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Mini Torii SE Amplifier (Read 77049 times)
Raduschka
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #60 - 12/07/11 at 02:38:32
 
hello everyone, I am about to buy a diy audio note DAC  (kit 2.1 B) and would like to know if its higher output voltage (2.5 rms) is compatible with the Mini Torii, I remember reading somewhere that the amp would actually benefit from higher input voltages, but I wouldn't sleep tight if I didn't double check. Thank you in advance
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Rivieraranch
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #61 - 12/07/11 at 12:31:47
 
The MINI TORII can do more with lower voltages than a TABOO can. I think you will do fine with a 2.5 volt output in the MINI
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Raduschka
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #62 - 12/07/11 at 12:54:02
 
thank you!
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Raduschka
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #63 - 12/22/11 at 23:02:13
 
good Lord, I soldered together an AudioNote 2.1b D.A.C. and it is breaking in right now, sounding incredibly different from my tubed CD player that I am now using as a transport only. I tried to use a pair of EZ81 rectifiers (through adapters) instead of the native 6x4 with very poor results... I only have 1 pair of RFT (nos) EZ81 tubes, I wonder if the poor results are due to these particular tubes... By poor I mean limited depth of soundstage basically, yuck, it all sounded like a very detailed brickwall in front of me!!! Could the EZ81  be an intrinsically bad idea on a mini torii????? Rivieraranch?
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Rivieraranch
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #64 - 12/23/11 at 01:47:36
 
I am sorry to hear about the problems you have had using the EZ81 rectifier.

I bought a pair of NOS RFT rectifiers from Jim McShane and the adapters you mention. I never compared the 6X4 with the EZ81 because I used my EZ81's and adapters exclusively with 6Y6G power tubes.

The 6Y6 proved too much for the 6X4 rectifier, which is why I tried  the EZ81 in the first place. When I spoke to Steve Deckert about the problems I was having with the 6X4 he conceded that the 6X4 is the "weak link" in that amp. However, the 6X4 was chosen because it sounded very good.

For me, trying the EZ81 was more of an experiment. I am using 6L6WGTB power tubes and 6X4W rectifiers right now. I might swap in the EZ81 to make a comparison when using the 6L6 family. I doubt there is anything wrong with the RFT rectifiers.

You should also consider that you could use a 9-pin 6V4 (EZ80) rectifier as well. Since you already bought the adapters you could try that alternative.

Steve also mentioned that the currently produced MINI TORII is now using the 9-pin EZ81 rectifier. I doubt it could be bad.      
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Raduschka
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #65 - 12/23/11 at 01:54:37
 
yes, I had the same line of thought, i doubt it could be bad since Steve is using it... Could it be that he modified the circuit somehow to accommodate the ez81??   The 6x4 sounds significantly better, not just different... Hmmm... I am puzzled. The adapters are great. I wonder about the other type of rectifier...

Steve meant weak link in terms of availability I suppose?? Or current?
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Rivieraranch
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #66 - 12/23/11 at 10:34:54
 
Weak link in the sense that if the power tubes are biased real high (since the unit is self-biasing) they stress the rectifier and could blow it. If your 6X4's are glowing too bright then you are headed for trouble.

You should ask Steve if there is any change to the internals with the move from the 6X4 to the EZ81.
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #67 - 02/29/12 at 00:09:07
 
Hello!  I've been having a little trouble logging in, but a call to Decware and very nice chat with Steve himself helped take of things.  As of the last post on the Mini Torii, the one my dear wife ordered for me was wrapped up in holiday ribbons and paper -- and I hadn't a clue about!  This amp is among the very first I haven't built myself (what a treat!), and Marie ( said dear wife) mentioned again how genuinely kind, friendly, and helpful everyone at Decware was to her.  You see, I've been looking at Decware amps from the beginning, and we almost purchased one of the original kits so many years go it's kind of scary.  And even then the absolute customer oriented nature of this small company was obvious -- only helpful, with no pressure of any kind.  I have built a large number of amps since that time, from OTL, to different varieties of 2a3,300b and so forth....ac filaments, dc filaments, etc., etc., including amplifiers from Moth Audio, which we bought as a chassis and bunch of parts, Bottlehead, Welborne Labs, and others.  And I love all those amps; they each have something to offer, but not equally in the same situation.

And then comes along a diminutive but not tiny, and very light weight amp called the Mini Torii. I was and am thrilled with it.  With our Lowthers and klipschhorns, and La scalas, it is without a doubt the best amp we have in terms of power supply rejection.  Hooked up to La Scalas, the sense of clarity, presence and surprising bass weight from such a small amplifier was completely not in keeping with its size and weight.  

The input jacks are not isolated from the chassis with shouldered washers, suggesting perhaps a ground plane.  But I am intrigued to get in to see exactly the kind of ground scheme is used and to discover what makes this marvelous little amp as quiet as it is with Lowther horns, which as many of you know can be ruthless in that respect.

