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Crack;Bottlehead OTL - Page 261

post #3901 of 5900

Yup.  That's the way it is intended to be done.  

post #3902 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by roguegeek View Post

It looks like a lot of fun, so I'm going to order a kit no matter what just to play around with. If I were to order it, I want to do the Speedball upgrade right away. Would purchasing the kit and the upgrade together still allow me to build the unit without the upgrade? The reason I'm asking is because I want to build the Crack in its stock form so I can see what the stock signature sounds like before moving to the Speedball upgrade at a later date.
Of course, and it's recommended that way anyways. Helps isolate which part you screwed up on as well.
post #3903 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
 

Yup.  That's the way it is intended to be done.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post


Of course, and it's recommended that way anyways. Helps isolate which part you screwed up on as well.

 

Gotcha. I was just making sure that if you order it together, they aren't automatically removing some parts that may be needed for the base kit, but aren't needed with the Speedball. The price is slightly cheaper when you order it together.

post #3904 of 5900

lol I can't even remember what stock Crack sounds like anymore. All my builds except the very first a couple of years ago have had the Speedball installed in the get-go. Just be aware that installing the Speedball after the fact does require some unsoldering and dismantling of a few components. Nothing too crazy, though.

 

Even with Speedball, I did hear a noticeable improvement upgrading the output tube to a Tung-Sol 5998. Worth every penny IMO, and a highly recommended upgrade to anyone wanting to get the most mileage and versatility out of their Crack. Simply sublime with the HD 650.

post #3905 of 5900
When I had Crack I really enjoyed 5998 paired with Syllvania 8514 which I still have for sale
post #3906 of 5900

Hey guys, I'm about to get a Crack and have a quick question. I'm using an Aune T1 with an Amperex OG 7308 tube right now. From my quick googling, it looks like the 7308 isn't compatible, so what tubes (around or under $100) would you guys suggest with the Crack as an upgrade, mainly focusing on soundstage?

 

Also, is the Aune fine as a DAC, or would that be something that I should look into upgrading later?

post #3907 of 5900

Doc, the new Bottlehead website looks great! Nicely done.

post #3908 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc B. View Post

The amp is designed for continuous operation. The heaters in the tubes slowly lose their emissive coating over time. Figure about 5000 hours lifetime for the 6080 and 10,000 for the 12AU7. The electrolytic capacitors may need replacement at around 10,000 hours too. We have had a few of our older kits come in for service (maybe 15+ years old) that ran the capacitors much harder than in the Crack and some of them needed a cap replaced.

10,000 hours is very roughly 5 years running for 8 hours per workday (like at your office workstation) or 20 years running a couple hours an evening after work.

Re the question about HD800s and Crack - it works great. If you're going to buy $1500 headphones, I'd suggest really doing right by them and matching them to the Mainline. It's even more betterer.

That life span for the parts combined is insane, I know some parts in graphic cards, motherboards etc that arnt even rated for that long eek.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by skeptic View Post

Hey AJ - yes 250 ohm dt880s sound great with the crack. I tend to prefer Senns most days, as a matter of subjective preference, but could live very happily with my dt880's regardless. They are an excellent pairing.

Ah cool biggrin.gif, just wasnt sure coz there only 250 ohm and most of you guys seem to run 600 ohm

Got another question tongue.gif, are there any combo of tubes that make the crack sound as natural and neutral as possible?
Edited by Aussiejuggalo - 2/25/14 at 3:57pm
post #3909 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acknown3 View Post
 

Hey guys, I'm about to get a Crack and have a quick question. I'm using an Aune T1 with an Amperex OG 7308 tube right now. From my quick googling, it looks like the 7308 isn't compatible, so what tubes (around or under $100) would you guys suggest with the Crack as an upgrade, mainly focusing on soundstage?

 

Also, is the Aune fine as a DAC, or would that be something that I should look into upgrading later?

 

The Aune will do well as your Crack's DAC :tongue_smile:, but you will get better results with a better DAC in the future.

 

I really like the Mullard 6080WA and either Mullard ECC82 (super warm combo) or RCA Cleartop 12AU7 (more neutral combo) for a well-priced set. The Mallards have a really solid, almost holographic presentation that I loved from a staging perspective. Just beware though that Mullard + Mullard can be too thick and warm for some setups.

post #3910 of 5900
I would use 5998 and 8514A from Sylvania or GE
post #3911 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by trentrosa View Post
 

Doc, the new Bottlehead website looks great! Nicely done.

