Any expereince with Coincident Frankenstein II Amp

Currently driving Coincident Super Victory speakers with the Topaz Wyetech amp and the results are amazing. I had heard that the Frankenstein II full chrome version is best in class for my speakers and Hovland pre. Any expereince with these amps and or feedback is welcome!
check out Arthur Salvatore's site.
Charles1dad owns the Franks and has posted here a few times. He's most certainly a fan.

I also admire Israel Blume's work. I have Coincident Super Eclipse IIs, now with Lamm ML2.1s.

Hello Paul,
To my understanding the Wyetech Topaz(211 tube) is considered one of the true great SET amplifiers. I`ve never heard it but have no reason to question it`s highly regarded status. The Frankenstein I know well(owned almost 2 years) and it is a masterpiece built by Israel Blume. I won`t go on and on about it (I`ve done that enough before). As mentioned by Metralla there are pevious threads, with many informed comments from owners.The franks would be fabulous with your Super Victory speakers. Give Israel a call, he`s very friendly.
Hi all,

I want to chime in because I'm currently looking for a power amplifier to drive Coincident Super Eclipse mk. 3 speakers. My pre is a Counterpoint SA-5.1. Both SE III and SV has a 92 db sensitivity and high impedance (14 ohm and 10 ohm respectively) so choices should be similar on paper.

So far, I have limited number of amps with Coincidents. Recently I've tried a friend's Cary CAD-572SE which is rated as ~20 w/channel, on my system and was not satisfied with lower frequencies. But I must say that it was a somewhat uncontrolled situation. The devices were here and there some on carpet some on an other one, some connected with stock cables etc. You get the point. I'll take the Cary's soon and make a more controlled try.

After that experience I become skeptical about the low powered monos. When I told this experience and request an advice, Blume told that the Dragons would be the best option. So my skeptical-ism even grows. But mine was a brief e-mail, and maybe Blume thought that I'm a power-hungry audiophile, so wanted to be on the safe side.

Soo, I'm still searching and currently my lowest powered option is a 24w/channel Manley Neo/Classic 300B.

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No amplifier can be everything to everyone. The Frankenstein is a brilliant amp but it won`t be ideal for everyone`s taste or system(nothing is). For what you`re seeking, the new Dragon MKII would suit your preference i.e. more bass weight and power. If yor music is more electronic bass,synthesizer,heavy rock and at high volumes go with the Dragon mono blocks. The Franks do bass very well but it is`nt the ultimate bass-power amp. The Franks are nearly peerless when the priority shifts to purity of tone, organic -fluidity. tactile presence and nuance with an exceptionally low noise floor. For the acoustic jazz lovers like myself.this amp is extraordinary. As always it just depends on what you want. Higher powered amps will ultimately have the bass/large scale bigger volume advantage, but not the inner detail,liquid-flow and the 3D tactile presence IMHO.
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Different amp methodology has made huge differences with my coincidents (triode, ultralinear and pentode). Surprsingly, I'm most happy with 120 watt monoblocks in pentode (grommes g-101/a runing 6gk5). 20 watt triodes are my least favorite (EL34), Ultralinear is ok (EL34) and my 3 watt pentodes are nice (6bm8). I never use more than 2-3 watts but the 120 watt mono's have seemingly unlimited bass control.
After my initial message I had an experience with Frankenstein and my whole point of view has changed.

Recently a friend of mine has bought Frankenstein amplifier and yesterday I had an opportunity to try it with my equipment. All I can say is this amplifier is INCREDIBLE. After what I read from internet, I was expecting a good sound but this is beyond my expectation. It easily drove my Super Eclipse's, sound dial of my pre was about 9 o'clock and it was a huge sound. Frankenstein and Counterpoint SA-5.1 synergy was excellent. For example all three person present at the audition did not like the Doge 8-Frankenstein combo.

Anyway, my search is over, I'm looking for a Frankenstein from now on. :)
I`m glad you had the opprotunity to hear the Frankenstein MarkII under the best conditions(your own system!). It`s truly a brilliant SET amplifier. I wish you the best of luck in obtaining one soon.

Although you may not be looking for a new linestage, the Coincident Statement Linestage is equally stunning.

Best Regards,
Firochromis, don't rule out the Manley's. I have them and love them. I haven't heard the Frank's, though. It would be nice to hear from someone with experience from both amps in the same system. My Manley's are partnered with a Manley Steelhead pre and the combo is pretty stunning. I'm sure there is better out there-- but I am not interested in changing. Coincident gear may be the better value after the Manley price increases.

