Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › ALO The Pan Am - The tube rolling thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

ALO The Pan Am - The tube rolling thread

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 

Hello Everybody,

 

I am an happy owner of the Pan Am and I wanted to know which tubes you guys are using with this amp. Personally I really enjoy the Siemens 6AK5 W and I am actually burning the Russian Military, so more about these ones later biggrin.gif. Both of these tubes are available on the ALO website.

 

Could you please add the origin of your tubes and where you got them when you are introducing new tubes in that threads?

post #2 of 30
I'm waiting for mine, got it with the extra Siemens tubes, I'm not too familiar with tubes, can I just get any as along as it fits?
Edited by Kiont - 4/11/13 at 7:42am
post #3 of 30

I've

Siemens 6AK5W (ALO)

OTK (Russian Military)(ALO)

Telefunken CV4010-Local Seller

AEG 5654-ebay

Mullard CV4010-Local Seller

Cifte EF95-Local Seller

Neotron 6AK5W-Local Seller

RTC 5654-Local Seller

 

 


Edited by palchiu - 4/1/13 at 5:16am
post #4 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by palchiu View Post

I've

Siemens 6AK5W (ALO)

OTK (Russian Military)(ALO)

Telefunken CV4010-Local Seller

AEG 5654-ebay

Mullard CV4010-Local Seller

Cifte EF95-Local Seller

Neotron 6AK5W-Local Seller

RTC 5654-Local Seller


Wow! That is a great list! Could you please let me know which one you prefer, and describe the sound of them. If you have some times of course :) I heard that the Telefunken and the Mullard are beautiful tubes!

 

BTW, I am looking at the ALO website and they have a lot of Telefunken tubes available, but they are not CV4010 but 12AX7. Are these tubes compatible with the PanAm?


Edited by vincentc - 3/31/13 at 11:54pm
post #5 of 30

Sorry, my English not well.

 

I prefer Mullard and Cifte, they're cheap you may purchase both.

 

Mullard is nice everywhere, Cifte has sweet mids but less soundstage than Mullard.

 

Telefunken CV4010 leaks bass and thin, same tube as AEG.

 

Neotron not in recommand.
 

RTC is nothing special, but just $5 per tube.

post #6 of 30

Get the Mullards or the Russian tubes. Either are good with the Mullards slightly smoother-sounding and both better than the Siemens IMO.

post #7 of 30
Thread Starter 

I will definitely try the Russian again then! I have the impression that the sound stage is better with the Siemens... I mean I feel that the Siemens deliver a better impression of space when listening to classical music

post #8 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post
 

Get the Mullards or the Russian tubes. Either are good with the Mullards slightly smoother-sounding and both better than the Siemens IMO.

 

Hmm... Interesting...

 

I have tried the below and find the Cidte 5654 to be my favourite... In that case, I might give the Siemens a miss...

 

Cifte - 5654 - Very clean and sweet mids, and not too bassy on the low side...

Valve Electronic - CV4010 - A little too bassy for my taste...

Peking Tube - 6J1 - They are just so so, I have tried to burn them in for about 50 hours, but they just fail to impress me.

Western Electric - 403B - I have tried them, but not seriously listen to them yet...

Russian Military - 6X1Π-EB - Again, tried them, but not seriously listen to them, however, they sound pretty good out of the box, so I might go back to them again later...

post #9 of 30

As I'm about to get into the process of tube rolling on the Pan Am, once I find a set that I like should I be buying multiple pairs of them?  How "rare" are these mini tubes now like the Mullards?  

 

The stock Chinese tubes are still much better than listening to my Mac or iDevice straight.

post #10 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMOS View Post
 

As I'm about to get into the process of tube rolling on the Pan Am, once I find a set that I like should I be buying multiple pairs of them?  How "rare" are these mini tubes now like the Mullards?  

 

The stock Chinese tubes are still much better than listening to my Mac or iDevice straight.

+1 

post #11 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMOS View Post
 

As I'm about to get into the process of tube rolling on the Pan Am, once I find a set that I like should I be buying multiple pairs of them?  How "rare" are these mini tubes now like the Mullards?  

 

The stock Chinese tubes are still much better than listening to my Mac or iDevice straight.

 

Can't speak for anyone else, but when I find tubes that I really like, I tend to buy at least one or more spare sets (depending on cost).

post #12 of 30

you guys ever look into the LD tube rolling thread since we used the same stock tubes? We rolled a ton and found a lot better outside the "official" families that the amp supported. LIKE the 6DT6 is EF95 pin compatible and simply amazing, warm, expansive and dynamic... the 6HM5 (also EF95 compatible... make sure they are tall tubes not the shorties) are similar but not as warm and have a enormous sound stage with very good depth. And are huge improvements over the 6AK5 tubes.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/563884/little-dot-tube-amps-vacuum-tube-rolling-guide/1140#post_9392055

 

use the table for reference.

post #13 of 30

I've only demoed these with HE-500s which I know are not ideal with the amp; however, I hope this will be useful information regardless.

