Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

vacuum tube amp recommendation ≤ $600

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • vacuum tube amp recommendation ≤ $600

    I'm looking for suggestions to purchase a 2-ch vacuum tube amp for an auxiliary 2-ch system, not my main system. I fully realize that I will likely have to purchase from overseas, which is fine, so long as I'm getting a good value.

    Requirements:
    • 4 ohm capable
    • 120V input power (I can rig up 240V if need be, that's not a problem, but 120V is obviously easier)
    • lots of power, the more the better, so I'm guessing I need to only consider ultra-linear as opposed to triode-mode(?). I'm not stuck on one or other, as I've seen some "Class A Push-pull" that also produce lots of power. (perhaps they are one and the same, I don't know about vacuum tube amp details).
    • My current system trips 20A breakers using multiple Peavey CS800X's, so the above bullet point is absolutely no BS. I need Loud, with strong bass reproduction (I don't listen to "easy to reproduce" music).
    • No kits. I want to outright purchase a working amp to hook up and use immediately.

    I have done some research, but I'd like to hear suggestions. If I omitted any info, it is not on purpose; please ask away what I have not properly disclosed.

  • #2
    You probably already know this, but you might find an upgraded Dynaco ST-70 for that price if you hit the right deal. But that's only 35 w/ch. Beyond that, more watts with good low end means big transformers, both in the power supply and the outputs, and that means $$$.
    Co-conspirator in the development of the "CR Gnarly Fidelity Reduction Unit" - Registered Trademark, Patent Pending.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thank you for the suggestion. I forgot one more important requirement:
      • I want to purchase brand new. I don't want someone else's project amp or anything of the like. I don't want to be looking for months without end for some unicorn amp that might never show up. Life is too short.
      • Price limit is not a hard limit. But somewhere in the vicinity would be nice. I'm trying to show restraint, because I have been known to go overboard on way too many things, lol.

      Comment


      • #4
        Not trying to be mean here, but if you absolutely must have brand new, you're price range probably needs to double at a minimum, and that's with limited power output. For example, a brand new design based on the Dynaco ST-70 is right at $1200 with tubes, if you look for TriodeElectronics.

        Tube amps are extremely expensive, mostly because of the iron (the transformers) required. But then, the tubes aren't cheap either. Unfortunately, this is not something you can really skimp on. With tube amps, the iron and the tubes make significant changes to the sound and it really is true that you get what you pay for here.

        There's a pure-tube amp for sale at a discount electronics retailer (mono price) that is only $360 and appears to be based on the basic design of the ST-70, but I cannot speak for it as I've never heard it.

        If you want tubes, the price of entry is steep.
        DARPA Jr - 2015 InDIYana Winner - RS180-8 + RS100P-8 + ND25FA
        The Aria's - RS150-4 (or RS150-8) + XT25SC90
        The Mariposa's - TEBM65C20F-8 + ND16FA
        The Canzonetta's - RS100P-8 and ND16FA
        AudioSource AMP-100 Mods OR Pyle PAMP1000 Mods

        Comment


        • #5
          - affordable
          - loads of power
          - tubes

          Pick any 2

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by invaderzim View Post
            - affordable
            - loads of power
            - tubes

            Pick any 2
            When I say I want power, for a tube amp it seems that 50 wpc is already a lot of power compared to a solid state of the same rated wattage. I"ve seen some around this power range from China. I know I'm not going to get 100wpc or anywhere near what I have in solid-state power. So i'm just curious if you all have seen anything reputable that sounds decent in this range.

            Comment


            • #7
              Were it me, I'd build one of the designs offered by the guys at DIY Audio. Here's an example: https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/tube...mp-design.html

              But there are plenty to choose from. I think you'll get your maximum return per dollar that way.
              Francis

              Comment


              • #8
                This is one of a few saved links to Chinese manufactured tube amps. Many of them come in under $1k and are sweet looking, but as previously mentioned, 'cheap' and 'tube amp' do not necessarily make a good pairing. You can find some great and/or scathing reviews of 'cheap' tube amps, some of these amps can be improved upon with a little diy and some are downright dangerous as delivered. Cannot link so Google china-hifi-audiodotcom
                I'd recommend doing a lot of research before purchase.
                Just to clarify, not all tube amps coming from China are, for lack of a better term, cheap. You will see some getting rave reviews in the mags.
                http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...khanspires-but
                http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...pico-neo-build
                http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...ensation-build

