There’s a lot of buzzes around vacuum tubes these days. Like vinyl’s comeback, new music fans are enamored with the sound and shine of tubes. As a fan of their music, I can empathize with your sentiments. Most new purchasers, however, who aren’t ready to spend a significant amount of money on today’s high-end brands, often resort to less expensive alternatives.
The concept of reviewing a Chinese-made tube amplifier a few years ago would not have occurred to me. It’s not that I don’t believe high-end equipment can be built in China, but rather that the ordinary consumer finds it difficult to tell the difference between poor and good products.
However, Muzishare seems to be the most popular brand out of all of the others. The X7 is one of a number of tube amplifiers and speakers produced by the company. It costs around $1250 and has received high praise for both its design and sound quality.
Now that I’ve had a chance to spend some time with the Muzishare, I feel comfortable sharing my impressions with you. We can all see what everyone likes, but let’s get down to the nitty gritty.
|Speakers output power
|25W + 25W (RMS triode mode)
45W + 45W (RMS ultra-linear mode)
|Headphone output power
|300ohm with 900mW, use 270 like a basic divide to calculate the output power , for example 270 / 300ohm =0.9w for 300ohm headphone , 270 / 32ohm = 8.5w for 32ohm headphone
|100KΩ(Hifi exquis 1101017)
|4Ω – 8Ω
|280mV; 520mV (pre input)
|1% (1kHz) Frequency Machine: 15Hz ~ 30kHz (-1.5dB)
|22.5kg(Hifi exquis 1101017)
|260W(Hifi exquis 1101017)
|410mm x 335mm x 198mm(Hifi exquis 1101017)
|Power supply voltage
|110-120v and 220-240v ± 5% (50/60Hz)
- In this case, it was made by hand, using scaffolding welding (Hifi Exquisite 1101017) and two high-quality and wide-frequency response EI output transformers.
- Using a Z11 core toroidal power transformer that was made for this (Hifi exquis 1101017)
- It is used for both amplification and to drive the car.
- Use 2X12AX7 and 2X12AU7 as amplifiaction, and use them to make the sound bigger.
- Use a high-quality KT88 tube as a push-pull power amp lamp, with a switch that lets you choose between triode and ultra-linear connection modes.
- The triode connection mode is better for the voice, and the sound is more soft, delicate, and natural because of this. This type of connection is good for a big room because it lets the sound out and makes it sound more alive and open.
- It has a pure power amplifier, and it can connect to a separate pre-signal amp’s input to get power.
(Hifi exquis 1101017)
- It has a phono stage input that can be used to connect to MM Vinyl turntables.
- One button controls how much current goes through the power tube, and another shows how much electricity is in the room with an electric meter.
- Infrared remote control can do things (Hifi exquis 1101017)
- Power Mute has a delay function.
- This is a list of high-quality motor potentiometers made in Japan.
- The plug-in vacuum tube shield is very easy to put on (Hifi exquis 1101017)
The X7’s specs are briefly discussed here. Two 12AU7s are used for phase splitting and driving; one GZ34 serves as the rectification tube. There are four push-pull KT88s in the power portion.
Power, Triode/Ultralinear, and pre-in input switch toggles, two VU meters (one for each channel), volume and input selector pots are located on the front panel, from left to right.
It’s time to talk about the mode switch. With a 1% THD, this device has a Triode spec of 25W and an Ultra-Linear standard of 45W. There is a 1% chance that the wattage is lower than the maximum. Although it isn’t explicitly stated in any paperwork, it is fair to assume.
Changing the volume and muting the output are both easy to do with the included remote control. That’s all there is to it. Intuitive controls are OK with me as long as I can’t modify them after they’ve been set. I think it’s made of metal, and it has a lovely texture to it. Given the price, this was a complete surprise to me.
In addition, there is a headphone jack, but I didn’t get a chance to use it. Most people probably won’t use it.
What’s Inside The Box
It’s fascinating to see what’s going on within the chassis. First and foremost, the quality of the job is evident. A mix of point-to-point wiring and printed circuit boards is used to organize everything. The solder connections look to be of high quality.
Isn’t it interesting that there seem to be two distinct types of corrective actions: The GZ34 seems to be utilized exclusively for the front-end, while solid-state rectification is employed for the power tubes. This seems to be the case after a short internet search. Assuming that is the case, I believe it’s a fantastic idea. As far as I’m concerned, solid state is the best option for high voltage power tubes since it’s less susceptible to noise and issues. A GZ34 is as quiet as it gets on the front end, however.
