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Old 30th May 2003, 04:57 PM   #1
ICARE is offline ICARE  France
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I need HELP for builing a nice stereo tube amp: Really good quality but not really expensive, around 1000 dolars

Can you give me links, realisation, price, etc....etc.....for building it.

Im looking for something not too difficult to realize with a really good sound and nice looking.

Thanks in advance.


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Old 30th May 2003, 05:34 PM   #2
Joel is offline Joel  United States
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$1,000 is a lot of money.
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Old 30th May 2003, 05:51 PM   #3
EC8010 is offline EC8010  United Kingdom
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Default We need more information...

$1000 is a lot of money if you have a basic engineering knowledge and are able to salvage electronic components and can make your own chassis, but just need a little guidance on how to best do it.

On the other hand, if you mean, "Which is the best kit for $1000," then it won't buy you quite as much.

Do you have religious principles about single-ended vs push-pull? Are you happy to bu a second-hand amplifier and modify it? Does it have to look so good that photographs of it could be published in magazines that have to be kept on the top shelf? How much power? Does it need a pre-amplifier, or will a power amplifier with volume control and selector switch do?
The loudspeaker: The only commercial Hi-Fi item where a disproportionate part of the budget isn't spent on the box. And the one where it would make a difference...
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Old 30th May 2003, 11:36 PM   #4
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$1,000 is a lot of money.
Joel, may I please ask you to refrain from commenting on monetary aspects?

From where I stand it's just none of our/your business how much a person is willing to spend on a project...

If you feel it's too much than at least propose an alternative path that coincides with what the threadstarter has in mind.

In Europe, and I'm sure as in other parts of the world it is as well, we often want a quality of finish that has not only a high WAF factor but fulfills all of our audio needs as well.

In other words we look at music as art not just as an object.

No offense at your personal work, just something to keep in mind.

Thank you,
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Old 31st May 2003, 03:43 AM   #5
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if you want you could try building a pp amp. BUt se is much easy to deal with. I built 5 amps so far 2 were pp 1 was se 2 were pre. I can easily say se is easier for the begineer just the power factor
i design and built my own pp el34 you can have a look at
but it involves alot of parts to make it work
most of the supplies are regulated from driver, heater to negative voltage bias. Good thing is the drivers are direct coupled to the output tube.
I think you should check out angela website. I seen a se el34. which is simple and easy to built plus part are not that expensive. El34 cause around 28 dollars per match pair compared to higher for other tubes.
For a kit check out diyhifisupply i think, they stock their billies(300b se) and ella amp (el34 pp). Billies is slighty expansive due to 300b but the ella amp is around 526 dollars without tubes plus el34 and 6sn7 tubes are cheap. Billie is around 800 dollars without tubes. Tubes cause a bomb. 300b especially, 5u4g and 6sl7 .
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Old 31st May 2003, 06:45 AM   #6
SHiFTY is offline SHiFTY  New Zealand
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I have found single ended triodes with a good output transformer sound fantastic. You might want to look at a 300B kitset, 8W per channel of pure triode power. This doesn't sound like much, but it is. Single ended triode amps are probably the nicest sounding amps you can get. (me waits for flames )

You can build a great sounding amp for $1000, thats for sure. Lots of options.
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Old 31st May 2003, 08:39 AM   #7
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Originally posted by ShiFtY
Single ended triode amps are probably the nicest sounding amps you can get. (me waits for flames )
I'm glad you think so but it's far from a universal truth. There are many extraordinary PP designs out there that can equal or better a SET in the mids, have much better top and bottom, lower distortion (esp IM), less reactivity to load etc, and are to my ears (if not everyones) far more musically enjoyable than any SET I've ever heard. Most people's experience with PP revolves around bad Williamson or Mullard circuits, which is only a subset of possible designs. It's also easier to find better used OPTs for the same money as a lot of new SET designs which adds some options. As does the usually double power that a PP will give for a similar implementation, which is a big advantage fror those with less efficient speakers.

No flame, merely different opinion.

You can build a great sounding amp for $1000, thats for sure. Lots of options.
Yes, and better suggestions can be made with the answers to EC's questions above, as well as,
- how efficient are your speaks?
- how loud do you play?
- what's your level of skill in electronics?
- what type of music do you listen to most?

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Old 31st May 2003, 05:04 PM   #8
316a is offline 316a  England
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Default Speakers

I'm with Brett , SE triode topologies are not always the best . It may be advisable to go with something that suits the available speakers . Bass reflex speakers for example don't seem to work very well with zero feedback SE amps . SE 2A3 amps require sensitive speakers and so on . Push pull designs on the other hand can provide more power and better driving capabilities for the price . Consider the amp and speakers as a system on their own... get my drift ?

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Old 31st May 2003, 06:06 PM   #9
dhaen is offline dhaen  Europe
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People are attracted to SET for the simplicity of the circuitry.
This makes it more approachable, though not normally cheaper.

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Old 31st May 2003, 08:12 PM   #10
Morse is offline Morse  United States
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Hi 316a;

>>>...Bass reflex speakers for example don't seem to work very well with zero feedback SE amps . SE 2A3 amps require sensitive speakers and so on...<<<

Please take no offence, but IMHO it's really an overgeneralisation to say that zero NFB SET's don't work well with BR speakers. I'm using Fostex 164's in BR alignment cabs with my 2A3 SET; I've also successfully used Radio Shack 40-1354's in BR cabs and a pair of ancient EPI 100's with that same 4 watt amp.

IMHO the things that determine whether or not a set of speakers will work well with a low powered SET are the crossover (less is better and no crossover at all is the very best) and the efficiency - 89dB SPL for moderate SPL's in a small room and about 94+SPL for higher volumes in larger quarters. Fullrange speakers with 89+dB SPL really do seem okay with low powered SET's in my personal experience at moderate levels. SOME 2 way speakers with a single cap on the tweeter are okay if a little limited in dynamics.

Anyway, you're very right that it's best to match the topology of amp to the speakers. Moderate to high efficiency combined with a simple crossover is the key to making the flea amp perform it's best.

All the best,
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