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Mini Torii SE Amplifier (Read 60284 times)
erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #75 - 03/02/12 at 00:01:49
 
Indeed, the transformer-derived line level output of the Mini-Torii is the best I have found in terms of integrating a subwoofer.  The gain and impedance relationsip just fits the two very well.

I honestly know but a small fraction aout this than many, Fireblade.  I've learned a bit from focused research and reading, and what I have learned about myself in the process is that, the more I get into it the more I realize how much I don't know!  I have books about audio desgin that were written such a very long time ago, and find the extense of understanding back then really sort of mind boggling impressive.  So much of what is being done today has mostly been done before, yet the Mini-Torii, which was inspired by an old instrument amp, has traits incorporated by an insightful designer.

Nice bike, by the way!
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #76 - 03/02/12 at 01:53:11
 
That's just fine, erik2A3, but you know more than I do about this, so I'm learning from you as I've from many knowledgeable people in this forum.  It's reassuring to confirm by your observations my expectations about the pre-outs for the SUB.

I also admire Steve's work, an uncommon talent indeed.  His articles, business model and the loyalty he has induced from the members of this forum convinced me to take the plunge into this peculiar and very special market niche.

Thanks for the compliments on my bike.  The one you saw earlier and this one (in my avatar) are just file photos.  Mine is a Pearl White 2009 model (exactly as the one in this avatar), but with several important mods and upgrades.  As you can see, I have these two passions Cheesy.

Take care ...

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« Last Edit: 03/02/12 at 01:59:18 by Fireblade »  

Laptop-Foobar2000-Wasapi Ev//WD 1.5Tb HDD//Audioquest Forest USB cbls//HRT MS II+ USB-DAC//Decware Silver Ref IC's//Decware Mini Torii SE//Kimber Kable spkr cbls//Decware DM945's//Velodyne DLS 3500//BJC SUB Cbls//Tripp Lite 500 Isolation Trnsf.//Jellyfish P. Cord
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erik2a3
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Posts: 95
Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #77 - 03/11/12 at 23:06:39
 
And so, the little Torii only gets better, teaching a very expensive pair of 2A3s just how good a single-ended amp can sound.  I had called and talked to Steve about a very minor rolling off of high frequency information, and while talking with him I suddenly remembered -- a bit to my chagrin -- the HF attenuator.  And this was indeed the issue.  A flip of the switch brought back amazingly clear and clean highs. Just a really superb amp!

We share the same 2nd passion!  I had an R6 years ago, sold for something more my age and speed, Cagiva Gran Canyon, and then sold that and saved for my dream, which has a boxer twin Cheesy
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #78 - 03/12/12 at 01:57:40
 
I'm glad there were no real issues with the Mini Torii.  I'm ready to try mine as soon as it gets here!  My new USB/DAC (HRT MS II+) is sounding cool, better than I thought.  I can't wait.

Seems we share similar toys: The bike I had before this one was a 2007 candy apple YZF R1, great machine.  Two bikes before that one, and a mount I had for 5 years, was the 1997 BMW R1200C (boxer twin).  Reliable and very good handling, considering its weight and size.  Quite comfortable too.

After trying to catch up with some superbikes on the road, one day I decided I wanted that new thrill.  I hesitantly sold that BMW and bought a used (2001) CBR929RR, and never looked back.

Age is a concern for me too, as I'm not as eager to take risks as I used to.  So my current bike has seen less of my wild riding than the previous ones.  I may eventually give up on superbikes and get back to standards, but not anytime soon!  Ride safe!

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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #79 - 03/13/12 at 14:16:47
 
You will love the Mini Torii.  In a short mount of time, it has distinguished itself very positively against much more expensive, not to mention much heavier amplifiers.  The first watt of this little gem is one heck of a civilized and refined first watt.  Kind of shatters the notion that the key to good sound in a valve amp is directly related to the size of its output transformers.

An R1? Fast!  Scary fast!  Be Safe!
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #80 - 03/13/12 at 18:19:38
 
I hear you, and I'm so glad you appreciate it in that context of tough competition.  That's why I asked you to report on impressions.  Your experience and familiarity with similar amps is relevant.

The '09 CBR1000RR runs rings around my ex-R1.  Lighter, more available torque, better handling, faster acceleration.  Ignition module and Power Commander III help also, along with the full Akrapovic exhaust.  It's the best one I've ever had!

Enjoy your M-T!
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erik2a3
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Posts: 95
Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #81 - 04/01/12 at 22:11:33
 
I know many of you have done some tube rolling on the Mini T.  I woke up from a short Sunday afternoon nap (a rare luxury!), happened to glance over at my c. 1930s Philco Radio, and remembered it uses a pair of 6F6 outputs.  Thirty seconds later they were installed in the M. Torii.  Well, I have to say that it is really fine sounding!  I find the 6F6 sharper and very clean and clear, where, while still excellent, the 6V6 somewhat warmer, softer.  Next went in two of the four 6L6s that are residing in an amp I bought to rebuild into a dedicated stereo amplifier -- a 1950s vintage Baldwin organ amp.  Such an awesome and flexible little amplifier!  I do prefer the 6L6 or 6F6 types, particularly the latter.  So, this was just to share.
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #82 - 04/02/12 at 17:37:18
 
Thanks for the tip.  I will be trying a couple combinations once my amp is broken-in.  There are several options in my short list.  We'll consider your suggestion.
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #83 - 04/03/12 at 01:21:14
 
