• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

What do you guys think of the newly released Nobsound E6?

mhardy6647

Grand Contributor
Joined
Dec 12, 2019
Messages
11,721
Likes
25,637
I think its great to see everyone with such an open mind here......

As far as "audiophile" tube amps striving for low distortion for the past 50yrs and now regressing, maybe thats because the "audiophile" tube amps with low distortion sound so much like their SS counterparts that people are looking for something that doesnt use 500db of negative feedback, having a sterile, lifeless sound that measures great and steals the very soul from the music?

I know id rather listen to something that sounds good to me, regardless of its measurements, than something that measures "perfectly" but doesnt "do it" for me.

To each their own. Enjoy the music!
Just to make my 'credentials' very clear to you -- I have some perspective on this.
My daily driver (listening to Rhiannon Giddens with this now, and it's superb).



Three-ish watts per channel (at 5-ish percent HD) by single-ended, direct heated 2A3 with a 6SL7 driver stage. Straight out of the RCA Receiving Tube Manual table for resistance coupled amplifiers. Decent output iron. Decent quality tubes. Nothing special, but solidly designed and constructed (not by me, but by one of my hifi buddies*).


There are right ways, and wrong ways, to use vacuum tubes to good effect. This thread is focused on a wrong way.
Fifty dollars? Heck, you could buy three Starbucks coffees for that kind of money. Maybe even four. ;)
______________
*
it would be really ugly if I built it!
 

fpitas

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 7, 2022
Messages
9,885
Likes
14,275
Location
Northern Virginia, USA
Since we're geeking out to tubes, the 6SL7:
 

mhardy6647

Grand Contributor
Joined
Dec 12, 2019
Messages
11,721
Likes
25,637
The 6SL7 was and is a fine high mu twin triode. :)

So... here's the thing. These little Asian-sourced boxes are "effects boxes" for audio reproduction -- akin in concept to those used for music production but serving a different audience.
I would suggest that, if one is interested in procuring and playing with a "hifi effects box" (yes, I recognize the paradox in that phrase, but consider, e.g., the graphic equalizer craze of the 1970s and 80s!), there was, and perhaps still is, a purpose-designed preamp that allows one to investigate this more intelligently and deliberately.
A funky little Hawaiian Oklahoma company, PAIA (the late John Simonton), for years had a wide range of interesting kits and products including a theremin*, analog synthesizers, and various preamps and other boxes for musicians. They also had one product that straddled the line between musician and, shall we say, audiophile called the Tubehead preamp. The kit was sold in two versions, one for studio/production work, and one for home use. The 'secret' to this design was adjustable operation of the 12AX7 (another very good high mu twin triode small signal tube, in a 9 pin miniature package) to allow one to hear the effect of alterating a triode's operating point.

I write this in past tense. I don't know if PAIA is still a going concern, but the design was published and it should be "straightforward" to DIY a "Tubehead" if one is sufficiently interested.

6dBsetting.jpg


1673970505397.png

https://paia.com/manuals/docs/9305-tubehead-manual.pdf (read the design analysis on the last couple of pages)

Out of deference to the OP, I think I'll start a separate thread on "cheap tube preamp opportunities" and see if there's any interest.

____________
* Of course, I have one! My son and I built it as a project when he was quite young. Everyone should experience a theremin at some point, ideally one they built themselves! It's a very simple gizmo (two oscillators) with magical qualities. :)
 
Last edited:

fpitas

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 7, 2022
Messages
9,885
Likes
14,275
Location
Northern Virginia, USA
We are always hearing the equipment.
Yes, but some of us try to minimze that as much as practical. I mean c'mon, you're on ASR here.
 

fpitas

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 7, 2022
Messages
9,885
Likes
14,275
Location
Northern Virginia, USA

mhardy6647

Grand Contributor
Joined
Dec 12, 2019
Messages
11,721
Likes
25,637
@kazuviking and @TrippRyder I'd encourage you both to peruse the AK thread on this preamp, for a couple of reasons.

1) the population over there is more friendly to products like this.
2) there's good information there from at least a couple of posters who actually have this Nobsound model and are evaluating it with at least a bit of rigor.
 

TrippRyder

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2022
Messages
30
Likes
14
You may well be right.
Time to go sleuthing!
... or... someone has to buy one. ;)
It ain't a-gonna be me, because I've already experienced a one of these little boxes*, albeit of a slightly different recipe.
This is the one that's been the subject of [EDIT] a 220-page page thread @ audiokarma :oops: ;)

View attachment 257752

Miniature pentodes in this one, and - perhaps? - a more sophisticated design. Perhaps. ;)

______________
* In full and complete disclosure, the one here was kindly shared with me by a hifi colleague from the Polk forums. I hesitate to speak too ill of the little box given the extreme (and unwarranted!) kindness of the source!
Too bad that thread cant stay on track for more than a few posts......
 

TrippRyder

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2022
Messages
30
Likes
14
@kazuviking and @TrippRyder I'd encourage you both to peruse the AK thread on this preamp, for a couple of reasons.

1) the population over there is more friendly to products like this.
2) there's good information there from at least a couple of posters who actually have this Nobsound model and are evaluating it with at least a bit of rigor.

Thanks. Im already there.
 

antcollinet

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
8,168
Likes
13,885
Location
UK/Cheshire
I think its great to see everyone with such an open mind here......

As far as "audiophile" tube amps striving for low distortion for the past 50yrs and now regressing, maybe thats because the "audiophile" tube amps with low distortion sound so much like their SS counterparts that people are looking for something that doesnt use 500db of negative feedback, having a sterile, lifeless sound that measures great and steals the very soul from the music?

I know id rather listen to something that sounds good to me, regardless of its measurements, than something that measures "perfectly" but doesnt "do it" for me.

