It's ridiculously good. One of the best.
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I don't own the SE version but I do own the VK-D5 version.
A couple of years ago I was on my quest for my nirvana CDP..
I bought & sold several that by review I had hoped would be
what I was looking for..something to bring my classical music
CD collection as close to real as a digital device possibly could...
I was disappointed in all that I had tried and, in fact, felt
I was taking a step back from the very pleasant and sweet sound of the Jolida.
I took a chance on the BAT and it delivered exactly what
I had been searching for: Sweet yet dynamic...it creates a huge SoundStage not only in width, but in depth, which in my opinion is what classical music needs...beautiful layers
I have not, in these 2 years ever yearned for "Is there something better?"...except maybe wondering if the SE version could possibly be...
So, Larryken, how would you compare your Raysonic with the BAT? I have been considering the VK-D5 SE to mate with my VK-51SE preamp, but I am not convinced it would beat my Lector. I would be interested in hearing about dimensionality; midrange liquidity; bass definition, extension, and drive; dynamics; and top end smoothness.
I owned two versions of the VK-D5SE. The first was the original SE version, the second was the SE version with Super-Pak. Both were very good for redbook playback, IMHO, with the Super-Pak version adding stunning dynamics. I found the Super-Pak version to be the best sounding redbook player that I have heard, granted, I have not heard them all.
However, due to my enjoyment of SACD's, I have since moved on from the BAT's.
I have the BAT VK-D5SE and have always enjoyed it immensely, but, last year I wondered how it might compare with the new latest & greatest (AMR, AR CD7, etc).... I still haven't compared it.
But, I did swap out the 6H30 tubes for 6N6P tubes and the difference was very nice -- smoother more liquid music and eliminated the bass bloat. I also had Hot Rod Mods swap out the clock -- this again made a nice improvement -- clear crisp highs and I get a sense of the whole sound being "faster" -- weird
Anyway, I am quite satisfied now and like I mentioned earlier, I loss the feel of shopping for another CD player again (at least until... - haha)
Grateful, 6N6Ps are not really drop-in replacements for 6H30s, which means that in VK-D5SE they will be working outside of their optimum parameters. You might feel that it sounds better this way, but I am not sure you are right. I spent a lot of time with latest version of D5SE and I absolutely love it!
Does anyone else have experience using 6H6P's in the VK-D5SE?
I recently asked BAT whether the 6H6P (6N6P) tube is compatible in the VK-D5SE. The email answer I got -- not from VK -- was that it is not compatible, and that I needed 6H30 tubes.
This contradicts information posted by VK elsewhere on the internet back in 2002 that, "[t]he 6H6 tube will bias properly in the VK-D5SE circuit and will provide just a tad higher output signal."
In the same post he stated about the 6H6, "plate resistance is about 2.5 time higher, meaning that your CD player output impedance will also go up with this substitude. Whether this matters or not - we shall leave to the reader to decide."
Lukasz Fiskus, who is the designer/builder behind Lampizator, modded many VK-D5's over the last decade. He seems to like the 6H6/6N6 tube. He posted, "[t]he biggest and quickest improvement is over 6H30P - the tube popularized by BAT and its creator mr. Khomenko. He raves that 6H30 is a supertube, but in my opinion it is very coarse, hard and glassy by comparison. I hate 6H30 in circuits which I tried, including my own BAT VK-D5SE cd player. Anyone having BAT gear should immediately give 6H6P a try without any other circuit mods. You will be surprised."
I don't know the degree to which commercial interests are at play. I have heard BAT bought up many 6H30 tubes and I have first-hand experience with some of the great BAT products built around them. Then there's this quote about the 6H6/6N6 tube from VK: "To my knowledge the tube is not in production today, basically rulling it out for use in our new products. But for someone who only needs a few pieces this is a good opportunity."
With the price of 6H30P-DR super tube closing in on $200 each I'm thinking it's time to try the 6H6P/6N6P. I'm just wondering if anyone else has experience before I make the switch. Thanks!