I have owned the Franks Mk II for a couple of years now, and I also matched them for a while with the Hovland (a great preamp) until I finally got few months ago the CSL preamp, which is first class. For me the Franks are the best SET amps I know... but, of course, I don´t know all of them (but I have been around audio for 40 years). What I like of the Franks is something simple: they reproduce live sound (or at least that is what I feel when I listen to them). Not the last world in low bass, of course, but everything else is beyond good.
I have owned the Franks Mk II for a couple of years now, and I also matched them for a while with the Hovland (a great preamp) until I finally got few months ago the CSL preamp, which is first class. For me the Franks are the best SET amps I know... but, of course, I don´t know all of them (but I have been around audio for 40 years). What I like of the Franks is something simple: they reproduce live sound (or at least that is what I feel when I listen to them). Not the last world in low bass, of course, but everything else is beyond good.
Jacano, Very accurate description of the Frankenstein MKII amplifier. Considering it`s power of 8 watts the bass performance is "very"good but not the best available(physics matter). Where it sepeartes from other excellent amps is the sheer realism, emotional connection with the music and pure, natural beautiful tone/overtones. Voices and instruments are just utterly real. After nearly 2 years of ownership my admiration still grows(this is true of the Coincident Statement Linestage also).
Best Regards,
Hi people,

Finally I get the Franks from my friend, and don't worry we are still friends :)

Since my last message I reshaped my listening room and it is much much better now. My Rega Maia3 was sounding just nice and I was really enjoying the music. A few weeks ago I gave a call to my friend and we chat for some time, than he told me that he is considering to sell the Franks for some "real life" expenses. Well, they are mine now :)

Nowadays I'm re-exploring the music. Maia3 was a great solid state amplifier but I notice now that some passages were not merely "sounds" but, cellos on the lower notes. "Hey look, double basses accompanying to cellos" or "Oh, that flute on the background... was it there before". You get the point. Listen Decca's, Mercury's, some ECM's with this amplifier and you are in the concert hall.

For the records, mine is the earlier black faceplate version. As all Frankenstein hunter's know, earlier version has a 4 dB gain advantage over the recent shiny version. Since, earlier I felt insecure about my speakers' relatively low sensitivity (92 dB), I asked Blume if the earlier version is better for me. He said, the recent version is superior on every level- build quality, reliability and especially sound and 4 dB advantage is meaningless. So look for the shiny version if you have the option, otherwise grab the first Frankenstein you see, like me. :)

After over 2 years of ownership this superb amp still surprises me with sublime music reproduction(I use the Shuguang Treasure 300b).
You`ll enjoy this amplifier for many happy years.
Best Regards,
Hi Firochromis,
Great amp!~ Congrats. been enjoying the Franks MKII like the ones you just purchased for over 3 years. I have also heard the new ones. If there is a sonic difference I honestly couldn't hear it. Others do, but in any case the difference are very subtle at best.

I just picked up a pair of Franks direct from Coincident a few days ago. They're matched up with a pair of Total Victory V (latest version). For now I'm using the Statement Phono Stage as full function pre but will soon be adding the Statement Line Stage.

Although the amps and speakers are still breaking in I can say that without a doubt this is the finest system I've ever had - not even close. The sound is so vivid that at times it's downright startling. The Franks far, far outshine my previous Manley Neoclassic 300b amps - at approx half the retail cost and not even broken in yet! They're also extremely hassle-free - only 3 tubes and auto bias.

The only thing I need is a bit more gain, particularly for my lowish output CD player - hence my plan to add the Statement Line Stage.

Israel Blume is really working magic these days. In today's high end audio world his components are screaming bargains -- particularly his electronics, which all have insane power supplies and are built like veritable tanks. I didn't see anything at RMAF which comes anywhere close to his equipment for anywhere near the price....
I am curious how the Franks compare to Wavelength Cardinals or Napoleons? I have always heard great things about both, am getting more efficient speakers so will be on the set amp hunt. Thanks.
Arthur Salvatore(High End-Audio,com) once wrote that the Wavelength Cardinal was perhaps one of the "very best" 300b SET amps he`d ever heard. He states that the Coincident Frankenstein is simply
the best amp he`s ever personally heard with appropriate speakers.

I heard the Cardinal monoblocks with the Vaughn speakers at RMAF this year and the sound was quite good! this amplifier has always had excellent reviews over the years.
I`ve not heard the Franks and Cardinal head to head.

These things will always be subjective, but as an owner of the Franks(listening nearly daily for over 2 years) this amplifier is just OUTSTANDING! In the truest sense of the term.Thus far in my personal experience I will say this amp is the most natural-organic and realistic sounding yet, and I`ve heard many good ones.

