Home | Audio Reviews | Audio Show Reports | Partner Magazines | News     


Enjoy the Music.com

audioXpress Magazine

May 2023


Make It Worth It!
Thankfully, products announced about a year ago are finally becoming available.
Editorial By J. Martins


audioXpress Magazine May 2023


  In this Glass Audio special issue of audioXpress we are proud to offer two high-quality tube amplifier projects from two renowned tube experts from both sides of the Atlantic. The first project by Menno van der Veen is another amplifier designed under the auspices of the author's TubeSociety initiative. The other comes from Thomas Perazella and in this case details a remake of a famous David Berning ZOTL amplifier. Both are of remarkable quality and value to all tube/valve enthusiasts at a time when it becomes increasingly more risky (and expensive) to build your own projects, unless we already know that the results are truly exceptional.

We are also privileged to be able to share the knowledge of renowned tube audio expert and book author Peter Dieleman as he demystifies some common myths in tube circuit designs. To have original articles of this level and quality on tube design is getting to be increasingly difficult even though the enthusiasm around tubes has not diminished in any way.

A year ago in this May issue I was sounding the alarms for the dramatic supply chain constraints affecting the availability of new tubes, as the invasion of Ukraine and the sanctions imposed on Russia had a significant impact on the global supply of raw materials and packaged tubes to the audio industry. There are very few tube manufacturers left, and those remain constrained by the supply of parts and materials. A year later, those few suppliers still active have been able to re-establish barely sustainable stock levels but, as predicted, with significant price increases. So, it's not surprising that we see fewer new builds being submitted for publication.



It's increasingly not worth it to build another average amplifier when it has become painfully obvious that once we burn through existing new-old stock (NOS), it will never be possible to replace the tubes. Some might say that there are still plenty of tubes to last decades of keeping up with a fun and rewarding Hobby — and that might be true. But maybe the results of such efforts are better delivered by following designs with recognized merits.

In audioXpress we review and evaluate projects that involve tubes on a regular basis, but increasingly few are of interest for publication since they are fundamentally a review of designs that have previously been addressed and published. A word of appreciation is due to our technical editor Jan Didden for the diligence and persistence to go through that review process and have a much greater perspective of the rich history of this publication to find valuable concepts and ideas.


audioXpress Magazine May 2023


Alternatively, as found in this issue, you might as well pursue a rewarding build of the extraordinary high-power (300 Watt into 4 Ohm), bipolar, Class-AB, monoblock audio power amplifier that Bruce E. Gillingham concludes this month with details of the complete system, featuring an original precision Bias Controller, and its performance measurements.

And if objective, measurable audio quality is truly the goal, consider jumping directly to Class-D and the Hypex NCx500 amplifier module that Stuart Yaniger reviews. As his measurement and analysis in this issue reinforce, this is a new reference performer that just needs a power supply, wiring, and your choice of chassis. The result is so close to perfection that one would likely degrade performance to add some originality or color — maybe by combining a tube preamp stage?



If it is of any consolation for tube audio enthusiasts, neither transistors nor the latest Class-D modules are easily sourced and manufactured these days. Many of the most popular devices used in audio amplifiers have long been discontinued and are increasingly difficult to find in consistent quantities. Even from the larger semiconductor brands, it's important to know what is actually still being manufactured and what is simply available from existing stocks.

Given the remaining component supply challenges and manufacturing delays that resulted from the global pandemic, we are now seeing the products announced precisely a year ago finally becoming available. Most of the Class-D amp module manufacturers still offer six months or more lead times for volume orders.

So, whatever the chosen path, make your design truly worth it.



J. Martins




Subscribe To audioXpress Magazine

Subscribe To audioXpress Magazine
Click here to subscribe to audioXpress magazine.









































Quick Links

Audiophile Review Magazine
High-End Audio Equipment Reviews


Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Ultra High-End Audio Reviews


Enjoy the Music.TV


Editorials By Tom Lyle
Viewpoint By Roger Skoff
Viewpoint By Steven R. Rochlin
Various Think Pieces
Manufacturer Articles

Show Reports
Pacific Audio Fest 2023 Report
T.H.E. Show 2023 Report
HIGH END Munich 2023
Australian Hi-Fi Show 2023 Report
AXPONA 2023 Show Report
Salon Audio Montréal Audiofest 2023
CanJam Singapore 2023 Report
Florida Intl. Audio Expo 2023
Capital Audiofest Show 2022
KL International AV Show 2022
Toronto Audiofest Show 2022
CanJam SoCal 2022 Show Report
...More Show Reports


Audiophile Contests
Cool Free Stuff For You
Tweaks For Your System
Vinyl Logos For LP Lovers
Lust Pages Visual Beauty


Resources & Information
Music Definitions
Hi-Fi Definitions


Daily Industry News

High-End Audio News & Information


Partner Print Magazines
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
HiFi Media
Sound Practices
The Absolute Sound
VALVE Magazine


For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics


Contests & Our Mailing List

Our free newsletter for monthly updates & enter our contests!




Home   |   Industry News   |   Equipment Reviews   |   Press Releases   |   About Us   |   Contact Us


All contents copyright©  1995 - 2023  HighEndAudio.com and Enjoy the Music.com®
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.