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Woo WA22 - Page 8

post #106 of 322

MINI-Review: Woo WA22

I had the WA22 prototype here for two weeks for the Colorado meet, while jack took the first production model to the NJ meet that same weekend. It had a pair of RCA 12AU7, Sophia Princess 274b rectifier, and a pair of Sylvania 7236. And I compared it to my WA6 and EC ZDT.

I hooked up the WA22 to my PS Audio DLIII via XLR out with anti-cables interconnects, and my WA6 via PS Audio RCA out with anti-cables RCA interconnects. I used HD600, HD800, K1000 and woodied D2000 with 4-pin XLR, with a single ended adapter so I could listen to both amps with the same phones. I also used Grado HF-2 and woodied D7000 single ended with both amps.

Compared to my maxed WA6 (with PDPS and Sophia Princess 274b rectifier and a pair of RCA 6DE7) the WA22 had a bigger and wider soundstage with more depth as well, and better channel separation, with gobs more power - even single ended it was better. Dynamics were great, and it never seemed to run out of power with everything but the K1000.

Moving from the WA22 to the WA6 resulted in the sound becoming more forward and narrower. Interestingly the WA6 sounded great until compared with the WA22, and the tonal balance and detail of the two amps was very similar. It was mostly in the soundstage, separation and power where the WA22 ruled. The WA6 cannot begin to pretend to drive the K1000 though. The WA22 was also very close to my Eddie Current ZDT, except the ZDT was clearly better with K1000 and slightly better with D2000. With Grado HF-2 and LA7000 the WA22 and ZDT became closer in sound quality again.

I was very impressed with the WA22 prototype, and for a while considered selling my WA6 to get one, but in the end the WA6 still makes a good amp for the bedroom since the ZDT gets too hot to keep in there.
post #107 of 322
Thanks for the review HPA, I have the same exact WA6 setup as you from the tubes down to the DAC and I've been wanting to go balanced for quite some time so I'm glad to hear that the WA22 sounds significantly better in your/my setup. Do you have any idea on how big of a difference the tube upgrades would make? I already have the 274b rectifier, but I'm real curious about those Shugang Treasure driver tubes, if they are worth the money or not. Anyways, hopefully Jack will start shipping within the next few weeks and then I can jump on board the balanced bandwagon.
post #108 of 322
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toad View Post
Thanks for the review HPA, I have the same exact WA6 setup as you from the tubes down to the DAC and I've been wanting to go balanced for quite some time so I'm glad to hear that the WA22 sounds significantly better in your/my setup. Do you have any idea on how big of a difference the tube upgrades would make? I already have the 274b rectifier, but I'm real curious about those Shugang Treasure driver tubes, if they are worth the money or not. Anyways, hopefully Jack will start shipping within the next few weeks and then I can jump on board the balanced bandwagon.
I don't know what to say about tube rolling in the WA22. How a tube sounds in one amp may not roll over to another. I think now you'd be looking for a pair of 6SN7, and a pair of 6080 or 7236, to go along with your Sophia.

For 6SN7 tubes I got some experience with them in my DV336i amp, and with my HD600 I liked the Sylvania VT-231 and RCA grey glass VT-231, or the Sylvania "bad boy". The JAN CRC RCA 5692 red base or Hytron 5692 brown base were smoother and less sparkly but very nice to pair with bright phones and Grados.

The 336i could also use 6080 tubes in the rear (or 6AS7G or 5998). The 6080 tubes in the 336i tended to sound more solid state with less bass and warmth. The Tung Sol 5998 was just about perfect being more dynamic and powerful with strong tight bass, with an JAN CRC RCA 6AS7G black plate being close behind but with a little less gain and a little less control.

My only experience with the Sylvania 7236 was with Jack's prototype amp.
post #109 of 322
Hi guys. Just to confirm, can the WA22 have tubes rolled as in the WA2 and WA6/SE? That is, for power tubes being able to use 6080/6AS7/6AS7G/7236/5998 etc. and for the rectifier being able to use the 5AR4/5U4G/5V4G/274B etc?

Cheers
post #110 of 322
Thanks for the mini review HPA, always appreciate your side of the story
post #111 of 322
My WA22 just arrive today.





Bad pics 'cause take by my phone.
post #112 of 322
Wow, is it a Sophia sitting in the center? A very nice amp, indeed, tempting me to swap into tube balanced.
post #113 of 322
Wow...congrat!!

I'll get mine next week.
post #114 of 322
looks BEAUTIFUL! congrats
post #115 of 322
Quote:
Originally Posted by rurika View Post
My WA22 just arrive today.





Bad pics 'cause take by my phone.
Sweet!!!
post #116 of 322
Quote:
Originally Posted by rurika View Post
My WA22 just arrive today.
Beautiful amp! How does it sound?
post #117 of 322
yes and can you compare it to any other balanced amps?
post #118 of 322
Well ..

This is my 1st balanced amp so I can't compare to others & now I use only single end 'cause I haven't balanced cables yet.

All I can say is this amp control sound very good.

Sorry but I can't complain to much because English is not my native language.
post #119 of 322
Just to confirm, can you use the balanced outputs even if you have a SE-only source? (that is, RCA inputs and balanced output)
post #120 of 322
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
Just to confirm, can you use the balanced outputs even if you have a SE-only source? (that is, RCA inputs and balanced output)
yes
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