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Aune T1 USB Tube DAC+ SS Amp Discussion Thread ***See first post for FAQ--Updated on 02/14/15*** - Page 252

post #3766 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post
 


In one word "Yes". It does deliver a tube sound.

 

First. It is a SS amp and a SS DAC. A tube DAC would be the size of a bus. So all the solid state stuff does its job but exiting the DAC it uses the 6DJ8/6922 tube as a buffer and that is where the "tubey" sound comes from. As Coil pointed out, this is clearly evidenced by tube rolling. I myself in less than a week have tried 4 tubes, each distinctly unique in its presentation.

 

Also, I think I can speak to tubes...LOL

 

Vellmen amp welcoming the AUNE to the neighborhood

Hammond Organ amp converted

 

Coronado

 

Nice gear :)

 

I have a DAC (FiiO E18), so the LD or Vali could be a choice. But the all in one solution is quiet attractive, the Aune T1 looks better then the LD gear does...

 

As I can see you have some serious tube amps. How does the Aune T1 compares to them, not being a real tube amp?

Is a tube buffer enough in order to deliver tube sound, or does it come with a compromise?

post #3767 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post
 

Okay..that clarifies...so in your opinion as a DAC, its pretty damn nice...its the amp portion you don't think too highly of...so one could literally use the RCA out via RCA to 3.5 into one of these and out to headphones...LOL...

 

I do it with my Bravo V3. Basically the same, but with an EQ.

post #3768 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by BaTou069 View Post
 

 

Nice gear :)

 

I have a DAC (FiiO E18), so the LD or Vali could be a choice. But the all in one solution is quiet attractive, the Aune T1 looks better then the LD gear does...

 

As I can see you have some serious tube amps. How does the Aune T1 compares to them, not being a real tube amp?

Is a tube buffer enough in order to deliver tube sound, or does it come with a compromise?


Really hard to say. Let me explain...

 

My rig has been geared toward vinyl. The phono stage and preamp are solid state and they exit via the Velleman tube amp. The Velleman is sweet and very much taliorable by the swapping of 12AX7 input tubes (Mullard, RCA, GE, Sylvania) all unique.

 

Previously, my digital input was via CD or from my Surface Tablet (3.5mm jack out to RCA's) into the preamp. The Surface has an onboard DAC but the sound was "ok".

 

Now with the AUNE, I use the USB out on the Surface to the AUNE and then RCA out to the pre-amp. Amazing difference. Soundstage, clarity, nice forward mids...

 

Then playing with the tubes (really the stock tube is better than one expects) you can hear the differences the types offer. So here was my review of the first ones. NOTE - this applies to my system. Of course every systems will be a bit different (links in the chain) but definitively , yes a clean tube sound...

 

The Stock tube - 6922EH - New tube by Electro Harmonix - 3 1/2 stars (out of 5)

For a stock, new design tube, I have to say it has its merits. it has strong gain, very wide soundstage, brings the mid's into focus where they should be. The vocalist is present where they should be and clearly distinct in a 3D sort of way. The bottom is nice, not boomy but the top end, while detailed can be a bit fatiguing. I can say it is like an Audio Technica microline cart that hasn't broken in yet. Vaguely bordering on sibilant in that high upper range - not quite getting there but you almost expect it. For a stock new issue tube, not bad.

 

 

Vintage Amperex Tube 6GM8 / ECC86 - With Orange Globe and made in Herleen Holland - 1968 - 4 stars (or maybe 3.8 stars  This is one of the holy grail tubes, hard to find with the globe in this setup. More often it has a bugle boy on it (not BUGLE BOY tubes..long story). They can be expensive and I snagged this for $14.99 It is a fine sounding tube, very holographic with nice highs and mids. It takes the edginess off that was present in the 6922EH but without being rolled off. Bass is very deep...perhaps too deep. I could feel it which was nice but found myself wondering if it was a bit boomy. Certainly would not be describe as tight crisp bass. Sort of made me think my bottom end was replaced with some Cerwin Vega D9's. From what I have heard so far..I would almost (and did) give it 4 stars but more listening with other types move it down to 3. So much for one of the better recommended. This is where system variations truly dictate what is good for whom

 

Vintage Amperex PCC88 Tube (7DJ8) Holland - with Orange Globe Amperex Seam - 69-15 code - 5 Stars *****

Simply amazing at all levels - I don't have to say more. STRONG bass for you headphone listeners without being boomy. TOP RATING - Tied with the other 5 Star

 

6GM8 ECC86 Tube (GE Label marking) made in HOLLAND - Vintage 1963 - 4.25 Stars ****

