DCAudioDIY.com

DC Area Audio DIYer's Community
It is currently July 15th, 2019, 2:42 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: July 4th, 2019, 4:25 pm 
Offline

Joined: July 25th, 2013, 9:41 am
Posts: 40
I don't have a dedicated music room. Instead, my music room in our family room. 

There is no TV there - just a music system. 

Sometimes I listen to music in the morning during breakfast and again later in the day when I come home for work. 

My wife occasionally listens to the system in the afternoon. 

My question is: Is it okay to turn on-off a tube based system multiple times a day?

I've really only owned solid state systems over the years. I have owned a tube based system at one time but then was very careful only to listen to the system once a day or every other day. 

The manual on my Plinius SA-100MKIII (solid state) amp specifically instructs to leave the amp on all the time, indicating that it uses absolutely minimal power when idle. 

Thoughts anyone?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 4th, 2019, 4:47 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: July 24th, 2015, 4:17 pm
Posts: 907
Location: Parkville, Maryland
dkalsi wrote:
I don't have a dedicated music room. Instead, my music room in our family room. 

There is no TV there - just a music system. 

Sometimes I listen to music in the morning during breakfast and again later in the day when I come home for work. 

My wife occasionally listens to the system in the afternoon. 

My question is: Is it okay to turn on-off a tube based system multiple times a day?

I've really only owned solid state systems over the years. I have owned a tube based system at one time but then was very careful only to listen to the system once a day or every other day. 

The manual on my Plinius SA-100MKIII (solid state) amp specifically instructs to leave the amp on all the time, indicating that it uses absolutely minimal power when idle. 

Thoughts anyone?


A lot depends on the amplifier. If -- and this is a big IF -- the amplifier has a turn-on time delay holding off the B+ supply to allow for the filaments to get to temperature -- then I don't see a problem other than wear-and-tear on the controls. Should your amplifier not have that feature then there is an issue with cathode stripping that can shorten tube life.

As far as the manufacturer's comment is concerned -- I would not call the current draw minimal. Beside filament current and idle power-tube bias you are drawing much more current than your solid-state amps did when in stasis. My view? The cost of premature tube placement and/or repairs can cost much more than the energy usage leaving the amps. on.

It's your call ultimately.

_________________
Walt


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 4th, 2019, 5:04 pm 
Offline

Joined: July 25th, 2013, 9:41 am
Posts: 40
Thanks, Walt.

I think I will stay with my Plinius solid state amp. I was thinking about replacing my passive pre with a tube preamplifier.

So I was curious if I should be concerned with turning the tube pre-amplifier on multiple times a day.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 4th, 2019, 5:21 pm 
Offline

Joined: March 12th, 2013, 11:12 am
Posts: 495
Walt's is generally correct. But think about this for a minute.

Most preamps have a couple tubes at most, many that are fairly inexpensive to replace. A 6SN7 or 12AU7 based preamp may have tubes that last 3-5+ years easily and can cost as little as $25-50 to replace them (about what is cost to fill up your car's gas tank). Is that really too expensive? Especially if you enjoy the sound you get from the active, tube based preamp. I used a tube preamp for many years and just replaced the two gain stage tubes and rectifier every 5 years or so (with daily use).... just because I figured I might as well. I NEVER had a tube fail.

Replacing and matching the output devices for your Plinius amp may require a lot more effort and cost (if the devices are even available now).

Perhaps poorly designed tube gear or designers who want to set their tubes on fire might account for tube's reputation for issues (or tube amps with LOTS of matched output tubes) but a tube preamp should be dead reliable for years of daily use, even with multiple, daily on/off cycling IMHO.

dkalsi wrote:
Thanks, Walt.

I think I will stay with my Plinius solid state amp. I was thinking about replacing my passive pre with a tube preamplifier.

So I was curious if I should be concerned with turning the tube pre-amplifier on multiple times a day.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 4th, 2019, 9:50 pm 
Offline

Joined: July 25th, 2013, 9:41 am
Posts: 40
TubeDriver wrote:
Walt's is generally correct. But think about this for a minute.

Most preamps have a couple tubes at most, many that are fairly inexpensive to replace. A 6SN7 or 12AU7 based preamp may have tubes that last 3-5+ years easily and can cost as little as $25-50 to replace them (about what is cost to fill up your car's gas tank). Is that really too expensive?



Correct - and I don't mind purchasing new tubes at all. I just hope I'm not damaging anything.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 5th, 2019, 7:59 am 
Offline

Joined: March 2nd, 2013, 2:43 pm
Posts: 153
Location: Potomac, MD
I have a tape recorder that I have used often and still do since my dad bought it in 1963. Every time it comes to the end of a reel of tape it turns off, including the built-in tube power amp (EL84 single-ended) plus a bunch of other tubes. I have never had to replace any tube, and I actually did test the tubes a few years ago. They were like new!

So unless there is something really wrong with the design, don't worry about it. Your tubes will last longer if they are not running unnecessarily. But use common sense here as there is thermal shock whether it is ss gear or tube gear. Don't shut things down to take a phone call.

David


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 5th, 2019, 11:46 am 
Offline

Joined: July 25th, 2013, 9:41 am
Posts: 40
dberning wrote:
Don't shut things down to take a phone call.

David


Haha - duly noted, David :lol:


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 5th, 2019, 12:04 pm 
Offline

Joined: June 4th, 2013, 2:39 pm
Posts: 146
Just to be clear, we're talking about a preamp, right? Years ago, small-signal tube equipment stayed on for years at radio stations without a problem. ;-) A tube amplifier is another matter, though. It's not a good idea to leave high-powered tube amplifiers on unless you're at home and nearby.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 5th, 2019, 2:25 pm 
Offline

Joined: July 25th, 2013, 9:41 am
Posts: 40
That is correct - the question was regarding a tube preamp.

That being said, whether tube preamp or tube amp, at no point would the system be unattended. It’s in our living room and the floor plan is open to the dining room and kitchen.


Last edited by dkalsi on July 5th, 2019, 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: July 5th, 2019, 3:01 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: February 28th, 2013, 10:38 am
Posts: 1108
Pre-amps here, tube or solid state, stay on 24/7 unless I'm going out of town for more than a weekend....

Roscoe


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group