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Tube amp and pre or Tube integrated recommendations for Cornwall 1s


ScottR
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I can highly recommend the Juicy Music pCAT amplifiers.  The trouble is they are no longer made and difficult to find for sale.  They will play plenty loud with Cornwalls.  Juicy music also has some nice matching preamps, but likewise would only be available used.  Of the JM products, the pCATs are my favorite.

 

If you don't need extreme volume levels, Single Ended Triodes (SETs) can also be very nice and should also be looked at if high volume isn't a requirement.  I found that a 2A3 SET amp satisfied my volume levels for about 98% of my listening with Khorns.  If you don't spend all your budget and have similar listening habits as me, you can allocate some of it for another amp to cover that additional 2%.

 

I've also been happy with the Cary gear that I have owned.

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22 hours ago, JMON said:

I can highly recommend the Juicy Music pCAT amplifiers.  The trouble is they are no longer made and difficult to find for sale.  They will play plenty loud with Cornwalls.  Juicy music also has some nice matching preamps, but likewise would only be available used.  Of the JM products, the pCATs are my favorite.

 

If you don't need extreme volume levels, Single Ended Triodes (SETs) can also be very nice and should also be looked at if high volume isn't a requirement.  I found that a 2A3 SET amp satisfied my volume levels for about 98% of my listening with Khorns.  If you don't spend all your budget and have similar listening habits as me, you can allocate some of it for another amp to cover that additional 2%.

 

I've also been happy with the Cary gear that I have owned.

I am pretty sold on tubes. None of the SS gear I've heard is doing it for me. I'm interested in going to a SET amp or a SEP amp but am worried about speakers. If go that route I'd only be able to run real efficient horn speakers. I can't wait to get my Cornwalls but if I wanted to try the new Tannoy classic line I'd be out of luck. I read the new Ardens will only be 91db. Anyone try running low power tube amps on something other than Klipsch?

 

And has anyone heard of a release date for the Forte 3?

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On 2/20/2017 at 8:48 PM, Rjk1972 said:

Lots of great gear recommended. I had written a nice long post but I guess I messed up some how. 

 

Anyways. I would just add a couple of things. I like my tube gear to have great tone and what I consider to be a nice tube like sound. Personally I found all the Audio Research gear I've heard in the last 20 years to be on the analytical side of the scale. I'd put Shindo on the other side, the warm, great tone side. I found Decware to be on the analytical side not to far from Audio Research gear. Leben I'd put on the Shindo side. CJ gear is just to fuzzy for me but I haven't heard any of there stuff in the last 10 years. Line Magnetic, despite being from China, pretty nice gear. Great build quality and sound. My only problem with them is that they seem to always be having some grey market/counterfeit/dealers not knowing what tubes are currently coming in there amps problems. Leben gear I just love. It's fantastic I've heard the CS300, CS600, the rs660p, the RS30eq, and their full function preamp. Just amazing gear, but really pricey.

 

I read your speaker thread. You'll love those Cornwalls. I think we have pretty similar tastes. I'm also anxiously awaiting Forte 3 but either way I will never be parting with my 85 Cornwalls. I wouldn't do much to mod those Cornwalls either. Just replace the caps in the crossovers with some good ones. I'm going to redo mine with Jupiter Flat Stacks this summer when work slows down. 

Your the second persons that's said that about Decware to me. I'm adding Audio Research to my list of gear I'm going to listen to. It would be nice to buy an amp made in the U.S. but I definitely am not looking for solid state sound.

 

I've read the some about the counterfeit gear and parts coming out of China and about Line Magnetics grey market problems. Never read anything about tube confusion and dealers though. The gear does look nice. I'm given two of their amps a listen too but will probably pass for those reasons. 

 

I'm going to pick up the Cornwalls now. Can't wait to get them set up.

 

I see your using the Belden and Duelunde cables that are recommended by Jeff Day and others. What do you think? I am not really a cable guy but that is pretty affordable wire. 

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I'm skipping over most of this thread so apologies to  everybody, but you should lose the Cornwalls and  go fully horn loaded.  At moderate levels get a used Khorn ($2k) a rebuilt (properly) Scott 299 Fisher 400 or 500) for about a K, with a K in reserve for fidllin around with the xovers. 

 

I spent a decade with Cornwalls and for modest money used Khorns , although  a little less tolerant of source materials (the music you are playing at any given time), give a sonic bang for the buck that can't be beat.

 

Listen for awhile, and change in and out from there.

 

Music, and sonic reproduction is a bit of journey.  You can only short-circuit that learning path so far.  What can you lose?  the worse that happens is you are  sitting around listening to music, and wondering how to make it better, while knowing you are pretty much all the way there already.

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On 2/23/2017 at 6:28 PM, ScottR said:

So what are you going to end up doing if you don't mind my asking?

I'll send it back to Matt when work slows down and I get a chance or might just fix it myself. Right now is the busiest part of the year for me at my job. It doesn't let up till April sadly.

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On 2/24/2017 at 10:41 AM, ScottR said:

Your the second persons that's said that about Decware to me. I'm adding Audio Research to my list of gear I'm going to listen to. It would be nice to buy an amp made in the U.S. but I definitely am not looking for solid state sound.

