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Carver VT

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TNRabbit

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 5:58 pm

Carver VT

FYI: For those of you on FaceBook, Mark Weiss (basspig here on the forum) of Amplifier Experts posted a thread critical of Bob's VT20 tube amps (Baby Black Beauty). Here's the gist of it:



We found some shocking revelations when we opened up the covers on this "Black Magic" amplifier from Bob Carver. From what we could tell, the amplifier may as well be called "Black Voodoo" because only through the voodoo of marketing would any serious audiophile buy this.

Amplifier Experts With some reservation, I posted this finally. I hate to expose a product of poor judgement from a man who's earned my sincere respect over the last three decades. However, I cannot withhold this information either. It would be a disservice to others not to expose this for what it is.
What we have here is a very average performing PA amplifier or guitar amplifier. It's measured frequency response is by no means high fidelity. And when we looked inside the transformer cases, the reason became abundantly clear.
So my big question is: why would Bob stoop this low?
18 hours ago · Like · 2
Custom Playback Systems I'm a big fan of Amplifier Experts, so I'm asking this out of pure desire to still give O'l Bob Carver, the benefit of the doubt! LOL!
It is possible this particular unit is an anomaly? Have other examples of this model shown themselves to be built and subsequently, spec'd out, similarly?
Given my own admiration of Bob Carver designs and products, I'm wondering if this was a "counterfeit", or knock off unit passed on as factory built unit.
18 hours ago · Like · 1
Custom Playback Systems Your stated reservations, on exposing this, tell me you struggled with wanting to give him the benefit of the doubt as well, so I can understand your disappointment.
17 hours ago · Like · 1
Amplifier Experts It's hard to accept that even good men stoop to treachery when times go bad, economically.
17 hours ago · Like · 1
Custom Playback Systems I wonder then, if perhaps, it was those he licensed his name to (for manufacturing/sales), that took such liberties.
17 hours ago · Like
Custom Playback Systems I know! I'm grasping at straws here! LOL!
17 hours ago · Like
Amplifier Experts All of those possibilities ran through my mind. Did Bob have a direct hand in this? Was this unit somehow defective? I can't answer the first, but the mere observation of the transformers used in this amplifier told me that the performance I measured was right in line with the amount of 'iron' in those transformers. There can be no mistake about it. Too little iron, field collapses too soon. Yeah, the response reads "flat" to 20Hz, if one measures amplitude alone, but by 20Hz, it doesn't even resemble the input signal. The large diecast covers mislead one to imagine substantial transformers, when in reality, 70% of the space is empty air. This looks like an "audiophool's" amplifier to me.
17 hours ago · Like · 1
Custom Playback Systems Indeed. Thanks for sharing your findings, however difficult it may have been to do so.
17 hours ago · Like
Ken Creten Thanks for the info. Why not just build a decent 20 watt tube amp? I'm not personally a fan of tubes for hifi, but it doesn't make any sense to me that Carver would simply spec that transformer. Man. That's crazy.
17 hours ago · Edited · Like
Amplifier Experts Doesn't make any sense to me, either, Ken. I seriously hope that Bob didn't design this, but had it farmed out to some manufacturing plant. Looks almost like Chinese transformer work to me.
