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Mclement1964
19
Dec 30, 2017
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I just signed onto the Darkvoice drop the other day. I bought it as an amp for Sennheiser HD700 headphones primarily. I also own the Massdrop Hifiman 4xx and AudioTechnica ATH M50 headphones. I'm using both my LGV30 phone or Fiio X5 iii as sources for music, paired with Fiio A5 or Montblanc amps to drive all these headphones. So far, in order of preference , I like the HE4xx the best, followed by the M50, and then the HD700. Im a bit new to headfi. I wouldn't call myself an audiophile, but I do enjoy the differences in performance that higher end audio components offer. BTW, I've got a Massdrop O2 amp on the way as I'm typing this. Anyway, I've read a lot about how the 650's love the DV. Anyone have experience with the Sennheiser HD700 and a DV? What tubes are you using? Why? Btw, I mostly listen to classic and hard rock/metal. Then, it's a mix of Symphonic Orchestra music, jazz, country, and light opera along the lines of Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, but definitely not limited to them. So, if you have HD700 cans, let me know what tubes you like best. TIA.
Dec 30, 2017
Heinsbeans
15
Dec 30, 2017
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I personally don't like listening to HD650 on my DarkVoice 336SE. It sounds too dark and muddy. But HD600 seems to be able to handle the dark tone of DV better so I'm using that instead. I've never tried HD700, but it might go well with DV because one is bright and other is dark. For tubes, I'm using Tung-sol 7326 and GE 6SN7GTB. The GE tube made a positive difference in sound but I didn't notice any difference from Tung-sol and it possible got worse. So I'm planning on purchasing Tung-Sol 5998 and Sylvania 6SN7W next.
What tubes you should get depends on the characteristics of your headphone. But in general, I'm hearing good things about Sylvania 6SN7W, Sylvania VT-231 and Ken Rad VT-231 for Preamps (6NS7). I couldn't really find that many consensus recommendation on Poweramps (6AS7) besides Tung-sol 5998. Other good tubes I've heard of: https://imgur.com/a/A7eSX
Dec 30, 2017
Danbstein
254
Dec 31, 2017
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Hi. A few comments suggestions in response to your questions.
Since you find the DV dark with the 650, it's really important that you pick "brighter" or more neutral tubes and avoid "tubey" tubes that are warmer. Also keep in mind that it takes some trial and error to find the right "synergy" between the power and driver tubes (but that's the fun of playing with tubes,)....,ok, some recommendations: 1. If you don't like the 7236, I would skip the 5998 as they are quite similar. The 5998 will likely be too dark for your tastes (it's a "tubey" sounding tube). 2. For a power tube, I'd go with a 6as7g. The rca jan-6as7g is very good and inexpensive. A Tung Sol or Chatham 6as7g is better than the RCA, but is more expensive ($60 +).
3. I would definitely get a new driver tube. The GE is ok, but not great. Of the tubes you mentioned, I would recommend the Sylvania vt231 or Sylvania 6sn7gw (which is an amazing tube but expect to pay minimum of $90. There are several versions..go for black base short bottle). I also recommend the Raytheon vt231 since you are looking for a brighter tube. I think the other tube you meant is the Ken-Rad vt231. Great tube, but probably not what you want (it's another "tubey," tube and will likely be too dark for you. On the less expensive end, you may want to consider a Sylvania 6sn7gta (50's vintage). Very good for the price.
4. I strongly recommend making some basic mods to your 650. It's easy (no soldering) and completely lifts the "veil" you are describing. When I first got the darkvoice, I had unmodded 650's and like you I found it way too dark (in fact I almost returned the DV because of this). After some minor mods, i couldn't believe the difference. I've read descriptions of a properly modded 650 as a cross between a 650 and an 800. I agree with that description. The great thing about the mods is they are reversible and incremental allowing you to tweak the sound to your tastes. I removed the foam behind the drivers, added dynamat, and did the "quarter" mod. This link gives step by step instructions for doing these and other mods : http://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/sennheiser-hd650-love-appreciation-thread.44/.
Hope this helps.
Dec 31, 2017
Heinsbeans
15
Dec 31, 2017
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Thanks.
