Rogue Owners Unite

Hello Rogue Owners. The goal of this thread is to let Rogue owners discuss the tubes they have tried in their amps/preams and discuss other tweeks that have been implemented with success. It would also be nice if you'd post your system components to help us compare notes.
i have rogue 120 monos (stock). i have upgraded the tubes to nos rca's and tunsol 6550's. i recommend replacing the 12ax7 with a good nos tube. i had never heard the amps before and when i bought them....they sounded average. changing the ax7 made them into new amps. the tunsol 6550s (a matched octet) brought them to a even more musical level.

assoc equip. joule la 150 with opus m5 phono. merlin vsm-m speakers; vpi hw19-fr64 arm - shelter 501m2se cart. birdland oden lite dac; pioneer trans. mac 67 tuner; richard gray ps and all diy cables (super cables cookbook).

good idea on the post
Well I guess I should let you know what I've done over here.

I have the Rogue Magnum Tempest Integrated Amp. The Magnum version comes with all Electro-Harmonix tubes. I have changed the 12AX7's to NOS Mullard CV4004's and tried a QUAD of the NOS Phillips 12AU7's. My amp is still breaking in so it is hard to make a final decision on the NOS Phillips so soon. I do like the improvement that the NOS Mullards gave (was quite obvious). I also recently upgraded all my cables, which are still breaking in, so that is another variable. The first couple of weeks with this amp, the highs were quite edgy, but it has recently opened up. Can I bridge this integrated with a non Magnum version of the Rogue 88 Power amp?