17 hours ago · Like · 1
Ken Creten Might it be a weird bad copy?
17 hours ago · Like
Amplifier Experts Like a prototype where they realized they'd need MUCH bigger transformers? Dunno.. I suppose that's not to be ruled out.
17 hours ago · Like
Robert Terry Pascarella I Had A Very Bad Feeling About The Results, In My Earlier Comment I Mentioned Hoping it Wasn't Bob Carver... Geez, What A Disappointment.... Glad I Have Older Bob Carver Solid State Now.... Quality....
16 hours ago · Like · 1
Amplifier Experts Yeah, his solid state stuff was ground breaking. I don't know why he is so far off the mark with the tube stuff though. Even the circuitry is very basic--nothing innovative (like McIntosh amplifiers with all sorts of feedback loops in the cathode and screen circuits). As basic as the circuits in an old Stromberg-Carlson PA amp. I expected better.
16 hours ago · Like
Robert Terry Pascarella I Hate To Knock Him, I Have The Greatest Respect... But, Maybe He's Just trying To Make A Last Few Bucks Before He Retires For Good... I Just Cant Fathom Going Out On Bad Reputation...
16 hours ago · Like
Amplifier Experts Me either. If he knowingly passed these off like this, then that must mean he's on really hard times.
16 hours ago · Like · 1
Robert Terry Pascarella Makes Me Wonder Why He Gave Up Repairing His Vintage AMPS / Pre-Amps....
16 hours ago · Like
Robert Terry Pascarella http://www.audioholics.com/...
Bob Carver VTA20S Black Magic 20 Watt Stereo Amplifier Preview
http://www.audioholics.com
A 20 watt stereo tube amp that is bridgeable to 40 watts into a single channel, the $2100 Bob Carver Black Magic 20 is sure to turn heads.
16 hours ago · Like
Evangelos Dimitriadis As I have witnessed the test bench of these amps , they are as advertised.
15 hours ago via mobile · Like
Evangelos Dimitriadis Food for thought , new lower web direct pricing coming soon.....
15 hours ago via mobile · Like
Amplifier Experts I would like to see your test results. Sine wave at 20hz, at the very least. Would also like to know if the transformers in the u it you tested were different from the ones shown here.
14 hours ago via mobile · Like
Dave Meyers Yup I KNEW that was the one~!
10 hours ago · Like
Bill Niemiec Any chance doing the same for the cherry 180 's? Or do I want to know ! ?
10 hours ago via mobile · Like · 1
Richard Tatum Im a vintage Carver owner collecter and You would thank there would be nuttin but the best in these amps.
9 hours ago · Like · 1
A. Colin Flood shared with Audio Tube Amp!
9 hours ago · Like
Amplifier Experts I own Bob's solid state amplifiers from thirty years ago and they perform flawlessly. I'd like to test a few more of his tube amps to find out if this is a fluke.
3 hours ago via mobile · Like · 1
Dave Meyers Cheap Chinese stuff rebranded. I know of several "high end" companies that do that!
3 hours ago via mobile · Like · 1
Bill Niemiec With the recent breakup of Emotiva & Bob Carver, LLC , and what actually caused it, I guess anything is possible. what is known is that currently all of BC,LLC tube amps are now out of production, either by BC or Emotiva . Rumors abound that BC may reintroduce these amps again in 2014 & Emo may introduce thier own versions. at least that's what I heard from a dealer.
3 hours ago via mobile · Like · 1
Amplifier Experts I'd believe that the transformers are made in China.
3 hours ago via mobile · Like
Amplifier Experts Interesting news, Bill. Bob's business life seems awfully turbulent. Makes one wonder why his ventures have such short runs.
51 minutes ago · Like


