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EQUIPMENT FORUMS >> ZP3 / ZMC1,2,3 >> What tube's are you guys using?
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Message started by JD on 01/31/13 at 17:11:40

Title: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 01/31/13 at 17:11:40

To appease my Decware addiction I just ordered a ZP3.  In perusing the forum I didn't see too much info on tubes used.  I am going to stockpile a few so I'll be ready to roll when it arrives in 2-3 months time. Curious to know people's positive and negative tube impresssions.

Thanks in advance.

JD

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 01/31/13 at 17:59:52

I've tried about six rectifier tubes in my ZP3 and the clear winner for me is an old RCA 5Y3GT that just really anchors the tone foundation for me and also gives the most natural, unprocessed presentation of the six.

I bought a pair of Raytheon 12AX7s from Mike here on the board that really nail down that tube type for me, a matched pair. Interestingly I've found that the 12AU7 spot is very influential to the sound and I have handfuls of this tube type. I alternate lately a Telefunken, Mullard and Raytheon (I think, maybe RCA, supplied by Decware). It's taken me weeks to get to the point where the sound is stabilized and I can really make solid judgments. . . . This preamp is a lot like the CSP2+ in that aspect.

In the OA3 position I've also tried six tubes, and also two OB3 tubes. The Sylvania bottle type OA3 that Steve sent is very good, and I also am still using an RCA bottle type. OA3. An OB3 is interesting with this preamp, but in my system always just comes up a bit short in the weight and heft areas.

I know you're really going to enjoy this preamp!

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by marky on 01/31/13 at 18:19:30

I`ve  liberated a Mullard GZ34 from my old amp which has been replaced by SE341`s, and put the stock back.
Looking forward to popping it in the ZP3 after new amps and cables have settled down.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 02/02/13 at 01:01:18

appreciate it guys thanks

JD

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by marky on 02/03/13 at 19:37:15

JD, you must be checking out a variety of tubes in anticipation.
I did the same and have a small selection.
No real favs between TFK, Brimar, Mullard, and a P.miniwatt in the 12au7 spot.
GE, RCA, Mullard, Phillips, for rectifiers of different configs, ie, 5Y3GT,
5R4GY etc.
0A3 pos....Raytheon
12ax7, seems I`m happy with Sylvania x3 mica.
Still a few to get but there comes a time when you say
enough for now. Well maybe a 12at7 or two.

Ones that got away for now....square getters....bugleboys...
the usual suspects,
Some GZ34 rectifiers are big bucks. My Mullard wasn`t to bad. Listening with it in now sounds good....or different.
Good hunting   :)

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 08/23/13 at 00:40:41

After a few months of letting it season I'm really enjoying the ZP3.  Using an early fifties rca 5r4gy and oa3 teamed with nos mullards all around.  Rega p6 and ortofon black 2m (with 2mm spacer) cartridge are all combining for an awesome sound.  
You can't beat vinyl.

JD

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 08/23/13 at 01:28:47

Grrrrrreeeaaat!

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 12/17/13 at 01:46:55

gonna give my mullards a rest for a little. very happy with the sound, warm but not syrupy.  great detail and airy. fantastic sound.  but just in the mood to explore and have a back up set or 2 or 3...ha. rolling in two 63 mazda chrome plates and a 56 radiotechnique. will let you know results.  just got a new laptop so hopefully i'll be able to post pics of albums being played. tonite it is anoushka shankar's newest. fantastic

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Acetone on 12/15/14 at 17:17:58

Anyone ever try russian 6N2P in the 12AX7 positions ?

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Acetone on 03/24/15 at 18:42:09

Anyone ever try  12AU7's in the 1st 3 spots of ZP3 ?

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by mark58 on 03/24/15 at 18:54:56

I don't think you can do that.  I have tried many 12AU7 and it's variants, maybe more than a dozen, in the furthest back slot and about a half dozen 12AX7s and variants in the front two slots. Current tubes include two RCA Triple Mica Black Plate 5751s and a RCA Triple Mica Black Plate 5814 in the 12AU7 slot....a winning combo.

PS...my guess is that you could use the 6N2P in the 12AX7 slots but i wouldn't do it until you find someone who has used them with success or you ask Steve.  They are very inexpensive though...a good thing.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Acetone on 04/03/15 at 15:43:05

Steve D advised you can use 12AU7 in first 3 slots of ZP3 but, gain will be greatly reduced if used in either 1st or 2nd slot...or both. My listening level is around 9PM with ZP3 into Superzen so I may give a 12AU7 a shot just out of curiosity.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Archie on 08/17/15 at 17:05:05

I've been using Raytheon 12AX7 tubes in the front two positions of my ZP3 but I bumped and broke the lead tube.  I'm thinking of trying Cryoset's cryo'd Mullards.  I have no idea  if there is a difference in Mullard 12AX7s and what Cryoset is offering.  Anybody use this tube or have any information?  They sell for about $50 a matched pair.  I've used other Cryoset tubes with good results.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 08/17/15 at 18:02:56

I say try it out. I've started using TAD cryo'd from cryoset.com with good result (I've liked all the TAD tubes I've tried before, EL84 and KT-66 types).

