Switching supplies vs. analog supplies

August 1, 2019
 by Paul McGowan

2 comments on “Switching supplies vs. analog supplies”

  1. Hi Paul, this was a well timed subject as I am trying to make a purchasing decision, and believe that my questions would be of general interest to others. I appreciate the detailed explanation of the two types of amps, and was hoping you could speak to the sonic signatures/general characteristics of each and how they compare. I have tinnitus and have found my 20+ year old Martin-Logans are exacerbating the problem. I bought a pair of Monitor Audio Gold 300's with their MPD (Micro Pleated Diaphram) high-frequency transducers, a DirectStream DAC/Bridge II card (my second!), and searching for appropriate amplification. I posted this question on Audiogon, and more than a few people suggested a Parasound A23+ (with analog power supply) because of it's warm presentation. My other choice would be your Stellar M700 Mono Amplifiers (with switching power supply). Again, how would you compare the sound of the analog vs. switching? Would love to also consider a BHK, but it is not at all in my budget. Thank you in advance, really enjoy the daily videos!

    1. The Parasound is a very good amplifier but I don't think it's the equal of a pair of M700s. I think they would drive the MLs beautifully.

      Here's the thing. It's nearly impossible to generalize in the way you're asking. So much depends on the designer's chops and their aims and goals. For example, the M700s were hand tuned by Darren Myers to present music in a sweet and inviting manner. It was his single biggest goal with the amp and everything he did went into that endeavor. Another designer using the same basic building blocks of SMPS and Classs D amps would have an entirely different result. It would be misleading to judge an entire class of amps on the outcomes of designer's and their efforts.

      You need to focus more on track records and what the goals of the designers were.

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