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11/21/14 at 02:32:56


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The Best Sounding Amplifiers... (Read 532 times)
Dave1210
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The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
08/02/14 at 19:30:15
 
Quoted from Nelson Pass and his F6 Owner's Manual:

http://www.firstwatt.com/pdf/prod_f6_man.pdf

Besides measuring reasonably well, the best sounding amplifiers:
-tend to be simple
-are intrinsically linear
-run deep Class A
-use high quality components

The best sounding amplifiers also pay close attention to:
-the amount and scope of loop feedback
-the use of degeneration (the other feedback) and output loading
-the balance between types of feedback
-the amount and character of distortion harmonics vs level and frequency
-the appropriateness of gain devices for a given topology


Does this make you think of any other amplifiers...hmmm...racking my brain...right on the tip of my tongue...
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« Last Edit: 08/02/14 at 19:32:37 by Dave1210 »  
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stone_of_tone
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #1 - 08/02/14 at 20:20:05
 
I have the First Watt site nearly memorized. I have so many times nearly ordered a First Watt from Reno Hi Fi. I am so happy with my Decware...I have not.
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Sony as Transport
Illuminati D-60
Audio Alchemy DTI-Pro
Audio Magic Mystic Reference I2S
Audio Alchemy DDE 3.0
Kimber Select 1030
Zen Select #76
Kimber Select 3033
Polk Audio LS-90
Tri-config/TipToes & Vibropods underneath Speakers
360 degree Rm Treats
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Brian
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #2 - 08/02/14 at 20:41:28
 
I somewhat remember what class A operation is, but when he said "-run deep Class A", what was meant by "deep"?

-Brian
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Dave1210
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #3 - 08/02/14 at 21:11:36
 
I'm not an amp designer, but I interpret this is as a significant percentage of the power output of the amp would run class A.  For example, if you had a 100 watt amplifier and 2 watts were class A and 98 watts were class AB, that would probably not be considered 'deep class A'.  But if 98 watts were Class A, then...

Again, that's my hypothesis...
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hdrider
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #4 - 08/13/14 at 03:22:59
 
Does this line of thinking also go along the lines of the late Harvey Rosenberg's ''Be very simple, be very stiff''? I have owned NYAL Moscode 300 (now with almost every mod George Kaye offers) and a Minuet in A (stock except for tubes and AC cord) and while these are not simple they sure sound good. His later writings were all along the lines of Steve's design/built philosophy, and while I bounce between my Zen SE84CS and my Moscode, I am in the process of selling darn near everything and getting ZP3, Pre and the 6 watt stereo Zen. It all seems to make sense, forgo the ''Hi-fi merry-go round'' and follow Steve & Harvey's advice. Nelson's designs seems to follow this path also, but solid state hasn't caught my ear yet.  Sorry for the run on rant, Chris.
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SE84CS, ARC SP-11, Krell SBP-32X dac, Oppo BDP-93, Sota Star TT w/ FR-64, Soundsmith re-tipped Monster Alpha Genesis MC, Shinnon Red, Sequerra Met-7, T-9,8-W, Fischer 500C, Stax Gamma Electrostatic phones
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Lonely Raven
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #5 - 08/13/14 at 15:27:54
 

Well said, Chris. It sounds like you're on the right path.
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Dave1210
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Re: The Best Sounding Amplifiers...
Reply #6 - 08/14/14 at 02:30:22
 
Chris...both Steve and Nelson are producing amps with simple circuits, and with great success (both sonically and commercially).  They seem to have similar philosophies, aside from SS vs. tube.  If you could filter out the branding on either website you might mix up the two designers/artists.  

If you ever wanted to do a comparison of tube vs. SS utilizing simple circuit designs, Decware vs. FirstWatt should be on your list.  Hats off to both for making great products.  

Cheers.  -David
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