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TDA1541A DAC with tube output

I have been kicking this idea around in my head for ages & now I think it is time to make it happen.

I have a ton of experience in this area so design/application was no problem.


The plan is to use the current Kompakt II design/case but with tubes replacing the current op amp output stages.

Imagine the current Kompakt II but with two tubes poking through the lid -  cool!

The tubes will be user replaceable without removing the lid.


To keep it safe it will be powered by a 16v external transformer plug pack style.

It also has a mains earth connection which I will use to ground the case.

The tube design is using E88CC (or 6DJ8/6922) in common cathode mode.

 I am using one tube per channel and running the two triode sections in parallel.

This will keep the output impedance nice & low so compatibility will be good with most amplifiers. The HT voltage is fairly low (60v) so I am using an IXCT 10M45S as an active plate load (CCS). This is very efficient and there is still about 50v across the tube which works really well with the E88CC’s. I tried lots of various tube configurations but the above design sounded by far the best. There are no longer balanced XLR outputs as this would require two extra tubes, lots more power, complexity & cost. Due to this the rear panel now has blanking grommets to cover the XLR sockets.


 I have had a final production version running for about a week now & I’m extremely happy with it. It definitely gives a bigger, richer sound compared to the op amp version. It is quite a fiddly built, longer build time & more costly parts so this has pushed up the price.

I’m not listing it as a regular production model but is available now as a special order. Cost $3,000.00

 lead time -  approximately one week.


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