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Bravo Audio - funny looking little tube amps

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by ear8dmg, Sep 9, 2009.
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  1. Mshenay
    that's exactly what he told me lol, a fracture in the joint. So yea we r going to re soder it and I can keep my money! 
  2. DefQon
    Yep and use that money for some new tubes. :)
  3. Mshenay
  4. Twinster
    I have the Bravo Ocean version and was wondering if there is a Mod's to reduce the Gain on this little power house?
    30 DB is way too much. I would be happy with half that gain.
  5. DefQon
    Add in a gain switch to low or high? Other than you can sub some resistors but not much can be done as you're limited to it's circuit design. 
  6. Evshrug
    Research "L-Pads"
  7. UmustBKidn
    Hi folks,
    At the risk of sounding like the noob that I am (wait... nevermind), I had a thought while listening to my B.A. v2 ... yes, a dangerous thing ...
    One reason I bought this little amp was to use it at work. In case someone walks off with it, I won't be out a lot of money. So I wonder, why bother modding it at all?
    If one does mod, what do these mods cost (approx in USD)? Quoting DefQon from Feb of this year:
    >> Tube rolling
    >> IRL510 PBF or N mosfets
    >> Crosstalk mod
    >> Change caps to bigger values and using better brands Nichi's or Elna's will do replacing those NCC's.
    >> Change LM317 to 317A military spec fets
    SOJEK88 posted a pic of his modded amp in Feb of this yr. I didn't see a parts list. Gawd, if I was gonna mod my amp, that's what I'd do, ROFL. Amazing.
    Anyhow, I'm just looking at a cost benefit comparison. I like the amp just the way it is. I also like not having spent a ton of money on it. But I can surely see the benefit of messing with it.
    Thank you kindly for your thoughts.
  8. Judge Buff

    Everyone that responds to you will probably tell you something different, but this is what I consider the best low cost mods that are easy and have very positive sonic effects:

    1. Replace the caps with the highest audio grade caps you can buy/fit for the radial electrolytics and Wima or equivalent for the film caps. Know your size constraints; especially diameter. Height considerations can be ameliorated by using extra/longer posts. Increase the capacitance of the PS cap to ~10K and output caps to at least 1K. Put bypass caps on the cath resistors. If you don't notice a more pure sound from your amp, don't do anything else. Some folks can't and to keep modding is a waste of time and money for them. If you spend more than $40 on caps, you haven't gotten any deals or you made multiple orders.

    2. Rolling tubes. You can obviously do this without swapping caps, but an incredible tube can only do so much alone. Further, if you don't know tube characteristics, brands, equivalents, fakes, etc, you can be greatly disappointed. Since your amp only has resistors to bias the tube and not trim pots (right?), its even more of an imperative to use well-balanced valves, since you can't adjust an individual channel.

    3. Crosstalk mod. Are you actually bothered, peeved or pissed about crosstalk? If so, you might want to risk doing it. But do #1 first and see if you need to make this mod. I never did. I don't know why, but I can't perceive it or it isn't an issue for me. YMMV

    4. Changing mosfets. Meh for me.

    Hope this helps... Take a look at my FrankenAmp, G2, on my profile, also.
  9. jaywillin
    when i ordered my v2, i also got a eh 12au7 to replace the stock tube,
    does anyone have any particular favorite tube , or any recommendations
    tube wise without spending an arm and a leg ??
  10. Evshrug
    If you CAN mod (and this is supposedly an easy job if you can solder), upgrading the capacitors as Judge Buff says would improve everything else down the line. I bought my amp with already upgraded caps and resistors, not huge ones but still good ones, so I don't know the before and after, but it sure does sound fantastic and beats my FiiO for enjoyment easily.

    The tube that came with my amp was also smashed in the mail, but I've had more than a fair amount of success with the NOS tubes I've used since. However, I'm tiring of the Bugle Boy I have in the amp right now... I don't know if it's just this one, but it's really microphonic. If I bump/tap the table or the tube picks up vibration from somewhere, it makes an annoying ringing noise through my headphones like a quieter version of microphone feedback. The military-spec tube I used before didn't have this issue that I noticed, and I bet the Vokshods I still have yet to try won't have it either.
  11. Judge Buff
    Microphonic tubes happen. I have a couple of great tubes that are horrendously microphonic. Tube dampeners may.help. Emphasis on the may. They helped one of mine enough that it's usable, but the other is still too microphonic for me... Don't hesitate, Ev, about throwing a Voskhod in the amp. My crystal ball says you have no chance of finding a microphonic 6n23p from Voskhod. They are great musical tubes, but will be crisper than the BBs with tighter bass and more definition in all freq ranges (My crystal ball is pretty good with 6n23p(s) and Reflektor -ev(s)).
  12. Judge Buff
    RCA black plates and clear tops. Both are awesome and can be gotten inexpensively.
  13. jaywillin
    RCA black plates and clear tops. Both are awesome and can be gotten inexpensively.[/quote]

    back when I had a tube integrated amp , I had used some rca's as my input tubes, and had kinda thought about those,
    another question
    picking up interference from a cell phone , could the amp pick it up if the phone is on the opposite end of the desk , say 36" away ?
  14. DefQon
    Non-Russian reissue Tung Sol 12AU7 preferably horseshoe getter grey plates, they are good quite rare, pop up now and then for less than $40.
    With mods, the biggest impact mod for these amps would be putting them into a different enclosure which reduces crosstalk, emi and rfi interference with nearby electrical components which can give you a quieter background. Followed by tube rolling, then mosfet and caps. 
    If you are feeling a bit more hardcore, a regulated ps can improve sound greatly as well.
  15. Judge Buff
    Mine can't stand our 2.4 GHz cordless phones!
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