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Tube-friendly speakers
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Good afternoon everybody...

I would like to collect all models of speakers which you would consider adapt to a tube amplifier. I currently have a Jadis DA50 which is 35W only and would like to try to hear its full potential before chosing the right speakers.

I guess a tube-friendly speakers would need to have an high nominal impedence (so an 8 Ohm would be better than a nominal 4 Ohm I guess), ideally flat impedance and high sensitivity (over 90db). Is that right? 

Please do not hesitate to write down technical comments as well on what I said!

Thanks a lot

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Hi Alex,

As for the impedance, I think 'flat' is more important than 'high'. And as I understand it, a benign impedance can make up for a somewhat lower sensitivity. So with some 86 dB/W/m, I think Harbeths might still work out fine.

Unless you consider mixing your tubes with class D a blasphemy, I also suggest the (semi-active) GoldenEar Triton Twos. I think they can be auditioned in your favourite shop in Brussels. They are no lookers as Sonus Fabers are, though, more the functional type, but they can help a modestly powered amp to rock.

And then, there's the Devores, of course.

Erik

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

How loud do you want them to go?

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

I don't know which music you like and how loud you want to listen and how big your room is.

If you like "rough music", tubes would never really give the energy. If you don't listen loud and/or your room is medium to small, then your 35 watts is no problem, and you do't even need high efficiency speakers.

There are a lot of speakers not especially meant for tubes that will do very well in practice. The ease of drive is also important (impedance esp. in the lower freq.)

Audio Notes are very well for tubes they say, but i never heard them. If you combine any "musical sounding" speaker with tubes, the result should be very good.

Airport Express (still analog!), Artephonos Energa (tube-amp), Peitho 303 (infinite baffle speakers)

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

DocG wrote:

Hi Alex,

As for the impedance, I think 'flat' is more important than 'high'. And as I understand it, a benign impedance can make up for a somewhat lower sensitivity. So with some 86 dB/W/m, I think Harbeths might still work out fine.

Unless you consider mixing your tubes with class D a blasphemy, I also suggest the (semi-active) GoldenEar Triton Twos. I think they can be auditioned in your favourite shop in Brussels. They are no lookers as Sonus Fabers are, though, more the functional type, but they can help a modestly powered amp to rock.

And then, there's the Devores, of course.

Erik

Erik, thanks a lot for your considerations! I might want to listen to the GoldenEar Triton as I have read impressive reviews on these speakers! If they are available in Bx than great!

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

chebby wrote:

How loud do you want them to go?

Chebby, not that loud. It is just for listening not for throwing parties. Mix of jazz, blues, old rock, nothing too heavy nor disco or house music

The room is not so big 4x4 mt more or less...

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Rethep wrote:

I don't know which music you like and how loud you want to listen and how big your room is.

If you like "rough music", tubes would never really give the energy. If you don't listen loud and/or your room is medium to small, then your 35 watts is no problem, and you do't even need high efficiency speakers.

There are a lot of speakers not especially meant for tubes that will do very well in practice. The ease of drive is also important (impedance esp. in the lower freq.)

Audio Notes are very well for tubes they say, but i never heard them. If you combine any "musical sounding" speaker with tubes, the result should be very good.

Thanks for your insight.

I am listening mainly to vinyls now and music collection is composed of lot of jazz, lot of vocals, acoustic guitars, light rock, a bit of country, blues...not at all hard rock, metal, house, disco, hip-hop.

Room is around 4x4 and actually with the speakers I have I never go over 9 o clock...

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Roby was suggesting some speakers from Tannoy...what do you think?

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Zingali

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

chebby wrote:

How loud do you want them to go?

 

This may help:

 

http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Avangarde Acoustic (high sensitivity horns; I reckon Uno will be enough for your needs)

Analysis Audio (the larger the easier on the amp; Amphytrion is flat 6 Ohm load with no amp wrecking electrical phase shift)

Quad ESL and Audiostatic MDi (although Quads are capacitive loads but above 6 Ohms over most of the audioband and dipping at 3.8 Ohm at 11K Hz. Audiostatic are even easier, dipping at 5 Ohms in treble region. however, other ESLs that I know are very tough for tube amps).

DeVore Orangutan O/96

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

One tiny little problem that I find with all these "easy to drive speakers" are the looks, and size. They sure don't look very modern, to say least. Still, I personally kind of like the good old Harbeth looks (without the grille preferably) but it might not just suit a modern black n white home. Currently, I have got two pair of speakers. The first one, Dynaudio Focus 160, are very hard to drive, especially for a tube amp, but they make poor sounding good ol' rock n roll sound terrific, big, full and nice sounding. For more modern music, I use a pair of finish speakers, the beautiful Amphion Argon 2 anniversary. They are also supposed to never dip below 7 ohms. That's my recommendation. These are bookshelf speakers, floor standers might be easier to drive.

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

* Living Voice Auditorium

* Art Deco / Moderne

* Zingali Zero / Twenty Two

* Vintage or DIY speakers ... lots to choose if you have the space

 

Personally, with 35W I think anything over 88 dB or so should be OK at normal volumes.

I have 15W(ish) valve amplifier with 89dB speakers and the volume is more than adequate for my room (I use 1/4 volume)

SBT • Wadia 151 • Aliante PF

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

I think it's just a matter of rounding up suggestions made over the last while:

Living Voice

Audio Note

JM Renaud

Devore

Harbeth

Blumenhofer Acoustics (wild card - I like the name)

Possibly Proac

ART (thx to Tino)

 

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

Cno Evil mentioned many already, I just would like to add:

Klipsch, Cabasse, Heco, Dynavox, some Epos

Anonymous
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RE: Tube-friendly speakers

I drive 84db and 4 ohm speakers with a tubeamp. A good designed tube amp can drive almost any load. It is more a matter of a good design ( output transformers ) than the amount of Watts it delivers. Your Jadis should have the ability to do so.

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