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High Rollers
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Everything posted by mulveling

  1. Happy birthday Tom, you're the OG h-fi high-roller!! You and Purk combined forces to get me incurably hooked to headphones, 2ch, and vinyl. Enjoy your day! I think you would also really enjoy the Stax 009, btw.
  2. My newer pair (Feb 2015) was in fact slightly brighter compared to Purk's older pair (isn't yours 3 years now?). But I'm confident it's down to pad conditioning as there was quite a difference in firmness there. I'd be ecstatically happy with either pair. There is no newer more mellow version. They're all basically the same and sound great. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  3. I have one of Tony's other KGST -- it runs quite cool and is about as trustworthy and robust as tube gear gets. But maybe don't turn it on/off 10 times a day because tubes -- but then if you're doing that I'd suggest you re-evaluate your life choices
  4. I'm going to create a dup account so you can welcome me.
  5. Can confirm everything Purk's said. The KGST has slightly sweeter mids, but the 450V/500V KGSShv implementations I've heard won't be far off that, and they've also got a wider soundstage, more solid bass, and play cleaner louder (I do listen loud at times). Though if your KGST is 400V (mine is 350V), then it may eat into those advantages considerably (though I have no way to confirm myself yet)? That's probably a really nice amp you've got yourself there.
  6. I can tell that the guy on the computer is a huge dork, and has a very difficult time with women.
  7. Well that's crappy. I'd immediately order a new pair on Price Japan and work out a deal with Spritzer that will make you both happy. I'd also consider telling ACCUTECH that PJ will be meeting my purchasing needs from now on (well probably not, but still I'd be pissed) -- after you get your old pair back for $100. Personally I wouldn't bother haggling with them, though perhaps it could bear fruit. Hope you find satisfaction soon; it's been a long time coming for you.
  8. Thanks, interesting. Is it at all possible that the source (NAD M51 via XLR) could be pushing the extra DC into one channel at these times -- I could try to swap input channels (I realize many of my questions, probably this one, are going to be stupid)? If it still sounds like trimpot replacement time to you guys, I'll proceed with that. The problematic board uses Bourns 3299 (Costa Rica) which are slightly bigger than the L board's 3296 (Taiwan).
  9. So the offset for both R and L kept creeping up and up and up as the amp warmed up for over 2 hours -- but otherwise it seems relatively stable and symmetric between the R and L. I adjusted them for full warmup conditions, then re-tweaked the balances and let them settle. This is a Prod Rev 0.2 board, so no offset servo. What's not so stable and symmetric is the R channel balance when driving higher signals. I can now pretty reliably reproduce the following: play music fairly loud (but not beyond listenable) on the SR-007, and about a minute or 2 in the distortion will appear (fairly abruptly, too) on the R channel. When I pause the input signal, remove headphones, and measure balance at this point, it can read up to 24V or so (!!), while the L channel is still in its reasonable range (under 2V). The R channel will start to drop back down to a reasonable value over the next few/several minutes as the signal is paused, but this seems to indicate a problem. It kind of seems like there's signal level at which the distortion/instability is triggered. I'm pushing 4-6dB more signal into the 007 vs. 009 and Lambda Pro for comparable volumes -- which I guess is why this has never occurred yet with Lambda Pros. And only once being stupid with the 009.
  10. Thanks Spritzer -- 30 mins into warmup (not to adjust, just to check), and the balance and offset Voltages for both channels look fairly reasonable and stable (biggest number I saw was a touch over 5V for an offset and 3V for balance). I'll check again after 2 hours; maybe try to adjust them a bit closer to 0 if possible. I can eventually give trimpot replacement a shot if the noise proves problematic with continued use -- I read about how to adjust each of the 1K/2K before installation. Is there any potential danger to headphones from something like this, if the noisy part gets worse? I thought the only real danger to headphones was if the bias got way higher than 580V for some reason -- is that correct?
  11. Cool, so if the R channel trimpots get replaced, then there's at least a chance it will resolve the issue? Also, is the KGSShv trimpot adjustment procedure anything at all like this: HeadAmp Blue Hawaii SE (BHSE) Electrostatic Amp Bias Adjustment
  12. Is that the 1K trimpot labeled "Offset", and do you think the problem is that the adjustment is out of whack? Edit: Ah, VR="variable resistor"? I am not a DIY'er obviously, but I'd like to pick up bits where I can.