Associated Equipment

EAD Ultradisk 2000 CD Player
Cliffhanger Audio CHS-2 W2 Speakers
Magnum Dynalab Etude 2001 Tuner
Rogue Magnum Integrated Amp
Virtual Dynamics Reference and Audition Cabling
Welcome Rogue lovers!My 99 came with NOS G.E. 6SN7 line stage tubes.The phono with NOS Jan Phillips 12AU7's and Sovtek LPS 12AX7'sI found the Sovtek 12AX7's a bit bright with some low level tube rush.Being the 12AX7's are in the first 2 positions in the phono stage I wanted quieter tubes.I bought a single Tungsram super low noise for the first position.This is a very quiet and sweet sounding tube. At this point I had tube neurosis so I ordered a pair of matched Telefunken 12AX7's and a pair of matched,"preferred stock" Radiotechnique 12AU7's.This combination was recommended by Kevin Deal.I now have the sound I was lookng for.A very quiet noise floor and a sweet but very detailed sound.The bass from these Telefunkens is very,very good also.Mark O. sent me some NOS Russian 6SN7's to try out in the line stage.I think I prefer the G.E.'s but its close.RELATED GEAR:Grado Platinum 4.5mV moving iron cartridgeRega Planar-25 T.T./RB-600 Tonearm1.5 meter Harmonic Technology Pro-Silway MKIIPass Labs Aleph-3 30wpc single ended Class A Bias.M.I.T. T-2 8 foot Bi-Wire/BananasParadigm Studio Reference 80's 92 dB 8ohmRega Planet CDP (old style)Adcom GFT 1A tuner 1 meter Alpha Core Micro Purl Silver.5 Meter Kimber P.B.J.Bright Star Audio Big Rock Home Brew amp stand/50LBS GraniteHome Brew RackBlack Diamond Racing Cones #4'sJ.A. Mitchell Tender FeetVibra-PodsRoom TreatmentsAttica Correctional Faciltiy Ceramic Skull(sits next to amp) I found a very big improvement in bass with the addition of the B.D.R.Cones under the 99I filled the 99 power supply with sand which lowered the noise floor even more.Just drill a hole in the side,fill and cork.This is a great thread!D-Ninty-Nine
Own a 66 preamp (non-magnum but thinking of getting the upgrade...). Changed the 2 linestage tubes (12AU7) to Mullard CV-4003 tubes with much success - better resolution and more warmth (bloom???). Rest of the system is: modded 333ES cdp > Rogue 66 > Bryston 4B-ST > Tyler Taylo Ref Monitors.
Nice thread idea. I've got a 99 Magnum, but I've only had it for a couple of weeks now and haven't had the opportunity (or the inclination) to do much in the way of tweaking it yet. I've heard a lot about filling the power supply, and will likely be interested in trying it out in the future, though the noise floor is already pretty darn low (aside from some negligible tube rush). Where have folks had the best luck drilling the hole to fill it? How big of a hole are we talking about? I am pretty sure that I've seen more detailed instructions someplace, I just can't recall where now. I did order some vibrapods earlier this week and am hoping to experiment with them this weekend. Also haven't felt the need to experiment with new tubes yet, though I'm sure I will down the road (I'm new to the 6SN7's, so they're virgin territory for me). Anyone tried tube dampeners of any sort? The simplified version of the rest of the system is a Meridain 508.24, the Rogue 99 Magnum, Bryston 4b-st, and Thiel 2.3's with Homegrown Super Silver IC's and Kimber Monocle XL cables. I have noticed that the 99 is super-sensitive to vibration and interaction with other gear, (or other remotes, for that matter) -- no mystery why they took the power supply off-board here. All told, I'm a serious Rogue convert and can't yet imagine wanting to improve a thing (not that this means for a second that I'm about to stop trying...;)
H Mezmo- I drilled the hole on the side down from the Rogue Logo.You dont need a large hole.Just big enough to fit the tip of a small funnel in it.Make sure you take the power suppy cover off before you drill.I found a rubber cork at the hardware store.I put J.A.Mitchell Tenderfeet under it and some weight on top of it.I treat the power suppy very seriously.Some Rogue power supplies hum a bit and the sand ends it fast.Makes it run cooler too.I noticed a quieter background with the sand.Good luck with your 99!!
Thanks, David, sounds like a snap. I'll likely wait until upgrade fever hits me again and then pull the sand trick as a relatively painless way of keeping the upgrade deamons satiated for a spell (they do tend to come in waves). First off, my room is desperately in need of some fine tuning, but that's another story....
