Anyone compared CAT JL7 versus any Audio Research

morricab

Well-Known Member
Apr 25, 2014
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Switzerland
ARC,CJ, BAT, VAC, etc. Everything driving an inefficient box speakers, as I said. :) ... request to play a rock song at an audio show, and these systems embarrass themselves...

Equally sad is that those who don't think the sound of underpowered tube amps driving most box speakers are syrupy . People got acclimated to this syrupy sound and have no clue of what real dynamics are... I am not even gonna talk of listening to live music, as that's not a fair comparison.. I just encourage people to listen to a SET amp driving a horn :)

... sad on many fronts
What about efficient box speakers (say 92db+)? i have heard some very good results with really nice PP tube amps on speakers of this sort. For example, I heard very nice (non-syrupy) sound on a pair of Focal speakers (94db) with the Jadis Defy 7 mkIII (with Siltech loom). Likewise, I was getting superb sound on Reference 3as with a VAC 30/30 MKIII amp PP 300B amp...not as good as that same speaker with SET but really not bad at all. We also were able to rock the house with that amp on a pair of Thiel CS3.7 speakers...something that would not have been expected but it really took control of the bottom end of that speaker (far better than a pair of Octave monos, which had 4x the power on paper). Not all PP tube amps are created equal! CAT would handle all of these speakers with ease...although if your room is not so large and/or you don't listen really loud a 30 watt SET from a few brands would simply sound better.
 

caesar

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2010
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What about efficient box speakers (say 92db+)? i have heard some very good results with really nice PP tube amps on speakers of this sort. For example, I heard very nice (non-syrupy) sound on a pair of Focal speakers (94db) with the Jadis Defy 7 mkIII (with Siltech loom). Likewise, I was getting superb sound on Reference 3as with a VAC 30/30 MKIII amp PP 300B amp...not as good as that same speaker with SET but really not bad at all. We also were able to rock the house with that amp on a pair of Thiel CS3.7 speakers...something that would not have been expected but it really took control of the bottom end of that speaker (far better than a pair of Octave monos, which had 4x the power on paper). Not all PP tube amps are created equal! CAT would handle all of these speakers with ease...although if your room is not so large and/or you don't listen really loud a 30 watt SET from a few brands would simply sound better.

Hi Morricab,
Yeah, you are probably right. Some of the semi-efficient box speakers (92-96 db), with non-obnoxious dips in the impedance, probably are good candidates for tube amps. But, I haven't heard that much of these at all. But I am not a box speaker guy, so I am not aware of these less popular brands.

Hearing box speakers either at dealers or shows has rarely moved me. Save for the top Von Schweikert models with VAC or Vivid Giya Spirit with CAT.

I just find most of the popular box speakers completely boring with tubes (due to the soft, syrupy presentation) or analytically detailed (but more dynamic) with 99% of solid state. Most audiophiles have selected the latter combination.

I don't find the need to compromise between soft and analytical, when there are open designs and horn-type designs. With the vast majority of box speakers I've heard, I wouldn't be in the hobby.
 

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