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  1. #1
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    tube amp placement in audio rack

    for an audio rack that is open on all sides [front, back + both sides] what would be the desired distance between the top of a tube amp and the bottom of the shelf above it -- or is it not recommended to put a tube amp anywhere but the top shelf?

    the shelving material is 2" thick wood.

    in my case, the top of the amp is 8.0" with tubes. the output tubes are two 6c33c-b which do put out a decent amount of heat... so, would a shelf with 12.0" or 12.5" inches of total space giving the amp ~4" of space above it be too little? how about 10.0" or 10.5"?

    i would think with all sides open there would be plenty of air convection to dissipate the heat?

    thanks!!!
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  2. #2
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    open on all sides with 4" plus above, you're good !
    Cheers ! …. Dave

  3. #3

    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    ARC wants 7”-8” from the top of the Ref 3 phono to the bottom of the shelf above it. I wouldn’t put a tube amp in a rack personally. Buy an amp stand and put your amp on it between your speakers.
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  4. #4
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    I personally wouldn't go any less than that 4" top clearance. I was thinking 6" but if 4" is the tallest you can get.
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  5. #5

    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    Quote Originally Posted by aKnyght View Post
    for an audio rack that is open on all sides [front, back + both sides] what would be the desired distance between the top of a tube amp and the bottom of the shelf above it -- or is it not recommended to put a tube amp anywhere but the top shelf?

    the shelving material is 2" thick wood.

    in my case, the top of the amp is 8.0" with tubes. the output tubes are two 6c33c-b which do put out a decent amount of heat... so, would a shelf with 12.0" or 12.5" inches of total space giving the amp ~4" of space above it be too little? how about 10.0" or 10.5"?

    i would think with all sides open there would be plenty of air convection to dissipate the heat?

    thanks!!!
    4" should be fine. I'm running my Conrad-Johnson LP70S with KT-120s (which prevent the tube cages from being used) in my rack with about 4" from the shelf above it, and I've had no problems with cooling whatsoever.

  6. #6
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    Just give yourself peace of mind and put it on the top shelf.
    Doug



  7. #7
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    thanks for all the help!! just doing some homework on component placement to make room on the top shelf for a possible new addition.

    a 4" clearance should be fine -- holding my hand at 4" above the tubes it was somewhat warm but the heat had dissipated pretty well... at 2" above the tubes i could have kept it there all day but it was pretty warm.

    amp stand would probably be ideal but the amp is an integrated which would result in cable chaos.
    kanjiroba yak + roon rock > t+a dac8 dsd > almarro a318b > viking acoustics berlin r mk2 | alp-tone audio analog cables

  8. #8
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    Quote Originally Posted by aKnyght View Post
    ...a 4" clearance should be fine -- holding my hand at 4" above the tubes it was somewhat warm but the heat had dissipated pretty well... at 2" above the tubes i could have kept it there all day but it was pretty warm.
    just to test this out, i used some scrap wood to mock up a shelf enclosure open in all sides...

    while the heat from the tubes at any moment is not all that great, over a period of time the bottom of the shelf 4" above the amp tubes does get quite warm. so, while I think the amp would be perfectly fine the accumulated heat on the rack shelf above is probably not advisable... looks like an amp stand or top shelf placement is the best choice here.

    thanks again for the all help here.
    kanjiroba yak + roon rock > t+a dac8 dsd > almarro a318b > viking acoustics berlin r mk2 | alp-tone audio analog cables

  9. #9
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    Thank you for the update.

    I always error on the side of too much ventilation, especially for tube gear. Heat kills components and now I’m even using AC Infinity T9 component coolers. Depending on amp, top of bottom placement works great.
    Last edited by joeinid; October 31, 2019 at 09:17 AM.
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  10. #10

    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    I had a Mcintosh MC2000 on the bottom of a rack once. Added a small fan and the rack stayed cold to the touch. With the plethora of USB fans around today, even a tiny silent one can easily move enough air for it not to be a concern. Just remember to turn it on when you turn on your amp.

  11. #11
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    Mine is 5 inches from the top, enclosed on the left and right, with an open back. Gets warm but is fine. I tried the top of the cabinet, but the cats got curious...
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  12. #12
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    Re: tube amp placement in audio rack

    I would think a bit of curiosity while they were on would be a lesson learned, LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by Edward View Post
    Mine is 5 inches from the top, enclosed on the left and right, with an open back. Gets warm but is fine. I tried the top of the cabinet, but the cats got curious...
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