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Vintage High End Tube amps list

Discussion in 'Vintage Gear - Top Performers' started by 930turbo, Oct 26, 2015.

  1. McGowdog

    McGowdog Active Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Pueblo, Colorado
    I don't know about the ST 70s, but my Mark IIIs with my Tung Sol Black plates, its superior iron, and my Pas2 just sound better than McIntosh whatever.

    I guess Dynaco is the working man's amp.
     

     

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  2. McGowdog

    McGowdog Active Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Pueblo, Colorado
    Oh good. There is intelligent life on the board.
     
  3. McGowdog

    McGowdog Active Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Pueblo, Colorado
    I think what he said was the term high-end was irrelevant and otherwise dorky wrt the topic at hand. No offense to the OP of course, as high end is part of the thread title. But to question whether or not Dynaco gear belongs in the discussion?

    I'd rather talk about them than hear someone brag about their tootie fruity BMW, that's for sure, but hey, that's just me.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018
  4. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    26,480
    Location:
    Angel Station, Alabama
    Mac Clinics were pretty impartial re their bench testing against spec, tho' they'd freshen up their own tube products to exceed spec at no cost to the customer. In the tube days, not that many tube amps met published spec, as implied, on the bench, McIntosh and Marantz usually did.
    In the solid state era, many amps had no problem meeting specs. Bob Carver's new Phase Linear 700 did just that on Mac's clinic bench when introed in 1971, for instance. Transistors leveled the numbers playing field, features and price distinguished the brands.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2018
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  5. lordgarth

    lordgarth AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    slightly west of trump
    This is absolute BLASPHEMY.
     
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  6. McGowdog

    McGowdog Active Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Pueblo, Colorado
    Um no, it's not.
     
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  7. BillWojo

    BillWojo AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,750
    Location:
    Burlington, NJ
    My Mac MC40's still get top billing here. I've had a few other tube amps in it's place but nothing comes close.

    BillWojo
     
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  8. trainbuftony

    trainbuftony Electron Herder Subscriber

    In my experience dynaco belongs on another list. A Dynaco st 70 in stock form does not put out 35 watts per channel with both channels driven. I have personally verified this. Even with a brand new set of tubes the 70 is a 25 watt per channel amp, when hooked to the dummy load and my hewlett packard distortion analyzer. For comparisons sake I hooked a rusty, all original McIntosh MC30 (specs claim it's a 30 watt 6l6 amp) to the same analyzer, and it made 45 watts at about 1%. People have opinions and that's fine, we all have different ears. If your opinions are based on published specs, please attempt to verify those specs before presenting your opinion as fact. It's pretty well known that Dynaco fudged the specs. High end gear exceeded specs, and that performance is verifiable with the right equipment.
     
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  9. 4-2-7

    4-2-7 Smart Ass Sponsor Subscriber

    Messages:
    28,457
    Location:
    San Francisco Peninsula
    No one mentioned

    Valve Amplifier Company, today known as VAC.
    Their sound and build quality early on put them in an exclusive class today.

     
    RDecartridge and stish like this.
  10. analog addict

    analog addict Glory or Death!

    Messages:
    9,112
    Location:
    Central NC - RDU
    Eh. I don't see this going anywhere but downhill....
     
  11. Ds2000

    Ds2000 All About every cool stereo component. Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,817
    Location:
    New York City
    I’d love to hear these. Ca 1994, one year short of the usual definition of vintage.
    D8498483-B857-42B4-913E-887440FB271D.jpeg
     
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  12. timsclips

    timsclips AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    416
    Location:
    Central Illinois
    Did the Altec home amplifiers rank as high-end?
     
  13. twiiii

    twiiii Addicted Member

    Messages:
    6,222
    Location:
    west Texas
    If you call $1099 over priced I don't know where are coming from. Of course today they are very pricey. But rebuilt they sound better than a 2301 and only 143 were built. so like a Duesenburg the rarity contributes to the price. At the time working for a Mcintosh dealer I could have gotten a pair for a real deal. Just like I got my matching pair of 275's. But the idea of having 4 to bi-amp my speakers and later on 6 to tri-amp just seemed ridiculous. So I bought Crown amps and eventually went back to Mac 207 amps which I use today. Why didn't I buy 3500's when I had a chance. Well they all needed continue monitoring and service. And I got tired of having to service the few we sold in the field, its also why I got rid of my other Mac tube amps. I could have made a fortune if I had kept the 275's and 240's longer, but I didn't. If I won the lottery tomorow I still wouldn't have a tube anything, opps well I would have one. Ampex MR-70-4 using nuvistor tubes. They built very few of those, too.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2018
  14. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    26,480
    Location:
    Angel Station, Alabama
    I wouldn't mind a pair of vintage MC75 for tube amps. Light enough to move, not too complicated to service and keep going.
     
  15. slimpikkins

    slimpikkins Super Member

    Messages:
    1,788
    Location:
    South East PA
    1D8AC840-76FE-4641-B38B-2719755F32B2.jpeg They had a short life but might be considered vintage by now. How about Melos various huge triode amps?
     
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  16. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    26,480
    Location:
    Angel Station, Alabama
    I'd think Altec may have thought they did. Otherwise, the tube theatre gear has a following, the solid state stuff not so much.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2018
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  17. bastelwut

    bastelwut Member

    Messages:
    76
    Location:
    Franconia
    It is...without any doubt. End of discussion :whip:
     
  18. bastelwut

    bastelwut Member

    Messages:
    76
    Location:
    Franconia
    Dynaco amps are very good.
    I used to have a ST70 and a PAS2 and I really liked them.
    But now I have a MX110Z and a 2A3-Triode with 3W power.
    I like them a lot more.

    BUT of course...everyone can be totally happy with Dynaco amps.
     
  19. FB night

    FB night Member

    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    Central Iowa
    I would just say, that I once owned one of those sought after amps with the extra large transformers, large power tubes, and fantastic finish, with a "wow" factor, rebuilt them for reliability, but was quite disappointed in the sound (and I have rooms full of all makes of speakers, so it was not a match up problem). I sold them (they were mono blocks) to someone who was very impressed with their looks, but I kept several Dynaco gear that was more enjoyable to listen to. Today, I am very skeptical of claims of superior sonic merit from owners of those amps I sold off. It could just be that our ears are different. I also have HH Scott, Eico, Heathkit and Fisher gear that i am keeping. If I buy anything new, I would like to try the 45 tube or 2A3 tube amps.
     
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  20. Adam N.

    Adam N. Trying to keep it simple. Subscriber

    Messages:
    266
    Location:
    Northampton, MA
    Can we define what high end means?

    To me high end just means expensive. That's a simple definition. A simple answer is was it, say, two or more standard deviations from the mean. So, it would be the most expensive 15% of the market. Very high end gear would be three deviations out. So, you're talking about the last 3% of the market. High end vacations just mean expensive vacations, high end accomidations or real estate simply mean expensive real estate and all that is implied by that. But expensive is part of the equation, no matter what if you're going by the street definition of the word. Cristal champagne is high end, not matter if you like it or it's well made or not.

    Is a Mazda Miata "high end"? It sure is a fun car to drive. Is it a Ferrari? No. Is it better for a lot of people? Yes. What about high end cables? Does it mean very expensive parts? Does it mean better yield or does it just mean expensive? In audio high and can also be a synonym for crazy to people who are not Illuminati. There may be benefits in the last 3% of the price spectrum but to the uninitiated it just seems ludicrous.

    There seems to be some struggle here with what are the best, or best designed or highest level components. Generally high end means expensive to people.

    What are the best made vintage amps, or what vintage amps sound best? Those are different questions.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2018

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