The Dynaco Tube Audio Forum

Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.
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


+13
Rbertalotto
buchela
rayton
corndog71
peterh
tubes4hifi
slate1
thevic24
nmchiefsfan
Brap
ttocs
New2Tubez
ChetJettison
17 posters

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

    avatar
    ChetJettison


    Posts : 22
    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?
    avatar
    New2Tubez


    Posts : 147
    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 near 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.


    Last edited by New2Tubez on Fri Mar 18, 2022 1:01 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : clarity)

    DavidR likes this post

    ttocs
    ttocs


    Posts : 59
    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 : 200
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 67
    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.
    avatar
    nmchiefsfan


    Posts : 71
    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.
    avatar
    thevic24


    Posts : 34
    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 : 200
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 67
    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 : 57
    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 : 1779
    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
    avatar
    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 : 1689
    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 : 839
    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.
    avatar
    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.

    slate1 likes this post

    slate1
    slate1


    Posts : 57
    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 Tue Mar 01, 2022 6:03 pm

    rayton wrote:
    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.

    I agree - I rolled a variety of tubes through my ST-120, finally settled on - TAD KT88-STR matched quad power tubes, Mullard CV4003 driver, RCA Cleartop 12AU7 phase inverters, and a Mullard GZ33 rectifier a few years ago and haven't looked back. For context, the rest of my system can be viewed here: SYSTEM and includes a VTA SP-13 preamp and a VTA PH-16x phono stage.

    If you're curious about my music collection, it can be found here: MUSIC
    avatar
    buchela


    Posts : 79
    Join date : 2011-03-09

    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 buchela Wed Mar 02, 2022 12:31 am

    I have identical experience as << ttocs >>, with KT-88 and KT-120, and yes KT-120 sounds better all across top to bottom. Notice, I use the SS weber wz68 rectifier. I have rarely played any rock, but when I had, didn't find anything that I dislike so far. (JBL L-7 towers-with KT-120) and pure silver speaker cables. The human voice rendition is out of this freaking world.
    Follow your ears, if you can't hear what others hear, or vice versa, who cares , it is what you hear that counts.
    avatar
    Rbertalotto


    Posts : 94
    Join date : 2021-02-25

    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 Rbertalotto Thu Mar 03, 2022 9:00 am

    Right now, four matched tubes (Amazon Price), Gold Lion KT88 = $305, Tung-Sol KT-120 = $422......decisions, decision.....
    avatar
    Rbertalotto


    Posts : 94
    Join date : 2021-02-25

    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 Rbertalotto Thu Mar 03, 2022 9:01 am

    I wish there was some kind of "Tube Library" when we could borrow tubes to try......
    Brap
    Brap


    Posts : 200
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 67
    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 Thu Mar 03, 2022 10:03 am

    GL products are currently hard to get FYI. Have a spare set of 66's on order now for over 6 weeks. Using Tube Depot
    avatar
    rebellovw


    Posts : 73
    Join date : 2022-01-23

    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 rebellovw Wed Mar 09, 2022 1:10 pm

    I haven't had good luck with GL - I'd probably go 6550s - but it aways seems a flip of the coin.
    Bob Latino
    Bob Latino
    Admin


    Posts : 3172
    Join date : 2008-11-26
    Location : Massachusetts

    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 Bob Latino Wed Mar 09, 2022 1:50 pm

    Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Nesstone-6550-quad-1

    You might also want to check out newer NessTone output tubes. These are reportedly made in China by Shuguang and are modestly priced. I had one customer last year tell me that he had very good luck with their 6550 output tubes. They also make KT88 and EL34 output tubes Link Below.

    Quad of Nesstone 6550 output tubes

    Bob

    Brandon3212276 likes this post

    avatar
    rebellovw


    Posts : 73
    Join date : 2022-01-23

    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 rebellovw Wed Mar 09, 2022 4:18 pm

    Bob Latino wrote:Gold Lion KT88 vs Tung-Sol 6550 vs Tung-Sol KT120 for use with ST120? Nesstone-6550-quad-1

    You might also want to check out newer NessTone output tubes. These are reportedly made in China by Shuguang and are modestly priced. I had one customer last year tell me that he had very good luck with their 6550 output tubes. They also make KT88 and EL34 output tubes Link Below.

    Quad of Nesstone 6550 output tubes

    Bob

    Wow a quad for 100 bucks - that is awesome.

    tubes4hifi
    tubes4hifi
    Admin


    Posts : 1779
    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 Mar 18, 2022 12:47 pm

    as of yesterday NessTone is also out of all tubes, all buy buttons are disabled
    simpleton
    simpleton


    Posts : 5
    Join date : 2022-01-18

    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 simpleton Mon Mar 21, 2022 4:22 pm

    Just now they show four sets available and prices have risen to 149.99.

    I'll give them a try, so make that three available.
    Brap
    Brap


    Posts : 200
    Join date : 2013-11-28
    Age : 67
    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 Mar 21, 2022 6:06 pm

    It may be less that that available. Got my quad set in today and one didn't light up, 2 buzzes from the left speaker and then the rectifier arced. Shut it all down. Contacted Nesstone and a matched pair is on its way to me. Good thing I've got a few GZ 34's in my inventory.
    avatar
    thevic24


    Posts : 34
    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 Mon Mar 21, 2022 7:54 pm

    i just broke in a new quad of matched Ruby 6550 srt tubes i got as a back up....
    Had a new matched quad of new production Mullard KT88's that absolutely killed it!!!
    In comparison,  the Ruby's are a great tube and prices are right. Bias has been ROCK steady.
    Im running them in my Original ST120 with a NOS 5U4GB.
    For the current state of our hobby.....cant touch them for the price IMO.

    Sponsored content


    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 Sponsored content


      Current date/time is Sat Nov 26, 2022 8:06 am