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Apex Peak/Volcano Review - Page 4

post #46 of 396
Quote:
Originally Posted by achristilaw View Post

Yeah, it was doing the same thing as a Headphone Amp for me also......Quite natural and alive sounding with the Audez'e. One of the single best Audez'e amps I have heard! It's about a balance of bandwidth with Natures speed that few amps achieve. I'm hooked!


How is your Leben comparing with the Apex?

post #47 of 396
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Addict View Post

I have been listening tonight with my T1 and the experience is similar to last night.

I will say if I only the stock tube, I don't think I would be this positive. I would suggest a much better tube be included in the beginning.


Yup, that is the case with any supplied tube today...you need options! Rolling is done once burn-in is finished (the "stock" tube is good for that). Lots and lots of 6SN7 options....I got most of them!

 

Todd and Pete need a good supply of something that is available for everyday, rolling is up to the new owners!
 

post #48 of 396
Quote:
Originally Posted by TigzStudio View Post




How is your Leben comparing with the Apex?


Both are equal in quality of playback offered. The Leben has an edge in being Rod Serling and taking you and dropping you off in the Twilight Zone. It's a space and time machine.....incredible with right tubes (source and material have a hand also)! The Peak offers much of the same space and has a slight (read: very slight) advantage of spank and drive with the Audez'e. Flip a coin! Your a winner either direction!!

 

When you have heard the Audez'e properly powered....fugedaboutit....

post #49 of 396

wish someone would show up with this amp at the POrtland meet. Would love to see what Pete's come up with.

 

Tigz, love the new avatar..lol

post #50 of 396
Quote:
Originally Posted by sachu View Post

wish someone would show up with this amp at the POrtland meet. Would love to see what Pete's come up with.

 

Tigz, love the new avatar..lol


"Agent Orange" gets all the Girls!
 

post #51 of 396

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by achristilaw View Post




Both are equal in quality of playback offered. The Leben has an edge in being Rod Serling and taking you and dropping you off in the Twilight Zone. It's a space and time machine.....incredible with right tubes (source and material have a hand also)! The Peak offers much of the same space and has a slight (read: very slight) advantage of spank and drive with the Audez'e. Flip a coin! Your a winner either direction!!

 

When you have heard the Audez'e properly powered....fugedaboutit....

 


Very interesting! Thanks for the insight.  Apex might be next on the list after I listen to the v181.  


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sachu View Post

wish someone would show up with this amp at the POrtland meet. Would love to see what Pete's come up with.

 

Tigz, love the new avatar..lol

 

Haha, thanks.  Snapped the pic this morning, I felt it was time for a change.  There is so much personality in that one picture :)
 

post #52 of 396

No LP listening today unfortunately, While everything is dead silent with the digital, as soon as I turn on the F-117, a loud hum surfaces in the system.  I disconnected and reconnected the cables from the HRX to the F-117 and from the F-117 to the Peak but to no avail.  I changed the cable out from the F-117 to the Peak, no impact.  I verified the ground cable from the HRX to the F-117 was not loose but no change.  I am not sure what is causing the hum.  The F-117 runs off its battery so it is not introducing any ground loop.  Last weekend through the Stealth I didn't have any problems.  I even tried using input 1 or 2 on the Peak for the F-117 but still nothing changed.  

 

Oh well, with the short timeframe, I am going to go ahead and just listen using the PS Audio Perfect Wave Transport and the corresponding Perfect Wave DAC now.  I have swapped out tubes from the 1950s Sylvania Chrome Dome to a Pope 6SN7.

 

http://www.upscaleaudio.com/Pope-6SN7GT_p_105.html

 

Since I also have a AES DJH AE-3 purchased from Upscale Audio back in 2001, I had purchased a pair of these several years ago for this preamp.  This tube matches beautifully with this preamp.  Unfortunately you can no longer purchase this tube.  I thought I would go ahead and give it try anyway as it is a wonderful tube.  

