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    Tubes &Solid State

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    bluemeanies

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    Tubes &Solid State

    Post by bluemeanies on Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:08 am

    Question; is there anyone here using Solid State amplifiers as well as Tubes with the same speakers in a bi-amping configuration.
    If so what are your interpretations of what you are hearing as compared to running only tubes?

    Thanks


    Last edited by bluemeanies on Thu Feb 04, 2016 7:05 pm; edited 1 time in total

    Zimmer64

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by Zimmer64 on Wed Feb 03, 2016 3:59 pm

    Hi,

    I use a single ended tube amp to drive the tweeters in my tri amped open baffles. Mids and basses are driven by a gainclone and a chip amp.

    https://zimmer64.wordpress.com/2015/11/08/bg-neo3-betsy-eminence-alpha-15-a-mk-iii/

    I can not try an all tube amp setup, as I don't have enough tube amps and my ST-70 is in another system..... But, I tried all solid state and like the tube setup a lot better. The highs are just more pleasant an natural with the tube amp (in my setup).

    Michael

    GP49

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by GP49 on Wed Feb 03, 2016 8:28 pm

    Separate amplifiers for bass and treble is NOT bi-wiring. It's BI-AMPING.

    Bi-wiring is a single amplifier for each channel with separate wires running to the bass and treble sections of the crossover. Not all crossovers can be wired this way, as some use the impedance of a driver as part of the filter network for another driver.

    daveshel

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by daveshel on Thu Feb 04, 2016 1:18 am

    I've read about bi-wiring before, but never quite got the point.

    I was interested a while back in the viability of a horizontal bi-amp system with an ST-35 for highs and an ST-416 for bass - amps I own. (What GP49 describes above is a vertical bi-amp system.)

    I searched and probably asked here and/or AK, but didn't find anybody who had tried it. I'm still wondering, and if I had speakers that were bi-amp-able I might invest in a crossover to experiment. Still curious...

    Tube Nube

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by Tube Nube on Thu Feb 04, 2016 1:57 am

    I believe, but habent confirmed that bi wiring doesnt result in any improvement... Unless youre using 20' of 30 guage wire, in which case "more is better".

    Bi wiring with 2 monoblock power amps is one way of bi amping. I might get there one day. It avoids messing with external cross overs.

    I guess you could say I'm bi amping. St 70 to my main speakers, and I have powered sub woofers with solid state plate amps built in.

    At those low frequencies, many of the problems associated with solid state are not audible, due to our hearing not being so sensitive to details in that frequency range. So Im using not just solid state, but also, gasp! Equalization to tame room modes--things I would never try at 1000hz. Again, our hearing isnt sensitive to anomalies down there around 20-100hz.

    Of course, your mileage may vary. . . If you're a dog, or an elephant. ;-)

    GP49

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by GP49 on Thu Feb 04, 2016 2:25 am

    Tube Nube wrote:

    I guess you could say I'm bi amping. St 70 to my main speakers, and I have powered sub woofers with solid state plate amps built in.

    At those low frequencies, many of the problems associated with solid state are not audible, due to our hearing not being so sensitive to details in that frequency range.

    That's what I do, too. Modified Mk IIs for the main speakers, running full-range; and a Dynaco Stereo 400 for the subwoofers, driven from a homebrew electronic crossover based on the phono board of a blown-up Fisher transistor integrated amplifier! I tried running tubes on the subwoofers but they really need the additional power, and probably even more, the better control that the low output impedance exerts over the subwoofers. Even Bob Latino's "favorite" amplifier, the Dynaco Stereo 120, worked better on the subwoofers than tube amps!

    Tube Nube

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by Tube Nube on Thu Feb 04, 2016 2:48 pm

    I once heard an interesting multi amp set up at a boutique audio store. They were holding a temptation evening for previous customers. The flag ship system of the evening consisted of Naim's best pre-amp of the time (about 1992), and through an active electronic cross over, 6 monoblock Naim power amps were used to feed Naim DBL 3-way speakers.

