Friday night listening

cjfrbw

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,599
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Pleasanton, CA
#21
Agree, the 26 type tube is a wonderful tube. In this case the preamplifier driving the 26 gain stage in the amplifier is a custom 01A/26 switchable, configured for 01A during these sessions. This particular amplification/gain chain of 01A ==> 26==> 801A/VT-62 is a very special combination indeed.

The ribbon super-tweeters were not active in these sessions. They are driven by a pair of Mark Levinson ML-2’s 25 Watt Class A monoblocks but have not been used. What you are hearing is the Wisdom Audio Adrenaline Rush’s 75” ribbon driver with help from a Cello Audio Palette MIV and Wisdom’s own “Brain” processor, last version with the remote controlled relay banks.
Thank you for the explanation. Looks dreamy.

I have two 26 based gain preamps and a bunch of 26 tubes in the tube closet. I haven't used them lately, but they're great sounding.
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#22
Was listening to my Accuphase/Tannoy system while replacing the BMS 4590P horn drivers with TAD TD-4001 Beryllium horn drivers on my Yuichi Arai A-290 horns. These is a wonderful system that draws you in and kept distracting me and forcing me to pause and sit up and listen. Although these Tannoy mastering monitors employ only a 15” coaxial driver they love high power solid state amplification. The pairing with the massive Accuphase preamp and power amplifier is truly magical, when feed either from the Micro-Seiki/Klyne analog source or from the custom Zalman/eXD DSD Dac, as is the case in this video:


But I eventually did remove the BMS 4590P drivers:

E4C10B10-5FF5-4935-ACF0-A002A22351DF.jpeg

And installed the TAD TD-4001 massive Beryllium drivers on the Yuichi Arai A-290 horns:

84814241-CDEE-4615-B848-7D30D84CB1D5.jpeg
The results is greater weight, warmth and more organic presentation. As good as the BMS drivers are, and they are very good, they are coaxial and require the passive crossover between the drivers. The TAD on the other hand handle the entire frequency range with the Beryllium diaphragm, albeit they roll off earlier which explains the difference in sound but it allows the massive super-tweeters to articulate with greater definition in the 10KHz to 20KHz range. I kept the crossover for the supper tweeters at 15Khz, actually kept every thing exactly the same so just a straight swap of the BMS for the TAD horn drivers. I don’t think that I will be putting the BMS back in this set-up. Judge for yourself, I’m really enjoying the results:


I have been using the same song by the Doors to use as a baseline and will record it on each of my 21 systems in the future to use for comparisons and reference.
 

kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,306
108
225
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
#23
Carlos269, can you post a drawing/diagram of your room?

What I think I see is two listening areas flanking 180 degrees of one another, one large one on the front wall, and a smaller system (Tannoy ) on the rear wall. Correct?

Yet only the smaller system seem to have a chair. Where is the other chair? Do you stand for the large system?

You have a lot of equipment on your walls between the speakers in both cases, I have recently found sound-staging improved with as little as possible in between the speakers. Has anyone mentioned this to you before?

However I now have a subwoofer right in the middle, thinking of getting a shorter one to minimize possible reflections off the sub's cabinet.

Last night I unboxed my CD's and put them on display shelves, they were located at first sidewall reflection point of the right side loudspeaker. The tall stack of CD storage boxes now gone really freed up the right channel and balanced out the sound-stage.

Uncluttering my room has really helped the system breath in it's smaller dimensions.

Maybe a larger room like yours is more forgiving?

I love your system, just struggling to imagine how you use it.
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#24
Carlos269, can you post a drawing/diagram of your room?

What I think I see is two listening areas flanking 180 degrees of one another, one large one on the front wall, and a smaller system (Tannoy ) on the rear wall. Correct?

Yet only the smaller system seem to have a chair. Where is the other chair? Do you stand for the large system?

You have a lot of equipment on your walls between the speakers in both cases, I have recently found sound-staging improved with as little as possible in between the speakers. Has anyone mentioned this to you before?

However I now have a subwoofer right in the middle, thinking of getting a shorter one to minimize possible reflections off the sub's cabinet.

Last night I unboxed my CD's and put them on display shelves, they were located at first sidewall reflection point of the right side loudspeaker. The tall stack of CD storage boxes now gone really freed up the right channel and balanced out the sound-stage.

Uncluttering my room has really helped the system breath in it's smaller dimensions.

Maybe a larger room like yours is more forgiving?

