"Now for Something Completely Different"
Today I ordered one of these...
Clearly K1000 owners like their Pass amps. They have in fact written such strong accolades, I felt compelled to learn more about what these amps have to offer.
Pass offers his mainstream products through Pass Labs (Aleph 3, Aleph 30 -- both out of production), and through a “kitchen table” company named First Watt -- where so far all amps have been built by Nelson Pass himself (F1, F2, F3, and the Aleph J -- a First Watt successor to the Aleph 30. Of these, the F1 is no longer in production).
In short, they're simple, low-power, Class A designs by Nelson Pass. But discovering their true value -- and individual uniqueness -- takes a little more digging...Could the F1 be the ultimate amp for K1000s?
Of these amps, the F1 and F2 could be classified as very unique designs (the F3 with its use of Jfets is also unique, but in a different way compared to F1/F2). Unique because the F1 and F2 are current amps (contrasted with the other 99.999999999% of the market served by voltage amps). The F1 offers balanced operation, while the F2 is closer to a SET in design (and reported in sound too).
My research included a number of e-mails and PMs, which I can not share without permission from their authors. The following from the Web, will however help you understand why I selected the F1...From Srajan Ebaen - 6Moons.com"Every unique circumstance requires a unique solution and that's exactly what the FirstWatt F-1 amplifier is: a unique address on how to get single-driver speakers to behave more full-range and linear than they want to if left to other devices."http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/f...irstwatt2.htmlhttp://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/f...irstwatt3.htmlFrom Nelson Pass"The F1 is a 10 watt per channel stereo amplifier operating in balanced single-ended Class A without feedback. Each channel has only one gain stage and draws a constant 100 watts.
It is a power trans-conductance amplifier (or power current source, if you like), replicating an input voltage into an output current.
A regular amplifier sends output voltage to the loudspeaker. This is not that kind of amplifier.
This amplifier ignores the elements in series with the load circuit, including back-emf, wire resistance, inductance and such, and creates voice coil acceleration in direct proportion to the input signal.
It is well suited to sensitive full-range drivers such as Lowther or Fostex, and allows easy use of parallel loading networks to tailor the driver response.
It has both balanced and single-ended inputs. The input impedance is nominally 80 Kohm, and the output impedance is 80 ohms. The output noise is around 100 picowatts (100 trillionths of a watt).
There will be only 100 copies of this design put up for sale."http://www.firstwatt.comhttp://www.firstwatt.com/downloads/f1_om.pdfWhat about my initial budget?
After all the puts and takes, I needed to up my tweak budget about $1,000 to make this purchase.