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#65286 - 04/29/07 03:27 AM New member looking for a new pre
Healy6er Offline
Deputy Gunslinger

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 5
Loc: Louisiana
Hello to all. I'm not much of a forum guy, but its gotten to the point that to get some information, I needed to ask some questions.
I've got mostly tube equipment and like to keep using them. I listen to music through the tube preamps and have the tube power amps all the time for surround. I am using a Yamaha 740 as the pre for the HT setup. Its got a problem-6 years without a problem-but now one of the main channels is lower than the other(6 db lower) and its time for a change anyway. I've always had separates along the way since the late 60's. I switched to tubes about 8 years ago, giving my last set of SS amps (SAE 502) to each of our kids and sold the most of my stuff on ebay.
I read a lot of the comments and tried looking at the equipment most of the members have to get an idea of how someone with tubes would like the 990 pre. I have seen just one member that has tubes.
I read that the 990 is transparent. Is it transparent compared to what ? How does it compare to the older or newer tube pres ? Does it compare close to the sound of a passive in direct mode ?
I'm looking to get a replacement for the Yamaha that I can like in stereo also. I've listen to the AVM 30 a year or so back and couldn't see spending the 3 grand on it. I spent several hours with the AVP700 yesterday and its a good pre, and I'll be getting it for a better price than the used prices on the net, but its very laid back with hardly any of the tubes sound.
I'd like the idea of a company here selling something I want so its a step toward Outlaw. I don't like reading about Mr. OTTO's, and others it seems, problem with the bass management . Is it wide spread with all the pre's and no one has noticed?
I rely on customer feed back 95% , magazine and dealer .5% and the wife's 100%. :^)
I'd really like all the feed back you can give. I need it. The 30 day return is a nice program, I'm not one that can do that easily. I'd rather have done all the hashing up front.

thanks healy6er ('60 big healy 8)
_________________________
Altec 9440
Ma-230
C-26
Cit 1
Cit V
Scott 130
Scott 399
HF-22s
Cabasse Egea II s
ADS L560s
AR-5s
B&K

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#65287 - 04/29/07 04:08 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
psyprof1 Offline
Desperado

Registered: 09/10/05
Posts: 443
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
Healy6er, my tube experience may be too ancient to help but here goes: I started out with Dynakits (PAS-2x and Stereo 70) late in the last millennium but the last speakers I drove with the Stereo 70 were either NHT Super Zeroes or the Cambridge Soundworks Ensembles. This was an unmodified ST70. I still have it; it needs some repair, but the idea of pushing it with the 990 (stereo, LF and RF outputs only) has occurred to me now & then. The problem, besides the work needed, is whether the ST70's 15-dbw power output would be enough for my 86-db sensitive Magneplanars, especially after the 20-dbw Adcom I'm now using. (Power output stated in watts is a deceptive concept, I'm not going to use it, and I wish Outlaw would have the guts to drop it and go to dbw: decibels above one watt.)
Most of what I've read about the listening benefits of tubes vs. SS has suggested that those benefits are mostly early in the amplification chain, which would imply a tube preamp driving a solid state power amp. But tube home theater stuff? Does it even exist?
One other thought: Musical Fidelity (look for them in Audio Advisor) used to sell a two-channel tube "buffer" unit that they said would bring the benefits of tube sound when mounted between preamps and power amps. Maybe someone else has had experience with it. I'm sure someone else can give Healy6er more useful information.
Re bass management, sorry but I haven't yet invested in a subwoofer. But I really, really like the 990's sound with the rest of my present equipment. Since none of it, except my AR turntable, is the same as I had with the Dyna preamp which I don't have any more, I can't answer any "compared with" questions.

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#65288 - 04/29/07 05:35 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
Healy6er Offline
Deputy Gunslinger

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 5
Loc: Louisiana
psyprof1, newer rating systems are making my teeth grind. Your right I'm sure, like the ratings for gas and diesel engines have gone to kw instead of hp. I'll have to look up how to convert. I tested the 1.6 or 1.8 Magies (can't remember) with my HK Cit. V 40 wpc and they push them very well. They were being pushed with VTLs at the time.
My main pres are HK Cit 1, Scott 130 and a birdnests version of the Ground grid from Transcendent Sound, I have others also but seldom are used. There are surround sound tube preamps Fosgate makes one and is out of my reach.