Overall, the amplifier’s internals make you question whether this was actually accessible for only $1,500.. The quality and craftsmanship of this amplifier is comparable to that of other tube amps that cost at least twice as much. It’s time to speak about her voice now that her back is closed.
Just a brief note: I’ve heard that Muzishare amplifiers are built in the same plant as Line Magnetic’s European models. I’m not sure whether this is true, but if it is, it would explain LM’s world-renowned high level of craftsmanship.
Four inputs may be found on the rear of the device. One is a Moving Magnet phono stage, which I didn’t get to test. On top of that, there’s a label on the Pre-In jack to let people know that this jack is bypassing the volume attenuator.
The negative is shown in black on the binding post, while the output options of 8 ohm and 4 ohm are shown in red. Make that your speaker wires are connected to the right binding posts by paying attention to the color of the binding posts.
In my situation, I utilized the 8-ohm binding posts even though my speakers were rated at 6 ohms. Sound quality varies from person to person… or even among output transformers… but I like it.
Last but not least, we have a choice of input voltages (115 or 230 volts) and a power outlet. The power transformer is in the midst of the three transformers, while the output transformers are located on each side of the main transformer. As a result, unless you’re listening to your speakers at a high intensity for a lengthy period of time, you might anticipate the center casing to get much hotter.
Let;’s talk about the System
For this review, I just listened to digitally. This meant that I couldn’t evaluate the X7’s phono stage. On the digital side, I’m using Roon to broadcast to a raspberry pi. Audial S4 D/A Converter is getting a steady supply from that.
Two sets of speakers were used for speaker testing. The Q Acoustics 3050i floor-standing speakers were utilized for the majority of the evaluation. In spite of the fact that they are not on par with my reference speaker, they are capable of being used to objectively evaluate new equipment.
Note that before I began my critical listening, I swapped out every tube in the amp for one that I was more comfortable with. A Mullard Reissue GZ34 rectifier was used in its stead. A Tungsram 12AX7 and two GE Five-Star 5814As were installed in the preamp section. I’m using Gold Lion reissue KT88’s for power. These NOS tubes may not be the most costly, but they sound great and work well together. Compared to the original tubes, the low-end extension is significantly greater and the mid-range is even more complete (making female voices stand out in particular).
You must re-bias the tubes after inserting the new ones. Allowing the tubes to settle takes about five minutes, at the most. There are controls on the top of the chassis that allow you to pick the meters and change their bias.
How Does It Sound?
I have to confess that I was a bit jaded as I started writing this review. It feels odd to be evaluating a product created in China when there are presumably better alternatives available elsewhere. Muzishare, on the other hand, is a unique breed in the “Chi-Fi” environment since it combines knowledge with high-quality construction.
This song by Andrew Bird is a particular favorite of mine. Even though it’s not one of his most well-known, it’s one of my favorites because of the intricate country-folk soundscapes it creates.
Here, the X7 (in triode mode) excelled in two key areas. Because Andrew’s voice sounded so realistic, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody. I’d swear he was singing in the room with me if I didn’t know it was a recording. The recording and processing of certain songs made them more compelling than others, but I’d put it down to that.
Two of the album’s best songs follow each other. “Regular” and “Natural Disaster.” “Normal” puts an amplifier to the test, dancing from left to right and front to rear, to see how well it can follow motions and how well it can separate channels. The X7, it turns out, wasn’t a slouch. The one thing that let me down was the drumming, however. I was expecting them to go all the way, but instead they seemed like a last-minute addition. There you go, that’s bad news.
Switching to Ultra-Linear rapidly cured those issues, so don’t worry. However, Andrew’s voice lost some of its brightness. Suddenly, it seemed like I was listening to a recorded performance, rather than a live one. That, I can only infer that the X7’s output transformers weren’t capable of delving so far into a triode.
Back in triode mode, you’re treated with a variety of instruments scattered around the soundstage as you enter “Natural Disaster”. I love how the X7 does a great job of making each instrument stand out without focusing on any one of them. That’s a very good idea.
As soon as Andrew’s voice is heard, he’s exactly where he needs to be. If he isn’t, then either the speakers or theamplifier aren’t working properly. Thanks for your hard work, X7. Pace and timing are the focus throughout the remainder of the song. Is it anything that makes you tap your feet?
Yes, that’s correct.
The X7’s Ultra-Linear setting has been reinstated for the time being. Ultra-greater Linear’s extension in both directions seemed to work better with the upbeat, high-energy music I chose.
What “sounds fantastic” really implies is probably unclear to some. That’s all. It sounds like a real tube amplifier. In both directions, it goes deep (enough) and delivers voices with just the proper amount of intensity. I say deep enough because there is a lower mid-bass bump that makes the X7 seem like it goes lower than it does. The trained ear can hear it, even if it’s quite subtle. Since a result, this isn’t necessarily a negative thing, as I believe most people will find it enjoyable.
