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Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions (Read 20217 times)
Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #30 - 04/21/05 at 13:44:02
 
The DEC 685 does not allow for adjustment of volume / output unless you use a Sony receiver. . . which I am NOT using.  ;)

I use the input gain controls on the EL34 monoblocks currently, which means that I am not running this pot at the top positions.  If I use a 12AU7 tube, I can run it at a medium position, if I use a 12Ax7 it is at a lower point.  

Probably NOT ideal BUT I do find that with the monoblocks I can really dial in accurately exact matched volumes and get a very solid centered mono sound or center image in stereo; I'm able to compensate for room or tube channel imbalances.  One good thing about Monoblocks with input gain control.

All this talk of Preamps (and how come the newest preamp isn't even on the catalog page?) and Zboxes adding "weight and fullness" makes me wonder. . . . But until I can find the dollars all I'll do is wonder.

When I do have the dollars to play with I need to wonder about:

adding the Zbox
adding the new Pre
having the Monoblocks upgraded to the new output transformer choke power supply

Which would be the one thing that would be the most marked improvement.

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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #31 - 05/21/05 at 23:51:04
 
Well, I felt like adding another post to this forum to show some life here!

I listen to my RL2s everyday, and everyday I marvel at how wonderful and lifelike the sound is that I have here in my system.  The amps have been on about 13 hours today and they sound SWEET.  Seems they get faster, just letting out the notes and rythmns glide and purr.  I'm listening to Suba "Tributo"--a collection of items the late Brazilian producer Suba put out, and its got both acoustic and machine percussion and instruments, and the whole soundstage is artificial but it sounds like a dancefloor in a club, really nice and swinging!  

A few weeks ago I took the JJ E34Ls out and put the Svetlana Winged C EL34s back in.  A more easily flowing sound resulted.  I think there was deeper bass with the JJs, but there's a sweeter treble with the Svets.  So they're staying in for now, now that I've moved the speakers all around and found the best spot for THEM.

In the previous thread I was musing about my next move, but shortly after that Steve announced he was taking orders on the Zbox, and well now I'm hoping my Zbox will soon ship! Cheesy
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nodiak
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #32 - 05/22/05 at 02:28:55
 
   It's funny because I check the Radial forum everyday for any news. Anything is good to hear!
   I saw the Radials when they first came out somewhere....SB mag, or on this website. From the readings it sounded like I would like them, and now I know I do. Hey, here's the proof to me: I am sooo pleased with the veerrryy low key sweet spot , and panoramic soundstage that  I was willing to give up my Zen C (because it couldn't quite drive them to where I needed them to go) ! The C was  the best amp I ever had soundwise, could live with it forever.
   But I think speakers have the toughest job (turn electricity into physical soundwaves) and the way Radials place the music in the room works best for me. I really enjoy walking around the room and the music's "thickness/weight/presence just doesn't shift in intensity that much, and I don't  feel any urgency to get back to the sweetspot (sweatspot). Hangin by the fridge or front door is still in the 75% zone.
   Don
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mullman
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Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #33 - 05/22/05 at 02:50:24
 
Lon,

I for one will be looking forward to your Zbox impressions!



[quote author=Lon  link=1073500136/30#31 date=1116715864]In the previous thread I was musing about my next move, but shortly after that Steve announced he was taking orders on the Zbox, and well now I'm hoping my Zbox will soon ship! Cheesy [/quote]
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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #34 - 05/22/05 at 02:58:48
 
Yes, I'll be sure to add my impressions!  Just try and stop me!

It appears that Eric likes his so much he may never post again! Wink

Don, so glad you are enjoying yours.  I gave up my Select for the Radials as well, basically I chose them as the centerpiece... .. .. The Monoblocks have more than enough power to drive them and are a good match.  I think these speakers are in some ways the jewel of the line.
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mab
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #35 - 05/22/05 at 07:10:24
 
I've been listening to the 2's this weekend a little while my 3's are at Ziggy's.  I must agree that they are great speakers.  There is something special about the presentation that always makes me enjoy listening to them. Smiley

Matt
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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #36 - 05/23/05 at 00:41:10
 
Hope you don't have to wait too long for the 3s to come back Matt!

