Dr. John, are the CV-181's the alternative to the 6SN7 input tubes that come in Kevin's amps? I swapped out the two input tubes on my Phi 200 mono amps with those tubes and the amp sounds fantastic. I did try the Psvane KT-88's but feel the KT-88-SC that are stock sound just as good to me so I kept the Psvane's as back ups. On the 200's the only thing I am changing out is the two 6SN7s for the CV-181s and saving the money and buying the SC version KT-88's from Kevin who does a good job of matching and assuring quality. Both models are built in the same factory as the Psvane; Shiguang (sp?) in China. I use the Psvane 12AX7's in my Signature phono stage and find them to be slightly quieter than the stock tubes.
I've been considering their new design, Psvane KT88 TII and am curious of the differences you observed while listening to the two?
I have some reissue Gold Lions coming in to try and have heard from many that they are great tubes if matched correctly but we shall see how they compare after about 100 hours of burn-in...
I have been experimenting with Psvane 12AX7 in my Vac amp in position V01/02 and 4. With Psvane in pos 1&2, you will get a deeper soundstage, super black background and more transparency but will lose some bloom and a more forward soundstage that the stock 12AX7 provide.
The Psvane in pos V04 provides the best compromise with the bloom of the stock tubes but with more transparency, lower floor noise better placement of image with the soundstage...
Still debating the Psvane KT88 TII...
sorry for the delay in replying. Yes the CV-181's replace Kevin's stock maroon-based 6SN7's and blow them away-not cheap for tubes of their type, but worth every penny. Psvane now produces a TII version of the 88's with a gray coating and I've read with some credence that an all-Psvane complement creates an effect greater than the sum of its parts. Kevin's stock SC's are no slouch, but then we always want more, don't we ?
Thanks for your reply. I'm using the new Black Treasure KTZ made by Shuguang and have heard the Psvane T-II are better but with reliability issues...
I've tried Psvane T2's (KT88 and cv181z's) in my phi 200's and they were good, certainly better than the stock. I've played around with a number of combos - including and my favorite (so far) is GoldLion KT88's and NOS RCA 6SN7's (they have a gray color).
IMHO - the stock tubs are absolute rubbish.
i have been using the 181's by shuguang and think they are pretty good but my phi mono's 200 sound better with some of the old stock that i have acquired,i also agree that kevin does a great of tubes that he sells
Another vote for Psvane 12AX7 T-IIs...a design unique to them seemingly (extra spacer?) and a sweet, stable, full range sound. Been burning a pair for a while and love 'em.
The Psvane TII's arrived super-promptly from Hong Kong today, thankfully sans tacky 'gift boxes.'
Right out of the box, their midrange is luscious, highs a bit chiming and raw, bass still undefined. Quiet as all hell but not yet transparent. Leading transients are soft. Not much dynamics but musicality lurks beneath the surface. Supposed to take 150-300 hours.
My power tubes are the Psvane CV-181-T's, thoroughly broken in. I can't wait to hear what the full complement of Psvane sounds like in the Phi.
Anyone know already ?
I've read that small signal tubes takes 50-75 hours of burn-in but if they require 300 hours I'm going to put them back in for another 100 hours and reevaluate.
My observations so far are they have a wonderful midrange but my stock Chinese 12AX7 have more zing and body but we'll see after another 100 hours if that's required.
Listening to them open is at once frustrating and rewarding.
I've yet to identify a sonic signature for the full complement of Psvane's, but I can say at this point that they are very refined. Refined and correct. Maybe that's a function of the whole being greater than the sum of the parts.
ECM live recordings of Schiff's Beethoven cycle are a pretty reliable benchmark for piano sound. But for finesse, try Kissin's version of Glinka's 'The Lark'; the Psvane's handle its upper octaves with breathtaking ease.
After a few months of burn-in, how's the all-Psvane tube complement sounding in your VAC?
I'm thinking about rolling the 6SN7 tubes in my 300.1a, looking for a little more body and warmth without sacrificing the crystalline clarity of the stock VAC tubes. Suggestions, anyone?
I've retracted my Psvane endorsement as one of my 12Ax7TII tubes failed and made me sad. It will take a while to recover.
i used treasure tubes from shuguang in my vac 450 and did better with the shuguang sc from kevin