To each their own. Enjoy the music!
How does something that measures well steal the soul?

Surely something that leaves the music unaltered and as intended by the creators is something that leaves the soul of the music intact - rather than burying it under a mountain of noise and distortion.

By all means - say you like the sound of distortion: lots of people do. But please don't try to pretend you are paying homage to the mighty soul of the music by doing so.

Your post gets a huge :rolleyes: from me.
 

fpitas

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 7, 2022
Messages
9,885
Likes
14,275
Location
Northern Virginia, USA
How does something that measures well steal the soul?

Surely something that leaves the music unaltered and as intended by the creators is something that leaves the soul of the music intact - rather than burying it under a mountain of noise and distortion.

By all means - say you like the sound of distortion: lots of people do. But please don't try to pretend you are paying homage to the mighty soul of the music by doing so.

Your post gets a huge :rolleyes: from me.
I guess because I'm an engineer, and my soul disappeared long ago. I wouldn't know it if I saw it (or heard it).
 

TrippRyder

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2022
Messages
30
Likes
14
How does something that measures well steal the soul?

Surely something that leaves the music unaltered and as intended by the creators is something that leaves the soul of the music intact - rather than burying it under a mountain of noise and distortion.

By all means - say you like the sound of distortion: lots of people do. But please don't try to pretend you are paying homage to the mighty soul of the music by doing so.

Your post gets a huge :rolleyes: from me.
Who said anything about a "mountain of noise and distortion"?

If the only criteria to good music reproduction was distortion and noise then modern stuff would be pretty much perfect. Unfortunately, thats not the case.

There is plenty of gear that measures well and doesnt sound so good. Harsh, dry, analytical, fatiguing. Im NOT saying ALL good measuring gear is that way, but there is a bunch that falls into that domain.

Edit: Lots of amps\preamps use a ton of NFB and or GNFB to stabilize the amp and\or reduce distortion. It also squashes the life from the music.
 

mhardy6647

Grand Contributor
Joined
Dec 12, 2019
Messages
11,721
Likes
25,637
That bunch of diodes and capacitors top middle, togehther with the IC there looks like it may be a charge pump to boost the voltage.
yup. Mystery: solved.

1673979631568.png


"Those meddling kids and their SMDs!" ;)

maxresdefault.jpg
 
Last edited:

antcollinet

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
8,168
Likes
13,885
Location
UK/Cheshire
Who said anything about a "mountain of noise and distortion"?

If the only criteria to good music reproduction was distortion and noise then modern stuff would be pretty much perfect. Unfortunately, thats not the case.

There is plenty of gear that measures well and doesnt sound so good. Harsh, dry, analytical, fatiguing. Im NOT saying ALL good measuring gear is that way, but there is a bunch that falls into that domain.

Edit: Lots of amps\preamps use a ton of NFB and or GNFB to stabilize the amp and\or reduce distortion. It also squashes the life from the music.
What do you think are the technical characteristics of a musical waveform that creates "harsh dry analytical fatiguing"? There is only frequency response, noise and distortion. If a device has flat FR, inaudible noise, and inaudible distortion, then it delivers the music exctly as created. If your sound is harsh/fatiguing after that, then either that is in the music recording itself, or it is somewhere else in your system. Most likely in the interaction between your speakers and room - or in the speakers themselves.

Negative feedback does nothing to the music, except (if implemented correctly - ie there is enough of it) eliminating distortion from the amplification. It certainly doesn't "squash the life out of it"
 
Last edited:

fpitas

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 7, 2022
Messages
9,885
Likes
14,275
Location
Northern Virginia, USA
Feedback is the bête noire of the audiophile crowd. At this point I ignore those conversations unless I'm talking to a control system engineer or audio amp designer.
 

Waxx

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 12, 2021
Messages
2,072
Likes
8,305
Location
Wodecq, Hainaut, Belgium
Negative feedback is or was not the problem with class D amps, it's the disharmonic noise that it generated in older models. The IC's were noisy, the smps was not as advanced as now used and so added noise, and disharmonic noise is very disturbing. It needs to be below 100dB to be not disturbing for me in a hifi situation and untill the birth of the first NCore, it was not that low. W

ith a class A amp, and less degree a class AB amp, the noise can be much higher as the strongest noise that masks the rest is harmonic, and low harmonic. And those enchange the sound and create the "warmth" and "life" (actually low harmonic distortion), that TrippRyder misses in class D amps and claims comes from negative feedback.

Negative feedback can reduce dynamics of music by smearing it, but the ammounts fof negative feedback that is needed for that is far beyond what is typically used in amps. It's not that that takes away what you want. It's the lack of harmonic distortion that disturbs you. I also prefer harmonic distortion btw, but real clean class D amps like the NCore or Purifi amps can also appeal to me. And i prefer very low disharmonic distortion in my "harmonic distortion amps", so this Nobosound is crap to me (to return to the original topic). And yes, i have one of the older models.
 

TrippRyder

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2022
Messages
30
Likes
14
There are right ways, and wrong ways, to use vacuum tubes to good effect. This thread is focused on a wrong way.
Fifty dollars? Heck, you could buy three Starbucks coffees for that kind of money.

Its not marketed as anything other than a preamp. Its not an "effects box", or a "BBE Sonic Maximiser" or an EQ, etc.

So if it works as a preamp should, and doesnt introduce a "mountain of distortion and noise" (to borrow some prose from tonycollinet), then why is it "the wrong way"? Is it because it doesn't cost a bunch, or because it doesn't fit your preconceived notion of what a tube preamp "should be"?

There are a lot of assumptions in this thread, some of which have already been disproved. Perhaps we should wait until some testing has been done before deciding a verdict.
 
Top Bottom