Aren't the Hornings designed with single ended triode amps in mind. I agree though that moving a lot of air is not easy its a reactive load. The other thing is where that sensitivity is being measured.
I own Klipsch La Scalas which have a ridiculous sensitivity of over 100 Db/W/M. The problem is that all that volume comes from one enormous and loud squaker horn. The 15 inch woofer barely moves Lord knows what the poor tweeter is up to. The measurement must be at something like 1K Hz.
The Horning is designed to be very compatible for SET use. My speakers
have two 10" woofers and when I replaced my 100 watt push pull tube
amp with the Frankensteins there was no problem, the sound improved, a
People who own various Hornings seem to drive them with SET amplifiers
and are happy. I suspect that other amplifier types work well also.lf you
look through the Virtual system section under Horning you'll find a number
of people with lower power SETs driving them.
Never thought to search the Virtual Systems. Thx, Charles.
Marshall Nack reviewed the Horning Agathon Ultimate(this used two 12" woofers per speaker) and he used 5 or 6 different 300b SET amps with comments on all of them. This was in Positive Feedback Online issue # 20. From what he found I don`t think your smaller woofer version Horning would be a problem.
Michael, you may actually own the Perikles Reference, with 2 12" woofers on the rear.
Personally, while I do like this amp a great deal, I would be skeptical of any 300B SET amplifier with these speakers. That said, Jeff normally produces phenomenal (IMO, best of show) sound at the myriad venues he displays, and I think he may have used a 300B(?) based Tron amplifier. Folks have assured me the Border Patrol amplifiers, with their novel choke input power supply could do the job, but when hearing them with smaller woofered loudspeakers, I remain skeptical.
In my experience of living with them, despite the Lowther midrange, these Hornings work best with a surprising amount of power. Nothing against the 300B, as it's certainly a beautiful sounding tube, but I find it too soft on the low-end to get the Hornings to sound right. In my opinion, you need an amp with a pretty stiff bottom end, otherwise, the Hornings come off all wrong. If you don't use an amp that takes control of those woofers, the bass goes MIA, and the overall sound is quite unbalanced.
Best amplifiers I've used with them: 15 wpc Deja Vu push-pull 2A3, a Chinese 30 wpc push-pull transformer coupled 6AS7G, and 60 wpc Jadis DA60. The DA60 might surprise, but the speakers really loved the power, while 30 wpc Jadis DA30 and 40 wpc Jadis Orchestra Reference were not good matches.
Trelja raises a good point and mentions reasonable alternatives. No amplifier does everything (there's always the reality of compromise regardless of what you use). Some 300b SETs have better drive and control than others, High Water Audio demonstrates Hornings with 300b amps sometimes, see what he advises. I could see a DHT push pull being a very viable alternative. I don't know how much Hornings differ from the Coincident speakers in terms of ease of drive. The Frankenstein drives them pretty easily with good bass and woofer control. I've always been curious to hear the Frankenstein with the Hornings, Tonian Lab and the Ocellia speakers.
Charles, I had the pleasure to hear the Musical Affairs Grand Crescendo's in an NYC Apartment. I could be very happy with those.
Swampwalker, I realize this does not answer your question.
No problem, Iso.
To all, right now I am using Doshi-modified Lectron JH-50 (60 wpc 6CA7 push pull). My VAC 30/30 (30 wpc push pull) has a fault so it's temporarily on the sideline. I've been curious to hear what the buzz about the Franks is all about. In NY this spring, I was very impressed w the Dragons driving Israel's top line speaker but those are out of my price range so I thought I might give the Franks a try. Just trying to feed my curiosity/habit w/o going broke.
Do you still have the Wavac MD 300b? I realize it`s approach to power supply and circuit is different from the Frankenstein. It may still give you some idea of compatlbility with the Horning.
My Frankenstein amps have absolutely no problem driving my Coincident Pure Reference speakers with 2- 12 inch woofers per speaker. Every now and then, I will switch out the Franks and plug in my VAC 30/30 but the Franks still rule in my system and to my ears.
Charlesldad- Good idea but the Wavac is long gone (but I do see it still floating around A'gon land, it's distinctive by the dimple on the back of one of the transformer housings). I guess my system page really needs updating. Thx for the thought, tho.
That's the same point I made earlier when comparing the Franks to my
push pull amps(both a 100 watt and a 40 watt amp). Simply no problem
with the Coincident dual woofers. The Horning may or may not be a
different case(could be harder to drive?). Your comparison to the VAC REN
30/30 (excellent amp) speaks volumes of the Frankenstein's considerable
capabilities. The Frankenstein has a very stout/ heavy duty power supply
that may provide drive that some other 300b SET lack, as a possible
Thx for the input Markus. A direct comparison btwn a Ren 30/30 and the Franks is very helpful. Which would you say is better at harmonic structure, timber, tone, conveying the emotional side of the music as opposed to soundstaging, imaging, etc, which are not that important to me. Musical tastes run toward Americana, alt-country, singer songwriter, blues, folk-rock. Tift Merrit to Lyle Lovett to Eddie from Ohio to Bonnie Raitt to Iris Dement to EmmyLou Harris to Mark Knopfler to Ronnie Earl to Stevie Ray Vaughan to Norah Jones to David Grisman to Cindi Lauper.
Swampwalker once you have a good SET amp, I don't think there is any turning back. It's like having tubes for the first time and realizing what they do that solid state does not do and then going to the next step Single Ended. As long as the speaker can be driven no looking back.
Agree with Jwm completely!
He went from the very good push pull VAC Phi 300.1 mono block to his current splendid Absolare Passion Signature 845 PSET and it was an undeniable step upwards (and that's not a put down of the VAC). The SET renders more emotion, involvement and you're just pulled deeper into the music. Swampwalker, the very qualities you inquired about, tone, timbre, harmonic overtones is the strength of a good SET amplifier. Jwm is right, going to SET from push pull (non DHT tubes ) is like moving to push pull tubes from a solid state amplifier. Stuff like sound stage, imaging, spatial information are all included. The key to success is matching the appropriate speakers, otherwise you'll miss what a SET can do in your system.
A DHT tube push pull would definitely be my choice of amplifier if I couldn't utilize the SET. I'm really drawn to the DHT type of tubes.
As far as bass is concerned for acoustic bass I feel you gain texture and the natural bloom that they actually have and maintain very articulation. Depending on the speaker perhaps some slight loss of impact and weight (subtle in my experience). With synthesized and electronica emphasized bass I could concede that type of music would favor more ofen than not higher power PP tube and certainty SS amplifiers. Anything else, give me SET.
The Frankensteins definately excell at conveying the emotional side of the music which was even further enhanced when I switched to the Takatsuki 300B tubes. In my system and to my ears, these amps deliver detail and realism that I have not experienced with any other amp be it solid state or tube based.
Markus one you taste SET you can't go back.