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04/24/19 at 22:58:08 


       



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25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions! (Read 14088 times)
Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #100 - 03/20/19 at 18:17:58
 
Amp #48 arrived safely 7 days ago,very well packed,someone once mentioned the mars rover?I knew someone was moving in by the luggage that arrived a week before.The wood is spectacular!I swear i looked into the final bag,stuck my nose in and time travelled back 32 years when i picked up my lp-12..this particular wood is fluted like my lp-12,and all these little marks like dimples, i'm looking at them together now,spectacular cabinet work!that's ZEN!
So after 3 days of letting it all get settled,i go up to the speaker room and pick up one of mr shaws little pp's,one under each arm,have owned just about every version of ls35a,Kan,1,2….this amp is what these speakers crave,the imaging is now world class period.I'm loading up a room 10x12 and liquid rover is looking over at the 275mk6 and starting to wink. Grin

Yup,this is liquid…stunning sound….now for some reference dulcets.

Thank you all at Decware…whoever got the wtf,..haha.
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Lon
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #101 - 03/20/19 at 19:51:00
 
Congrats Tubecan! Slowly but surely the 25th Anniversary Experience is sweeping the world! Glad you are getting to enjoy the amp, they offer a tremendous audio lift.
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HR-1,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV+MK III;Rega P3 w/modPS Audio:DMP+DSD,P10,NPC,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs; Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3,double helix Plus spark cbl;Oppo UDP205;VooDoo:Cremona+Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner; headphones: PM1,HD800S,LCD-
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Palomino
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #102 - 03/20/19 at 20:09:53
 
Congrats

If you like the amp now, you will like it a lot more in a month or so.
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #103 - 03/21/19 at 00:03:15
 
I'm listening now with the speakers as headphones…about 2 feet away and the sound is so clear,the resolution is off the map,bottom so tight that i'm thinking this is correct..this amp is crazy.
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #104 - 03/21/19 at 13:54:37
 
I'm listening to piano..piano!..when have i ever listened to piano?!!!
i had no idea pianos are this big,the keyboard is the size of the room…when your heads bouncing to "piano" you know there's something good going on…now the suns coming up and i get to stare at the different shades of this wood cabinetry,around 1pm this amp turns red and has the most incredible grain….83db speakers and i could live with this forever,watts shmatts…this amp gets loud with total control of these plastic overweight drivers.
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Acetone
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #105 - 03/21/19 at 15:51:24
 
Tubecan,  I've had my UFO25 for nearly 7 months now (wow, time has flown). I can tell you that you'd better strap in because it gets better/bigger/badder as the amp seasons. Roll in some good NOS tubes, (If you rec'd amp with Steve's tubes you'll be fine), and enjoy the journey!
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SE84-CKC & UFO25, ZP3, Zstage, ZRock2, ZSB, DM947Monoliths, VPI-Traveler-2M black. Philips CDR880. Schiit BIMBY, Audio Envy/RAC-PC's/IC's, Mapleshade Dbl Helix+Spk wire & jumpers, Blue Circle PLC FX2X0e. Herbies tube damps, Tenderfoots, GIK, PI Audio, DIY panel
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #106 - 03/25/19 at 19:51:03
 
I have the stock tubes,the japanese matsusonic have extended highs,could live alone with them,sound good,actually they pulled off the sitting in a piano ducking hammers trick very convincingly..the russia,russia,russian one has great  bass,…i picked up 2 amperex for 40 and seems the first 2-3 hours they sound dull,then the midrange opens up and that's that.The OD3 seems to really change the sound with swapping out..the raytheon OD3A supplied sounds lively-more musical?..probably imagining.You can really hear the difference with speaker cable changes..huge,was always on the fence about that…fresh scrapings when swapping?.
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will
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #107 - 03/26/19 at 18:51:03
 
Quote:
The OD3 seems to really change the sound with swapping out..the raytheon OD3A supplied sounds lively-more musical?..probably imagining.You can really hear the difference with speaker cable changes..huge,was always on the fence about that…fresh scrapings when swapping?.


Hey Tubecan,

Sounds like your amp is really getting fun!

It may well be that the latter part of your comment, about hearing cables so well, answers the former. I think distinctly hearing things you thought were not necessarily for real before indicates the new playground you are in. Steve's amps are just quite revealingly and liquid by design, and especially if tuned to optimize those qualities. Transparency and resolution really good, with nice tubes, cables, other components and all, the musical experience can feel pretty real in my experience.