David99, my power supply is humming a bit. But I don't want to be drilling holes into it because I think this would pretty much void my warranty and decrease resale value. It sounds quite good now and the hum is barely audible, so I think I can live without it. But if I decide to keep it for the long haul this might be an option. Can I do any other tweaks that aren't so invasive?
I bought a stock Rogue 99 pre right before Christmas. I have not changed a thing yet, and am really not in much of a hurry to. (yet) I do have some NOS 12au7 and 12ax7's from Upscale Audio from my prior pre, and I will probably swap them into the phono section at some point,but as I said, I'm really loving this thing right out of the box. I'm glad this thread got started, as I'm anxious to hear what improvements can be made. Also, I am using a 7 m. IC between pre/power with no problems at all. I do have a question for owners of the 99: Has anyone noticed a difference between running the gain low and the volume high vs.full gain and less volume? Rest of system: Mccormack DNA 1 , Rega Planar 25/rb600/ rega exact: Rotel951/MSB Link II: PSB Stratus Gold, vibrapods, Brightstar bigfoot, home made sandbox, ...
Yea, Winoguy17, that's a good question. At first I was keeping the gain at its lowest setting in order to get a little more travel out of the volume knob, but at times it sounded like the bass was a little bloated, or possibly just over-accentuated, at lower volumes this way, so I've been leaving the gain at dead even instead. I didn't test this one out too critically, and it was fairly early on and very impressionistic (besides just not making a whole lot of sense, logically), but I'd be interested to hear whether anyone else has found that the gain setting has an effect on the overall balance of the sound. (That said, the system has been changing a lot lately, so my impressionistic read on this one could have actually been attributable to a whole host of other variables as well).
Buckingham, regarding the "sandbox" fix for a humming power supply, that one was officially dreampt up and/or approved by the guys at Rogue. It might be worth giving them a call to see what their take on it is, but I believe that they have actually encouraged folks to do it in the past, in which case it may not affect the warranty at all. Worth asking, I guess.
Two questions:
1-Can I change the gain setting on the Rogue Tempest Magnum?
2- If Yes then how?
I own m-120s and added a used 99 about 9 months ago. I wasn't particularly fond of the 99 at first. Mark at Rogue recommended changing the Penta Labs 6sn7s for the NOS Russians. That did it. Much better, I then moved to the 120's, I added Electro Harmonix 6550's and my next addition is a set of Mullard cv4004 (12ax7)'s . It go a bit better. The best tweak so far has been the replacement of the stock power cords to Virtual Dynamics power3's. Whoa !
Mark is now drilling holes in the power supplies and inc.a cork with them.The sand is up to you.
It wont void the warranty.Ask him if ya dont believe me.Re-sale shouldnt be a problem.Unless the buyer doesnt want a cheap tweak included!!
I have the 99 Magnum and 120 Magnum. The 99 has Philips 5814A tubes (?) in the output amplification stage and 12AX7 Sovtek in the the critical part of the first gain stage (on the left looking from the front of the unit) and a 12AX7 GE in the other slot. My 6SN7GT tubes have no other markings. I do not know what this means or who made them.
My 120's have Polish 12AX7, Hewlett Packard 5963 (Japan), and Electro Harmonix 650EH (Russia) tubes.
All are stock tubes (from the factory).
I have a Rega CD2000, Linn LP12/Rega 300B/Grado Sonata 4.5mv, and Magneplaner 1.6QR's all connected with Nordost Blue Heaven IC's and speaker wire.
lush bottom end (pretty defined a little thick)
a little suckout in the mids,
a slight glare in the high end and a little bright and thin for my taste,
the sum is a very detailed and coherent sound with a neutral quality that has pretty lush harmonics. The tone on horns can be very nice but piano sounds a little thin for my taste. There is quite a bit of dynamic range. The speaker rolls off in the high end (some people think it is not detailed, I disagree) the sound is a little closed in as a result in my opinion.
I would like more definition in the bass and a warmer midrange with smoother high end.
Can anyone tell me the best tubes to replace?
What are the Philips 5814 tubes?
Should I replace the 12AX7s?
Any ideas what the 6SN7s are?

