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Tortuga TPB.V1 Tube Preamp Buffer Review

Trevor

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1.2k is in balanced mode. 600 ohm in SE.

Why the desire to use passive volume control ?
Balanced or SE ?

You will need an amp with an input sensitivity of around 1V (SE) and 2V balanced.
The output resistance is part of the passive post filter and essential for the muting circuit it seems.
I would assume the output resistance is ohmic.
This means a load above 10k will be fine but you will loose some output level (about -1dB).
Both the load the Ares 'sees' will vary depending on the volume control as well as the 'new' output resistance of a passive volume control will vary depending on the volume setting.
How this will work out depends on the Length (capacitance) of the used cable and power amp.

Why not direct it directly and use digital volume control ?
Or use a 'normal' pre-amp ? I mean the power amp is also an amplifier. Why would adding buffer or few times gain amp be such a horrid ?

Thanks - very useful! So, a 10k passive volume control will be suitable between the Ares II and a Hypex power amp.
My interest in using passive volume control is because I was thinking of getting a balanced power amp (e.g. Hypex) to go with this DAC, but I don't already have a balanced active preamp (they seem quite expensive), and it I don't think I need the gain. I also read some people prefer passive preamps (assuming it all works). Yes a unity-gain buffer with volume control would be of interest to me.

I'm using Spotify on a tablet as a USB source - is there a way to do digital volume control in Spotify? That would certainly solve it - Then I could connect the Ares II directly to the power amp.
 

solderdude

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I assume you can simply use the volume control on the tablet.
Just make sure all audible notifications are off and make sure the DAC handles muting and connecting correctly.
You don't want any 'thuds' or 'ticks' at full volume.
 

MattHooper

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A suggestion like this inevitably comes up on tube amp discussions:

I can understand that some like the warmer sound of saturation.....
BUT, why not use something like this where you actualy have control over the saturation? https://www.thermionicculture.com/i...ure-vulture-1-17-192012-03-20-11-02-02-detail

Why not use one of those in place of my tube amps?

For me:

1. It's Ugly As F*ck
2. I don't know that it would actually mimic exactly the sound of my particular tube amps, and how they interact with my speakers.
3. There's a certain historical/conceptual aesthetic to real tube amps that are part of the pleasure of owning and using them, IMO.
4. No pretty glowing tubes. One of the aesthetic aspects I love in my tube amps is actually "seeing" the music being amplified in the tubes. It's pretty and conceptually pleasing.
5. I get all those things together in a set-and-forget (if I want) aspect with a tube amp. It just makes everything sound as I want and I get all the other aesthetic/conceptual pleasures along with it.
6. It's Ugly As F*ck
 

dasdoing

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A suggestion like this inevitably comes up on tube amp discussions:



Why not use one of those in place of my tube amps?

For me:

1. It's Ugly As F*ck
2. I don't know that it would actually mimic exactly the sound of my particular tube amps, and how they interact with my speakers.
3. There's a certain historical/conceptual aesthetic to real tube amps that are part of the pleasure of owning and using them, IMO.
4. No pretty glowing tubes. One of the aesthetic aspects I love in my tube amps is actually "seeing" the music being amplified in the tubes. It's pretty and conceptually pleasing.
5. I get all those things together in a set-and-forget (if I want) aspect with a tube amp. It just makes everything sound as I want and I get all the other aesthetic/conceptual pleasures along with it.
6. It's Ugly As F*ck

:D

I think it looks great. but you need a rack
 

MattHooper

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:D

I think it looks great. but you need a rack

Understood.

I happen to completely loath the "pro gear" look. Can't stand anything with handles etc. It's not getting in to my home.

(The closest I have to that look is my Benchmark DAC1, but I've pushed it back in my rack so it's hidden).
 

MattHooper

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you would hate the look of my cave lol. everything is functional, nothing for looks. my absorbtion panels don't even have fabric on them

Everybody's gotta do their thang!

For me I have to have a nice looking (to me) generally tidy looking environment to get the most enjoyment out of sitting down in there and listening for a long time. It's like dining out and the difference between being seated at a nice table, or one right by the washroom. The environment matters.
 

don'ttrustauthority

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Everybody's gotta do their thang!

For me I have to have a nice looking (to me) generally tidy looking environment to get the most enjoyment out of sitting down in there and listening for a long time. It's like dining out and the difference between being seated at a nice table, or one right by the washroom. The environment matters.
Atmosphere is another word I use for the feeling when I sit down with a nice couple of tubes and lps and sit down like it's 1956 and my father and his pals are listening to his old set up with tube and solid state. It was mono then.
 

dasdoing

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I don't think my room is ugly. looks just isn't the focus
IMG_20210920_180842~2.jpg
 

MattHooper

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No, this is not the living room.

But though she doesn´t like the looks, she likes the sound and watching movies here

It's good things worked out.

My wife is mortified by changes to our house. She just doesn't have the ability to picture things differently. When we looked at houses she actually occasionally didn't like one "because of the wall color." (Honey, we can repaint the walls).

Her idea of a nice TV was a small one you could hide behind a potted plant in the corner, and "cords" were the making of The Devil himself.

So you can imagine what it was like when I suggested we turn the front living room of the house in to a projection-based home theater - a major renovation. It was like turning the Titanic to get her on board. A scratch in the wall is bad enough when it happens but "they are going to open up the walls and ceiling?????!!!"

And of course the renovation, which was massive and dirty, didn't take the month promised but went on for almost a year. My wife would walk past the deconstructed room refusing to look in to it "just don't ruin the house."

Finally, the results were great and even she was impressed. It's the most used room in the house. Which is a happy ending.
 

MattHooper

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This review has given me an inkling that I'm not imaging the sonic changes as I'm trying different types of tubes with my CJ Premier 12 amps. For instance, with the original 6550 output tubes on my CJ amps the sound is really tight, punchy and focused and airy/sparkly in the highs. With the new KT120s the sound seems to expand in every way, soundstage, bigger image sizes, bass seems deeper, though a bit more laid back, lush, a bit less focused and punchy. I love the sound of both tube types in the system thus far.
 

SIY

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This review has given me an inkling that I'm not imaging the sonic changes as I'm trying different types of tubes with my CJ Premier 12 amps.

Controls are better than reviews. :cool:
 

MattHooper

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Controls are better than reviews. :cool:

Well, so I don't have to add for the billionth time (note: "inkling") that I'm quite aware of this, and all such comments come with the obvious caveats, for you and others I have put it in my signature.

:)
 

dasdoing

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I can understand that some like the warmer sound of saturation.....
BUT, why not use something like this where you actualy have control over the saturation? https://www.thermionicculture.com/i...ure-vulture-1-17-192012-03-20-11-02-02-detail

another option
 

dasdoing

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we are still listening to 80ies sound. aint no production without "analog-sound" in the chain. they even go so far as reproducing analog imperfections in the digital domain. somehow our ears are not ready for the absolutly clean sound it seams
 

Robin L

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we are still listening to 80ies sound. aint no production without "analog-sound" in the chain. they even go so far as reproducing analog imperfections in the digital domain. somehow our ears are not ready for the absolutly clean sound it seams
Whether our ears are ready for absolutely clean sound, our recording transducers are not, and the only way to dodge microphones is with synths really synthing, not playing back the samples derived from the flawed outputs of microphones. There's no "perfect" possible, it's simply a matter of choosing which faulty simulacra one prefers.
 
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