Best first tube amp?
Jul 24, 2022 at 10:21 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 23

smy1

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Hi. What would be a good a good first tube amp for my hd700? And also I am planning on getting a hd800 later down the road. I was thinking about the little dot mk2 or darkvoice 336se otl. Which one should I get or any other recommendation.
 
Jul 24, 2022 at 10:57 AM Post #2 of 23

jonathan c

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What is your spending limit for the tube h/p/a? The range of recommendations is affected by this.
 
Jul 26, 2022 at 9:49 AM Post #8 of 23

jonathan c

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Within that $ range - and since the headphones in which you are interested are of high input impedance - I suggest the Xduoo TA-26 which should be an excellent match:
E55097E9-CA80-43D5-A851-30F57E297F87.jpeg
 
Jul 26, 2022 at 11:32 AM Post #9 of 23

Jefffeith

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My birthday is coming up soon. I'm going to ask for a Schiit Vali 2 so I can put my toe in the water of tube amps.
I own the Vali 2+ and love it. I’ve tube rolled and found every tube I tried sounded great (just a little different - more treble, more bass, small changes basically). This amp really squashed my urge to upgrade. I also have a Topping, Bravo Audio and Dayton amp but enjoy the Schiit most.
 
Jul 26, 2022 at 7:14 PM Post #10 of 23

buke9

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around $300-400
Stretch it out a bit and the Monoprice Cavalli Liquid Platinum is very good with high impedance headphone’s.
 
Jul 29, 2022 at 10:48 AM Post #11 of 23

DeweyCH

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My first tube amp was the Darkvoice. It's decent, the stock tubes are awful but there's a wealth of knowledge around 6SN7 and 6AS7 tubes and their variants over on the DV thread. However, your willingness to tinker/mod may make or break whether the DV is a good choice... there's a few relatively simple (if you are comfortable with some light soldering) mods that take it up several notches in quality. Stock, you're probably going to be looking at it as purely a jumping-off point into better OTL amps.
 
Jul 30, 2022 at 8:41 AM Post #12 of 23

caryking

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My first tube amp was the Darkvoice. It's decent, the stock tubes are awful but there's a wealth of knowledge around 6SN7 and 6AS7 tubes and their variants over on the DV thread. However, your willingness to tinker/mod may make or break whether the DV is a good choice... there's a few relatively simple (if you are comfortable with some light soldering) mods that take it up several notches in quality. Stock, you're probably going to be looking at it as purely a jumping-off point into better OTL amps.
I’m confused about HP tube amps. In a typical home tube amp, you will have something like a : rectifier tube, preamp tube (driver tube), and output tubes. So, in a Single ended stereo amp, you will see 1) rectifier, 1) driver (sometimes two), and 2) output tubes as a standard config.

why do I see people using 6SN7 type tubes only? Aren’t they typically driver tubes? Are no output tubes needed? BTW, I’m not an engineer, so, I don’t understand design; however, I can follow along…

thanks for any help!
 
Jul 30, 2022 at 9:01 AM Post #13 of 23

whirlwind

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I’m confused about HP tube amps. In a typical home tube amp, you will have something like a : rectifier tube, preamp tube (driver tube), and output tubes. So, in a Single ended stereo amp, you will see 1) rectifier, 1) driver (sometimes two), and 2) output tubes as a standard config.

why do I see people using 6SN7 type tubes only? Aren’t they typically driver tubes? Are no output tubes needed? BTW, I’m not an engineer, so, I don’t understand design; however, I can follow along…

thanks for any help!
What tubes you use totally depend on what tubes the amp was built around.

Not all tube amps need rectifiers. This all depends on the topology of the amp, how it was designed.

You are correct, 6SN7 is a very popular driver tube, many amp's use them. It depends on the way the amp was designed as to how many tubes are needed.

I would see if what you have is good enough for you once you get the HD800. It is a fantastic headphone.
If you feel you need more, then as someone else has suggested, try to stretch that budget, save a bit longer and get the HD800 a better partner.
 
Jul 30, 2022 at 4:53 PM Post #15 of 23

Death_Block

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Within that $ range - and since the headphones in which you are interested are of high input impedance - I suggest the Xduoo TA-26 which should be an excellent match:E55097E9-CA80-43D5-A851-30F57E297F87.jpeg
How does this one compare with the TA-20?
 

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