Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Jeremy Bunting, Mar 26, 2019.
Robert, this is amazing advice. Thank you.
HiFi Guy - Thank you. I’m definitely in the 0-10 hour state of mind. Duo - enough said. I have the 20/20 as well for evaluation and it is definitely way better than the KC Vibe, not even close. However I have physical constraints with the form factor for the 20/20 and Insight, and the KC Vibe might stay back. I also noticed that Upscale shipped the PL with the atrached phono stage. Interesting although It will most likely not be used.
Unless you asked and paid for the phono stage, it's unlikely to be there. The chassis extension underneath is there so that the phone stage can easily be installed, but it's an option.
Welcome aboard, Kubidemon. I purchased my EVO 300 integrated last Novemeber and have been quite happy with it. As others have mentioned, there is a break-in period. I've been recently comparing it against my Yamaha A-S3000 integrated (solid state) and have been wanting more detail from the PL in comparison to the Yamaha. When I upgraded my interconnect and power cables over the weekend, however, I noticed a significant jump in detail and dynamics which gave me an awesome, new perspective on the PL. I know that might seem obvious to some, but to the extent possible, do try to invest in the best cables you can as they will make a difference.
thank you OC Zed! This is an excellent forum. Great advice on the quality of interconnects and power cables.
Also, upgrading the tubes makes a big difference and you don’t have to spend a mint on NOS either.
Yes, absolutely! I've been saving that upgrade for next year... I've come to enjoy each stage of my system tweaking so far so I want to just enjoy the process over time. I also want to get a butcher block isolation platform for the amp which I think should help too.
When you mention detail and such, are you playing mostly vinyl or streaming etc.?
Could an upgraded phonostage help with that if it is related to vinyl?
I know you are comparing it to the Yamaha so all things being equal and such...and my question is kind of bizarre but do you think maybe a preamp adjustment would help in your case...saying you didn't get the cable upgrade?
BTW....I totally get the cable upgrade. I have a turntable that I swapped the interconnect cable out on and it was immediate opening up of the soundstage and the efficiency in my mind of the speakers meaning I could play them at a lower volume and still have that WOW factor.
Anyways....your comment has me a bit nervous because I really want to get into the 300 or 400 from my NAD solid state.
We spend about 95% of our time streaming with some occasional use of our turntable. I never considered using a separate preamp with the PL as integrated amps are really optimized for the pre and power amp sections to be housed together.
Although I have not heard your NAD amp, I would not fret over the PL as there is still plenty of detail with the stock tubes and cheap cables. Now that doesn’t mean the PL a slouch. I only mentioned the Yamaha as a point of reference, as that amplifier can have truly exceptional resolution. And, of course, you still get that rounded, warm tube sound from the PL
Try one out to see for yourself.
If I may ask the most un-audiophile question ever... How are you folk keeping this thing dusted!
Maybe it's just where I live but my Ego 300 Integrated is developing a thin layer of dust on the flat surface underneath the cage where the tubes poke through and I'm looking at it wondering how I can clean it in a way that is guaranteed not to damage or dislodge anything. Anyone got a killer solution?
It would be nice to have a plexi glass cover in the tube area to make it look presentable when not use.
Since mine is in a personal music room, I just put a towel on top of the tube stage when its all cooled off. then take it off when running. Its not gonna be covered it all the time but at least it will minimize the dust effect. I did that with my other amp. its been 7 years now and it still looks new. been doing the same on the primaluna.
To clean: compress air canister with brush carefully.
To Maintain: Same procedure I mentioned before. I only did the compress air cleaning and brushing twice in a span of 7 years. My amp doesn't even have a swirl mark like its still new from the box. But I have recorded running it 32,000 hrs.
I use those two on my evo 400 (when amp is totally cool / been off overnight and power cable disconnected from back of amp) :
Small brown brush - gently dust over power tubes and in & around 12AU7 tubes / top plate and over output trafo case / connectors on back.
