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  • #16
    Maybe consider the gold Fosi class A/V amp from the rainforest. Seems close to what you're looking for. I have not heard it though.
    Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
    *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

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    • #17
      Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
      Are there any good, low wattage class A/B amps of small size that are noteworthy? For the intended use, small wattage needs, workplace use, so lower volume etc., I would think that one of those would be a nice sounding option. Kind of like the tube amp option, but easier to live with.

      I can't think of even one though to be honest, maybe a DIY option with an amp board from other sites, but I don't think that was what the OP wanted to do.

      I've heard this one only at a few PE events, but liked what I heard: https://www.parts-express.com/dayton...ifier--300-593

      May not be small enough though depending.

      I have, and still use the original Dayton T-amp, the one they redid from Sonic Impact or something like that... it has a curved top and can run off internal batteries... the PE one is black, that sounds good to me, kind of mellow and a little warm like an old A/B would. Source matters a lot though. Yeah, I'm no help.

      TomZ
      Tom, not sure if this is Class A/B or not, but it's definitely not a Class D or G amp.
      I built a Gainclone a few years ago, and loved it's sound quality. Sadly, I cooked one channel during crossover tuning.
      It would only cost about $20 to fix it, just have to get around to it....

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gainclone

      I think I hear a difference - wow, it's amazing!" Ethan Winer: audio myths
      "As God is my witness I'll never be without a good pair of speakers!" Scarlett O'Hara

      High value, high quality RS150/TB28-537SH bookshelf - TARGAS NLA!
      SB13/Vifa BC25SC06 MTM DCR Galeons-SB13-MTM
      My Voxel min sub Yet-another-Voxel-build

      Tangband W6-sub

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      • #18
        Interesting... I didn't know the history of the gainclone amp at all.

        TomZ
        Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
        *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

        Comment


        • #19
          Having built and gifted the third system based on a pair of Pico Neo and small inexpensive chip amp, I'll give a recommendation on the fx502a (tpa3250) as a good mate. It's not the cleanest sound, darkest darks, smoothest or highest highs, and certainly not the best resolution; you get the picture, but it's sins are more that of omission that additive. I'm an 80's kid from back when perfect sound forever began. Part of that perfect sound was the shrieking highs of the new cd and the transition to transistors with their technically superior, lower distortion, sound reproduction capabilities.

          Wish we would have had affordable good sounding options like these chip amps back then. It might have saved my bleeding teenager ears from being pierced by all that pins-n-needles technically perfect sound.

          With that said, I've been eyeing the Icepower offerings on the bay and for an Andrew more than your $200 budget, a complete 125x2 Icepower amp can be purchased. Yes, it may be more than you currently want but there's a good chance it sounds much better than the inexpensive chip amps you might wind up with and this amp will not be a limiting factor when upgrading. And this is a DIY site so you know what the upgrade bug feels like.
          http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...khanspires-but
          http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...pico-neo-build
          http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...ensation-build

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by djg View Post
            I was worried I was recommending a bogus amp, the Nobsound 2.1. So I dragged some stuff out to the living room to compare. The Nobsound, an SMSL SA50 2.0, a Sonance 75 watt per buyout amp, and a bunch of speakers. I did not have another 2.1 to compare, but I did run all three full range on the Zingers.

            I really didn't hear anything bad out of any of the amps. Some of the smaller speakers suffer in a large room while sounding fine in a nearfield 2.1 setting.

            I still recommend the Nobsound, I found it convenient to change sub parameters when switching between various speaker sizes.
            Cool of you to test and I love your speaker lineup! Just as likely that I got a defective unit and I may return it and try another as I would love this little guy to work ... a good $55 2.1 with sub power and xover adjustment is unusual and awesome for full range desktop. I got some Nobsound pots for speaker level controls for someone and they are excellent with no noise and high build quality. Not a reason to stop trying, but I think that is one of the problems with many of these cheap small chip devices ... the QC is not (yet?) on par with their larger counterparts. Even my 2 beloved DX3Pro's that now work reliably for me are of 4 that I've been through.

            Do you hear any hiss from the SA50?

            Comment


            • djg
              djg commented
              Editing a comment
              The Nobsound was quiet. The SA50 I know from previous use is quiet. I didn't check it last night. I wasn't trying to discredit you, I was worried I was hawking a poor quality unit, and I actually never did any comparison like last night. I'm plug and play. I try to discriminate between things I heard in the forum, and things I hear myself.

