I have one. Amazing sound other than, say, below 60Hz where it kind of flattens out a bit, and it looks absolutely stunning. I would think a tube upgrade would take it up even another notch.
24 responses Add your response
I'm really enjoying the FX10 and the only thing that has bugged me was that the blue LEDs under all the tubes seemed incredibly bright, overwhelming the real glow of the tubes with an unnatural electric blue color and really lighting up the room.
I pulled all the tubes and put two coats of deep red fingernail polish on the tip of each LED in the recessed center of the tube socket. Worked perfectly. It cut down the brightness by about 2/3 so that it matches the orange tube glow much better and changed the color to a soft bluish-purple that looks very much like the glow you get with some tubes.
If you try it, make sure the first coat is completely dry before applying the second or it will turn into a sticky mess, a lesson I learned with doing the same thing to a Peachtree Decco.
I purchased some Sylvania JAN 6BQ5's and put them in my FX10. I am fairly new to tubes, but they don't look the same when the amp is running. On a couple of them I can see some red glow on the plate on one side or the other. It's fairly small. One tube had this glow was much brighter and larger.
Is that normal?
I also bought 2 Telefunkin preamp tubes (12AX7's). they look like the JJ Teslas I took out.
Also mine came upgraded with JJ tubes. The stock EH's are sitting there as back up.
Thanks, Pizzatheorem. Mine came with Electro Harmonix tubes all around.
I've picked up some alternative tubes that I've been really happy with. I traded some nice El-34's from another amp for a selection of vintage RCA and Tung-Sol 12ax7's and some re-issue Tung-Sol's, all of which sound better to me than the stock Electro Harmonix tubes.
I'm running some Russian 6P14P-EV's in place of the EL-84's and those have been a nice surprise. I also picked up a quad of old Brimar El-84's that sound wonderful but I'm saving those for 'special' times, which means I'll probably never get around to using them.
I'm still extremely happy with the FX10. With a MacBook Pro feeding a Nuforce uDAC and on to the FX10, then to the JohnBlue JB3's it's a very satisfying office system.
Sorry, I had it backwards. The stock 12AX7s are TS and the stock EL84s are EH in my new FX10. However, I had a short email conversation with Jolida and Michael said the stock tubes were all EH.
Don't have my system up and running yet, but I too will be playing files from a laptop and through a DAC (HRT Music Streamer II). The speakers will be open baffle speakers with high sensitivity drivers. I may also get a chance to directly compare the FX10 to the 302BRC which should be revealing. I'll report back here if that happens.
I don't have anything to add about the amp itself beyond what I wrote earlier. I use it every day and really enjoy it, have had zero problems. The 6P14P-EV tubes and re-issue TungSol 12AX7's have become the default setup, very quiet and good sounding.
I did replace the Nuforce uDAC between the FX10 and the iMac with an Aune Mini DAC SE and that was a tremendous improvement for not much more money than the uDAC.
Sorry, I can't advise you about a match with your KEF speakers. When I bought the FX10 I did try it in my living room both with a pair of Soliloquy SAT5 monitors and my Devore 8 floorstanders, neither of which is particularly sensitive. The FX10 sounded great with either pair in an 11 x 17 room but I didn't try to drive the speakers very hard.
I am thinking of getting one of these amps and running a pair of Polk RT55's. I have the opportunity to bring my speakers into a local shop 1st to see how they handle the amp. I do not have any tube amps as yet. I was looking at Bob Latino's Dynaco ST120 kit but it cost a lot more that the $499 the Jolida FX-10 is going for albeit not nearly as powerful. Am I going to be sorry? My musical taste vary from the Beatles to NIN and some Dubstep.
Definitely audition them with your speakers. Whether it works for you may also depend on the size of the room. Ten watts isn't a lot but my FX10 has more than enough power in an 11x11' office with a pair of fairly inefficient single-driver speakers. I continue to be amazed at how satisfying the sound is and I've had no problems with the FX10 listening to it several hours a day.
If you're new to tubes the FX10 is a good introduction. The auto-bias feature means you don't have to deal with that for awhile. Some tube amps that aren't auto-bias make it easy to set the bias manually but some are a pain in the ass to deal with.
Another advantage is that upgrades to the EL84 and 12ax7 tubes are relatively inexpensive and the amp does respond well to an upgrade from the stock EH tubes.
I recently sold my Jolida FX10 here on the A'gon. I recommend them highly. I used them in a 14x16 home office with stellar results. Never a problem and to get best results one should use high efficiency speakers (mine were generally Tekton 4.5s and Tekton Lore at times). The other thing is change out the stock Electro Harmonix tubes. I had great success with NOS Russian 7189s, Ei EL84s, TAD EL84s. For the 12ax7 I used NOS Telefunkens, Ei, Mullards as well as a Tubestore Northern Electric NOS with good results. In my room I often had a wall-to-wall stage that was nicely layered, good tone, love the EL 84s, fast and punchy, good enough detail, the little thing was just musical and went as loud as I could tolerate. The bass on the Lore was very good. Tight and lively. This amp plays way above its price point, great 2nd system or first if doing a desktop or just starting out with tubes. Really fun little guy.
I agree with Mikirob that you can have a great time with swapping tubes in the FX10 and that it's possible to make an improvement in the sound of the stock tubes.
If you're not comfortable with navigating the world of NOS tubes by yourself there are some excellent dealers like Jim McShane and others who can give great advice and provide you with tubes that are tested and matched.
Another alternative is to go for some of the best new production tubes like the Gold Lion EL84s and 12ax7s. Buying them from a reputable dealer is recommended there, as well.
While looking for some information about the Jolida FX-10, my google search brought me to this forum and as it turns out, Mikirob was the person that I bought the FX-10 from .
After 5+ years of continuous use, 40-50 hours per week, the amp finally developed a problem. It was at this moment that Jolida really shined. I called them up and spoke with one of their engineers that designs and builds the equipment. After a few minutes of troubleshooting, he had me mail it in for repair. While it was in for repair, i also had them perform a small upgrade (naked Z-foil resistors i believe).
Needless to say, i couldn't be happier with the amp and the people at Jolida. They really love the craft and their shows enthusiasm really shows. I have bought other things from them and will continue to do so.