Sorry I do not have tips or answers for anyone else.
I will probably call Kevin Deal as well.

thank you, it is good to know there are others who appreciate Mark O'Brien and Mark Walker at Rogue who have been like best friends to deal with and make a very quality product.
This is a follow up to the last post. I forgot, I have a lot of tube rush in my phono section which make it almost unplayable. What is the best fix?

Thanks again
Excellent, all I need now is a drill!
David, the power supply in the Tempest is not external. Does this apply to the Tempest power supply also?
I would think that the 6SN7's are GE. The Magnum 99 has upgraded NOS tubes and GE are more readily available 6SN7's for NOS.
When I bought my 99 they came with Penta Labs 6SN7 tubes.
I had ordered the Rogue with NOS 6SN7's and I was curious as to what they really were.
I called Penta Labs and talked to a really rude guy.
He would only tell me they are Penta.
"are these tubes NOS and if so what are they"?
"they are Penta Lab tubes"
"I know they are Penta Lab tubes but you didnt make them.Can you tell me who did"?
"they are Penta Lab tubes"
I called Mark and he said they are G.E.'s
I now have some NOS Russian 6SN7's Mark sent me.
I feel they are very close to the G.E.'s but I like the G.E.'s a bit better.They are slightly more detailed.
Im putting the G.E.'s back in this weekend.
Buckingham- I dont think the sand tweak would apply to your Tempest.Check with Mark to be sure.
Philjolet-That Sovtek 12AX7 is your problem.Get a very low noise NOS for that position in your phono stage.
Try a Tungsram SLN=super low noise.This is one quiet AND sweet sounding tube!!
Philjolet-those Phillips are 12AU7's and decent tubes.
Ask Mark what your 6SN7's are.He'd know.
I just got a Rogue 99 Magnum two days ago. I didn't even check to see what tubes were in it. I know they are supposed to be NOS of some kind. I've only had a chance to listen for a few hours. so far I've found it to have a slightly veiled, closed in sound with a rolled off high end. Can I expect things to open up in due time? I have it running with a McCormack DNA 125, Arcam 92, Dynaudio 72's and Acoustic Zen cables. Thanks for any advice.
Has anyone gone from the stock Rogue 66 lsr to the Magnum version and with what results? Would I benefit more going from a 66 to the 99 or upgrading my 66 to the Magnum version?
Bradz, if you have the money go with the 99, if not the magnum upgrade is very good. It is better than a stock 66 in all areas, you can use a number of different tubes after you done the mod to the 66. the tube I use is the E80cc, if you use this tube be sure to let Mark know so he can mod it to use that tube, you will never go back to a 12au7 after you hear it. Greg
Would the Magnum 66 be comparable to a stock 99 or is it like comparing apples to oranges? Also, how would you describe the change in sound going from the 12au7 to the E80cc tube and which unit do you have Greg? Thanks in advance. Brad
Greg, I haven't been able to find the E80cc tube anywhere.
Is it available anywhere?
Has anyone done the magnum upgrade to an 88 amp? How did it compare to the stock 88?
Buckingham: E80CC is not a direct replacement for 12AU7. They often come up on Ebay offered by sellers in Europe. I am looking into modifying a Pilot 232 power amp to run one in place of it's 12AU7, hoping that it will flesh out the tone a bit (make an EL84 amp sound more like an EL34 amp:-). The E80CC uses the same pin out (I think) and it is taller than a 12AU7.
Bradz, the tube can be bought at the tube store, and Dekay is right ,its not a direct replacement, but you can use it in the 66 after you have Mark change the fuse out on the line stage. If you don`t do this it will blow the fuse after a few days, and you will end up changing it . The sound of the unit with the tube in it is awesome , the bass is tighter the mids are about the same ,the top end is extended. the tube also sounded to me more transparant. It also has more gain, the dynamics are much better. You will like the Magnum 66 on its on , but that tube is very good, another tube to try is the 7316, I have not tried it , but the word is, this is a good tube as well. Do the Mod and you`ll like the unit much better.
Bradz , also the unit I have is a Magnum 66, and it does not sound as good to me as a stock 99, very close , but no cigar. The 66 Magnum is a very good pre-amp, much better than most of the others out there, it just not going to keep up with the 99, and if you do the magnum on the 99 , well you right back to the begining, the stock 99 will sound way better than a stock 66, same goes for the Magnums too. I have the 88 ,but I don`t have the magnum of that unit , so I can`t say much on it, I `m going to do it soon.
Drumsgreg, so if I was to upgrade my 66 to the Magnum version and with the mod you mentioned to use the other tube, would the cost be $250. or more? I've been pretty happy with my 66 so far and haven't done any tube rolling so, I think the upgrade to the Magnum 66 instead of going to a 99 would cost less and worth a try. I noticed on your sales feedback that you use to have Maggies and sold them to someone. Did you happen to have the 1.6qr? I'm using:Cary 303/100 cdp->Coincident cst ic.->Rogue 66 stock->Coincident cst ic.->Odyssey Stratos w/ cap upgrade->AP Oval 9 biwired->Magnepan 1.6qr. I've also considered adding a Rel sub with the maggies and think that it might be a better upgrade than going from the 66 to a 99. What would you think?
Nice thread, all Greek to me right now, but I'm getting a pair of M120 Magnums to replace the defunct Spectron M2 so it'll eventually all make sense.
Let's see how this tube thing goes...

Brad ,I did in fact have the Maggies and they were very good speaker, they didn`t fit the room as well as I wanted {WAF}, you what I mean,plus the low end was not what I wanted either. I sold them and bought Innersound Isis, these are great speakers .I have them also on Audiogon too, to pay upcomming taxes, but have found the money to pay it , so maybe I won`t have to sell them.Now the upgrade will cost $250 I`m sure Mark will do the fuse for you while its up the for the Magnum mod, the tubes will set you back about $30 to $40.The next thing I`m going to do is buy the Zero autotransfomer to help drive my speakers with the Rogue amp, the amp should sound a whole lot better driving a high impedence load than a low one, I`ll let you all know how this turns out. Don`t buy the sub yet, this autofomer may help the bass alot. Greg
KP, as I recall you use Von Schweikerts. The M120 Magnums sound great with my VR5. Think you're in for a treat. Just be careful taking them out of the box - they each weigh 2-3 times a Spectron.
That's right Grandpad. Glad to hear your combo works well. I'm really looking forward to these behemoths.

