SOLD - purchased placed deposit. I will remove this once the unit has been picked up. Thanks.
This is for a perfect mint Line Magnetic 508ia integrated SET tube amp rated at 45 watts. 220volt version.
I've owned and sold two Line Magnetic 518ia to their new happy owners here on USAudiomart. I sold them because I was shifting to wireless set ups.
However, after selling the 518s, I read online that the 508ia were significantly better than the 518ia. I did not quite believe that because the 518ia is so excellent. However, I conversed with another enthusiast who A/B both in the same environment and raved about the 508. Piqued, I decided to get one on my trip to Asia as a buddy of mine is a distributor to satisfy my curiosity even though I really do not need the unit. .
Well, these are FANTASTIC! For me, they are clearly better than the 518s, even with high efficiency 98db speakers I am testing. Just wow!
From an audio perspective, it is better than the already excellent 518ia in these ways for me: 1. More density/weight to the sound. There is a sense of much stronger grip/control of the drivers. This is very significant. 2. As good or better resolution than the 518. 3. More accuracy and three dimensionality in the musical space they create.
I also prefer them to the 518 in non audio ways: 1. The two meters actually track the power output and not just act as biasing meters with the 518ia. It is nice to see the meters bounce in the same way as the uber sized 219. You can also turn the meter illumination on and off - a nice touch. 2. There is a switch that varies the amount of 'signal feedback' in four stages. I don't know what that actually does but I set it at the lowest setting as that gives the most weight to the one and is my preference.
I can say this with less than 50 hours on the system so they are not fully broken in, they are clearly a substantial step up from the 518ia.
There are three drawbacks compared to the 518ia: 1. More sensitive to line noise. I have a bank of lights in my home that when I turn on, there is hum on this amp. Late at night, when the power is cleaner, the amp is silent but it is more prone to line variations than the 518ia during the day. (Note - I had a USA voltage 518ia and a 220V 518ia through transformer here in the USA - and both were equally quiet and I preferred the 220V by a touch for its greater perception of 'weight' in tone though this could simply be unit variation.) 2. Heavier - It is at least 10 lbs heavier, presumably due to the transformer. (Transformer itself is silent) 3. Cost more.
Now that my curiosity is satisfied, I am asking a firm $2850 for LOCAL pick up only in Southern California. I have all original papers and packing and will include a 1000 watt transformer that is 2.5 times more power than this unit will consume at maximum.
I'm not sure there's another SET amp other there that offers this kind of value. I was very tempted to ditch my wireless system and order another pair of speakers just to take advantage of this amp but saner minds (including my lovely wife's) prevailed as I need to simplify.