Google is your friend, a picture of the back panel shows a pre-amp in input. For confirmation, suggest you PM member Trelja, he can probably tell you.
19 responses Add your response
@gmbt2k the Hovland is a honey of a preamplifier. Interested to hear how it compares.
Two questions, if you are willing:
1. What tubes are you running in the DA60?
Jadis components, including the DA60, show as much reflection of the tubes employed as anything on the market. I find it amazing how much more mine provided me once I put that effort into it
2. What sort improvement(s) do you hope for?
Also, if you want to hear, I can lay out what I feel represent the DA60's weaknesses. No matter what people think, EVERY component has flaws
You're not at all far away from the top 12AX7 and 12AU7, so it may not prove worth it to you to run any farther down that road. My personal opinion is that Jadis amplifiers wake up and come alive with the right EL34 tubes. That's something to consider, but you may feel otherwise. Likewise, for whatever reason, I've just never heard the Wilson Sophias sound right. Maybe that's just me? Conversely, the Sasha can melt me down in a puddle, and I think would mate splendidly with the DA60.
Likely, some of aspect the DA60 cannot move forward. Which drove my writing that all components have their flaws. In my opinion, the DA60 has three:
1) It imparts a sweetness / euphony on the music. Something altogether different from warmth or bloat or the syrupy sound you get from products such as Quad ESL63, Conrad Johnson, Pass Labs, etc. that people label "tube-like". I have a pair of sunglasses with blue lenses that just make everything in the world look better, my own sort of "rose colored" glasses. The DA60 does something akin to that, though to a fraction of it in absolute terms. That characteristic makes almost everything sound better, but I must admit it diverges from absolute purity
2) A bit fat / lush in the lower range. It's obviously not lacking in low frequency extension or slam, and few components embody the "iron fist in a velvet glove" more than the DA60. But neither can I deny it also veers from neutrality. Personally, I like that more than not, as the other side of the coin means cold, clinical sound that most, including me, find unpleasant and even irritating
3) It's a tick slow. That's not to say it's slow amplifier. But it's not a fast amplifier, and that becomes noticeable in comparison to some of the very fast amplifiers I've had. The cathode bias gives it a bit more elasticity to the sound as that same topology does for the VOX AC30 compared with a Marshall JTM-50, albeit balanced by the DA60's solid state rectification which is tighter than tube rectification. Of course, the cathode bias does lend that lush and beautiful sound, and the ability to simply and mindlessly plug and play output tubes
Again, I've owned and own an awful lot of amps. There's definite magic I've found in certain 2A3, 300B ($100K Audio Note 300B monoblocks at a show may have produced the absolute best sound I've encountered, but who really knows?), and fixed bias EL34 amplifiers, but top to bottom and left to right, I consider the DA60 the best of all of them, overall
I totally agree on your finding on the DA60. To minimize those issues, I am using the Audioquest Everest speaker cables (pure silver) and a pure silver power cord from Wireworld on the transport, getting good result. I would like more of your input on selecting a set of EL34 which I love to try, but NOS is just very hard to find.
@gmbt2K, thank you for your perspective. That's very smart to employ silver cabling. Coincidentally, I also use a silver power cord as it provides that same sort of flavor you alluded to.
You're also right about NOS EL34. We had a series of tube shootouts at my home in the past. One session dealt with EL34 and KT88. Given the aforementioned plug and play simplicity, we used the DA60, and only waiting a few minutes for the tubes to cool off just a tad slowed us down. We had some newer variants, and they offered what we considered decent sound. But when the vintage Mullard EL34 stepped up, they sounded so far superior from top to bottom, no further discussion took place.
That said, JJ E34L seem to have a special synergy with Jadis amplification, and placed second in our shootout. They're not the last word in low frequencies, but produce a stellar midrange. In fact, on some fixed bias amplifiers, like my Jadis Orchestra Reference, Dynaco ST70, and Quicksilvers, they sound flat out glorious. They don't produce that level of amazement in the DA60, but the overall sound of that amplifier bests the others. Going back to the low frequencies, you can win that back with the right 12AX7 driver tubes in the DA60. So these JJ tubes definitely have my recommendation as something for you to try without breaking the bank. Apart from the vintage Mullards, there are other EL34 I like a lot in other applications, but for the DA60, I won't list them here
Big KT-77 fan here the current reproduction Genalex Gold Lions are outstanding sounding tubes. Beat JJ 6ca7 fat bottles, PSvane Phillips Replicas, Svetlana, Tung Sol reproductions and a few more. Never tried the JJ EL34L and obviously my amp, a custom Deja Vu Audio PP stereo amp, is not a DA60. So as with most things YMMV.
@jond I may not feel quite as positive as you do about the Genalex KT77, but I love your choice in amplifiers!
I had a Deja Vu 45 / 2A3 PP amplifier, and along with my DA60, that was my all-time favorite. As the collection of amps and speakers grew to an admittedly stupid level, I got the directive to liquidate. Still remember that great tone and overall fantastic sound. Aside from that, I came into my Quad ESL57 when Vu also got the directive to liquidate a bit from his director...
@trelja Thanks I love my amp and I've listened to a 45 pp amp from them it was fantastic but I thought a bit too detailed for my setup at the time. I went with the EL34 because it sounds good and it's cheap to retube.
Sounds like you have quite the collection I wish I had the space, and budget, for a collection of amps! And Quad ESL57's what a classic! One of the best things to happen to me as an audiophile is living 15 minutes from Vu's shop!
@gmbt2K Sorry, I don't have a user manual. I also bought my DA60 used, and it had some issues to work through at the time.
To do what you intend, I would think you simply run the preamp through the tape monitor inputs.
If you contact Jadis directly to request the user manual, they seem to respond very well to what I've asked. In fact, Patrick himself has corresponded with me. Please let us know how it goes with them
Wondering if you received a response from Jadis?
On my DA60, beginning in the center of the amplifier and moving through the RCA jacks out toward the end, the first pair is "TAPE OUT", the next pair is "TAPE IN". Not saying you shouldn't wait for the factory's reply, but that second set looks like the safest to try to connect your preamplifier. We CAN exchange photos via email, if you prefer.
Again, curious to hear your impressions of what the Hovland provides and takes away from the overall presentation.