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Darkvoice just released 332 - Page 4

post #46 of 1888
Hi Godkin,

A quick question, I live in the UK as well, (not that far from you, in west London), I understand that you got your 332 off ebay, all the ebay 332's I have come across come with a 220v power supply, are they safe to run on 240v? is there anything in particular one needs doing to run them safely over here?

Thanks
post #47 of 1888
I'll answer for Godkin. He had no issues at all with the power.
post #48 of 1888
Hi spacemanspliff,

I would have thought that having a higher voltage than rated would generate more heat and shorten the working life of the components.

To Godkin,

Was your unit shipped from France or China? and how was it labeled for customs? did you have to pay any import duty on it?
post #49 of 1888
Quote:
Originally Posted by budgetphile View Post
Hi spacemanspliff,

I would have thought that having a higher voltage than rated would generate more heat and shorten the working life of the components.
You raise a good point here I have noticed with a few 220v amps when running on the 240 volt mains they tend to get a little to hot (in my opinion) and I have also noticed excessive transformer hum. As an experiment I tried hooking up one of the amps to a fairly hefty Variable transformer I had lying around. With the amp hooked up to this and with the voltage set to 220v I noticed the transformer hum all but disappeared, which hints running at 240v was driving the mains transformer into saturation. The other thing I noticed was running at 220v made the amplifier run far cooler. I took the transformer cover off and tried running at both 240v and 220v for a set amount of time. Running at 220v the transformer got very warm which is normal. Running at 240v I noticed the transformer got very hot so much so I couldn’t hold my finger on it for more than a second again suggesting running at 240v is driving the transformer in to saturation.

Because of this I now run all of my 220-volt amps off of the Variable transformer that is hidden away in my loft. As a plus they seem to sound better to my ears!
post #50 of 1888
Hi Budgetphile,

No problems with the 220v - runs perfectly, and safely. Nothing else needed, although the supplied power cord (Spacemanspiff and I have already talked about this) is sh*t, so make sure you have a spare one handy, preferably a good quality one - this amp really appreciates it (I use the QED Conduit).

My 332 was shipped direct from China. No problems with customs, no import duties to pay.

Creeky's conclusions very much support my experiences with the 332. No hum. No excessive heating - just what you'd expect from a tube amp.

Today saw me fighting against temptation. I tried to resist fitting the SVETLANA 6S19P-Bs, but lost the battle about three hours ago. Can't say much at the minute, but initial impressions very good. No hum anyway - velvety black backgrounds. Lovely looking valve (not that aesthetics matter) but much brighter. Better built as well - twice as heavy as the stock valve.
post #51 of 1888
Thanks Godkin, so what's the most satisfying driver/ front tube combination you've come across so far?

I am starting to get seriously twitchy, the only cure I know is to get myself a 332.

Btw, were did you get the power cable from?
post #52 of 1888
Quote:
Originally Posted by budgetphile View Post
Hi Godkin,

A quick question, I live in the UK as well, (not that far from you, in west London), I understand that you got your 332 off ebay, all the ebay 332's I have come across come with a 220v power supply, are they safe to run on 240v? is there anything in particular one needs doing to run them safely over here?

Thanks
I have a DV 336 that I use in the UK, and so far so good. It runs completely silently, so I am not aware of a transformer problem. I am aware that the UK voltage may shorten the lives of the valves because they are probably being over-run. I'm not an electronic engineer, but I think the issue for valve life is the valve heater voltage, which I think should be 6.3v, and the power dissipation of the heaters is proportional to the square of the voltage, so 10% over voltage is 21% worse. I keep meaning to measure the voltage that is being applied to the heaters to see what the situation is, but I haven't got around to doing it.

I also have a Shanling CD player to which the same considerations apply.

The question of the transformer being run into saturation is new to me.
post #53 of 1888
So this 332 uses the same power tubes as my ld2++ ??
post #54 of 1888
Not much experience with tube amps, mainly sold state or hybids. Have had MF X-CANS V2s and V3s, but, to me, this little amp blows them out of the water. I've extensively modded my V3 (caps changed throughout, better tubes, resistors, even Paper-in-Oil capacitors in the output stage) and still this little amp is better, although the differences are more subtle. If the 332 has a fault, it is that it it too revealing (at least with the present compliment of tubes: 2xM8100s and 2x6S19P-Bs), and could ruthlessly expose a bad recording or an inadequate source.

