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The Dynaco Tube Audio Forum

Dedicated to the restoration and preservation of all original Dynaco tube audio equipment - Customer support for Tubes4hifi VTA tube amp and preamp kits and all Dynakitparts.com products


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slate1
thevic24
nmchiefsfan
Brap
ttocs
New2Tubez
ChetJettison
11 posters

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

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    ChetJettison


    Posts : 13
    Join date : 2021-12-03

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by ChetJettison Sun Dec 05, 2021 6:35 pm

    Hello again! I've got a Bob Latino VTA ST-120, currently running Tung-Sol 6550 power tubes. I'm thinking of picking up some other power tubes, just to hear what the difference sounds like. I've heard good things about the Gold Lion KT88 and the Tung-Sol ST120. Any consensus on those two tube varieties for use with the ST120?
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    New2Tubez


    Posts : 123
    Join date : 2018-03-20
    Location : NY

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by New2Tubez Sun Dec 05, 2021 11:14 pm

    I have the same amp and love it. I listen in mostly ultralinear.
    I started with TS6550's and got them over KT88's as the description had said they sounded very balanced and musical whereas the KT88 had more low end. As I was new to tubes (hence my name) and didn't know if I lacked bass, I got the 6550's. I liked them. I've tried EH KT88 and wasn't impressed with these. I never had the GL's as they cost almost as much as the KT120's that I've had for a little over a year. They're like the 6550's but gutsier all around. As they run at nowhere their limit in this amp, they should last a long time too. I got mine from McShane (forum member, no connection). FWIW, they're tall but fit under a dynaco cage with a little bit to spare.

    DavidR likes this post

    ttocs
    ttocs


    Posts : 49
    Join date : 2019-05-20
    Location : Northern Illinois

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by ttocs Fri Dec 10, 2021 12:11 pm

    My amps are M-125, so not exactly what you're looking for in a response, but, I've used Gold Lion KT88 and Tung-Sol KT120 tubes.

    I loved the KT88's and after about 1500 hours I wanted to try the KT120. After about 30 hours the KT120 tubes were a tiny bit brighter, definitely "easier" sounding, more effortless, more comfortable, just as natural sounding, and run cooler. No steps backward, everything is either equal or better.
    Brap
    Brap


    Posts : 171
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 66
    Location : Plainfield, illinois

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by Brap Tue Dec 14, 2021 9:11 am

    GL's have served me well for 7+ years. I run KT-66's. Often thought about getting a quad of 88's but haven't done so yet. Have rolled several driver tubes and really like my 1960's 12AU7 amperex as center and clear top NOS RCA's for the two channels.
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    nmchiefsfan


    Posts : 69
    Join date : 2012-03-21

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by nmchiefsfan Fri Dec 24, 2021 9:47 pm

    I have only run Sov Tec KT-88s and Tung Sol KT-120s. The KT-120s were far superior. I keep meaning to try some GL KT-88s in this amp (running 2 sets of matched quads in my VAC PA160 Mono Blocks) but haven't gotten around to it.
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    thevic24


    Posts : 30
    Join date : 2010-01-31

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by thevic24 Fri Dec 31, 2021 7:14 pm

    Brap wrote:GL's have served me well for 7+ years. I run KT-66's. Often thought about getting a quad of 88's but haven't done so yet. Have rolled several driver tubes and really like my 1960's 12AU7 amperex as center and clear top NOS RCA's for the two channels.
    Are you running KT66's in an ST120?
    Brap
    Brap


    Posts : 171
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 66
    Location : Plainfield, illinois

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by Brap Mon Jan 03, 2022 3:43 pm

    No, running them in an ST-70
    slate1
    slate1


    Posts : 56
    Join date : 2017-07-26

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by slate1 Wed Jan 05, 2022 12:24 pm

    I have not run KT-120's in mine.  For context, I listen to mostly classic rock and hard-bop jazz.  Here's a link to the whole system if you're curious.
    I went through numerous tube combinations but found bliss a few years back with the following and have never looked back.  It's impossible to make recommendations as there are far to many factors (speakers, cables, preamp, etc.) - but I have not touched a thing since 2019 when I settled on this combo:

    - TAD KT88-STR matched quad power
    - Mullard CV4003 driver
    - RCA Cleartop 12AU7 phase inverters
    - Mullard GZ33 rectifier
    - Russian K40-Y PIO coupling caps
    - VTA Auto-bias board

    LeGrace likes this post

    tubes4hifi
    tubes4hifi
    Admin


    Posts : 1729
    Join date : 2008-11-30

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by tubes4hifi Fri Jan 07, 2022 1:43 am

    great question, great answers, and if anyone has tried KT77s or KT90s, I'd like to hear more about them also !
    I don't have much time to do tube rolling, so I depend on the people in this forum and their opinions on all these tubes, thanks
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    rayton


    Posts : 7
    Join date : 2015-10-12

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by rayton Sat Jan 08, 2022 4:35 pm

    KT90 and KT120 are similar, better than KT88. I would pick KT120 instead since the price is almost the same if I plan to use KT120 in other amps. The KT120 is well balance with Jazz and Classical. Just make sure, the PT has enough current for filament since KT120 is 1.95A
    peterh
    peterh


    Posts : 1613
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by peterh Sat Jan 08, 2022 5:11 pm

    rayton wrote:KT90 and KT120 are similar, better than KT88. I would pick KT120 instead since the price is almost the same if I plan to use KT120 in other amps. The KT120 is well balance with Jazz and Classical. Just make sure, the PT has enough current for filament since KT120 is 1.95A
    KT90 ( obsolete ) and KT120 are less linear then KT88. See distance between the curves.
    corndog71
    corndog71


    Posts : 822
    Join date : 2013-03-19
    Location : It can get windy here

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by corndog71 Sat Jan 08, 2022 6:35 pm

    In my ST120 I used Tung-Sol 6550 and thought they sounded great.

    In my M-125s I use TS KT120 which also sound great.

    I haven’t tried Gold Lions but might for my forthcoming ST70.
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    rayton


    Posts : 7
    Join date : 2015-10-12

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

    Post by rayton Sat Jan 08, 2022 7:07 pm

    peterh wrote:
    rayton wrote:KT90 and KT120 are similar, better than KT88. I would pick KT120 instead since the price is almost the same if I plan to use KT120 in other amps. The KT120 is well balance with Jazz and Classical. Just make sure, the PT has enough current for filament since KT120 is 1.95A
    KT90 ( obsolete ) and KT120 are less linear then KT88. See distance between the curves.

    For rock music, I would go with KT88. Somehow the KT120 doesn't sound good with rock but Jazz and Classical are wonderful, the vocal is very clear and sweet.

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    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Empty Re: Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120?

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