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Bottlehead Amplifier Discussion / Comparison Thread: Crack, SEX & Mainline - Page 49

post #721 of 1613
Quote:
Originally Posted by olegausany View Post

You need balanced amp for that , SEX is single ended. But still i prefer HD800 from the speakers taps over headphones jack while Doc B. says there shouldn't be any difference. But i tried HD800 with SS amp with speakers taps and result was same

 

Balanced/unbalanced is a cabling interface, with the distinction being related to how ground is treated.  The SEX can be wired for either, and with the impedance switch kit a balanced output is easily obtained from the speaker taps.


Edited by audiowize - 5/27/14 at 12:31pm
post #722 of 1613
Thanks for info . This is the way i was using it
post #723 of 1613

Okay now the T1s have arrived, and it's just as I expected, that my NFB10SE has enough power but not enough refinement for their full potential. I'm hoping to add a touch of warmth with an amp, will the SEX be able to do that? I fear that the Crack would be too warm for my taste. 

Also what kind of advantage would I get with C4S upgrade? More refinement in mids? I read Loquah's review but didn't get the gist about the effect of C4S...

I'm currently considering the SEX and Yulong A18. Thanks! 

post #724 of 1613
Quote:
Originally Posted by marshallmole View Post
 

Okay now the T1s have arrived, and it's just as I expected, that my NFB10SE has enough power but not enough refinement for their full potential. I'm hoping to add a touch of warmth with an amp, will the SEX be able to do that? I fear that the Crack would be too warm for my taste. 

Also what kind of advantage would I get with C4S upgrade? More refinement in mids? I read Loquah's review but didn't get the gist about the effect of C4S...

I'm currently considering the SEX and Yulong A18. Thanks! 


Don't discount the Crack it can be stunning with the T1's

post #725 of 1613

Yeah I'm not exactly discounting them, in fact I'm just suspecting that it might be too warm for me... Also I'm hoping to run T1s balanced, which is more plausible with SEX apparently. I have a speaker tap to 4-pin XLR adapter. 

Definitely open to your opinions. Thanks! 

post #726 of 1613
Quote:
Originally Posted by marshallmole View Post
 

Okay now the T1s have arrived, and it's just as I expected, that my NFB10SE has enough power but not enough refinement for their full potential. I'm hoping to add a touch of warmth with an amp, will the SEX be able to do that? I fear that the Crack would be too warm for my taste. 

Also what kind of advantage would I get with C4S upgrade? More refinement in mids? I read Loquah's review but didn't get the gist about the effect of C4S...

I'm currently considering the SEX and Yulong A18. Thanks! 

The stock SEX is great, and it has a variety of official and unofficial upgrades to make it excellent. I've yet to hear much that can compete with my upgraded SEX, regardless of price, but I have no direct experience with the Yulong A18. Or, for that matter, the Mainline.

 

Generally speaking the consensus is that the C4S is the single most significant upgrade for the SEX. The improvements are not subtle, and can be heard in all areas. It's also one of the least expensive, so there's really no reason to skip the C4S.

post #727 of 1613
Don't forget about tubes rolling on Crack
post #728 of 1613
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marshallmole View Post
 

Okay now the T1s have arrived, and it's just as I expected, that my NFB10SE has enough power but not enough refinement for their full potential. I'm hoping to add a touch of warmth with an amp, will the SEX be able to do that? I fear that the Crack would be too warm for my taste. 

Also what kind of advantage would I get with C4S upgrade? More refinement in mids? I read Loquah's review but didn't get the gist about the effect of C4S...

I'm currently considering the SEX and Yulong A18. Thanks! 

 

The C4S is refined and perhaps a tiny bit warm, but not as much as other tube amps I've tried.

 

In terms of the C4S, I can only describe what it does as bringing all the music into sharper focus (including the mids). Imagine looking at an image through your camera that is just a hair off perfect focus (so little that you can't tell until it's made perfect) and then adjusting it so that everything suddenly becomes even sharper and clearer. That's what the C4S does - it just makes everything about the S.E.X. significantly better, but it doesn't alter the signature at all. So yes, refinement in mids, but also in treble and bass. The idea of the C4S (and Speedball for the Crack) is to apply a higher load to the tubes which helps them to operate consistently at stable, peak performance so you're just getting the best possible sound out of the circuit. That's why it doesn't really change the sound signature, but rather just refines everything to be better at what it already did. (Or at least, that's my layman's understanding)

 

As for S.E.X. vs Crack. A modded Crack with a better attenuator / volume pot and a nice set of output caps can sound exceptional, but will still have a more intimate presentation than the S.E.X. I wouldn't worry too much about warmth, because the Crack can easily be tuned with caps and tubes to be thick and creamy or airy and transparent (but still with some lovely tube warmth). I would probably base my decision on 2 things:

  1. Are you willing to modify the Crack after you build it (i.e. change caps, attenuator, etc.)?
  2. What sort of presentation do you like? 3D, but intimate (Crack) or spacious and open (S.E.X.)?

 

If you're not wanting to mod the design, you will definitely find the S.E.X. to be superior (IMO), but with about $150 worth of mods I would say the Crack (+Speedball) easily can hold it's own with the S.E.X.

post #729 of 1613

In terms of presentation, I'm sure I'd prefer a spacious open sound, so I'll perhaps go the SEX route. Thanks everyone! 

post #730 of 1613

I recently bought my crack+speedball from M***drop and would like to have someone build it for me. Is there someone recommended on the forums, and how much do they typically charge for this?

 

Also do I just ship it to them?

 

Thanks all

post #731 of 1613
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarium View Post
 

I recently bought my crack+speedball from M***drop and would like to have someone build it for me. Is there someone recommended on the forums, and how much do they typically charge for this?

 

Also do I just ship it to them?

 

Thanks all

 

Take a look on the Bottlehead site and forums. They have a "recommended" builder mentioned there.

post #732 of 1613
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarium View Post
 

I recently bought my crack+speedball from M***drop and would like to have someone build it for me. Is there someone recommended on the forums, and how much do they typically charge for this?

 

Also do I just ship it to them?

 

Thanks all

I would have recommend Loquah . I bought one built by him , but you are in US so a US based builder would be better for you.

post #733 of 1613

If anyone is UK/EU based on a budget and after a nice pair of 100uf film output caps for their Crack I have just listed two used but perfectly working 100uf 400V DC Solen film capacitors. I found them very similar sounding to the JFX premium films and as such don't require two different makes of capacitors that sound so similar in my growing pile so the Solens are now up for grabs if anyone is interested..

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Solen-100uf-400V-DC-Film-Capacitor-x-2-/121352137226?pt=UK_BOI_Electrical_Components_Supplies_ET&hash=item1c4126aa0a


Edited by JamieMcC - 5/29/14 at 3:34pm
post #734 of 1613

I tried running the crack today with just the 10uf rti teflons as the coupling cap after taking out the 100uf films. It was quiet interesting and while there was a lot wrong with the presentation particularly in the lower registers the upper mids and vocals seemed particularly clean even if they did have a slight leanness about them.  What I was surprised at was that it was still enjoyable enough to listen to in spite of the obvious shortcomings I really thought it would be terrible. 

post #735 of 1613
I'm sorely tempted to get myself a Crack, especially since I read it pairs very well with my HD650's. Has anyone shipped the kit to the UK? Does it travel well? I haven't used a soldering iron since school so is there a particular one I should be looking at?
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