DennyL may be right - tube life may be shortened. But replacements are so cheap (at least at the minute) that it doesn't really matter. The SVETLANAs I'm running right now, the 6S19P-Bs (the improved, mil-spec version of the standard 6S19) are very durable, long-life types, and I got 10 of them for £9.59. The output tubes are also widely available, and again cheap. 5 Mullard M8100s, again a mil-spec, high quality equivalent of the 6J1, for £2.59. (this tube again has a long-life - about 10,000 hrs.) I would advise anyone looking for these tubes to look for the equivalents: look for 6J1s and you simply get the Communist Block version of this tube - 6J1P or the 6J1P-EV. Look for the many western equivalents: 5654 (W), the 6AK5 (W), EF95, M8100, CV4010, 6F32, etc, etc.

The 332 is extremely powerful, and can drive higher impedance cans, like the SENNHEISER HD650s, with ease. I can barely listen to this amp above 2 on the volume control without the fear that my ear drums will explode.

The QED Conduit can be picked up at most good electrical shops or on the internet. Brilliant cable for the money (approx £35-£40) - well worth it.

I think you're right, the LITTLE DOT 2++ does share its power tubes with the 332 - the 6S19 (the English designation of the Russian 6C19). Smaller tubes, however, are different - the EF92 (CV138) I think.

P.S. Budgetphile, don't twitch anymore, seek the cure before it's too late!!!
post #55 of 1888
DennyL, Godkin seems to have found a cure for my twitch, I will be ordering a 332 in the next couple of days, maybe once I receive it and get to use it for a while, we can get together and compare the 332 and the 336?

Godkin, for the life of me I cannot find anything that makes much sense when I do a google search for "QED conduit", could you be more precise?
post #56 of 1888
Budgetphile, any good internet hifi cables shop should sell the Conduit.

Here's a few places I check out if I'm looking for a quality interconnect:

www.hificables.co.uk (QED Conduit 1.5m, £36.00)
www.cable-shop.co.uk (QED Conduit 1.5m, £36.00)
www.hificablesandaccessories.co.uk (QED Conduit 1.5m, £34.50)

The cheapest I've seen it is:

www.audiovisualonline.co.uk (QED Conduit 1.5m, £32.99)

The site's a bitch to navigate. Just go to the search engine on the right hand side of the screen and type in "QED."

None of the above include postage and delivery - watch you don't get fleeced.
post #57 of 1888
Ah, it's QED Qonduit Power Cord.
post #58 of 1888
Thanks Godkin, I just ordered a cable from audiovisualonline, they have a special post free offer on goods over £10, later on in the day I will place my order for a 332, which has been an epic undertaking that involved contacting several suppliers, whose responses, or lack off, varied as did their prices and specs, more on this later once I receive the goods.

While I am at it, how was the quality of the audio cables that came with the 332? do you have any particular recommendations in this department?
post #59 of 1888
Good on you, man. You won't be disappointed. The 332 is a real cracker. You could maybe start searching out replacement tubes. The stock tubes are good, but they're so many better ones out there.

No interconnects come with the 332 - only the power cord and you know what I think of that. Personally, I use VAN DEN HUL THE WELL interconnects. Really good, very open and detailed, with good bass.
post #60 of 1888
The SVETLANA 6S19P-Bs and PHILIPS/MULLARD M8100s (Black-plates) up and running, and sounding great.





I can heartily recommend this tube set-up in the 332. Sounds fantastic, noticeably better, in my opinion, than the stock tubes. Much more atmosphere, bags of presence and realism, the timbre of instruments particularly good. In short, all the benefits of a tube amp but with few of the disadvantages - no soggy bass with the 332, instead it is deep, powerful and articulate. The best bass I've heard on a headphone amp. Still more experimentation to be done, but I could live quite happily with this compliment of tubes - forever.

As I've said already, the only "fault" with the 332, as it is set up now, is that it is too detailed (not really a fault for me) and could expose a bad recording or source. For example, I've listened to Marianelli's score for the film "Pride and Prejudice" many times, but with the 332 you can hear everything, little background movements in the room, even the pianist's feet moving the petals. It also reveals that the disc is rather poorly recorded. But, as I said, this is a virtue not a vice because it adds authenticity to the listening of music.

Today a rather worrying thought stuck me: if DARKVOICE made the 337 by sandwiching two 336s together, then what if they decide to join two 332s together and make a 334 or something. No, that thought is not worrying at at - it's delightful and somewhat awe-inspiring.
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