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  #21  
Old 01-08-2021, 07:09 PM
PHC1 PHC1 is offline
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Originally Posted by Formerly YB-2 View Post
Soliloquy 5.0, no doubt. Very easy to drive. I used with a McIntosh MA6100 back in the previous century and was a good match, as they were with tubes. Soliloquy started out as the speaker arm of Cary before it was moved out on its own (for whatever reason). A very nice sound.
Yes, 5.0 in Rosewood. Besides a very pleasant sound, they were also good looking monitors. Some Dennis Had tube gear drove them as well as other small tube amps.
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  #22  
Old 01-09-2021, 09:38 AM
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Bart, even better, one of each for the different rooms and still having a dozen more rooms for future systems as the inspiration comes. Oh and a butler to serve tea or something a bit stronger while listening.

Ha!
Well, as I like to choose and serve myself (and my better half) a nice single malt, you omit the butler.
And as you can listen to one system at a time, you can omit the other dozen rooms as well.
Hey wait, I see I'm already in audio nirvana!
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  #23  
Old 01-09-2021, 01:26 PM
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Ha!
Well, as I like to choose and serve myself (and my better half) a nice single malt, you omit the butler.
And as you can listen to one system at a time, you can omit the other dozen rooms as well.
Hey wait, I see I'm already in audio nirvana!
Agreed Bart. In reality, all you need is ONE that truly moves you. Not just an audio but many things in life. The rest is just noise, distraction and a temporary toy/pacifier for the soul that seeks more sustenance than materialistic possessions.
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  #24  
Old 01-10-2021, 05:01 AM
Charles Charles is offline
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Originally Posted by SAM992 View Post
I have been pure tube in the past, and pure solid state... but I found the best combo for my listening and my ear is the tube pre-amp and solid state amp... specially with McIntosh where they deliberately make their solid state sound more tubby, and their tubes sound more SS... the fusion of the two works out to perfect for me.
Sam992, you have hit on a fact that I hope you hang onto. Mac SS amps with the autoformers sound tubey. I have said this repeatedly. 45 years ago I was so busy in the practice of medicine but I always had to have a hi-fi.

I had a Mac 275 amp. I was frustrated because I couldn't figure out if I wanted to turn it off or leave it on. I had DQ 10's. I bought a Mac 2100 which was a 105 watt per channel SS amp. I was struck by the similarity of the sound. I was totally satisfied by the sound of the 2100.I did not have the ultra expensive cables or cords. Essentially what you could buy at Best Buys of today but the sound was really good.

I favor smoothness and sweetness with as much clarity and resolution as possible. Can't abide a harsh mid or treble.

I must have bass and plenty of it. I never heard a 20 Hz note I objected to.

Best

Charles

p.s. One must realize that a speaker that has little to no low bass capability needs a sweet mid and treble and may benefit more from a tube amp because they can sound thin. Speakers with low bass capability to 20 Hz will inherently have a sweeter mid and treble because they tend to sound fuller. That has been my experience over the years. Speakers are a matter of taste. Many folks have low bass and bass power a low priority. Tubes cause what bass there is to sound fatter/fuller/deeper and provide the smooth mid and treble.

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Last edited by Charles; 01-10-2021 at 05:25 AM.
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  #25  
Old 01-10-2021, 09:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuffaloBill View Post
"Well, if they're both designed correctly, they should sound the same".
There are several basic differences between tubes and transistors which contribute to their sound. 1) tubes generate even harmonics which are more pleasing to the human ear. 2) tubes are on until turned off by bias or signal level 3) transistors generate odd order harmonics which are less pleasing and 4) transistors are off until turned on by bias and/or signal.
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  #26  
Old 01-30-2021, 06:48 AM
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I was solid-state only for quite a while, too. As a rank neophyte, it always seemed tube equiment was usually more expensive than SS, and it was weird-looking (to me), with low power compared to some SS gear. Times have changed, certainly.