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Syd on 08/17/15 at 20:27:21

Archie, the 12AX7 spots dont have to be matched or even the same make which makes rolling easier and more fun as you can buy singles.
My `65 Mullard 12AX7  adds Mullard texture. It`s coupled with a Sylvania x3 mica 12AX7. The combinations are endless.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Archie on 08/17/15 at 22:57:55

So, trying to keep it simple (ha!) I'd like to go with the Cryoset tubes.  Should I try two different tubes, say a TAD and a Mullard?  Then I could swap them around in the #1 position.  I still have one good Raytheon and the stock tubes.  Cryoset has a single Mullard but a couple choices in the TADs.  Prices can get pretty high on the TADs.  They also have a new Gold Lion that they seem to be very fond of.  But $58 for a single Super Cryo'd version!

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by AndyG on 10/23/15 at 03:04:50

I've had my ZP3 for about a year and half of moderate/heavy use. Awesome phono stage. Recently noticed the Valve Art 274B it shipped with has developed a rattle. Sound is still reasonable out of it, but the rattle bugs me and I'm sure there is a better rectifier anyway. Can I use any 274B, 5R4G or 5Y3GT? Any recommendations?

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by mark58 on 10/23/15 at 11:10:01

I don't remember what came stock in my ZP3 but before it arrived I had bought a 50s RCA 5Y3G and have been happy with it...haven't rolled this position. An example below...there are quite a few 5Y3Gs of different brands available on ebay.  Mark.

PS...by the way, I have two Valve Art 274Bs that were sent as stock in a Taboo MK III and a CSP3, both rattle a bit and make weird tube noises in quiet parts. This is the best tube for me in the CSP3 so it has remained there but I will buy a Cryoed version from cryoset that, last I looked, sells them for about $25.  Others haven't reported noise from these cryoed tubes.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-RCA-5Y3G-Radio-Tube-Results-1375-1150-/401013710178?hash=item5d5e479d62:g:3ecAAOSwpDdVD1w~


Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 10/23/15 at 11:58:19

Be careful using 274Bs other than the Valve Art---the Valve Art is really electrically more similar to a 5U4 type, and the "real" 274Bs are quite stressed in many of the Decware components, shortening their life, possibly causing damaging failure.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Archie on 12/02/15 at 16:58:40


Quote:
... Recently noticed the Valve Art 274B it shipped with has developed a rattle. Sound is still reasonable out of it, but the rattle bugs me ...



About a year ago (or more) I bought a pair of cryo'd Valve  Art 274Bs for my ZP3 and CSP3.  Lately the one in the ZP3 has been making a high pitched noise.  The noise goes away for a while if I tap the tube with a fingernail.  It doesn't seem to effect the sound and I can't hear it from any reasonable distance.  I think I remember Steve mentioning that some rectifiers can make noise like this.

I just got an email from Cryoset with a 10% off coupon good for December.  Time to buy a couple 12AX7s to try in the ZP3.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 12/02/15 at 19:46:19


Archie wrote on 12/02/15 at 16:58:40:
I just got an email from Cryoset with a 10% off coupon good for December.  Time to buy a couple 12AX7s to try in the ZP3.


A few months ago I bought a pair of TAD 12AX7 and a 12AU7 from cryoset. I really like the 12AX7, tight and open. The 12AU7 is the same way. . . I've been alternating it with a Seimens 12AU7 which is warmer and fuzzier. . .nice combo with the TAD 12AX7s.

The TADs took a week or so to burn in.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Archie on 12/02/15 at 23:32:28

I ordered a TAD and a Mullard 12AX7 from Cryoset.  I got the standard offerings in both -- I think.  There are a lot of TADs but I wasn't sure that all were 12AX7s.  From what I gather I can swap them out in the first position in the ZP3 and get a different sound depending on the tube.  With my new Kontrapunkt b cart I am hoping to really hear something.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 12/03/15 at 02:56:20

Cool. Yes, you can run different 12AX7s in each spot. . . I've always run matched.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 12/07/15 at 17:17:42

Well, I found that the Siemens ECC82 and two matched cryo'd TAD 12AX7 tubes are the ones I can't bear to take out of the ZP3. And building around that I'm getting phenomenal vinyl playback, now unquestionably the very best sound my system will put out.

