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Sweetest CDP I have ever seen! - Page 2

post #16 of 54
nick,

i don't know man, thats way to big of a generalization. if we're talking heavily colored equipment then yeah, i completely agree with you. but thats due to coloration, not tubes.

i've run all tubed in my main system with several different components (including true tube output stage cd sources as well as tube buffer stages) without the sense of thickness or excessive warmth. i've run full solid state and had more coloration... it just depends on the components and their interaction with each other.

jude,

i agree completely that the arcam fmj line and the upper end creek stuff is gorgeous. too much gear looks like it was designed by pimps and people who live in long island (musical fidelity A and NuVista series anyone?) - the arcam and creek carry understated elegance that i find very appealing.

i've never seen the oracle or shanling in person, but both have way too much chrome for my tastes. there is something about oracle though that does it for me.

i'm a big fan of audio aero's prima one box player - one of the sexiest players to ever grace my system. the cary 306/200 has a certain charm as well, and the 47 labs flatfish (as freaky as it looks) was a unit i just loved staring at.

best,
carlo.
post #17 of 54
My friends at Decibel Audio just started carrying this player.They have been telling me I gotta try it.When I take vacation in a few weeks i will borrow one for an audition and posta review with pics if i find it to be all it's said to be.
post #18 of 54
Correct.

The "too much tube" theory assumes that inexpensive tube gear is being used. I like affordable gear. My preamp is a Creek OBH-12 passive w/remote. Got it used for $195. There's no way I will find a tubed passive that provides more detail for less than ten times that amount!

Thus, I'll keep the tubes at the amp and stick with solid state and passive gear for the rest. Easy solution. Simple to tweak. Big payoff. Less $$$.
post #19 of 54
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
You're getting one of the Shanling players?
No, I'm having the solid state output stage replaced with a custom tube output stage by Modwright/Jena Labs.
post #20 of 54
Wow. Gotta hear that. Will it be back for the meeting?
post #21 of 54
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
Wow. Gotta hear that. Will it be back for the meeting?
No. I know I mentioned this---sending the Sony to Modwright, may not have it for the meeting, Dparrish may bring his? None of this familliar at all? A bit early for senility to be creeping in. Maybe its the tubes.
post #22 of 54
Senile, huh? Get over to www.pegball.com and I'll kick yer ass.

Playing thomas right now... and he's winning.
post #23 of 54
Yes, but if you owned a Sudgen Headmaster you might understand why some people are going with tubed output stages in their CD players.

Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
Not weird at all.

A tubed source matched to a tubed preamp matched to a tube amplifier = too much tube! Things get a little syrupy by that point, making it nearly impossible to detect the changes tube rolling make. Plus, if you swap sources to a non-tubed unit, you gotta rebalance the overall tube sound. This is a pain.

I do my tubing at the amp stage. I'd do it at the preamp stage too if I could afford a decent one. Until then, I'll stick with a passive preamp.
post #24 of 54
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
I like affordable gear. My preamp is a Creek OBH-12 passive w/remote. Got it used for $195. There's no way I will find a tubed passive that provides more detail for less than ten times that amount!
Try the Mapletree Line 2m for $335. I was using a passive preamp before and the Line 2m crushes it for low-level detail. I wrote a review a while back in this thread: http://www.head-fi.org/forums/showth...threadid=14326
post #25 of 54
Why, of course! Where else would Sugden users get a piece of that tube magic?
post #26 of 54
From interview with Tim de Paravicini (the EAR guy, http://www.ear-usa.com/timdeparavicini.htm):

Quote:
Q: You use vacuum tubes in many of your designs. Some people have said that tubes have euphonic even-order harmonic distortion. Do you rely on this tube nonlinearity to achieve the sound of your mods, or do you always run the tubes in their linear region?

I do not rely on tube nonlinearity. I don't want a sound in my machines. What comes out must sound the same as what went in.

The "warmth" in a lot of tube electronics is due to their dismal top end, the bad transformers they use, and the loading down of their high-impedance outputs. Because of the output transformer and the feedback used, many tube circuits have a partial bass instability that gives a bloated bass. Any warmth in the tube sound is a defect, but listeners don't want to know that.

I don't have to use tubes in my designs; I only do it for marketing reasons. I've got an exact equivalent in solid state. I can make either type do the same job, and I have no preference. People can't pick which is which. And electrons have no memory of where they've been! The end result is what counts.

Most transistor-circuit architecture was different from tube-circuit architecture, and that's what people were hearing, more than the device itself. The main advantage of tubes is that an average tube has more gain than an average transistor. Second, tubes don't have the enormous storage times of transistors, so they are very fast. Tubes go to 100 MHz without trying.
post #27 of 54

It appears even famous designers have their delusions...

