Well, this thread sunk to the bottom a LONG time ago, lol. I spent a long time away from this ridiculous and insane and expensive hobby, preferring to blow all my money on other frivolous pursuits, mainly collecting vintage Gillette razors and indulging in other shavanalia. In the intervening year and a half plus, I spent little time collecting and improving on my audio equipment, and stayed away from this board for my own mental health...
Until recently...more on that later.
Looking back over this thread, I am embarassed at some of my earlier, more naive impressions...it was a dive in headlong, with inexperience and exuberance. Everything was hyperbolic and AMAZING(!). From here on out, I'll be speaking less with the voice of a Head-Fi parrot (I read a lot less of what others have to say, unless it's something I'm interested in...no more trolling every thread, wishing I had bigger, better, more), and will try for a more careful and analytical approach.
So, first, the equipment changes since I last updated this thread...um...some feet, some dampers (as needed), an Isoclean fuse, and that's pretty much it. The biggest and best improvement to date came with having Jack Woo replace the stock caps with Black Gates. This brought a level of refinement, definition, separation, and detail that I didn't think this amp was capable of. Well worth the expense! Around that time (about a month or so ago) I also went off the deep end, and gave in to my long-repressed tube collecting desires, and picked up the following:
Tung-Sol 5998 - 1961 (to go with the two I had)
Tung-Sol 6520 - 1952 NOS x2
Tung-Sol 7236 - 1964, cryo treated (I wanted a spare...this was the floodgate opener)
GE 6AS7G - 1948, clear top, copper radiators
RCA 6AS7G - 1950's, black plates, bottom getters
Amperex E88CC/6922 - 1959 (*9K), Hicksville NY production, D getters, PQ Shield label, matched pair x2
Amperex PCC88/7DJ8 - 1968, Heerlen Holland production, Valvo/BWB labels, matched quad
Mullard ECC88/6DJ8 - 1966 (B6B3), Blackburn UK production, IEC labels, matched pair
Siemens & Halske CCa - 1961 (A0 1≠ 2K), Munich production, matched pair
Voskhod 6N1P - 1978, Kaluga City production, Russian Milsurp x8
As you can see, by today's rates this was not a cheap mania, especially those CCa's and those Valvo and Amperex PQ quads. All of them are awesome sounding tubes, all offering their own take on amplification. There were some suprises, but none were misses. If I had been more careful earlier on I would have done things differently, but this time I did my homework, price be damned. No, I didn't commit commercial suicide, but I spent way more than I ever intended to, lol.
I'm not going to go into every possible permutation and combination of each and every tube option, but instead, if there is interest in a specific tube or combination that you would like to know more about, by all means ask, and I'll do the rolling and comparisons for you. Forget a lot that other crap I said earlier (most of it anyway)...I think I now have a much more solid footing (based in reality, lol).
Fact of the matter is that I never got around to writing up full reviews/impressions of most of those earlier tubes because most of them sucked, and I stuck with pretty much one set the whole time...TS 5998 & Siemens 7308. I could go into detail about the 6080WB, or others, but bottom line is they just were not all that great. Sure, the 7236 is a winner, and the Siemens 6922 is nice, but my tube taste has refined and I have new faves. I'll say this, for now: the 5998 is still king, and the CCa is all they are hyped up to be. Strangely enough, they )the CCa) are not my faves...but man, are they close.
Questions/thoughts/who cares Monkey?
Thanks for reading this far...
Edited by Golden Monkey - 10/30/10 at 2:28am