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jimjimbo

Anyone here have a Dennis Had amp?

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My McIntosh MC225 vs Inspire HotRod vs Inspire 45Fire Bottle comparison. The Inspire 45 Fire Bottle sounds best, then the McIntosh MC225 and last place goes to the Inspire HotRod. MC225 has best bass and the 45 Fire Bottle has best midrange. The sound differences between the amps are very minimal. This is using a pair of 1996 LaScalas with Crites A/4500 Crossovers and CT-120 tweeters.

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14 hours ago, Ceptorman said:

I have a better idea, you two should meet in the middle (my living room) for your comparison :D

I have a better idea....you should come to Hope.  You are two hours closer than I am.....

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5 hours ago, jimjimbo said:

I have a better idea....you should come to Hope.  You are two hours closer than I am.....

I was in Hope....three weeks ago. I was coming home from taking my daughter's belongings to her in Texas, going to college there. I wish I could've stayed for the day, but had to get back home.

 

I had planned on going to the last two pilgrimages, paid the fees, had a room, even had the t shirts, but something came up. I will make it there next year :D

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1 minute ago, Ceptorman said:

I was in Hope....three weeks ago. I was coming home from taking my daughter's belongings to her in Texas, going to college there. I wish I could've stayed for the day, but had to get back home.

 

I had planned on going to the last two pilgrimages, paid the fees, had a room, even had the t shirts, but something came up. I will make it there next year :D

Got the T shirts?  That's half the battle!

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50 minutes ago, jimjimbo said:

Got the T shirts?  That's half the battle!

Yep....got two 60th anniversary ones!

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11 minutes ago, jimjimbo said:

Huh?  60th?  You foolin' with me?

Sorry, 70th!

Still groggy from my procedure earlier today.

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13 minutes ago, Ceptorman said:

Sorry, 70th!

Still groggy from my procedure earlier today.

Hope you had fun!

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On 10/23/2017 at 3:46 PM, pantoramasan said:

I have been reading this thread with great interest. Can anyone give me an idea if Dennis Had’s amp would perform better than say, McIntosh MC30’s pair? I am using the reissue C22 pre amp and have Klipschorn Speakers. I would appreciate any input and am very interested in trying one of his amps if there is a discernible difference. 

My inspire amps sound more life like. Warmer sounding with more realism. The Mcintosh 202 and C220 combo I was using sounded sterile in comparison with more background noise from the amps. The Mcintosh could make my Khorns dig a little deeper in the bass but it was negligible.  Overall I found the Inspire combo to be MUCH better for my listening needs. I do miss my remote control though.

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1 hour ago, Lost240 said:

My inspire amps sound more life like. Warmer sounding with more realism. The Mcintosh 202 and C220 combo I was using sounded sterile in comparison with more background noise from the amps. The Mcintosh could make my Khorns dig a little deeper in the bass but it was negligible.  Overall I found the Inspire combo to be MUCH better for my listening needs. I do miss my remote control though.

I'm not familiar with the MC202 is that a SS amp? Beside the MC30's I also have MC240's as well as the MC300 which is SS with Autoformers. The sound from the SS is different than the 30's etc. And may sound somewhat clinical comparing to tube amps but still very nice. So are you comparing the Inspire amp to your SS MC amp sound?

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1 hour ago, pantoramasan said:

I'm not familiar with the MC202 is that a SS amp? Beside the MC30's I also have MC240's as well as the MC300 which is SS with Autoformers. The sound from the SS is different than the 30's etc. And may sound somewhat clinical comparing to tube amps but still very nice. So are you comparing the Inspire amp to your SS MC amp sound?

I was comparing the Inspire amp/pre combo to my SS Mcintosh amp and Tube preamp. 

