The comparisons with solid state are made only in the area of noise floor. They are uncanny in that they are very quiet for a tube amplifier. I would tend to agree with the musicality description, and would say they lean a tad to the warm side. It also depends which tube amp of theirs you are talking about.
Bat makes solid state and tube amps. All of their amps have a wonderful midrange that's warm and inviting. That said, the solid state amps are pretty good on the extremes...the tube amps more life and wetness to the sounnd.
The newwe 75SE and 150SE tube amps put together the best of solid state, ie. bass control with out sacrificing their like and wetness in the mids. Extention and warmth on top killer as well.
It really depends on which bat amp your curious about, the speakers you have, the rest of the system. That dictates whether they are a great match. Pretty much anyone will say they are good.
I've owned a VK200 (ss), a vk60 (tube) and currently a vk75se (tube) so I have some first hand experience here.
I'm looking at their new VK-55. Needless to say, the VK-75 is also interesting but it is over my budget. Speakers are Hyperions.
BTW, a friend said their amps are a touch warm but lean? THis friend owns a CJ premier 11a. Any comments?
The first two comments are on the money, imho.
FWIW, would be interesting to see opinions on how the 55 compares to the 75 and the 75se.
My nickle on BAT, fwiw, is that they provide great customer service and a very well built product and are a pleasure to deal with, but they don't push the envelop on price to performance. The 55 may be an exception though, I've yet to hear it.
It has been my experience that in the case of the 51se and the 150se mono-block amps that they certainly compete and push the envelop in the price to performance category. I haven't heard the VK55 yet either. Good luck Eps in finding what sounds good to you and enjoy the search.
mind out of the gutter, young man! :-)
mind out of the gutter!.... :-)
Trcnetmsncom - Hi Tom. Coming back to me with a different perspective on price to performance is fair and appropriate. My guess is that perceived value has a lot to do with how well a product matches our preferences and personal taste. Happy Listening!
The BAT sound is not like ARC or CJ or Jadis.
BAT is clear, focussed, smooth, tight, fast and articulate.
no blooming or any kind of fuzziness here.
they are dead quiet dependable and have no tube rolling needed nor do they ask for tube replacement every year.
Yes you could say that if you crave for all the good things a truly great SS amp offers, BUT you want naturallness and emotional involvement to go with it then my friend, you have found your kind of amp.
i own 51Se D5Se P-10Se 75Se 250Bp and summed up there is no hiss or whatever tube anomaly experienced anytime.
I find the house sound of BAT all along the line, and i would be pretty surprised if you experienced something different soundwise when choosing the Vk-55 and VK-3iX as an example.
Furthermore the BAT remote control is so darn good you ask yourself how you ever could spend say 8000 dollar on a preamp which did not offer this convenience.
Build quality is top notch, and i say this as a former aerospace quality inspector and engineer.
every bolt and nut is rustfree steel, every soldering spot is flawless.
What i find truly exceptional is that they inhibit Triode, Class A , no negative feedback, AND sound clear and tight and serve the music in a sparkling and authorative way.
The only amp i have experienced as supreme in the midrange compared to the 75SE is the LAMM 18 watt Triode ML-1.
Yes i'm one helluva BAT afficionado.
Balanced operation Rules.
I don't have a BAT amp, but still wanted to chime in regarding the BAT 'house sound'. While I was waiting to receive a new VK51se from BAT, I as getting buyers remorse when I started reading threads about BAT having a 'dark' sound.. I didn't know what that meant.. to me it implied 'veiled' or unnatural. I'm waiting for a new cd player, and only have 20 hours on the 51se, I'd rather reserve comment on its sound until it's broken in. But I will say, even brand new I sure don't hear anything 'dark'. I had a dehavilland tube preamp and didn't think it could get much better, but the BAT is in a whole different league in my opinion,(which I guess it should be at @ 3x the cost). I'm hearing things in cd's I didn't know were there. The build quality of the 51se is 10/10 and I was sold after talking to Steve and Victor at BAT. Even out of the box, the 51se sure cured any buyers remorse.
Just you wait, it gets a heck of a lot better. 300 hrs or so and it really opens up and shows its magic! Are you using a BAT tube amp also? I'm one of the lucky ones who has 51se pre-amp and the 150se mono-amps. Over the years I have heard a lot of the competition and I have to say I will be a BAT customer for life. I must add they are great people also.
Sorry Classical1. I have to stop posting at 3am. I should of asked what amp are you using?
Tom - I'm using an Ayre V-5xe. It has less than 200 hrs on it. Purist audio design Venustas speaker cable and have ordered Venustas interconnects. I ordered an Ayre C-5xe cd player-hopefully here next week, so I've got some breaking in to do. I would like to hear the BAT amps someday (especially tube). I was going to go all Ayre but wanted tubes somewhere in the chain. After reading the TAS review of the 51se, where Shane Buettner compared it to the Ayre K-1x the reviewer felt you couldn't go wrong with either, but in the end was "won over by that slightly richer palette from the tubes in the 51se".. I'm happy with my choice and the BAT matches very well with the Ayre amp.
Classical1 congrd`s on your purchase,like Tom said I to would like to say you won`t be dissapointed. I have a 3 pc`s of BAT 51se,75se,p5 w/ a six pack upgrade. I put the 51se into a SS system and went WOW. Added the 75se and went WOW again, they are both keepers. The good thing is their resale, if you don`t like the 51se you wont take a huge hit if you do sell.David
Love my 51SE/75SE combo. It seems most BAT owners end up with entire BAT systems.
And thanks to Tom for steering me straight! Have not questioned the move once.
Keith in LA
My progression over 6 years was 3i pre, 500 ss amp, D5se cdp, 5i pre, and recently 75se amp. Like Keith said, I progressed to all BAT and I'm loving it.
House sound? I don't think so, but I haven't listened to the 60. I went to tubes after hearing an old Dynaco; it sounded "tubey". The 75se does not sound "tubey", just natural, palpable, and substantial. It does the frequency extremes very well (imho). Also, it looks really cool.