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Mila1924

tube vs solid state

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Hi,

 

I just recently purchased a scott lk 72 integrated tube amp.  it sounds great, but (don't attack me) it honestly stresses me out.  Too old, tubes stress me, too easy for daughter to touch, and lastly, Its in our massive living room and the 35ish watts makes me have to turn it too loud and I think im loss some sound quality at the high volume levels..   

 

any experience/opinions with a marantz 2275 reciever?  im wondering if that would sound as good if not better than my scott?  i THINK im interested in it beacause its less fragile, daughter cant do damage to it, and I THINK the more wattage would be better suited for my large living room and the volume that i need to turn it to would be more fitting for a higher wattge receiever.

 

any thoughts?

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I'm not a tube fan anymore.

 

Back in the 70's, 80's and even early/mid 90's, yes, tubes. But those older solid state amps is what they were being compared to. Yes, there were exceptions (Levisnon ML-2) but by and large, tubes have a more "musical" friendly sound, per se'.

 

But today things have changed. Even the guys who design the most expensive amps on the planet almost universally admit that they personally prefer their solid state designs.

 

And then of course, now there's digital. And I don't mean class D. IMO the best of both worlds and then some.

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7 minutes ago, artto said:

I'm not a tube fan anymore.

 

Back in the 70's, 80's and even early/mid 90's, yes, tubes. But those older solid state amps is what they were being compared to. Yes, there were exceptions (Levisnon ML-2) but by and large, tubes have a more "musical" friendly sound, per se'.

 

But today things have changed. Even the guys who design the most expensive amps on the planet almost universally admit that they personally prefer their solid state designs.

 

And then of course, now there's digital. And I don't mean class D. IMO the best of both worlds and then some.

what are your thoughts on the wattage difference, in regard to klipsch cornwalls?  would that 75 watts vs the 35 watts, be better, even though i hear tube watts are better.

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3 minutes ago, Mila1924 said:

what are your thoughts on the wattage difference, in regard to klipsch cornwalls?  would that 75 watts vs the 35 watts, be better, even though i hear tube watts are better.

"Tube watts" tend to sound louder, because tube amps by their very nature have more distortion and distortion makes things sound louder.

 

Tube amps also tend to emphasize the even, pleasant sounding harmonic distortion, while solid state tends to emphasize more odd harmonics, albeit at much lower distortion levels.

 

Tube amps also tend to provide a more natural compression as they approach or exceed their performance limits where as solid state amps tend to clip more cleanly, but abruptly, which can sound quite unpleasant. So with solid state it's usually good to go with a little more power.

 

75 watts verses 35 watts is only a 3dB increase in sound level. 3dB = 2x. -3db = 1/2 the power. 10dB increase sounds twice as loud to the ear.

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1 hour ago, artto said:

"Tube watts" tend to sound louder, because tube amps by their very nature have more distortion and distortion makes things sound louder.

 

Tube amps also tend to emphasize the even, pleasant sounding harmonic distortion, while solid state tends to emphasize more odd harmonics, albeit at much lower distortion levels.

 

 

 

Respectfully, that's some of the craziest logic i have ever read concerning amplification. 

 

So with tube watts, the more distortion the better?  How does more distortion make the music louder?

 

Personally I like and def prefer my music reproduced with zero audible distortion. It is very easy with SS amps @ low to moderate volumes to reproduce a quality musical recording with  < .05% total distortion. In other words, the distortion is completely inaudible. 

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3 minutes ago, polizzio said:

 

" How does more distortion make the music louder? "

Many people associate high level with distortion (because that is what they are used to it is their norm). You can play them a clean loud passage but they won't consider it to be loud because it is not distorting. So it's not that the distortion makes it louder simply it can trigger a "louder response" in the listener.

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2 hours ago, artto said:

I'm not a tube fan anymore.

 

Back in the 70's, 80's and even early/mid 90's, yes, tubes. But those older solid state amps is what they were being compared to. Yes, there were exceptions (Levisnon ML-2) but by and large, tubes have a more "musical" friendly sound, per se'.

 

But today things have changed. Even the guys who design the most expensive amps on the planet almost universally admit that they personally prefer their solid state designs.

 

And then of course, now there's digital. And I don't mean class D. IMO the best of both worlds and then some.

 

Agreed. Today its so easy with clean SS amplification, quality loudspeakers, and high quality digital recordings to reproduce music at home very close to or rival a live performance. 

Why anybody wants to listen to vinyl or cassette tapes today is beyond me, unless for pure nostalgia. Or you prefer a some distortion, tape hiss, snap, crackle and pop. To rival your listening experience of say 30-40 years ago.

 

Today using the better Klipsch loudspeakers (even vintage products 50 years old), SS amps, and quality digital recordings. Its the next best thing to being there @ live performance. This is what I want, this is what i strive for, and its easy today.

Quality digital recordings have brought us to the promised land. Zero audible distortion, just the music and/or vocals.