              Note the SMSL 24V brick I was using.

              I need to sell some of these speakers.

            • oldloder
              oldloder commented
              Editing a comment
              Djg, I certainly didn't take your response as an attempt to discredit ... far from it. Nor was my response to discredit you ... it was just another experience I happened to have had with the same product and wished to share it with the OP for the body of experiences with these sorts of products. I just went through some reviews and only a few other people had experiences like mine and so I may still exchange it for another to try again and would upgrade to the 24V power supply from the 19V package for that amp. I did see that one other person had the sparking issue when plugging the amp in with both the supplied power supply and one of my own ... definitely the amp. Glad to know they were both quiet too.

            • djg
              djg commented
              Editing a comment
              Sparking is inherent in the design. The way I deal with it is to always turn off the amp, and it helps to use a power strip and turn that off before pulling the plug out of the amp. I was switching the power numerous times during my comparison, and got sparks a couple of times when I forgot the regimen.

              The Dayton amp has the same feature set basically, but the wonky mix of controls and labelling has me favoring the Nobsound's almost vintage row of silver knobs.

          • #21
            Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
            Are there any good, low wattage class A/B amps of small size that are noteworthy? For the intended use, small wattage needs, workplace use, so lower volume etc., I would think that one of those would be a nice sounding option. Kind of like the tube amp option, but easier to live with.

            I can't think of even one though to be honest, maybe a DIY option with an amp board from other sites, but I don't think that was what the OP wanted to do.

            I've heard this one only at a few PE events, but liked what I heard: https://www.parts-express.com/dayton...ifier--300-593

            May not be small enough though depending.

            I have, and still use the original Dayton T-amp, the one they redid from Sonic Impact or something like that... it has a curved top and can run off internal batteries... the PE one is black, that sounds good to me, kind of mellow and a little warm like an old A/B would. Source matters a lot though. Yeah, I'm no help.

            TomZ


            Are you this the one you intended to link, Tom? When I click the link I see class D right in the title description.

            I was wondering the same thing about small AB's. Not the same small size factor but I have a half width and shorter than full size Emotiva a-100 that sounds great and I wonder about the Parasound Zamps. Still would like a smaller AB.

            Comment


            • #22
              Kornbread brought up the icepower modules and I happen to be building an amp with one right now. This is a 50asx2 along with a CMoy based preamp and Alps pot all crammed in a 4.5" x 2" x 8" aluminum chassis. If you built it as power amp it would be much more simple.
              Click image for larger version

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              My Builds - Vigor (Nola Brio Knockoff) - Overnight Sensations w/ Voxel - Speedsters in surplus boxes - Zaph B3N's in bamboo - Classix II in BR-1 cabinets - Dual TPA3116 D2 amp in an old music box - Mariposas

              Comment


              • djg
                djg commented
                Editing a comment
                You're a mad scientist.

              • silverD
                silverD commented
                Editing a comment
                Yep, two 3E Audio TPA3255 ( one as a power amp and one built in a NES), an icepower 125asx2 with pre, a dual mono 125asx2 with a pi 4 built in, this build and another 50asx2 and TPA3255EVM waiting to be built...

            • #23
              Originally posted by silverD View Post
              Kornbread brought up the icepower modules and I happen to be building an amp with one right now. This is a 50asx2 along with a CMoy based preamp and Alps pot all crammed in a 4.5" x 2" x 8" aluminum chassis. If you built it as power amp it would be much more simple.
              Is the Alps at the input? What model Alps? Build log?
              http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...khanspires-but
              http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...pico-neo-build
              http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...ensation-build

              Comment


              • #24
                Originally posted by Kornbread View Post
                Is the Alps at the input? What model Alps? Build log?
                Yep, Alps RK27 10k to CMoy with a gain of 2 to icepower module. I used this same preamp with a 125asx2 build I did earlier this year. I can provide you with more info if you are interested.
                Nate
                My Builds - Vigor (Nola Brio Knockoff) - Overnight Sensations w/ Voxel - Speedsters in surplus boxes - Zaph B3N's in bamboo - Classix II in BR-1 cabinets - Dual TPA3116 D2 amp in an old music box - Mariposas

                Comment


                • #25
                  Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
                  Are there any good, low wattage class A/B amps of small size that are noteworthy? For the intended use, small wattage needs, workplace use, so lower volume etc., I would think that one of those would be a nice sounding option. Kind of like the tube amp option, but easier to live with.

