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Posts posted by Cantilope

  1. 17 hours ago, codewritinfool said:

    Yer killin’ me, Joe. Aleph-J is one of my in-the-works projects.


    I like to think the Aleph J is like the Ford F-150 of amps, does everything well and if you only had one class A... that'd be a good one and you'll be very pleased. The others are more of a different flavor and are striving for more of a tubeish sound. The Aleph J is a good old well designed voltage source class A amp. I also like the option of balanced inputs with that build, and I used my Aleph Js ( I built a pair) on my Jubilees and they sounded fantastic.


    I like the Aleph J better than my McIntosh MC2205 if that helps. These designs are all in a class all of their own.



    • Like 1

  2. Rich, I don't know what the BA-2 will put out. If I recall you can adjust the bias higher and higher and with more heatsink the more wattage you get. I also used the burning amp gain stage, which I recall is similar to the gain stage that is in the VFET. I believe that is why Wdecho suggested I try it, as I liked the VFET so much. I think the BA puts out more power than the VFET, but I am not so good at remembering the numbers (Wdecho was better at that than I, and I never could have done it without him). I remember cranking my bias pretty high, way more than 250mv, hell its called the burning amp for a reason and I am a fearless amp builder...


    As far as side by side, I have never compared them head to head, but I suspect they are both very similar. Something to note, is the gain stage on the BA has the ability to adjust the second harmonic, which adds the tube sound or takes it away. Although I have the tools and Wdecho gave me a tutorial, I haven't yet adjusted this. What you really should do, is build the BA! They are both world class amps and the BA is a cake walk compared to the VFET.


    My order of preference:

    SIT-2 (not DIY)



    M2 (had both DIY and NP no I could not tell the difference)

    AlephJ (which doesn't deserve to be on the bottom of any list)



  3. I too built a VFET and it is my most favorite that I have built to date. I have never posted pictures on this site, but here are a few. A couple of things to note on my build is that I went dual mono, meaning two separate internal power supplies, two transformers and 4 rectifiers, although it does share one on/off switch it's mono from there. This thing is a beast and weighs in at 42#.




    You can see how it compares to the single power supply of the Burning Amp build.





    • Like 3

  4. My Rosewood Belles are factory. That tag should say BK-RL, looks like BK-WO from what I see, so those are re-veneered. They are not MINT, at least what I understand that to mean. Beautiful none the less... might try that trick yourself. Find a beat up pair and have them professionally veneered. They’ll mean even more to you once they are done.

  5. On 2/2/2018 at 1:57 PM, Khornukopia said:


    Yes he does. I don't have anything to contribute to the DIY amp threads, but do enjoy reading them.


    I think that you ought to try a build. You'll never go back...


  6. Since I don't do A/B testing, I really try and not give my opinions. I feel they are tainted...


    However, with that, I'd say the M2 has more tube characteristics, where as the BA-3 is just a really clean SS amp. The M2 I believe is self-biasing where as the BA-3 is not. I was able to dial the bias a bit higher because I use a large case and large heatsinks on the BA-3 (twice the voltage as the amount in the build guide). The BA-3 also has a POT that allows you to dial in the amount of distortion with a turn. I have not messed with this feature yet. There is a video on Youtube by 6L6 that shows the results of this pot, and that you can introduce as much disortion as you like. Basically going from a sterile clean amp to something that has just a bit of the right kind of distortion. This is a very cool feature.


    The M2 is much simpler build and set up and is a great "beginner"amp, but I suspect that the adjustability of the BA-3 makes it so I can tailor the sound to my needs, and that over time might give it the edge. The M2 is not as quiet as the BA-3 when there is no signal.


    As far as the F7 that I removed, not one of my favorites, probably won't be used again, not as good as some of the others I have.


    I hope this helps... 

    • Like 1

  7. I was working on an amp not too long ago. A DIY M2 First Watt Clone. I pulled the working board loose from the heat sinks to replace the input wires. When I put the board back I missed tightening one of the mosfets down by just a half a turn and let out the magic smoke.


    Now I check 5 times, to make sure I seat those mosfets. Mistakes are great learning oppertunites.



    • Like 1

  8. So here we are, a BA-2. Looks like it took me about 4 hours to change that out. (sorry the ba-2 boards have no flashy LEDs...) I need to bias these up as it is the first time. I'll throw it on the LaScalas tomorrow and give it a listen.  I need a reeb.


    • Like 1

  9. Making some changes to my amplification today and I wanted to share with you my process. For many years I purchased amplifiers infrequently over the years as they were rather expensive. Mainly I stuck to used gear as many of us do. One of these used amplifiers the First Watt M2 was so good that I decided I needed multiples of them to run bi-amp on my Jubilees. Talk about getting expensive, multiples! On this site I met William who convinced me that I should learn to build my own. So what you are seeing here is about 2 years of his tutelage and a skill I am rather new at. I watched a few military soldering training videos I found on Youtube and bought a an iron. Hopefully you can see the value in the education and ability to simply change a board and get a totally new personality. Maybe you'll like maybe not, but much like a car model as a kid it was a blast to build and test. So here we go...


    In this photo you can see my case. This is a universal case, with a universal Power Supply form DIY Audio, and a transformer sized for many First Watt applications. I have just got done removing the F7 boards I have been running as of late. Took about 5 minutes.




    In this Photo you can see my options. I have a F1, F3, Aleph J, M2, BA-2, or the F7s I just removed. I'll be choosing the BA-2 as I have not heard those yet, but hopefully you can see how really easy it is to change these boards and why for a just a few hundred bucks you can really explore what you like in SS amplification. Almost as easy as tube rolling...



