Hello and welcome to the new Astin Trew blog site. Established to disseminate news and views to all Astin Trew customers and potential customers.
Our first bulletin is regarding valves (tubes if you prefer the US description) and alternative valves that our customers, UK Dealers and Distributors around the world have tried and fed back information to us about.
A new AT3500 CD player of current production comes fitted with the Golden Dragon 6922 - this valve, which offers good sound and nutrality, is becoming difficult to source in the numbers we require; and we are going to have to supply the Electro-Harmonix 6922 in future batches. The Eletro-Harmonix valve offers a different perspective to the music, perhaps a tad less dynamic, but with some additional 'inner detail' referencing to the Golden Dragon. They are both better than other current production vales we have tried to date.
So what feedback have we had on this subject? Dimitri, our Italian Distributor, swears by the 'Bugle Boy' brand and I have to say that the music our AT3500 was making in the Mad for Music room at the Milan Show this year was wonderful.
Just a few weks ago, Stephen at The Audio Consultants (Dealer just outside Reading) suggested we should try the Phillips JAN new old stock (NOS) valve he likes very much. As I was visiting, with the AT3500, we tried the replacement valve and I was amazed by the improvement in just about every aspect of the musical presentation - more bass with better articulation, better tonality, cleaner high frequencies etc. etc. I was sold on this upgrade!
This valve is not of course manufactured now so it can never be offered as standard, but whilst there are stocks available, we will be offering it as an upgrade valve through our UK Dealers. Those of you outside of the UK will have to ask your Dealers to source the valve for you, or search them out for yourselves!
If you have tried any other valves that you think we should know about, feel free to let us know. You can contact us from the 'contact' page on our web site www.astintrew.co.uk
NOTE: If you are not a trained or compitant electrician, please ask your Dealer to change the valve over. If you do decide to change the valve yourself, always refer to the instructions supplied with the AT3500 CD player.
...and guess what, the Bugle Boy valve is a re-badged Phillips JAN valve, so I'm told. Well there we go.
Happy listening, Michael Osborn, Managing Director, Astin Trew.