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  1. #1

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    Default Cary Tube amp - preamp combo recommendation(s)?

    Guys,

    I am bored, and thought about making an upgrade (again) to a tube combo amp preamp to replace a Krell 400xi Integrated.

    Setup:
    Speaker/sub: LSi15, REL Storm III
    Source: Modded APLHifi Pioneer DV-563
    Cable/IC: MIT Shotgun Biwire/IC S2
    Other: PS Audio Ultimate Outlet

    Budget: $3K - $5K for the combo.

    I really have nothing to complain about the current setup other than wanting to try out a dead quiet tube setup. I tried to pair the Krell with a Dodd MLP pre/amp before and the resulting sound, albeit very good, came with annoying hum.

    Thanks in advance, gents..
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

  2. #2

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    For the amps, you could go with the "Cary" AES Sixpacs; I had them for a few months and loved them; sold them just to help pay for the bike :o to Bruce (Tour2ma); he might chime in with thoughts.

    You can grab them for $1600-1800 in Audiogon

    Edit: Linky http://www.sixpacs.com/
    Last edited by Ricardo; 11-28-2006 at 07:15 PM.
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  3. #3

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    There are some killer stuff from ASL in that price range. www.divertech.com
    Before buying, figure out what kind of design you want. Single ended amps have a continuity and ease to the presentation that my push-pull amp just can't do. The different families of output tubes have their own sound signature.
    Don't forget also, that at your price range, you could get a builder to design and make something really good for you.
    CD Player: Original CD-A8T
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  4. #4

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    You're using this for your LSI15 and not for your lovely SF Cremonas?

    Joey
    Joey's College Gear:
    Current Gear:
    SB3 -> PS Audio DAC III -> Cary Audio SLP-98Phono Tube PreAmp w/ Sylvania NOS 6sn7 tubes -> Plinius SA102 Class A amp -> Martin Logan SUMMIT/Strata Mini -> :D
    Old Gear:
    Martin Logan Vantage (4.75/5)-ML Mosaic (4.25/5)-Onix Ref1 (3.7/5)-Sonus Faber Concerto (3.5/5)-SF Concertino (3/5)-Axiom M22ti (2.75/5)-Polk LSi9 (3.75/5)-LSi7 (3.25/5)-HK AVR330-Rotel RC1070/RB1070/RB1090-SVS 25-31PC+ sub
    RUSH Med School 2008!!:D

  5. #5

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    he he he, for reason that I might be the only one who can understand: this system is in the bedroom, so it gets played less than the main one. SF is in the main room, which is double up as my HT (yep, the SF still down there in the living room, along with LSiC, LSi9 and LSiFx, calibrated and actually pretty good on HT). I am not about to break my back switching them around up the stairs.

    Joey, what do you think of JM Lab.focal: Chorus 700V?

    http://www.focal.tm.fr/accueil_en.htm

    appearance is a 9 (to me). Don't know about the sound.
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

  6. #6

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    My friend,

    I'm impressed that you're spending about $5K for a bedroom power setup... envious I am!

    Anyway, regarding the 700V, I have heard their bigger brothers (800V Chorus) and I thought they sounded quite good for the price. I honestly think they are stiff competitions to the LSi and I prefer the LSi for certain aspects of the sound while preferring the 800V for others. No clear cut winner for me... the 700V, I dont know. But I think the 800V and the 700V are exactly the same except for the finishes. I would say that the 700V and the LSi (in essence) are on the same level.

    Regarding your amps.... I dont have a solid recommendation as to which tube amp you should get, but I do have a preamp recommendation for you... the Cary SLP-98L that I have. It's about $4K depending on upgrades, but it's a super solid preamplifier that is tubey AND resolute/transparent at the same time. Very good!

    I just took delivery of the 98 a few days ago and am in the process of comparing it to my Rogue tube pre.... but truly, there is no comparison. There's a reason why it's Stereophile's current Class A tube preamp.

