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KT88

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  1. Sorry for kidnapping your thread again, Flevoman. It is not meant so. It shows only that many different parts can influence the sound beside the choice of tubes.
  2. May be it depends also on the circuit. My old Quad amps 34 and 306 use carbon film resistors by the factory simply because it was cheaper 35 years ago. I had to replace some resistors to change the input sensitivity. I first used Vishay metal film types and I was really shocked how harsh the sound became, at least regarding this amps. Then I went back to carbon film and the full smoothness was immediately coming back. It may all depend on the kind of added distortion. Metal film types will measure „better“ and perhaps it is the added first and second harmonic distortion with the carbon film which pleases me.
  3. I can underwrite what you say very much in every aspect. BTW which resistors do you like more, CC or MF types regarding your ST70? Edit: Sorry I reread your post, so now you are committed with CF types? So am I when I replaced some resistors in a pre amp I was in the end happy to use KOA SPR, also carbon film types. To come back to this thread, it can really be the case that e.g. the choice of resistors makes a bigger difference than another power tube or another brand of a power tube.
  4. I agree with you. In addition to the title of the thread, we are now moving to the level of amplifier circuits. This is a very important step. The circuit is the most important basis for everything else. On the one hand, the differences in principle, whereby circuit concepts such as Class A or A/B can be optimised specifically in each case. The same applies to push pull vs. single ended. It also applies to the amount of feedback. And once you have agreed on a basic concept then it can matter which tube is best suited to which circuit concept. Not coincidentally, it is often the case that historically certain types of tubes fit very well to the respective favoured circuits of their era. Only the overall package of circuit and tube type can be seriously judged. And then there are these prejudices, Class A sounds better than Class A/B...do people believe that because Class A is "first class" and when a B appears it is only "second class"? Of course not. The designation is just a historical list of when something was invented. (and of course it describes a different circuit technology*). Then there is the prejudice that negative feedback could be a poor remedy and that a "noble true" amp does not need that. Then there is the prejudice that push pull is impure and that you only need it as a "compromise" if you want more than 8 watts of power. Of course, this is all complete nonsense. Captainbeefheart once plausibly explained that a 45 tube, for example, has a lot of "built-in" feedback due to its design and that this is one of the reasons why it sounds so good in a SET even if it has no feedback loop in the circuit. In the end, the overall package of the amp also has to be chosen for a certain a speaker regarding impedance and sensitivity. I would just like to repeat what I said in another post...give the amp a chance to be technically "right" and then subjective taste will kick in. And it should because the hobby is all about our enjoyment and fun. But let's be careful when one concept is elevated above another on a level of marketing slogans. I am only a layman but I would guess that I prefer a tube amp that was built from the ground up for one type of tube than one that can be reconfigured for three types of tubes, e.g. because the transformers are also tuned for one type at best and so is the feedback. *Very roughly simplified (because I don't know any better myself:) others may correct me… With Class A, the tube or transistor is constantly supplied with the greatest possible current energy, regardless of whether you need the energy completely at a certain point in time or not. Therefore the heat in a sand amp Class A. Class A "can" lead to more "serenity" and the positive feeling of „torque“ in the sound like a V8 engine which must not struggle to move the car. With Class B, the DC energy of the power supply is supplied depending on the energy demand, i.e. less DC energy is demanded from the power supply when the music is quiet. This means, however, that the power supply must be very well integrated into a circuit because with Class B it works in time with the music and no longer statically supplies maximum power as with Class A. The advantage of Class B is the much lower wear and the much lower power consumption. Class A/B is something like a combination of both worlds. Regarding quietly played music it runs always Class A and it delivers this relaxing and pleasantly smooth and distortion free fundamental frame. Only when playing loud (using horns very loud) the circuit switches so that in addition Class B comes into play. But the low SPL is always very Class A which is also important when a loud signal „appears“ from nothing. In other words the subtle parts of a loud instrument which can give the impression of distortion keep clean.