And so, this first post has gone on long enough.  Thanks to Decware and Steve for being so helpful to a wife who wanted to surprise her husband with a genuine Decware valve amp for Christmas.  I haven't tube rolled in years but have some old Philco radios I worked on with output tubes that will work in this amp!  So for now... erik2a3
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Have fun!
erik
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Raduschka
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #68 - 02/29/12 at 00:20:09
 
yay erik2a3, glad to have some news from a new mini T owner! As for me, today I regranished the insides of my diy audio note cabinets and decided to experiment with squares of wool attached to the rays of the speaker basket (to soften sound reflections from the backside of the paper cone). Amazing results!!!! My girlfriend graced me with a listen in and she cried a little because I played the song that always makes her cry apparently... Of all songs it is Roger Waters' 3rd track on Amused to Death Smiley I take it she doesn't quite understand the lyrics, as she is French speaking, how else could one cry to that Smiley I'll have to check with her.
My mini is also dead quiet, amazingly so with sensitive speakers, but it has developed an intermittent noise on one channel. No big deal yet, I dread having to ship it back to Steve, since it weighs half a ton. Regards
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Lon
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #69 - 02/29/12 at 00:44:41
 
Congrats Erik! Welcome to the forum!
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Rivieraranch
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #70 - 02/29/12 at 00:54:05
 
Maybe you will become Erik 6V6?
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #71 - 02/29/12 at 01:21:37
 
Hi erik2a3!  I'm interested in your early experiences with the Mini, as I ordered mine mid January (along with the DM945 speakers), and I still have to wait a while for its delivery.  Evidently, having previous technical exposure, you have the opportunity to judge its performance relative to the other amps at your disposal.  So, keep the comments coming.  Congrats!
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #72 - 02/29/12 at 23:53:07
 
Thanks for the warm welcome!

Raduschka: you know, Roger Waters and other former associates have written songs that are downright emotional regardless of the lyrics.  Melodies rather than accompanying words seem to stick with most, and others, such as some of Brian Eno's 'Ambient Music' can be pretty intense in that respect.  She sounds like a nice and sensitive girl!

Hi, Lon and Riviereraranch!  erik6v6?  Not so bad I guess!  I used to listen to a pair of very vintage pp 6v6 monoblocks that sounded ok, yet not even close to the single-lunged Mini-Torii.  2A3s are just kind of like old friends, I guess, and what I use in my headphone amp.

Greetings Fireblade - well, I suspect I sort of anticipated a question along the lines of what you asked, but....whew....that one could take some time to answer, and would involve a bunch of revisiting amps and doing the best I could to conduct a reiable comparison between them.  I do have some technical background, and am able to explain some of what I hear relative to circuit topology, but must confess I've learned that a technical background and design experience don't always enable one to difinitively state in a universal sort of way what is better or worse.  This hobby is just very much too subjective for that, and it seems to me the best anyone can do is draw conclusions about personal preferences that very likely may not by shared by others.   As crazy as it sounds, because it probably is crazy -- is that I have amplifiers I prefer for different reasons and different kinds of music.  And I tend to go through listening phases where for some weeks I might really be into classical Baroque, and other times prefer Bill Bruford, King Crimson, Genesis, Yes, No, ( ok...bad joke!) or Miles Davis, Eberhard Weber or Segovia.  And Audioslave, Tool, Perect Circle, Dream Theater -- much harder stuff that to sound 'right' may be better with a harder hitting amp with characteristics that heavy a tight and controlled bass response.

Although the Mini-Torii is still new, I can say that it has a certain 'rightness' in terms of tone and evidently even-handed frequency response that, while at first seemed mildly rolled off on the top (think I have that one figured out) prompted me to share with the people at Lowther America that I think it's probably the best amp I have used with my beloved Lowther PM2As.  I have other amps that sound really good with them, but leave me thinking about a few things I may want to change in terms of perhaps mild reductions in feedback, interstage coupling capacitor selection (absolutely NOT necessarily more expensive -- I've learned a thing or two about that).  The Mini-Torri was so quiet I literally thought I had forgotten to connect the speakers.  With Lowthers, that's saying something.

Feel free to email about this if you like -- I worry I write too much sometimes.  
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Have fun!
erik
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #73 - 03/01/12 at 01:00:04
 
Fireblade:  Reading what I wrote above, I suspect I haven't helped answer your question.  Something I discovered with the Min-Torri, but have had hints of it in the past, is that one not need spend several hundred dollars on a pair of output tubes in order to get not only satisfactory, but amazing sound reproduction.  singe-ended triodes, and triode amps in general have a sort of cult-like following (not unlike lots of tubes, actually....we seem to gather in tribes!), but I have very, very expensive 2A3s that do not better, in their associated circuits, the Mini-Torri's 6V6.   Many of you might want avert your eyes, but I recently bought a small T-class amp that with some of the heavy mentioned above sounds pretty good.  What it makes me think about, though, particularly after talking briefly with Steve, is....well, the Mini-Torri's bigger, more powerful sibling.  That will be a bit down the road, because I am really enjoying the Mini-T!  I've got some old but still good output tubes to try that is going to be fun.
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Have fun!
erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #74 - 03/01/12 at 13:36:35
 
Thanks for sharing those thoughts, erik2A3, I really enjoyed them.  In did not have a specific question, just an invitation to share your initial impressions, from the point of view of someone more versed than myself in this field and sharing the same amp.

I concur with your valid observation that everything, in the end, is personal and subjective.  Nevertheless, some of your statements already shed some light in my own conceptual image about the Mini Torii's strengths and weaknesses.

For someone looking for a do-it-all amp, like me, and willing to use it within a modest listening space, I chose the Mini-Torii (also suggested to me by Steve), because of it's versatility.  Your mentioning of the cult about SETs in general, is very true, to the point that have made me forget sometimes the reasons why I selected the Mini in the first place.

For the kinds of music I prefer, mostly classic be-bop jazz and classical (both orchestral and chamber music), I thought the Mini Torii could meet those requirements, if constrained within the physical dimensions of a small listening room.

Having pre-outs should also help with my subwoofer, a requirement for jazz listening and smaller (yet highly sensitive) speakers.  Beam tubes like the 6V6 are better at bass, too.  Best of both worlds also, as you have pointed out, the 6V6's being competitive with the best triode tubes out there.

Don't worry about writing too much, as for the interested parties in this forum, it is never enough!  Enjoy your Mini and keep us posted on new insights about it ...   Smiley


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« Last Edit: 03/01/12 at 13:41:33 by Fireblade »  

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