the tom evans linear a is a an el84 hybrid. it is rated at 25 watts/channel. i have always thought this would be a great amp for klipschorns. a great amp.
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Well I currently own 3 EL84 amps as follows:
Jolida JD102B - easily the most powerful of the group with manual bias it does an honest 18watts per channel across the audio band. Excellent sound with slightly soft bass but needs the optional JD50 passive preamp for remote control. Currently drives a pair of Sequerra MET7 version I speakers and a sherwood(yes sherwood hey it was free) subwoofer in bedroom system. This amp is one of the best values in audio today at it's $500>$600 price tag.
Cayin MT12a - has built-in remote but only 2 inputs. I use it with a Niles AXP-1 input selector box for additional inputs and about 10 watts per channel cathode bias (no manual adjustment). Beautifully made but somewhat cumbersome to use with again excellent audio but it is obviously less powerful than the Jolida. It currently Drives a pair of Epos ELS3's to good effect with an Atlantic Technology subwoofer.
Luxman SQ-N100 - this is the Rolls Royce of EL84 amps in my opinion. Beautiful construction,numerous inputs, Built-in Phono preamp, tone controls (defeatable), A magnificent headphone output jack and that luxurious feel that using a really well made piece of audio gives you. Easily the most expensive of the group by a factor of 4 times it is the best sounding as it has excellent deep bass even though it to is cathode biased and only rated a 10 watts per channel. This a great amp and I have not even rolled any tubes yet.
So to sum all of the above up the Jolida is a bargain and is closer to the Luxman than it has any right to be considering the price differential. But the Luxman is the best overall as it should be at the price. One amp I have not had the opportunity to hear is the Leben CS300 series which is priced about the same as the Luxman. I have found after auditioning the Almaro that single ended EL84 amps do not have the purity of sound advantage over push-pull designs that they seem to with designs using other output tubes. Finally I use the Russian 6P14P-EP (Sovetek EL84M)output tubes pretty much exclusively with Mullard front end tubes in the Jolida and Cayin. The Sovtek's take a while to burn in 2>3weeks of heavy use but are better than anything other than original Mullards and there is not a clear cut difference even there. The EI's that also were excellent sounding are impossible to find now and they lack the reliability of the Soveteks. It really is difficult to find a bad sounding EL84 I have used in addition to the above JJ's,Electro Harmonix, Mullard Re-Issues and various Chinese(now those were not good). Sorry for the long winded response but the EL84 is tube that offers a lot at reasonable cost to the user.
Tom-hankins,do you have a stingray?this is the one i am looking hard at and will probably buy but there are so many for sale on here all the time it makes me think that people do not like them.I have read as many articals as possible on this integrated,it has the power and the right tube compliment and it is built right here in the US .I did read somewhere that it has a narrow sound band(for lack of a better audiofile name)or field ,Is this true?maybe someone who owns one can chime in before i take the plunge.I have no way to hear one before I buy.The decware looks great but then i am down to 5 or 6 watts which is why i sold the glow,not enough power but very close.This was when I first heard an el84 amp ,what a great sound,i found myself listening to music that I would never bother to,what a suprise,I felt like i have been listening to the wrong amps all my life,I am 53 years young.......many thanks to all who have taken the time to help me out..........
Jerry....thakyou ,that pretty much covers all I need to know and it sounds like you have been down this road for awhile,many thanks,I'm done and you have answered what I needed to know,I looked at the price tag on the luxman SQ-N100,ouch! but you get what you pay for,that said I will go with the jolida 102b at the price they sell for new, I will give Walter a call at underwood hifi and order one today.......again thanyou,I do not see where I could go wrong with this unit for the price...............Pat
Listening in the near field with Klipsch Chorus? I have an early Manley Stingray with 50wpc. They changed the transformers on the later models and decreased the power. I also own a vintage Sherwood S-5000 also uses EL84 type tube with wonderful sound. The Sherwood makes cheap speakers sound expensive. Music Reference RM 10 is very good and Dynaco even made an EL84 amp the ST35, 17.5wpc.
