E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

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Magnaryder
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E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Magnaryder » Sat Mar 01, 2014 6:41 pm

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E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Integrated Amplifier
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Description:

Class-A, push-pull, enhanced triode, self-biasing vacuum-tube integrated amplifier. Tube complement: thirteen 12AX7 and two 12AU7 per channel. Six line inputs, one tape output. Output power: 24Wpc into 4, 8, and 16 ohms (10.8, 13.8, 16.8dBW, respectively). Frequency range: 12Hz-80kHz. THD: 0.5%. Signal/Noise Ratio: 90dB (A-weighted).
Dimensions: 16½" W by 53/8" H by 173/8" D. Weight: 62 lbs.

Asociated Equipment:

Ariston RD-40, Linn Basik LSV Tonearn, Shure V15 type IIIG Cartridge, Cardas Silver wire service to Cardas wire block, Sunfire VTCC(used as source selector only) heavily modded CarverFest 20 watt EL84 Amplifier, Tascam CCC-222MKII, Carver Amazing Loudspeakers Silver Edition, Alesis Monitor One and Dahlquist DQ-8 Loudspeakers, CarverAudio and MIT Interconnects, Monster and Audio Note AN-9 hand drawn silver loudspeaker cables.

PSVane 12AX7 and 12AU7 tubes, RCA cleartop 12AU7s, Lindal 12AX7 Blue/Green dot Blackplates

Room: 24 11/2 ft long 18ft wide (non-parallel side and front walls) 7 1/2 foot ceiling. No acoustic treatments

Considerations:

During the waining days of CF'13 James Sauter and I were having a conversation about tube amp construction and chassis/component interaction. James made the comment that if he were designing the amp the chassis would have an organic look to it. That conversation has stuck with me and when my beloved Lightstar gear was damaged those remarks lead my search for the gear that will replace Lightstar. Lightstar, being the pinnacle of Carver SS gear will be damn near impossible to replace. Until now it has been my reference when I listen. Very little comes even close, I can count on one hand the amplifiers I've heard that sound better....to me.

I found the V20 on the GoN and immediately fell in love with it. I did my research and talked with 3 current owners of the E.A.R. amplifier. Each one of them had nothing but great things to say about it. I made contact with the owner and struck a deal. It had been in auction but the winner backed out and I was able to strike a great deal. Not only do I get the amp with it's current tube compleement of PSvane tubes but the Telefunken and Mullard tube set Robin was running in it prior to his PSvane purchase. Too cool!

Listening Observations:

Ariston RD-40 TT:

At first blush the V20 makes a huge impression. The soundstage is very deep and the imaging is nothing short of amazing. Yesterday I was talking with Ton Reitz and he was curious how broad I perceived the soundstage to be. I hadn't really spent enough time with an ear on the E.A.R. to know. I put FleetwoodMac's 'Rumours' on the Ariston and took it for a spin. Mick's drum kit seemed 5ft wide, WOW!! I could place each instrument and all of the voices in space, some elements of the band extended beyond the speakers then seemed crowded on the edge(read conclusion). I rolled INXS 'Kick', THEFIRM on next and continued to be shocked how good it sounded. I don't think my rig has ever sounded this good. I rolled in some RCA cleartop 12AU7s in and didn't notice but a little sharpening of the imaging. I put Emerson, Lake and Palmer's 'Pictures at an Exhibition on next. This is an original release LP and I was shocked how much each LP weighs. They're heavier than even my 220gm LPs..wow! This is 70s live music but the recording holds up. Bass was tight, not muddy and you can hear the acoustics of the space where it was recorded. Next on was Coltrane at Birdland. freeking amazing. My appreciation of my father's collection is going up as I speand time listening to it. I inherited my Dads' record collection when he passed. It contains the likes of Train, Charley Parker, Lannie Kazan, Nancy Wilson, Miles Davis and others from that era.

I have a copy of Bostons 'Walk On', Tom Sholtz is very proud of this LP. All analogue, start to finish. EAR RTRs to a deParavicini cutting machine too cool. This recording is off the hook good. What analogue recording does for LPs isn't apparent any better than here on this LP. I absolutely adore Carly Simon's' 'Anticipation' LP, she's one of my favorite artists. Guess it doesn't hurt she downright gorgeous either. The acoustics on this album are fantastic. The LP sounds like she's in the room with you. Jeez!!

