DartZeel NHB-108 Model One B (+SCNP) vs. anything from Pass Labs


Highly specific, yet has anyone does this A/B ?

And sure ... if you have done ANY testing with the 108 B go ahead and list it, yet I know the Pass line so that is my reference here ...
Thank you
C5f3a9ec 3479 4f98 85e0 152555186fffbrianlucey

the dart 108 is my favorite stereo amp. i owned it for 8 years, and at one point owned a pair of them. i owned it before and after the SCNP upgrade and that is significant in terms of controlling a speaker at higher SPL's. the 108 has a super sweet and extended top end, transparent and natural timbre and tonality, and articulate bass. very cohesive and balanced. will bring out the best in a speaker appropriately matched to it.

I'm a person with tube amp tendencies, and view the dart 108 as the best solid state amp for a tube lover. the dart's very low parts count and minimalist circuit gets out of the way of the music. you hear music, and not like listening through a bunch of circuits.

you do not list your speakers or room size. the dart 108's are reasonably flexible in speaker synergy but harder to drive speakers in larger rooms might be beyond it's safe design envelope.

the Pass Labs would be on my personal very short recommended next level of solid state amplifiers below the dart 108. the Pass Labs has a natural tonality and listen-ability.

personally i've not done head to head compares Pass Labs to the dart 108. you can look at my system page and see my current dart mono block amplifiers.....which are the only amps I prefer to the 108.

good luck with your decision.


Nice reply, thanks.   Beaututiful room there, I see why you sold the 2 x 108s :)

Speakers are Sonics by Joachim Gerhard with all new crossovers, externally mounted, top quality caps in the same design as stock.

I don’t need much power, modest room, perfectly tuned. Using modified Cary 211 FE amps now with tubes and caps/resistors/etc that make it an amp well beyond what anyone has heard. I lack for nothing ... just want to hear the Dart. If SS was ever an option, that seems the one. Less power consumption, no maintenance. We shall see.

www.magicgardenmastering.com

I know the Pass line, don’t love it, but respect it and know the sounds. DartZeel is the best SS amp for linear tube amp lovers? That’s me. We shall see. I will buy a used one.

Anyone else? Really appreciate it ...

Brian,

thank you for the kind words.

my current speakers do not allow any bi-amping, although at 97db, 7 ohm they don't need it either. the single 108 stereo did a fine job even in my large room. the big mono's do an even better job. i used the pair of stereo 108's back in 2004-2005 when i owned Von Schweikert VR9SE's which did allow for bi-amping. it did work very well.

reading about your Sonics by Joachim Gerhard speakers they appear to be a good match for the 108 at 90db, 4 ohm. i read the Stereophile review about them and would expect that pairing to be really nice.

I would expect that the dart 108 would retain some of the tube magic from the Cary while lowering the noise floor and adding articulation to the low registers.

looking over your website I was impressed. i'm familiar with some of your work and can see where you are coming from with your interest in the dart 108. i will look forward to acquiring more of your catalogue.