  5. I feel a point where commitment to this beautiful hobby and music is reaching certain limits of technical understanding. Please don't misunderstand, this is not meant to be an offense, but to be honest I mean it as a protection, so that not too much money is spent on the basis and belief of half-knowledge and hearsay. I respect any kind of personal taste and personal choice, philosophically it must even go so far that I respect any attitude, so even those who may enjoy that perhaps even knowing explanations are absolutely undesirable. For example, if someone has a hard job and has to make many decisions, then the hifi hobby should be exactly a soothing balance where you do not want and need to know and understand everything exactly, but you want to deal on the other hand gladly with the technology and the stories about it. I think, however, if the interest, for example, about the differences of circuits (A, AB, B etc) is meant seriously then I would be happy if @captainbeefheart comments something about it because he is a real top expert in this field with an experience and knowledge and a background as a jazz guitarist as well who also feels the music and not only understands the tubes.
  6. Here we share the same listening impression. And how you describe the difference I find very autehtic. It's not the instantaneous big black/white contrast. It's subtle but on long term listening a clear emotional difference. Without pre amp I might be initially delighted by some more resolution, but it happens that the disadvantages soon come to the fore. The timbres are not really right, e.g. a grand piano in the range from C2 to C4 sounds somehow more potted. It's as if the single note has less guidance authority and control. And in terms of the whole piece of music, there is often a lack of tension in the rhythmic timing, plus less control over what is happening in the musical structure and somehow "no meat". All these impressions turned into positive, that's what the pre amp does for me.
  7. You can perfectly match your speakers to your room. But what if a very beautiful musical recording sounds technically thin and tinny? For me it's not about sound controls to hide a wrong speaker positioning but that I want to compensate for the shortcomings of some recordings. Some pre amps are also designed so that the tone controls are not in the signal path when they are set to zero, for example, the Mcintosh C22CE. With other pre amps this is not the case e.g. with my Quad 34, but it doesn't bother me because I like its sound. It's also a very subjective thing. In a British forum, the Quad 34 was discussed. A retired sound engineer who worked at Abbey Road Studios for 30 years loves his Quad 34 because he says that the highest resolution can sometimes be very tiring. He prefers (as do I) a pleasing sound. This is far from dull and cloudy sounding. BTW The 34's tone control is as simple as it is ingenious for balancing recordings. Have a look at the Tilt control and the corresponding graph. https://www.kenrockwell.com/audio/quad/34-preamplifier.htm#tone
  8. So do you know just know which integrated it will be? And even if not it is a very good and safe decision to go the way of an integrated.
  9. Thanks for the info, Flevoman. I wanted to make the point that in my experience a pre amp is an indispensable requirement. There are many threads about this here in the forum and elsewhere and I am of the opinion that a power amp never sounds good when it is driven directly from a source. I don't want to hijack the thread but this is an important point because it has a lot to do with your decision. I don't want to discuss whether one needs a pre amp but I say yes and absolutely. I go one step further, the choice of pre amp is ultimately the main determinant of the tonal character of the whole system. It should not be skimped on. That doesn't mean that it has to be extraordinarily expensive, but it must be considered appropriately in its quality...in coordination with the device class of the power amplifier. First of all it should fit well "electrically". For example, I consider my Mcintosh C22CE to be one of the best sounding pre amps I know. It was intended by the factory to be used with any MC275 (Mk4 in my case). It's a very good electrical match. This is especially true for the interaction of the output impedance of the pre and the input impedance of the power amp. Although the C22CE sounds so fantastic, it is not usable with my Mcintosh MC2102. This power amp has an input impedance of "only" 20K Ohm....as many modern power amps have. Here the C22CE sound thin and unweighted, so we are talking about a fundamentally electrically "wrong" sound, we are not talking about sound preferences. And that is a very important difference. I see that your NAD pre amp has an output impedance of 220 Ω. This is very good and should be compatible with many power amps. But if you want a sound improvement for your system, then the question of which power tubes sound which way would only be secondary for me. Certainly it makes a difference, but other issues are more important in my opinion. I bet that a really good pre amp (if it is electrically suitable re it´s output impedance) influences the sound more than the choice of another tube power amp. In the end, you have completely different power amps, but they all sound (more or less) the same in the way that they are tinted and fed by the sound of the NAD pre amp (or any other pre amp...) in a pleasing or less pleasing way. I'm not saying the NAD isn't good, but whether it's the best choice to compete with such precious tubes and devices like 300B, 45, KT150 etc. I would doubt it. The question is whether you buy a really good (tube) pre amp first or whether you buy a pre amp together with the power amp of your choice . Personally, I would buy an electrically compatible (with many power amps) good pre amp first. I totally agree that it should have a tone control. You will be surprised what your Dynaco ST70 power amp can do. Or a good integrated tube amp with a real built-in preamp...maybe even hybrid. For example, Mcintosh (among other manufacturers) knows how important the fingerprint of the pre amp is. That's why they have integrated amps these days where they reverse the philosophy and the pre amp section is tube but the power amp is sand. Here is one model which even has a good analogue tone control. And you would be sure not to make any mistakes in the composition when everything comes from a single source. https://www.mcintoshlabs.com/products/integrated-amplifiers/MA352 This is really only meant to be an example, I am not married to Mcintosh.
