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Discussion Starter #1
I found a local dealer for the USAmps TU (tube hybrid) series. As much as I love the Butlers, I would save over $300 to jump to the USAmps 4 channel amp. Does anyone here use them? Are the Butlers really a $300-350 better amp? I don't know much about USAmps other than that they are Made in California and a Tube Hybrid (which is the type of amp I want).
 

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Last I heard, they were the better of the lesser "tube" amps (when compared to mark antony, poweramper... etc.) They are not supposed to be as "good" as the new butlers. From a critical audiophile i know, he said the amp was very nice, but the internal wiring really limited the amp, and that he had to rip all of it out, and replace it with kimber before it opened up. So if you buy one, you may want to change out the stock wiring. As far as US Amps go, they are a quality product, and will take a lot of abuse, but i have never used the TU series personaly, i run ppi tubedrivers.
Hans
 

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if I use the Butlers, would it be possible to wire a 2150 in stereo and mono (mixed?). Run 150x2 to my midbass and 500x1 to my sub. Just use appropriate caps.

It would save me a bit of money and room in my trunk. I don't like what you say about the USAmps.

Any other reviews?
 

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Curious...

Why would changing all the wiring within the amp improve anything? Is shielding needed with tube amps?

Or Does Kimber offer a special kind of copper with their wires? Or Silver for that matter?
 

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I am just repeating what i heard, but this guy has tried them all: milbet, monlothic, luxman, butler, ppi tubedriver, the high end nak's alpines... etc. So i imagine he is a credible source. He said he liked it, just after changing out the wire. He sent me a picture once of his TU mod, but i cant find it. Its the speaker output cables, you can see them run through the plexiglass, its that big bundle in the center. I think he was using some variety of copper/silver hybrid. He could have just been picky. I have not heard it before or after the mod, so i can't offer any personal perspective, but if it does sound good after the mod, whats spending $25 on internal wiring after paying for a $300+ amp? I think he mentioned installing tube vibration isolators as well, but the effect wasnt as pronounced.
Hans
 

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I almost went with Butler, but their constant refusal to answer my emails and telephone calls has lost them a customer. If I'm goin to pay that kind of money, I'd at least like for someone to be able to take my order. A period of 3 months and they have yet to answer one email or phone call. My take on that.

As for USAmps. They just recently were bought out, but not much has changed other than ownership. You can find some info here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3492

And here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3370

Keep in mind, neither of them produce a TRUE Tube amplifier, rather they have a tube driven preamp stage. DOn't ask me what that means either. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Tirefryr said:
I almost went with Butler, but their constant refusal to answer my emails and telephone calls has lost them a customer. If I'm goin to pay that kind of money, I'd at least like for someone to be able to take my order. A period of 3 months and they have yet to answer one email or phone call. My take on that.

As for USAmps. They just recently were bought out, but not much has changed other than ownership. You can find some info here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3492

And here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3370

Keep in mind, neither of them produce a TRUE Tube amplifier, rather they have a tube driven preamp stage. DOn't ask me what that means either. :D
that is strange. I just called Butler and spoke to the same guy who always answers the phonen (not just a receptionist). I have had most emails responded to with no problem. Sometimes I have to call to get the info, but they aren't a huge company.

I realize they are tube hybrid. If I had the money to do both, my home system would also be tube hybrid (tube preamp/ solidstate power amp). Perfect combination for my tastes.

I read about USAmps getting bought out. Supposed to still be Made in USA for all but the low end line. I just worried when I called them and the person that answered the phone was definately asian with English as a 2nd language. Not a problem, but my first thought was: They have outsourced their customer service to asia somewhere. Probably not, just strange.
 

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sheepdog said:
Tirefryr said:
I almost went with Butler, but their constant refusal to answer my emails and telephone calls has lost them a customer. If I'm goin to pay that kind of money, I'd at least like for someone to be able to take my order. A period of 3 months and they have yet to answer one email or phone call. My take on that.

As for USAmps. They just recently were bought out, but not much has changed other than ownership. You can find some info here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3492

And here,
http://www.soundsolutionsaudio.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3370

Keep in mind, neither of them produce a TRUE Tube amplifier, rather they have a tube driven preamp stage. DOn't ask me what that means either. :D
that is strange. I just called Butler and spoke to the same guy who always answers the phonen (not just a receptionist). I have had most emails responded to with no problem. Sometimes I have to call to get the info, but they aren't a huge company.