Time to take out the soldier gun and lets fix the 70.
_________________________
Altec 9440
Ma-230
C-26
Cit 1
Cit V
Scott 130
Scott 399
HF-22s
Cabasse Egea II s
ADS L560s
AR-5s
B&K

Top
#65289 - 04/30/07 05:20 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
psyprof1 Offline
Desperado

Registered: 09/10/05
Posts: 443
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
Thanks for the good words, Healy6er. Good to hear that the HK Citation 40w (= 16 dbw) will drive the Maggie 1.6 (there's no 1.8 but no matter - all Maggies have about the same sensitivity). The ST70 has 1-2 dbw less output than the HK and maybe not quite the sound quality, but your advice is encouraging. When time permits - like maybe in a couple of weeks - I might indeed start the 70 project.

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#65290 - 04/30/07 01:23 PM Re: New member looking for a new pre
nfaguys Offline
Desperado

Registered: 04/09/05
Posts: 500
Loc: Maine
Question about tubes:

This thread recalled something I had heard concerning the issue of tubes v SS.

Here goes with issues:

(1)tube component starts out working 100% with new tubes. As time goes by either tubes deteriorate or at least they don't function 100%.

(2) tubes have to be replaced to get back to LN.

(3) more heat with tubes.

Years and years ago I had an integrated amp/preamp. I think the brand name was REGENCY. Chassis and front panel were gold color. big transformers were black. It was mono. Does that date me or what??? laugh

Oh...The speaker was Electrovoice in a model Regency (coincidence) cabinet. Haven't seen one in years. And when I went stereo (some of you may remember the store) I bought a cabinet in kit form from ALLIED RADIO 100 N. Western Ave in Chicago.
Curious if anyone recalls any of the above.

Yes (answer to one question above. That dates me frown
_________________________
Living Room:
5.1 Surround and 4channel inline room
990/7700/6-KEF-107s/LFM1 x 2/ SMS Awaiting Trinnov
Millenium dts decoder;Digital Director
Players: Tascam CD01U/SonyCX455 x 3/DV955/BDP83
Old Sony 60" SXRD TV
Zone 2 (also liv-Room: listening to music while Mrs watches TV): Crown SL2 preamp/D40 Amp/Stax Headphones



My "Man-cave":
4 channel-only inline room. No TV (thank heaven)!!!
990/755/4-KEF 107s
Tascam CD01U/dts decoder/digital director
Alesis 16x4x2 mixer
Recorders Alesis HD24/ML9600/Crown CX844s/SonyDAT/Tascam DA38
Ham Radio Shack (KB1STH) ICOM/Yaesu/Drakes x 3

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#65291 - 04/30/07 11:41 PM Re: New member looking for a new pre
Healy6er Offline
Deputy Gunslinger

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 5
Loc: Louisiana
psyprof1

I drive over 250 miles to buy the Maggie 1.6 (thanks) with a tube amp in arm, my son carrying the pre and the wife with the check book. Off to Houston, got there, really nice folks,let me play all I wanted,offered wine or beer-something to eat-drink all for nothing. The wife says no way on the monoliths. They are still in my head, can't shake them.

also how or where do I find out how to convert between the newer and older rating systems?
_________________________
Altec 9440
Ma-230
C-26
Cit 1
Cit V
Scott 130
Scott 399
HF-22s
Cabasse Egea II s
ADS L560s
AR-5s
B&K

Top
#65292 - 05/01/07 12:27 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
Healy6er Offline
Deputy Gunslinger

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 5
Loc: Louisiana
nfaguys

I'm not dated- its just this joint thing that keeps reminding me
of "I've seen better days". wink

I stated that I wanted to keep using the tubes cause I like the sound with my speakers. I've heard ss amps and really like them and still have an Altec 9440 with balance in and outs which I'm gonna try with the 990, thats on the way.
My speakers are 94.5 db @1watt@1 meter to work with tubes-just about all tubes at that rating. I've had 7591s in my mac for several years now and they still test strong with the amp used daily. Its not unusual to find 60's amps with original tubes-at least the driver and preamp sections. Anyways my first tubed thingy was an Admiral (phono/radio) grandma's gift to me to get that old thing out the house (gramps got a SS stereo in other words)-mid to late 60's and was used to listen to Beaker Street and heat the room on cold nites--now hows that for dated.

Looking at your systems do you have two 990 preamps or switch between the 7700 and 755 crown with the one?
_________________________
Altec 9440
Ma-230
C-26
Cit 1
Cit V
Scott 130
Scott 399
HF-22s
Cabasse Egea II s
ADS L560s
AR-5s
B&K

Top
#65293 - 05/01/07 02:45 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
nfaguys Offline
Desperado

Registered: 04/09/05
Posts: 500
Loc: Maine
Healy6er wrote:

Looking at your systems do you have two 990 preamps or switch between the 7700 and 755 crown with the one?

