Woo Audio WA5/WA5 LE owners
Jul 5, 2017 at 6:50 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 364

Bikeracer661

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So I have been a very, and I mean VERY long time lurker. I am finally throwing myself into the fray, and making an effort to contribute. Before doing so - my thorough thanks to all of you. This is a vibrant community of head-fiers, and I have learned lots over the years by reading your numerous threads.

I am starting this thread as I cannot find any recent threads for the Woo Wa5 amps. I have recently ordered a Wa5-LE and I am anxiously awaiting it's arrival. I would love to hear from other owners about their experience with what by almost all accounts is an amazing piece of equipment. I am most curious to hear your tales of tube rolling this combo. There were similar threads on this subject from many years ago, nut they haven't been updated in 5 or more years. If this thread is redundant, I encourage the mods to merge it as they deem fit.

I ordered the Wa5-LE to power my Audeze LCD-4s. I am hoping it bring them to "life." I also recently acquired a Sony WMA1 which I will be using as my primary source. I cheated and ordered the Wa5-LE with the upgraded internal components and the Takatasuki 300bs. Is anyone using this combo? Thoughts?

Thanks again for allowing me to lurk for years - now I'll try to contribute.
 
Jul 5, 2017 at 7:54 PM Post #2 of 364

pippen99

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I own a two year old WA5. I use the SERP 300Bs, Sophia 274B rectifiers and the Sylvania 6SN7GTs. For spares I keep a pair of Brimar 5Z4GY and Ken-Rad 6SN7GTs on hand. Probably my most interesting tube is the WU4G solid-state rectifiers I bought from Ted Weber. These completely destroy any noise floor in the amp but also turns it somewhat sterile for me. For about $50 it was an interesting experiment and cheap backup. As for now I have no backup for the 300Bs.

Right now the WA5 is sitting cold and dark as I sold off my Norne cables including the 1/4 adapter I used on my LCD-X. Until my Double Helix Prion4 gets built and shipped I am using a friends WyWires Red balanced with no adapter. To be honest I listen to my Cavalli Lau about 70% of the time simply for convenience. The Lau is as good as it gets 5 minutes after its turned on, but the WA5 I let warm up for 10 minutes and still think it doesn't reach peak SQ for another 15-25 minutes. Don't get me wrong, I love my WA5 and won't get rid of it(everyone has his or her price but it would be high). Congratulations on the purchase. The WA5 is a magnificent piece of kit. Don't get caught up in the equipment and forget to enjoy the music.:gs1000smile:
 
Feb 6, 2018 at 9:27 PM Post #4 of 364

hattrick15

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So I have been a very, and I mean VERY long time lurker. I am finally throwing myself into the fray, and making an effort to contribute. Before doing so - my thorough thanks to all of you. This is a vibrant community of head-fiers, and I have learned lots over the years by reading your numerous threads.

I am starting this thread as I cannot find any recent threads for the Woo Wa5 amps. I have recently ordered a Wa5-LE and I am anxiously awaiting it's arrival. I would love to hear from other owners about their experience with what by almost all accounts is an amazing piece of equipment. I am most curious to hear your tales of tube rolling this combo. There were similar threads on this subject from many years ago, nut they haven't been updated in 5 or more years. If this thread is redundant, I encourage the mods to merge it as they deem fit.

I ordered the Wa5-LE to power my Audeze LCD-4s. I am hoping it bring them to "life." I also recently acquired a Sony WMA1 which I will be using as my primary source. I cheated and ordered the Wa5-LE with the upgraded internal components and the Takatasuki 300bs. Is anyone using this combo? Thoughts?

Thanks again for allowing me to lurk for years - now I'll try to contribute.

I have a LCD-4 and have been looking at the WA-5 LE. Can you tell me how you've liked this combo? What tubes have you found are the best?
 
Feb 6, 2018 at 10:45 PM Post #5 of 364

pippen99

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I really love this combo. I am not a tube roller, I have the upgrade tube set that was available when mine was manufactured. Sophia Royal Princess 300B, Sophia 274B rectifier, and Sylvania 6SN7GT drive tubes. I am satisfied with this combination. I have purchased a few backups including some Ted Weber WU4GB solid state rectifiers but I end up using the aforementioned combo. Mine is warming up right now. The only drawback for me is that a warmup of up to 25 minutes is necessary for optimal performance. I usually start listening after 10 minutes but another 15 minutes gets it sounding optimal. Love my Woo, wish I could afford a WA33.
 
Sep 10, 2018 at 7:43 PM Post #6 of 364

Autostart

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I find it hard to believe that there are so few Woo WA5 owners. I would love to hear more about peoples impressions of these fantastic 300b tube amp. I am very happy to join the Woo family for the 3rd time. WA2, WA22 and now the WA5.

20180909_194325.jpg
 
Sep 10, 2018 at 7:56 PM Post #7 of 364

pippen99

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Glad to see you found one. I shipped mine off to a new home 10 days ago. Enjoy.
 