It's been a long time since I have listened to a Scott 222 but I would think that a totally refurbished 222 would compete well with most of the current El84 amps as the transformers were superb and they are the heart of most tube amps. Also be careful what version 222 you have as the Scott 222c version is really a 7189 amp so you are restricted to the EL84m or the Soveteks I mentioned above. As to the Eico I have no experience at all with their products but late 50's /early 60's tube stuff really was well designed as that time period was the zenith of tube product development. I just had Mike Samra rebuild a Mac 1500 receiver for me (he did the electrical and I did the cosmetics) and it sounds incredible so the potential is there but make sure you get someone who knows what they are doing. Also don't go crazy on the modifications or you lose the "soul" of the unit and often the reliability as well. In addition by the time you have an older unit updated (unless you do all the labor yourself) it will cost you the same or more as a new production amp.
The baby is killer- I would a/b it against whatever else you get and make sure the price increase is justifiied. IMO- the baby is just one of those amps that does everything right. It is better than their el34 and I have preffered it to many mentioned above. Spend $100 replacing the tubes and give it a good listen.
I've owned a Stingray for 2 years now and really love it for lots of reasons. I don't know anything about the speakers your using, but I can say that it matches up nicely with my Audio Physic Libra's, not efficient speakers at 86 db, 4 ohms. It drives them with power to spare. The amp is also very flexible with bypass switch, record in/out, all features I use. I have noticed quite a few Stingrays for sale too lately, I've wondered if the reason is because there's a new model out. They weren't always this plentiful. I paid $1300 for mine 2 years ago, I'd have no problem losing 100 bucks if I decided to sell it now, it's worth it. But it would only be to buy a VTL IT-85. BTW, after much experimenting stock tubes work best, Ei's for EL84's, JJ's dont cut it...IMHO
thankyou all for all the great sugestions, i finally found what i think is my perfect el84 amp for the price.....i really wanted a luxman but could not afford that for an office amp and my wife almost made me sleep in the garage for considering it.I looked at the stingrays,RM 10,eicho,jolida and just when i was about to pull the trigger on a jolida i talked to Will Vincent and he sold me one of his personal amps that was an el84,triode wired, 18 watts per channel and just a beautiful amp and design(a highly tweaked version of a dynaco st35 )... and if it does not work out i might find myself owning 2 or 3 like Geraldm121....now to find a pre amp ,either a jusicy music peach or a tad 150,if anyone has a better idea ,i am open for sugestions....again big thankyou to all who responded to help me on my musical quest..........
I found it!!....after all the choices out there i have found the perfect el84 amp for me .I finally called Will Vincient and he sold me one of his personal amps,a triode wired dana st 35 that is only 1 out of 5 he ever made,what a great man to deal with and it arived today,got it up and running(dead silet on klipsch chorus 1's)musical as hell,beautiful workmanship,images like a champ and all that stereo babble,needless to say i will not be looking for another el 84 amp,,,,,,,,,,one very happy audio nut listening to some weather report...ahh music again,,,,,,thanks to all who helped me down this road,special thanks to Geraldm121...thanks brother.....
I now use the RM10 with the Lightspeed Attenuator for volume control, the amp is clearly in the neutral side of things, would not describe it as warm - very fast, resolved and articulate. Fairly powerful for two tubes per side (35 watts). The combo, which is <$2,500 at MSRP is as good as $20,000 combos (CAT, ARC, Joule, LAMM) I have tried with my Merlin VSMs, the only thing I like better is the Atma-sphere/Atma-sphere combo; but I'm not making the mistake of selling my RM10s again:)
I wonder why the Mahi's would be much different that the Stingray, maybe simply being mono and likely to be used with an active preamp whereas the Stingray has a passive attenuator built-in. Either way, Manley does good work with EL84s, but I would personally go the Music Reference route and in mono configuration you could get 70 watts which is a heck of alot of EL84 watts.....