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In Reply to: RE: I'm beginning to understand what a good solid state amp sounds like posted by airtime on February 28, 2017 at 08:29:25
I plan on keeping and using my Latino ST-70 for as long as I live.
Originally I got the Marantz 250M because it held a soft spot in my heart. It was made the year I graduated high school and it was something I DROOLED over when I was young. Being an old Marantz fan - I wanted at least one vintage Marantz piece to possibly use or, at the very least, just to look at.
I honestly never expected it to sound anywhere as good as it does. So bonus points there.
Now I can enjoy using my tube amp in the winter and my Marantz in the dead of summer. I use my Sherwood S-5000 (a smallish tube integrated amp) in the in between seasons.
Asin some dorky Variant of a Dyna St 70?
In which case .. IMO your expectations are surprisingly low.
Dyna St 70's in 'whatever' guise are simply mediocre amps..and that's only for the Very best variants.
Thank you for sticking up for the guy with the humble ST-70. Maybe if we can just add another zero in the price tag we can make people believe this is a good stereo.
bare, I don't know exactly what experiences lead you to your conclusions, but have you seen this recent landmark study of the original Dynaco Stereo 70? It's really worth reading for its objectivity alone: Gillespie Study of original Stereo 70
As far as the "variants," or "modded" versions of the Stereo 70, they have had a pretty well established following, and people seem to like them a lot. I personally have not heard them, but the evidence suggests they sound good and represent a good value, like the original Dynacos did.
As far as the original Dynaco Stereo 70, I built a new Stereo 70 to the original circuit and added some of the same kinds of performance enhancements that the modded versions use. For example: individual bias adjust, increased power supply (B+ and filament) capacitance using low ESR electrolytics with polypropylene bypasses, a zero recovery diode for the bias supply, stainless steel chassis, larger power transformer, closely matched resistors and polypropylene coupling capacitors all of which I think bring out the potential of the original Dynaco circuit. While not a "world beater," I find the results to be remarkably good, even excellent.
I have a Cary SLI-80 Signature, a Parasound Halo A21 and a McIntosh MC275 MkIV, and I think my Stereo 70 does a very good job of keeping up with their sound quality, while taking into account that they are different kinds of amps. Given a fair chance on a level playing field, the original Dynaco circuit can sonically achieve what I think of as "the high end vibe."
The Latino ST70 is in no way a Dyna ST-70 other than the chassis it sits on. The iron is completely different,the power transformer is much beefier as are the output transformers,the driver circuity can be configured to several dual triodes and you have 4 separate bias pots and a pair of AC balance pots.
The circuit board is a glass epoxy type and the traces don't lift when you desolder parts.
The original Dynaco ST70 sold almost 200k units because it was run for almost 20 years.I will agree that there were much better and beefier amps for the same money or less such as the Eico HF87 and HF89,the Knight KB-85,and the HK Citation 5 to name a few.
If you are talking about the original Dynaco ST-70,I agree it is mediocre by comparison to other amps however, just because an amp is built on a Dynaco ST-70 chassis doesn't make it a Dynaco amp.If it uses the Dynaco output trafos which were decent,I suppose you could say it has some Dynaco underpinnings.
"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong" H. L. Mencken
Ya, that was so mediocre they only sold a hundred-thousand of them, possibly the best selling amplifier of all time. And the design/sonics were so basically flawed that there was no chance for a cottage industry to spring up to make restorations or a few mods to them. Of course interest just disappeared years ago because they were put to such shame by all the later solid-state amplifiers, even the inexpensive ones, which might be considered price competitive. ;^)
"The piano ain't got no wrong notes." Thelonious Monk
Out of 22 replies your's was the only negative, and honestly a little ignorant, response.
Everyone on this posting group has the right to enjoy their own tastes in music and sound. So on that note I'm sure I wouldn't care for your stereo either.
Within the last few years I've finally gotten away from tubes. I was Quicksilver, Aesthetix and Jadis. I now have only the Rhea phono that I'm about to put up for sale as I just don't want tube gear anymore for personal reasons. I do feel that many of them sounds OUTSTANDING.
I got into Ayre a few years ago with the small AX7e integrated and then upgraded to the AX5. Loved it, but when they upgraded to the Twenty series it took things to a new level. It was the first time I felt that I was listening to the best of tubes as well as the best from SS. As with any zero feedback design the bass won't always be quite as hammering as some other designers, but the control is much better to my ears. I like the Pass gear, but personally have a problem with the company. That's just me and doesn't take away from the nice products they sell. There are some really great SS companies and some not so great ones, just like anything else. In all price ranges you can get musical gear I feel.
It's totally different than what it's was years ago. With newer technology and components that use solid silver leads, companies can just modify great circuits or even come up with newer stuff like Ayre has as have some others. Depends on what you want to pay like anything else. Heck, I lived with a small NAD integrated running Proac towers for about 10 years and loved the sound for the TV room.
How would you characterize and rate the sonics of your Sherwood S-5000 vs. other amps?
The Sherwood falls into a different situation of stereo. It's a real vintage piece. So that will come into play.
But how would I rate it purely on sound and listening. It's perhaps one of the nicest sweetest stereos I've ever heard. It has that glorious vintage tube sound yet still maintains a sense of detail. Every time I put it back into the system I'm amazed at how good that little unassuming stereo is.
Focus? Is it at all blurry? What about top end, is it rolled off? Are tubes still available for it?
I might have a chance to pick one up. We'll see.
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