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Integrated tube amp questions

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Togo, Mar 25, 2002.

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  1. Togo

    Togo Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Middlesex UK
    Hello all,

    What sort of used price would you say is fair for a good quality integrated tube amp for a budget system ($1,000-$1500)?

    Any particular brands you'd recommend?

    Just interested for future reference.
     
  2. Paul L.

    Paul L. New Member

    Location:
    Earth
    Hi Togo,
    Do you want to go vintage or with a new piece just slightly used? How much power do you need?
     
  3. Togo

    Togo Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Middlesex UK
    Hi Paul,

    I'm a novice when it comes to tube amps...so any suggestions welcome for power or vintage options.

    I currently have an Arcam Alpha 3 integrated amp (40 watts per channel) and Linn Index speakers. These support a Pioneer DV626 (CD/DVD player) total cost around $1,400 for the 3 components.

    I'm thinking about future upgrades (I'd have to save some money first!)...I could go down the tube amp route or opt to improve by other means.
     
  4. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    Sagamore Beach, Ma
    Get a used Adcom (yeah!) or Rotel pre, so you can handle all your equipment madness (like DVD, CD, etc) especially if it's lots of stuff.

    Then, choose your tuby Amp weapon. You could go with Paramours by Bottlehead (if you have fairly efficiant speakers) a Dynaco ST-70 or a Mk III, if and when you can find em cheep. Lots of older amps that do well. You can do well for under $1500, but you realize you might be going after the more popular older amps.

    Depends. What do you have for speakers? How large is your listening area? What music do you usually listen to?
     
  5. Togo

    Togo Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Middlesex UK
    Thanks ScKott - advice gratefully received...

    My Linn Index II speakers are on good quality stands and handle most types of music well...which is good because I have a very broad range of tastes.

    I listen to anything from jazz, blues, classical or pop, to rock and soul...from Bing Crosby through PJ Harvey via Marvin Gaye, Prokofiev and the Pixies to U2, Elvis Costello and Bjork mixing it with John Coltrane and Miles...rounded off by XTC and Julian Cope...with a pinch of the Beatles, King Elvis, Bob Marley, Hendrix and the Doors...PHEW!!!

    I'll have to get the tape measure out for the listening area, but it is a small-medium sized living room (around 12 feet wide by 10 feet deep)
     
  6. Paul L.

    Paul L. New Member

    Location:
    Earth
    Togo,

    Looks like your speakers are 86dB with one watt at one meter. You're not going to be able to get them loud enough with a low powered tube amp, so you have to rule out something like the Paramours.

    Since you're in the UK, it would be a bit more trouble for you to get vintage US stuff. Otherwise I'd recommend you look at Eico, Fisher, Scott, or Sckott's favorite: Dynaco. You could get some really nice stuff in the mid-hundreds of dollars.

    I'm not sure what vintage UK brands there were, other than Leak.

    But I think there are a number of UK companies that make new tube equipment. (Check out World Audio Design, for one.) Some of them offer kits, but it all depends on whether you want to electrocute yourself or not. No, only kidding. Some people are good at assembling kits and some people
    aren't.

    A great place with about a million tube links is at

    http://www.worldtubeaudio.com/index.htm

    The guy who maintains the site will build kits for you for a very reasonable price. He's a hundred times more knowledgeable than I am, so why not email him for some advice.
     
  7. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    Sagamore Beach, Ma
    Paul's advice is worth looking into. Sorry for not realizing you're in the UK. Would be 10X more difficult finding an antique American amplifier in the UK! Not to mention the big voltage differences. Good Luck!
     
  8. Togo

    Togo Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Middlesex UK
    Paul/Sckott,

    I really appreciate your help...thanks.

    I will do my research and get that savings plan going!

    Cheers Guys.
     
  9. mazort

    mazort New Member

    Location:
    San Antone
    Tube amps

    Since you're in the UK, I think you should check out the British Audio Note tube amps, which are made in Hove by Peter Qvortrup's company.

    It is a well-established company that makes some great amps in all price ranges. They also make kits, so if you are handy with a soldering iron you can save some money.

    I have three pieces of Audio Note tube separates (two preamps and a power amp) that I'm very happy with.

    If you ever see an Audio Research CA-50 integrated at a good price, I think a lot of that one, too.

    Good luck.
     
  10. Togo

    Togo Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Middlesex UK
    Re: Tube amps

    Thanks Mazort...advice gratefully received and certainly worth looking into.;)
     
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