I have two systems. I don't actually have a dedicated HT, however. In the living room there is a 990 feeding a 7700. This is where the TV Oppo etc are. Downstairs in my "office-studio room" or (whatever one would call it) which is where I transcribe my old 4 channel CROWN 15 ips tapes I have a 990 and 755. This room is not for TV or surround sound. I have 4 Crown electrostats...arranged in-line. This reproduces the imaging the way we recorded big bands etc on Crown tape machines, years ago.

I had been using Crown SL2 preamps, feeding 4 CROWN DC300A's of varying vintage. The amps fed the speakers bi-amped. I liked the sound so much from the 990-755 combo which had been in the living room that I kept the 755 and started to sell off the DC300A's. The 990 was an obious choice to replace the Crown preamps. All I can tell you is that having replaced with outlaw (even considering the [old] 755 the sound is soooooo much better now. I wrote about this awhile back. The change to outlaw from Crown breathed new life into those old (1970a) Crown electrostats.

I care more for the audio than TV or movies, so the change both upstairs and down was wonderful.
Hope this helps explain, and I'm sorry if there was confusion.
_________________________
Living Room:
5.1 Surround and 4channel inline room
990/7700/6-KEF-107s/LFM1 x 2/ SMS Awaiting Trinnov
Millenium dts decoder;Digital Director
Players: Tascam CD01U/SonyCX455 x 3/DV955/BDP83
Old Sony 60" SXRD TV
Zone 2 (also liv-Room: listening to music while Mrs watches TV): Crown SL2 preamp/D40 Amp/Stax Headphones



My "Man-cave":
4 channel-only inline room. No TV (thank heaven)!!!
990/755/4-KEF 107s
Tascam CD01U/dts decoder/digital director
Alesis 16x4x2 mixer
Recorders Alesis HD24/ML9600/Crown CX844s/SonyDAT/Tascam DA38
Ham Radio Shack (KB1STH) ICOM/Yaesu/Drakes x 3

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#65294 - 05/01/07 05:49 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
psyprof1 Offline
Desperado

Registered: 09/10/05
Posts: 443
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
Healy6er, I'm afraid spousal acceptance can often be a problem with Maggies. Three thoughts there: (1) If the 1.6es (1.6s? 1.6's?) in Houston had black covers, your wife may have thought them intimidating; they look more domestic, almost like room divider panels, in off-white. Flanking our display cabinets my wife finds them quite acceptable - so long as I don't advance them into the room! (2) There are home theater Maggies which have no footprint at all because they're mounted on walls or the front corners of tall cabinets of the kind that usually have glass doors and are used to display glass or maybe audio components. However the best of them roll off around 80 Hz so a subwoofer is a necessity, which might bring up acceptance problems again. (3) If only the covers could be replaced with stretched silk with Chinese landscape prints - magnificent. But I don't know anyone who's doing that. Show her page 101 in the current Absolute Sound - a new "invisible" system which isn't on their web site yet.
Re the "newer rating system" - would that it were! Amplifier tests in the defunct "High Fidelity" magazine used it. Conversion is easy if you have a calculator (or, I'll bet you remember slide rules!) that does logarithms. The figure for decibels above one watt (dbw) is simply ten times the common log of the output power figure in watts. So a 5-watt amplifier would be (10 x .699 =) 6.99, or (round off to) 7 decibels above one watt or dbw. But a 50-watt amp would be (10 x 1.7 to keep it simple =) 17 dbw and a 500-watter would be (10 x 2.7 =) 27 dbw. Since we hear volume changes logarithmically the dbw system keeps the comparisons between amplifiers pretty much like how we hear them. Of course advertising departments would probably resist converting to dbw's: "dollars per watt" language would become nonsense and "dollars per dbw" would be pretty hard on both high-power SS gear and high-end tube gear.
Maybe I shouldn't say it here but if you like tube gear, have you thought about the supersensitive, very-high-end, almost full-range speakers like Lowthers? They have no crossovers, are hard to match with subwoofers, and really don't need more than 10 dbw (which conveniently equals 10 watts) - but the detail and "thereness" is incredible. More for stereo music listening than HT, though. Just a thought.
Cheers,
Paul

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#65295 - 05/11/07 10:57 AM Re: New member looking for a new pre
Arky Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 11/21/06
Posts: 67
Loc: Central Ark
Heealy6er: This peach may interest you. Mark Deneen from the Klipsch forum makes them. Designed for tube users with a home theater pass-thru mode.
_________________________
Outlaw 990/7500; QSC 2402; Sony dvd;
Dish vip 622; Panny 50PX75U; H/K 7200
Klipsch RF-7,RC-7,Cornwalls,Cornscala
HeresyII,Heresy; SVS 2039pc+; Sonic Super T

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