EC Aficionado (was: The Studio Jr.)

Discussion in 'Eddie Current' started by AppleheadMay, Nov 10, 2015.

  1. Galm

    Galm Friend

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    Blegh... Some unexpected circumstances came up and I'm no longer able to have the space for an Aficionado...

    In fact... Some of you may have noticed I said I have a DAVE in house... Well I was trying it out hoping this wouldn't happen but it did... DAVE is now my only audio device left besides my headphones to save space... Yggy, Raggy, and my speakers are all gone/going :( I'll be traveling by car a ton now, and an all in one was the only thing somewhat practical to still lug around.

    I feel terrible about having to back out... My amp was very close to up soon too... Probably already being built.

    So I guess I'm just making this post to apologize to EC and also to say that someone who was borderline batch 2 may be moved up... Leaves a really bad taste in my mouth to do this to EC. I'm really crushed by this, enjoy your amps people! You never know when life will get in the way. I literally waited for like 5 months just to cancel with a couple weeks left... I hope I'll be able to try one of these at a meet eventually still.
     
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  2. Jozurr

    Jozurr Acquaintance

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    It's still just an amp. Life always comes first. Hope whatever life has in turn for you is great.

    Cheers
     
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  3. TomNC

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    Now that there are a number of AFs out for the early buyers, I wonder anybody can offer some comparative impressions of the AF against the famed Moth S2A3. I have yet got a chance to listen to an AF, but listening to the Moth has left me an enduring impression of it far superiority over any other headphone amps I have experienced in bass slam and realism of imaging.

    From what I have gathered from this thread, the AF seems to have considerably less slam than the Moth. However, I wonder if the AF is better than the Moth in other aspects, like overall tonality and resolution.

    I ask for the distinction as I have an eye on getting one of them, but not both.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
  4. Marvey

    Marvey Loves sex and records

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    Tonally, the Moth is bassier and rolled in the highs, but I wouldn't necessarily say that the Moth has more bass slam than the AF. The Moth presentation is a bit softer. Where the Moth exceeds the AF is clarity and resolution (this last one by a tick). AF beats the Moth for soundstage. The downside to the Moth is that is unusable with headphones (hum and noise) without major surgery to remove the power transformer and put it into an external chassis. If you can do this, then the Moth is worth getting especially when used with HD800s or other brighter headphones. Finally, if something goes wrong with Moth, Craig will not service it.
     
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  5. Marvey

    Marvey Loves sex and records

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    Special SBAF version of the manual attached. There may be future editions of the manual.
     

    Attached Files:

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  6. TomNC

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    Thanks for your input. The Moth amp I listened to indeed produced slight hum. It is remarkable that the AF has an even larger soundstage. I also suspected the Moth might be too dark (with RCA monoplates) for many music tracks. All considered, the AF seems to be a more sensible option.
     
  7. gbeast

    gbeast Mighty Moral Power Ranger

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    Finally getting to compare the Bendix 2C51 to the WE 2C51. Short story is that I will keep my Bendix but also want a WE tube as well.
    [​IMG]
    Western electric 2C51:

    - better timbre
    - sweeter tonality and natural bloom in the midrange/better with vocals
    - More wet sounding
    - Less deep or distant in soundstage` and more forward
    - More organic
    - better dynamic range

    Bendix 2C51:
    - better layering
    - boxier midrange that sounds a little strained in comparison. The We opens up more in the mids
    - equal clarity
    - very slightly less boomy in the bass and a little more focused
    - More dry in comparison but still natural sounding

    I think I like the WE more but the Bendix is an excellent sounding tube.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2017
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  8. RiddleyWalker

    RiddleyWalker Friend

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    What could I expect going from ZDS to Aficionado? I adore the ZDS with a warm-ish tube like the RCA 5691. Is the Aficionado capable of reaching such a warm, spacious sound via tube rolling?
     