    The sound was staggering!

    deepee99

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by deepee99 on Thu Feb 04, 2016 4:22 pm

    I tried bi-wiring for awhile with the Vandersteens, which Dick recommends. Couldn't hear a difference. I've been happy with the Tylers single-wired although they are capable of bi-wiring. Haven't seen a point to the bother.
    Only wisdom I can offer is if you're running a tube preamp in line with a solid state power amp, make sure that the preamp's output/coupling capacitors are capable of the difference. They should be above 2uF or so or the solid-state amps will lose their bass response. S/S amps have a fairly low input impedance (50k ohms or so) while tube amps have a +200 input impedance. The M-125s run above 250k ohms, I think 270k or in that range. A 2.2uF coupling cap will work well for either configuration.

    Tube Nube

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by Tube Nube on Thu Feb 04, 2016 6:36 pm

    Say Dave, did you use electronic cross over(s) ahead of the power amps so as to lighten the frequency range load each amp was dealing with?

    j4570

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by j4570 on Fri Feb 05, 2016 1:59 pm

    In Car audio (I used to do install in the 1980's, and yes I built some "bass" boxes), we nearly always used an electric crossover from the bass (woofers, somewhere 80-120 Hz, I liked 80), to the mid/tweets. My setup had passive crossovers for the midrange/tweeter splitting but I knew people that used 3 way crossovers as well. This was usually done not to lighten the frequency load, but apply the largest amp to woofers which were in the trunk and then the rest of the power could come from a 4 channel amp or 2 two channel amps. It was more of an electrical demand issue. These large systems taxed alternators of the time, we even installed large capacitors on the 12V inputs (.1 to 1 Farad) or distribution block leading to the amps. With 12V supplying power for the amps, it was not uncommon to use 4 gauge wire from the battery to distribution block.

    This is one area I would not have wanted to have a tube amp.......

    Of course I have none of that now.

    Jason

    daveshel

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by daveshel on Fri Feb 05, 2016 2:22 pm

    j4570 wrote:In Car audio (I used to do install in the 1980's, and yes I built some "bass" boxes), we nearly always used an electric crossover from the bass (woofers, somewhere 80-120 Hz, I liked 80), to the mid/tweets.  My setup had passive crossovers for the midrange/tweeter splitting but I knew people that used 3 way crossovers as well.  This was usually done not to lighten the frequency load, but apply the largest amp to woofers which were in the trunk and then the rest of the power could come from a 4 channel amp or 2 two channel amps.  It was more of an electrical demand issue.  These large systems taxed alternators of the time, we even installed large capacitors on the 12V inputs (.1 to 1 Farad) or distribution block leading to the amps.  With 12V supplying power for the amps, it was not uncommon to use 4 gauge wire from the battery to distribution block.  

    This is one area I would not have wanted to have a tube amp.......

    Of course I have none of that now.

    Jason

    I worked in car audio as well. The last system I did for my car, once I had outgrown the super pounding bass thing, used a 4-channel Alpine amp that had a built-in electronic crossover. I bridged two channels crossed over low to drive a single sub in an acoustic-suspension type box. The high channels I used to drive MB Quart separates in the doors. It sounded amazing - like my home stereo. That's the only time I ever used a sub. I don't care all that much for a sub in a home system - I figure you have plenty of room in cabinets for woofers, which you generally don't in a car.

    deepee99

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by deepee99 on Fri Feb 05, 2016 2:42 pm