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TNRabbit
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From FrankieD's lips to your ears: Sunfire - a quiet box of endless power.

Sunfire TG-IV/400~7 Amp
Carver SD/A-360 CDP
Benchmark DAC-1
Sony SACD/DVD-A
Active bi-amp: Ashly XR-1001 & 2 Rane PEQ-15s
Main: HotRodded AL-IIIs
Sub: Klipsch RT-12d
Center: Sunfire CRS-3c
Surround: Sunfire CRS-3 (x 2)

OconeeOrange wrote:"Gary likes to play it 'loud' as do I. His system begs you turn it up until you die"

RIP WIlliam B. Dibble, 1948-2012. I'll miss you my friend.
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radioeng2

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:56 pm

Re: Carver VT

This is what's wrong with trying to test performance solely with test tones. When you don't know how to relate them to actual use, you can get a much different idea than the real performance in the real world.

Reality check. Have you heard ANYONE here even say the performance was average of these amps let alone a disappointment before? No....praise...and much of it.

So, ponder for a moment why the vast void between experience and the bench? Perhaps it's the person on the bench and what they have to gain rather than the amp on the bench? Is that just possible? Or are we really to believe that Bob is really just an evil genius, out to take our money as is being said here.

And look at the wording used. Grandstanding is the way it appears to me. What a better way to try and make a name for yourself than appear to challenge Bob? Perhaps "Amplifier expert" is following the example of his expert audio friend. Maybe a expose book will follow in this case too. Or a paper to AES, further tearing down that once good organizations name. What ever happened to building your reputation through excellent work rather than EVER saying anything bad about someone else? As it used to be said...."If you don't have anything good to say, don't say anything at all!"

It kind of makes me sick to see this kind of smear appear on the web. Such is the way of the web I suppose. So let me follow the advice of the ages and don't say anything at all. Nothing to be gained by this that is worthwhile. Sad, very sad.

Mark
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Snoop65

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:42 pm

Re: Carver VT

Did this guy even bother to listen to the amp? There are lots of well know amps out there that don't measure well but sound awesome. He sounds like one of the old audio mag guys that only care about measurements.
CARVER LIGHTSTAR REFERENCE+SUNFIRE CLASSIC TUBE PREAMPLIFIER+JBL XPL200+MUSIC HALL MMF-9.1+GRADO REFERENCE MASTER 1+CARVER SD/A 390t=WOW!!!!!!
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Chauss

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:10 pm

Re: Carver VT

The measurements he posted where not the ones I saw on the screen for the amps being tuned by the BobFather....all I saw was perfect sine waves??? Not notched distortion like in that post. But like all tests.....if you are only concerned with the results-not the test criteria - it was not much of a test. one can always produce the desired results with variable input....
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jjptkd

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:15 pm

Re: Carver VT

I had a couple of these for a short time and thought the power / sound was fantastic. Transparent like the Lightstar and just as smooth as the Sunfires. Remember Bob used RadioShack parts to mimic the "cost no object" sound of $10,000+ amplifiers that only sounded as good as they did because of all the expensive parts used.
Sunfire TGP-III
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Snoop65

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Post Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:27 pm

Re: Carver VT

The Baby Black Beauties sound awesome. I don't care what they measure or what parts were used. To me the sound is all that matters.
CARVER LIGHTSTAR REFERENCE+SUNFIRE CLASSIC TUBE PREAMPLIFIER+JBL XPL200+MUSIC HALL MMF-9.1+GRADO REFERENCE MASTER 1+CARVER SD/A 390t=WOW!!!!!!
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angelod307

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:06 am

Re: Carver VT

my oh my. i stopped looking after i posted. now we are gonna talk huh . i agree so i will leave that shit alone huh.
CarverFest: I just go for the arts and crafts
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Zoot Horn

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:52 am

Re: Carver VT

In the amp build at CF I wanna say the transformers were Edcor?
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hewlew1

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:57 am

Re: Carver VT

I posted that on facebook George, and his comeback was that they were inexpensive Iron.
"Carver Audio, why settle for less, just ask my neighbors"
C1,C2,CT3,CT6,CT7/3,CT23,CT26,C4000,The Receiver,M500,M500T/6,M1.5T,TFM24/2,TFM/25/2,TFM35,TFM35X,TFM/42,DTL200,TDR1700,DPL20,TX11,5.2Center,5.1Sub/3,Original Amazings,Platinum Amazings/2,AL3'S,Polk SDA SRS, Polk SDA 1C's, Polk RTA11's, Polk Monitor 10's,Monitor 7's, Sunfire 300x2 /5, Sunfire pre, Sunfire MK2 Sub, 4 Carverfest monoblocks, Mapletree Audio Designs Tube Preamp,Phase Linear Andromeda III speakers, Phase Linear 4000 Preamp, Dahlquist DQ-10's
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Chauss

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:12 pm

Re: Carver VT

hewlew1 wrote:I posted that on facebook George, and his comeback was that they were inexpensive Iron.


