I carried it to a friends house with a 7k pre and now he owns one of his own.

https://theaudiobeatnik.com/reviewing-the-lta-microzotl-mz3-as-a-stand-alone-preamp/


mhconley

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #31 on: 24 Jul 2019, 03:16 am »
Me three!  I have the A2 Gold version and it definitely is one of my favorite preamps ever.  I want to get the matching phono stage too.  He has some far more expensive designs available as well.

So, gents, what tubes are you running in your A2?  I have a pair of JJ ECC802S gold pin in the inner most positions, NOS RCA 12AU7 from Andy at VTS in the middle positions, and a pair of NOS Amperex 7119 in the outer most positions.

And you?

I have an original version of the A2 that uses 12AT7 tubes. I have NOS RCA 12AT7 in all positions and NOS G.E. JAN 5687WB tubes in mine. I replaced the generic coupling capacitors with Robert Hovland Series SuperCaps. The thing sounds gorgeous to my ears.

Martin

sunnydaze

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #32 on: 24 Jul 2019, 12:42 pm »
I too have the older 12at7 version.  I'd have to pop the lid to know for sure but for 12at7 I think I'm using some NOS RCA Black Plates and Mullards, and late 50s TungSol 5687.  It has the Sonicap upgrade.  I really do need to get some better caps in there.

mhconley

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #33 on: 24 Jul 2019, 01:30 pm »
I have a pair of JJ ECC802S gold pin in the inner most positions, NOS RCA 12AU7 from Andy at VTS in the middle positions.

I think I'm using some NOS RCA Black Plates and Mullards.

My RCAs are black plates, too. So what's the idea behind running different tubes in the inner and outer positions?

Martin

PS: and apologies to the OP for piggybacking on the thread...  :)

sunnydaze

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #34 on: 24 Jul 2019, 02:06 pm »
Not much info out there on this line stage, so I struggled to understand the layout and what each tube does in the circuit.

Tubes are lined up 6 across:

  1        2          3          4           5            6
5687  12au7   12au7   12au7   12au7     5687

(tubes 2 thru 5 are 12at7 in earlier version of the YS Audio / Audio Experience Balanced A2 preamp)

My understanding is that they work in L and R pairs, so 3 pairs.  So the 2 middle ones (tubes 3 and 4) are a L R pair and do the same thing in the circuit and therefore must be a matched pair.  Moving to the outside in each direction, tubes 2 and 5 are a L R pair working together in the circuit and must also be a matched pair, but not necessarily identical to the prior pair.

From this review I learned that the 2 pair of 12au7 do the gain, and the 5687 is the output buffer.

http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0910/ys_audio_audio_experience_a2_se.htm

But this always confused me......
If you check the specs on the mfr website you will see that the XLR outputs give 20 db of gain for both SE and XLR inputs, while the SE outputs give only 4 or 14 db of gain (varies depending on whether SE or XLR inputs are used).
And this is at odds with the review referenced above which says gain is 17db at XLR outputs and 12db at SE outputs.
Anyone have any insight?

I used 2 different pair of 12at7 simply because I didn't have 4 of the same, and I figured (guessed?) it was safe to do so.    :dunno:

My guess is that you can safely use different tube pair combos to shape the sound and achieve different sonic landscapes and synergies.


 

JakeJ

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #35 on: 24 Jul 2019, 04:24 pm »
I got my A2 on USAudioMart and the fellow gave me his history of tube rolling in this preamp and found the 7119 (5687 variant) and the ECC802S (a high quality 12AU7 variant) to be the best sound.  I had some other tubes to try and to my ears the ones he suggested, and the preamp came with, are the best.  And not by a small margin.  I also have the Mundorf cap option so YMMV.

Chui Yat Sang now has the A3 posted to the website and it uses all 6922 tubes.  A completely different animal.  Would like to hear it but I have no plans to "upgrade".

sunnydaze

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #36 on: 24 Jul 2019, 04:28 pm »

....Chui Yat Sang now has the A3 posted to the website and it uses all 6922 tubes.  A completely different animal.  Would like to hear it but I have no plans to "upgrade".

I saw that Jake!  Unfortunately good sounding NOS 6922 are getting super pricey.......and in many circuits they also tend to be noisey.  So I'm not happy he has taken this path.

I'm at the point in my audio journey that I will simply not buy gear using 6922 / 6dj8 tubes.  Just too much hassle.  My JuicyMusic Blueberry Xtreme uses a single 6h30Pi in the line stage -- sounds fantastic with a premium select EH Gold Pin.   45 bux shipped, done for the next 24 mos!    :thumb:

sunnydaze

Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #37 on: 24 Jul 2019, 04:38 pm »
And IIRC Jake, I located that preamp and advised that you purchase it........still awaiting my commission!      :rotflmao:

Escott1377

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #38 on: 10 Aug 2019, 01:30 pm »
Ironically, this just popped up :)

https://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=165060.msg1754859#new

No problem in my bi amp set up also paired with 2 x 500 W subs.

Take a chance, looks like a great build as well!

DelsFan

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Re: Help in picking out a tube pre?
« Reply #39 on: 11 Aug 2019, 11:58 pm »
I guess I'm resurrecting an old thread, but my question is pretty much the same, or at least on the same topic. 

I was reading about a integrated amplifier that uses the 6dJ8 tubes in its voltage amplifier stage (in the preamp section?); the article talked about the difference between the 6DJ8 (and I assume the 6922s would behave in a similar fashion) and the 12AX7 tubes.  It suggested:
The 12AX7 is a high-mu, low transconductance, and efficient voltage amplifier, which "tends to generalize, simplify, and skip or jump over small-scale signal information."
The 6DJ8 is medium-mu, high transconductance, nine-pin, twin-triode tube; "think of tube mu as a voltage-in/voltage-out ratio, and of transconductance as a tube's sensitivity to small-scale signal fluctuations.  At 11,000 micromhos the transconductance of a 6DJ8  is almost 10 times that of the 12AX7 (1200–1600 micromhos), and, to my ears, transmits 10 times more texture and inner detail."

If I'm looking at spending $4K to $10K on a SS amp and tube-based preamp combo, or a tube-based (or hybrid) integrated amp (so, high $$ and hopefully high-end gear), it seems a design using a medium-mu tube would be more articulate.  I'd appreciate any additional insight as to what a medium-mu tube does for me.  OR, as was stated earlier, are there so many different preamp designs that it is hard to suggest an amplifier using medium-mu tubes would always sound... in any certain way... compared to one utilizing high-mu tubes?  I'm assuming if this were the case, no "high-end" preamp or integrated amp would utilize a high-mu tube (and I'm assuming that isn't the case).

I did read a bit about Roger Modjeski and some of his preamps utilizing the 6922 tube(s); however, according to the Music Reference web site they/he only make two versions of a tube-based power amplifier now...