Anyone using a Decware Torii MK III?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by raferx, Mar 5, 2014.

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  1. raferx

    raferx Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vancouver, Canada
    Has anybody reading this thread gone to tubes then come back to SS?
     
  2. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Not in thirty years or more, a pair of bookshelf speakers in a very different system.
     
  3. Scott222C

    Scott222C Loner, Rebel & Family Man

    Location:
    ÖSTERREICH
    Not me. Never going back.

    Two vintage Scott 222C amps rebuilt by Craig Ostby (NOSValves) here.

    Only downside is the rabbit hole I fell in with tube rolling .................... but it is still more than worth it !
     
  4. seikosha

    seikosha Forum Resident

    FWIW I've got a pair of P3ESR's and for fun one day I hooked them up to my 2 watt SE84 Decware amp and was shocked to see that I was able to get some volume out of the combination. I could get SPL's in the mid 70db range. I can't imagine that the Torii would have any problem whatsoever with them.
     
    raferx likes this.
  5. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    Good golly this thread makes me want a decware amp.

    For those who have one ... is there any reason you need a preamp with the Torii other than the benefit of a remote and more inputs? Also, I'm a little confused as to how the amp can accept source level input and preamp inputs at the same time? Isn't the output level drastically different?
     
  6. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    The Torii could be viewed as an amplifier with a passive preamp attached. So you don't really need an active preamp, you can control volume/gain on the amplifier itself. With a really low level source such as an iPod, you'd probably want an active preamp in front. But with an average source output of 2V or so you're good to go.

    What I find intriguing about using a preamp with the Torii are . . . well several things. One: you find you have to use a very good one, or there will be sonic detriments. My Decware CSP2+ preamps are very good ones. Two: you can "ride the gain" and this can help you tailor the sound of recordings a bit and can be a bit of fun to play around with. My CSP2+ preamps allow input and output gain adjustment which even more amplifies the changes brought about by "riding the gain" (and my PWD Mk II has adjustable output gain as well, essentially has a preamp with digital volume added; I generally run this full bore out). And with a tubed preamp you can roll tubes therefore giving you more flavoring and seasoning options.
     
  7. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Here's a part of the Decware ZStage manual where Steve talks about the process and benefits of "riding the gain":

    RIDING THE GAIN

    A term we came up with because of the active nature of the adjustment process that can take place when you use a ZSTAGE in conjunction with an preamp OR amplifier fitted with a gain control.

    INPUT OUTPUT

    Riding the gain happens when you have two controls. One at the source and one at the amp or preamp. Think of it like water pressure. You have a pipe with a valve at the input end and another valve at the output end. The valves represent the gain controls and the pipe represents the signal path between the two gain gain controls.

    By turning up the input valve and turning the output valve down we create pressure inside the pipe. By turning down (closing) the input valve and turning up (opening) the output valve we reduce pressure inside the pipe. So if you took a garden hose and turned on the faucet you would have lots of water coming out the end, but it wouldn’t be able to spray anything until you put a nozzle on the end. The nozzle acts like a valve to restrict the output causing the pressure in the hose to increase. PRESSURE in this metaphor is the same thing as DYNAMICS in your stereo system.

    FREQUENCY BALANCE

    By having a gain control at the source and a second one at the amp (or preamp) it is possible to manipulate the dynamics of your music and it’s overall frequency balance. For example, if the music sounds thin you can increase the “pressure” by turning down the gain control on the amplifier (or preamp) and then raising the gain control at the source. This will add noticeable weight to the music and mellow out the top end. On the other side, if the music is sounding boomy or thick, you can do the opposite - turn up the gain on the amp and reduce the gain at the source. The boominess will go away.
     
    Done A Ton and raferx like this.
  8. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    Thanks Lonson that was very informative.
     
  9. raferx

    raferx Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vancouver, Canada
    +1
    Thanks man
     
  10. raferx

    raferx Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vancouver, Canada
    Thanks seikosha, good to know, I imagine those massive crossovers in the P3s really gobble up that first watt, nice to know Alan Shaw made them efficient enough for the second watt to get through.
     
  11. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    You're welcome guys. Riding the gain is a lot of fun.
     
  12. beowulf

    beowulf Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chula Vista, CA
    One of the unique things about Steve's Torii design (that doesn't get talked about enough in my opinion) is the fact that it's a Push/Pull design using 2 tubes ... but instead of using those tubes in parallel (as most P/P designs) ~ they are transformer coupled so there is only one tube in the signal path at one time (similar to how a S.E.T. amp works) - thus it has the spank and watts of push pull, but preserves the even-order-harmonic sound and sexiness of a S.E.T. To me this is a big deal as I think S.E.T.'s are among the best sounding amps ever created.
     
  13. Jtycho

    Jtycho Forum Resident

    Location:
    PA
    I have. Currently I have an integrated with a tube preamp section but solid state output. I've gone back and forth between pure tube and pure SS designs. They can both be highly satisfying. Tubes are just sexier.
     
    timind likes this.
  14. Raylinds

    Raylinds Resident Lake Surfer

    Lonson, can you elaborate a little more on these? How is the soundstage? I am seriously considering getting these for my 300B SET amp.
    Thanks
     
  15. jgrillo

    jgrillo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Boston, MA USA
  16. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    Does anyone know whether the Torii would play well with Dynaudio Excite X12's ... small listening space about 10x10.
     
  17. inperson

    inperson Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ohio
    What's the deal with the glass? Did they really need to PS such a thing?
     
    mikeyt likes this.
  18. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Not sure what "PS" means. I think the glass is meant to show you size/scale. Works that way for me.
     
  19. inperson

    inperson Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ohio
    PS=Photo shop. How tall is that glass? They could have put a real glass next to it when they took the picture :D
     
  20. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so


    I looked up the specs which would help people help:

    Nominal impedance: 4 ohms. Sensitivity: 86dB/2.83V/m. Power handling: 150W.

    Awfully inefficient and the fact that it has some sort of "impedance correcting" circuit makes me wonder if that is swallowing some input power. I would think in a small room like this, 10 x 10, the Torii would work, but I'm not entirely sure. A call to Steve Deckert would get you the most accurate response. (He loves to talk on the phone).
     
    KOWHeigel likes this.
  21. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Okay. I'm personally not positive they didn't. Anyway, these shots were done by an outside photography studio for them.
     
  22. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    Thanks. Although these speakers are rated pretty ineffeciently apparently they have an easy impendance curve (or something like that) that make them fairly easy to drive. I currently use a primaluna prologue two which has more than enough power. The primaluna however is around 36 watts where the decware is around 25 watts.
     
  23. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Well, I think it would work. The Torii puts out lots of current. A call to Steve would be the best thing, but if the Primaluna is giving you plenty of power, the Torii should give you enough. . . .
     
  24. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    To answer my own question. I just got a Torii Mk. 2 and it has plenty of power for these speakers in my room.
     
    Lonson, raferx, beowulf and 1 other person like this.
  25. KOWHeigel

    KOWHeigel Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manlius, NY
    Also, although I have done very little listening so far ... my initial impressions are that this is a stunning amp. What has impressed me the most has been the improvement to my digital frontend sound. I greatly prefer vinyl but after a quick listen to some digital, color me impressed.

    I only got the chance to spin two records but I noticed better instrument separation and a fuller / lusher sound. The lushness might be attributable to the use of EL34's vs. 6550's in my primaluna, but the instrument separation is remarkable. I didn't think an amp could make that much of a difference in that realm. Initially I am chalking it up to the dual mono design.

    More thoughts later, after I really get to do some serious listening.
     
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