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    Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

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    WntrMute2

    Posts : 96
    Join date : 2010-11-21

    Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by WntrMute2 on Sat Mar 10, 2012 6:44 pm

    I'm looking at buying a quad of either of these for my ST-120. Any consensus as to which ones to buy. Price is the same. Can't audition either set. Really want to keep a set on hand for spares.
    Thanks in advance

    PeterCapo

    Posts : 380
    Join date : 2008-12-05

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by PeterCapo on Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:35 pm

    I assume you are thinking of the KT-88? I can tell you what my impressions are from reading I have done. It seems that the Gold Lion gets higher marks for sound quality than the "standard" Chinese version, though usually at a higher cost. But, cost doesn't appear to be an issue in your case. The Shuguang Treasures are another story, as are the PSVANE versions. Commentaries I have read seem to indicate these run with the Gold Lions, performance-wise. Some folks also seem to really like the solid plate Penta version of the Chinese tube, as well.

    Two caveats. First, you might want to have a read in the Tubes forum over at Audio Asylum. There have been some reports of the Gold Lion KT88 having short service life, though there is a reputable seller who swears by them. I don't quite know what to make of it.

    Something else that has always bugged me is that almost every octal base Chinese tube I have owned, or have seen images of, has pins that are splayed-out. They are hard to get into the tube sockets and it feels to me like they really stress the socket contacts, possibly deforming them.

    Anyway, this is what comes to mind.

    Peter

    ArlanB

    Posts : 52
    Join date : 2011-01-23
    Age : 69
    Location : Santa Cruz, California

    Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by ArlanB on Sat Mar 10, 2012 11:22 pm

    I have had Penta Labs KT88SC's in my VTA ST-120 for over 2 years now and I really like their sound. They are the solid plate version. Have not had any trouble with splayed pins, however the solder job at the tips of the pins sometimes needs minor burr removal to facilitate ease of seating the tubes for the first time. I have also had Gold Lion KT88s which lasted all of two and a half weeks before catastrophic failure. So I moved on to Chinese tubes after trying JJ, and Elektroharmonics as well. None of the tubes from Russia seem to last very long.

    Psvane and Treasure series from Shuguang are out of my budget range.

    ArlanB

    WntrMute2

    Posts : 96
    Join date : 2010-11-21

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by WntrMute2 on Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:01 am

    Yes, the tubes are KT-88s. Although I could be convinced to try the KT-120s

    mantha3

    Posts : 298
    Join date : 2010-11-10

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by mantha3 on Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:51 pm

    I run a quad of Shuguang treasure KT88s in my ST120 and they sound excellent.

    Take a look at Grant Fidelity online. They sell these and the normal Shuguang KT88. Take a look at the Psvane line... Good stuff.

    WntrMute2

    Posts : 96
    Join date : 2010-11-21

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by WntrMute2 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:35 pm

    Bob,you got an opinion on this? What do you think about the KT-120s in your ST-120?

    avi.inc

    Posts : 53
    Join date : 2009-08-03
    Age : 63
    Location : L.A.

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by avi.inc on Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:50 pm

    Not Bob

    I have KT-120 in my st-120 and i love them. I had three set of the goldlions and they never lasted very long (three to four months) The KT-120 almost 18 months and no problems and i think they sound better!!

    Bob Latino
    Admin

    Posts : 2374
    Join date : 2008-11-26
    Location : Massachusetts

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by Bob Latino on Thu Mar 15, 2012 7:31 am

    WntrMute2 wrote:Bob,you got an opinion on this? What do you think about the KT-120s in your ST-120?

    The Tung-Sol KT120's work great in both the VTA ST-120 and the VTA M-125 monoblocks. To my ears, the KT120's are a little "tubier" sounding than the GL KT88's. Kind of like an EL34 on steroids .. Because the KT120's have a higher voltage rating and the plates are physically larger than a KT88's plates, they should be more durable tubes than KT88's in both amps .. Below is a photo that I have posted before. I did a temperature test with an infrared thermometer running KT120's in my own VTA ST-120. The amp does run a little warmer but works fine and sounds great with the KT120 tubes ..

    Bob



    WntrMute2

    Posts : 96
    Join date : 2010-11-21

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by WntrMute2 on Fri Mar 16, 2012 5:38 am

    Any thoughts on whether using the KT-120s stress that 5ar4 rectifier any more than with the KT-88s?

    Bob Latino
    Admin

    Posts : 2374
    Join date : 2008-11-26
    Location : Massachusetts

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by Bob Latino on Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:05 am

    As long as you bias the KT120 like a KT88 in the ST-120 amp (55 milliamps per each output tube), it doesn't seem to stress out a GZ34 tube rectifier any more than a KT88.

    Bob

    jdm

    Posts : 45
    Join date : 2011-04-04

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by jdm on Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:51 pm

    I run the Tung-Sol KT120's for several hours a day and have over 1000 hours on a quad and agree with Bob on the sound. I also like the GL's and have over 500 hours on those and use them to listen to my different 12AT7's. I do run those KT-120's with 3 new inexpensive Tung-Sol 12AT7's and they seem to have great transparency with the KT120's verses the NOS Mullard E180CC's from Holland. Mullard GZ34 is a must upgrade. I assume most quality tubes for the VTA ST-120 are interesting to listen and enjoy. A quad of Shuguang KT88s will also sound great in this amp. "Svitanak" tonight and Szechwan
    tomorrow!

    evgenibgr

    Posts : 12
    Join date : 2012-02-28

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by evgenibgr on Wed Mar 21, 2012 4:01 am

    jdm wrote: the NOS Mullard E180CC's from Holland.

    Could you please share your impressions of the sound of "NOS Mullard E180CC's from Holland" in the center position.

    jdm

    Posts : 45
    Join date : 2011-04-04

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by jdm on Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:58 am

    Here is a link that reviews the Mullard E180CC and several other tubes.

    http://www.artsandmedia.com/5965.html

    mantha3

    Posts : 298
    Join date : 2010-11-10

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by mantha3 on Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:33 am

    I run some Phillips SQ E180CC in my ST120. I run a Mullard CV millitary 12at7 in the middle VTA volt amp spot and then these E180CC in the phase splitter spots right and left on the VTA.

    I'd go to E Pay and look up a Langrex in England. They are good to buy from ( I have and Bob I think has) and they have these. Buy two and get a matched pair. These are industrial and will last longer then us!

    mantha3

    Posts : 298
    Join date : 2010-11-10

    Re: Shuguang vs. Gold Lion

    Post by mantha3 on Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:58 am

    PS - Try a nice NOS pair of 6414 GE black plates in place of the 12AT7... Smooth as silk and excellent! Long lasting 10,000 hour tubes.

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