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JJ 6CA7s (Read 16875 times)
will
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Re: JJ 6CA7s
Reply #90 - 03/08/13 at 23:58:51
 
Yeah this is an interesting exploration. Thanks for your latest theories and thoughts on sound development and objectives. How the power is dealt with is bound to impart character, even if it is transparent by eliminating the noise, so this is a good point. Once the system gets to this level of revelation, these little things can sound pretty big.  I still think the Pre-facter, or lack thereof is a real player here. I get a really pretty different sound from just a few Db shift with the software pre in Pure Music. I actually have never liked the Zstage with the Tranquility, partly because the output of the tubes I was preferring, and have a good variety of (12AT7), combined with the Tranquillity output of 2.25 or so, I got distortion, so I just never fully explored.

But I do play with the software "pre" gain in Pure Music a fair bit to adjust weight and intensity, but only by a Db or two either way off flat. This has proven to be a very useful tool.

I am having the Zstage modded now for two inputs and hopefully to handle the high output of the Tranquility. It has been back at Decware for a couple weeks today, so hopefully it is on the way back to me by now. I really need the Zstage, gain and tube-wise with my Oppo, but now I will be able to explore the Tranquility through it too. I have no doubt that the CSP has a different presentation and certainly more flexibility, but I look forward to the experiments with the Zstage/tranquility. See if it helps or hurts.

The Tranquility is a very refined and worked out sound from months of double blind testing and modding, and it may be that running another circuit between hurts it...This was my first impression when I have tried it briefly before. ON the other hand, I would not doubt if I find a good tube and balance that makes me like the Zstage in the chain with more easy exploration.

And though I can ride gain with the software pre now to great effect, there was something I really liked about gain riding with the Zstage and ZDAC, how the gain and the tube effected that was quite good, especially with the flexibility of different tubes.

I can imagine that having three source gain controls must be very trippy, and probably a bit confounding at times!

The beat goes on!
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Mac mini, Tranquility DAC, modded Oppo 83, CSP3, TORII MkIV, Morrow SP-7, HR-1s...VHaudio DIY, Grover, MAC ICs...PSAudio P5, PI Audio and DIY power cables, HerbiesAudioLab feet and tube dampers
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Lon
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"Love without
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Re: JJ 6CA7s
Reply #91 - 03/11/13 at 15:55:17
 
will, just to finish up our conversation about 5Y3 tubes. . . .

I had so many changes going on I shouldn't have been auditioning tubes but as you know sometimes it's hard not to. The PS Audio PowerBase has been going through changes that have made evaluating difficult, but seems to be coming around now and settling in (electrically). I did some further listening with the 5Y3 and though we're not listening to the same brands, I begin to see what you mean about constraint. I'd been listening to box sets of solo piano and small acoustic instrument ensembles and the 5Y3 really excelled and conveying the intimacy and nuances. But with larger scale recordings. . .the dynamic envelope is smaller, and some imaging doesn't quite bloom as it can. So last night I put in my favorite RCA 5U4GB tubes and not only is the dynamic contrast and the bloom slightly boosted, but the heft to the lower frequencies is back. I wish the Valve Art 274B had anywhere near the heft these RCAs have, I'd keep them in, but I'm consigning those to back up status, and will probably add the 5Y3 in now and then for smaller scale recordings, they really do have a magic that I like, reminding me of the sound of the Dynaco/AR stereo I grew up with in some ways, especially as I always had to play my music rather quietly on that system and there is a lot of character at low volumes with these tubes.

Anyway, my experimenting is over with rectification for a spell, and I'm relaxing back into my favorite rectifiers playing music. The PowerBase is proving very interesting. If I hadn't addressed vibration control before, the PowerBase would have amazed me with its handling of that aspect of the audio spectrum, and I think the further electrical isolation is proving to be a benefit, though I'm not convinced all of what it can do is now being done, some more break in seems in order. I already spent my last audio dollars for the time being on ordering another PowerBase to put under my Power Plant Premier. Then . . . it will be time to pack up the system and take it to Ohio.
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« Last Edit: 03/11/13 at 16:12:02 by Lon »  

Decware:ERR,HR-1,ZP3,CSP2+,Torii Mk III,PS Audio PWT+PWD MkII,PowerBases,PPP,AC-12 pcs, Denon DBP-A100, Denon DCD-A100,Rega RP3 +TTPSU,white belt+Exact2, VooDoo Cable:Evo,Ultra Linear, Iso-PodMapleshade:Double Heiix Plus.Samsonv2+v3 +4" platforms,Herbie's Iso-Cup
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will
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Posts: 1147
Re: JJ 6CA7s
Reply #92 - 03/11/13 at 17:11:01
 
Yes too many changing factors happening at once can be hard. It amazes me how different rectifiers effect the sound, but I don't suppose it should since it is the beginning of the tube chain...giving power to the other tubes.