 

Tubes tried so far:

Hytron JHS 6AK5: tl;dr: “tubey,” incredible soundstage depth, rolled off highs

RCA Black Plate 6AK5: tl;dr: Textured, clear, detailed, excellent impact on kick/snare/piano, depth/breadth of soundstage, slightly muddy on very complex classical passages

Tung Sol 6AK5: tl;dr: Accuracy with a noticeable hint of warmth.

GE JAN JLRV 6AK5: tl;dr: very flat, sometimes to the point of being unengaging. best for classical.

Alo’s Russian Tubes: tl;dr: 4/5, a bit veiled but warm, very good for vintage recordings/ vinyl rips.

 

Hytron JHS 6AK5

    I hated these at first but they grew on me. They’re on the warmer end of the tubes I’ve tried without sacrificing too much accuracy. They might be the fastest of the bunch. The busy passages in Chopin’s Sonata No. 3 are really well articulated. The bass impact on John Lee Hooker’s “No Shoes” was particularly engaging. Fun, yes. Crisp, probably not. Jesus christ, as I was writing I put on Agoraphobia by Deerhunter and it sounded shockingly good. Really excellent instrument separation and three dimensional presentation. Soundstage isn’t the widest but that is by no means a huge issue. These might be my favorite with my go-to first test track, Roygbiv by Boards of Canada. Bass is strong and tight but the treble is a bit rolled off, I think.  Orbison’s vocals are also unbelievably syrupy and smooth. The female vocal harmonies over top of Blue Bayou are really warm and soft. These are my favorite tubes with Brian Jonestown Massacre’s “This is Why You Love Me.” The vocals aren’t too raspy, the three guitars are very evident as distinct entities, and the jangle isn’t too abrasive. Bass guitar sounds magnificent with these, better articulated than any of the other tubes.

 

 

 

RCA Black Plate 6AK5

    These are probably my favorite of the bunch. They’re pretty remarkable at pinpointing aspects of recordings I hadn’t noticed before.I’ve literally been listening to Blue Bayou by Roy Oribson for years and this is the first I’ve noticed that there’s a harpsichord. I also never really noticed before how ******* annoying Anton Newcombe’s voice is. They can get a little congested with very complex classical passages but aside from that they can’t do much wrong with me. Impact on piano keys, kicks and snares is the best of the bunch. They presented the boominess of the kick on Slint’s “Breadcrumb Trail” really well. The soundstage is also the widest I’ve come across so far. Vocal presentation very forward and pleasant. Of course, forward vocal presentation on recordings with vocals that are already egotistically advanced will sound a bit uncomfortable. Slightly recessed vocal recordings like “Wish I Was Skinny” by the Boo Radleys come into their own with these tubes.  The highs are detailed but not abrasive at all. It’s a fabulous tube for warm songs, I’m really enjoying John Lee Hooker’s “No Shoes” right now. I’d say these tubes are more “textured.” Old jazz recordings are particularly smooth with astonishing soundstage depth and spacial reproduction. 

 

Tung Sol 6AK5

These tubes are really punchy and warm without sacrificing the high end. They have a wide soundstage with not as much depth as the Hytrons, for example. The articulation on Chopin’s third sonata is the best of the bunch. I’d say these are likely a tie with the RCA’s as my favorite.  The busy passages remain both musical and legible. These edge toward accurate bass, with less weight. I’d call these somewhat airy.

 

 

GE JAN JLRV 6AK5

    I found these to be too bright and abrasive for any phones but the Hifimans. That said, they do pretty marvelously with the micro details to make your FLAC feel “extra lossless.” I wish I had my turntable here, I think these would complement vinyl pretty well. These handle the more congested passages of Chopin’s Third Sonata in B minor much better than the RCA’s; however, they sacrifice some of the low end impact of the RCA’s. Nonetheless, these are probably the better choice for classical; they are especially good with strings.

While the guitar portions of the rock songs I listened to (Agoraphobia- Deerhunter, Glass Museum- Tortoise, Hillbilly Motobike- Stereolab, This Is Why You Love Me- Brian Jonestown Massacre) were especially detailed and fun, vocal presentation falls flat. They do, however, give the music a sense of space. I could hear the room in which Anton’s vocals were recorded. The same goes for jazz, linear presentation at the expense of some of the dynamic characteristics. Dry tubes have their uses. I much prefer these tubes in the Little Dot.

     

Alo’s Russian Tubes

    Pretty, pretty, pretty good is the short answer, I guess. They’re relatively engaging with any electric guitar-type music, good depth of field , but they were noticeably veiled with a lot of things I put in front of them. The treble extension made for some abrasive highs on jangly tracks. These are reasonably good for electronic music, I think. Bass response is a little better than okay. I think where they really shine is on vintage recordings. They lend something to stuff that was recorded on tape probably because they’re warmer. Vinyl rips of the Velvet Underground and Roy Orbison were very pleasant.

post #14 of 30
How long is the livetime of the tubes? A few month or a few years?
post #15 of 30

http://www.head-fi.org/t/138377/how-long-is-the-life-span-of-tube-amp

 

"Depending on how often you turn on and turn off your gear, but tubes should last about 5,000 to 10,000 hours. For most people, they only need to be replaced every 2-3 years at most. But it's good to have at least a spare set around just in case one of them decides to die on you."

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphone Amps (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › ALO The Pan Am - The tube rolling thread