He uses tubes only for marketing reasons? Solid state sounds exactly the same? If so, his ******** is getting pretty hot from the heat of all those tubes in his audio gear.

Kelly mentioned that he said something to the tune of "it's all about the layout... so why not use cheap components because it's all the same".

Amp designers sometimes say the darndest things, don't they? Microsoft isn't the only company to engage in FUD.

If there is a 100% solid state amp out there that can equal the magnificence of a well designed 2A3, 45, or 71A SET, then by all means call Ted Koppel so we can put this NOS tube rolling business aside once and for all. Ye Olde ******** Alarme is beyond screeching and is now melting down.

His statements invalidate conventional wisdom, high-end component manufacturers, and valve circuit designers. I think he sums up his attitude best of all with this statement:

"I try to provoke people."

That, of all the things he mentioned, I DO believe.
post #28 of 54

Re: It appears even famous designers have their delusions...

Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
He uses tubes only for marketing reasons? Solid state sounds exactly the same? If so, his ******** is getting pretty hot from the heat of all those tubes in his audio gear.
Hm, Nick, I think you should have read the whole thing, not just the highlighted section.

Tubes after all are simply semiconductor components. Just like any other electronic component, they do not have *sound*, they have *behaviour*. For example, they happen to be linear in some part of their operating range. Above that range (which is different for different models/brands of tubes) most of them happen to saturate in a way that over some range of frequencies (say, DC would just saturate) is alike to introducting second order harmonics of a signal that has driven them. These are electrical properties which differ among different tubes and can all be accounted for and used in the circuit design to achieve the behaviour one wants to achieve. *Same* applies to transistors.
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
Kelly mentioned that he said something to the tune of "it's all about the layout... so why not use cheap components because it's all the same".
I don't know why this myth still lives here. Maybe that's because so few people around here have his products (not to brag or anything, but this is true, isn't it?).

Tim does use quality parts. Caps are Elna Cerafines and Wimas (except for power supply, where huge Daewoo caps stand tall...), most resistors look like Roedersteins to me, all transformers are custom-made by EAR. The only weak link is probably the Alps Blue pot, but I can see why he used it instead of a stepped-attenuator -- many people like being able to control the volume smoothly (I brought up this example before, but whatever: I remember posts around here from people who have ordered Headroom amps with SAs and then were unhappy because the volume control was, well, stepped). Anyhow, it is rather easy to replace, and my DACT CT-2 is on its way already.
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
His statements invalidate conventional wisdom, high-end component manufacturers, and valve circuit designers.
Hm. Now this is weird. /me wonders what conventional wisdom and which high-end component manufacturer were invalidated by his statements. And yeah, the guy is a valve circuit designer too, ya know .
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
I think he sums up his attitude best of all with this statement:

"I try to provoke people."

That, of all the things he mentioned, I DO believe.
Well, I see he succeeded in provoking you .
post #29 of 54
Quote:
Originally posted by Nick Dangerous
Not weird at all.

A tubed source matched to a tubed preamp matched to a tube amplifier = too much tube! Things get a little syrupy by that point, making it nearly impossible to detect the changes tube rolling make. Plus, if you swap sources to a non-tubed unit, you gotta rebalance the overall tube sound. This is a pain.

I do my tubing at the amp stage. I'd do it at the preamp stage too if I could afford a decent one. Until then, I'll stick with a passive preamp.
Believe it or not, compared to my Phillips SACD 1000, the AH! 4000 had a much more forward tilt from the midrange on up. This is with both the Siemens 7308 and the Ediswan CV5358/CV2492. The Phillips is a much smoother player with a sweeter midband.

I can't help thinking that your passive will be a major choke point in your system. Aren't those SET amps designed with minimal gain?
post #30 of 54
Quote:
nick dangerous:"it's all about the layout... so why not use cheap components because it's all the same"
Quote:
zzz:I don't know why this myth still lives here. Maybe that's because so few people around here have his products (not to brag or anything, but this is true, isn't it?).

Tim does use quality parts. Caps are Elna Cerafines and Wimas (except for power supply, where huge Daewoo caps stand tall...), most resistors look like Roedersteins to me, all transformers are custom-made by EAR.
kelly and i had this conversation on #headphones, and i believe all this really is is a mixup of information. as i understand it from dan meinwald (ear's north american distributor) tim's big on the circuit over the parts and one of the big little quirkisms is the not rolling tubes part of his philosophy, but then again his reputation is of a *ahem* quirky character.

one of the great de Paravicini-isms was an alleged comment he made stating that using one of his circuits with lower quality parts would maintain its overall character and outperform much of the market and specific part selection wasn't nearly as big of a deal as conventional thought. then again i'm running amprex white labels in my 834p and think there's a very significant increase in performance from the stock tubes
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