I tried to reply to the original thread I spoke about this on, unfortunately it has been locked...so anyway...
As I mentioned before I grabbed one of Alan’s March Audio amps, the 125W one. (I have 4 ohm speakers). @March Audio
So here is my review of sorts....
The unit comes well packed and Alan kept me up to date of what was going on with it, build, burn in etc. I was a little surprised of the weight of the unit (4-5Kg?), coming from a big iron background where most amps are over 20kgs. The case is solid, as are all the connectors, it is a well-made bit of kit. The most common comment I heard when showing friends and family was, ‘is that all coming from that little box?’
Now this is where Alan needs to probably stop reading…. Yes I know it has THD + N of 0.0015% and an Output Noise of 30uV and a Signal To Noise Ratio of 118 dB but I have absolutely no idea how these characteristics contribute/translate to what I am hearing…So look away Alan… 🙂
The first thing I noticed when listening to music was the control, it seems to just pick the music up by the scruff of the neck and play it, there are no errant sounds waffling about, everything is played almost regimental and with great precision. It sounds cleaner as a result - not clearer but cleaner there is no muddiness to the music – although the instruments sound timbrally the same. It is mainly on single note stringed instruments (Tears in Heaven, Girl from Ipanema) and female voices (Rebecca Pidgeon, Susan Wong, Kina Grannis) that you notice it most - they seem so much more precise and controlled. Maybe this is to do with the lower noise floor the amp exhibits?
The bass has become more prominent now as well, or I’d dialled it up on the speakers for the valve amp. (Genesis 501 with Servo Amps on the bass drivers) so I’ve been trying to dial that back in. Not sure if a by-product of the extra power the speakers now have? It is definitely more punchy on the bass. Bear in mind this is the baby amp of the range. The marimba on Ed Sheerans Shape of You is so tight now and the beat stops on a dime.
I am still coming to terms how such a small thing can do what it does so effortlessly and there virtually no heat coming off of it.
One thing I thought was strange is that it has the left and right binding posts/inputs as if you are standing behind the unit. It also has quite a definite click and almost bonk noise when turning it on and off through the speakers, not sure if normal in these amps? (it is not loud but noticeable). The power switch takes a bit of getting used to as well. The branded USB Key with the manual on it is a nice touch, although at barely half a Mb, I am wondering if some test tone FLAC's or something could be put on the other 4Gb of space?
Am probably splitting hairs on those quibbles above, as I am very, very happy with it so far. I will give it a few weeks and hopefully build an audio memory, then switch back to the Valve amp and see how it fares.