Tascam CC-222MKII:

I like to use my copy of Dian Shuur and Count Basie as one of my CD listening references. It is a very intimate recording. You can hear foot-tapping, amanda tapping, ice clinking in glasses and such. BET used to play clips from this session everyone looked like they were having a great time listening to a great voice. She did the Carson show periodically. Johnny really liked having her on. HE would walk over and help her to her seat. What's that tell you about what HE thought of the voice? On this recording you can plainly hear not only fingers running up and down on the upright bass but also finger tapping on the hollow body of the bass. Incredible!!

Sherry and I were playing Mark's CF'08 disc when she stopped me and asked to play track 6 over.Track 6 is a Jimmy Buffet cut called Banana Republics. She pointed some things in the recording she hadn't heard before. Sure enough, I hadn't either. They were right out in front. Track 3 on the CF'13 sampler is a Willie Nelson song 'Nobody's Fault but Mine'. The V20 let's me hear the soundscape of the room as well as the nuances surrounding each note of the plucking guitar.

Conclusions...for now:

The V20 is an amazing piece of audio equipment. Clearly it isn't for everyone. I priced the PSVane tube set that came with it and at almost $100 per PAIR of tubes a re-tube is VERY costly at $1500. The technology required to use 12AX7s as power tubes was a re-think of tube conventions. That said, the music come from a background that doesn't exist, I mean it's not black it isn't even there. I can hear further into a recording further than I've ever been able to hear before. The imaging and soundstaging are unlike anything I've heard anywhere, but I think my room is crushing the width of the image or maybe I'm expecting too much.

I'm going to play with speaker placement, moving them along the long wall in my livingroom hoping that extends the image even further.
Last edited by Magnaryder on Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Magnaryder

Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by radioeng2 » Sat Mar 01, 2014 6:58 pm

Great review Ray!! Thanks for writing it up.

What a stunner! I think you said it best...something like a quality beyond the ordinary. Tim DP is one of those few out there with the ability to ask "why not" and to imagine other ways beyond the ordinary.

You need to not just try moving things around...you really need some acoustic treatments. They make a huge difference in most rooms.

If we don't see much from you for a while...we'll know why. You'll be in the sweet spot with a huge $hit eatin' grin on your face! Congrats!

Mark
I was there "At the Fest!" Hope you were too!

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Post by treitz3 » Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:09 pm

Agreed, Mark. Excellent review! We could use more reviews like this on the forum.

Ray, congrat's on the new sound and I look forward to hearing your impressions as you tweak things and as time marches on. In the meantime, as Bob Carver says, "enjoy the music". Nice talking to you the other night BTW, as always.

Tom
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The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to a good analogue reproduction.

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Re:

Post by Magnaryder » Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:18 pm

treitz3 wrote:Agreed, Mark. Excellent review! We could use more reviews like this on the forum.

Ray, congrat's on the new sound and I look forward to hearing your impressions as you tweak things and as time marches on. In the meantime, as Bob Carver says, "enjoy the music". Nice talking to you the other night BTW, as always.

Tom
As always Bro'. Glad to see You back.

Mark, I can't wait to do more "serious" listening. Its a great piece. Looking at phono pres. Sutherland PhD, Fosgate Signature and of course the E.A.Rs. George suggested a Hagerman and Transfiguration. I've had my eye on Broskie's Aikido but it's never in stock. The tubes4hifi page has some well thought out stuff too. I wonder if any of them sound better than my Sunfire VTCC phono stage with the fantastic deParavicini 7DJ8s and Lindal Blackplate dot tubes?

ray
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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Snoop65 » Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:25 pm

Excellent!!!! Thanks for sharing Ray!!!
CARVER LIGHTSTAR REFERENCE+SUNFIRE CLASSIC TUBE PREAMPLIFIER+JBL XPL200+MUSIC HALL MMF-9.1+GRADO REFERENCE MASTER 1+Cayin CDT-17a =WOW!!!!!!

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Chauss » Sat Mar 01, 2014 10:08 pm

Awesome Ray! I saw that piece- thought it was beyond cool. Glad it sounds awesome! Thanks for the review. =D>
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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by kingman » Sun Mar 02, 2014 7:32 am

Great review! Enjoy the music Ray!!! =D>
In reality, it only matters what it sounds like to YOU!!!

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Magnaryder » Sun Mar 02, 2014 7:57 pm

As you know I had planned on rolling the Lindal 12ax7s blackplates into the driver stage of the V20. Well I rolled them in earlier today and the results were stunning. I broke the seal on a copy of the Beatles for Sale and gave it a listen. WOW!! During the first few minutes warming it up I noticed a channel imbalance pulling the image to the right side. WTF! Upon further investigation I found I had mistakenly switched ICs from side to side when moving the V20 around. I've never heard this phenomenon occur in one of my rigs before. After I set the ICs right the imbalance vanished. Odd that.