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15 minutes ago, moray james said:

" How does more distortion make the music louder? "

Many people associate high level with distortion (because that is what they are used to it is their norm). You can play them a clean loud passage but they won't consider it to be loud because it is not distorting. So it's not that the distortion makes it louder simply it can trigger a "louder response" in the listener.

Exactly, because to most neophytes ear (most of us at first)  'loud' means some distortion/compression! But when you have very high performance speakers like Klipsch La Scalas or better loudness is no long longer associated with distortion, so it sounds 'clear' and loud.

John Kuthe...

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You can get some good money for the Scott LK so don't worry about it. Just sell and it get something you are comforable with... Music shouldn't stress you out 8-)

 

 

 

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Tried tubes (VTA ST-70) and was not impressed ... thought my Marantz 2252B sounded just as good ... and did not have to deal with the hassle of just having one input.  Try the Marantz 2275 ... think you'll like it :D 

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29 minutes ago, seti said:

You can get some good money for the Scott LK so don't worry about it. Just sell and it get something you are comforable with... Music shouldn't stress you out 8-)

 

 

 

thanks for the advice, i used to look forward to being critical of my components and look forward to upgrades.  now i just want a hassle/stressfree system and just enjoy the music, and be done with the rabbit hole of equipment. 

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13 hours ago, Mila1924 said:

thanks for the advice, i used to look forward to being critical of my components and look forward to upgrades.  now i just want a hassle/stressfree system and just enjoy the music, and be done with the rabbit hole of equipment. 

Warning: Propaganda from me 😋

 

You might want to take a look at what's called a direct digital feedback amp (DDFA) (not class D). To my knowledge NAD is the only one making these. The NAD C390DD has been out of production for some time now and can be had for a song. One of the best values out there. New is the NAD M32, successor to the original M3. One thing is for sure, the clarity, openness and incredible low end is probably an order of magnitude beyond anything you've heard before, tube or solid state. Whether or not you like is up to you. I had been using mostly tube amps (Luxman MB3045 and Wright 3.5 Mono) and McIntosh or Crown solid state amps for decades until I heard the C390DD in my system. I now have an NAD M32. This is as close as I've gotten to "real" from an amplifier at any price.

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4 hours ago, artto said:

Warning: Propaganda from me 😋

 

You might want to take a look at what's called a direct digital feedback amp (DDFA) (not class D). To my knowledge NAD is the only one making these. The NAD C390DD has been out of production for some time now and can be had for a song. One of the best values out there. New is the NAD M32, successor to the original M3. One thing is for sure, the clarity, openness and incredible low end is probably an order of magnitude beyond anything you've heard before, tube or solid state. Whether or not you like is up to you. I had been using mostly tube amps (Luxman MB3045 and Wright 3.5 Mono) and McIntosh or Crown solid state amps for decades until I heard the C390DD in my system. I now have an NAD M32. This is as close as I've gotten to "real" from an amplifier at any price.

 

I have tons of tube amps but when I need it I have a modern NAD.

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I was a rep for NAD (and PSB) from 2001 till 2009 when they first came out with the Masters series.  It was darn fine equipment when it was working.  Hopefully they got all the kinks and bugs figured out on them.  But do like their gear and I can still buy it for cost if I wanted anything.  It's good to still know the upper level people.  :)

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19 hours ago, Emile said:

Tried tubes (VTA ST-70) and was not impressed ... thought my Marantz 2252B sounded just as good ... and did not have to deal with the hassle of just having one input.  Try the Marantz 2275 ... think you'll like it :D 

 

That's what a preamp is for with multiple inputs.  ;)

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I've got a couple of solid state receivers I keep around for powering outdoor speakers and a cd changer, where average sound is OK. My serious systems are all tubes and analog!

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This past weekend, while on vacation at my soon to be retirement house, I stacked 2 sets of Heresy and put them into a cheap Chinese chip amp (the $50 variety) with an equally bad iPad for a source using a mini-headphone to 2 RCA input cable.  I split the signal to the Heresy using "stacking" banana plugs.  The crazy part was, the sound was actually pretty good and I only needed about 2% of the supposed 100 Watts to make them very very loud.  My 28 year old daughter came downstairs and spent an hour listening to music including all kinds that she likes, so it must have been ok.

 

Sound quality and level are so dependent on all the items in your system and your room it is hard to give concrete direction and you have the religion of tube vs SS etc.  Best advice might be to find a way to audition any new gear you want to try and preferably on your speakers from your source equipment and in your room.  Good luck with the unending search for "better" sound.

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23 hours ago, seti said:

 

I have tons of tube amps but when I need it I have a modern NAD.

 

I have a modern NAD direct digital integrated amp but also plenty of tube amps if I need them. 😎

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I still have a few tube amps around (and use them occasionally) but today my main amp is a TPA3255 Class-d amp (a bit modded) and I am very happy indeed - and bearing in mind costs - I think Class-d is a no-brainer.

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I can appreciate the sound of tubes but give me Solid State any day!

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