And those 5U4GBs being so "of their own" in terms of character, particularly bass depth. The ones I have (at least the tall bottles) also tend to have a different mid presence...some sort of sweet openness that is not hard, and works particularly well with texture, at least relative to the solidity of most STs.

I think this is one of things that has so far kept my attention with the Valve Art 274. They sort of bridge the solidity of 5U4G-STs and the openness of the tall bottle GBs. They are not easy though, and for me require more messing around with other tubes to reach a synergy that is not too open, forward, or hardish in the mids.

Wow. Packing up just your audio stuff for Ohio is going to be a process! It should be very interesting to have different rooms and see how that effects your systems!
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« Last Edit: 03/11/13 at 17:12:10 by will »  

Mac mini, Tranquility DAC, modded Oppo 83, CSP3, TORII MkIV, Morrow SP-7, HR-1s...VHaudio DIY, Grover, MAC ICs...PSAudio P5, PI Audio and DIY power cables, HerbiesAudioLab feet and tube dampers
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Lon
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"Love without
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Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 7197
Re: JJ 6CA7s
Reply #93 - 03/11/13 at 17:26:10
 
I really like one pair of tall bottle RCA 5U4 that I have but one became inoperable in the Toriis (works in the CSP2+s but I don't prefer that tube type there). It does have a similar midrange to the Valve Arts, but a much better lower end. I don't like the lower end on the Valve Arts at all, and without bass knobs I can't make certain adjustments, and they just don't deliver with the tube sets I have. I'm not going to attempt to build around them. In time I may try to get a pair of tall bottle RCA as I have; got these from tgarden.

I'm quite curious to see what my next listening room will be like. It's going to be smaller, and will open out to a dining room on one side (but not forming a big rectangle, the dining room is off to the front, so it's like an elbow altogether) and a stairway leading upstairs. I think the upstairs bedroom system will likely sound much better than here, the bedroom is bigger and I can manage to really set it up for listening. Looking forward to that, and my gal will be happy when she comes to visit.
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« Last Edit: 03/11/13 at 17:26:52 by Lon »  

Decware:ERR,HR-1,ZP3,CSP2+,Torii Mk III,PS Audio PWT+PWD MkII,PowerBases,PPP,AC-12 pcs, Denon DBP-A100, Denon DCD-A100,Rega RP3 +TTPSU,white belt+Exact2, VooDoo Cable:Evo,Ultra Linear, Iso-PodMapleshade:Double Heiix Plus.Samsonv2+v3 +4" platforms,Herbie's Iso-Cup
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Lon
Seasoned Member
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"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 7197
Re: JJ 6CA7s
Reply #94 - 03/16/13 at 15:50:12
 
God help me, I keep wanting to love these Valve Art 274B. I had popped them back in the second system when i put my favorite RCA 5U4G back in the Torii Mk III, and listening in the second system yesterday I heard what seemed to be a change in the sound so I put them back in the Torii Mk III to test. Well, there are also two PowerBases that are breaking in in that system and the sound is improving in that aspect a bit. With the Valve Arts back in I finally have more low end than I did before, and still have that midrange vividness and ambiance these tubes bring to the plate. So I'm leaving them in. These are the cryo'd version, and possibly still breaking in or finally broken in, and the JJ6CA7 tubes in the Mk III are also the cryo'd version, received from cryoset.com at the same time. will has noted that the JJs take a long time to break in in cryo'd version, and that is probably true in my case as well. At least everything is slowly getting better rather than the opposite!

orange crush has sent me a pair of 5U4s that should be very interesting, I'll leave the Valve Arts in til they arrive. (THANKS!)

I'm surprisingly impressed with the PowerBase units. I have not been a fan of Sorbothane in the past, and these incorporate it within the massive feet and the inner suspension. Steve Herbelin is opposed to Sorbothane unilaterally it seems from talking with him about it, but Paul McGowan has told me that Sorbothane is very effective when used appropriately and things are constructed around its limitations. Appears he's done that well as even though the PWD and PWT and the PPP were well equipped with Herbie's Audio Lab products, introducing the PowerBases in place of the maple platforms and the Grungebuster dots yielded subtle improvement, to a degree which surprised me. And the electrical isolation (though not fully broken in yet it seems) also yields benefits in "black background" and micro-dynamics. Glad I got them, they dress the components up very nicely as well.
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« Last Edit: 03/16/13 at 15:51:01 by Lon »  

Decware:ERR,HR-1,ZP3,CSP2+,Torii Mk III,PS Audio PWT+PWD MkII,PowerBases,PPP,AC-12 pcs, Denon DBP-A100, Denon DCD-A100,Rega RP3 +TTPSU,white belt+Exact2, VooDoo Cable:Evo,Ultra Linear, Iso-PodMapleshade:Double Heiix Plus.Samsonv2+v3 +4" platforms,Herbie's Iso-Cup
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