I love your system, just struggling to imagine how you use it.
My equipment is located in five separate rooms/areas throughout my house; so it is in various environments. My main dedicated listening room, where the Wisdom Audio Adrenaline Rush speakers are located, is 40’ x 34’ x 10’, with a number of sky-light openings in the ceiling and a separate built-in dedicated storage room for one of my music libraries, extra equipment, tubes and so on. The room in the recently posted videos and pictures where, seven of my systems currently coexists is roughly 26’ x 21’ x 11’, with a vaulted ceiling and wet bar area. There are a couple listening chairs, in addition to a couple bar stools in the wet bar, in this room, one is easily movable as I do not want seven chairs in this space, as this area has my large horns set-ups. No standing while listening as I typically listening for several hours at a time.
 
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Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#26
Yes, I see one of them in the photos, where is the chair for the big main system?

Do you turn the one chair around, flip it 180?

Can you post a wide angle shot so that I can get a feel for it?
Here are a couple of pictures of the second listening chair where the video of the Yuichi Arai horns, with TAD drivers, system was shot from and listen to for perspective:

6B0CD36C-0EE6-4D28-84C2-EB9804E8044D.jpeg

2E36A8B5-16BE-431B-ACA2-2942CA2EE65B.jpeg

For a picture of the listening chair in my main dedicated listening room, refer to page one of this thread as there are a couple pictures of the actual chair. That room also has a second movable chairs for the various other systems that are installed there.
 
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kach22i

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
1,306
108
225
Ann Arbor, Michigan
www.kachadoorian.com
#27
Thank you Carlos, the tandem listening positions are clear to me now.

For a second I thought you had an additional 90 degree system active on a long wall (right side), but it was only one of many equipment changes on the front wall that disorientated me.

I trust your audio museum is well insured, I cannot imagine trying to replace it.
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#28
Thank you Carlos, the tandem listening positions are clear to me now.

For a second I thought you had an additional 90 degree system active on a long wall (right side), but it was only one of many equipment changes on the front wall that disorientated me.

I trust your audio museum is well insured, I cannot imagine trying to replace it.
It is the knowledge in my head that gives them extreme value. Without knowing the stories behind these rare and mostly one of the kind pieces, they become just equipment with a Blue Book value.
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#29
This extra time at home has allowed me to finish setting up my latest horn based system. This 4-way active horn system is based on the TAD TD-4002 horn drivers from 800Hz to 15KHz, TAD Beryllium ribbon tweeters/super-tweeters with a first-order crossover at 15KHz, the famous Fane Studio 8M drivers in massive 36” Sadurni Acoustics tractrix mid-bass horns from 100Hz to 800Hz and a pair of the tuneful REL T1 active subwoofers below 100Hz. WOW!!!! I was expecting this system to challenge my Yuishi Arai TAD TD-4001 based horn system but I was not expecting for it to attempt to dethrone it as my reference horn system. Each of the six drivers in the main speakers were meticulously time aligned to compensate for the asymmetrical placements. And the center image was placed directly over the Finite Elemente Pagode Signature rack.

Coming out of the active crossover the amplification chains are as follow:

Tweeters/Supertweeters: a custom 6C45pi preamplifier driving a set of Jack Elliano’s Electra-Print 6BX7 Single Ended Double Triode Low IMD monoblocks

Mid/Highs: an Esoteric Audio Research 802 preamplifier driving a pair of custom 45 SET DHT monoblocks

Mid-Bass: an NRG Control PA-1 preamplifier driving a Gryphon Audio S-100 high biased amplifier

Subwoofers: built-in 300watt Class AB amplifiers

Here are a few pictures of the new system:

741FD669-7022-4EDA-96E5-271A8B2C1E55.jpeg

1708660D-F2E8-4098-A928-1EA8FB277C0E.jpeg

8CA6BCD7-D360-4A01-9A7F-25D06F1089EC.jpeg

CAB14E29-4692-4565-A35A-DCFB7393AFEB.jpeg

12F007B3-D1D4-4601-8827-426841FC7D47.jpeg

58011F7E-6C73-418A-B3F7-45129FD3D4B5.jpeg
 
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Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#31
Never one to settle, after hearing the phenomenal results of my TAD TD-4002/Fane Studio 8M horn system, I spent the afternoon working on my TAD TD-4001 Yuishi Arai A-290 horn based system. I reconfigured it from an active bi-amped system to a tri-amped system. After experimenting and listening to the various permutations, I focused on the ViVA Audio Aurora T monoblocks driving the treble range, the custom 801A/VT-62 amplifier driving the 610Hz to 10KHz TD-4001 drivers and the FM Acoustics 300A amplifier driving the bass horns below 610Hz. I also upgraded the capacitor for the first order crossover to the super-tweeters, but kept the crossover point at 15KHz. The end results might allow this system to retain its place as my reference horn/flea-power system although the verdict is still out. Here is the updated system playing the reference track:

 

cjfrbw

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,599
349
260
Pleasanton, CA
#32
That's quite a toy box. I have gotten into 'amp rolling' recently with my hi efficiency midrange ribbon (300Hz-7Khz), similar to the one in your Adrenaline Rush speakers. I never thought I would be able to use flea powered amps like this in my main system.

