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JohnW

Decware SE84C Zen Triode?

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Had a (very) little windfall and looking to dip my toe into tubes. Currently running a Marantz SR7013 into a Parasound 2250 v.2 into a pair of '84 Cornwalls with re-capped B3 crossovers. And it sounds good. Really good. I'm really happy with it.

But...maybe it could sound...even better? (I think you know what I'm talking about)

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't influenced by the recent hype over the Reisong A10. Which led me to look at the Nobsound 6P1 and the Monoprice Tube Amp...but only because of the hype, they're as cheap as you can get, and if I'm not happy, there's a return policy. But if I DO like what I hear, enough to replace the Parasound with a tube amp, I'm sure I'll upgrade. So why not skip that step?

So I started poking around the used market. Almost pulled the trigger on a Jolida JD302B for $650 last night, but thought I'd sleep on it. Woke up this morning and it was sold.

Found a guy this morning thirty miles away with a Decware SE84C Zen Triode for $350. The model with no volume knob. Just inputs and outputs. Does not have any tubes. Good price? Good amp?

I'm sort of wandering in the dark here. Would appreciate any guidance.

But this thread will document my foray into tubes.

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Lots more information is needed.  Room size and characteristics, listening level, type of music you enjoy, distance from speakers when listening, etc. would be helpful.  Can you provide more details about the Decware amp you saw with pictures of the underside?  
 

 

Maynard

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1 hour ago, tube fanatic said:

Lots more information is needed.  Room size and characteristics, listening level, type of music you enjoy, distance from speakers when listening, etc. would be helpful.  Can you provide more details about the Decware amp you saw with pictures of the underside?  
 

 

Maynard

Room size and characteristics: 14'x20'. Listening on the 14' axis. Vaulted ceiling--12' high at speakers, 8' high at listening position. Room has a large area rug and back wall is lined with plush furniture. Listening position is about 30" from back wall. Left side wall has sliding glass door with pleated curtains. RIght side opens to kitchen and rest of house.

Listening level: 50-75 db, but every once in a while, you have to jam.

I enjoy everything, from Dr. Dre to Diana Krall to Stan Getz to Rush to Leo Kottke to Allison Krauss to Johnny Cash to Mozart and Bach.

Here's the ad for the amp: https://offerup.com/item/detail/937056339/

 

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350 for that amp is a steal if it works. But those Jam moments will be questionable

 

15 to 35 WPC will get you both decent low level listening and plenty of grunt for the Jam moments

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8 minutes ago, joessportster said:

350 for that amp is a steal if it works. But those Jam moments will be questionable

 

15 to 35 WPC will get you both decent low level listening and plenty of grunt for the Jam moments

That's what I'm thinking. Missed the damned boat on that Jolida, I think.

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I have a pair of the kit form of those amps. They only put out about 1.8 watts per channel. You can buy 2 and bridge them mono for about 5.5 watts/channel. Great sounding little amps, but you won't be able to crank up the volume too loud. Plenty loud on my modded K-Horns, though. You'll need 2 EL-84 tubes and 1 6922 type tube,

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I wish I had a frame of reference for how loud these things can get.

Lust object for the day: Jolida Fusion 3502p. A bit pricey though.

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4 hours ago, JohnW said:

And now the Dynaco ST-70? Whole bunch of them on Ebay....hmmm...

Most of the ones you find on Ebay are going to need restoration to work as intended which is going to raise the cost. Unless you can do the work yourself you will have about as much as buying a new clone of one from one of the sellers. If you do not mind a Chinese clone they can be purchased on Amazon, with return if not satisfied, for around the price of a used Dynaco ST-70. Like $700. Just last week I bought an Eico ST-70 for myself to do a restoration on but restoring old equipment is my hobby not to save money. If not I would have bought a Chinese clone. 

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4 hours ago, henry4841 said:

Most of the ones you find on Ebay are going to need restoration to work as intended which is going to raise the cost. Unless you can do the work yourself you will have about as much as buying a new clone of one from one of the sellers. If you do not mind a Chinese clone they can be purchased on Amazon, with return if not satisfied, for around the price of a used Dynaco ST-70. Like $700. Just last week I bought an Eico ST-70 for myself to do a restoration on but restoring old equipment is my hobby not to save money. If not I would have bought a Chinese clone. 


nothing on Amazon.

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If you are thinking about the ST70, I would recommend Will Vincent ST70. Built with upgrades parts, you will have power to spare. It will make your Cornwalls sing IMHO  I am really enjoying mine on my Klipsch speakers. Another option is Inspire by Dennis Had Universal Amp . Both amps show up used not that often though. I have no patience I bought new. Although I am very new to tubes and no expert. I believe my S.S amp days are over. You owe it to yourself IMHO to try out tube amps

 

Rich

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7 hours ago, henry4841 said:

Most of the ones you find on Ebay are going to need restoration to work as intended which is going to raise the cost.

Yeah, ok.

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23 minutes ago, JohnW said:

Yeah, ok.

Are you making any progress in your choices...

Wonder if your early leanings at your earliest post have any good feedback for you.

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40 minutes ago, billybob said:

Are you making any progress in your choices...

Wonder if your early leanings at your earliest post have any good feedback for you.

I am. I thought about playing it safe with the Reisong A10--I can always send it back if it doesn't do anything for me, but given it's only 6 watts per channel, I could listen to Nora Jones all day, but when it comes to an action movie, I might be SOL.

So I've been googling brands: Nobsound, BoyuRange, all Chinese, mostly great reviews, but quite a few reviews describing smoke, funny smells...hmmm...

Then there were the Fishers and Scotts, and some old Magnavoxes that have been pulled from consoles...and their reputation is good...the stereo I started listening to was my parents' Magnavox console...perhaps that might stir something deep in my musical psyche...but it looks like this gear takes a bit of maintenance, and while I'm certain I could teach myself how to do it, I'm not inclined to. Then there's the whole curb appeal issue (I'm happily married).

