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

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by loquah, Sep 24, 2013.
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  1. Loquah
     
    Interesting results so far with the 6S15Ps. I haven't done any bias adjustments, but so far my order of preference is pretty clearly as follows:
     
    • Electro Harmonix gold pin 6C45P
    • Russian 6S15P
    • Sovtek 6C45P (as supplied with the Mainline kit)
     
    More listening still required, but I'm shocked to hear again how good the Electro Harmonix are in comparison
     
  2. Solarium
    Not exactly butt ugly, but still the paint job could have been better. The wooden blocks are also unpainted. Mainline.jpg
     
  3. JamieMcC
     
    Your 123 preference is the same as mine [​IMG]  Which is kind of interesting because the 6c45p I have with gold pins are not Electro Harmonix branded.
     
  4. mcandmar
    Its pretty pointless to try and evaluate different tubes without correctly biasing them, especially with these tubes as the variance can be huge between them.
     
  5. JamieMcC
     
    Looks ok to me but if you wanted to respray the top I think it would be doable with some careful masking up.
     
    Yours has the RTI Teflon signal caps I think doesn’t it? If so did you know they are more normally found in $25000 Audio Research amps!
    It seems that due to a mix up in ordering a small batch of around 40 capacitors were made to the right UF value but wrong physical size these were disposed by a third of party substantially below their original cost. Quiet a few I think were snapped up by Bottlehead builders. They went pretty quickly if I remember correctly.
     
    http://www.inner-magazines.com/news/209/57/Audio-Research-Anniversary-Edition-Reference-Preamplifier/
     
  6. JamieMcC
    I think the bias difference between the gold pin 6c45P and the Russian 6S15P when I did mine was around 10-14 volts from memory. I have noticed my Mainline's bias point does tend to creep a bit so it gets a check every couple of months now.
     
  7. Solarium

    How do I tell if it has the RTI Teflon signal caps? It would be pretty cool if it does!
     
    I mean looks is one thing, but sound wise it's absolutely superb, especially combined with the Mojo (even with the iDSD too).
     
  8. JamieMcC
     
    The RTI Teflons look like these.
     
    038.jpg
     
  9. Solarium
     
    I'm guessing not, do you mean the big white cylindrical things on the left and right?
     
    Mainline2.jpg
     
  10. JamieMcC

    Yes.
     
    I remembered seeing a Mainline with a white top advertised recently with them in thought it was the same one as in your pic but perhaps not. Must have been a different one
     
  11. Loquah

    I'd have a think about treating the wooden base first to see if it helps. It's much easier than repainting the top and might balance the white top a little.
     
  12. dmhenley
    +1 for considering a refinish on the base.
     
    I've considered doing a make-over on my SEX amp, which has several flaws due to my meager skills and general impatience...but then I start listening again and stop caring about how it looks :wink:
     
  13. Solarium
    I agree, anyone specializes in this? I want a nice gloss wooden finish or better yet piano black :D
     
    Lol, yes every time I start listening to my Mainline, it doesn't matter how it looks anymore. This may be my end-game amp! Maybe at least until I can afford a DNA Stratus.
     
    Must have been a different one. How much different do these RTI Teflon signal cap's make?
     
  14. Loquah
     
    While it can be tricky to get the perfect finish, it's not hard to paint the base. I've done a few paint jobs now and so long as you can get a space that's relatively dust free and be patient in between coats, achieving a good finish is pretty straight forward with spray paint tins from a local store. Just buy a primer, some sand-paper and some gloss black paint and then chat to someone at the paint shop for some tips or watch a YouTube video or two.
     
  15. Loquah
    Look what turned up today... (Russian paper in oil caps). Not sure that they'll be better than the Auricaps I've been using, but interested to hear them...

    IMG_20160622_161438.jpg
     
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