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On 10/23/2017 at 2:46 PM, pantoramasan said:

I have been reading this thread with great interest. Can anyone give me an idea if Dennis Had’s amp would perform better than say, McIntosh MC30’s pair? I am using the reissue C22 pre amp and have Klipschorn Speakers. I would appreciate any input and am very interested in trying one of his amps if there is a discernible difference. 

 

I own a pair of MC30s and an Inspire “Fire Bottle” SE Stereo Tube Amplifier HO, but they're installed in different systems.   

 

The MC30s are one of my favorite amps.  (I like the classic “warm” tube sound.)  

 

Unfortunately, I don’t own Klipschorn.  (I don’t have the room.)   I have my MC30s paired with Snell Type CV.   I have my Inspire SEP amp paired with my Klipsch RF-7II (101 dB sensitivity).

 

Of course, one concern with a single-ended amp is whether or not the amp has adequate power.    In addition to speaker sensitivity, other important factors are the size of the room (H x W x D), and how loud you listen, and if you use a subwoofer to off-load work from the main amp and speakers (i.e., crossover before the amp).

 

The type of music is also important.  Most pop music has little dynamic range, and is less demanding on a hi-fi system compared with uncompressed hi-resolution (e.g., 24bit/192kHz FLAC) recordings of large-scale orchestral music, such as classical music and opera.  If you’re listening to a folk singer and acoustic guitar (or any music with little dynamic range), then a single-ended amp paired with high-sensitivity speakers (like your Klipschorn) will likely get the job done very nicely in an average size room at reasonable listening levels.   OTOH, if you’re playing a high-res recording of Mahler’s Symphony 2, and/or have a huge room, and/or listen at “ear bleed” levels, then the extra power of MC30s may be better for the task.  

 

The Inspire SEP amp is capable of excellent sound quality, and offers a lot of flexibility in terms of tube rolling.    Changing the Inspire “Fire Bottle” SE Stereo Tube Amplifier HO amp’s output tubes to a different supported type results in a significant change in sound quality.  (Certain rectifier tubes must be used with certain output tubes.)  Similarly, different input tubes are supported, and affect the sound. 

 

Here’s the output tubes that I’ve tried in my Inspire amp:

 

  • Zenith 6V6G (vintage)
  • Sylvania 6L6GA (vintage)
  • Sylvania 7408 (vintage, 6V6 variant)
  • Mullard EL34
  • Bugle Boy EL34 (vintage)
  • Russian 6P3S-E (Russian military surplus 1980s 6L6GC equivalent)
  • Groove Tube Gold Series GT6L6GE (6L6GC)
  • McIntosh branded GE 6L6GC (vintage)
  • GE 6L6GC (vintage)
  • Tung-Sol 7581A (6L6GC variant)
  • Tung-Sol 6L6G (6L6GC in a big bottle)
  • Gold Lion KT88
  • Tung-Sol KT150
  • Gold Lion KT66
  • Sylvania 5881

 

Rectifiers that I’ve tried:  5Y3, 5U4, 5U4GB, 5V4, 5V4GA, 5AR4 (multiple manufacturers of each).

 

Front-end (9 pin miniature socket) tubes that I’ve tried:    6CG7, 6N1P-EB, 6DJ8, 6N2P-EV, E88CC.

 

FWIW, I run both my MC30s and my Inspire SEP amp directly from the variable output of an Oppo universal player (i.e., no preamp).  (In both cases I could insert a McIntosh MX110Z pre-amp, but I prefer the “minimalist” approach whenever possible.)  In both cases I have a subwoofer connected to the Oppo, which offloads the main amp and speakers.  However, most music can be enjoyed without a sub (unless you want to hear and feel the lowest pedal notes of a pipe organ).

