Thanks for the intro on the amp TJ! I can share a bit about it for those that have an interest. This amp is a single-chassis design in custom-wooden enclosure with copper internal shielding and features a matching outboard power supply. There are dual power transformers for the input and driver stages, as well as the output stage (the 211 or 845). The amplifier employs 6SN7’s in an SRPP stack as the voltage amplifier into a pair of EL34’s running in triode-strapped mode which offer exceptional linearity. This "amplifier" then feeds a pair of 211 or 845 tubes (the amplifier is switchable) for exceptional bandwidth, transparency and power delivery. Both the amplifier and power supply are 100% point to point wired and use premium internal components (Audyn True Copper coupling capacitors, an all film capacitor power supply, Schottky diodes, etc.). It presents what I feel is the best performance from these tubes. Power output with the 211 is conservatively rated at 25 watts per channel and with the 845 is rated at 35 watts per channel (with modest "soft-clipping" exceeding 40 watts). 4,8 and 16 ohm speakers can be used with the 211, and 2, 4, and 8 ohm speakers can be used with the 845!
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I have just spent five hours listening to Aric's ultimate SET dual chassis 211 amplifier and have to say that I have found it mesmerizing experience.
It delivered maybe the best taut, deep, tuneful bass that I have heard from a tube based amplifier. It's overall macro-dynamics and punch could fool into thinking it was a much more powerful P/P design. Yet, the 211 in a SET circuit gives you the timbre beauty and "inside glow" like a 2A3 tube but with even a bigger more accurate sound-stage, "meat on the bones" imaging, and a sweet/sparkly top end. You can also use 845 tubes, which I'll try later.
If you are a lover of SET amplifiers, you might want to consider auditioning this new super amplifier from Aric's stable of amplifiers. This will be a fun review for me to write, indeed.
@grannyring - Under a wave of construction at the new location and also prepping to get married next month has invaded on some of my website updates :-) I do have lots of photos of both the outside and internals I would gladly share, it seems A'gon still has not provided the function to attach photos on these threads? Aric
If anyone would like me to e-mail them some picture and more details of the "Super 211 SET" amplifier, please feel free to message me using the "Contact Us" at my website www.aricaudio.com and I will share anything I have :-)
Best wishes, Aric
I'm a lucky S.O.B. in that I get to hear so many wonderful pieces of audio gear because of doing professional reviews. Listening to this amplifier is turning out to a special experience. It is hard for me to pull myself away from listening to my system with the SET 211 amplifier powering it. It offers such dynamic power and control with the beautiful colors/tonality and pureness of the best SET amplifiers I have ever heard. There is no "BEST" in audio, many great pieces/personal taste, however, this ranks at the very top level of performance and how much you would have to spend to exceed it's performance, if you could, would cost ungodly amounts of $.
"Why do they use SRPP input stage and EL34 driver?" This is simple. Out of all of the other stages I experimented with- these simply provided the best drive, lowest output impedance, and best blend to the 211 power tube. The SRPP can drive the EL34 (in Triode mode- which is much different than Pentode, or UL mode as the drive requirements go up). The EL34 in Triode mode can provide the necessary swing (200V P-P) to drive the grid of the 211, and the low output impedance overcomes Miller Factor (capacitance at the grid of the next stage). It also has excellent linearity in Triode mode! This overcomes slewing, lack of headroom- and most importantly- the driver stage running out of steam before the power tube is in A1. This results in headroom, full frequency response and maximum power output. I hope this helps! Aric
Hi @aricaudio ,
Thank you for reply.
I know that some designers use 300B tube to drive for 211.
300B is even more linear and transparent, but it is much more expensive than EL34, and not everybody like 300B sound signature. EL34 should sound faster.
I never tried SRPP input stage. In my 300B DIY amplifier I use single half of 6SN7.
But I have 6F6 driver in triode mode. And 6F6 is more easy to drive compared to EL34.
I heard 6SN7-6SN7-KT88 SE amplifier and it sounded very slow. One half of 6SN7 is not strong enough to drive KT88.
Hey Alex- no problem! Two things with DHT’s that are harder to overcome than with Pentodes are C Miller and also grid current. Most of these tubes aren’t linear unless you can drive the grid positive with a high voltage swing. Otherwise the top and low end suffers and is what most people think when they refer to a 300B (or other DHT) as "woolly in the bass", or "lacks high end sparkle but the midrange sounds great!". That’s where C Miller has its effect is on the frequency extremes. A 6SN7 cannot drive the 300B’s grid into A1 unless it’s in SRPP mode or is direct-coupled. It can still sound good but you’re not hearing the 300B’s full potential. On the KT88, I assume the 6SN7 stages were cascaded? In that case, I can imaging how two coupling caps and two stages could bring too much of a harmonic structure to the sound and become dull and lifeless. However if two stages of 6SN7 were configured in Mu Follower, Cathode Follower, or SRPP you could benefit from the lower output impedance to "swing" the grid of the KT88 better and avoid the overly complex harmonic signature. Best, Aric
@teajay Terry, are you listening with one of your Tekton sets? If so, which one(s)? I have the Double Impacts and am looking for something to enhance my music listening while still keeping them as the front five for my home theater.
@aricaudio, I know you said you hadn't posted photos but I'm not seeing the cost or any other details on the Super SET on your site.
@teajay Great read, as always. It's really nice seeing your having more 'space' for the reviews now that you are being published on 6Moons.
!!!Congratulations!!! to Aric Audio on the 211 build.
May I be so bold and make a couple of suggestions now that you are reaching a much, much wider and (I believe) more sophisticated audience across the world.
First, add one or more speakers of a different design (than the Tekton Design speakers) to your stable.
Second, add music from Genres outside of Jazz.
Keep up the terrific work. Your contributions are appreciated!
Thank you @david_ten for the kind words! I also second your motion on adding some more variety to the musical styles in the review ;-) @teajay - Thank you for posting such a great review! Below is the link to the same: https://6moons.com/audioreview_articles/aric/
great review @teajay i appreciate the deep dive into the tech. It helps to differentiate from other products for us plebiscite’s. Also, it helps to know where our money is going.
@aricaudio congrats on adding another great product to your line up. I am still enjoying what I have from you but I am really envious of the new case work. It looks fantastic!
Just wanted to share that the review Super SET 211 demo has just been purchased by Toska Audio located in Highland Park, IL. If you live in this area I strongly suggest you drop by to hear this superlative amplifier. The owners, Pete and Pat, have some beautiful speakers to match up perfectly with Aric's creation.