Vali 2 tube rolling
Aug 6, 2021 at 9:22 PM Post #5,731 of 6,105

bcowen

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Just buy another Vali - a perfect excuse to get the + model. Then you can just wire the heater pins on the 2 amps in series.
Again you can thank me later…
Yeah...that's it. Two amps, and just use one triode in each tube. Why didn't I think of that? :laughing:
 
Aug 6, 2021 at 10:59 PM Post #5,732 of 6,105

jonathan c

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Yeah...that's it. Two amps, and just use one triode in each tube. Why didn't I think of that? :laughing:
Two amps total…two triodes total…two headphones total?…it’s time for…
13F4BFB2-2471-4829-B6BA-26978599C21F.jpeg
 
Aug 7, 2021 at 2:28 PM Post #5,733 of 6,105

Mr Trev

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Yeah...that's it. Two amps, and just use one triode in each tube. Why didn't I think of that? :laughing:
I thought about doing that ages ago with my Little Bears - treat 'em as monoblocks.

Except I didn't actually think of doing it until after I modded one. And I was way too lazy to mod the other to match
 
Aug 10, 2021 at 6:10 PM Post #5,734 of 6,105

hodgjy

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Other tidbit and observations during my tube rolling journey:

1) The Vali 2+ takes about 2 hours to warm up and sound its best. I can sound like arse at first with not much bass and some sibilance, especially when using the 6CG7 tubes.

2) Using tubes with a 600 mA heater draw make the amp run warmer, as expected, compared to tubes with 300-345 mA draw. Also, tubes with the higher heater current make the amp pop at a lower volume during turn-off compared to the lower draw. I think this probably has to do with capacitor discharge.

3) Tubes without the shield on the 9 pin tend to be noisier and can have audible noise when no music is playing. However, the 6FQ7 tends to be warmer sounding than the shielded 6CG7.

4) The 6CG7 tubes have the best imaging, sound stage, and dimensionality.

5) I'm not sure how important it is to have balanced triodes. I asked Schiit, and they said important, but I haven't detected any channel imbalance on any tube I tried. Some were tested and were within 10%, but others were not and I have no idea how close they were.
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 8:33 AM Post #5,735 of 6,105

Ripper2860

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10% between triodes is typically considered a reasonably well balanced tube. I believe all Schiit tube amp auto-bias to negate the affects of an unbalanced tube, however I do not know at what % variation auto-bias cannot compensate for an imbalance.
 
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Aug 11, 2021 at 9:17 PM Post #5,736 of 6,105

Neweymatt

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Welp, I've gone and ordered myself a Vali2+ this morning, now I've got 4-6 weeks to obsess over what tubes to start rolling with.

I can conclusively say the tube you want is the one I suspected all along: Voskhod rocket 6N1P-EV. My curiosity got the best of me, so I tried all kinds of tubes: 6N1P-EV, 6BZ7, 6CG7, 6FQ7, 6DJ8, ECC88, and 6922. Take all of your other tubes and put them in drawer and save them for other amp projects.

OK, so I should probably go and order a few of these, but I can't imagine the tube rabbit-hole is that shallow.

What else should be on my shortlist?
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 9:49 PM Post #5,737 of 6,105

hodgjy

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Welp, I've gone and ordered myself a Vali2+ this morning, now I've got 4-6 weeks to obsess over what tubes to start rolling with.

OK, so I should probably go and order a few of these, but I can't imagine the tube rabbit-hole is that shallow.

What else should be on my shortlist?
Start with the stock tube to get a baseline feel for the amp. Then the two tubes you should try first, which are also pretty cheap, are the Voskhod rocket 6N1P-EV and a 1960s GE 6CG7 with center shield. If you get adventurous and don't mind running the risk of a slightly noisier tube (it's like rolling the dice), go for a 1970s or 1980s GE 6FQ7 without center shield and "hot wire" series filament heater wire. This is also pretty cheap.

GE tubes get a very unfair bad rep around a lot of tube parts, but that's good for true rollers because it keeps the costs down. GE did have some duds, but every GE tube I've used in my all my amps have been pretty neutral with good air and detail. Back in the day, they were viewed as premium tubes before collectors starting getting interested in exotic Euro tubes. It's a shame GEs are no longer remembered as premium.

