How does this compare to the Psvane 845-T and W nobleman?
You can find these tubes on E-bay. I had a perfectly matched pair shipped directly from the Shuguang factory. They are known as the Nature Series. Tell them that Cary aka WS_trader sent you. They will consider you an adept critical listener.
Be patient, brass instruments start off a little harsh, but mine mellowed out after about 75 hours of break-in time. The proper way to break-in any component is to play a variety of music through it.
As a addicted tube roller, I can tell you that the Raytheon CK-5694s are simply the best 6SN7 GTB variant ever produced.
They are electronically similar to a European ECC32/CV-181,
but this time the American tubes are clearly superior to the European tubes in every single way. I found the Mullards lacking in dynamics with a bloated mid-range, and not much to offer in the bottom end. Fortunately they are relatively easy to re-sell to the uninitiated.
With the Raytheons, it is definitely be careful what you wish for. They reproduce everything on the recording, both good and bad. If you like digital effects, stay away from these tubes. Use a piano passage to be the envy of your friends. These tubes summon you to themselves, once heard, after you convince yourself that you are really hearing what your ears are telling you are hearing, and just as important, not hearing what you don't want to be hearing, you will be addicted. I maintain an interested buyers list and can have both the Shuguang Nature Series 845s and the Raytheon CK-5694s broken in at the same time.
Why did the NOS Raytheons go undiscovered for so long?
They have a non-standard octal pin out, which means using a small and simple adapter, or require a re-wiring of the octal sockets that take these. My 5694s are the first tubes to motivated me to re-wire my sockets. It is also a perfect time to upgrade your sockets. Stay away from new sockets, you want them made out of natural materials, with as little metal as possible.
I just purchased a quad of the Shuguang 300B preimium treasure tubes for my amps to replace the stock tubes and even fresh from the box they sounded much better so when I saw this post, I decided to give these a try also. Again, I had to purchase four but if they are as good as stated I will be happy. I will post my impressions once I get them.
The new 845's arrived yesterday. These are a very impressive looking tubes! They are wider then the 845B's which they replaced and internal construction is simply massive. The Shuguang 845B's were much better then the original stock tubes in my Cary 211AE.After a brief warm up I started listening to some of my favorite familiar music. Right out of the box they were better then their predecessors. There was more detail, individual instruments were spotlighted and the already good soundstage got wider, deeper and taller. Unlike the Shuguang 300B Treasure tubes I just installed, there was no initial sizzle at the top end. The only thing lacking was the very deepest bass. My system will go down in the mid teens with authority but I am sure that as I get more time on the tubes this will come around. If you are running Cary mono blocks these Shuguang tubes paired with the RCA 5691 in the 6SL7 slot & Blackburn EL34 Mullards in the 6CA7 slot will give you the best of the old and new. These new 845T tubes are highly recommended.
I don't know if anybody is still following this thread but I said I would post a followup. I now have about 10% of the 300 break in hours on these tubes and if they are going to get better I got one heck of a deal.The bass has come around & they are definetly better then the Shuguang 845B's which are pretty good.I do a lot of tube rolling on my amps & preamp & the majority of my tubes are WW2 stock but for my 4, 300b's & 845's I have gone top shelf Shuguang. I want performance & reliability at a reasonable price.You get that in spades with these tubes.The 845 nature Series are an absolute steal. Get them while you can!