This one made my eyes pop. It is not one that was advertised as remarkable, in fact, I don't see a lot of listing for it (Brent J doesn't) but I guess for me it is a best kept secret. From top to bottom, everything was detailed, in the right place with a wide holographic sound stage. The bass is where the Amperex SHOULD have been but was not, the vocals a pure joy as you could hear the vocalist at the mic. Vey nice, clear separation of instruments, nothing munged together. So far, my best tube. One note, it says MADE IN HOLLAND on it (factory lettering) but the CODES say it was made in Hamburg Germany. WWII was over in 1963, right ? LOL

 

Mullard 6GM8/ECC86 Coded- ~~D4A2 - 4.5 Stars **** *(revised)

I was excited to get my first Mullard in this series as I have come to expect good things. Now I have received TWO of these, same date code, same lot and never seen a socket. UPDATE - After over 40 hours break-in, I have completely revised my opinion. This is the tube Mullard is known for. Warm, velvet, detailed without being fatiguing. High's are sweet with no roll-off and bass is like comfy slippers. Soundstage is perfect and mids, nicely forward. It doesn't get the full 5 stars because I have heard a few tubes with just a tad more details but no one would ever be sorry buying this tube.

 

Sylvania . 6DJ8 ECC88 Halo Getter Yellow Lettering USA FB EFB - 4 Stars

Now this is more like it. Very nice tube. Beautiful soundstage, deep base but not boomy. Nice mid's. For under $10 shipped, this tube is beautiful. So why 4 stars ? Comparatively, the GE at 4.25 STARs still bests this one slightly with a bit more detail and a bit more forward in the mids, Still a beautiful tube and if I never heard the GE, this would be my #1. There is a smooth quality to it, velvety that I expected from the Mullard (but did not get). You would be crazy not to try one for a price in this range.

 

GE Labeled SIEMENS 6AQ8 ECC85 GERMANY - cant make out date code 5.0 Stars *****/

This bad boy is amazing, Soundstage impresses you immediately as does the detail. This and my other GE labeled tube will knock your socks off.  Would make anyone happy -this 6AQ8 which I think has a tad better soundstage (by a thumbnail) but also just a thumbnail less bass. . I listened to about 12 different type songs and could find no wrong EXCEPT some heavy metal tune by Nickelback and that may be the mastering, I need to check. But all other cuts, gorgeous. Vocals will make your head spin and take notice.

 

GE Labeled USA Made 6DJ8- Holy Cow  4.5 Stars ****/

who knew that a USA made GE from the 60's would be so good. Read everything about the Siemens above only subtract 1/2 star

 

Russian Voskhod 6N23P - 1986 vintage - Made for medical use (red tip) - 1 star

Unlike some very good SOVTEK, SVETLANA and others that are sturdy and have a decent sound quality, these were as dull and lifeless as they come. The soundstage was narrow and flat (no depth). I really have nothing positive to say except I am glad I only paid $9.00 for a pair. I'll sell them for $7.00 - any takers ? LOL


Edited by arcorob - 2/5/14 at 1:48pm
post #3769 of 8013
Nice comments arcorob. Your set up looks spectacular. Which Velleman amp is this? I couldn't find it on their site.
post #3770 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by teb1013 View Post

Nice comments arcorob. Your set up looks spectacular. Which Velleman amp is this? I couldn't find it on their site.


Teb...Its the Velleman K4040. They don't offer it anymore...believe it or not, it was an intense KIT. It can still be found for sale in a few places....It was originally EL34 buy I replaced with GE 6L6GC's from 1961.

https://www.tubedepot.com/products/velleman-k4040-stereo-vacuum-tube-amplifier-kit

 

The assembly guide

https://d1sjrnpi226dnf.cloudfront.net/spree/attached_files/Manual_K4040.pdf?1382030221

 

Inside my Velleman - The LEDS behind the front panel let you BIAS each of the 8 power tubes - flip a dip switch, set the LED for green, move on to the next. VERY easy

post #3771 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post
 


Really hard to say. Let me explain...

 

My rig has been geared toward final. The phono stage and preamp are solid state and they exit via the Velleman tube amp. The Velleman is sweet and very much taliorable by the swapping of 12AX7 input tubes (Mullard, RCA, GE, Sylvania) all unique.

 

Previously, my digital input was via CD or from my Surface Tablet (3.5mm jack out to RCA's) into the preamp. The Surface has an onboard DAC but the sound was "ok".

 

Now with the AUNE, I use the USB out on the Surface to the AUNE and then RCA out to the pre-amp. Amazing difference. Soundstage, clarity, nice forward mids...

 

Then playing with the tubes (really the stock tube is better than one expects) you can hear the differences the types offer. So here was my review of the first ones. NOTE - this applies to my system. Of course every systems will be a bit different (links in the chain) but definitively , yes a clean tube sound...

