World Audio Design / Williams - Hart

Discussion in 'DIY Discussion' started by scott_01, Sep 4, 2005.

  1. scott_01

    scott_01

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    I have been curious about buying an amp - kit for some time. Has anybody actually heard or assembled any of the 'World Audio' or 'Williams - Hart' range of products?

    If so, were they any good and could someone with a limited knowledge of electronics put them together?
     
    scott_01, Sep 4, 2005
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  2. scott_01

    ditton happy old soul

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    GaryG is a fan of this design, and has pointed me to a supplier - will go and look/remember the URL.
     
    ditton, Sep 4, 2005
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  3. scott_01

    Riverdog

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    Williams Hart Monoblocks

    I didn't build these but I can testify that they make a beautiful sound. I have tried a few pre-amps before settling on a simple U$145 passive pre from Luminous Audio - potentially saving a shed load of cash. I live on a staple diet of hard rock and metal and these suit me right down to the ground. Not as shouty as the Tags (60i/60p) or Naims (112/150) and also thankfully lacks the shrill top end of those combinations. There is definately more dymamics in the mids and the highs evidenced by good vocal/instrumental separation and cymbals shimmer more convincingly. Initially I missed the bass thump provided by my other setups but I enjoy the music much more now.

    Best of luck whichever road you choose to tread.

    shamsur
     
    Riverdog, Sep 4, 2005
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  4. scott_01

    ditton happy old soul

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    duh! the supplier URL was http://www.williamshart.com/

    Gary rated the SE monoblocs very highly. I recall that he bought them as ready made.

    welcome to ZG Riverdog.
     
    ditton, Sep 4, 2005
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  5. scott_01

    SCIDB Moderator

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    Hi Sideshow Bob,

    I have heard a number of the WAD kits. They do offer good sound quality for the money.

    If you know how to solder and can follow circuit instrustions then you may be able to build the simple ones like the WAD KEL84. This is based on a PCB so it's a case of fitting the component into the correct space.

    WAD now offer a service where you can get the kits built for for you by an experienced person.

    http://www.worldaudiodesign.com/amplifiers.html

    http://www.worldaudiodesign.com/forum/showthread.php?t=20279


    The kits like the SE are harder to build but sound loads better.

    SCIDB
     
    SCIDB, Sep 4, 2005
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  6. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    I am not usually a valve fan but Nick at the emporium had some heavily modified wad kits and they sounded very good.
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 4, 2005
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  7. scott_01

    alexs2

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    I have a pair of WAD 300Bs here.....with a little skill in soldering(and my skills arent great!)they're quite straightforward to make,and help from Mark at WAD is very easy to get.

    He will also test the amps for their first start-up if you're close enough to drive to WAD(nr to Chelmsford in Essex).

    In standard form the kits are very good,but by adding in things like PIO coupling caps,and upgrading the wiring,the sound improves further,and will easily compete with manufactured offerings costing several times as much.

    The sound differential between the PP and SE versions of the 300B is quite small,esp now that both run as zero-feedback amps,and the extra power of the PP version can be very useful...of the 2,I chose the PP version,having heard both.

    Highly recommended.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  8. scott_01

    vibbles

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    I've built both WAD and Williams Hart, they are both very straight forward with clear intructions and don't require a very high level of skill to finish
    I am sure Mark at WAD would let you have a set of instructions before you commited to a kit so you could see how easy it is,

    David
     
    vibbles, Sep 5, 2005
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  9. scott_01

    Mr_Sukebe

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    I met a chap called Rob (a mod on the PF forums) who I believe is using a WAD he built.
    Interesting amp, in that it sounded very transister like to me, making me wonder why you'd buy a valve amp, still could be just the context of the rest of the system.

    Don't expect it to be all warm and cuddly.
     
    Mr_Sukebe, Sep 5, 2005
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  10. scott_01

    alexs2

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    If it's the 6550 amp you listened to,I'd agree that it's down to the amp itself,as that particular one doesn't have a particularly tube-like sound,but part of that is also down to the choice of output tubes,as the 6550 can have a slightly edgy/bright sound.

    As to the 300Bs,they sound exactly as a 300B amp should....smooth,very detailed,and with superb midrange imaging,and not in the least bit SS.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  11. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    I agree - the WAD amp is very accurate. Which is a good thing!
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 5, 2005
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  12. scott_01

    alexs2

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    Knowing Nick and his apparent love of all amps single-ended,those may well have been the original WAD 300B SET amps,which even in standard form are still rated by some as one of the best SET 300B designs.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  13. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    They were heavily modified - not sure about the tubes. I thought they were 6550. He put them on as I complained about the SET with rock while auditioning the simon yorke series 7 - speakers were his own.
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 5, 2005
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  14. scott_01

    alexs2

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    You're saying they were SET's?.....I assume he was showing you what a good set of SET's can do.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  15. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    No I dont think they were sets. In fact I am more certain as I think about it.
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 5, 2005
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  16. scott_01

    alexs2

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    Thought that might be the case...if they were 6550's,then they were definitely PP amps,and those ones also have quite a transistor like sound quality to them(both the amps and the tubes).

    Having said that,there are plenty of SETs with very decent bass,although not in the league of a good SS amp....Nick's current demo amps would leave you convinced that SETs can do good bass,both in terms of power and control.

    Getting back to the original question....I think that the WAD kits offer the best UK value for tubes kits,and probably the best potential for upgrading at sensible costs.
    The other route for kits currently is from places like DIYHiFiSupply (www.diyhifisupply.com) and US suppliers like Welborne Labs....both of these seem reliable and have had good press elsewhere,but my own experiences with WAD far outweighed any inclinations to buy from abroad.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  17. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    I have looked at Welbourne labs buffer designs - looks interesting.

    MB2s take some driving and a lot of power. Doubt set can do it. Most SS cant. I heard a set of top Mark Levs and a nap 500 fail to do so spectacularly and even with Bryston triamping or active is strongly advised.

    Thumbs up for WAD. In modifed form as good as any valve amp I have heard and better than most).

    Has anyone heard the TEAD soul or linear a amps?
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 5, 2005
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  18. scott_01

    alexs2

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    Sorry,BBV...I was replying in my last post to Sideshow Bob's original post in this thread,and not commenting on MB2s.
     
    alexs2, Sep 5, 2005
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  19. scott_01

    brizonbiovizier Honey Badger

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    Ah I see - I got the emporium dem too - and my posts indicated the design had transistor strengths!
     
    brizonbiovizier, Sep 5, 2005
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  20. scott_01

    Dev Moderator

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    Another recommendation for WAD amps. I've heard 6550 and KT88 based kits and liked them a lot. Unfortunately it also means I like my own (and more expensive) amps less:(.
     
    Dev, Sep 5, 2005
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