  9. Ray

    Ray Friend

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    More space, depth, detail. Less bloom, warmth. Much clearer
     
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  10. Boops

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    Hey AF owners and tube hum experts. I picked up a pair of EML mesh 2A3s to try and I started noticing hum through headphones when music wasn't playing. Would appreciate an assessment of the below:

    • On first power up, there is loud hum that drops in volume as everything warms up.
    • After warmup hum is clearly audible in left channel and slightly audible in right channel
    • Hum is not affected by level of volume knob.
    • Swapping tubes left to right: hum is audible, clearly weighted to right channel but overall volume level of hum is less than when tubes were reversed
    • Swapping rectifier and driver had no effect
    • Trying other 2A3s (one pair new production Electro Harmonix and one pair NOS RCAs): I can hear hum if I listen hard but it's not really that bothersome. With the EMLs, it's obvious.
    • Heard the above with Utopia. With 650s, hum is still audible but quieter.

    I’ve started to contact Jac Music where I bought the tubes to talk about an exchange but wanted to run the above by you to see if I'm missing something obvious? If this is to be expected for mesh tubes? Or if I'm barking up the wrong tree and the problem is more likely elsewhere?

    Thanks in advance for the input.
     
  11. Priidik

    Priidik Friend

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    The EML mesh is a freaking broadband antenna.
    Try relocating your psu and other gear having transformers inside.
     
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  12. TomNC

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    Tubes, especially NOS, that have not been used for a long time often need a burn-in period to reestablish vacuum and working condition in which hum is gone. Perhaps you can try burn-in for 48 hours to see whether there is an improvement. Other things to do may include cleaning the pins if they are dirty. If hum remains, the tubes might be at fault.
     
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  13. TomNC

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    Thanks for this tip. I have been battling with a hum issue with one of my tube amp. I had thought the problem was with the used tubes I recently purchased. Now you remind me of a possibility that my electrostatic amp might be too close to the amp with the hum.
     
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  14. frenchbat

    frenchbat BritishBat's arch enemy - Friend

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    @Priidik is right, I needed at least 60cm between my amp and yggy to avoid the hum.
     
  15. Boops

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    You guys are geniuses! I wish I could do multiple likes. I had the amp and power supply on a desk with the power supply about 6 inches from the left side of the amp. I could change the level and L/R of the hum by moving the power supply from one side of the amp to the other. Keeping at least a foot between the two lessened the hum to basically negligible levels.

    One of my EMLs is much more susceptible to the effect than the other, which explains why the hum tracked as I moved it from L socket to R, but it dropped in level because it was getting slightly further from the power supply.

    With that figured out: should I bother trying to exchange the more sensitive one or chalk this up to tube nervosa?

    Side question: are the EML solid plates less susceptible to this effect?
     
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  16. frenchbat

    frenchbat BritishBat's arch enemy - Friend

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    I had that effect with a bunch of tubes. So I'm under the impression that it concerns all 2A3s.
     
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  17. Ringingears

    Ringingears Honorary BFF

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    So have I. I had a NOS 6SN7 that would pick up my neighbors cell phone if he was talking next to our fence.
     
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  18. sfoclt

    sfoclt Friend

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    Yeah, I don't place my phone near tubes either. Keeping everything far apart and separate is best. No WiFi router nearby either.
     
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  19. Stapsy

    Stapsy Friend

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    I had the exact same issue with my 2A3x4. I figured Craig would have learned to warn people by now!

    IMO it is going to be a crapshoot if you get a less microphonic tube. As long as you can set it up within reason to avoid interference I say keep it. I find 10-12 inches is fine as a buffer zone to prevent interference. If it is anything more than 15-20 inches of clearance is necessary, I would send it back.
     
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  20. Boops

    Boops Friend

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    Yeah, once I get somewhere between 8-10 inches away, the hum is pretty much gone, or below the threshold where it would trigger the nervosa. I’m asking Jac if it has any relation to potential tube life. If not, I will likely just keep it.

    Thanks all!
     

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