Woo Audio WA6 + WA6SE: Tubes, Comments, Pictures, and Advice
Nov 2, 2018 at 6:00 PM Post #3,016 of 3,840

Rizlaw

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Nov 3, 2018 at 11:20 PM Post #3,017 of 3,840

NiceStrongArm

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New to Hi-end, head-phones, and tube amps, so please be kind ...

I have a Woo WA6-SE on order. Rather than inching up, I want to start in a decent place. As this is my first tube amp ever, I am new to everything tubes, including tube rolling. Just for the heck of it, I ordered matched pairs of 13DR7, 13FD7, 13EM7 to see what the fuss is about tube rolling. With the 13EM7, the canadian ebayer asks $27 for a matched pair, while Woo wants $150 for a matched pair. Can anybody comment on the rather large discrepancy? How much difference should I expect with those different tubes? Like the Grado series (see below), or rather like different headphone brands (grado vs Focal vs B&W)?

For headphones, I liked the Grados and noticed steady improvements form 60 80 125 225 325 and 500e. I am also curious about the GS1000 and am waiting for my local shop to get a pair in a week or two. Any indications of what to expect? Anything else to try down the line? The GS1000 with a $1K price tag is about as far as I am willing to go.

Other headphones I tried include McIntosh (similar to the Gardo 325/500 range, but MUCH more expensive), B&W (dull), Focal exxxx (not the utopias: dull). I tried them on either a McIntosh headphone amp and a Woo WA6 (non-SE). I also tried an Audeze Deckard amp, but it sounded too analytical with the Grados and I don't need a DAC.

I listen from baroque through indie, garage, punk, and electronica. No classical classics, classic rock/jazz. Both from vinyl and from digital sources.

Thanks for any words of wisdom!
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 12:00 AM Post #3,018 of 3,840

MrBasseyPants

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New to Hi-end, head-phones, and tube amps, so please be kind ...

I have a Woo WA6-SE on order. Rather than inching up, I want to start in a decent place. As this is my first tube amp ever, I am new to everything tubes, including tube rolling. Just for the heck of it, I ordered matched pairs of 13DR7, 13FD7, 13EM7 to see what the fuss is about tube rolling. With the 13EM7, the canadian ebayer asks $27 for a matched pair, while Woo wants $150 for a matched pair. Can anybody comment on the rather large discrepancy? How much difference should I expect with those different tubes? Like the Grado series (see below), or rather like different headphone brands (grado vs Focal vs B&W)?

For headphones, I liked the Grados and noticed steady improvements form 60 80 125 225 325 and 500e. I am also curious about the GS1000 and am waiting for my local shop to get a pair in a week or two. Any indications of what to expect? Anything else to try down the line? The GS1000 with a $1K price tag is about as far as I am willing to go.

Other headphones I tried include McIntosh (similar to the Gardo 325/500 range, but MUCH more expensive), B&W (dull), Focal exxxx (not the utopias: dull). I tried them on either a McIntosh headphone amp and a Woo WA6 (non-SE). I also tried an Audeze Deckard amp, but it sounded too analytical with the Grados and I don't need a DAC.

I listen from baroque through indie, garage, punk, and electronica. No classical classics, classic rock/jazz. Both from vinyl and from digital sources.

Thanks for any words of wisdom!


The 13EM7s from Woo come with adapters which I believe are $40 a piece.

I too have s new WA6SE. I swapped the rectifier for a Sophia Princess. I didn’t notice much of a change but it glows much prettier...which is very cool but not worth the money to me. I’ll keep it though.

I also grabbed some driver tubes from eBay as well. I’ve tried GE and Toshiba Japan NOS and both sounded better than the stock tubes, with the Toshibas sounding better to me. I also have some NOS Sylvania 13DR7s to try, but for now I like what I have.

So far, I have liked my Senn HD6XX and Beyer DT880 600ohm a lot with this set up.

jc
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 2:10 AM Post #3,019 of 3,840

NiceStrongArm

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The 13EM7s from Woo come with adapters which I believe are $40 a piece.

I too have s new WA6SE. I swapped the rectifier for a Sophia Princess. I didn’t notice much of a change but it glows much prettier...which is very cool but not worth the money to me. I’ll keep it though.

I also grabbed some driver tubes from eBay as well. I’ve tried GE and Toshiba Japan NOS and both sounded better than the stock tubes, with the Toshibas sounding better to me. I also have some NOS Sylvania 13DR7s to try, but for now I like what I have.

So far, I have liked my Senn HD6XX and Beyer DT880 600ohm a lot with this set up.

jc
Forgot about the adaptor! Live and learn. Thanks for pointing that out. Yep $40 a pop.
As far as I read, rectifier contribution to sound is smaller than power tubes, so wanted first to see how much of a difference the power tubes make. Thanks for the info on the Princess.
Re GE and Toshiba, which type? 13DE or 13EM or something else again? I figured that the type designation and the manufacturer interact with one another.
Haven't had a chance to try either Sennheiser nor Beyer. How do they compare to the Grados? That's my rather limited reference as of now. Big bass is not my thing, rather crystal clear upper mids and trebles.
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 11:39 AM Post #3,020 of 3,840

MrBasseyPants

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Forgot about the adaptor! Live and learn. Thanks for pointing that out. Yep $40 a pop.
As far as I read, rectifier contribution to sound is smaller than power tubes, so wanted first to see how much of a difference the power tubes make. Thanks for the info on the Princess.
Re GE and Toshiba, which type? 13DE or 13EM or something else again? I figured that the type designation and the manufacturer interact with one another.
Haven't had a chance to try either Sennheiser nor Beyer. How do they compare to the Grados? That's my rather limited reference as of now. Big bass is not my thing, rather crystal clear upper mids and trebles.