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by fpitas View Post
                  Were it me, I'd build one of the designs offered by the guys at DIY Audio. Here's an example: https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/tube...mp-design.html

                  But there are plenty to choose from. I think you'll get your maximum return per dollar that way.
                  I would love to, really. I just don't have the time with all the other unfinished projects I have going on.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Kornbread View Post
                    This is one of a few saved links to Chinese manufactured tube amps. Many of them come in under $1k and are sweet looking, but as previously mentioned, 'cheap' and 'tube amp' do not necessarily make a good pairing. You can find some great and/or scathing reviews of 'cheap' tube amps, some of these amps can be improved upon with a little diy and some are downright dangerous as delivered. Cannot link so Google china-hifi-audiodotcom
                    I'd recommend doing a lot of research before purchase.
                    Just to clarify, not all tube amps coming from China are, for lack of a better term, cheap. You will see some getting rave reviews in the mags.
                    I had seen that site, which is what enticed me. It's just difficult for me to tell which is better than which due to tube configuration. The part that I did piece together is that KT 150 > KT120 > KT88 > EL34 when it comes to output power (as far as most of those amps on that site are concerned, within the same price range)

                    The speakers, for the time being, are Legacy Audio Studio HD's, which are about 92 dB@2.83V, so they're pretty easy to drive, but I do crank up the bass, so that uses up a lot of power.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by guitar maestro View Post

                      I would love to, really. I just don't have the time with all the other unfinished projects I have going on.
                      Well be careful of those Chinese kits or amps. Too often they're not even worth the money you pay, and some are just flat dangerous.
                      Francis

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It's going to take time to find a cheap gem so check out the diy audio site posted earlier. You will find some of those tube amps make their way into the hands of a diy'r and respond to mods quite well, others, er, probably find the rubbish bin or their carcass gets recycled for a proper thermionic valve amplifier.
                        http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...khanspires-but
                        http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...pico-neo-build
                        http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...ensation-build

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Kornbread View Post
                          It's going to take time to find a cheap gem so check out the diy audio site posted earlier. You will find some of those tube amps make their way into the hands of a diy'r and respond to mods quite well, others, er, probably find the rubbish bin or their carcass gets recycled for a proper thermionic valve amplifier.
                          Thanks, but that's exactly what I wanted to avoid, lol. Don't have the time nor inclination to scour hundreds if not thousands of threads to see who has something for sale.


                          So are these total and utter crap? I figure that much wattage can easily power my speakers to very loud levels.

                          Music Angel KT88 Class A Vacuum tube HiFI Integrated Amplifier
                          • Model: 31tjy33n
                          • $505.99
                          • Output tube: KT88X4
                          • Input/Driver tube: 12AT7 x2,12AU7 x2
                          • Output power: 65W x2 (utlra-linear mode) 30W x2 (triode mode) (Class A)
                          • SNR: 95dB
                          • Input: 3 group
                          • Frequency response: 7Hz-70Hz (- 3Db)
                          • Dimensions: 465W x 280D x 175H mm
                          • Gross Weight: 24kg (double boxes)
                          • Power: 110V(±10%)/220V(±10%)
                          • Packing Include: Full Set Tubes, Standard 1.5m Power Cord and amp
                          REISONG Boyuu MT-88 MKII KT88*4 tube Amp Push-pull Hi-Fi Audio Amplifier Upgrade
                          • Model: e9u4hn43
                          • $554.99
                          • Vacuum tube: 12AT7*2 (voltage amplification)
                          • 12AU7*1 (current drive)
                          • KT88*4 (power output)
                          • Output Power: 35W × 2 (triode) , 60W × 2 (superlinear)
                          • Frequency response: 25Hz - 45KHz
                          • Input Impedance: 4 ohms, 8 ohms
                          • SNR: 89dB
                          • Input Sensitivity: 800mV
                          • Total harmonic distortion: ≤ 1% (1kHz)
                          • Input Sensitivity: 800mV
                          • Input Impedance: 100KΩ
                          • Volume: Width 410 × 370 × depth high 190MM
                          • Packing Volume: width 560 × 480 × depth high 340MM
                          • Weight: 20.5Kg
                          • Package weight: 24Kg
                          • Power Supply Voltage: AC 100V - 240V / 50Hz-60Hz