I want to hear good stuff out of this amp, maybe I want it a little too much. I've been hearing new things in recordings but maybe it's the power of suggestion..I dunno so I ask Sherry and the TerroTwinz(tm) what they hear. We're all hearing new stuff...cool!

The V20s ability to resolve inner details of music is very good. We're very happy with our new E.A.R. I'd say you gotta get you one of these but I don't reckon there are all that many around, and I'd like to ride this bandwagon alone...thank you!!

ray

did I mention this thing is beautiful??
Magnaryder

Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by engtaz » Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:18 am

Very nice review Ray. Congrats on you new baby (Audio Gear). =D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D>
engtaz


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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by radioeng2 » Mon Mar 03, 2014 3:27 pm

Boy oh boy Ray.

I hope you heeded the manufacturers instructions and know what you're doing with that thing before you go operating it!!



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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Magnaryder » Mon Mar 03, 2014 6:33 pm

Damn, that's harsh Mark! I just rolled a couple of tubes into it. I do need the owners manual though. I would imagine there might be some useful information there. That guy in the back with the knife reminds me of Bob.

ray
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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Magnaryder » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:57 pm

During my tube rolling my V20 picked up a start up whine on the right side. I listened to it for a couple of days and figured I messed something up rolling the tubes. Tonight I rolled the Psvanes back in one at a time until I found the culprit, one of my Lindal blackplates. I rotated them back in position and it worked itself out. I must have had a pin with a little something on it or some corrosion on the pins causing the noise. Well it's gone now so I reckon I can't bitch.

The PO got the vintage Telefunken and Mullard tubes to the UPS store today, I just have to call them tomorrow and pay to have the tubes shipped to me. I guess that's not a bad deal considering what he's sending to me.

AND...he's including the owners manual. the Factory wants $40 for it. Sheesh

Usually as a piece of gear this good is brought into a system it shows all of the systems' week points. The V20 makes everything sound better than it has a right to. Fucking amazing!!

I'm in awe of just how quiet the background is. Speaking with the PO on the phone he mentioned the amplifier he did keep was an ARC costing 23K. He said the V20 is very, very close to the ARC, and he noted the V20s background may be quieter.

Did I say its beautiful??

ray
Magnaryder

Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Magnaryder » Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:04 pm

Today, actually this afternoon, the tubes promised by the V20s PO arrived.

The count is:
[-X (NOT FOR SALE) [-X
4ea-Mullard 12AU7s
3ea-Telefunken 12AX7s
23ea-EI 12AX7s
15 pretty little Psvane tube boxes
Not a bad haul. Who sells white tube boxes? I saw them somewhere on the 'net. Reckon I'll look around a bit this evening.

This give me more rolling options. I'm 'still' waiting on any response from the owner of the Fosgate phono pre. Shit, this will suck! The V20 currently resides on the top shelf of my newly constructed audio rack. It took every bit of my meager carpentry skills to build this thing. It wasn't built with the EAR in mind. This amp needs to be shown off, if I place it anywhere else on the rack it will disappear and I can't have that!

I've been listening more this week and I'm glad I did since I now don't know when the next time i'll get a chance to listen again. My company has taken on 4 new clients I have to start to provide services to and I need to find them housing and staff. Not to mention our newspaper ad goes in this weekend.... a week late. I'm beyond screwed.

Back to my listening impressions, I find that I can hear further into the recordings than I've been able to before. I think all of the little tubes might resolve those inner details, 'air', soundfield and imaging better. What I need now are:

https://app.audiogon.com/listings/plana ... ey-city-nj

Stay tuned..same bat time/ same bat channel

ray
Magnaryder

Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Snoop65 » Wed Mar 12, 2014 8:02 pm

Sounds like you're about to have a blast Ray! You can get tube boxes from tubedepot.com
CARVER LIGHTSTAR REFERENCE+SUNFIRE CLASSIC TUBE PREAMPLIFIER+JBL XPL200+MUSIC HALL MMF-9.1+GRADO REFERENCE MASTER 1+Cayin CDT-17a =WOW!!!!!!

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Re: E.A.R. Yoshino V20 Inegrated Amplifier

Post by Chauss » Thu Mar 13, 2014 7:30 am

0.15 / ea.....
http://www.amazon.com/Vacuum-Miniature- ... B005JEJKJY

Oh yeah.....BTW- FUCK YOU RAY!!! You are just rubbing it in now! :lol: :lol: :lol:
Enjoy my friend! =D>
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