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To TOR IV or to ZEN 25? (Read 584 times)
Chris P
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To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
12/27/18 at 20:58:44
 
Hello all-
New to Decware, and the tube world for the most.  I've decided to build a new DECWARE system from scratch.  I've ordered a TORII MKIV (no mods) which has not made the list yet.  But I am a victim of the paradox of choice! Assuming that I have a window to switch units I put the question out to the community...which one makes most sense?  Assumptions are that I will go listen to and perhaps purchase Decware Speakers in person well before my unit ships and they will be used in a large 17x20 (no sound treatment) less than desirable room with a typical seating area for listening for now. I listen to all types of music. Both units seem to make sense to me from what I am reading with the TOR perhaps being more versatile with speaker selection and room size.  Am I overlooking anything?  Thanks for the help!
Chris
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Lon
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #1 - 12/27/18 at 21:06:50
 
Chris,

Welcome!

My best advice: work backwards from the speakers you intend to use. If you intend to get high efficiency speakers, say the Decware DNA or DNA2, I would in your shoes seriously consider the Zen 25th Amplifier. These amps are in a class of their own, there is nothing else really like them. There's a magic to their presentation that has yet to be rivaled.

Other less efficient speakers will need more power and the Torii Mk IV would be a great choice.

Do you have speakers on hand to use with the amp you choose? Otherwise, you may have a long wait for speakers. There may be one or two types on hand at Decware but most models seem to have a considerable lead time for a build.

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HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV+MK III;PS Audio:DMP+DSD,P10,NPC, PowerBases,Statement spkr cb, AC-12 power cds;Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3;Oppo UDP-205;VooDoo: Cremona+Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner;headphones: Oppo PM-1,Sennheisern 800S
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Archie
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #2 - 12/27/18 at 21:18:46
 
Having just had my line of Decware components anniversary modified, I'd highly recommend getting the modifications, if available and if you decide on the ToriIV.  Also, having an untreated room, I sure do love my HR1s.  However, they may not be efficient enough for the Zen.
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Technics 1200G TT w/ Ortofon Jubilee MC cart
ZMC1
ZP3 (25th A Mods)
ZR2 (25th A Mods)
CSP3 (25th A mods)
ZMA (25th A mods)
HR1s
Silver Cabling
Isolation platforms under everything.
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Lon
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"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 15132
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #3 - 12/27/18 at 21:22:21
 
I'm using a ZTPRE and a pair of the Anniversary Monoblocks with the HR-1. If your room isn't TOO large the 25th Anniversary Zen may handle the HR-1s, but it is a bit risky.
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HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV+MK III;PS Audio:DMP+DSD,P10,NPC, PowerBases,Statement spkr cb, AC-12 power cds;Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3;Oppo UDP-205;VooDoo: Cremona+Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner;headphones: Oppo PM-1,Sennheisern 800S
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ScottNC
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Posts: 154
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #4 - 12/27/18 at 23:52:29
 
Hi Chris and Welcome,

 You'll find a whole wealth of good advice and knowledge here, it's quite a community. I am by no means as experienced or knowledgable as your prior responses or the ones you will have in the future. I have a Torii MKIV in a large treated room with a myriad of open rooms to that space. I have gotten a tremendous amount of help and guidance here and from Steve (the guy behind all this great gear). I also have a pair of DNA2's. I'm waiting on a ZROCK2 (w/25th mods) and also have a ZTPRE and ZLC in the Q. My thoughts would tend towards a MKIV simply because if you decide in the future to add treatment to your room and are unsure as to your speaker selection you may want the additional power available. I also add... I don't have any experience with anything but my MKIV so this is just something for you to ponder. I plan to send mine in for the complete anniversary mods after I get a chance to hear it with the ZROCK2 and while I want for my ZTPRE to get built. I can tell you one thing and that is you are going to enjoy the journey immensely and you'll be glad you choose this path to go down.
 Good luck with your system and I'd encourage you to read into Steve's papers and also prior postings here, the info is endless... Enjoy!
 And as Lon reminded me just easier today..."Good things come to those who wait" Smiley

Best,
Scott
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TORII MKIV
ZBIT
ZROCK2-25th
ZTPRE(inQ)
ZLC (inQ)
DNA2's
MyTek Brooklyn DAC+
Sonore ultraRendu-LinearPS
SGC sonicTransport APi7
Woo WA6
Sennheiser HD660s
Full Room Treatments
Dedicated 10g Line Feed
DHC-1’s,DSR’s,ZENST,TriodeWireLabs
DIY Iso
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Chris P
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Posts: 7
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #5 - 12/28/18 at 10:59:08
 
Thank you all for your kind words and advice.  Yes, Steve has provided endless great information on the site.  As soon as I landed on the site I knew I was in the right place.  I did reach out to Steve inquiring about a amp fit for my current 98db Polk monitors which I would've liked to use and he suggested the ZMA, and also added
"At some point you have to weight the cost of the speaker against the cost of the amplifier.  We have a bookshelf speaker that is 94dB with a smooth laid back sound like the Polks, and it would require only a few watts.  Many people pair them with our SE84UFO with great results"

Good advice indeed, and every paper on the logic behind using "high efficiency" speakers makes sense to me.  But knowing myself and being in pursuit of the right sounding match, I opted for the extra power with the TORII MKIV.  Also, It didn't seem to me that the Anniversary mods for the TOR would make that much of a difference as I believe they were minimal in comparison to other models.  I'll take some input on that?  Beyond that I am planning on getting out to see Steve in January hopefully to demo some speakers with a TOR.  Does anyone know what build/wait times are for the speakers?  I don't want to bother Steve with too many questions as I am certain that  they are bogged down with builds since the Black Friday sale.  Anyhow, always appreciate and accept input and advice from others!  Have a great Friday....and a Happy and Healthy New Year!!!
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Rivieraranch
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #6 - 12/28/18 at 14:29:16
 