I realize they are tube hybrid. If I had the money to do both, my home system would also be tube hybrid (tube preamp/ solidstate power amp). Perfect combination for my tastes.

I read about USAmps getting bought out. Supposed to still be Made in USA for all but the low end line. I just worried when I called them and the person that answered the phone was definately asian with English as a 2nd language. Not a problem, but my first thought was: They have outsourced their customer service to asia somewhere. Probably not, just strange.

HA! That's the way it goes for me. I hear people complaining all the time how RE or Adire never answers the phone, but I always get them on a couple rings. Who knows, but when it happens to me, it's a bad sign for me. I have heard the new Tube Driver Blues and they sound excellent to me. My interest was piqued when I heard one driving a pair of Critical Mass Electrostats in an old 300ZX.
 

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Its my opinion (some dont think too much of it, but who cares) that the newly designed TU series amps are at par with others like Brax, Tru Tech, Audison, etc... I would put US in the top 5 manufacturers. I am planning on getting a tu600 to replace my DLS Ultimate A3 for front stage.
 

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AzGrower said:
Its my opinion (some dont think too much of it, but who cares) that the newly designed TU series amps are at par with others like Brax, Tru Tech, Audison, etc... I would put US in the top 5 manufacturers. I am planning on getting a tu600 to replace my DLS Ultimate A3 for front stage.
its a safe bet that the USamps tube hybrids are designed like most hybrids are.

tubed preamp, that colors the sound, then a solid state section that amplifys the colored sound.

but the TDB's are a little different..

http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/butler/2250.html

Ive owned two TDB amps

http://www.teamtoxicbass.com/~vinny/amps.jpg

but had to sell one due to financial problems.. i have to admit, my music is kinda boring without it.
 

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10K2HVN said:
but had to sell one due to financial problems.. i have to admit, my music is kinda boring without it.
is that the whole story? i think youre trying to get some bling bling, audiobahn amps!
 

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low said:
10K2HVN said:
but had to sell one due to financial problems.. i have to admit, my music is kinda boring without it.
is that the whole story? i think youre trying to get some bling bling, audiobahn amps!
Hell yeah!! Nothing does it like crome and about 20 led's per amp! 8)

You havent heard my car with 150 watts going to each mid and tweet, huh..?

man! ..10 times more dynamic then when you heard it! then when i had my Seas Lotus RT25A tweets and Lotus RM110 Mids with the L18's...Wow! treble wasnt as good, but midrange was outstanding, and midbass..well you know how the midbass is.. :wink:

but now my going for 150 for the mids, about 75 for the tweets, and about 250 for midbasses..all bling baby (and lower price)! :D
 

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10K2HVN said:
low said:
10K2HVN said:
but had to sell one due to financial problems.. i have to admit, my music is kinda boring without it.
is that the whole story? i think youre trying to get some bling bling, audiobahn amps!
Hell yeah!! Nothing does it like crome and about 20 led's per amp! 8)

You havent heard my car with 150 watts going to each mid and tweet, huh..?

man! ..10 times more dynamic then when you heard it! then when i had my Seas Lotus RT25A tweets and Lotus RM110 Mids with the L18's...Wow! treble wasnt as good, but midrange was outstanding, and midbass..well you know how the midbass is.. :wink:

but now my going for 150 for the mids, about 75 for the tweets, and about 250 for midbasses..all bling baby (and lower price)! :D
ooh cool! i might going this route with 130ish going to each mid and tweet. im hoping for a more dynamic experience, or at least on the same level with a 2ch and 250watts....*crossing fingers*
 

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BK Butler's daughter is a friend of mine, and there was some family matters occuring for a period of time that could have affected the lack of response.

I'm sure you know this, but she said there's a definite difference between the older Phase TD amps and the newer better Butler TDB amps.

I'm curious, will you notice the affects of the tube hybrid on your midbass and sub?

If not, you might want to consider the Zed Audio Kronos due out next month. 175w x 4ch at 4 ohms, and 700w bridged. Actual wattage will most likely be more. My Draconia is rated 70w, but does 95w/330w.