Went down the ST70 rabbit hole...that kept me up late in bed until the power died on my iPad last night. While I'm curious, it's a lot of money for used gear that always seems to have the original tubes. You know, from 1963. Now I've nothing against 1963, I'm from 1963 myself, but bits of me are wearing out and I know I don't sound as good as I used to, so...

Then I looked at Jolida. Couple of them were available on OfferUp and FB Marketplace...like I said, I missed the boat on a JD302B on Ebay, and there's a Jolida 801a for $1000, but the ad is two years old and the guy who posted it isn't responding.

Then I found an open box
Fusion 3502P at Music Direct for a good price...it's the right color for my rack (black with blue leds), and of the few reviews I've been able to dig up on Jolida, it seems the gear is an incredible value.

So I bought it. Hopefully it's the last amp I'll need for a while. I'm confident that the quality won't be questionable, and that it has more than enough power to meet my needs, so it really comes down how much I like listening to it. Which is what I was after in the first place: a good starting point in the world of tubes.

60 day money-back guarantee (shipping's on me if I'm not satisfied).

So, all things considered (and there's a LOT) this seems like the best choice, and the only one worth making so far.


https://www.musicdirect.com/power-amp/Jolida-Fusion-3502P-Power-Amplifier-6550-Black-OPEN-BOX

 

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6 minutes ago, JohnW said:

I am. I thought about playing it safe with the Reisong A10--I can always send it back if it doesn't do anything for me, but given it's only 6 watts per channel, I could listen to Nora Jones all day, but when it comes to an action movie, I might be SOL.

So I've been googling brands: Nobsound, BoyuRange, all Chinese, mostly great reviews, but quite a few reviews describing smoke, funny smells...hmmm...

Then there were the Fishers and Scotts, and some old Magnavoxes that have been pulled from consoles...and their reputation is good...the stereo I started listening to was my parents' Magnavox console...perhaps that might stir something deep in my musical psyche...but it looks like this gear takes a bit of maintenance, and while I'm certain I could teach myself how to do it, I'm not inclined to. Then there's the whole curb appeal issue (I'm happily married).

Went down the ST70 rabbit hole...that kept me up late in bed until the power died on my iPad last night. While I'm curious, it's a lot of money for used gear that always seems to have the original tubes. You know, from 1963. Now I've nothing against 1963, I'm from 1963 myself, but bits of me are wearing out and I know I don't sound as good as I used to, so...

Then I looked at Jolida. Couple of them were available on OfferUp and FB Marketplace...like I said, I missed the boat on a JD302B on Ebay, and there's a Jolida 801a for $1000, but the ad is two years old and the guy who posted it isn't responding.

Then I found an open box
Fusion 3502P at Music Direct for a good price...it's the right color for my rack (black with blue leds), and of the few reviews I've been able to dig up on Jolida, it seems the gear is an incredible value.

So I bought it. Hopefully it's the last amp I'll need.


https://www.musicdirect.com/power-amp/Jolida-Fusion-3502P-Power-Amplifier-6550-Black-OPEN-BOX

 

Well, thanks for that recap. There is alot that can be said about memory of music. Jolida have read alot about while here, and think so. Please let the others here know your impressions over time versus your Parasound amp.

Looks nice and sleep good, if you can...

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3 minutes ago, billybob said:

Well, thanks for that recap. There is alot that can be said about memory of music. Jolida have read alot about while here, and think so. Please let the others here know your impressions over time versus your Parasound amp.

Looks nice and sleep good, if you can...


Thanks.

I spent a lot of time from age 6-11,with my ear pressed against those Magnavox console speakers, listening to anything from The Partridge Family to Kiss to Led Zeppelin. Not critical listening by any means...but very definitely formative listening.

 

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6 minutes ago, JohnW said:


Thanks.

I spent a lot of time from age 6-11,with my ear pressed against those Magnavox console speakers, listening to anything from The Partridge Family to Kiss to Led Zeppelin. Not critical listening by any means...but very definitely formative listening.

 

Sounds like you were raised right.

Will be interesting to listen again.

At 60 wpc, thinking your good and with tubes, looking good from here. Maybe that Marantz will be warm and detailed like my old 7500 beast.

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Yeah, I don't know where this sudden bout of audiophilia came from. Last time was 2005...heard a friend's home theater and it sounded AMAZING. I had a Reference 3 system with a Harman/Kardon AVR 510, but that episode led to a Reference 7 7.2 system plugged into an Aragon Stage One/2007 Amp. Had to sell the separates to pay for our wedding (yes, it was worth it), replaced them with a Pioneer VSX-1120. Still have that system, as a 5.1, in my home office (speakers were too big and black for the family room).

Then bam--a few months ago, I just started chasing this need for AMAZING sound in the family room. Got the Cornwalls, upgraded the caps, tried new tweeters, opted for new tweeter diaphragms, bought the SR7013 to replace the Onkyo TX-NR676 (now on garage duty--so I had to buy some RB-3s and an old Hsu STF-1 for out there), movies sounded great, but music wasn't AMAZING, and hell, I bought these Cornwalls so music would sound AMAZING, found a killer deal on the Parasound, and now it does sound amazing...but not quite AMAZING.

Probably what's driving this is a combo of covid, politics, and losing a long-time close colleague at work to retirement. I think I needed control over something.

Hopefully it ends when the Jolida starts playing...because the wife is a tolerant woman...but her tolerance does have limits. :D

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Tolerance in a woman is a really good thing, not to be taken for granted. First love in music generally never gets forgotten.

Good for your health, body, and spirit. Just history repeating...

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