45 SE tube for raw transparency, transients, spooky with best upper midrange

2A3/6B4G SE tube types for a bit more viscosity, air and tone with a small sacrifice in detail over 45 tube

300b SE tube for flicker flam midrange and a bit more loosey goosey but gut satisfying lower midrange.

VFET solid state for separation, spotlighting, and splash, with brief but deep, natural but whitish tonality.

50 watt transmitting triode SE Wavac for blazing vitality.

Makes me feel a bit flighty, but I like all of these amps on these ribbons. 6B4G has become a daily driver.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
13,365
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460
London
#33
Hi, which 15 inch tannoy driver is that?
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#35
That's quite a toy box. I have gotten into 'amp rolling' recently with my hi efficiency midrange ribbon (300Hz-7Khz), similar to the one in your Adrenaline Rush speakers. I never thought I would be able to use flea powered amps like this in my main system.

45 SE tube for raw transparency, transients, spooky with best upper midrange

2A3/6B4G SE tube types for a bit more viscosity, air and tone with a small sacrifice in detail over 45 tube

300b SE tube for flicker flam midrange and a bit more loosey goosey but gut satisfying lower midrange.

VFET solid state for separation, spotlighting, and splash, with brief but deep, natural but whitish tonality.

50 watt transmitting triode SE Wavac for blazing vitality.

Makes me feel a bit flighty, but I like all of these amps on these ribbons. 6B4G has become a daily driver.
I agree that there is no silver bullet or “best” tube, path, configuration, topology, recipe or particular component or components to achieve best sound reproduction. Our own Shangri-La can be reached via a number of ways. Having said that, I do feel that the 45 tube might be the best sounding tube top to bottom that I have heard. I like the sound of the 45 tube driving a single high efficiency full range driver. The following exemplifies this and is also one of my most simple and straight forward systems: multi-format universal player into the mythical Spatial Coherence Preamplifier to a pair of Bottlehead Paramour II 45 Monoblock amplifiers, with Iron and Cap upgrades, driving the rare Voice Transmissions “Tenor” monitors, based on a Fostex full range driver:

 
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cjfrbw

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,599
349
260
Pleasanton, CA
#36
45 is the only amplifier I have heard in my system that fully resolves the space boundaries around the chorale groups that feather into the Lord of the Rings soundtrack. This with very ordinary 45 tubes.
It can create a nearly supernatural sonic experience. The upper midrange is so nice it makes you forget the rest of the audio spectrum.

That being said, the restless audiophile might just crave a bit more viscosity in the tone at the expense of that last iota of detail. I suppose that's where the 2A3 comes in.
 
Jul 18, 2014
1,778
1,306
215
#37
This extra time at home has allowed me to finish setting up my latest horn based system. This 4-way active horn system is based on the TAD TD-4002 horn drivers from 800Hz to 15KHz, TAD Beryllium ribbon tweeters/super-tweeters with a first-order crossover at 15KHz, the famous Fane Studio 8M drivers in massive 36” Sadurni Acoustics tractrix mid-bass horns from 100Hz to 800Hz and a pair of the tuneful REL T1 active subwoofers below 100Hz. WOW!!!! I was expecting this system to challenge my Yuishi Arai TAD TD-4001 based horn system but I was not expecting for it to attempt to dethrone it as my reference horn system. Each of the six drivers in the main speakers were meticulously time aligned to compensate for the asymmetrical placements. And the center image was placed directly over the Finite Elemente Pagode Signature rack.

Coming out of the active crossover the amplification chains are as follow:

Tweeters/Supertweeters: a custom 6C45pi preamplifier driving a set of Jack Elliano’s Electra-Print 6BX7 Single Ended Double Triode Low IMD monoblocks

Mid/Highs: an Esoteric Audio Research 802 preamplifier driving a pair of custom 45 SET DHT monoblocks

Mid-Bass: an NRG Control PA-1 preamplifier driving a Gryphon Audio S-100 high biased amplifier

Subwoofers: built-in 300watt Class AB amplifiers

Here are a few pictures of the new system:

View attachment 62952

View attachment 62953

View attachment 62954

View attachment 62955

View attachment 62956

View attachment 62957
Very cool, it looks like you need to be strapped into that seat Carlos. This is some serious fierce near field saturation going on. Very much love all your setup and the videos. You’re inspiring me to use my coming isolation period for a new horn dalliance. I’ve been thinking lately of a setup rigged around 45s or type 50s or 2A3 even. But hearing your 45s bends the ball a bit that way.

