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Wish List Poll your project wishes here

View Poll Results: Cheap and Cheerful Intro to Valves kit
Great idea, every range needs one 32 96.97%
No thanks, these are covered elsewhere 1 3.03%
Voters: 33. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 31st December 2005, 01:45 PM
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Paul Welsby Paul Welsby is offline
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Default Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

Something like the wad KEL84 is a must.

10 + watts
less than 300 pounds
PCB?? (not too sure cause i hate PCB's after much modding of my KEL 84)
Sweet sounding



Paul
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  #2  
Old 31st December 2005, 02:05 PM
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david counter david counter is offline
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

most of the problems with the pcb on the Kel84 were due to it's inferior quality,
not really suited to diy upgrading
if that could be addressed then a pcb would be fine
I've just built a Jim Hagerman Cornet, the pcb is excellent, nice and thick with substantial through plated holes able to take a lot of abuse,
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  #3  
Old 31st December 2005, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

I have voted YES.
Every range needs a cheap and simple starting option.
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  #4  
Old 31st December 2005, 03:43 PM
Ianm2 Ianm2 is offline
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

I suggest 6v6 valves as an alternative.

They are cheap, widely available, sound great in the audionote kit 4. And make a change.
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  #5  
Old 31st December 2005, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

Or...........What happened to KECL82? Nick Lucas was gonna sell me bag of components,circuit board n three trannies for 140 quid.

Last edited by Martin213; 31st December 2005 at 06:11 PM.
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  #6  
Old 31st December 2005, 07:44 PM
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Paul Barker Paul Barker is offline
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

6v6 better in sense of valve cooling but less powerful. Sounds good but so does el84.

el84 base kit gets my vote.
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  #7  
Old 31st December 2005, 08:24 PM
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

Kel84 got _me_ started! It's a lovely little amp and cheap enough to "get your feet wet". Of course I couldn't stop there....

So I'd say a cheaper kit, simple to build would be a great asset to the "range".

Tony
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  #8  
Old 13th January 2006, 09:30 AM
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

Absolutely...

Martin213 mentioned the KECL82 - it was a cracking little design. I have had one for a year or so now and have been very happy with it. I even wrote a small review back on the WAD site. (Here)

An alternative that I would like to see would be a small, simple amp with a push-pull EL84 output stage and an ECC88 on the front end. Both lovely sounding valves.
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  #9  
Old 21st March 2006, 09:07 PM
bikerhifinut bikerhifinut is offline
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Default Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

EL84 yes!
Given a decent set of output transformers, I think the Humble EL84 in UL mode is a hard act to follow.
Of course I would say that, given that I'm a dyed in the wool leak stereo20 enthusiast!
Lovely simple circuit and plenty of upgrade options in respect of coupling caps etc.
PCB would be fine for a beginner too. Hows about designing it so that the coupling capacitors are mounted on solder pins so that afterwards you can upgrade them?
Oh and lets see it with a Valve rectifier.
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  #10  
Old 12th May 2006, 02:37 PM
naimbrain naimbrain is offline
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Talking Re: Cheap and easy to assemble starter kit.

Yes,

Cheap and easy is the entry point for novices to get onto the ladder (or to see if they want to get off the never ending upgrade ladder of a certain UK hifi manufacturer).

For me the HD83 was the ideal 'toe dipping' option, even if the sound had dissapointed it still would've provided a headphone option at a fraction of the price of the Naim (there, I've said it - wash my mouth out and change my username) solution. Needless to say the HD83 did leave me dissapointed, but only with the sound coming out of my speakers. I've been squirreling funds for the last 18 months, and was on the verge of ordering when WAD became WATF (Well And Truly F##ked).

Since the arrival of World Designs Ive been watching their product portfolio very closely knowing it's a matter of 'when' not 'if'. I was going to make a bit of a point about increased prices at this point in my reply, but I've just saved myself some terminal embarrassment (so I'll admit my profound stupidity instead - I bet no one is going to argue about that!!). I was very disappointed to see the Headphone 2 offered at £398 (inc VAT) and the KEL84 at £471 (inc VAT). DUR-ERR!!! Only now have I noticed that what I thought was the the 'inc VAT' prices are actually the Euro prices (the euro symbol was probably the clue), I'll just change my user name from Naimbrain to Nobrain!!

The point of exposing my stupidity is this, at £471 it was a bit too pricey to take the plunge, at £325 I'll be placing an order pretty sharpish (I would order right now except that next month's (06/06) HFW DIY article will be on a World Designs amp). It'll either be more info on the KEL84 or something new - either way it's worth waiting to find out. So does this prove that cheap and easy is the right approach if the DIY community is to grow? Probably, though with the extra funds stashed over the intervening months (and an old WAD KLPP1 picked up at a bargain price) I could go straight for the 300B PSE monoblocks at £895 (not £1,297 like wot I thought).

Faced with this kind of tricky choice I guess life could be a whole lot worse!!
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