You'll find something you like in that bunch. If not, you have to go further up the cost ladder, which may be kinda foolish in such a cheap amp. Let me know how you like any (or don't) any of those tubes and then we can discuss more expensive options. But, as I said, this could be foolish because, even though tube rolling does have an effect on the sound, it's not a drastic, night and day difference between tubes like you may find in other amps. You can never fully escape the Vali 2+ DNA, which is neutral and a bit forward, especially in the treble region where you get snare drums and high hats. Tubes can tame that a little or make it even more aggressive to your liking, but you're never gonna get a warm and gooey OTL sound like a Woo Audio WA3, for example.
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 10:33 PM Post #5,738 of 6,105

jonathan c

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Start with the stock tube to get a baseline feel for the amp. Then the two tubes you should try first, which are also pretty cheap, are the Voskhod rocket 6N1P-EV and a 1960s GE 6CG7 with center shield. If you get adventurous and don't mind running the risk of a slightly noisier tube (it's like rolling the dice), go for a 1970s or 1980s GE 6FQ7 without center shield and "hot wire" series filament heater wire. This is also pretty cheap.

GE tubes get a very unfair bad rep around a lot of tube parts, but that's good for true rollers because it keeps the costs down. GE did have some duds, but every GE tube I've used in my all my amps have been pretty neutral with good air and detail. Back in the day, they were viewed as premium tubes before collectors starting getting interested in exotic Euro tubes. It's a shame GEs are no longer remembered as premium.

You'll find something you like in that bunch. If not, you have to go further up the cost ladder, which may be kinda foolish in such a cheap amp. Let me know how you like any (or don't) any of those tubes and then we can discuss more expensive options. But, as I said, this could be foolish because, even though tube rolling does have an effect on the sound, it's not a drastic, night and day difference between tubes like you may find in other amps. You can never fully escape the Vali 2+ DNA, which is neutral and a bit forward, especially in the treble region where you get snare drums and high hats. Tubes can tame that a little or make it even more aggressive to your liking, but you're never gonna get a warm and gooey OTL sound like a Woo Audio WA3, for example.
Hey hey hey, a Woo Audio WA3 with a GEC 6080 (CV5008) and Brimar CV455 (KB/FB, Footscray: 1956) is certainly not “warm & gooey”….keep the treacle in the kitchen 😜
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 10:41 PM Post #5,739 of 6,105

hodgjy

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Hey hey hey, a Woo Audio WA3 with a GEC 6080 (CV5008) and Brimar CV455 (KB/FB, Footscray: 1956) is certainly not “warm & gooey”….keep the treacle in the kitchen 😜
LOL, fair enough! With my stock International Servicemaster (Yugoslavia, but you never really know who actually made them and where) 6922 and a cheapo RCA 6AS7G Coke bottle, it's like a warm bubble bath.
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 11:14 PM Post #5,740 of 6,105

jonathan c

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Welp, I've gone and ordered myself a Vali2+ this morning, now I've got 4-6 weeks to obsess over what tubes to start rolling with.



OK, so I should probably go and order a few of these, but I can't imagine the tube rabbit-hole is that shallow.
Each tube rabbit-hole could be shallow or deep; the problem for us “tubers” is that there are a ‘gazillion’ of such rabbit-holes, all interconnected by tunnels. Once in one, where you surface, if you surface, is anyone’s guess…
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 11:19 PM Post #5,741 of 6,105

jonathan c

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LOL, fair enough! With my stock International Servicemaster (Yugoslavia, but you never really know who actually made them and where) 6922 and a cheapo RCA 6AS7G Coke bottle, it's like a warm bubble bath.
I have noticed the “warm & gooey” sound when RCA 6AS7Gs or RCA 5U4Gs (rectifiers) are involved (in Woo WA3 and Woo WA6).
 
Aug 12, 2021 at 7:01 AM Post #5,742 of 6,105

hodgjy

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Each tube rabbit-hole could be shallow or deep; the problem for us “tubers” is that there are a ‘gazillion’ of such rabbit-holes, all interconnected by tunnels. Once in one, where you surface, if you surface, is anyone’s guess…
You have two choices: the red or blue pill.
 
Aug 12, 2021 at 9:05 AM Post #5,743 of 6,105

jonathan c

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Aug 12, 2021 at 9:55 AM Post #5,744 of 6,105

hodgjy

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In the ‘tube arena’, the choice is GE or everything else 😜
Well, I've already stated publicly my treasonous affinity for GE tubes. For me, the traitors are Sylvania. I've not heard many of theirs like I like. Their 7236 is ok, albeit a little dry, whereas the Tung-Sol 7236 is much richer.
 
Aug 12, 2021 at 11:35 AM Post #5,745 of 6,105

jonathan c

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Well, I've already stated publicly my treasonous affinity for GE tubes. For me, the traitors are Sylvania. I've not heard many of theirs like I like. Their 7236 is ok, albeit a little dry, whereas the Tung-Sol 7236 is much richer.
Actually, I own four of the GE 5998A power tubes. They are very good (rotate their use in Woo WA3). As for Sylvania, I have no experience with their 6080 types but I do like their 7308s and their triple mica, square getter 12AT7…(rotation in Schiit Valhalla II).
 

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