    Tube Nube wrote:Say Dave, did you use electronic cross over(s) ahead of the power amps so as to lighten the frequency range load each amp was dealing with?
    David, in a sense, yes. The upper-end Vandies have an external electronic xover between the preamp and amps which has DIP switches to select the input impedance of the power amps and is powered by a soldered-in 9-volt battery. When the signal gets to the speaks another 9-volt cross-over separates the high and low and sends the low to the subwoofer module powered by an AB solid-state amp, and why Richard strongly suggests bi-wiring.
    The Tylers are simpler; the full signal from your amp(s) is sent directly to the speaks and frequency-sorted (via selector pot) at the Class D woofer amp from 50 to 150 Hz, no batteries required. Idling, the woofer amps draw 0.1 amps and pull about 1 amp at full tilt. Ty sets his speaks up for bi-wiring but says it's totally unnecessary. I tried both but couldn't hear a difference, so I'm just using a single cable to each of his Decades. Waste of wire, otherwise.
    Either way, your tubes are spared the heavy-lifting required of solid low-frequency effort and you get better sound. The M-125s will drive full-range low-efficiency speakers just fine but low-pass filtering to a separate amp IMHO is the way to go.
    For you car-installer guys, what was that gizmo that turned the car's DC into AC to run the tube radio in my old 1947 Chev? I want to say vibrator, but that would probably offend the PC crowd amongst us.

    daveshel

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by daveshel on Fri Feb 05, 2016 3:41 pm

    deepee99 wrote:
    For you car-installer guys, what was that gizmo that turned the car's DC into AC to run the tube radio in my old 1947 Chev? I want to say vibrator, but that would probably offend the PC crowd amongst us.

    You're exactly right, Dave - the vibrator power supply. I actually met the man who invented it. In the 1980s he was retired and lived in Naples, Florida, where my grandfather lived. Grandpa introduced me to him on the golf course.

    deepee99

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by deepee99 on Fri Feb 05, 2016 4:01 pm

    daveshel wrote:
    deepee99 wrote:
    For you car-installer guys, what was that gizmo that turned the car's DC into AC to run the tube radio in my old 1947 Chev? I want to say vibrator, but that would probably offend the PC crowd amongst us.

    You're exactly right, Dave - the vibrator power supply. I actually met the man who invented it. In the 1980s he was retired and lived in Naples, Florida, where my grandfather lived. Grandpa introduced me to him on the golf course.
    Way cool! I still remember that buzz when the radio was warming up. But it sure worked. I had the reverse of such a gizmo on one of my boats that converted 32VDC to 110VAC. The 32DC-volt bank powered a motor that was physically connected to a 110v alternator. Didn't put out a lot but enough to run a TV or a vacuum cleaner, albeit not at the same time.
    The mines up here use a similar configuration. Their 1,000 hp hoists run on DC to permit electric braking by reversing the polarity, so they pipe 220 VAC off the grid, which powers a motor that turns a DC generator on the same shaft.
    And you dare ask why I can't ever get a stable bias? When one of those babies fires up, the lights go dim.

    j4570

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by j4570 on Fri Feb 05, 2016 4:46 pm

    Most old car radios are fixed by gutting and putting in electronics, but they look perfect outside.....

    But there are the concours types that still fix the tubes.

    I know the sound too, as my father had old cars and the radio had tubes. and we had one of those FM converters underneath.

    And then there were 6V to 12V adapters for cars. those were really fun to install. Inevitably the guy would take it home and try to figure out what you did to make his 12 Realistic tape deck car stereo work in his old car and screw up the "grounding" and his radio wouldn't work. We'd fix it and then tell him, don't mess with it!!!!

    and yes, the MB Quart separates (I even had a pair of seperates that were coaxial but with external crossover and two sets of leads) were great!!!! I had Boston Pro Series separates as well and they were good too (actually I made them into a set of bookshelves for my garage....).

    tubenutr

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    Tubes &Solid State

    Post by tubenutr on Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:30 pm

    Can't bi-amp. I have single driver speakers. But I can say that using SS with these speakers,
    is absolutely grating. I have to listen to music so I use it as back round music.
    When the tube4hifi units are back in, its just euphoric.

    Mike

    corndog71

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by corndog71 on Thu Feb 25, 2016 1:55 pm



    I use my ST120 to power my X-LS Encore monitors while the dual open baffle subwoofers come with their own 370 watt servo-controlled solid state amplifiers.

    daveshel

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by daveshel on Thu Feb 25, 2016 2:06 pm

    Not to change the subject (again), but I've always wondered what role a servo could play in an amplifier. Seems like it's a mechanical device in an electronic milieu.

    corndog71

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by corndog71 on Thu Feb 25, 2016 2:27 pm

    daveshel wrote:Not to change the subject (again), but I've always wondered what role a servo could play in an amplifier. Seems like it's a mechanical device in an electronic milieu.