  13. Any ideas what could be potential causes of intermittent noise & distortion on a 500V onboard KGSShv in a single channel? This unit uses boards from Lil Knight. The issue first reared its head with SR-009 a few weeks ago; I shut it down for the night, and then the amp continued playing clean until 2 days ago. It's a noticeable hash/grunge type distortion to the signal that has occurred while playing moderate-to-loud levels, and is readily apparent when I switch the source signal to mono to confirm the distortion's presence in the R channel. When I pause the source after this starts, there's a "rustling leaves" type noise floor in the R channel that sounds a lot like when a small-signal tube goes noisy/bad (this noise is very audible, but would be masked by the signal, so I believe it's 2 separate artifacts). The amp had been on for several hours each time it's occurred; the last 2 times it appeared very quickly after I switched from Lambda Pros at a moderate level to SR-007 at a higher level. I've verified with a rock-solid 400V offboard KGSShv that the issue is isolated to this 500V amp. Would love to know whether anyone else knows what this might be just from my meager description, though I realize that may not be possible. Hopefully more along the lines of "dance this jig" or "replace this part" rather than "rebuild the board". Possibly unrelated, the Alpha pot on this unit isn't very smooth and consistent on this unit, unlike the very smooth Alpha pot on the 400V amp. The damn thing sounds pretty amazing when clean, too -- almost on par with a BHSE.
  14. Thanks for the birthday wishes, and hb to sherwood and grand enigma as well!! Thursday was not such a great time, between a work project and gf issues (all my fault, of course), but I had nice flanking days Wednesday and Saturday, so not too shabby overall.
  15. I need to hear all that new gear! Last night I heard an Innovation Wood Compact on my old speakers & preamp; it was pretty friggin' sweet even with just an Ortofon $1200 Cadenza Red. Bass impact wasn't fully there, but I know that's typical for that combination of other gear.
  16. There certainly is a notable difference between the balance of EC's internal 3440 vs. Bob's 1131 in my system. The latter has better clarity but is drier, and definitely has less bass impact. Also, the 3440 makes me want to push the Tannoy 1kHz+ shelving control up to +1.5 dB (sounds great that way), while the 1131 makes we want to put it back to flat 0.0. Two possibilities: 1. There's a loading difference between the 2 options; this Transcription might have a non-standard loading in the MC and/or MM input. I see what looks like a 50K resistor in each barrier strip, but don't know if that affects MC and/or MM loading, or if that's even the "stock" resistor -- eddiecurrent.com doesn't have manuals (that I can find), so I'll call Craig up to see what's going on here. 2. (the less likely culprit) I've had to use a different gain setting in my preamp between the 2, and the input impedance does go lower as you bump up gain (a 5 position knob) -- but we're talking something like 250K vs 150K here, which shouldn't be a big deal.
  17. Yeah -- the 1131 on the VAC (bypassing its Lundahls) had given me a great initial impression, but yesterday with the 1131 & EC there were times I was wishing for more "meat on the bones". Patched in the EC's 3440, and there it was. I'll listen a few more times and see how this sorts out. The midrange did seem less "smeared" and cleaner on the 1131, but dammit I like how hard these speakers hit when everything's just right, and I'm reluctant to sacrifice anything there if it comes down to that. Perhaps my Koetsu doesn't have extra bass impact to spare, whereas something like an Ortofon Windfeld would have ridiculous impact with any of these combinations (too bad I hated its recessed midrange and sizzle up top). It's something I'd consider. Had a Sonic Frontiers Phono 1 with a JFET based MC gain stage (into a 4x 6922 MM stage), and it was lovely, if a bit over-warm (and lacking some detail, which is what got me looking for better). I love tubes, but those JFETs did not offend. I don't need a ton of gain; 54-60dB would do. Do you use a standalone headamp or an integrated MC phono stage?
  18. Been playing with phono stage stuff again...Cinemag 1131 SUT, Eddie Current Transcription, and Rogue Ares compared to my VAC preamp's built-in MC/MM. I'd like to wean myself off the VAC's phono so I can sell it. I will not be upgrading to VAC's new $50K [Price]Statement Phono. The Ares has some excellent qualities, but overall sounds like it was voiced by a guy who listens to more digital than vinyl; I like vinyl to sound rich & warm. I love my Rogue pre/power, but I'm just not feeling it here. The EC is a real nice surprise, especially at just $700 used. It and the VAC built-in both have superb voicing, even with stock tubes. It's close, but the EC may have the edge overall. So that may do it for me -- I should probably just stop here and enjoy for (at least) a year. But of course, I'm curious about those who've had experience with the EC, especially owners: what did you settle on? Are you still running it or did you upgrade, and if the latter, what did it take to beat the Transcription? On to the SUTs -- I like what the Bob's Devices 1131 does from the midrange & up, but last night comparing to the 3440 (built-in to the EC), it seemed that the 3440 not only had more bass "bloom", but also more bass power as well. I gotta admit, I'd have expected a more clear-cut victory for the 1131 given the price differential. Any users of the 1131 still out there? The VAC uses Lundahls (I think LL9206), and those are darn nice for the money as well. The Rogue uses 3440 internally, and it's pretty clear it doesn't get its voicing from the SUT.