    Joey
    Joey's College Gear:
    Current Gear:
    SB3 -> PS Audio DAC III -> Cary Audio SLP-98Phono Tube PreAmp w/ Sylvania NOS 6sn7 tubes -> Plinius SA102 Class A amp -> Martin Logan SUMMIT/Strata Mini -> :D
    Old Gear:
    Martin Logan Vantage (4.75/5)-ML Mosaic (4.25/5)-Onix Ref1 (3.7/5)-Sonus Faber Concerto (3.5/5)-SF Concertino (3/5)-Axiom M22ti (2.75/5)-Polk LSi9 (3.75/5)-LSi7 (3.25/5)-HK AVR330-Rotel RC1070/RB1070/RB1090-SVS 25-31PC+ sub
    RUSH Med School 2008!!:D

  7. #7

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    BAT, Cary, and Musical Fidelity are all top shelf and make units around your stated range although they would need to be from the used market. The Dodd is very good and I still enjoy mine and see it being part of one of my musical rigs.

    Under the FWIW department my MLP has no hum with a B&K ss, during polkfest the Anthem and Classe amps we hooked it to were quiet.

    The BAT-31SE is as neutral and detailed a pre I have had the pleasure of owning, all of the BAT tube and sand amps are highly regarded each offering short signal paths, without multiple gain stages, which one just depends on how much power you think you might want. If you go BAT look for gear with the BAT-PAK option a series of capacitors.

    The Muscial Fidelity integrated pieces are top notch offering alot clean power with tubed output and seperate power supply, again a neutral sounding piece with great extension into the lower register. I have seen these units at what I consider to be very reasonable prices. Very nice clean looking units, I would check out the Tri-Vista class gear I could imagine an out of this world bedroom unit using one of these, however, would not be suprised if it did not stay there.

    Of course there are numerous others but at least there are three here to consider. I have only heard the Cary in a demo store but I would certainly put it right there with the others based on that rooms sound with that rooms gear. Really just a matter of taste, the Cary does offer gear with exposed tubes that looks very good.

    RT1
    REEL TIME THEATRE
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    Everthing Matters...Tubes Rule...and It's Over until it's Not Over

  8. #8

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    Thanks guys!

    Joey, perhaps I am easiy impressed by finishes, but I thought the focal looks better than the LSi. Thanks for your insights, I thought of moving up to their HT set from LSi, but it looks like it won't be an upgrade.

    On the Cary, is there a matching power amp for that preamp? I will definitely go the used route if I am going to make it happen.

    RT1, on the MLP, it was a shame that I wasn't able to make it work with the Krell. Paul (PJdami) has done similar test, but I don't believe it was MLP. The culprit (I think) is more of the Krell. Tri-Vista is a very nice integrated, but I am going the separate way this time, in essense, to replace the Krell.
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

  9. #9

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    My friend,

    I do notice that a lot of Cary SLP-98 owners run it with the Cary 805 Class A tube monoblocks. Only problem is that the 805 is very costly @ $11K for the pair. I'm not sure how low it would be on the gon'.....

    Joey

    http://caryaudio.com/products/classic.html
    Joey's College Gear:
    Current Gear:
    SB3 -> PS Audio DAC III -> Cary Audio SLP-98Phono Tube PreAmp w/ Sylvania NOS 6sn7 tubes -> Plinius SA102 Class A amp -> Martin Logan SUMMIT/Strata Mini -> :D
    Old Gear:
    Martin Logan Vantage (4.75/5)-ML Mosaic (4.25/5)-Onix Ref1 (3.7/5)-Sonus Faber Concerto (3.5/5)-SF Concertino (3/5)-Axiom M22ti (2.75/5)-Polk LSi9 (3.75/5)-LSi7 (3.25/5)-HK AVR330-Rotel RC1070/RB1070/RB1090-SVS 25-31PC+ sub
    RUSH Med School 2008!!:D

  10. #10

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    I think you should add Modwright & VTL to your search. McAlister Audio makes a great pre but it doesn't have a remote. What about the new battery powered Dodd pre? Good luck :)
    Last edited by halo; 11-30-2006 at 10:02 AM.
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