 

My favorite tube combination in my Inspire “Fire Bottle” SE Stereo Tube Amplifier HO is Groove Tube Gold Series GT6L6GE 6L6GC (the Russian 6P3S-E is also excellent), Sylvania 5V4G (5AR4 is also good), and Amperex (Holland) 6DJ8.   Of course, my results would not be relevant to you because I’m using Klipsch RF-7 II with my Inspire amp, while you are using Klipschorns.   And we are likely listening to different types of music, at different levels, in rooms with different acoustics.   And we probably have different preferences for which inevitable imperfections in sound quality we are willing to accept.   With that said, the Inspire “Fire Bottle” SE Stereo Tube Amplifier HO is capable of excellent sound quality, and tube rolling can be a lot of fun … until it drives you crazy … 

 

Bottom line, I suggest owning both the MC30s and an Inspire amp.   And then get an MC225 … :)

 

Following is a list of my current systems.   I mostly listen to classical and opera.  SACDs, high-res FLAC from HDTracks, Blu-ray audio and video, and CDs.

 

------------------

 

Living room:  Stereo speakers are Snell Type CV.   Subwoofer:  Klipsch P-312W.  The source components are Oppo BDP-95 (with USB hard drive containing high-res FLAC recordings), and Dual 1249 with Stanton 681EE.  Amps include a pair of McIntosh MC30s, Scott 296, McIntosh MX110 / McIntosh MC275, a pair of Pilot HF-56 mono receivers, an NAD pre-amp and Acurus A250 power-amp for movies, and a McIntosh 2155 driving JBL L830s in the kitchen / dining room.   A patch panel (banana plugs) allows me to connect the speakers to whichever amp I want, and a Niles AXP-1 RCA selector switch connects the Oppo to the amp.   Chromecast Audio for internet radio and Spotify Premium.

 

TV room:  Stereo speakers are Klipsch Palladium P-37F.   Subwoofer:  Klipsch P-312W.  The source is an Oppo BDP-105 (with USB hard drive containing high-res FLAC recordings).  The amps are Scott 399, McIntosh MC225, Kenwood KR-9050, Fisher 800B, Fisher X-1000, Scott 299C, McIntosh MC240, and an NAD C375BEE.   The tube amps are for music.   The solid-state amps are for movies.   A patch panel (banana plugs) allows me to connect the speakers to whichever amp I want, and Niles AXP-1 RCA selector switches connect the Oppo to the amp.   Chromecast Audio for internet radio and Spotify Premium.

 

Office: Stereo speakers are JBL L880.  Sources:   Oppo DV-980H SACD/CD/DVD, and my Windows 10 laptop with Music Streamer II DAC.  Amps: Fisher 500C, Scott 299B, Altec 353A, and an NAD D 3020 for general internet use (and summertime).   Banana jacks allow me to connect the speakers to whichever amp I want, and a Niles AXP-1 RCA selector switch connects the Oppo to the amp.  

Basement:  Front, center, and left speakers are Klipsch RF-7 II.  A single rear speaker is a Klipsch RF-7.   Subwoofers:  SVS SB16-Ultra, Klipsch R-115SW.  Source:  Oppo UDP-205
(with USB hard drive containing high-res FLAC recordings).  Amps: Scott 272, Inspire “Fire Bottle” SE Stereo Tube Amplifier HO, Scott 222C, McIntosh MX110Z tuner/preamp, Fisher KX-200, Scott 296, Pilot SA-260, Scott LK150.   A patch panel allows me to connect the speakers to whichever amp I want, and F/F RCA cables enable me to connect an amp to the Oppo, and a power amp to the MX110Z.   Chromecast Audio for internet radio and Spotify Premium.

 

Bedroom:  The speaker is a single Klipsch WF-35.  Source is an older CD player.  Fisher TA 500 (AM/FM mono receiver).  Chromecast Audio for internet radio and Spotify Premium.

 

 

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"Bottom line, I suggest owning both the MC30s and an Inspire amp.   And then get an MC225 … :)"

 

I can see that happening in the foreseeable future. Always wanted to check out the MC225. If one comes along at a fair price, I will be doing that as well.

 

BTW, Impressive collection of gear you have.

 

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