ERYN's TU-8800

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Hi Victor,

I have installed the opts in the TU-8800 and listened to them couple days. Assemble is quite straight forward and I put a thin layer of sorbothane between their bottom and the rack.

It's a huge improvement from the stock opts, like day and night. The stocks ones sound good but kind of muddy & a bit slow; the new ones really improve the clarity, smoothness and response. Overall, they are a must upgrade for this amp. I attached some photos for you.

I have tried a few different tube combinations, so far I like the combination of 5932 and ECC801S the most.

Btw, how is Vancouver, Toronto is essentially stopped and nearly everyone stay home. Hope you and family healthy and safe.



Hi Victor,

Here is my newest feedback, hope not too long-winded:

I have listened to the TU-8600, TU-8800 and Auris Nivana as sole headphone amps for a while, here is my impression:

TU-8600: tubes- power: Erlog 300B; signal NOS: ECC803S La Radiotechnique, Mullard 12AU7/CV4003

TU-8800: tubes- power: 6L6 RCA USA metal jackets, EH EL34 reissued, Genalex KT88 reissued, Brimar 6V6GT, Mullard 6F6GT, Visseaux 6F6GT, 5932 ; signal NOS: E81CC Philips, ECC801S Siemens (Triode mode), upgrades: Lundahl OPTs, Mundorf Supreme Silver Gold Oil caps, Takman carbon resistors, OS-CON capacitors, Nichicon lytic capacitors

Auris Nivana: tubes- power: EH EL34 reissued; signal: ECC82 JJ reissued (both stock tubes), Genalex ECC82/B749 reissued

Files: DSD 512, various Jazz, classical and vocals

Listening experience:

TU-8800: Very pleasant and clear, musical and sweet. Doing very well with jazz and vocals, however highs are a bit less cohesive and a bit heavy and slower in the lower end with stock OPTS. But after upgrades OPTs, there is lots of improvement, clarity, smoothness and response much much better. Overall a great amp with tons of potential and extensive tubes choice.

TU-8600: A wonderful amp with amazing clarity and smoothness, I am not surprise because of its upgrades, OPTs and Erlog tubes. Very good sound stage and its musical and neutral nature is a joy to listen.

Auris Nivana: A very well made amp with separate power supply unit. I only use the 6.3mm headphone for comparison to the other two. This amp sounds really good, same as TU-8600, very pleasant and clean to enjoy, great sound stage. Its mids and lower end a bit powerful and forward than TU-8600, vs TU-8600 sounds cleaner and smoother from mids to highs. It really depends on what kind of music, Nivana's stronger suit is dynamic heavier bass music while TU-8600 sounds better in vocals and highs. Genalex ECC82 seems improve overall image, but I haven't tried any NOS since I have no info of the bias value of the tubes. It will be great if Nivana has speaker output like TU8600/TU-8800 since it's 6.5W output is good enough for many full range drivers.

The experience for these amp are amazing, the first thing is the noise floor, surprisingly TU-8800 has lowest noise floor, Auris Nivana then TU-8600 the last. Certainly Auris Nivana has the best construction and looks among the three.

TU-8600 with all the upgrades put up an honorable head to head level against the much more expensive Nivana. If Nivana swap all the tubes with some nice NOS EL34 and ECC82...(which I haven't tried), it may able to get ahead of TU-8600; but without speaker output make the Nivana a singular function device. However, the new TU-8600S is coming, will there be a chance to overtake the Nivana....who knows?

TU-8800 has a huge improvement after upgrade to the Lundahl OPTs, they really improve the clarity, smoothness and response. As compare to TU-8600, its a bit less warm but seems a bit cleaner; or TU-8600 more sweeter... its like a matter of taste. But its versatility of tube options, Triode/UL options makes one has lots of fun to own this amp :)

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