i would hope that the RCA black/grey plates sound a lot better than the RCA/JAN black plates - because the latter sounded awfully muddled in the mids, and while they were really "tube" sounding they didn't have the clarity of the 6080s which are are pretty "tube" sounding in their own right. both tubes i agree sound more "tube" sounding than the 5998s though i still prefer those over what i've heard so far.
Oh bollocks....just received my NOS G.E.C 6080 black-plates. Unfortunately the base is a little too wide; a little frustrating given as the socket is labelled 6080
The pins go in, but not all the way; probably around 50-70%. I assume this is unsafe and may damage the tube and/or amp? Anyone know where to get some decent octal socket extenders (or socket savers I believe they are called)?
Yes, the socket sits at a countersunk level to the cutout as seen below:
I just measured with an electronic vernier: the depth of the countersink is ~4.48mm; the entire pin length is around 10.8mm, but they are about a millimeter countersunk to the brown base, if you know what I mean. So from flush with brown base to end of pin is ~9.8mm. Also as you can see in the photo I posted above, the brown base is flat on the perimeter of the cutout, so the pins are not exposed to the elements (or sticky fingers )
Jack tells me my WA2 should ship out tomorrow, and it just has to make it from Queens to Manhattan.
Just wanted to let everyone know you should be seeing external/internal/tube glowing pictures soon as well as some preliminary impressions. Don't expect me to comment on the sound too much until I've had a couple weeks with the amp, though.
Also, I have 5998s, Bugle Boy 6DJ8s, and late '40s Amperex Holland 6V4s ready to roll. But again, I won't switch over to them until I'm familiar with the stock sound.
A little later down the road, you'll also get to hear what the WA2 makes of the new HD800s. Couldn't resist the temptation of my brand new high-power OTL amp combined with a new reference-class 300-ohm headphone, so I'm in on Headroom's first batch of pre-orders. I figure with the WA2, GS1000s, HD650s, and HD800s, I should be good for a while.
EDIT: Also, at this point I would like to give Jack props for quoting a build time to a customer and making it happen. This should be a foregone conclusion when buying a high-priced niche item such as this, but as we have seen time and again from other businesses, it seems to be the exception rather than the rule. I can't believe some of these other builders continue to have people make purchases with them, when they say something like 8 weeks (a long time already), and instead deliver in 6+ months (if ever). Granted, I don't have my amp just yet, but Jack quoted me a 4 week build time at the time of purchase, and if it does indeed ship tomorrow, it will mark 4 weeks and 1 day. Since I ordered it in the evening, and it probably needs to have been finished today in order to ship tomorrow, the build time for my amp was 3 weeks and 6 days. I'm just sayin...
Anyone hear/know anything about 6H13C tubes for the WA2? Jack has suggested using them with the WA2 if using K701 headphones, because the tubes output more power apparently. However, Jack hasn't responded to multiple e-mails asking if they improve the sound. Anyone know?
JayG, you're right about Jack's scheduling. My WA2 was shipped a day before the 4-week estimate he gave back in December.
It arrived yesterday, well packed, as everyone has mentioned. And absolutely beautiful - black. I got to admire it for a while as it returned to room temperature after riding around in the below zero chill we're experiencing in Vermont.
GE 6080 / Philips JAN 6922 / International Servicemaster (???) 6V4.
Very initial impression: even the break-period is going to be a blast. Detail and soundstage were impressive in the first minutes, and over three or four hours of listening, highs began to fill out. The Hoquetus cd by the Theatre of Voices was magical - vocal lines, spatial definition, tone color, DETAIL.