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DNA Stellaris

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by yage, Feb 3, 2016.
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  1. ogodei
    I don't know too much about Audio Note. 
    I don't know too much about Audio Note, they're from your neck of the woods?
  2. yage
    There are actually two "Audio Note" companies. The original Audio Note was founded by Hiroyasu Kondo and is based in Japan (a.k.a.  Kondo Audio Note, Audio Note Japan). The firm out of the UK and headed by Peter Qvortrup (Audio Note UK) is a former manufacturing license holder. This post from the depths of the Audio Asylum is Kondo-san's side of the story.
  3. Frihed89
    Since several (all?) of you have ordered the Stellaris, I suggest you engage Donald in a discussion of exactly what capacitors (electrolytics and film) he is using.  AN(UK) has a several different grades of electrolytics. Enquire about using the newest line of electrolytic capacitors (Kaisei): He suggested i use this type for the cathode bypass caps.  He knows what is best.  For the coupling caps, you might ask him about the sonic comparison between the Copper and Silver caps.  There is a large price difference.
    Just a suggestion.
    I envy you guys.
  4. smial1966
    Great suggestion Frihed89. You'll be pleased to know that Donald has a batch of Kaisei capacitors incoming for evaluation purposes and will advise Stellaris purchasers accordingly. [​IMG]
  5. Frihed89
    Stellaris (and any of the others), could you let me know.  By PM is fine.
  6. listen4joy
    i wonder if the cost jusify it over the stratus, very expensive amp, i plan to buy the stratus in the future but this.. too much money for me.
  7. Frihed89
    Listen4joy: that depends on your ears, brain and pocket book.  I am 100% certain that it will be an improvement.  How much of an improvement, and are the marginal sonic benefits greater than the marginal cost (=Price)? Go back to the first sentence. 
    But of course you can't hear it first, can you?  That's always the rub.  Since Donald says this is a cost is no object amp, and i know a little bit about how he works, i am certain that he is out to make it the best amp going.  At some point, when he's through testing/listening to critical parts and wire, he will broadcast what he hears in the final version.
    However, as I noted earlier, I think he would be willing to work with perspective buyers on some parts.  You have to ask him.
    Good luck.
    smial1966 likes this.
  8. ogodei
    Has anyone checked in with Donald on the amp recently? Any news?
  9. smial1966
    I don't think that Donald would mind me sharing the info below - received yesterday via email.
    "Thanks for checking in. Yes, much progress has been made: Chassis have been made and are now being powder coated, faceplates made and will be silk screen printed next, transformer covers are done, Audio Note balanced input and output transformers have been received. I'm still evaluating and fine tuning some of the component types and values. I received the Audio Kaisei capacitors and am giving them a thorough listen and comparison.
    Once I receive the finished chassis and faceplates, I can start assembling the first unit. I have many people on the Stratus order list in the meantime, so the first Stellaris assembly will probably happen in late September. Will keep you posted".
  10. ogodei
    Outstanding. [​IMG]
    Don't know quite where I am in the build order but end of year sounds hopeful.
  11. Frihed89
    It's a 3-stage SET amp.  In a 2-stage amp, the output tube is directly coupled to the driver tube. Thus, the driver and output tube are, together, a single stage.  The driver could be composed of a follower arrangement, with 2 small triode tubes, but the number of tubes is not the issue.  A mu-follower or SRPP or cathode follower all have 2 tubes in the driver stage.  Both the Stratus and Stellaris use a coupling capacitor between the driver and the output tube in each channel. Two stage amps generally require local, but not global feedback. 
  12. Donald North Contributor

    A stage is an active stage of amplification, which are then cascaded. A tube gain stage can be a simple cathode-biased triode or SRPP or cascode or mu-follower, as examples, and can consist of a single tube section or multiple tube sections or hybrids (tube & solid state). The Stratus and Stellaris are 2-stage amplifiers: The first gain stage is provided by the 6N1P; the second stage is provided by the 2A3. How these 2 stages are coupled (direct, capacitor, transformer) does not change the count of how many gain stages are in the amplifier. Both gain stages are cathode-biased triodes with bypass capacitors paralleled across the bias resistors to AC ground them and negate their degenerative local feedback within the audio spectrum.
  13. Frihed89
    I understand your point and it is correct.  However, the distinction i made has become is used by some DC owners and builders to differentiate their amps from cap and inter-stage coupling in the way i put it.  In that case it's probably best to focus on the method of coupling the driver to the output tube, as you do. 
    I am sorry to have confused readers.
  14. ogodei
    Looks like a Stellaris prototype was seen in the wild last weekend somewhere on the west coast, getting rave reviews from the crowds.  Apparently it's the antidote this world needs for the scourge of lean headphones.

    Seriously it was getting some serious praise at a meet out there and I'm now getting anxious to hear it. Wonder if Donald is still checking in here at all and might give us an update?  Or has anyone received recent word on firs delivery time frames?
  15. Sorrodje
    Yea. I heard it . I had the opportunity to visit @Donald North last week with @n3rdling and we had some times with Donald's K1000 and my Utopia, all plugged to his Stellaris. I came back to Donald's Table during last Saturday meeting and this time with a HD800SD and my own source and music and I defintely fell in love with this damn amplifier. My impressions ( warning : meeting impressions without direct comparison with my own Stratus) were really positive. Same DNA house sound but with all technicalities cranked up : Bass slam, staging, resolution and clarity. I heard Craig Uthus Studio a few minutes before and the Studio is imo a bit too lean and sharp with the same HD800SD whereas the Stellaris is THE sweet pot between body , smoothness and technicalities.
    At Donald's place , we saw the new Silver faceplates with "Stellaris" instead of "Stratus" and I think Donald is waiting from nice cover for the Audionote trafos but he will explain it better than me. 
    I want one . Price is out of my budget for now though. Life is a bitch :)  
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