It comes down to priorities, if like me you want pure,natural and honest reproduction of full tone with harmonic/overtone preservation along with exceptional dynamics(micro and macro) ultra low noise floor and tiny nuance retrival, this is your amplifier(Shuguang Black Treasure 300b tubes).Acoustic instruments and voice are devine.
The Frankenstein MKII is a stunning achievement by Israel Blume(so is the Statement Linestage).
Sincerely and Best Regards,
Always wanted a pair of these...any of you Frankenfreaks or Izzy have anything to say about tube life & reliability?
Pehare, I`ve had zero reliability issues with either the amplifier or the Treasure tubes. This is with very heavy-frequent use.
Good Luck,
Yes, the Franks are good brand new out the box.
In terms of final-ultimate performance you are at only roughly 80% currently, you will gain another 20% in S.Q. improvement by 300-400 hour range(I`m not engaging in hyperbole at all, this was my experience).

If the Franks startle you now, just wait.
Did you select the Treasure Series upgrade?
Yes Charles1dad, I have the Shuguang black bottle treasure series tubes. I think "startling" best describes the overall sound. Sometimes a voice or instrument will come in that sounds so life-like that I am literally startled. I am definitely noticing improvements as the amps and speakers break in. As I said the only thing I think I need is more gain - which will come when I add the linestage (they're currently out of stock, not surprisingly!) Although they sound far better than the Manleys did, they have less gain. I assume they're designed to mate with a higher gain linestage like Coincident's own. It's funny, I get the impression that amongst the many impressive Coincident products it seems to be the linestage which has garnered the most praise - and that's the last one I'm adding to my system!
I think the Statement Linestage gets a bit more praise due to it being such an universal component(can place in any system). The Franks are of course limited by speaker matching, thus not as flexible/universal.
All the atributes you`ve noted so far will be noticably improved with the addition of the Statement Linestage.
I have the Frank's and Wavelength Triton nce ( new century edition ).I'm using Total Victory IV Loudspeakers.
Both amps are very good,For the selling price of the Frank's there is nothing that I have listened to that can better it.If youhave around 5K for an amp the Frank is a no brainer !
Now the Wavelength, my Tritons are 15-16 watts compared to the 8 watts of the Frank's.My opinion and take it for what it's worth is the Triton's have the advantage, sound stage is wider and little deeper. There is more air between the notes and the window is a little clearer.It could be due the extra power of the Triton's but I find myself listening to the Triton's more.Both amps are very good and the Wavelenght's are more expensive.I don't know how Gordon does it but when you put WE 300b's in the amps it's the best amp I have listened to.
I have Treasure Black Glass for the Frank's but I prefer KR300b xls "S" shaped tubes. Frequency extremes are better bass is tighter and the sound stage is closer with out being harsh.
Everyone hears different and this is only my experience and your mileage may vary.Both amps are top notch and will please anyone with the right loudspeakers.

Abill, you are experiencing ultra 300b heaven LOL.
Personal taste will always rule(but you have it covered it seems). What`s the difference between the new Triton Century and the Cardinal 300b series?
Is your Triton the Signature version?

The tube comparison is interesting as some who have used both tubes prefer the Treasure 300b and others like the older KR XLS and the VAIC tubes(hard to find these days).
Israel said the Treasure and KR were equals in sound but the later/current KR tubes were unreliable. You must have the better older batch model.
The Western Electric 300b seems to be circuit/amplifier depedent as opinions are so mixed.
Beat Regards,
I have Wavelength Cardinal Signature XS's. (Wavelength 45's silver, also). I have never had an opportunity to hear "Franks" yet, nor any other 300B amp (or 45) before my purchases of them. Franks, Cardinal, Triton are all good choices, given appropriate speaker matings. Such difficult choices in life... :)
Very nice amps you have choosen.
What`s the diffeference between the Triton and Cardinal series given they`re both 300b amplifiers?
Best Regards,
I've actually never heard the Tritons, tho I am agreeing with Abill, if that makes any sense. I can only imagine:)
Can somebody tell me the difference in sound between the Shuguang Treasure 300b and the new Psvane 300b? I mean when implemented
in the Frankensteins?
I asked Israel Blume that very question when I spoke with him at the RMAF last month. He said there`s minimal difference in sound quality and thought they were essentially interchangeable. Any other op[nions?
I have a lot of respect for Israel Blume and his superb products(just look at my system page). Your speaker is very similar to the T-5 model.This speaker is 85-86 sensitivity,4 ohm load that dips below 3 ohms and has a high phase angle in the midrange.

I don`t believe an 8 watt SET amp that lacks 'any' negative feedback is a good match. Your speaker would seem to require a high power SS amplifier that can drive lower load impedances and has some NFB in the circuit.

The Frankenstein is superb, but only if matched with the proper speaker.
I absolutely adore these amplifiers, but reluctantly just put mine up for sale in order to get more power for my Coincident PREs.  I previously had Coincident Super Eclipse IIIs and would not consider a different amplifier for those speakers.  In any case, I thought I'd bump the thread in case anyone's on the lookout for a pair.  Mine have over $1500 in upgrades over stock.
If I ever buy more sensitive speakers, I'm going to hate myself for selling.