    Here's the source of the technology. http://www.rythmikaudio.com/index.html

    I use 2 of the GR Research F12 16 Ohm subs with custom matched A370PEQ servo amp. These can be ordered from Danny at http://www.gr-research.com/ (minus cabinets).

    daveshel

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by daveshel on Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:27 pm

    corndog71 wrote:

    Here's the source of the technology. http://www.rythmikaudio.com/index.html

    I use 2 of the GR Research F12 16 Ohm subs with custom matched A370PEQ servo amp.  These can be ordered from Danny at http://www.gr-research.com/ (minus cabinets).

    Very interesting. I'd like to hear that.

    vtshopdog

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by vtshopdog on Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:54 pm

    daveshel wrote:
    corndog71 wrote:

    Here's the source of the technology. http://www.rythmikaudio.com/index.html

    I use 2 of the GR Research F12 16 Ohm subs with custom matched A370PEQ servo amp.  These can be ordered from Danny at http://www.gr-research.com/ (minus cabinets).

    Very interesting. I'd like to hear that.

    Running one of these for last 3 years as well.  My taste is not inclined to big bass and use it mostly to add some "body" to things.  Did a DIY sealed down firing version and it was a fun build with good plans and fairly simple carpentry (well, to a wood nerd anyhow)

    Was generally happy enough with it until about a month ago when I blew a rectifier (disposable Weber!!) in my M125's and started messing with settings while running one of my SS amps.  The Rythmik servo amp has a slew of EQ, damping, phase and filter functions, each setting altering the others and it gets a bit bewildering to integrate with 2 channel system.  To some degree my solution was to run it at a background level, but somehow last month randomly hit a combination that, well, the damn thing is plain magic in my rig now - really happy.  

    As best I can tell Rythmik Audio is something of a one man show (guys name is Brian I think?) and like many here I'm inclined to support little guys.  There is a massive thread on one of the AV sites where he regularly participates, Google can find it for you.

    aguaazul

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by aguaazul on Thu Mar 03, 2016 6:29 pm

    My Bozak Symphony speakers came with a Bi-Amp option. Stock they have jumper wires for the end user to select from the 2 crossovers inside, single or Bi-Amp. Bozak sold an electronic crossover (N-106) that sends the 400hz and below to one amplifier and the higher than 400hz to another amplifier.

    My Preamp(s) are Tube VTA - I have a ZMOD and a TCLA, that feeds the Bozak N-106. The Mids and tweeters are powered by an ST-70 with the VTA board and the 4 - 12" woofers are powered by a Carver A-220 SS Amp. There is a dial on the back to adjust the output. They also have a very High Damping Factor which really helps speaker drivers from 10 > 400hz...

    Tube Nube

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by Tube Nube on Fri Mar 04, 2016 1:48 pm

    I have a pair or the Rythmik sub woofers (good value for money, I think) -- they were a blessing with my old mains that rolled off at about 125 hz. It was a chore setting up the subs, til I got Room EQ Wizard (free software), a suitable mic for measuring sound pressure levels, and an external parametric equalizer (both cheap items).


    deepee99

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    Re: Tubes &Solid State

    Post by deepee99 on Sat Mar 05, 2016 9:04 pm

    Those little panel-mount Class-D switching amps work great for subs and play very well with tubes.
    Ty Lashbrook gets his from Madisound, I think. You could call either of them and get cross-over advice.
    Here's an example: https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.com/keiga-amplifiers/keiga-kg5230-300-watt/
    What I like about them is it puts you in control of the low-pass crossover. I have a pair of slightly larger ones in the Tyler Decades; the pair draws less than one amp running, generate no heat, and will switch automatically into stand-by mode if they don't hear a signal coming from the amps after about 10 minutes. Yes, they're AB but aren't we all?


    Last edited by deepee99 on Sun Mar 06, 2016 8:49 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Clarify things a bit)

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