First and last Integrated tube amp. not much $$$.

I'm about to purchase my first tube amp and my budget is very tight. These are the amplifiers I'm considering:

Cayin TA-30 $849.00-(all BizzyBee mods, plus 1 Year of service) Paul of BizzyBeeis a Cayin U.S. dealer. Preamp out is included.

Conrad Johnson CAV-50: roughly $1,300.00 used. Preamp out is

Dec Ware SE 34-I $1,600 new, plus $195.00. Preamp out is included. subwoofer.

I have enough money to purchase the Cayin now. My question is
whether I should go for the Cayin, or save, till I can afford the other amps mentioned? BTW it would take me some time to save enough money to buy the other amps mentioned. Other amp suggestions are welcomed.

My system:
Klipsch Heresy's (1977) $500 new and unfinished Mom's Warehouse/ Colonie, NY

Conrad Johnson Dv-2b Tubed CD player. $995.00 used on Audiogon.

Rega Planar 3/ RB 300/ Rega Elys. $500.00 used on Audiogon.

Lehman Black Cube/ standard power supply. $325.00 used on

Hsu VTF-2. $500.00 new.

Should I go for the Cayin, and, enjoy the magic of tubes, now? Or, should I begin saving enough money to step up to the other amps mentioned? How much of a step up would it be? Auto-biasing is a requirement because, I have Carpal Tunnel in both hands. I also
need 4 inputs, and, one preamp output ,for the Hsu subwoofer.

As you know, the Klipsch Heresy's lower end needs to be augmented with a sub. I'm pretty happy with the Hsu, although, this
is my first subwoofer.

In terms of power requirements: Cayin TA-30- 35 watts per channel in EL- 34 push pull pentode. 4 watts in S.E. mode

Conrad Johnson Cav-50- EL-34- 40 or 45 watts (not sure) push pull pentode.

Dec Ware SE -34I - EL-34 - 7 watts Zen triode and many different
sound signatures available.

Will I be missing another audio plateau by settling on a push pull amp?. My listening room is roughly 13 1/2 x 16.

Speakers are 4 feet apart.

Back wall distance is 1 1/2 feet.

Speaker to listening seat distance is 6 1/2 feet.

Speaker to side wall distance is 4 feet.

Ceiling height is 9 feet. Tin Ceiling and wood floors.

Listening position is at extreme of back wall.

I listen to Classical, Opera, Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country, World Music, and everything in between.

I want faithful music reproduction , and, enough power to rock out
without distortion.



Showing 2 responses by reubent


I own a stock Cayin TA-30 and I have a fully upgraded unit arriving from Bizzy Bee on Wednesday. The stock unit is a great value and I'm hoping the upgraded unit is the answer to all of my audio dreams! If you want a review of the upgraded unit, send me an e-mail through AudiogoN in a few days. HOWEVER, the Cayin IS NOT self-biasing. The upgraded unit has EXTERNAL BIAS test points and pots, but you still need to be able to use a DVM and a small screwdriver.



I received the upgaded Cayin yesterday. It sounds great right out of the box and even smoothed out a bit during the first 3 hour listening session. I'm pretty sure the upgrade is a good value over the stock unit.

My listening room is 249 sq ft, but only 7ft ceilings (basement). In p-p mode, the amp is WAY loud at 9:30-10:00 and in SE mode it is WAY loud at about 11:00. I think it will have plenty of volume for your application.

BTW, "tin ceilings and wood floors"? Do you live in an old home? I live in an 1880 Victorian myself. Beautiful wood floors throughout and tin ceiling in the kithcen. Love the solid marble Italian fireplaces!!! Will be building a new home next year. I'll miss the details of the current home. But, no way can I afford to buy new Solid Italian marble fireplaces!!!

Oh, misical preference is everything, but I don't listen to much large scale classical. Mostly jazz, Americana, singer/songwriter, chamber. I did rock out last night with the Cayin! It was very good!!!