Multicolour wand - very gently pull through between power tubes - wand parallel on top plate and pull left to right (across the width) .
I also use the muticolour wand on my phono pre / rack and the small brush on my turntable.
Works for me.
I agree with @HiFi Guy the Primalunas take a very long time to break in from new. When I got my Dialogue Premium HP, there was a gradual improvement in sound over about a year and then one day this full tube midrange glory just seemed to switch on. It was remarkable.
Also, with your Focals you should definitely try the 4 ohm taps. Going from the 8 to 4 ohm taps made an enormous differerence in frequency response with my B&Ws.
Congrats on the new gear. The DPHP (and I am sure the Evo 400) is a truly incredible amp. I absolutely love mine.
Outstanding. Thank you EM. I read about (in the manual) and heard from Upscale on trying out the 4 ohm tap. I will definitely try it out shortly!
For my speakers the 4 ohm tap shifted the frequency respose downward, bringing the tone into perfect balance.
It tamed the highs and brought out the missing bass, all while keeping a rich midrange. It was a huge difference with my speakers.
72-hour report - listening to the PL evo 400 integrated on the 4 ohm tap is starting to become an experience on its own. I’m still amazed at how the sound is evolving daily. With my modest Focal 936s, the sheer musicality is making me miss the MF M6si less and less. Based on feedback from Robert, OC Zed, HiFi Guy, and EM - I really cannot wait to hear what this thing will sound like in a few months.
Couple of things that are truly amazing already - the quality of music at low volumes is unreal. With the true analog volume control - there is no loss of fidelity or bass response even at the 7-8 o’ clock setting. After the 9 o’ clock setting the amp starts to show it’s true colors ... Primo!
Your analogy was actually great, thanks for your perspective. I’m a complete noob when it comes to tube amps (tube noob?) but I’m convinced it’s going to be the next piece of hardware I buy. Very interesting on the Yamaha/PL presentation differences. I do appreciate punch and a larger than life soundstage, but the PL sounds like it could be more endearing. I wonder if the Evo 400 has a larger soundstage compared to the 300?
I basically came here to ask that below.
We are very much on the same quest Taiyedbrodel.
Please keep me up-to-date on whatever you do PL oriented and I will do the same.
I don’t have experience with the 400, unfortunately.
I get the tone/detail & soundstage predicament... we faced it ourselves. Ultimately, we just gave in, decided to keep both the tube and solid state, and built two different systems to scratch each itch. LOL
I’ve got the Dialogue HP integrated. The one downside to the 400 is it’ll cost twice as much to re tube when that time comes.
Will do! Journey has begun.
Jealous!! If only I had the wallet to pull that off all at once. My approach thus far has been basically getting one component at a time, but going all-in on whatever it is. Instead of doing incremental upgrades across my whole set-up, I’d rather get the best possible [insert amp, turntable, cartridge, cables, power source, etc] for what I think will be “it” for my system for hopefully several long years.
By the way since you mentioned it, what specific cables and interconnects did you upgrade your PL with? My local guy swears by Transparent cables.
That’s a good point. However with the auto-bias feature aren’t you essentially just replacing single tubes one at a time and not all at once? Of course if you’re referring to tube rolling as a choice for experimentation, I could definitely see that getting expensive real quick esp on the Evo 400 (or your HP Integrated) haha
All of my cables (interconnects, power, speaker, ethernet, etc.) are within the Audioquest family. Other manufacturers are great, but I decided to stay with Audioquest throughout based on selection, availability and overall coherent system synergies. I can tell you specifics if you're interested, but it's obviously system (and budget) dependent for each setup.
This primaluna is so good as far as a standard all around amp. I been listening to this in 2 months straight and the sound is just phenomenal. It just kicks so hard especially if I use my cassette deck.
I'm gonna give this guy a break and listen to my other small tube amp just for kicks and giggles.!
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