Aren't those Polks 89db? You wrote 98.
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SE84UFO MONO PAIR; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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ScottNC
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Posts: 154
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #7 - 12/28/18 at 14:50:45
 
Chris,

 Give Bob Ziegler a call, he builds the speakers and is another great source. He is in North Carolina, 828-291-3439. (Think DNA2'S! Wink)

Best,
Scott
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TORII MKIV
ZBIT
ZROCK2-25th
ZTPRE(inQ)
ZLC (inQ)
DNA2's
MyTek Brooklyn DAC+
Sonore ultraRendu-LinearPS
SGC sonicTransport APi7
Woo WA6
Sennheiser HD660s
Full Room Treatments
Dedicated 10g Line Feed
DHC-1’s,DSR’s,ZENST,TriodeWireLabs
DIY Iso
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Chris P
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Posts: 7
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #8 - 12/28/18 at 15:30:58
 
Sorry!  
2.83V Sensitivity 88db @ 8ohms
Model is LSiM703
Pulled from HT setup.  I also have a pair of B&W 6 series, and a pair of KEF bookshelves sitting in a closet.  Non of which fall into the sensitive/high efficiency category.  I have issues/trouble parting with equipment...
On the Polks, I’ve always had a pair in the mix over the years either in the car or at home.  They can easily be parked moving forward.  
I will reach out to Bob Z. and inquire about build times etc.
Regards,
Chris P
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Geno
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #9 - 01/04/19 at 23:46:19
 
Just my 2 cents - if you want to save a whole lotta money, talk to Randy at Caintuck Audio. I have Betsy Baffles and two 12” open Baffle woofers with an SE84UFO and a 100W plate amp for the woofers. I just have to shake my head at how great it sounds. Puts a smile on my face every time. Best sound I’ve had in my listening room in 35 years in this hobby.
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SE84UFO
Decware ZDSD DAC
Cambridge Audio CXC
Technics PL 1210MK5 Goldring1042
ZP3
Decware ZLC (in q)
TEAC A 3300SR R2R
Caintuck Betsy Baffles
(2) 12” Bass Baffles
Mapleshade Double Helix+ speaker cable
Maplesh and Decware interconn
ZU Power cables
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Chris P
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Posts: 7
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #10 - 01/05/19 at 12:49:17
 
Sounds like my SS Sedan.  Every time I get into that thing and step on the gas it puts a BIG smile on my face.  It's going to be hard to part with it.  Back to the topic at hand...appreciate the input!  Seeing as it is not a dedicated sound room and more a living room I don't think the 12" subs are going to fly without it resulting in a marital divorce.  Which would get me my dedicated and treated sound room...Hmm!  So with that being the case I am resigned to finding a pair of Bookshelf Speakers or a reasonably sized tower such as the DNA's.  
In the time since my initial post I have done a lot of research and I decided to build a system around the TOR MKIV.  In fact I ordered one.  I don't think that I'll have any regrets.  I am at the time whereby I just want to sit and listen...and not pursue.
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ScottNC
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #11 - 01/05/19 at 23:16:34
 
Chris,

 Congrats on your recent order, if you are anywhere near as happy with your MKIV as I am with mine (it's in for  Anniversary Mods) you will have no regrets. I realize even more now just how good that amp is now that it's gone. I have my Sony HAP1s in it's place so I tunes, no more, no less.
 Happy listening.

Best,
Scott
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TORII MKIV
ZBIT
ZROCK2-25th
ZTPRE(inQ)
ZLC (inQ)
DNA2's
MyTek Brooklyn DAC+
Sonore ultraRendu-LinearPS
SGC sonicTransport APi7
Woo WA6
Sennheiser HD660s
Full Room Treatments
Dedicated 10g Line Feed
DHC-1’s,DSR’s,ZENST,TriodeWireLabs
DIY Iso
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Chris P
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Posts: 7
Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #12 - 01/06/19 at 00:08:27
 
Thanks Scott.  Just a waiting game now.  I am also going to try and get out to see Steve and listen to some speakers. I think I mentioned that in an email.  As for the Betsy Baffles Geno...I watched Steve's demo video and yes, I am baffled!  Do either of you or someone you know have any experience with these Bluesound Streamers?  The Vault 2i looks interesting to me:  https://www.bluesound.com/products/vault-2i/
Am I missing anything in the specs?  Still need a DAC?
Right now I'm using an Oppo UDP-203 with an external HDD attached.
Enjoy the rest of the weekend.
Chris
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will
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Re: To TOR IV or to ZEN 25?
Reply #13 - 01/09/19 at 01:56:44
 
Hey Chris,

I do not have Steve's mods in my MKIV, but have modified it myself over a couple years, redoing and bypassing the power supply caps, and changing lots of other parts. Different mods, Steve's will sound different, and I can't personally comment on his, not having heard them. But even doing minimal bypassing on my power supply as I got started on this project resulted in revelatory improvement. Not sure what all Steve is doing, but I would imagine you would get important listening pleasure refinements from his modifications.

So my thought? If you after not looking more and just listening, you could get great results from your stock MKIV, but I would recommend seriously considering the mods before your amp gets to the build table....might be worth asking Steve what he hears with the MKIV mods and see if it appeals?

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PSA P5/modified Brickwall/Shunyata Defender+more; RevolutionMacMini/Audirvana>modified Gustard x20pro DAC; DIY + Pi Audio PCs; DIY ICs, USB, speaker cables; Decware-Jupiter CSP3, Torii MKIV, HR1-all modified; DIY Zbit; feet-Madscientist, Archie's, isocups, DIY
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