Ultra-Linear seemed like a better fit for this track, even though Triode mode is usually my go-to for this kind of music. That, to me, illustrates how convenient it is to have a switch you can turn whenever the mood strikes. On stage, with many vocalists and the band’s high intensity levels, X7 truly demonstrated its capacity to stay up. Bass guitar and percussion were especially highlights for me. Even though it didn’t go too deep, the X7 did a great job of capturing the live performance experience.
I decided to include a section on minor problems with the X7. However, I thought I’d mention them in the event that anybody was curious in my thoughts on the matter.
A clicking sound might be expected when switching from Triode to Ultra-Linear mode while the amplifier is running. Before making the modification, I recommend making sure there is no music playing and that the level is a bit lower.
While in Ultra-Linear mode, the X7 makes a clicking sound when it is turned off. Triode does not have this problem. A click is heard when the “pre-in” switch is turned from on to off or the other way around.
Muzishare X7 vs Doge 10
Doge 10 has a vastly enhanced 3D sound staging, higher audio quality, more warmth and emotion, as well as previously unheard micro-details. The Doge 10 is more melodic, less solid-state colored (which was a little too Chinese for my taste), and warmer but not caricatured tubish. Compared to the Muzishare X7. Even farther are the low basses.
Even though tube amps are known for their lack of bottom-end and overall power and oomph, the Doge 10 8 could persuade you to give them a try. With a dash of tube magic, this amp is a rock ‘n’ roll powerhouse.
In contrast, Muzishare X7 is recognized as an excellent value for the money. For those looking for something a little more versatile, this is a good choice. It has a remote control, a headphone output, and a preamplifier input at the very least.
Muzishare X7 vs Willsenton R8
Muzishare X7 features a phono preamplifier The majority of my music collection is in FLAC format or is being streamed through Tidal, so I’m relying less and less on vinyl these days. There are no VU meters on the R8’s front panel. Two VU meters are located on the front of the X7 and are used to bias the system.
While the R8’s remote seems to have additional features, it is still well-built.
Both cars are beautiful, but the R8 in black stands out the most. However, the X7 has a significantly smaller footprint and the same weight as the X6.
The quality of the product is clearly superior to that of a product that costs twice as much. When purchasing a tube amplifier, the weight of the transformers (which account for a large portion of the weight) is a significant factor in determining the quality of the amplifier.
Overall, I found the option to convert between Triode and Ultra-Linear modes of operation to be a great convenience.. It demonstrates the X7’s flexibility and why you should have a look at it.
Using a few simple words, I’d describe Triode mode as “softer” since it softens sounds and creates a “rosey” image. It beckons you to relax with a favorite drink and enjoy the music. Acousmatic and tiny jazz/orchestral groups benefit greatly from this approach.
You’re dealing with a whole different animal when using Ultra-Linear. Rock, pop, or even massive orchestras will sound great through it since it has excellent control over the low-end and is precise enough to capture every note accurately. It was always awe-inspiring because of its size.
Having saying that, there were a few bumps on the road. Smaller instruments and sections might become muddled up in orchestral music, which is very complicated. To play Berlin Symphonic music over a tube amp, I wouldn’t recommend the X7. Would that do? Sure. Is there a better alternative? Maybe.
In addition, I would want Ultra-Linear to have a bit more reach in either direction (bass and highs). This isn’t a criticism; it’s simply that in the most severe cases, I was a bit disappointed. I either didn’t notice it or it didn’t affect me for the most of my music listening.
In the end, I think the X7 is the clear winner. In the vacuum tube game, it’s a formidable challenger that will be hard to defeat without paying 2-3 times the money.
Let’s some of the most asked question collected from all over the internet.
Can I buy without all tubes?
Tubes have already been put in. Not sure if this amplifier can be bought without tubes.
What type of phono stage does it have, mm or mc or both?
It has a phono stage with MM.
How do I know its the upgraded version?
Make sure to open the bottom cover and look for the silver MUZISHARE capacitors.
Can I use el 34 tubes if I lower bias to 35mv?
I don’t think that’s good. The specs say that you can use 6550 power tubes. Mine is great. I put in all of the Gold Lion tubes. (Expensive) Still, I didn’t like how rough the front end was. So I used NOS vintage 1959 for the 12ax7 and 12au7’s that were made in 1959. This made this Amp sound great. It was very good.
Does Muzishare have an actual customer tech parts site that I can contact?
They say it is 7.8 inches tall. Inspect the ventilation.