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  • Your Opinions; lets get back to the good stuff.

    I think with all of the things that have happened with various products, companies, people, etc, etc, etc; that we have gotten away from what really made us (really me) fall in love with this hobby; the music and the people who are willing to help and offer insight.

    So, I am now facing a dilemma.

    I think I have pretty much narrowed my current system issues down to the preamplifier. Right now I am using a Mapletree Audio 4ASE that I have taken as far as it can go.

    I put 300 dollar 1950 Sylvania 6SN7W tubes in its output after trying a multitude of others.

    I've upgraded the rectifier tubes. I purchased an upgraded power cable, and even laid down 250 for a fancy upgraded umbilical cable.

    Short of recapping this puppy, I think its pretty safe to say its not performing to my likings.

    I want to upgrade, so here is my issue.

    I have narrowed it down to two preamps; one realistic, and one that is attainable but will take me some time to get it.

    The first preamp is the Dodd. I have the Dodd Phono preamp and love it, but I fear that the Dodd preamp might be too bright and pushed in the upper midrange for my tastes. I want something smooth and warm.

    The second option is the VAC Ren MK3.

    Now, you are thinking, "what a price difference!"

    The thing is, I could probably pick up the Dodd pretty shortly within a few months or so. The VAC will likely take me a year or more to save for.

    So, do I purchase the Dodd now and take my time saving for the VAC; or do I wait the year or so and save all available funds that I can towards purchasing the VAC?

    I keep going back and forth between them...

    I know that VAC has the sound I am looking for; but can I obtain a similar sound with the Dodd via tube rolling??

    At this point I'm not sure what I want to do.

    So, please, this board has been great for decision making before. What's your take?

  • #2
    Would an audition for either be possible?

    I have probably said this before, but I believe upgrading speakers will get you better 'value' ....investing too much into electronics is a dangerous sinkhole.

    That said, it wouldn't cost you much to try out a dodd ref pre....resell it for a small loss if it's not to your liking.

    I've not heard better than my Mapletree Line 2A but I have compared it with an EVS attenuator and I don't notice my MAD unit adding anything bad to the sound.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us."

    -Bill Watterson

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    • #3
      king, is your room "right"? I seem to recall that you maybe had to force the 6s into a space that was a little small. They seem to be placement sensitive to get optimal sound. Not sure I'd be dropping thousands of $ on electronics unless I was very confident that acoustics would support that investment.
      As it turns out, I was never banned. I was wrong yet again. First Obama, now this. :)

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      • #4
        Originally posted by droht
        king, is your room "right"? I seem to recall that you maybe had to force the 6s into a space that was a little small. They seem to be placement sensitive to get optimal sound. Not sure I'd be dropping thousands of $ on electronics unless I was very confident that acoustics would support that investment.
        def..

        1.room
        2.speakers
        3.quality of source
        4.sufficient amp
        .
        .
        .
        .
        5. electronics

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        • #5
          Its definitely the preamp, which, in my experiance (which is limited I will admit), makes the biggest impact next to speakers and room.

          There is a leaness and clinicalness to the sound.

          I've done a pretty good job of maximizing and treating my space, which, incidentally, is about the same size as the room the first time people heard them at RMAF 2007; so they can sound good in this space.

          Also, my issues with my system have followed over from the Rockets; and I doubt anyone would compare the Rockets to the LSs.

          There is a common denominator here that is causing sounds that I do not like, and I am pretty sure its the preamp.

          You couldn't assume both the Rockets and the LSs would interact with the room the same way...

          Nor could you honestly say the Odyessey Stratos Mono Extreme SE+'s I am running are causing the issue, since they have been labeled as neutral in the warm direction...

          Its also not my source since I am using an analog table setup that is pretty well regarded and cost close to 7K (Table, Arm, Cart, Cables, Phono Amp).

          That leaves the 900 dollar preamp, that magically makes 6SN7 tubes sound as dry as possible. :applause:

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          • #6
            Sounds like you have done your homework and have this pretty well thought out. Your first post didn't convey that quite as much I guess.
            As it turns out, I was never banned. I was wrong yet again. First Obama, now this. :)

            Comment


            • #7
              Caveat statement: I am known to be a bad influence on others when it comes to spending money on gear....I am also mildly partial to the sound of VAC gear...

              That said, you can pick up a Dodd used right now and probably get back out of it even in a year, at which point you'll have more dry powder for the VAC....you CAN have it all Chris! :biglaugh:
              "Let the floating wall float" - m-fine

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              • #8
                Originally posted by arthurs
                Caveat statement: I am known to be a bad influence on others when it comes to spending money on gear....I am also mildly partial to the sound of VAC gear...

                That said, you can pick up a Dodd used right now and probably get back out of it even in a year, at which point you'll have more dry powder for the VAC....you CAN have it all Chris! :biglaugh:
                Dry powder? I don't get it... :fryingpan:

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                • #9
                  Agree with what Art said KD.....get the Dodd or other, and put a plan into action to get the VAC.
                  Never Argue With An idiot. They'll Lower You To Their Level And Then Beat You With Experience!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dweekie
                    Dry powder? I don't get it... :fryingpan:
                    more $$$ accrued....
                    "Let the floating wall float" - m-fine

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by arthurs
                      Caveat statement: I am known to be a bad influence on others when it comes to spending money on gear....I am also mildly partial to the sound of VAC gear...

                      That said, you can pick up a Dodd used right now and probably get back out of it even in a year, at which point you'll have more dry powder for the VAC....you CAN have it all Chris! :biglaugh:
                      Oh, I would not say bad influence. Maybe just a facilitator of money transfers. Another positive with respect to the Dodd pre, is you can change tubes out, and make a difference with the sound you may like to have.

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                      • #12
                        The Dodd Battery preamp with a pair of NOS 7308's sounds better to me than my moded Pass Labs Aleph P preamp. It is making very nice music with the Pass Labs Aleph 2 monoblocks driving a pair of Danny's N2X speakers augemented with two powered acoustic suspension bass systems.

                        This is neither tubey or clinical to me. It sounds pretty neutral.

                        I have never heard the VAC preamp as a comparison.
                        Better living through Audio Nirvana!

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                        • #13
                          I'd try the least financially painful route, a used Dodd. That way if it doesn't your desired sonic goal you can resell it without losing your shirt.

                          I'm assuming a bit but it sounds like you have Rockets, have you invested in Ninja x-over upgrades? The reason I say this is that both preamps you mentioned are fine units and could end up showing the limits of the stock Rockets capabilities.
                          Staff writer TONEAudio
                          Founder, Publisher Emeritus Affordable$$Audio

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                          • #14
                            I have had the Dodd for awhile now and would consider it neutral but never bright. It sounds very true to me but is not the choice if you want to add tons of tubiness with your pre amp.

                            Chris

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by MarkMarc
                              I'd try the least financially painful route, a used Dodd. That way if it doesn't your desired sonic goal you can resell it without losing your shirt.

                              I'm assuming a bit but it sounds like you have Rockets, have you invested in Ninja x-over upgrades? The reason I say this is that both preamps you mentioned are fine units and could end up showing the limits of the stock Rockets capabilities.
                              Kingdeez upgraded to the LS6 from the Rockets actually.

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