Some don't care for the 6F6 type, Fireblade.  It is an older, just very neat as a vintage application, and the pair I happened to try had, for lack of a better way to describe it, a sort of purity of tone and clarity, at lower volumes, than did the particular 6V6s used before.  Also tried both 12au7 and the 12at7, and find the 12au7 not only quieter (I very much dislike background noise) but more delicate and resolving -- this with several CDs of classical guitar music.  For higher volumes and/or heavier music genres with more bass laden passages, a combination of 12at7 and perhaps 6l6 outputs might be really outstanding.  Have fun!
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #84 - 04/03/12 at 02:53:41
 
Interesting.  I would try to settle on a unique driver (i.e., 12aU7), and identify two different pairs of output tubes that would work best for each of those two scenarios, respectively.  I would only switch output tubes depending on the type of music (scenario) involved in each session.

I'm not sure this approach is attainable, but it would be ideal to keep gain in control.  I know from literature (never have had any practical experience rolling tubes) that the 6L6's, as you pointed out, are 'bigger' sounding beam tetrodes than, for example, 6V6's.

For the finer material, 6F6's may be just the ticket, based on your findings.  I would hate to try-and-err without a plan, so I'm trying to rationalize the approach.  Does this make any sense?

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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #85 - 04/03/12 at 11:36:30
 
Fireblade

If there is one thing I have learned about all of this is that there is not right or wrong or better or worse that can be applied universally.  This includes not only input and output tubesin the Mini Torii, but every aspect of listening to music at home.  It is fine for us to share our (highly subjective) impressions of components and elements of those components.  What is simply impossible is to apply or impose those impressions on one another as ultimate 'truths' in all instances.  Our hearing and processing of sound is just to individualized than that, regardless of the fact that the same anatomical structures are used.  Our response and opinions differ as much as preferences of food, beverage, art, or anything else.   The only mistake you can makemis try everything you might be interested in as far as valves for this amp, and based on that, perhaps select what seems to work the best in most instances.  I have a great aversion for statements and declarations I have found on forums where one individual will criticize the choice or tastes of someone else simply because thay aren't aligned with his or her own.

So play with your amp and enjoy the search!  It's ability to be personalized is one of its virtues -- and by all means continue to have fun in the process! Smiley
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erik
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Fireblade
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #86 - 04/03/12 at 16:50:15
 
"The only mistake you can makemis try everything you might be interested in as far as valves for this amp, and based on that, perhaps select what seems to work the best in most instances"

Why would this be a mistake?  I mean, we all know this is highly subjective.  But out of the significant number of possible alternatives, one has to try at least what seems to work for other people and maybe increase the probabilities of shortening the selection path.  It is certainly better than trying this on a blind draw.

On the general subject, though, I agree with you. Thanks.

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Les Lammers
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Posts: 138
Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #87 - 04/03/12 at 20:39:44
 
FB,

Our amps will be brand new and I plan to run it stock until it settles in.
I will go real slow rolling tubes until then. O.K. I'll likely plug in a pair of 350B, after 100 hours or so.

"The only mistake you can makemis try everything you might be interested in as far as valves for this amp, and based on that, perhaps select what seems to work the best in most instances"

The above can be a mistake because you will go broke and crazy...not necessarily in that order. Don't ask me how I know that. Wink

Les
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« Last Edit: 04/03/12 at 21:57:25 by Les Lammers »  
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #88 - 04/03/12 at 23:38:37
 
Let me correct my incomplete first thing in the morning response: certainly I meant that the only mistake you can make is to NOT try,within reason, any ideas in the way of suitable tubes for this amplifier.  What I or anyone one else likes can be a start, but your ears are your ears and of course you must try for yourself.  Some find the old 6F6 soft compared to the 6v6 or 6l6, and may even question its use at all.  This is an example of the sort of imposing of ideas and opinions that I mentioned above.

Fireblade: your interest in getting the best possible you can from the Mini Torii is obvious and a very positive thing!  It's this kind of enthusiasm that is encouraging!
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« Last Edit: 04/03/12 at 23:46:01 by erik2a3 »  

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erik
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erik2a3
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Re: Mini Torii SE Amplifier
Reply #89 - 04/04/12 at 01:51:49
 
Mini Torii chassis has beem removed from wooden bass, and headphone jack will be installed tomorrow.  I must credit Decware for a very nicely wired little amp, with very clean lead dress and classisc ground buss.  textbook soldering, and quite a bit better than what I've seen from, surprisingly, well known companies.  Truly nicely done, and that makes me happy.  I've always used carbon comp resistors in grid stop positions, but the metal films off the wiper of the volume controls are doing just dandy.

In case some of you might ne interested: I know of an extremely quiet, tube rectified and regulated amplifier that is DEAD quiet with my Grado phones.  Wow.  I have a couple of others that are quiet, but the noise floor on this thing is just really amazingly low.  The gain seems perfect for the headphones.

I'm referring of course to the Mini Torii, and comparing it to an otherwise very highly regarded and well reviewed single ended amp, the Moth Audio si 2a3, which I still very, very much like to use from time to time with Klipshorns and Lowthers.  I'm sure some of you had the phone jack installed, but I didn't so will get that done tomorrow.

Thanks for doing such a nice wiring job on our Mini Torii!!! At times in the past I have cringed at work I have seen inside tube amps, despite the super snazzy looking exterior.
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erik
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