What do you think of this Tung sol 5998? Is it worth it?: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NOS-NIB-TUNG-SOL-5998-DUAL-GETTER-TRIODE-TUBE-GREEN-LABELS-1967/401467143839?hash=item5d794e769f:g:fo4AAOSwIGJaOxsQ
It's claimed to be NOS NIB but only has a gm(?) of 8750/8750. I am looking for a balanced one, but if that's the number of GM, then it seems pretty low. Because I've read others where the numbers were 15,000/15,000. I've also read that the minimum good gm for Tung-sol is 6000Gm: https://www.ebay.com/itm/TUNG-SOL-5998-VACUUM-TUBE-1967-DATED-421A-REPLACEMENT-/222700575081?hash=item33d9fd1969
I probably should've bought that Tung-sol with the Gm of 14,500-15,000. I backed off because I've heard that the Tubes being balanced is important. But now, there's no more good deals available :/ For 6SN7 tubes, I'm considering getting this Sylvania 6SN7W with a 2950/2900 measurement: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Sylvania-JAN-CHS-6SN7W-1944-Chrome-Top/112677297755?epid=140999939&hash=item1a3c171e5b:g:FVcAAOSwShNZ1AtY
The other one has a more balanced 2400/2430 measurement but it says it's 6SN7GT on the base and doesn't have the JAN-CHS logo. Is this still 6SN7W?: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Sylvania-6SN7-W-Vacuum-Tube-Very-Strong-Results-2430-2400-mhos-Code-639/182964511266?epid=141059543&hash=item2a9988e222:g:SDsAAOSwiYFXHOmM
Which Sylvania 6SN7W should I buy?
The stock RCA cable that came with DarkVoice wasn't very good (bought from eBay). So I'm replacing with this: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OJLNEOU/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?smid=A1KF3ITPY3ZC5Y&psc=1
I'm also using a crappy USB type A to B cable from Dell monitor for my Modi Multibit. So that definitely needs to be upgraded. I haven't decided on which USB type A to B cable to get yet but I'm looking into Intona or Regen. But in the mean time, I'm going to get this because it's inexpensive: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00415AHFS/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=A14IIJ8CA334LK&psc=1
I've been going back and forth with the aftermarket cable for HD650/600. Most people says it should be the least of my priority because it won't make much difference if at all in sound quality. And it costs a lot such as the popular Cardas cable: https://www.amazon.com/CARDAS-AUDIO-Upgrade-Headphone-SENNHEISER/dp/B00GMS8RCM. So I'm probably going to leave the aftermarket cables to the end. If anything, I'm more interesting in trying balanced cable on the HD650 through Jotunheim. The modded HD650 (and even DarkVoice) seems cool. But I don't want to risk damaging my equipment. So I'm probably going to leave that to the last resort also.
For now, I'm focusing on upgrading the Tubes on my DarkVoice 336SE and looking into buying bang for buck mid to high range Solid State Amplifier (I'm hearing good things about Asgard 2 and Jotunheim).
Dec 31, 2017
Uzuzu
1384
Dec 31, 2017
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I don't hear a veil on the hd650 since the silver drivers =\, or at least I love the way they sound as they are
Dec 31, 2017
Danbstein
254
Dec 31, 2017
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I would keep the stock cable..I'm not a big believer in cables (to a point). The rca cable is probably okay but you might see a minor improvement with better interconnects (more of a longevity issue in my opinion). I think you have the right idea to invest in tubes.
All the tubes you ask about seem fine, although all are pricey. If you are willing to be patient, you can get a decent 5998 for about $50 to $60 (US). The 6sn7w's are not the 6sn7w's I was talking about. It gets confusing, but you want a 6sn7w without a "chrome dome". In other words clear glass.
This thread on headfi is indispensable for proper identification of 6sn7 type tubes (it's worth the time reading through it, especially to avoid spending $100 on a $30 tube. https://www.head-fi.org/threads/the-6sn7-identification-guide.209782/
Also, brentjessee.com is one of the best places to get guaranteed great tubes, but you'll pay premium prices. If you are already willing to spend $100, you may want to go with him. He's also very helpful and responsive (and honest) if you have questions.
Dec 31, 2017
Danbstein
254
Jan 1, 2018
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oops, Brent Jessee's website is http://www.audiotubes.com/
Jan 1, 2018
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