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SWL

Are You Strictly Tubes or Solid State?

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I go both ways.
 
It seems like every time I switch from solid state to tubes, it is 100% clear to me that tubes have a more authentic sound quality to them. A richer, warmer more natural engaging sound.
 
Then when I go back to solid state.....and it's like this every time....it's like well, this is good enough. Why bother with the tube maintenance etc.? Solid state in my room is more lively, more snappy.
 
Sometimes I feel like a nut. Sometimes I don't. Ya know? I'm glad I can flip flop anytime I want based on my mood or whatever.
 
I should add that I use a tube DAC either way. At first I thought it was a gimmick but it is not.....and it has benefitted my system whether it's tubes or ss. Rolling tubes through the DAC makes a substantial difference in how you want your sound.
 
Anyway, after just spending about 500 bones rolling tubes and settling on a tube set I'm satisfied with.....this morning I just went back to my solid state stuff. Makes sense, right? LOL.
 
Actually, the sound is very satisfying. A change in sound is always welcome to my ears. Keep things fresh. Hearing a different sound that you're happy with is kinda like you just got new gear. It won't be long and I'll roll the tubes back into the scene.
 
Well anyway....seems like I always feel the need to post something when my ears are happy.
 
Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
 
 


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I have never tried tubes, but lately I think I would like to try them. I went from an AVR to a SS pre and SS amp, and that made a huge difference for 2 channel listening. I would like to get a tube pre and a tube amp, and switch them with the SS stuff....tube pre, SS amp and vice versa.

 

@SWL when you switch, is it completely SS or tubes, or have you tried integrating them? 

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For some time now, solid state.  I have had tube components in the past and certainly understand and appreciate the positive qualities that they can add to a system (their magic was always in the mids in my systems).   Auto biasing tubes would be the way to go for me and there there is no "hassle".   Never tried a tubed DAC, so I can't comment there.   I think this thread will have the majority of voters in the tube category.   I get it and understand why.  May eventually switch back myself, not anytime soon though.  

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I have never tried tubes, but lately I think I would like to try them. I went from an AVR to a SS pre and SS amp, and that made a huge difference for 2 channel listening. I would like to get a tube pre and a tube amp, and switch them with the SS stuff....tube pre, SS amp and vice versa.
 
[mention=15340]SWL[/mention] when you switch, is it completely SS or tubes, or have you tried integrating them? 
In the past I tried a Juicy Music Peach and Blueberry tube preamps with my solid state amps. It didn't float my boat......

......but now it's all ss or all tubes.....with the exception being the tube DAC is always part of the system and is very influential to the outcome and adds the tube sound benefits.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

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For some time now, solid state.  I have had tube components in the past and certainly understand and appreciate the positive qualities that they can add to a system (their magic was always in the mids in my systems).   Auto biasing tubes would be the way to go for me and there there is no "hassle".   Never tried a tubed DAC, so I can't comment there.   I think this thread will have the majority of voters in the tube category.   I get it and understand why.  May eventually switch back myself, not anytime soon though.  

Yeah, I'm just curious if I'm not alone on this and a big part of this is based on my hearing as I get older.

 

I'm a heavy equipment operator and wear ear protection all day every day. It affects my hearing even though it's protected. When I come home, I don't always hear the same way. Wearing ear plugs twelve hours a day has a tendency to build up ear wax so I'm really on the ball when it comes to cleaning my ears.....but sometimes I don't think I get it all out and it affects how I hear my tunes. I think ss has the ability to cut through ear wax better.

 

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

 

 

 

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I have an all tube system in one room, but will hook up what I have.

 

The JMA Merlin pre goes into my 2A3 anps. Most tubd preamps don't play well with ss amps - the output impedance of the preamps are too high to properly drive the ss. The bass is usually greatly rolled off.

 

Living room is SS, and computer office system is all SS.  I LOVE the way the tube system sounds but could go either direction if I had to.

 

Bruce

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I own a Fender tube amp for guitars, but the sound system is all SS and has been so for 45+ years. 

 

The best sound reproduction that I have heard did not come from tube amplification.

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I've been lucky enough to have the option of either through various tube amps, pre-amps, tube Dac's and tubed cd players.I also have modern and vintage SS equipment which I mostly use for home theater. The SS equipment I own is high wattage matched with speakers that can take the load of high volume they frequently are required to put out.

 

I much prefer the sound of tubes playing through my Belles and have pretty much settled with cycling my tube equipment with Klipsch speakers. The watts output on my tube amps range from 1.5 to 30. SET and Push/Pull.