                          Music Angel XD500MKIII EL34 Vacuum Tube Hi-end Tube Integrated Amplifier
                          • Model: cs0wicfa
                          • $420.99
                          • Specifications:
                          • Output tube: EL34 X 4
                          • Input/Driver tube: 6N9P 6E2 6N1
                          • Output power: 50W x 2 (utlra-linear mode) 20W x 2 (triode mode) (Class A)
                          • SNR: 95dB
                          • Frequency response: 7Hz-70Hz (±3Db)
                          • Input: 3 group
                          • Dimensions: 465W x 280D x 175H mm
                          • Weight: 22kg
                          • Power: 110/220V
                          • Packing Include: Full Set Tubes and Standard 1.5m Power Cord

                          Music Angel XD950MKIII XDSE M9 EL34 x8 Tube integrated amplifier
                          • Model: 948nmx79
                          • $668.99
                          • Specifications:
                          • Input Power : 110/220V
                          • Input/Driver Tube :6N1 X 5
                          • Output Tube : EL34 X 8
                          • Output power : 70W x 2 (utlra-linear mode) 40W x 2 (triode mode) (Class A)
                          • Signal/Noise Ratio:95dB
                          • Frequency response:7Hz-70Hz (±3Db)
                          • Ohms: 4 ohms and 8 ohms
                          • Input Jack: 3 groups
                          • Size Dimension : Width 465mm x Height 175mm x Depth 280mm
                          • Colour : Silver Body & Black Power Supply
                          • Weight : 26kg
                          • Packing Includes:All Tubes & 1.5m Power Cord

                          YAQIN MC-100B KT88 Class A Tube Integrated Amplifier HiFi Preamplifier
                          • Model: wqadalhi
                          • $765.99
                          • Tubes: KT88-98 × 4 (Output Tubes)
                          • 6N8P × 4 (Drivers and Cathode followers)
                          • 12AX7B × 2 (Voltage amplifiers)
                          • Maximum Output:
                          • 30W per channel (8Ω and Triode Mode), 60W per channel (8Ω and Ultra linear Mode)
                          • Output Jacks: Two channels with two groups gold plated jacks
                          • Output Impedance: 4Ω and 8Ω
                          • Input Jacks: Gold plated isolated RCA jacks, 4 groups (CD, DVD, Tape, and Tuner) on rear, and 1 group on front as the input of post-stage mode
                          • Input Sensitivity:
                          • 0.25V in integrated mode (CD, DVD, and Tuner)
                          • 0.6V in pure post-stage mode (Front input connectors)
                          • Distortion of Harmonic Wave: ≤1.5%
                          • Frequency Response: 5Hz ~ 80KHz (-2dB
                          • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: 90dB (A weight)
                          • Supply Voltage: AC 115V, 60Hz
                          • Power Consumption: 250W
                          • Net Weight: 23kg
                          • Shipping Weight: 30kg
                          • Shipping Dimension: 60cm x 52cm x 36cm









                          Comment


                          • #14
                            The Reisong gets pretty great reviews for what it is (ie. affordable chinese tube amp). Maybe you can provide a bit more background on your goals? Have you tried tubes before or is this to try out the "tube sound" for the first time? Maybe given your power requirements you may want to consider a hybrid amp (like monoprice) or just a tube preamp to a solid state?
                            Carbon13

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Carbon13 View Post
                              The Reisong gets pretty great reviews for what it is (ie. affordable chinese tube amp). Maybe you can provide a bit more background on your goals? Have you tried tubes before or is this to try out the "tube sound" for the first time? Maybe given your power requirements you may want to consider a hybrid amp (like monoprice) or just a tube preamp to a solid state?
                              Goal? Just good music reproduction. But I do look at power, relatively speaking, because I listen to metal. Not just Metallica, Anthrax, and the like, but a lot of death and grindcore metal, which puts a lot of strain on bass reproduction as it is very "constant" so it does make an amp draw/use a lot of power compared to other "less demanding" types of music. Stuff like Napalm Death, Morbid Angel, Wormrot, Magrudergrind, Carass, Sepultura, etc. It's not all I listen to, but a good chunk of it.

                              The only "tube" things I own are two Behringer Ultragain 2200 pre-amp's, and cheap chinese Douk Audio headphone/pre-amp. So I've already tried the 'tube preamp to solid state' route, and therefore not interested in hybrid amps. I'm looking for a full tube power amp as a 1st time thing.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X