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Thread: 300B / 845 SET amplifier

  1. #21
    Join Date: Oct 2016

    Location: London

    Posts: 296
    I'm David.

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    Hi Rob,
    SE rocks indeed (and does every other form of music very well too!) As you might imagine I've had all sorts of exotic 300b SE amps through my workshop from Shindo D'Yquems, to other Japanese, UK, and US exotica. Yet the SE amps I've chosen for my home use are not 300b driven but use 845 and 805 output tubes. Why? Because these amps have decent outputs of circa 50 watts and bash out the frequency extremes with much more realism than a 300b can manage without losing anything in the mid range. In the lounge I've got Mastersound 845 PSE monoblocks, while in my studio I've got modded Ming Da 3008 Cavatinas with 805 tubes. If I were you, as indeed I did, I'd score myself a pair of Ming Da Cavatinas new around £4k or secondhand around £2k and even without a few judicious mods you've got a great performing amp. To my ears, the 805 tube is the great unspoken find, giving around 50 watts per single output tube and more inner music insight than an 845 or 300b. There's enough grunt and drive for any sensible speakers and believe me either of these amps provides massive scale and dynamics that no 300b or 2A3 could ever match. The 805 Cavatina uses 300bs as driver tubes so in fact you do get that 300b magic along with all the benefits of the 805.

    You're not going to get valve rectification for these output tubes but as I've proven the difference between properly designed solid state rectification and tube rectification cannot be identified in A/B testing when voltage is matched. Changing to solid state rectification is quite a common mod now the real classy rectifiers such as GZ34 are getting so expensive. You're very welcome to a listen of down this way
    David

  2. #22
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Norfolk, UK

    Posts: 5,944
    I'm BigBobJoylove.

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    Wow, thanks David for the advice and the offer. I'd not even heard of 805 valves so I'll have a scan around and see what I can find and listen to.

  3. #23
    Join Date: May 2009

    Location: Stäfa (near Zürich), Switzerland

    Posts: 304
    I'm Richard.

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    Don’t discount 211 or GM75 designs either, deliver a reliable 20-25W and match ESLs perfectly.

  4. #24
    Join Date: Apr 2016

    Location: Bishops Stortford

    Posts: 997
    I'm Chris.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Filterlab View Post
    As my love for valves and Class-A continues, I find myself drawn to trying an SET power amp, or ideally monoblocks.
    I have difficulty in seeing why monoblocks have an advantage. Sure, you separate left and right channels, but at a cost of two lots of casework etc. For the same money you could by a stereo amp with much higher quality components and perhaps even better sound than the monoblocks.

    Just throwing it out there.
    SW1X Universal Music Server UMS I Signature with Power Supply Unit PSU I Signature
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    SW1X Open Baffle Speakers containing both vintage and modern alnico drivers and paper cones. All silver wired and crossover-less where possible - 4" vintage Siemens Klangfilm tweeters, 8" SEAS X2-08 EXOTIC W8 midrange drivers and vintage 15" Altec VOTT 416 bass drivers
    Hi fi Collective twin mono ladder stepped attenuator, with Charcroft Z-foil and silver wired.
    Decware Taboo operating as power amp
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  5. #25
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Norfolk, UK

    Posts: 5,944
    I'm BigBobJoylove.

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    Shorter speaker cables is the primary reason, then flexibility in positioning on racks etc., then easy adjustability for level control (if by some chance there's an imbalance), then complete lack of crosstalk and potential interference.

    But there is a price to pay for that of course.

    My current power amp is a dual mono in one chassis and I probably wouldn't notice a difference if it was the monoblocks version.

  6. #26
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Essex

    Posts: 25,325
    I'm openingabottleofwine.

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    I'm a great believer in monoblock amps for the same reasons Rob has listed.

    I have mine located directly behind each speaker, so the speaker cables are less than 1m in length (and could, with some rearrangement of amplifier position, be only 15cm long). The monoblocks are connected to the preamplifier (a true dual-differential balanced design), via blalanced line cables which run under the floor back to the preamp and sources.
    Barry

  7. #27
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 31,347
    I'm Martin.

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    But how long would the speaker cables need to be before the resistance got high enough to actually gave audible degradation? 100 metres? 200 metres?

    I use 3 metre lengths, I can guarantee if I reduced that to 1 metre lengths it wouldn't make any difference to the sound.
    Current Lash Up:

    *Audiolab 6000CDT* Soncoz SGD-1 * Nelson Pass DCB1 * Krell KSA50s * JM Lab Electra 926 *

  8. #28
    Join Date: May 2018

    Location: Woking

    Posts: 690
    I'm Chris.

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    Not necessarily doing it just for the change in impedance/resistance of a long run, but if you are a 'cable guy' (and I am to a certain extent) you then only need 1m per side instead of 5 . . . . which for some cables will cover the increased cost of going the mono-block route.

    Regardless of SQ it can make economic sense (although possibly not for the vast majority).
    System 1: - Amp - Musical Paradise MP-701 - Neurochrome 686
    - Source: Linn LP12 (AT-OC9XEN) - D-Klimo LAR copy - Novafidelity X12 - Soncoz SGD1 -
    - Speakers: Cambridge Acoustic "Grand Master Evolution" - (Quads are in repair!) Subs: - REL T3's -

    System 2 - Amp: Musical Paradise MP 303 - Custom Pre -
    - Source: Audio Technica LP5 - EAR834p clone - Pioneer N-30K - Topping E30 -
    - Speakers: Loth X BS1's - Sub: REL T3 -

  9. #29
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Norfolk, UK

    Posts: 5,944
    I'm BigBobJoylove.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Opti-cal View Post
    Not necessarily doing it just for the change in impedance/resistance of a long run, but if you are a 'cable guy' (and I am to a certain extent) you then only need 1m per side instead of 5 . . . . which for some cables will cover the increased cost of going the mono-block route.
    Or allow one to get a cable which is 5x the price for the same cash. Whether it would be five times better is questionable, but that's the law of diminishing returns for you.
    Main system
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  10. #30
    Join Date: Apr 2016

    Location: Bishops Stortford

    Posts: 997
    I'm Chris.

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    You still need to get (longer) interconnects from the pre amp to the power mono blocks. So is the premise here that speaker cables have more influence on both cost and sound quality?
    SW1X Universal Music Server UMS I Signature with Power Supply Unit PSU I Signature
    SW1X USB II
    SW1X DAC III Special
    SW1X Open Baffle Speakers containing both vintage and modern alnico drivers and paper cones. All silver wired and crossover-less where possible - 4" vintage Siemens Klangfilm tweeters, 8" SEAS X2-08 EXOTIC W8 midrange drivers and vintage 15" Altec VOTT 416 bass drivers
    Hi fi Collective twin mono ladder stepped attenuator, with Charcroft Z-foil and silver wired.
    Decware Taboo operating as power amp
    Silver mains cables, interconnects and speaker cables by SW1X

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