 

With a good selection of vacuum tube brands you can alter the sound of most tube amps and source equipment. 

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Single Ended tube amps and High Efficiency speakers = Aural Ecstasy. :)

 

Preamp is either all tube, passive with tube buffer or a TVC.

 

I listen to whatever components best connect me emotionally with the music I love - technology notwithstanding.

 

It just so happens that the vast majority of the components that meet this requirement happen to be tube based. :)

 

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  I have bought and built both. Have not purchased or built tube gear in 15 years. Just finished an amplifier. 

  The two graphs show 5w at 1K and 18w at 400 Hz.  These levels are much higher than the amplifier operating level driving LS ii at sane level. A friend ran a these tests, takes special test equipment.

  Many tube amps do not have a noise level at -140 dB. 

Noise.pdf

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10 years ago I stepped into tubes for a short while. The Cary amp was supposed to be capable of performing well with the horns but did not deliver in the lower frequencies. So I began ‘tube rolling’ which got costly in short order. Then things started to burn out. So many tubes died dramatic deaths that I sent the unit in for a ‘look see’ service which found nothing. Disappointed I decided to go high $ and decided that solid state was the more dependable option. After much research I started into Accuphase products eventually settling on an E530 integrated. Really have not looked since but may still venture back into blending the Accuphase pre amp section with tube amplification. Sadly, as others have mentioned, I find the ears less discriminating with age so there’s not much upgrade motivation and this Accuphase is truly amazing by itself......... and it’s a tank. I listen daily for at least 10 hours and the performance has been flawless as well as superior. Still I wished I had the Fisher 500 my parents owned long ago. My sister got that and I doubt that it survived for long under her management. Oh well.

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I have never owned a tube amp but have always hoped for one at some point. That being the case I’m unfamiliar with their performance vis-a-vis power wattage/sound output. My Ohm Walsh Tall 2000 mains are nowhere near as efficient as most Klipsch speakers (88db @ 2.8 volts), so I’m not sure how well or what level of power I’d require.

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Strictly sold state, specifically class D.  My tube rolling days are over.  I got rid of my last space heater.

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The only tube gear I've ever owned was a Dynaco FM-3 tuner that I got for free from a guy since I delivered some speakers to him that he was buying from me.  It sounded...like FM radio?

 

I've never heard any tube amplification at home.  My current Pioneer Elite receiver has the best sound I've ever heard.  I've used Sony, Marantz, harman/kardon, Rotel, Panasonic, Emotiva.  The h/k twin powered 730 did sound excellent.  Wish I still had it since the prices of them are so high.  I think I paid less than $100 for the one I had in almost new condition.

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I have little to add to what sounds like a range of very good opinions.  I have an all-tube Joule Electra preamp with tube power supply, which works and sounds great as long as it doesn't need fixing but am glad I have a specialized repair person available.  Amps are Joule Electra OTL mono blocs, an esoteric design that right now sounds absolutely great, probably can't be beat for me by any other amp I know of.  Repair is expensive and they don't come back home anytime soon.  The sound is so good that the heat and slight hum and noise are absolutely worth it to me.

 

Each of my other components sounds just fine for me as well -- an all-SS 2-box CD player and DAC, SS Nak cassette player and Revox RTR, a mostly SS Magnum Dynalab tuner (tube output stage, which sounds better to me than the all-SS original), and SS turntable power supply.  All these SS units have run endlessly for many years with no repair needs.).

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All solid state.  I have not found that there is any magic in a vacuum.  I bought highly acclaimed tube mono blocs.  Once I lived with them a while and described their sound, suddenly they were "built to a price point" (what isn't?) and I "shouldn't expect much." 

 

In my experience, any good amp, not over driven, will sound good.  Tube amps offer colorations for music production that can't be had otherwise.  Good SS amps RE-produce whatever they are sent without material change.  Just what I'm looking for. 

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I use both... but tubes for 2 channel, solid state for 5.1... I am happy

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It's been low-mid 30's all day here and the rain is coming down sideways. Good day to rock out.

 

I've been listening to my ss amps all day. Very happy with the sound of all three amps I've been listening to. (should be getting my Marantz 250 back very soon from a full restoration)

 

So about a half an hour ago I hooked my tube amp back up and it happened all over again.....as expected. The sound is so sweet. Warm, rich, smooth, intimate, natural, authentic.....I could go on and on.

 

I guess in my case it pays to have multiple systems in the house as long as they are all somewhat inferior to the main system. That way I appreciate the main rig that much more.

 

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

 

 

 

 

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