Repurposing a P600 in a vintage system


#1

I recently replaced my aged P600 with a brand new P5 in my main system. That left me with a dilemma: what to do with the old regenerator. I looked into selling it, and quickly realized that I’d get, at best, a few hundred dollars for what is, after all, a really old piece of kit. So I humped it down the stairs to the basement where the other geriatrics - otherwise known as my vintage pieces - live. That system is built around two fully restored 50 year olds: a Fisher 500C receiver; and a pair of AR3a speakers. (The rest of that system is comprised of an Advent 300 receiver used as a preamp/phono section; a Technics SP25 TT/Grace 707 arm/Shure V15V RS vinyl front end and a Musical Fidelity A3.2 CD player.) Anyway, for shits and grins I decided to hook the Fisher, Advent and Musical Fidelity pieces up to the P600. I started off in sin mode, just to be safe. Nothing blew up, and since I didn’t smell smoke, I decided to try multi wave. As soon as I heard SS1 I knew I was on to something. Instead of the pleasant muzak I was used to hearing from this system, I got a smaller scaled version of my big rig. Almost all vestiges of “vintage” sound disappeared! Anemic dynamics were replaced by blatty horns and impactful drums. Flabby acoustic and electric bass got tightened up. Highs that I thought my 3a’s could no longer reproduce appeared as if from behind a curtain. Best of all, no damage was done to what this system had always done well, voices in particular. Now I’m not saying this system sounds as good as my upstairs system. It doesn’t. But it sure is a damn sight better that it was powered directly out of the wall. I have two theories as to why. First, according to my P5, my power is good, but not great (about 2.5% THD and 117.5 volts most times of day). The P600 obviously has cleaned things up and given this system more volts. But I also think that the SS1 multi wave has something to do with it by giving the components’ power supplies longer charging times. Whatever the reason, the sonic results are wonderful. One question: the meter that (supposedly) shows how much juice the P600 puts out - is it accurate? In my upstairs system it read 170 when feeding my VAC 170 iq tube amp and a tube preamp. Downstairs, it shows an output of only 70. It would read higher in both places if I really cranked up the volume (to way above normal listening levels). Normal?


#2

Neat report. i never would have predicted it would make this much difference. :slight_smile:

I do not know how accurate the meter is, but the figures appear low to me.


#3

The meter should be accurate to within about 1%.


#4

I’m impressed. :slight_smile:

Zach, I suggest looking up the power draw of the equipment you have plugged in to the unit and determining whether the readouts make sense in light of the specs.

Or just forget about it as you appear to be experiencing great results.