  10. Before I can give my two cent to your topic…I do not know the Dynaco ST 70. I have seen pics in the web of the newer version and I see two pots for the left and right channel. How do you use your ST70? Do you use a pre amp beforehand or do you go straight from your source (CD player, streamer or whatsever? Are the pots of the ST 70 meant to be just a gain adjustment or does this amp has a genuine integrated pre section?
  11. This Kölsch pub in the link below is one of the oldest in Cologne, it was a horse changing station and post station centuries ago, it's around the corner from me, 110 meters. I don't need a car for that. With beautiful beer garden and very good traditional Cologne dishes. https://www.marienbild.de/ BTW I like the American Micro Brewery scene a lot. I had some brewery tours in 2017, and I noticed that from Kentucky to Oregon the newer micro brewery beer menus start almost everywhere with „Kolsch“ as the lightest variant and which indeed is our Cologne beer, „Kölsch“. Now your nice breweries offer it from coast to coast which is really funny because in Germany you get the genuine Kölsch only within a radius of 30 kilometers at all.
  12. It's a pitty I don't have a meeting in my listening room with a buddy earlier than the end of June. He has a PowerNode of the latest generation, the Class D power amplifier section is the same as in a new generation NAD amp, I forgot the type but both brands belong to the same group. Until now I never have heard a Class D amp. I have the new Node streamer since July 21 and before that the Node 2i. I also liked the older one, it is a sympathetic and not too cold sound but still with good resolution. The new Node (without additional digits) keeps the nice basic tone, but everything is a whole class better in resolution and in the energy of the sound image. It is yes a new chip as DAC and especially with Tidal MQA it is much better still than with the older Node 2i. A bargain I would say. When my buddy brings his PowerNode we'll do a nice listening session with my 1977 LaScalas. Then we'll compare: PowerNode vs. C22CE with MC275 Mk4 vs. EAR 864 with MC 2102 vs. Quad 34 with Quad 306 (with renewed electrolytic capacitors, my favorite amp combi at the moment). Speakers: Klipsch Lascala 1974 (restored last year with new Atlas diaphragm, remagnetized K77 Alnico, new polyester caps and freshly sealed bass cabinet). Stirling Broadcast LS3/6 Tannoy Canterbury 15" from 1993 KEF LS50 from my buddy I will report back if it is of interest.
  13. It will take some weeks but I will just send you a message when all is installed, You are welcome to be my guest👍😀 Then we can see if Quad sounds better to your likes or Mcintosh together with the Jubilees, and also if a Cabernet fits better to the hornspeakers sound or a Syrah.🤠
  14. Thanks a lot, Edgar. I will see if I get those (or similar) in Germany, when I order from Mouser which I frequently do I have free shipping from 50€ w/o VAT amount on. I will have a look at them. 10 minutes later, Mouser do not offer them, Edcors itself do not ship to Germany. Anyway it is a good move to have a look for such a kind of transformer.
  15. Thanks Marvel, I know, but this way I spend at least 1K to get four transformers or even more. I would do so as a last choice if anything else fails.
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