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Questions about tube amps in general - i work from home so im listening to music 6+ hours a day through my current Magni2/Modi2 stack. Are there any issues with using a tube amp for that long? Can i leave it on 24x7 or do i need to turn it off when its not in use? Should i be looking for a new DAC to pair with this as well or will my Modi2 be good?
Also, specific to this amp, ive seen people mention that one should buy new tubes for it since the ones that come with it are not ideal. What is the general recommendation for new tubes for this amp?
Only issues you wold have to worry about are all long term. Aside fro mthe tubes, the unit should last and be as durable as any other solid state amp, and the tubes' life shouldn't be stressed over unless were talking very long term. Obviously you shouldn't keep it on for days on end - like any other electronic product - but 6 hours is no problem. As far as the dac is concerned, the modi 2 should be fine. Whic tubes you use will effect the sound far more than the dac if your main concern is price.
On the question about the tube: it's a general rule of thumb that when buying any tube amp, you should expect to pay for better tubes for the "best" experience. I've seen many people recommend GE/General Electric tubes for this amp, but I'm personally a fan of Electro-Harmonics. However, you should note that the "tube rolling" gig is quite fun, addicting, and in my opinion worth it (highly subjective: some people will swear they can't hear too much, if any difference between tubes) <- due to this part you should really take your time after you get the amp and listen to the stock tubes for a while so when you finally "upgrade" YOU can decide for yourself whether the "better" tube is worth it or not and not some random-joe on some forum. That is, in-earnest, my best advise to you after a few years of tube amp experience under my belt. Hope this helps.
I'm no expert by any means but I think the Modi 2 DAC will be sufficient enough to pair with this tube amp. I don't really think it's necessary to go out and buy another DAC. Feels like a waste of money imo.
I have this amp, I can confirm that this thing doubles as a space heater. I have been turning it off when I'm done with work for the day, but I haven't noticed any issues leaving it on.
There are a ton of threads giving advice on which tubes to buy (there's a very long thread with pictures below, which would be a good place to start). I went with a Sylvania 6SN7GT Bad Boy / RCA 6AS7 JAN based on an Amazon review, I'm super pleased. Finding and ordering replacement tubes of eBay was painless.
Other then the tubs, it gets just as hot as my class A solid state. You'll burn through tubs as they're a consumable, but it should be fine running for hours and hours, and I don't recall the manufacture saying it shouldn't be used for long sessions. Other tub amp manufacturers recommend shutting their device down after a few hours. I've run mine for over 10hrs and its been fine so far. Once it gets up to temperature it doesn't seem it getting hotter and hotter. The power tube does get very hot and I treat it like I would a burning candle.
The Modi2 will work fine.
Mine, yours may be different, came with a slight channel imbalance, which appears to be somewhat common with these amps. I've tired two preamp tubes, which didn't make a difference to the imbalance issue, a new power tube did, although it's still there. My attitude is that I wanted this to color the sound so I don't expect perfection. I've been told tube quality is very noticable in headphone amps so you want to stay away from anything that tested noisy or imbalanced. You're gambling if you buy something untested. I'm no tube expert so this could all be BS from someone trying to sell me tubs, although this advice came from the highest regarded high end audio shop in my city.
I know you didn't ask, but regarding sound, if it wasn't for an A/B switch, I wouldn't be able to make out the difference between my higher end solid state. That said, I do very slightly prefer the sound coming out of the darkvoice. That's my ears which aren't the best, but left me wondering why I bothered paying hundreds of dollars for this thing (plus ~$150 Canadian pesos settling on tubs). If you don't already have a great amp, then it might be worth it. If you like the idea of glowing tubs, then it might be worth it. Besides the, slight, channel imbalance (yours may be different) it is a very clean, powerful amp that looks great.
Everyone read his last paragraph--Canadians are known all throughout the Great White North for their impeccable honesty (and so-so hockey teams). When he says he wonders why he spent hundreds chasing tube Nirvana he's talking to you, Mr. Two-hundred bucks is still a lot of money to me! Are you really going to buy this without hearing it, or the *difference* first? Hey, it's your money...