 

I've read the some about the counterfeit gear and parts coming out of China and about Line Magnetics grey market problems. Never read anything about tube confusion and dealers though. The gear does look nice. I'm given two of their amps a listen too but will probably pass for those reasons. 

 

I'm going to pick up the Cornwalls now. Can't wait to get them set up.

 

I see your using the Belden and Duelunde cables that are recommended by Jeff Day and others. What do you think? I am not really a cable guy but that is pretty affordable wire. 

I'm not saying Decware and ARC are bad, just too sterile for me. Just for reference I really like the sound of my Fisher 500c. It's been my go-to for the last 3 years. She really never disappoints.

 

If you checkout the Steve Hoffman forums and audiokarma youll find lots of info about Line Magnetic. I think their amps sound great.

 

I'm not a big believer in cables myself. I like Belden, Mogami, and recently Duelund speaker cable. The Belden and Duelund really do work well together. Personally I've not heard anything to make me believe expensive speaker cable gives you anything more than a slightly different colorations. 

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On 2/26/2017 at 7:36 PM, Rjk1972 said:

I'm not saying Decware and ARC are bad, just too sterile for me. Just for reference I really like the sound of my Fisher 500c. It's been my go-to for the last 3 years. She really never disappoints.

 

If you checkout the Steve Hoffman forums and audiokarma youll find lots of info about Line Magnetic. I think their amps sound great.

 

I'm not a big believer in cables myself. I like Belden, Mogami, and recently Duelund speaker cable. The Belden and Duelund really do work well together. Personally I've not heard anything to make me believe expensive speaker cable gives you anything more than a slightly different colorations. 

I realized I am only about a three hour drive from you on my trip into the city. I see you've got some nice gear including a Fisher 500c restored by NOS Valves.

 

Gave lots of gear a listen. I think I've narrowed it down to Leben, Line Magnetic, or possibly Toolshed Amps. Luxman integrateds are quite nice too. The Leben CS600 was fantastic. Lots of tube goodness and some solid bass and power. I was really not impressed with the Audio Research gear. I agree the are almost solid state sounding.

 

@Rjk1972 you have a PM

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For under a grand (all redone from NOS Valves), and a natural with your name are the late great HH Scott tube amps - from the model 222, 233 and the powerful 299's.  Right now listening to a remastered Peter Gunn theme by Mancini with my Scott 299C and Cornscala's.  The transformers in the Scott's have to be seen to be believed. Sound is heavenly!!!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey everybody, didn't want to start a separate topic for my question so posting here:

Will Leben CS-300xs be enough to drive my Cornwalls III in a 20 by 20 ft room ? 99% listening to vinyl, nothing extreme/heavy or very loud, but still a bit concerned whether this little guy can handle a room of such size.

 

p.s. auditioning is not possible unfortunately since I am looking at a very good second hand deal and should i decide to go with it, need to pick it up this Friday.

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I could be mistaken, remember Carl was shakin' up a storm, but I believe Thaddeus brought one of Maynard's amps to Hope last year and played it in rotation with several others. Jimbo brought a Mc, I brought a Dennis Had and I think an HK made a showing as well. 


Ok, now putting names with equipment, that's the way to remember.

Sent from my SM-N900V using Tapatalk

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  • 1 month later...

Hello! Have you decided on an amp? 

I have some experience with more contemporary midline tube amps. I drove my 98db Lore with the 3 watt Ampsandsound Mogwai for a time. Good entry level tube amp with plenty of opportunities for tube rolling. I've driven same speakers with a  Primaluna Prologue premium integrated too. I've now got a pair of Forte I here and Matt from ToolShed is building me an amp. Hope to have everything running in several weeks.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/21/2017 at 6:36 PM, Supernaskov said:

Hey everybody, didn't want to start a separate topic for my question so posting here:

Will Leben CS-300xs be enough to drive my Cornwalls III in a 20 by 20 ft room ? 99% listening to vinyl, nothing extreme/heavy or very loud, but still a bit concerned whether this little guy can handle a room of such size.

 

p.s. auditioning is not possible unfortunately since I am looking at a very good second hand deal and should i decide to go with it, need to pick it up this Friday.

Totally enough. That's a great little amp. Congratulations. What do you think of it?

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  • 5 weeks later...

look into audio space. I have the as3i (el34) integrated (absolute magic with jazz) upgrading stock tubes & power cord makes huge difference. my buddy has the kt88 version & loves it. they both sound fantastic with cornwalls. 

there's no built in phono stage but I'm a huge proponent of seperate components. you don't need a preamp! 

amp, power cord and upgrading tubes should only run you 2k. lots left over for a phono stage, interconnects & speaker cable or to modify your cornwalls (alk crossover & fastrac mid horn)

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On 6/19/2017 at 3:18 PM, richieb said:

A bit off target and might be moved to the SS thread but after acquiring a couple Nelson Pass Class A, solid state, single ended designs I have three various tube amps that are becoming lonelier by the day. 

Do what I do...SS for the summer and tubes for the winter. :emotion-21:

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