 

[B][U]The Stock tube - 6922EH - New tube by Electro Harmonix - 3 1/2 stars (out of 5) [/U][/B]For a stock, new design tube, I have to say it has its merits. it has strong gain, very wide soundstage, brings the mid's into focus where they should be. The vocalist is present where they should be and clearly distinct in a 3D sort of way. The bottom is nice, not boomy but the top end, while detailed can be a bit fatiguing. I can say it is like an Audio Technica microline cart that hasn't broken in yet. Vaguely bordering on sibilant in that high upper range - not quite getting there but you almost expect it. For a stock new issue tube, not bad.

 

 

Interesting ..little mixed reaction in this one from the other reviews ,makes me thing that combining Aune T1 with another preamp  can make some tubes shine more then others ,as for Amperex I would agree that it can give to much bass,for me it's little to juicy/boomy 

Thank you for the review

 

Can someone recommend tube amp that will compliment Aune T1 ?,I'm looking at DarkVoice 336SE and since it uses other tubes how would this affect the Aune ? I want some more options to choose from  

Thanks  


Edited by spacequeen7 - 1/1/14 at 5:26pm
post #3772 of 8013

You will always have that balancing act of tubes on tubes..but here is a good rules to follow,

 

If you are set with one piece of gear..your tubes give you the exact balance, then it is easier to add something else that is tube driven and balance out.

 

So for example, if you have a system (tube) and it is perfect to you, top to bottom, but you add an AUNE and it is a bit bright, then the answer is to get a less bright tube, In my case, the 6922EH leaned toward bright, the orange globe Amperex, bass heavy (boomy)...The GE ..Perfect (or damn close..lol...still experimenting)

 

But if you buy the AUNE and a tube headphone amp, balance is a harder task. Not impossible, just more difficult. 

 

so a two tube head amps I like (way out of the price range

http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/icon-audio-hp8-mk2-tube-headphone-amplifier

 

http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/consonance-m10s-tube-integratedheadphone-amplifier

 

This one is pretty cool too..

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Rivals-Single-ended-EL34-12AX7-Vacuum-Tube-Amplifier-with-Headphone-Amp-function-/350923470029?pt=US_Home_Audio_Amplifiers_Preamps&hash=item51b4ab34cd

 

Now here is the deal...you blend your headphone amp with the AUNE..and it sounds a bit thin...is it the AUNE tube or the head amp input tubes ? You will figure it out, but you need a baseline.

 

One option, get the headphone amp first and use a source such as CD that you love. SO when you have the sound you like, add the AUNE and you are either good, or need an AUNE tube change...

 

Does this all make sense?

post #3773 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post

 

[B][U]Vintage Amperex Tube 6GM8 / ECC86 - With Orange Globe and made in Herleen Holland - 1968 - 4 stars (or maybe 3.8 stars ?)[/U][/B] This is one of the holy grail tubes, hard to find with the globe in this setup. More often it has a bugle boy on it (not BUGLE BOY tubes..long story). They can be expensive and I snagged this for $14.99 It is a fine sounding tube, very holographic with nice highs and mids. It takes the edginess off that was present in the 6922EH but without being rolled off. Bass is very deep...perhaps too deep. I could feel it which was nice but found myself wondering if it was a bit boomy. Certainly would not be describe as tight crisp bass. Sort of made me think my bottom end was replaced with some Cerwin Vega D9's. From what I have heard so far..I would almost (and did) give it 4 stars but more listening with other types move it down to 3. So much for one of the better recommended. This is where system variations truly dictate what is good for whom

For me it`s weird that you find Amperex 6GM8/ECC86 bass department "boomy" ...with my setup and tube (different code date) it`s certainly not boomy, if anything, it`s tinybit "recessed" but I think it comes from bass being more "present" with other tubes I have and it`s certainly tight imho. Dunno, I think setup just makes difference or different production date. Actually this case shows really well that there are many nuances and you can never count on somebody`s impressions 100%.

 

Edit: Maybe someone wants to try this amp with Aune T1: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/310557793652?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1438.l2649 

Maybe going to buy it in future but not sure. Good thing is - it uses same tubes that Aune T1 does.


Edited by CoiL - 1/1/14 at 6:05pm
post #3774 of 8013
Quote:
Does this all make sense? 

most of it ..except the price (no way I will spend G-note on tube amp-$300 max ) ,the Bravo V3 uses same type of tube wouldn't this be a better (cheaper ) option ?   