With my Toriis, also using VR tubes as power filters to the tubes, in this setup, I have always been able to hear differences in VRs of the same voltage rating, and more so going from, say an OA3 to an OB3, or OB3 to OC3. Changing the little VRs, it is totally noticeable here too.

When I think of the power that feeds the signal path parts and tubes being cleaner, more refined, it is not hard to imagine how that power refinement will effect the parts that make up the signal path and sound. Using VRs this way is great design, but also another indicator of how important the quality of power is, before the amp, and inside the amp...better in, better performance, and better sound out.

I have been exploring with my amp and pre power supplies, connectors, wires, resistors, caps and all for a few years, often experimenting daily, or several times in a day, to optimize whatever I am working on. The last month or so, I can get "glimpses," but can't really hear anything that seems off about the sound, just amazed at the beauty. Loads of these changes were all about power, not technically in the signal path. And changing a power bypass cap value, type, or combination...or a resistor, or wire, by enhancing the quality and character of the power going to the tubes, it was clear that power tuning can seriously tune the sound! I have been listening really carefully for a long time, but to me these power changes are quite obvious...as obvious in most cases as signal path part changes. This is a big part of why the project took so long...many, many experiments to reach deeper completeness and synergy and I have yet to find a part anywhere in the amp I can't hear when changed.

Long story, short, I suspect you were not imagining the sound change with that VR roll! Everything in these amps makes a difference in a revealing system/room, and from what I gather, especially with your new 25th Zen!
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #108 - 03/27/19 at 13:44:48
 
Sitting in a piano ducking hammers..actually there was nothing pulled off,this is the first time i'v experienced this,and with an 83 db speaker..40 years in the same room and i get stink eyed for playing too loud!This amplifier is alive!,at low volume the sound after a couple of minutes get's louder,so you turn it down a notch and after a few more minutes again you have turn her down,feels like there's a connection straight to the brain,don't need ears!..i found a bagful of VR' and rectifiers..now to sell off some 12ax telees and whatever,i'm looking at you mk6-going to hit the 6-7dj8' HARD!
Linn speaker cable and now 100% i can hear the difference when they're sending the music backwards,before 70%.have to turn down the volume when i type cuz i can't concentrate typing my thoughts.I say just send everyone one of these and we're done.I plugged in an old koss radio and the sound is amazing.
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Steve Deckert
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #109 - 03/28/19 at 05:40:28
 

Tubcan, Now you're making my face hurt from smiling so big... because you capture the amazement I felt when I described the sound of the original amplifier in my long-winded posts... my biggest concern while writing about it was of course loosing credibility because it seems too unbelievable therefor it must be marketing bullshit. Of course we all know that is not the case with the first 50 amps out the door and not a single return!  Still, we need to be reminded, as you have done, constantly until we all own one.

BTW,  I believe it IS alive.

And BTW, at 2 feet away (If that's what I read) your speakers are plenty efficient from a power standpoint and being familiar with them is an excellent way to evaluate this amp since you have a familiar reference point.

I listened to some LP's last night from Sheffield Labs, specifically the first act of Romeo and Juliet, and about 1/3 through it, I was gobsmacked at the dynamics and feeling of realness and space -- it was so real I just about shit my pants. Again, from a 2 watt amplifier and full scale orchestra unleashed and it somehow didn't clip on the DNA2 94dB speakers. I've never heard anything better than that and interestingly I have a "I've never heard anything better than that" story from yesterday too, and the day before, and every day for the past year or more. It is an amplifier that you never get used to, and the longer you live with it the more you realize it is alive and it's female and... a little bit dangerous since you spend well over double the listening time you planed on.

Anyway, thanks for getting me wound up so I can get you wound up! And please keep us posted as things progress. It's easy to get one and think "well I can't write anything that hasn't been written already so I just won't stay much."  Believe it or not, readers are looking for confirmation, and repeatability, so if your experience sounds similar to everyone else, by all means post it. A hundred posts that all say the exact same things are to the reader like a petition to the greatness of the amplifier.  The world is full of great amplifiers, so the only way anyone will be able to share your experience and join this family is by getting pushed over the edge by your posts, impressions, reviews, and mainly just the realtime reports when you hear things you never heard before!  

Posting the realtime updates lets us experience the amp vicariously which is particularly nice when you don't actually own on yet.

Happy listening!

