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Tube headphone amp kit for $25!?

post #1 of 213
Thread Starter 
Raytheon JAN6418 Valve (Tube) Preamplifier / Headphone Amp Kit

I saw this awhile back but never had the guts to try. Well I finally pulled the trigger for two and the kits arrived yesterday. Well long story short, got it soldered up, set up two together for balance, burned in for 12 hrs. and I have to say maybe the best amp I've heard so far. It may just be the balance set up but man I'm loving it.

For under $100: two kits, XLRs, cheap chassis and viola, battery powered, transportable, balance tube amp.

Two Problem I ran into. Need more tube dampeners these little tubes ring like tuning forks from hell, high pitch but low volume. May need a metal chassis because I am picking up interference.

As you can see the board and the tubes are very small.
post #2 of 213
How does it sound with just one? This might be a nice beginner DIY kit.
post #3 of 213
What's the output power? Any idea on the supported impedances?

This looks really cool for the price. Looks like a cool project for someone that works in miniature. Someone needs to make a tiny wood case and make it look like a shrunken Bottlehead.
post #4 of 213
Thread Starter 
I was so eager to try out the balance theory that I never tried running it SE. I have no idea what the specs are so I was a little worried when ordering it. I did email the article's author to ask about that. All he said was the stock opamp is fine for headphones. Turns out, the output is very loud. Can easily drive my HD600 or CD3000.
post #5 of 213
I'm kind of interested in this, especially as a basic/intro balanced amplifier.

Would you mind posting a few pictures of your build?
post #6 of 213
I 2nd the pics. I'm interested in building one as well.
post #7 of 213
What amps have you heard to compare this to? I don't ask this in a sarcastic tone but want to know what to compare the sound to that I may have heard.
post #8 of 213
Thread Starter 
No offense taken. My experience is not much. No balance amps. Best SE amp I had and sold is the Rudistor NX-03. I Like NAD integrated amps. Only tube has been the Lunch Box II and a DIY Aaron Van Waarde design. Also a hand full of small desktop and portables.
I will take some pictures tonight.
post #9 of 213
Thread Starter 
Pictures are up
post #10 of 213
wow, very cool little kit.

How was service and shipping to USA? I might have to grab a few of these.
post #11 of 213
Thanks for posting the pics, sunneebear. That's a nice clean build you have, I like the case.

Do you, or anyone else, know how to set it up to run from a power outlet instead of batteries, assuming that it's even possible (for a reasonable price)?
post #12 of 213
there is improvement by replacing the PT2308L with OPA627.
post #13 of 213
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by vkung View Post
there is improvement by replacing the PT2308L with OPA627.
I think the PT2308 was used because of the low power consumption. Before I put the amp in the chassis, I ran it for 18hrs straight driving a HD600 at very loud volumes on one 9v battery. It didn't die at 18hrs, I just got impatient and put it in the box. For someone who wanted to make a portable battery operated amp, I think the original opamp would be ideal. A PSU would be a different story.
post #14 of 213
Awesome stuff. Will order one soon and hopefully build over the holidays. (Oh god, my build list is growing too quick. )

Thanks for sharing!
post #15 of 213
Just a FYI: postage is $7 all over Australia for up to 5 kits.
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