The GEs and Toshibas are 13DE7s.

My username really reflects that I play bass guitar, but I do like a very lopsided V-shape sound signature towards the low end. I've never tried grados before, so I don't really know how they sound.

By replacing the stock tubes, I did hear more high end clarity though....so that was a plus! The bass also seemed to hit harder and not splat quite as much as the stock tubes. The rectifier could have something to do with that as I am sure a cleaner power source is probably preferred when using the amount of power that good clean bass needs.

jc
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 12:39 PM Post #3,021 of 3,840

filip sebastian

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Hello, I am once again in tube amplifier world. My favorite combo has been Musical Fidelity M1 HPA and Peachtree DAC iTX with Beyerdynamic T1.
I bought a Woo Audio Wa6-first gen. amp that I use with a CD player/DAC: Ayon CD 7, a combo way above Musical Fidelity and Peachtree.
The tubes are Mullard GZ32(brown base) and 2x 6DR7 Samsung, and soon I will receive 6CY7 GE and 6FD7 Sylvania fat bottle.
I also wish to buy other rectifier tubes, but I don't know if they will be superior to Mullard GZ32(brown base).
The tubes are:
-Bugle Boy GZ34
-Brimar 5R4GY. Here are both black and brown base. Which of them?

A little help here, is it worth the investment?
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 1:51 PM Post #3,023 of 3,840

quadels

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New to Hi-end, head-phones, and tube amps, so please be kind ...

I have a Woo WA6-SE on order. Rather than inching up, I want to start in a decent place. As this is my first tube amp ever, I am new to everything tubes, including tube rolling. Just for the heck of it, I ordered matched pairs of 13DR7, 13FD7, 13EM7 to see what the fuss is about tube rolling. With the 13EM7, the canadian ebayer asks $27 for a matched pair, while Woo wants $150 for a matched pair. Can anybody comment on the rather large discrepancy? How much difference should I expect with those different tubes? Like the Grado series (see below), or rather like different headphone brands (grado vs Focal vs B&W)?

For headphones, I liked the Grados and noticed steady improvements form 60 80 125 225 325 and 500e. I am also curious about the GS1000 and am waiting for my local shop to get a pair in a week or two. Any indications of what to expect? Anything else to try down the line? The GS1000 with a $1K price tag is about as far as I am willing to go.

Other headphones I tried include McIntosh (similar to the Gardo 325/500 range, but MUCH more expensive), B&W (dull), Focal exxxx (not the utopias: dull). I tried them on either a McIntosh headphone amp and a Woo WA6 (non-SE). I also tried an Audeze Deckard amp, but it sounded too analytical with the Grados and I don't need a DAC.

I listen from baroque through indie, garage, punk, and electronica. No classical classics, classic rock/jazz. Both from vinyl and from digital sources.

Thanks for any words of wisdom!

I've had a WA6SE for about two years now. My tube preferences at this time are the 6FD7 for driver tube and Brimar 5Z4 for rectifier. Based on my experience the 13FD7s you ordered should be really superior to the others. Concerning headphones, I have a Stefan Audioarts-modified Sennheiser HD800S, and a HiFiMan HE1000V2. They are both superb to my ears, with different strengths and weaknesses. I generally use the HiFiMan, which has the better sound staging and 3-D quality, while the Sennheiser has better micro-detail and resolution. I've never liked the Grados.
 
Nov 4, 2018 at 8:26 PM Post #3,024 of 3,840

vlach

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I'm confused about the tube options on Woo's website; the 6DR7 tubes can be purchased as part of a replacement 'stock' tubes set bundled with the stock rectifier for $50...or i can purchase them separately for $120. What am i missing?

$50: WA6 (1st gen): 6DE7/6DR7 Driver/Power x 2, 274B/5U4G Rectifier x 1

$120: 6DR7 Tube (New Old Stock In Pair)

The WA6 i purchased (used) came with RCA 6DR7 tubes - so now i'm not sure if these are stock or upgraded tubes.
 
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Nov 4, 2018 at 9:26 PM Post #3,026 of 3,840

vlach

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Nov 7, 2018 at 3:45 PM Post #3,028 of 3,840

vlach

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Is it me or is the impedance selector at the back of the WA6 nothing more than a high/low gain switch? I mean no matter which low impedance headphones i hook up they always sound louder with the impedance selector set to 100-600 ohm. I thought the purpose of an impedance selector was to maximize energy/signal transfer and expected the 0-99 ohm setting to sound louder with low impedance headphones?
 
Nov 7, 2018 at 3:55 PM Post #3,029 of 3,840

elira

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Is it me or is the impedance selector at the back of the WA6 nothing more than a high/low gain switch? I mean no matter which low impedance headphones i hook up they always sound louder with the impedance selector set to 100-600 ohm. I thought the purpose of an impedance selector was to maximize energy/signal transfer and expected the 0-99 ohm setting to sound louder with low impedance headphones?
The impedance matching is to avoid undesirable effects of the transformer. AFAIK if there’s a big difference in impedance there are changes in the frequency response. The change in gain is a side effect of the augment in the number of windings for the high impedance tap.
 
Nov 18, 2018 at 1:21 AM Post #3,030 of 3,840

NiceStrongArm

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I recently got a Woo WA6 SE. First tube amp ever. When nothing is playing there is some low volume, base line crackling. Crackling intensity is affected by volume control on the WA6. I also put the headphones into the headphone out of an integrated amp (Rotel RA1572) and there is a lower level, non-crackling noise floor. The entire system is on a Furman line conditioner.

Is that crackling normal with tube amps? Is this getting better after the first 150h burn-in? Can anything be done about it? I currently have the stock tubes in it, but have three different power tubes available.
 

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