Does expensive make it better??? :rolleyes:
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MRHP

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 4:05 pm

Re: Carver VT

Those guys are talking typical smear...internet jocky...BS.

I have been smeared like this for years because I own all single cylinder world records. People like this typically try to approach the situation by attacking a point that cant easily be proven. This falsly makes them look like an "expert" to those who want to believe their BS. They usually go for the "Big Dog" and attack his integrity which can not be quickly proven thus making them look like they know what they are talking about.

BTW I had a pair of the BB 20's at CF13 and had nothing but compliments from everybody that stopped by. I think they sound great, maybe I should look at the transformer so I can be disappointed... :lol: :lol:

haters.jpg
haters.jpg (39.81 KiB) Viewed 558 times
TFM-75 serial #0001
PT-2400 serial #0001
Baby Black serial #0001
A Lightstar or two
Cherry/260's
Carver 490t
Sunfire Tube preamp
ProJect TT Tube preamp
DENON DP-62L TurnTable
Dual CS5000 Turn Table
DQ-20's
Douglas Cables
OK ERIC, LET GO OF THE MOUSE AND BACK AWAY FROM YOUR PC WITH YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR. NOW SLOWLY LAY FACE DOWN ON THE FLOOR!!!! - Snoop65
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TNRabbit

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 5:22 pm

Re: Carver VT

I'm pretty sure they used different output transformers on the BB20s than we used on the CF amps.
TNRabbit
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From FrankieD's lips to your ears: Sunfire - a quiet box of endless power.

Sunfire TG-IV/400~7 Amp
Carver SD/A-360 CDP
Benchmark DAC-1
Sony SACD/DVD-A
Active bi-amp: Ashly XR-1001 & 2 Rane PEQ-15s
Main: HotRodded AL-IIIs
Sub: Klipsch RT-12d
Center: Sunfire CRS-3c
Surround: Sunfire CRS-3 (x 2)

OconeeOrange wrote:"Gary likes to play it 'loud' as do I. His system begs you turn it up until you die"

RIP WIlliam B. Dibble, 1948-2012. I'll miss you my friend.
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OconeeOrange

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:02 pm

Re: Carver VT

MRHP wrote:Those guys are talking typical smear...internet jocky...BS.

I have been smeared like this for years because I own all single cylinder world records. .


Wow, proud to know you. Guys like you who do more than guys like me (just ride around) are off the chart.

I would like to hear more (another thread?)
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frankieD

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:30 pm

Re: Carver VT

BTW I had a pair of the BB 20's at CF13 and had nothing but compliments from everybody that stopped by. I think they sound great, maybe I should look at the transformer so I can be disappointed... :lol: :lol:

haters.jpg
[/quote]


Eric, I couldn't have said it better !!

Thank you!
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MRHP

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 7:19 pm

Re: Carver VT

OconeeOrange wrote:
MRHP wrote:Those guys are talking typical smear...internet jocky...BS.

I have been smeared like this for years because I own all single cylinder world records. .


Wow, proud to know you. Guys like you who do more than guys like me (just ride around) are off the chart.

I would like to hear more (another thread?)



Hey OO I started a thread in the "Way the Hell off topic" section. You can check out some of my youtube vids. :D
TFM-75 serial #0001
PT-2400 serial #0001
Baby Black serial #0001
A Lightstar or two
Cherry/260's
Carver 490t
Sunfire Tube preamp
ProJect TT Tube preamp
DENON DP-62L TurnTable
Dual CS5000 Turn Table
DQ-20's
Douglas Cables
OK ERIC, LET GO OF THE MOUSE AND BACK AWAY FROM YOUR PC WITH YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR. NOW SLOWLY LAY FACE DOWN ON THE FLOOR!!!! - Snoop65
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