  19. I'm sure there's an abundance of trash-quality GE tubes, but I've run across a number of GE tubes (50's to early 60s vintage) that I like a LOT. The GE black plate 5751 is superb; I end up going to this tube more frequently than Mullard long-plate, Amperex lp, Telefunken, Tung-Sol, and RCA bp 12AX7. They've got a natural kind of warmth that's not overbearing (I like RCA tubes but sometimes they're just too damn warm), plus superb focus and clarity. Way more musical than the 3-mica grey plate 5751 Sylvania (1962-63), which are bright and border on unlistenable. I've had bad luck with most Sylvania tubes, and tend to stay away now. Haven't tried the GE 12AX7, though. I've got some red-label GE 1963 12AY7 that are interesting and can be used in place of the 12AX7 in some applications. Nice and neutral, clean sound. I'm finding the GE 5814 to an excellent 12AU7 sub (as driver tubes in my monoblocks, to go along with the 12AX7) if you don't need added warmth in this position (in fact, if you need a touch of added top-end zing). I'd been using 12BH7 (RCA, which are warm and a bit dark), but in the current system the GE 5814 sounds right. I don't even have a construction-matched quad of these things in my amps! Mixing 2-mica, 3-mica, with posts, no posts -- how's that for becoming slightly less OCD with age The GE 6BX7GT was superb as the cathode follower tubes in my SDS headphone amp. The GE 7581A (pink-ish base) sounded awesome as a KT66/6L6GC substitute in a pair of restored Heathkit W5 amps. I think all of the ones I listed above are rapidly getting scarce and/or pricey, though It's a bias, but I'd stay away from late-60s, 70s, and 80s vintage small-signal tubes of any make, at all costs. Honestly the modern production tubes should typically be way better than that trash. Haven't yet found a modern tube to sound awful, but I've certainly had vintage tubes that are such.
  20. Interesting, I'll have to grab a friend and do some blind tests. Sighted, it seems that the differences between potato vs. grain is significant, but even the variance among potato vodkas is large. Grain vodkas tend to be more similar, the worse ones being decidedly less smooth (i.e. making you wonder whether rubbing alcohol could be much worse). Lately, I've tried Chopin and Boyd & Blair, both potato vodkas. I like the Chopin (potato; ~ $38 @750mL, so not cheap) a whole lot. The B&B is bizarre; it doesn't taste like vodka. It reminds me more of Don Julio Blanco tequila than it does of other vodkas. I like Don Julio, but not sure I like this flavor in a vodka. I'd be surprised if the difference between either of these and a low-rung grain vodka (like Svedka, ick) wasn't readily apparent in a blind test. As for grain vodkas, I was never a big fan of Grey Goose; not that much better tasting (if at all) than cheaper vodkas, and thus overpriced. Absolut has been an ok go-to when nothing else is available.
  21. Cheers dude! Happy birthday!!
  22. Thanks Wayne - funny you mention the toaster. I finally sold it a year/two ago, but as we speak I've got Purk's SDS - THE original toaster - here on loan/audition. I'd love to buy that amp, but to be honest it the investment doesn't make sense without a headphone beyond the HD650. And I'd love to buy the L3000 to go with it, but at that point it's serious money, and I get far more enjoyment from my Tannoy 2ch rig anyways. Still, I've got to give props to that amp. As cracked out as Mikhail was, and as much damage as he caused to me and (especially) others these past few years, that toaster SDS with 2x 6BX7T and 1x Western Electric 396A remains the best sounding headphone amp I've heard.
  23. Thanks, all!! I've been far too immersed with work stuff this week to really think about or do much else. Just doing whatever it takes to keep the privilege of my work-from-home, no alarm clocks (hardly) ever lifestyle. However, tonight I will certainly indulge in a concoction of Tannoys, tubes, Koetsus, and high-alcohol content ales! I've been thinking about new speakers - only because I want a bigger, more efficient version of what I've already got (Kensington SE). These guys pictured below (auditioned a while back) came very close, but didn't quite have the necessary sweetness in the midrange. Also, I hated that teak finish and styling. Next try will be the Tannoy Canterbury SE, when I'm able to pony up some cash.
  24. Happy birthday-week Birgir!!
  25. Why would you post a link to a blog written by a half-illiterate retard...here, of all places?
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