Have you any thoughts or heard any on 45s and 50s? PS great demo track.
 
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Jul 18, 2014
1,778
1,306
215
#38
45 is the only amplifier I have heard in my system that fully resolves the space boundaries around the chorale groups that feather into the Lord of the Rings soundtrack. This with very ordinary 45 tubes.
It can create a nearly supernatural sonic experience. The upper midrange is so nice it makes you forget the rest of the audio spectrum.

That being said, the restless audiophile might just crave a bit more viscosity in the tone at the expense of that last iota of detail. I suppose that's where the 2A3 comes in.
That’s the bit where I’m a bit caught out wrt 45s and 2A3. Or do I start to think about a lampi to give me the flexibility to dial in the viscosity and keep the 45s for the amps.

I might just need to think where that choice takes me in regards to music.
 

cjfrbw

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,599
349
260
Pleasanton, CA
#39
I have never heard a 50 or a 10Y. 50 is supposed to be the best compromise between 45 and 300b type sound, with more sumptuous tonality than 45.

I have noticed that 300b when run with a lower B+ at about 5 watts sounds much closer to the 2A3 types, while still providing a bit of lower midrange magic with firmer, more crystalline upper midrange than you would expect from 300b. Of course, there are many variations of these tubes that all have sonic differences.

From memory, I thought that the Telefunken RS 242 was one of the best all arounders for SE type tubes@ about 4 watts. It also has the cachet of being rare and expensive. It's scary, because it is a German WWII tube and some of them have swastikas and Wermacht eagles, but gorgeous sounding tube.
 

Carlos269

Well-Known Member
Mar 21, 2012
56
42
93
#40
looks like you need to be strapped into that seat Carlos. This is some serious near field saturation going on. Very much love all your setup and the videos. You’re inspiring me to use my coming isolation period for a new horn dalliance. I’ve been thinking lately of a setup rigged around 45s or type 50s or 2A3 even. But hearing your 45s bends the ball a bit that way.

Have you any thoughts or heard any on 45s and 50s? PS great demo track.
I do not have any first hand experience with the Type 50 tubes. I find the Type 45 tubes to be the best tube that I have heard from top to bottom. In general the 45 Type tubes have great level of detail, intimacy and linearity and can be implemented in full range duties, as I have done with the Voice Transmission “Tenor”/Fostex full range drivers, without sacrificing anything, when used to drive full range speakers or drivers with 100dB or greater efficiency.

The Type 10/10Y/VT-25/801/VT-62/801A tube is actually better in terms of clarity, neutrality, transparency and “honesty” but the bass performance can lack impact and weight when compared to the Type 45 tubes. So when I decided to have a statement tube amplifier custom built, I went with the 801A., as can be seen driving the TAD TD-4001 Alnico drivers with Beryllium diaphragms.

So it depends on what application you plan to use your tube amp, which you are considering, in; if it is full range duties then the 45’s get my vote, but if you plan to spare the flea-power amp the bass duties, as I have done in the two TAD compression horn driver systems depicted above, then perhaps the Type 50 would yield greater satisfaction and better results.

Let’s face it, these flea power Single Ended Triode/Direct Heated Triode amps put out between 1.5 and 5.6 Watts, do you really want to use any of that power to drive a large bass driver (s)? The 2A3’s and 300B’s, while very good are a compromise for greater power output at the expense of “some” the lower output power Thoragated tungsten filaments triodes’ magic. I had a tube guru once tell me, “the 45’s are everything the 2A3’s and 300B’s which they could be”.

Now these are all generalities, my ViVA Aurora T monoblocks, with two 211/VT-4-C for rectification, a 211/VT-4-C driver and 845 output tube, gives me 18 to 22 watts and most of the magic of the lower powered triode tubes.

There simply is no right answer, recipe or formula. Most people see my collection as a big lot of equipment, I see it as separate optimized and well thought out systems. The key is to use the various components in applications that maximize their strengths and not try to make them into something that they are not.

Have a look at the Thomas Mayer website, VinylSavor, if you are not already familiar with it. Thomas’ blog has a ton of insightful information.

Thomas Mayer VinylSavor Blog
 
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