I have had quite a few vintage tube amplifiers, most featured on this site. All have sounded nice but I have never kept any for any length of time, and none reproduced the sound better than the Accuphase E303. Now, this could be because I hadn’t built a system around a tube amp and when I got the Accuphase it just happened to work well with what I had. At that time that was Tony Gee’s “Soup” Accuton speakers with a Chinese 1541A DAC and mac mini as source. Well, after a cross country move the “Soup” speakers and the Accuphase are gone. I had built another pair of speakers based on a Tony Gee design, I called the “Blackbirds” so I needed an amp. With the “Blackbirds very friendly phase and impedance plots and 90dB, 2.83v @ 1 m, I thought the “TubelabeSE might be fun to try. I think it cost under $500 with all the parts. A real value for such a modern, well thought out, design.
Oh, and I won’t be parting with it in the foreseeable future.
Parts cut and ready for assembly
The jig used for the tube chimneys