Thank you. The bulk of the credit goes to the guys at Helix Creative. We've been on the web for so long that they had to scrape through 18 years of waxy buildup to get down to the useful bits and rebuild the site from there. Now that we have it up I can say that this was not a trivial job, construction started last August. Aside from a last minute glitch regarding service providers, root level access, zoning and domain ownership on Friday that resulted in my having a nosebleed (literally) it all went pretty smoothly. I'm really thrilled that most of the new site is Wordpress based and thus very easy to update. We have a few more bugs to work out but we are about 99% functional. Look for a jump in performance in the next few days as we get set up with our CDN.

post #3912 of 5900

My favorite tubes have been the 5998 and one of the E80cc tubes. Latey Ive been using a NOS Phillips Miniwatt SQ tube which I love.  I will be listing an extra that I have on the for sale forum this week.

post #3913 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acknown3 View Post
 

Hey guys, I'm about to get a Crack and have a quick question. I'm using an Aune T1 with an Amperex OG 7308 tube right now. From my quick googling, it looks like the 7308 isn't compatible, so what tubes (around or under $100) would you guys suggest with the Crack as an upgrade, mainly focusing on soundstage?

 

Also, is the Aune fine as a DAC, or would that be something that I should look into upgrading later?

you will be fine with that set up ,I'm using Aune T1 with Crack and love it and you don't need " better DAC" -Aune T1 do very well with Amperex +[Crack]GEC 6AS7G A1834 Round Base here ,I found 5998 to be lacking some detail on Crack (more evident on Crack vs DV336SE I own)

post #3914 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by spacequeen7 View Post
 

you will be fine with that set up ,I'm using Aune T1 with Crack and love it and you don't need " better DAC" -Aune T1 do very well with Amperex +[Crack]GEC 6AS7G A1834 Round Base here ,I found 5998 to be lacking some detail on Crack (more evident on Crack vs DV336SE I own)

Finally! Someone with Aune T1 and Crack. I use 6DJ8 single leg... So, what else DAC you compared with? Are you saying better DAC is the same with Aune T1? My Crack+balls will shipped to me next week. And I can't wait it anymore...

post #3915 of 5900
Quote:
Originally Posted by diaBoliQu3 View Post
 

Finally! Someone with Aune T1 and Crack. I use 6DJ8 single leg... So, what else DAC you compared with? Are you saying better DAC is the same with Aune T1? My Crack+balls will shipped to me next week. And I can't wait it anymore...

 

Although I don't own an Aune T1 like @spacequeen7 I have spent some time with the T1 and can confirm that it is a very good DAC (esp. for the price), but there are other DACs that are significantly better - they're just also significantly more expensive... You'll find that upgrading your DAC will make a difference to the sound from the Crack. The following is from the Bottlehead Discussion Thread (http://www.head-fi.org/t/683012/bottlehead-amplifier-discussion-comparison-thread-crack-sex-mainline) from my comparison reviews of the Crack, S.E.X., and Mainline. I was blown away by how good the Crack could sound with a high end DAC. Although I upgraded from an Audio-gd NFB-5.2 rather than an Aune T1, I would say they are on par (having listened to both) although the T1 is probably a little more neutral.

 

Quote:

DAC Upgrade Update - 27th October 2013

A recent upgrade to my DAC has brought some very interesting changes.

 

The new DAC is a Matrix X-Sabre based on the very detailed ES9018 Sabre DAC chip. The extra separation and clarity offered by this DAC (compared to the previous Audio-gd NFB-5.2) has brought the Crack (with Speedball) very close to the S.E.X. in terms of overall sound performance. It's so close now that I could actually be completely happy with either amp when driving the Beyerdynamic T1s. For lower impedance cans, the S.E.X. is still the only choice due to the Crack's high output impedance, but with high impedance Beyerdynamic or Sennheiser cans I would probably choose the Crack simply because it is cheaper and still excellent.

 

I think the key to this change is the signature of the DACs. The NFB-5.2 was slightly warmer than the X-Sabre. The X-Sabre is still musical, but a little closer to neutral than the NFB-5.2. The result is a cleaner sound from the Crack - still warm and rich, but not smoothed over at all. The S.E.X. can sound a little dry at times in comparison which makes the Crack a bit more seductive - it soothes the ears with detailed, mellow tunes while the S.E.X. presents oodles of details and clarity, but isn't always soothing.

 

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