Steve
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #110 - 03/29/19 at 02:07:47
 
Hello Steve Deckert..honestly 2 feet away almost facing each other,cept my big head in the way,the greatest headphones ever,more beefier than kan 2 actives with 250's,also no need for more power when their a foot from the front wall in standard setup..seems this amp stopped blinking once in awhile and now there's more than enough power,once in awhile i'll be listening and have this feeling like it's all midrange and high frequencies directly into my brain,then a bass note hits and just floors me.50 amps and not a single return?If this one stopped working you wouldn't get it back.i'd just keep staring at it like i do.
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #111 - 04/04/19 at 13:40:17
 
Musical!!,i'm thinking i need another matsushita or two, and a dozen of them sv83' and call it a stupid no brainer retirement amp…majestic.hooked up some smmg and they've never sounded like this…i'm giving this amp a hard time and it just smirks.Funny when you realize most of the time you've been playing amps around a watt and the other 100+ watts are just loitering around.these are 81 db speakers and i'm sitting here wondering wtf.
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #112 - 04/08/19 at 20:16:43
 
Tchaikovsky with 88 db reference dulcets..a canadian version of 3/5a' and i don't need anymore watts,i'm thinking that the 2? this amp has is too much! Grin The 6n5p tube seems like it wants to show off but is stuck,maybe another 50 hours?..This amp is amazing.
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Acetone
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #113 - 04/10/19 at 02:15:51
 
Tubecan ....I agree. A strong +1 on all your comments. Now, if you'll excuse me, it's back to my listening chair!
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SE84-CKC & UFO25, ZP3, Zstage, ZRock2, ZSB, DM947Monoliths, VPI-Traveler-2M black. Philips CDR880. Schiit BIMBY, Audio Envy/RAC-PC's/IC's, Mapleshade Dbl Helix+Spk wire & jumpers, Blue Circle PLC FX2X0e. Herbies tube damps, Tenderfoots, GIK, PI Audio, DIY panel
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Palomino
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #114 - 04/10/19 at 21:04:53
 
Yes Tube, just wait.  It gets better.  I think I am now approaching 300 hours and its just amazing each time I listen.  Huge.  Pinpoint soundstage.  Great detail.  Musical.
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alper_yilmaz
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #115 - 04/10/19 at 21:31:13
 
I am also around my 300th hour or so, if not more driving 88.5dB speakers.  It is just getting better and better.  Interestingly, the amp has given me the impression that its volume has increased over the course of the last month or so.  Also, there is so much detail that you do not want to crank it up anyway...
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Palomino
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #116 - 04/10/19 at 21:57:01
 
I definitely have the volume lower.
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MrDerrick
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #117 - 04/13/19 at 21:55:35
 
I'm at about 150 hours and its hard to believe that this amp will become even more musical!

I thought that I had a dead quiet system before inserting the 25th, I was wrong.

The 25th is so freaking quiet that it revealed that I still had several layers of noise to eliminate that I never new existed.

This amp pushed me to explore installation schemes that I would have never previously needed to consider and the pay off is an exponentially greater listening experience.

The end result is once again a dead quiet system with vastly greater dynamics and musicality.

I am in the Zen Zone!

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Lon
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #118 - 04/14/19 at 00:25:44
 
So glad you have it and are enjoying it. I love my Monoblocks. . . the mods are more than the real deal, they transform the sound. It keeps getting better too, you have that to look forward to. The amp will teach you how to tailor your system to it.

I just realized I've had my modded Monoblocks for a year now! Whoa!
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Steve Deckert
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #119 - 04/14/19 at 01:55:50
 
Holy crap that year went fast!!!
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Lon
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #120 - 04/14/19 at 02:12:05
 
Yes, and lots of joy!
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HR-1,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV+MK III;Rega P3 w/modPS Audio:DMP+DSD,P10,NPC,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs; Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3,double helix Plus spark cbl;Oppo UDP205;VooDoo:Cremona+Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner; headphones: PM1,HD800S,LCD-
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Tubecan
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Re: 25th Anniversary Zen Triode Amplifier Impressions!
Reply #121 - 04/15/19 at 17:00:25
 
The last 5 days felt like a year..i bricked my airport express and lost my internet connection and can't figure this out so i gave up...probably something updated automatically and poof.Yup this amp is so quiet that i would have to climb into the speaker to hear any hissing..not one cell phone,taxi conversation picked up..seems dead! till the music starts…awesome amp.I'm thinking i have about 500 hours+,14 hours per day,learned that lesson of leaving amps on from my british fidelity a1 35 years back,i was the only that could keep that toaster going for 6 months at a time.
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