Jump to content
The Klipsch Audio Community
Sign in to follow this  
gottajam

Newb To Tubes

Recommended Posts

Over the past couple years I have been becoming interested in tube gear. I have never owned tube gear but am curious about it. So I have been lurking several places trying to get ideas about what I might find more desirable between the different types (push-pull / triode / etc). Unfortunately I do not know squat about any of it and do not know anybody that has any tube gear.

 

Well it has been gnawing at me for quite a while now. I had a couple ideas in mind though. I want to try an integrated so I do not get too deep into it and find that I do not like tube stuff. I was thinking I might try something from this list:

 

Audio Research

Cary

Primaluna

Rogue

 

Well I broke down and bought a used Primaluna Dialogue 2 off A-gon. I has KT88 installed. Part of my curiosity involved being able to tube roll. So I am going to check out the Primaluna as is for a while. Later I am sure I will try out some other tubes. I seem to see the EL34s mentioned quite a bit for their sonic warmth and midrange.

 

This will be paired with Klipsch P17B and a CD player. This is not my main stereo and will be a very leisurely learning experience. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm sure you will have a lot of fun playing with the amp!  What's nice is that when you try other tubes you don't have to deal with biasing them yourself.  The auto-bias feature gives the convenience that single ended users enjoy.  

 

As to EL34s providing a great midrange and warmth, it is totally circuit dependent.  In one amp they may be outstanding, and in another they may not be good at all.  So, it's going to be a matter of choosing the tubes which provide the sound that you are looking for.

 

 

Maynard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand that even between similar tube types, there are even differences there. Such as an EL34 from one manufacturer sounds different than EL34s from another manufacturer. As mentioned, this is just a backup stereo so I have loads of time to play, I mean research, different tube types. 

 

Looking forward to it. Heck, who knows, I might end up with some cool ARC tube separates! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, gottajam said:

I understand that even between similar tube types, there are even differences there. Such as an EL34 from one manufacturer sounds different than EL34s from another manufacturer. As mentioned, this is just a backup stereo so I have loads of time to play, I mean research, different tube types. 

 

Looking forward to it. Heck, who knows, I might end up with some cool ARC tube separates! 

Oh yes, you are being drawn into the abyss Grasshopper......

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't bother OP... all amplification produces exactly the same electrical pulses.

:P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, gottajam said:

I understand that even between similar tube types, there are even differences there. Such as an EL34 from one manufacturer sounds different than EL34s from another manufacturer. As mentioned, this is just a backup stereo so I have loads of time to play, I mean research, different tube types. 

 

Looking forward to it. Heck, who knows, I might end up with some cool ARC tube separates! 

One EL 34 may have a slight difference than another.  This is not where tube swapping has high yields.  The bigger gain is with changing preamp tubes, or to a totally different power tube like a KT 88 vs and EL 34.  Most tube of the same type operate in a fairly narrow operating range that changing them could just  be a simple bias range adjustment of the current tube.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well the brown truck brought my new toy to the house. First impression, this thing is much heavier than I expected. VERY solidly built. The connectors on the back are nice, high quality connectors (WBT, I think).

 

I have to admit that I am a little intimidated and do not want to screw anything up. I have yet to do any actual "critical" listening. So far I have installed it into the system hooked it all up and turned it on to just make sure that it all works. I already have ordered a set of EL34s to check out when I am ready to "roll". I ordered Mullard EL34s from Upscale Audio who, from what I understand, does a 72 hour burn in on tubes and tries to match them per the tube specs as tested in their facility. 

 

This is going to be a fun project!

 

I will post some pics when I tidy up the installation up a bit.    

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not familiar with your amp but I'm not sure if you can put el34's in place of kt88's. you can usually swap kt100's for 88's or if amp runs on el34's you can switch to 6L6.

check with the manufacturer to see what other tube types are interchangeable without having to do any mods to the amp

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My wife - ever the anti audiophile - said the other day that this thing looks like it is supposed to make grilled cheese sammiches! HA!  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the amplifier designer knew what they were doing it is best to use the type tube it was originally designed for. There are different bias requirements for each tube type. And different wiring requirements sometimes. There are different heater currents for different tubes even if all the other requirements are met. 

 An El34 can be swapped for a 6l6gc if the tube socket is wired to accept both, but the bias range is much different. Maybe the designer allowed enough range of adjustment. The heater current is nearly double in the el34 vs the 6l6. Maybe the design built in enough current capacity ?. 

 Grid load resistors are another variable , a 6l6 or el34 might use 220k but a 6550a or kt88 would be better with 50k. 

 I would stick with what the designer specified for the best performance. 

 Better quality tubes will make a difference, especially if the amplifier is very well designed and other associated components are of very high (revealing) quality. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I audiotioned Heresys with a Prima Luna el34 integrated and it sounded great..... I ve had SS and Tubes over the years and keep coming back to tubes.  I was impressed by that amp.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...