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Ampsandsound Kenzie/Mogwai Impressions

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  1. dmhenley
  2. dmhenley
    The 300b is a dedicated headphone amp?
  3. ampsandsound
    300b with 8ohm tap for speakers... 5watts RMS, 1/4" jack with ~1watt into 32ohm.
    DC heathers 10k input, silly quite... We're packing big iron for this one.
    Still in project mode but I hope she'll be ready for show.
  4. dmhenley
    Wow....OK, wanting to hear that too. Now you've gone and messed with my plans :wink:
  5. dmhenley
    Hope to connect with some folks at the show. I'll be in Friday and Saturday, if all goes well.
  6. dmhenley
    Well, I didn't make it to CA for The Show, but, I did order my Mogwai!
    Looking forward to an entirely new 2channel system centered on this amp.
    Thanks Justin.
  7. dmhenley
    And to follow up on that...
    Any insight or recommendations for 6SL7 selection? I think I'll try and grab one for some rolling options after settling in with the stock tubes.
  8. Luckbad
    I really like the Sylvania 6SL7. People tend to really like the Tung-Sol 6SU7 as well. I need to sell my non-Sylvania 6SL7.
  9. dmhenley
    Ok, cool. Was looking at these online. Thanks!
  10. dmhenley
    Mogwai is in house. Briefly tested with my Nighthawks and it sounded great right out of the box (though I did swap in my GL KT77). Powering my Lore now with plenty of drive, and tone for days. Full report coming in time.
    Luckbad and mithrandir38 like this.
  11. uncola
    Nice, the Lore is 98db sensitive.  One of the highest sensitivity and most affordable floorstanders I've seen
  12. dmhenley
    Yep - I really dig the Lore.
    And, the Mogwai is exactly what I wanted for my small-ish space. This combo is delivering on all fronts.
  13. dmhenley
    I'm going to have to post an in depth report on the blog - lots to say already, and it's not even been a week.
    Waiting to pick my wife up at the airport, so thought I'd drop a holiday post...no I'm not typing in the car.
    Early Impressions:
    The Mogwai is, for me, a true bargain. I get a well built, beautiful sounding single-ended circuit in a vintage styled, desktop sized chassis. I like the vintage look. I have a wide range of affordable tubes available to roll, allowing me to tailor my systems sound, ensuring a long and musical run with the amp. It supports headphones and speakers, and has enough grunt to energize my small listening space when powering loudspeakers. I don't hear this circuit as classically 'warm' or 'tubey' - but transparent enough to reveal all tube changes. This is important - I think you could get a wide range of sonic character. We are limited to one input, but that works for me currently.
    I was confident (and thankfully not wrong!) that the Mogwai would be an excellent match for my system and listening habits.
    My humble two channel system:
    I've run the GL KT77 for a day or two - they're already broken in from use with my Primaluna integrated.
    Sound beautiful - great midrange and bass, and nice high end. Used the stock 6SL7. Great match for my system and tastes. 
    I ran the GL KT66 for a day with the stock 6SL7, but they're new so I think they need many hours to settle in. Dynamic, with a larger stage, more linear midrange. Bass is lacking...I think with time that may improve. Awesome sounding tubes, but not a perfect match for me now. Another great example of how the amp is letting the tubes qualities shine through.
    This complement pictured above has been the most engaging. Trying to avoid hyperbole...but, I'm just getting exactly what I've been looking for now.
    6CA7-Z Treasures with a Sylvania 6SL7GT VT-229 handling input duty. Extended at both extremes, lovely midrange texture and solid well balanced low end. Plus, a drive and tonal weight that just grabs a hold and doesn't let go. Driving my Tekton Lore, this is the best my system has sounded. These tubes best the GL KT77 in every way - though the GL are great - the treasures are better. They aren't cheap, but had these run in my Primaluna amp a couple years back. Again, for my taste these tubes are it.
    I know this is Head-Fi...so I'm off the reservation. I listen more to my two channel system when possible.
    That said, the Nighthawks are equally as impressive with the Mogwai. Of course, being 25ohm 'phones, I'm only going just over 9 o'clock on the dial - so not taking advantage of the power here. But, all the Mogwai's qualities are apparent here too, though of course with the NH there's headroom. An understatement, I think.
    More later
    Wildcatsare1, Douger333 and Luckbad like this.
  14. uncola
    Heh I spot some anticables.  Could you describe the sound difference from small-power tube amps like mogwai and bigger tube amps like your primaluna?  I'm a solid state guy so the entire concept of powering speakers on like a 3 watt amp is so weird to me.  
  15. dmhenley
    My Primaluna was the Prologue Premium integrated amp - rated at about 35-40 watts depending on tube selection. It's a great amp! Just wasn't a good match for me.
    So, roughly 12 times the power of the Mogwai. The PL is a push-pull amp, and the Mogwai is a single-ended class A amp. 
    Sonically, the PL was far more authoritative and powerful - no surprise. In fact, it was too much for my small listening space, when paired with the Lore. This was the primary reason I sold it (one year ago), and went to lower powered amps. I simply don't need that kind of power.
    That said, the Mogwai's output is plenty. I can easily get to uncomfortable volume levels with it. That's not the focus though...
    With sensitive speakers like the Lore, the SE amps generally deliver better detail and coherency at lower volumes. Also, the simple signal paths of these circuits limits the deterioration of the signal (fewer components) - so to my ears they sound better in comparison. Again, among all the other great qualities, the Mogwai delivers plenty of bass weight and punch - very addictive sound in my space and system. I think it's about pairing the right components. There's always a trade-off when choosing these kinds of amps, in my experience.
    In the push-pull amps, generally the low end is tighter, drier and more powerful when compared to a single-ended amp. You will generally have more control over the drivers, etc.
    But, it's a trade-off, because you may not get the nuance, air and lower distortion you might get with a single-ended amp.
    Of course, these are generalizations regarding push-pull vs single-ended amps - and I'm not an expert - so take this for what it's worth.
    I decided at one point that practicing the 'less is more' approach with my system was the way for me. 
    And, yes - I dig the Anticables!
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