Yes, always something special about the presentation. . . I like and agree with that.
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ziggy
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #37 - 05/26/05 at 02:53:22
 
Lon,

      Matts 3's should be going out by Friday, if not it will be Tuesday.

    My Z-box was on my front steps this afternoon, I just hooked it up and waiting for things to warm up a bit. I heard it at Steves in Feb. and its been haunting me ever since.  I've been using the Dec343 for about 6 months and now adding the Z-box. Lets see if I hear the same thing I heard at Steves earlier this year.

  Bob Z.
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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #38 - 05/26/05 at 10:39:25
 
Alright Bob!  I'm happy for you and hoping I have the same experience waiting for me in a week or so!

Let us know what the sound is LIKE!
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ziggy
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #39 - 05/28/05 at 06:06:13
 
Lon,

 Tonality.... doesn't change much or very little, but what did change was for the better. I'd have to say the bass has gotten a little tighter if anything.

 Imaging....the first night the image was all over the place. One minute it was bigger than anything I'd ever heard, and the next it was laying on the floor between the two speakers, what a roller coaster ride that was. At times it was way to big, not real at all but then it settled down and got real. I don't think its made any big changes as far as width or depth, but more in a micro way that makes things a lot better. I think this is going to be hard to explain but I'll give it my best shot....

Take the numbers 1 thru 20  with #1's image on the far left of the L speaker #2 just out side the L speaker  # 10 dead center #20 to the far right of the R speaker # 19 just to the  inside of #20  So I guess if you had a good image youd have # 9 and #8 just to the left of dead center and #11 and #12  just to the right of dead center. That would leave #'s 3,4,5,6,7 coming from the left speaker and #'s 13,14,15,16,17,18, coming from the right speaker.  This can get confusing and congested all these instruments coming from the same place.

   Now, put the Z-box  in place and while everthing else remains the (#'s 1,2, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 19, & 20)  the rest of the numbers (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18)  are all sepearated into there own space, and places relieving the congestion and confusion giving a better image overall with out making anything unreal.

 It seams to me that it relieves the stress a bit which is a good thing.
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« Last Edit: 05/28/05 at 06:09:20 by ZYGI »  
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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #40 - 05/28/05 at 10:25:29
 
Thanks for the description Bob, does give me an impression of what it will sound like.  I'm eager to hear my own impressions! Cheesy

I'm probably going to love the sound, AND get a preamp as well.
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« Last Edit: 05/28/05 at 14:43:57 by Lon »  
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Chris K
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #41 - 05/28/05 at 14:39:26
 
Zigster, what are you smokin dude?!!!!
Just kidding. I know what your saying. I had friends on acid trips 20 years ago that would have freaked out while stoned listening to the imaging we get from these amps. Embarrassed Undecided
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« Last Edit: 05/28/05 at 14:39:58 by Chris K »  
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playntheblues
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #42 - 09/03/05 at 11:10:15
 
Hi Lon, Joining this thread kinda late ???  Which el 34 mono blocks have you been talking about?  Also I have a Dodson 217 MK II D DAC that has been upgraded to the 218 version.  A very nice DAC, do  you think the Zbox would improve this some?  Thanks, Guy
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« Last Edit: 09/03/05 at 11:10:52 by playntheblues »  
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Lon
Ex Member



Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #43 - 09/03/05 at 13:43:20
 
Decware offered for a while (and will still build as a custom amp) a monoblock EL34 amplifier that was based on the Integrated, but did not have a preamp stage and was a monoblocked amplifier.  I bought a pair when I decided that the Radials were the most indispensable part of my system. . . . Steve developed this and then goaded me into buying a pair.  I've used them ever since and I really like them. . . . Maybe in hindsight I should have held out til the new Integrated came out but I'm broke and relatively happy right now.

Honestly, it's MY opinion that if you have a really good DAC/transport combo or great cd player and a really good preamp you won't really get dramatic improvement with the ZBox. Others here however may differ in that assessment.
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playntheblues
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Re: Radials and EL34 Monoblocks, some impressions
Reply #44 - 09/03/05 at 15:59:09
 
Lon, how many watts are your mono blocks?
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