Edited by spacequeen7 - 1/1/14 at 6:13pm
post #3775 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by CoiL View Post
 

..., I think setup just makes difference or different production date. Actually this case shows really well that there are many nuances and you can never count on somebody`s impressions 100%.

and that is 100% correct. If you listen to the world of 12AX7's, the RCA and GE triple mica blackplates, etc. and Telefunken are top of the pack. well, I have a very detailed system so the blackplates were a tad bright and their mids recessed. The Tele's were dull. The Mullards were sweet and my #2 choice, by the slimmest margin to the Sylvania 5751 Gold letter black plates, Top to bottom perfect and forward mids...a winner...LOL..But in another system might give someone the screaming mimi's...LOL

 

Hey, your reviews as well as others are STILL helpful. You were not OFF on the Amperex assessment..it is a great tube..but the bottom on mine didn;t match. On another 9 out of 10 other systems, might be the holy grail...so that's why we post reviews...Oh crap...maybe I should not post mine,,,slew the curve...lol

post #3776 of 8013

I've been doing a lot of speaker amp to headphone stuff lately but a few days ago I listened to my T1 as a comparison with my 40 watt per channel tube speaker amp with and without a resistor network L-pad attenuator and the T1 is just such an awesome little DAC/amp. Someone mentioned the T1 not driving modified Fostex T50RPs very well but mine sound fantastic with the T1's gain switches in the mid position. My HE500s sound great too. You can't beat the bang-for-buck of the Aune T1.

post #3777 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post
 

[B][U]The Stock tube - 6922EH - New tube by Electro Harmonix - 3 1/2 stars (out of 5) [/U][/B]For a stock, new design tube, I have to say it has its merits. it has strong gain, very wide soundstage, brings the mid's into focus where they should be. The vocalist is present where they should be and clearly distinct in a 3D sort of way. The bottom is nice, not boomy but the top end, while detailed can be a bit fatiguing. I can say it is like an Audio Technica microline cart that hasn't broken in yet. Vaguely bordering on sibilant in that high upper range - not quite getting there but you almost expect it. For a stock new issue tube, not bad.

 

[U][B]Russian Voskhod 6N23P - 1986 vintage - Made for medical use (red tip) - 1 star[/B] [/U]Unlike some very good SOVTEK, SVETLANA and others that are sturdy and have a decent sound quality, these were as dull and lifeless as they come. The soundstage was narrow and flat (no depth). I really have nothing positive to say except I am glad I only paid $9.00 for a pair. I'll sell them for $7.00 - any takers ? LOL

 

[B][U]Vintage Amperex Tube 6GM8 / ECC86 - With Orange Globe and made in Herleen Holland - 1968 - 4 stars (or maybe 3.8 stars ?)[/U][/B] This is one of the holy grail tubes, hard to find with the globe in this setup. More often it has a bugle boy on it (not BUGLE BOY tubes..long story). They can be expensive and I snagged this for $14.99 It is a fine sounding tube, very holographic with nice highs and mids. It takes the edginess off that was present in the 6922EH but without being rolled off. Bass is very deep...perhaps too deep. I could feel it which was nice but found myself wondering if it was a bit boomy. Certainly would not be describe as tight crisp bass. Sort of made me think my bottom end was replaced with some Cerwin Vega D9's. From what I have heard so far..I would almost (and did) give it 4 stars but more listening with other types move it down to 3. So much for one of the better recommended. This is where system variations truly dictate what is good for whom

 

[B][U]6GM8 ECC86 Tube (GE Label marking) made in HOLLAND - Vintage 1963 - 4.25 Stars [/U][/B] This one made my eyes pop. It is not one that was advertised as remarkable, in fact, I don't see a lot of listing for it (Brent J doesn't) but I guess for me it is a best kept secret. From top to bottom, everything was detailed, in the right place with a wide holographic sound stage. The bass is where the Amperex SHOULD have been but was not, the vocals a pure joy as you could hear the vocalist at the mic. Vey nice, clear separation of instruments, nothing munged together. So far, my best tube. One note, it says MADE IN HOLLAND on it (factory lettering) but the CODES say it was made in Hamburg Germany. WWII was over in 1963, right ? LOL

 

Very nice post. I added this to the info page. If you ever review more tubes remember to update this post also.

post #3778 of 8013
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcorob View Post
 


In one word "Yes". It does deliver a tube sound.

 

First. It is a SS amp and a SS DAC. A tube DAC would be the size of a bus. So all the solid state stuff does its job but exiting the DAC it uses the 6DJ8/6922 tube as a buffer and that is where the "tubey" sound comes from. As Coil pointed out, this is clearly evidenced by tube rolling. I myself in less than a week have tried 4 tubes, each distinctly unique in its presentation.

 

 

 

 

Please help "edumacate" me here. I've been slogging through the entire thread but am only into page 72 so far. I understand about the SS DAC & SS headphone amp If you use the phones does the the signal go DAC > tube buffer > headphone amp? That way we would still get the tube effect (using usb) whether we used phone or line out to a stereo system? That's what I'm hoping. Thanks.

 

Ben

post #3779 of 8013
Ben,
yes. As long as u USB in. Then it is USB to dac to tube to headphone amp.
post #3780 of 8013
Salvatore, thank you. I will have two more soon !
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