He has a tube hybrid planned, but will be later on.
 

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Couldn't you just get some small line-driver-ish device that could add the "tube" coloration to the music, and use it with any solid-state amp? RCAs in and RCAs out?
 

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Actually, you probably could... I've played bass guitar for years and have a good deal of (professional) recording experience. There are so many tube emulators on the market I couldn't count them on all my fingers and toes... some are good, some are less good.
 

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I guess I've never understood the hype surrounding tube amps... people say it makes the music "warm" sounding, instead of "cold" and "analytical." I always thought the goal was as perfect reproduction of the original material as possible... something the tube amp folks don't seem to agree with.

I must add, however, that I have never heard a system being driven by a tube amp, so I can't speak from personal experience on the matter.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
87DXHatch said:
I must add, however, that I have never heard a system being driven by a tube amp, so I can't speak from personal experience on the matter.


exactly


tube amps are usually a simpler, more linear design. Less stuff to get in the way of music.


of course tube hybrids are a different subject. I just know that I have rarely heard a difference in amps except for Butlers.
 

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I think New Titan can add to this too. I found this after doing a search for Zed Audio. I dont know what to believe in this case, but its still a crappy story anywho. Ant is from Second Skin, and he sent in his amp to get repaired by Zed Audio.

SHort story

I ordered a lanzer amp from him. after about 1 year it went in to protection and stayed there.
I emailed and told him.
he asked how long I had it for, I said maybe a year, but barely.
he said, no problem, send it back, he would take care of it for me.
I sent it in for repair and heard nothing for 4 weeks.
after emailing him he told me to send him $80
I asked what fro and he said because he needed to get paid for his work.
I said that he never said he would charge me and that I didnt realize the amp was not under waranty since he said, "send it back, I will take care of it for you".
he said that I was trying to rip him off, and he stopped returning my emails.
after about 4 more weeks of sending numberous emails he responded and critisized me, claiming I was no better than someone that gets thier car fixed and runs out without paying. I told him that He should have told me it was not under waranty so I would expect to pay for it in the first place, but I would be happy to work something out with him since he did do the work, and used parts, I was just unhappy with the way he delt with the waranty issue. I also felt that I should have asked up front if there would have been a charge to fix the amp rather than assuming that his works :send it in, I will take care of it for you" meant it was under waranty. I played a part in it as well, and for my assumption I would be willing to pay to have it fixed.
he still would not work anything out with me. after another 4 weeks (3 months total now) of emailing him with no replies he says, I will send the amp back to you on monday. (this is on a wednsday)
I offer to pay for it and he declines.

I get the amp back and hooked it up.
turns out he re wired the internals from the RCA to the 12 volt so that there would be a 12 volt jolt sent through my RCA cord to my HU.

I took the amp to a local repair guy that I have used and known for about 10 years.
he said that stephen messed the amp up inside so bad that he couldnt even use the thing for scrap parts. everything of value was missing and the amp was wired to fu<k my electrical system up.

I emailed stephen, and thanked him for the amp back telling him I had not yet installed it, and told him I would like to pay him for th e work, he gave me an address and requested a money order. (knowing that the amp he sent me was doomed!) I emailed him just to get a reply from him. hard to belive that he was willing to take my money after screwing me over like that.

SO my amp repair guy called stephen and stephen said that there must have been a problem with UPS since the amp was in perfect condition when he sent it back to me..


he then refused to answer my emails...

WHen I called Lanzar to see if they could fix it, and told them I got it from stephen at zed, they said " that is part of the reason he no longer makes amps for us. he lets his personal problems ooze out in to his professional work and it effected the quality of ourt products and efficiantly of our comapany. Thats why we stopped using him"



Thats it

ANT
 

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sheepdog said:
I found a local dealer for the USAmps TU (tube hybrid) series. As much as I love the Butlers, I would save over $300 to jump to the USAmps 4 channel amp. Does anyone here use them? Are the Butlers really a $300-350 better amp? I don't know much about USAmps other than that they are Made in California and a Tube Hybrid (which is the type of amp I want).
Just for chits and giggles what price were you quoted on the tu600? BTW, I dont think they are manufactured in CA, but Florida.
 
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