    I'll post up one more once I have her up and running with the BA-2 boards (red ones) installed.



    • Like 1

  10. 21 hours ago, avguytx said:

    These are what I used and just made the adjustments based on the wood thickness.  Both of these have been out there for awhile now, too.  I also used a program called MaxCut v2 that laid out all the cuts for the 3 sheets of Baltic Birch I used.


    Belle K510.pdf

    I am glad this has been useful and that you were able to use it. Did you find any errors or omissions? I can update them if you did.



  11. So I have belles, La scalas and CWs, I guess I am reading that I need 3 pairs of these drivers, and another set for the KLFs? Four pair of these... are they really worth it? I still run the stock K-77s as well, maybe it's time for some changes. I spent $750 on one TAD and feel it was totally worth it.  Push me over the edge...



  12. 21 hours ago, wvu80 said:

    Would you care to describe a bit more what we are looking at with regards to your amps?  I'm not sure what your per-procsessor is.  I see a rack in the left rear, a tube amp on the left side Belle and I'm not sure what is on the right side Belle.


    Dave, I use the Oppo as a pre/pro (on the right). It does my input switching and volume control, plus it processes all my SACD, MP4, DVD, and Blu-ray content from the network. The oppo's 8 outputs are divided with the R,L,C and LFE going into the Xilica and the surround feeding directly into the Crown d75As. I use the Oppo level adjustments and delay for the four rear channels. The Xilica outs go into the 6 Channel amp which are coupled directly to the drivers of the jubes and the MEH.


    The 6 channel amp is built into the pull out drawer. You can read about my 6 channel AMP here:


    As far as what is seen in the photo, you are correct that is a SSE Tube amp (on the left) that I built that I use for a conversation piece. The stack in the corner is my stable of First Watt Clones, I swap amps around from time to time and store them here. None of these are in service as of now. I moved the working stack into my mechanical room, out of site. You can see that below. The furman power switches allow me to turn on 2 channel or HT separately. Not a bad stack for 14 channels...





    • Thanks 1

  13. Finally made some forward progress and captured myself a set of La Scalas for rear/rears. I have cleaned them up, replaced the horn to driver gaskets and replaced the caps in the original AA xovers. I rescued these from a shop that cuts granite and they were pretty grungy, they are much nicer now than they appeared when I picked them up.


    I am glad that I stuck with horn loaded all the way around, although as you can see it took awhile to collect the right parts worth the wait. The conversion from 5.1 to 7.1 has been worthwhile as the extra rears just add that much more immersion into the movies. I also have a pretty deep room they help with that as well. Since this last post I have also replaced the single THT with (2) F20 horn loaded subwoofers. This is what the LS sit upon. I am very happy with the pair of F20s as well. The bass in the room is tremendous but effortless and they blend in very well with the Jube Bass bins. I love, love, love horn loaded bass. I also sit upon a concrete floor so added some bass shakers to the theater seats. These I have come on at the lowest of lows and they add just a but more to the experience but don't add any distortion to the audio.


    So a quick run down of the current gear:


    L/R = 2016 Jubes running from a DIY 6 channel class D amp made from 3 TI TPA3255EVM boards.

    C = 2016 DIY K402 based MEH (ChrisA) w/ (2) 15" Eminence woofers also connects to the EVM boards

    SUR = 1978 Klipsch Belles, ALK xovers, Crown D75A amplifier

    REARSUR = 1978 La Scalas, AA xover, Crown D75A amplifier

    Sub 1&2 = Lil Mike F20, Crown XLS 2502 amplifier

    Bass Shakers = Crown XLS 1000 amplifier

    I use an Oppo 105D for the front end and a Xilica 4080 for xovers, delay, and speaker balance.


    FIY those are audiophile/hospital quality high definition, triple quasi gold plated yellow wing nuts. They give better bass.





    • Like 4

  14. On 12/4/2017 at 5:54 PM, MetropolisLakeOutfitters said:

    Three identical compression drivers on the same plane sounds really good with stuff like that.


    I'll add that I whole heartidly agree 100% with this. So much in-fact, that I spent a year searching for a single TAD to put into my MEH (ultimately having to purchase 2) and built my own box because they are a hair longer than the stock drivers. I also use identical amplification for the big 3 up front. Upstairs, I have a KLF-30/C-7, those three have never imaged like what (3) 402s can do. Insane is a perfect word for it.



  15. I also run a MEH as a center and am in camp #2 with Chris. I am contemplating adding 2 additional rear speakers with a move to 7.1 and am wrestling with horn loaded vs direct radiating. (in a way less critical spot than the center) and I'll likely stick with horn loaded all the way.


    Currently, I run jubes as L and R, a MEH as a center and Belles as rears with dual F20s for subs (not much different that what you'll have). Anyone that has been in my HT has said it is absolutely the best they have ever heard movies, video games, music, whatever... Although more work, absolutely worth it in my humble opinion.

    • Like 1

  16. On 5/13/2017 at 4:20 PM, twk123 said:

    Did you see these KP-3002s for $400?

    No, but now I have... I really don't need these, but I do have a foursome of the KP-4000s in my basement, but I think I have 3 blown radiators and 2 bad drivers (they were free).  They are the big 18"s that go underneath.  I wonder if they'd be worth getting and fixing up the bottoms and matching them up.  I really need these like a hole in the head.  I have about thrown away the KP-4000s... not worth fixing hard to find parts.

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