Funny how life throws you curve balls. I just got a curve ball, a left hook and a knockout punch delivered to me in one swell foop. I can't believe I am writing this.
As some of you may know, after three attempts at designing a power amplifier to beat all other power amplifiers made, I threw in the towel and hired my dear friend Bascom King to see what he could do. Bascom is one of the best designers on the planet. Bascom agreed, the work's begun.
The original idea was an all MOSFET design, using the zero feedback, high voltage input stage I designed, the outputs configured anew by the good Dr. King (as he's known). All that changed with my last visit to Arnie Nudell's home.
While working on the final voicing for DirectStream with Arnie (which, by the way is finally finished), we got to talking about the new amp over lunch. Describing the circuitry to Arnie, he said something to me that has changed the course of this design, PS Audio and me personally forever.
"Why don't you man up and put a vacuum tube in the front end?" Oh lord. I love the sound of vacuum tubes, always have, but never had the courage to step up and put one in a PS Audio product. We've been hardcore solid state for over 40 years.
"If you really want to build a power amplifier that is the best in the world, one that truly matches DirectStream, you'll do what you know is right." Arnie's like that. He makes sense.
And so it is. I still can't believe I am writing this. When we approached Bascom with the decision he nearly fell over. "That was easy, I was afraid to even suggest it. It's the right thing to do if you want to make an amp to beat all others."
And so it is.