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Inspire by Dennis Had Enjoying Vacuum Tube Audio

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  #21  
Old 12-21-2013, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by pstrisik View Post
I just heard back from Dennis. My chassis is at the powder coater. So it will likely ship while I'm gone. I'll hope to have it here when I return home on 1/10. It may be that my request for custom color (Jaguar Carnival Red) will mean it will take longer at the powder coater.

Maybe someone else will have one sooner and can post impressions.
Peter, can't wait ... Have a great trip.
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Old 01-09-2014, 08:47 PM
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Had a great trip, thanks! Flying home tomorrow. Dennis said he would have the amp finished today and be listening to it. Here's a photo of the bare chasis painted Jag Red........ I love that he sends baby pictures!

.

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  #23  
Old 01-09-2014, 11:17 PM
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Just got these!






I really love the finished shot. It looks creamy warm like I hope it sounds!


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  #24  
Old 01-09-2014, 11:45 PM
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Originally Posted by longbowbbs View Post
No way 15 watts is adequate for the Vandy's. You will get sound, but not the satisfying low end that could be achieved with proper amping. I love SET's and a great OTL amp sound, but you will want a speaker in the 96db or better to wring the full measure from a low power amp.
I bet they would 'sing' on my son's mighty Zu set up !
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Old 01-10-2014, 04:16 PM
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Peter,
Love the amp. I've always wanted to try a SET tube amp but I own Vandersteens and they are only 85 db efficient. I emailed Dennis and he thinks the KT150s will drive the Treos but I'm struggling to see how 12 watts can do it. I'm still tempted and may go for it just to prove it one way or the other. Keep us posted on your progress.
Ah, a Treo owner! That is next on the acquisition list!
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  #26  
Old 01-11-2014, 01:46 PM
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Had a great trip, thanks! Flying home tomorrow. Dennis said he would have the amp finished today and be listening to it. Here's a photo of the bare chasis painted Jag Red........ I love that he sends baby pictures!

.

That red is stunning!! Can't wait for the first impressions. I've read what I could find about the KT-150 in general. Most say it has all the virtues of the KT-120 but with a "sweeter" tube sound.

I think I mentioned that Dennis said a good friend and Vandersteen dealer thought these amps would pair well with the Treos. Well, I called him and he was gracious enough to talk with me about it. He has NOT heard the pairing but is a Cary dealer and knows Dennis' designs quite well. He admitted that if you want to play really loud with Treos, these low power SET designs would run out of gas but at normal listening levels was sure it would sound great.

One thing Dennis mentioned is that the tube type matters with respect to controlling the drivers in a speaker. I'll quote Dennis here ... "I will say DO NOT go for a 300B, 2A3 type of amplifier for your Treo's. These amps do not have the capability to control the drivers in the Vandys. That is the beauty of the beam tetrod/pentode vacuum tube in class A service with feedback. I have been at this for over 55 years and I love music so I can enjoy many types of reproduction but in my home and for serious listening there is nothing like single-ended tubes."

Keep us posted,
Wes
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  #27  
Old 01-11-2014, 01:56 PM
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Ah, a Treo owner! That is next on the acquisition list!
Treos are great. If you ever meet Richard, he's a hoot ... No nonsense kind of guy.
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  #28  
Old 01-11-2014, 04:04 PM
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I met Richard in December. I had a great time with him. We spent the evening with his Model 7's. What a genius!

I love his speakers with Cary gear!
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  #29  
Old 01-11-2014, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Jwhcfi View Post
That red is stunning!! Can't wait for the first impressions. I've read what I could find about the KT-150 in general. Most say it has all the virtues of the KT-120 but with a "sweeter" tube sound.

I think I mentioned that Dennis said a good friend and Vandersteen dealer thought these amps would pair well with the Treos. Well, I called him and he was gracious enough to talk with me about it. He has NOT heard the pairing but is a Cary dealer and knows Dennis' designs quite well. He admitted that if you want to play really loud with Treos, these low power SET designs would run out of gas but at normal listening levels was sure it would sound great.

One thing Dennis mentioned is that the tube type matters with respect to controlling the drivers in a speaker. I'll quote Dennis here ... "I will say DO NOT go for a 300B, 2A3 type of amplifier for your Treo's. These amps do not have the capability to control the drivers in the Vandys. That is the beauty of the beam tetrod/pentode vacuum tube in class A service with feedback. I have been at this for over 55 years and I love music so I can enjoy many types of reproduction but in my home and for serious listening there is nothing like single-ended tubes."

Keep us posted,
Wes
That's my guess with the AR2ax'. Should sound great at moderate volumes. I don't expect to rock the house though, particularly since my room is ~20 x 26. Everything I've heard though is that SE designs allow for more satisfying listening at lower levels than PP. With my PP setup I try to keep it under 80db.

Dennis commented to me about these pentodes. Quoting him,

Quote:
I have been using the Northern Electric KT88's very successfully. Nice vacuum tubes that will probably last 10 to 15 years to... gosh the way I run them maybe longer. Anyway, Peter, the fellow who purchased the amplifier I sent you pictures of requested the new KT150's, I will have KT150's on Wednesday. I will be able to test first hand in my design and listen as well. I will advise you which tube I believe is the best choice. The technical specs on the KT150 certainly appear to be a perfect match. I really like the KT88's by Gold Lion and I love these Northern Electric KT88's. I am not a fan of the KT120 tube as it hard clips when over driven. So I will have a verdict in a few days. I have had a number of folks asking me about the KT150's so this will give me the opportunity to test em out.
The hard clipping of the KT120s would create harshness. Softer clipping of the KT150s would sound "sweeter" - both assuming they are driven to some clipping which is probably a safe assumption in a 12wpc design.
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  #30  
Old 01-18-2014, 10:26 PM
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Hi Everyone,

I received the amp Wednesday, set it up Thursday eve and have been playing since. This is what I wrote to Dennis:

Quote:
I love the amplifier! Did some switching around tubes and so far I'm preferring the 6H1P driver and the 274B rectifier combo as well. There is power enough to listen with the AR2ax', though I'm curious what higher sensitivity speakers would do (also single driver). I've had to play at higher settings to get the same volume, but I'm guessing that's expected with lower wattage. I'm surprised how well it produces bass. I've also turned up the tweeter and midrange pots on the AR's to get the same tonal balance. It sounded kind of veiled set for where the CJ was playing. At some point, I'll roll tubes in the SLP-05 (I have a few brands) to optimize them mating as best I can.

I'm still tweaking and acclimating, but I can say my hoped for sound that is easier to listen to/less fatiguing has been realized. It is clearly smoother than the CJ. I'm also getting a bump up in imaging along with more of the woody sounds from horns and acoustic guitars and more of the breath in vocals.
The reference to tubes is the choice of 6N30 or 6H1P for input and 5AR4 or 274B for rectifier. 12 wpc with the 5AR4 and 10 wpc with the 274B, but the 274B is just nicer in sound. Impressive looking tube, too!
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