                  I can't think of even one though to be honest, maybe a DIY option with an amp board from other sites, but I don't think that was what the OP wanted to do.

                  I've heard this one only at a few PE events, but liked what I heard: https://www.parts-express.com/dayton...ifier--300-593

                  May not be small enough though depending.

                  I have, and still use the original Dayton T-amp, the one they redid from Sonic Impact or something like that... it has a curved top and can run off internal batteries... the PE one is black, that sounds good to me, kind of mellow and a little warm like an old A/B would. Source matters a lot though. Yeah, I'm no help.

                  TomZ
                  Lots of mfrs have made these mini stereo systems for years. This is just a picture off amazon, no idea of what class, watts etc.

                  But they are around used I'm sure.

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                  • #27
                    Originally posted by oldloder View Post



                    Are you this the one you intended to link, Tom? When I click the link I see class D right in the title description.

                    I was wondering the same thing about small AB's. Not the same small size factor but I have a half width and shorter than full size Emotiva a-100 that sounds great and I wonder about the Parasound Zamps. Still would like a smaller AB.
                    Yes, that's the one I intended to link to. It is class D but does sound pretty good. I was offering another suggestion to help confuse the original poster.

                    When class D amps with higher wattages started getting popular, I think folks became intrigued with the low cost for the watts available, and the high efficiency, and some steered away from traditional AB amp tech.

                    Maybe we'll see a few more old school type amps hit the marketplace as folks seek higher quality audio in the future.

                    TomZ
                    Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
                    *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

                    Comment


                    • oldloder
                      oldloder commented
                      Editing a comment
                      OP is probably clear ... figures, 'twas I that are easily confused ... lol ...

                  • #28
                    I ended up purchasing one of these - SMSL SA100 Bluetooth 5.0, 50W/Ch@4 Ohms for ~$75. It's a TPA3116D2 based amplifier, and the form factor is a little different than most which adds a little visual interest. It'll be mainly used for some background music while working in the office along with some small Tang Band W3-1364SA based towers. The Amazon description says something about a replaceable tube, but it must be a copy and paste error from some other amplifier.

                    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

                    Comment


                    • djg
                      djg commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Would you report back on your purchase after listening? I've looked at those and wondered.

                  • #29
                    Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
                    Are there any good, low wattage class A/B amps of small size that are noteworthy? For the intended use, small wattage needs, workplace use, so lower volume etc., I would think that one of those would be a nice sounding option. Kind of like the tube amp option, but easier to live with.

                    I can't think of even one though to be honest, maybe a DIY option with an amp board from other sites, but I don't think that was what the OP wanted to do.

                    I've heard this one only at a few PE events, but liked what I heard: https://www.parts-express.com/dayton...ifier--300-593

                    May not be small enough though depending.

                    I have, and still use the original Dayton T-amp, the one they redid from Sonic Impact or something like that... it has a curved top and can run off internal batteries... the PE one is black, that sounds good to me, kind of mellow and a little warm like an old A/B would. Source matters a lot though. Yeah, I'm no help.

                    TomZ
                    Many ways for good small A/B. Cheap is used. You can find older small integrated amps out there on e-bay that were stellar. I have an older Creek I may eventually sell. NAD, Rotel, even Naim and Music Fidelity. I once had a little desktop Kenwood integrated with a CD player that ran class A 10W or AB for 40. Really sweet. Should have kept it.

                    New units like Cambridge are very good. but now big and expensive. There is a lot of data on how to build a chip-amp as well as the technology allows. I built a couple A/B based on cheap kit boards I got from China, but modified as best of my knowledge from reading the likes of Cordell, Self, Pass, Leach, etc. as a learning experience to see how good I could get. Best was not far from a 'Blameless" but with 4 pairs of outputs instead of one. Too bad I tested it to destruction. Are you going to buy a $100 true hi-fi class AB or A amp? No. I learned enough to build a MOSFET based amp that I may put back in service as the new "upgraded" Parasound 2124 seems a little compressed even though it is twice the power.

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      A blast from the past, Tyger 23's original 2.1 chip amp project. He jumped the gun and made a PCB for a 2.1 chip amp way before the Chinese invasion. He offered it here on PETT.

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