I have the Rega RP3 on the old (single ball bearing) style VooDoo Cable Iso Pods instead of stock feet, and these sit on a PS Audio PerfectWave PowerBase fed by an AC-12 power cord. The ZP3 and CSP2+ both sit on a PowerBase fed by an AC-12 as does the Torii Mk III. The AC-12s are plugged in to the P5 which is also fed by an AC-12 and sits on a PowerBase. The ZP3 sits on a set of three Aurios. The P5, CSP2+ and the Torii Mk III both sit on VooDoo Cable Iso Pods, the new three bearing models. Interconnects between the ZP3 and CSP2+ and from the CSP2+ into the Torii Mk III are all VooDoo Cable Stradivarius.

I have the TTPSU sitting on four Herbie's Audio Lab Iso-Cups with Green Moss Quartz balls, resting directly on the shelf of the Samson Rack. The TTPSU's wall wart power supply is plugged in to the PowerBase that the RP3 is resting on.

This is giving me the best analog sound I've ever had in my home. I'm trying hard not to change anything and lose the magic! I will change out the Aurios and the single bearing Iso Pods to VooDoo Cable Iso Pods (new three bearing) in a week or so when I get another set in. These are just a bit better than the Aurios and earlier Iso Pods as footers. In time I'd like to upgrade my turntable, my dream would be a Rega RP10, probably with an Alpheta cartridge and an SUT for the ZP3. This would represent selling off all my excess audio stuff and/or a long saving. . . not sure it would ever happen but that is what I think it would take to really make a significant jump in vinyl playback sound quality.

Though I think the Rega RP3 is a significant factor here, what really makes this playback shine is the ZP3. I think Steve should be proud every day of the ZP3--it's an amazing phono preamp. Just a heartbeat for a great turntable. . . pumping life into music reproduction.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 04/09/16 at 21:28:19

Looking for variations of rectifiers you guys are using and suggestions on what is working best. Currently using an early 50's RCA 5y3gt. Also wanted to let you guys know if you have not tried a 60's or 50's tungsram oa3 you should give it a shot. I've got 10 pair so I'm set but boy do they add sparkle to my Torii III, CSP2+ and ZP3. Best of all they are extremely cheap, I've gotten mine from Hungary.

JD

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by JD on 04/09/16 at 23:47:10

especially curious if anyone has compared 6106 vs gz34 types.

jd

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Martindfletcher on 05/18/17 at 17:53:55

Can you use the 274B in the rectifier position? If yes what would it do. To the sound?

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 05/18/17 at 18:26:20

You can use the Valve Art 274B as it is internally very similar to a 5U4 rectifier. Other 274Bs will probably have a  shortened life in this component if the component is similar to the other Decware components.

I don't remember trying the Valve Art 274B in the ZP3 though I have in the CSP2+ and modded Zen C amp that I have. I found it to be a bit foo bright and edgy for my tastes and for the other tubes I was using.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Acetone on 05/19/17 at 15:35:24

My ZP3 came with the valve-art 274B. I run a mullard GZ34 in it...my fave!

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 05/22/17 at 20:28:01

The last few days I've been running an Amperex 6211 in the 12AU7 spot with great success. Very tight and clean sound, dynamic, but not at all bright or edgy. These were easy to find cheap and I can use them in the Taboo Mk III as well.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by jorgen on 05/31/17 at 18:54:25

Tried to call Steve today with no luck. Can I ask you guys for advise; In the rectifier spot I want to try a 5R4GY, on the packet it says similar to CV 717. Can this tube be used? It looks like tank I have to say.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Syd on 06/01/17 at 15:46:20

5R4GY`s are just fine. I`ve used RCA`s for ZP3 and CSP2+ for a long time.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by jorgen on 06/01/17 at 20:34:48

Thanks Syd.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Syd on 06/02/17 at 14:45:55

No, thank you Jorgen! .When you posted I checked out the e-bay listings and found this one.  I`m a fanboy of all tubes with disc getters. This one wasn`t getting away so I`ve just bought it   8-).



http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/391765269145?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by jorgen on 06/06/17 at 21:44:12

Here is the one I'm using. Some might say it's not a looker, but solidity is a quality as well.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by jorgen on 06/06/17 at 21:48:33

http://www.thetubestore.com/Tubes/Other-Rectifier-Tube-Types/JAN-Cetron-5R4WGB


I miswrote the first post about this tube. This is the one I wanted to try. Sounds good to me.

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by doukhobar on 07/05/18 at 16:49:41

Can one roll a 12AT7 in the 12AU7 spot in a ZP3?

How about in the 2 12AX7 spots - is a 12AT7 ever acceptable;e?

Title: Re: What tube's are you guys using?
Post by Lon on 07/05/18 at 17:06:07

I don't believe that a 12AT7 is usable in the ZP3 in either position.

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