 

The Peak does sound fantastic with the Pope.  I have been listening to "The Very Best of Chicago, Only The Beginning" and everything I heard the other evening is just several notches higher.  The horns extension and unity are amazing.  I really don't recall this level of extension from this recording.  The soundstage has a very large width to it.  You can really differentiate the vocals at the front of the stage.  The percussion is very tight and at the back of the stage where they should be.  I would agree with others who have commented that this tube is extremely musical rather than analytical.  While the detail is there, it just envelops you with the music.  I think the term the comments have suggested the Pope is extremely 3 dimensional.

 

As I think about the characteristics of the Pope, you almost forget that it is the Peak that brings out all these attributes of this tube.  The Peak basically allows you to listen without adding anything to the music itself;  While this may sound easy, it is not that easy to do in practice, especially at the Peak's price point.  The Peak definitely gets a thumbs up in this category.

 

Overall, the sonics of the Peak are excellent.  I won't comment on the cosmetics or the value as those are individual preferences.  

post #53 of 396

 I love the chameleon capabilities when you drop in your favorite 6SN7! You can alter flavor to sample a different palette, or experiment and find a tone type for specific Music.

 

 Many devices that use valve's can do this, but the very neutral transistor output of the Peak makes for a blank canvas, hence the color is left up to the valve maker and type. You can really explore the subtleties and differences in your valve collection. It is a hybrid in every sense...best of both...the traditional weakness of neither.


Edited by achristilaw - 8/14/10 at 4:43pm
post #54 of 396
Quote:
Originally Posted by achristilaw View Post




I hate gain switches..adds complexities to the circuit (and noise potential)...Each Peak/Volcano will be made on a case by case basis...perhaps you could order a specific gain for a specific purpose. I like the high gain for the Audez'e....


If you say the high gain suits the Audez's well, then I'd be reluctant to mess with it-  owning the same cans as you.  Point taken about switches adding complexity.
 

post #55 of 396

thanks for the impressions ken

post #56 of 396

Hey Steve - is the F-117 near to the Apex physically?  The F-117 is a silent runner unless it is in close physical proximity to a large transformer - that will cause it to hum significantly.  Just a thought.

post #57 of 396

It is at the back of the shelf with the VPI SDS which is on the shelf above the power supplies for the Peak and Stealth.  I might be able to slide it below the myrtle shelf the HRX is on and give it another shot.

 

Thanks for the suggestion.

post #58 of 396

I just moved the F-117 to below the HRX and low and behold absolutely dead silence.  I have Joni Mitchell "Blue" playing right now as I post.  I am listening with my T1 rather than using speakers but there is no comparison to the digital I listened yesterday with the PWT/PWD setup. Of course, there is something about the price differential that could be causing a little of the differences.

 

The soundstage just surrounds you with the the T1s.  The naturalness, the extension and the detail in her voice is amazing.  You can really make out each individual guitar string as it is played.  Obviously the Peak / Volcano is letting the source comes through as they were intended.  

 

Thanks for the suggestion Rob. 


Edited by Audio Addict - 8/15/10 at 6:18pm
post #59 of 396
Glad to be of help :)
post #60 of 396

I shipped the Peak / Volcano back to Todd today as it worked out better for me to get it done today rather than over the next week. 

 

I did get a chance to spend a few more hours the past couple of evenings listening but this time using the Treasure CV 181Z.  I will say that I enjoyed the time immensely.  This is a very nice tube and again like Allan said, it really lets the character of the tube shine through.  I would strongly recommend anyone looking at the Peak to not settle for the $15-$25 new production tubes but to invest in a better tube.  I talked with Todd and he is also looking into selling the Sophia 6SN7 if it sounds great with the Peak.  Between that tube and the Treasure, some great sounding new production tubes are available.  Of course for those who have extensive NOS 6SN7 collections, any of those will probably sound great in the Peak as well. 

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