Sep 26, 2018 at 9:04 PM Post #9 of 364

Chozart

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You gave me the inspiration there for the tubes. Dubstep Girl. Received the 596's today (in original boxes), and the Tung Sols a couple of days ago. Bought the WE 300B's several months ago here. I'll get to pictures... but right now can't tear myself from my seat listening to music (headphone currently on my head is the LFF Code X).

Thank you for your thorough reviews (most notably your 2013 rectifier review!) It helped a lot.
 
Feb 25, 2019 at 7:25 AM Post #11 of 364

Wildcatsare1

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Im also a new member of the WA5 “Club,” I’d love to hear/read more about @Dubstep Girl and the tubes used.
 
Oct 11, 2020 at 4:25 PM Post #12 of 364

Dubstep Girl

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Still enjoying this setup along with my
HE-6.

The WA5 is running WE300B, TS VT-99, and 596s. The sound is as transparent and natural as I can get it without spending a lot more. Tube-wise, I might get Sylvania 6SN7W + WE274B or find a GEC B65 or Sweden standard 33S30B if I can find for a good price.

The GSX Mk2 sometimes preamps for the WA5, as well as for the First watt J2. It improves the wa5 sound by tightening the bass and adding dynamic energy.

the speakers are Omega Speakers RS8 compact monitors with their “Speed 10” subwoofer. 98db efficiency single drivers, they are perfect for the wa5 and its 8W of 300B. The sound is smooth, palpable, organic, and transparent, it sounds like music and the speakers can disappear, very detailed but also effortless and lifelike in its presentation. the WE300B were key to providing this openness, holographic, and realism to the sound, without it, it wasn’t as good (used eml 300b prior to we300b). I don’t consider a 300B amp complete or reference level unless it has WE300B, they are a must, otherwise might as well go 2A3 push pull or something else. Love the SET magic of this setup, the purity is unmatched.

There is no coloration in the tonality or expression of the sound, it is absolutely lifelike, the equipment erases itself and the recording comes to life. Absolutely Zero grain. Very immersive. This is the WE300B doing this as the amp / my system didn’t get to this level until I added it to the Woo. With inferior 300B like the EML mesh pair, the sound was great still, clean, detailed, open, extended, but I could still hear the recording, the colorations, the decay wasn’t as liquid and organic, it was just controlled and good, but not real, i could tell it was an amp, a recording, a pair of speakers, a system emulating reality and staying in the realm of good hifi, but not fully breaking thru to the truth, the sound of nothing, but the sound itself, you hear it, and simply experience music, as it is.

Also Volume-wise, its perfect, gets very loud if I want to, perfect for normal size house or apartment living rooms. Bass is solid too, not the deepest, but good enough for most music except test recordings with really low extension. the bass is tight, fast, details, and as natural as I have heard, very clean lifelike decay.

As for the HE-6 combo, I run the gsx into wa5 for the best sound, as the extra gain and dynamics really help finish driving the power hungry he-6 and clean up the bass and transients. Its world-class sound, really leaves nothing to be desired of the setup. I don’t think I can better sound unless I go for something TOTL like susvara.

Overall, WA5 is a winner. It serves as my main amp for a speaker setup while still being able to be there for headphones. the 300b magic is real, and is worth going for, if you can get the right tubes and a setup it works well for (headphones, high efficiency single driver speakers, small/med size rooms).

The WA5 is Woo’s best amp along with the WA33. The newer WA33 will sound better when maxed out internally and with stock tubes due to its 2a3 push pull design, its “more neutral” and dynamic and seemingly more detailed. when maxed with nos 2a3, it’ll be as good as max wa5, perhaps only missing a bit of that purity and openness in exchange for dynamics and detail as well as 2W of more power. the wa5 is simply above average with normal tubes, quite colored at times being warm and slow despite its detail and openness, its so tube dependent. with maxed out tubes and we300b, it goes to another level, and becomes a world class SET amp, only beaten by very nice 300B amps costing tens of thousands of dollars. The WE300B is expensive, and makes the WA5 cost as much as an upgraded WA33, but that 300B magic is well worth the investment, its the ultimate audio tube.

7648C602-94FB-425F-8839-062A1B7126DF.jpeg
 
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Oct 12, 2020 at 12:51 PM Post #14 of 364

Dubstep Girl

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Is that a NOS WE300B or the new production? I'm using Shuguang WE300B Plus tubes in my WA5 with good results. It is a WE300B clone.

WE300B from the late 90s / 2000s I believe. Still sweet.

only other 300b I’ve heard are EML and whichever ones woo audio included with the amp, they are okay but not nearly as clean or resolving.
 
Oct 14, 2020 at 11:19 AM Post #15 of 364

Spareribs

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IMO it’s one of the best amps. If the speaker output version is still available I recommend it. Though it’s only 10 watts, so you would have to run efficient speakers like from Zu audio, Tekton, Klipsch, etc....However, it’s an incredible tone amp and sonics is so amazing.
 

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