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Old 5th December 2006, 03:00 AM   #11
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Conclusions:

The TubelabSE could hold its own against the other 2 amps. The SimpleSE with no feedback, KT88's in triode mode sounded almost as good. I would have liked to hear some of the other tubes and a few different transformers. That will happen another day.
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Old 6th December 2006, 01:22 AM   #12
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Thanks tubelab, enjoyed the write-up. Did you get a chance to try the trioded SimpleSE with EH tubes and cathode feedback?
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Old 6th December 2006, 01:29 AM   #13
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No. I didn't get to try that combination. Maybe next time.

I guess the conclusion that I forgot to write up is that what works best for one set of speakers may be a poor combination on another set. This was obvious on Sunday, but there is 20db of efficiency difference in my small speakers and his.
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Old 6th December 2006, 03:53 AM   #14
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What output transformers are featured in that last picture, Tubelab?

-Moose
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Old 6th December 2006, 01:41 PM   #15
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Those are Hammond 1628SEA. They are large, have wall shaking bass on my big speakers and sound pretty good on my small speakers. If you find yourself using a sizeable percentage of your amps power, and have speakers big enough to make use of the bass that the Hammonds can produce, these are a good choice. On my small speakers, I will probably use smaller transformers because the speakers don't make any sound below 70 HZ.

It was noticed by Jose, that the "bass didn't sound quite right" through his speakers. Neither of the other listeners noticed it. It did not stop us from listening to it for most of the afternoon.

We believe that this may be due to the massive size of the OPT's and the fact that they (due to their size) have the most loss of all the transformers that I bench tested a while back. The iron losses tend to be nonlinear due to magnetic hysteresis and other factors. Some of the hysteresis related factors tend to be constant. My normal listening levels are in the 5 to 10 watt range (86db speakers) where the constant effects would be a small percentage of the sound power. The average listening level at Jose's house was probably far less than 1 watt.

How to we test our theory? We repeat the testing using the same amp and a box full of different OPT's. We will get to this, I just don't know when. I never had an opportunity to hear his system before and when we got a combination that sounded good (very good, I might add) we just listened to it!
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Old 6th December 2006, 04:35 PM   #16
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My speakers run an even 90db, so they should be just fine for me. I think I am finally going to splurge and get a pair in a few weeks
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Old 6th December 2006, 05:14 PM   #17
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Make sure that whoever you order them from has the 1628SEA not the older 1628SE. The newer transformers have far better high frequency response. One of the popular Hammond vendors shipped me 3 year old 1628SE's. They said that I could return them, but shipping would be $50. I kept them, and one wound up in a guitar amp, and the other is still on my shelf.
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