The only reason I have a tube preamp now (Mac C2300) is the heavy influence of AA; the high praise here led me to try one. I've since come to the conclusion that a tube preamp with a solid state amp is a great combo, and I would never go the other way, as I'm still leery due to horror stories I've heard regarding tube failure, especially with a power amp.

In my tube explorations I have found that the sound depends greatly on which tubes you use. Not every tube I put into my 2300 was "smooth, liquid and warm" to my ears. I seem to have settled on Telefunken Black Diamonds, made by JJ, and they have a great sound. But, if I want to tame bright recordings I'd use a warmer tube (JJ Hi-Performance Gold Pins, which I have in house). Tubes are versatile that way, and it's less expensive than buying new equipment.
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  #27  
Old 02-01-2021, 12:02 AM
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I'm still leery due to horror stories I've heard regarding tube failure, especially with a power amp.
I do not understand your concern. From your signature--you've dropped tens of thousands on your system. If you decided a tube power amp sounded better, would you really care about a few hundred dollars every few years?
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  #28  
Old 02-01-2021, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by PeterMusic View Post
I do not understand your concern. From your signature--you've dropped tens of thousands on your system. If you decided a tube power amp sounded better, would you really care about a few hundred dollars every few years?
While it is rare, I have heard about some catastrophic tube failures in power amps (amp damage and such). That was quite a while ago, and today's tube amps are more reliable certainly, but those old horror stories stuck with me and were a big reason I avoided tubes. But I didn't hear such stories about preamps, so between that and high praise for the C2300 I took a plunge. No real interest in switching out my current amps, unless at some point I do so because of how heavy they are, since I'm getting older and less able to manage them.

Being near retirement (I hope), the additional money for tube replacement could make a difference later on, and if I downsize in preparation for said retirement it would be for inexpensive solid-state. But I think the tube/SS combo is a really good idea.
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  #29  
Old 02-02-2021, 02:35 PM
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Catastrophic failure would be something that caused $$thousands in damage. If there is damage, usually a couple of resistors or something similar. Hardly catastrophic. As PeterMusic stated, go for the best sound and don't care about the tube/solid-state thing. When you downsize there are any number of terrific tube integrated amps as well as solid-state models.

The reason you rarely hear of any damage with a tube preamp tube going bad is they run at much lower voltage & current than does a power amp output tube.
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  #30  
Old 02-02-2021, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prepress View Post
The only reason I have a tube preamp now (Mac C2300) is the heavy influence of AA; the high praise here led me to try one. I've since come to the conclusion that a tube preamp with a solid state amp is a great combo, and I would never go the other way, as I'm still leery due to horror stories I've heard regarding tube failure, especially with a power amp.
I was of the same conviction that tube preamp, but not amp, was the way to go for the last 30 years or so. I stayed away from tubes in amps because of biasing... I don’t want a $10 or $20K piece of gear that must be adjusted all the time, with tubes that don’t last long... or can blow up. Then a couple years ago I went to event introducing the new ARC 160m. Gordon (I think) explained they had finally put the tubes under microprocessor control... so no more biasing, also this would allow tubes to run much longer and cooler. That moment I realized the reason for my choice of solid state amps was gone. I only needed to wait for the stereo version to come out. I did... and it is just plain stunning when combined with all other high definition tubed components I would not even consider going back. The ARC Tubed DAC is also stunning... putting these things together is just plain magic (not magic in “wow, that is tubey”, but as in “wow, that is detailed, natural and beautiful”). No mater how detailed and natural every piece of solid state gear is... I have never heard this degree of musicality come out of a system. I cannot restrain my foot from moving while listening. I could no longer care less if I can hear the cellist move his foot (although if I listened I am sure it is there) or the train go through the tube below the auditorium... the draw to the emotional content of the music simply overwhelms my analytical side with my system. After 50 years of avoiding tube amps you couldn’t trade mine for a $200,000 solid state amp.... although I think I will trade up to the 160 mono blocks next year. End of story, I am never going back.
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Last edited by George Prentice; 02-02-2021 at 06:41 PM.
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