FTP-Full Tube Preamplifier

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1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 4.50 out of 5)
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Well, after reviewing couple of tubes here, I decided to go for a tube audio preamplifier I have recently acquired. And it isn’t the ordinary one but as its name suggests, full-tube based from the power supply to the gain stage with zero feedback made in strictly point-point technique. Chassis is carefully made from steel and zinc-plated before painting. Front plate is engraved in brass, highly polished, nickel plated.

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H.H Scott LK-150 Power Amplifier

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (11 votes, average: 4.55 out of 5)
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I think I’m in loooove. First of all the amp looks incredible – the transformers are something of a miracle in the amp – they are bigger than in MC 275 and the lartest I’ve seen in KT88 amp. Just look at the picture and compare them with the size of KT88 and you will understand everything. When I got it, I had to replace all caps. Didn’t go all the way on the couple capacitors, I settled with fairly cheap Solen fast caps and was not expecting an incredible performance from the amp, but the moment I turned it on and started to listen to music, I just couldn’t stop – it puts MC 275 to shame in a few areas.

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Bellari HA540 Headphone Amplifier

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (10 votes, average: 3.50 out of 5)
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And now another headphone amp review. I got Bellari because it’s the only headphone amp out there that uses 12ax7 and thus 5751 tubes. So I was excited that I would be able to use my favorite Telefunken, Mazda or Sylvania GB with it. I got the amp really quickly from Amazon ($3 next day shipping with Prime rules!)

This review is going to be very short… I got the amp, yanked out the Shuguang tube – garbage. The first thing I’ve noticed that power supply was puny – 150ma I believe. I was wondering how that little thing could provide enough power to drive filament and the amp at the same time – but it did. I inserted Mazda 12ax7 with Silver Plates – plug my Sennhisers HD650 – lighted a cigar and turned on an album by Diana Panton. The first thing that I’ve noticed, the sound was quite flat and not much airiness to it. I tried both inputs, but with the same results. But what the hell, I had a good cigar. I continued listening for about 30 more minutes and when the cigar was done, I went to try a different tube – I thought that maybe the amp just doesn’t like Mazda. I plugged in Amperex and discovered that only one channel was working. I plugged back Mazda and then Shuguang, but the amp was dead. 🙁

So a very short review – broken amp (awesome return policy with Amazon) – and a sound that didn’t excite senses even with a fantastic tube.