I converted a stock 88 to a Magnum 88. It turned into a new amp. Besides being more extended and detailed (by quite a bit) It was also much more robust and dynamic. (Something I should make clear was my old 88 needed tubes before I upgraded it.) Still it was a smashing success. The best time to upgrade is when you need tubes (if Rogue puts in the tubes you want to live with - mine came with Electro Harmonex 6550s.)
Philojet, thanks for the reply. I shipped out the 88 today to have the Magnum upgrade done. Is there any burn-in time recommended after having done the Magnum upgrade?
Philojet, I would think so because most of the major parts are upgraded.... Give it a week or two to fully open up.
Mine sounded much better (more like the same amp top to bottom [cohesive?]) after about 2-3 weeks of 6 hour days.
I predict happiness in your future.
Grandpad, they do sound great with the VR's!

Drumsgreg...Have you had a chance to hear the zero auto transformer yet and would I benefit even though I'm using a ss amp(Odyssey Stratos w/ cap upgrade)? Also, is their a website for the zero auto transformer?
Brad , these came today, I will say these work , I have not yet use all the different taps yet to find out which one works the best with my set up, these work by changing the impedance of the speaker so the amp will work better, so far the sound is better bass { controlled } mids are better than before, treble sounds clearer to me but the same. I will not be able to get to all the different taps in a few days it might take a few weeks,but these do work. the web site is zeroimpedance .com I will keep you up to date as much as I can about this Zero thing . Greg
Thanks for the reply Drumsgreg. I went to the site and wasn't able to find the price for the zero autotransformer. How do you think they would make a difference in my system and how much do they cost for a pair? Thanks in advance. Bradz
Glad to hear it Killerpiglet, now you get to drive yourself crazy with tube-rolling, as you can see from this thread. One of these days I'm going to call Mark and ask him what his favorite combination is.

It never ends!
Brad , They cost 383 a pair , these are sounding very good today ,I`m still in the 2x tap, I `m going to try the 2.75x tap later today, you can call Paul and talk to him more about the Zero`s, I will say this if you have a low impedance speaker , you need the Zero`s with any amp SS OR TUBE OR OTL`S its is giving me sound that is well better than I`d hope for. you can e-mail me here
oh, insanity, thy name is audio!

how many of you leave your tubes on all the time? how much tube life do you give up by doing this?

how can I tell a tube is going bad? and if it's a tube in the amp or in the pre?

has anyone tried biamp (2 mono's per side?)

Brad ,I wanted to get back to you about whats going on with the Zero`s in my system, Shit this is great . The amps seem to like the 2.75x taps on the Zero`s driving my Innersound Isis , the speakers already had great imaging ,but now there even better. The resolution is much better as well, I`ve heard more from this setup than I have ever heard before, small details are now much easier hear. You don`t have to strain to hear them, dynamics are much better as well. I have played the drums for 35 plus years, and they sound more real , more like the wood that they are. The drums have more of there own space between them than before, all the instruments now are easier to follow and each has its own place in the sound field. the bass tighten up alot, pitch is better on the lower end than before. I beleive you should look in to these as and up grade to your present system, mine are keepers. Greg
Glad to hear Drumsgreg that you like your zero's! Would I benefit more though by changing my current Odyssey Stratos amp(around 150 w/4 ohm) and going with something like the Innersound esl amp(600w/4ohm) instead of the zero's? For a little more $, I could buy a used Innersound with much more power and sell my Odyssey. What do you think? Also, if the zero's were in my system, would I not use my speaker cables?Thanks in advance for any response!
Brad , I don`t know what kind of speakers you have, so I would not know if the Innersound amp would be better. The Zero`s will reduce power in a solid state amp if you set it up to drive 16 ohms, the whole purpose was to get the amp to see an much easier load from the speaker to the amp. The Rogue sounded better driving my Innersounds at 11 ohms instead of the 4ohms taps. I talked to Mark about these and he wants me to send him the web site so he can look into it.