Monoprice Monolith Liquid Platinum - By Alex Cavalli
Apr 9, 2018 at 12:19 PM Post #32 of 3,876

JWahl

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The LP using an external PS is going to be a good chunk of it.

Also, if you look carefully at the picture of the prototype board, there are actually two circuit boards stacked closely together. I didn't notice this at first, myself.

As I understand from past reading, the LP is using less power and less class A bias, which doesn't require as much heatsinking further saving space and cost.

This is more why I said I prefer the single ended as a matter of personal preference. I'd rather pay a similar amount of cost for deeper class-A bias and the additional necessary heatsinking than trading that for balanced circuitry. But I do understand that there is more market demand for affordable balanced amps. I wouldn't mind eventually seeing a true mini Liquid Crimson, single ended with deep class-A bias and heatsinking. It could still have a (big) external power brick and come in under $1000, I think.

That being said, I still think this has the potential to be killer at the price point.
 
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Apr 14, 2018 at 7:24 PM Post #33 of 3,876

PopZeus

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Well, if there ever was going to be a reason to invest in a tube amp, this would be it. Damn it.
 
Apr 20, 2018 at 2:11 AM Post #39 of 3,876

Luckbad

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I was was taking a gander at the Platinum yet again today and a couple of things stood out regarding the size:
  • Offloading the power supply to external saves a ton of size/weight. It will also potentially cripple some of the amp's potential without some really good cleanup once inside the chassis. I'll be using a linear power supply with the Liquid Platinum for sure.
  • Looking at an old shot of the Platinum seems to show two PCBs stacked on top of one another. Am I crazy? That's what I think I'm seeing in the shot, which would certainly account for most of the rest of the size difference.
    • Edit: Yep, looks like that 2017 prototype was stacked. See the last picture.
    • Edit #2: Actually, looking closer, I think that lower PCB is just an unpopulated board to keep it offset from the table. Shrug. I suppose there's some stuff going on underneath too, but I'm no amp designer.
  • And, of course, shrinking (nearly) everything down to SMD components. The Liquid Crimson has a lot of electrolytic capacitors and through-hole components.
  • Also found a Cavalli CanJam 2017 thread worth reading with comments from @runeight.
I think we have our answer to: "How can a balanced Liquid Crimson be smaller than the single-ended Liquid Crimson?" Stacked PCBs (actually think that's not true), outboard power supply, smaller components, intelligent layout.

This is a gut shot of a Cavalli Liquid Crimson:

index.php


Here's a picture from about a year ago of the Platinum:
9923047.jpg

9885082.jpg
 
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Apr 20, 2018 at 3:05 AM Post #40 of 3,876

stimuz

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I think we have our answer to: "How can a balanced Liquid Crimson be smaller than the single-ended Liquid Crimson?" Stacked PCBs (actually think that's not true), outboard power supply, smaller components, intelligent layout.

I also think having monoprice on production is a big part. I have a feeling monoprice does a lot of massdrop's stuff too, there's just so much overlap between the two to be coincidence, but either way they definitely have experience with it.
 
Apr 20, 2018 at 7:45 AM Post #41 of 3,876

ZenErik

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Looking forward to trying this amp this summer. Good chance it’ll be my end game for a while as I’ve been looking for a balanced hybrid. The Lyr 3 puts me off from considering the Mjo2 because why not wait for the Mjo3 at this point. So Liquid Platinum it is.

It’s not the prettiest thing I’ve seen, but the look has grown on me since a bit. A bit more ‘I don’t mind it’ rather than ‘that thing is hideous’.
 
Apr 20, 2018 at 11:26 AM Post #42 of 3,876

runeight

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I was was taking a gander at the Platinum yet again today and a couple of things stood out regarding the size:
  • Offloading the power supply to external saves a ton of size/weight. It will also potentially cripple some of the amp's potential without some really good cleanup once inside the chassis. I'll be using a linear power supply with the Liquid Platinum for sure.
  • Looking at an old shot of the Platinum seems to show two PCBs stacked on top of one another. Am I crazy? That's what I think I'm seeing in the shot, which would certainly account for most of the rest of the size difference.
    • Edit: Yep, looks like that 2017 prototype was stacked. See the last picture.
    • Edit #2: Actually, looking closer, I think that lower PCB is just an unpopulated board to keep it offset from the table. Shrug. I suppose there's some stuff going on underneath too, but I'm no amp designer.
  • And, of course, shrinking (nearly) everything down to SMD components. The Liquid Crimson has a lot of electrolytic capacitors and through-hole components.
  • Also found a Cavalli CanJam 2017 thread worth reading with comments from @runeight.
I think we have our answer to: "How can a balanced Liquid Crimson be smaller than the single-ended Liquid Crimson?" Stacked PCBs (actually think that's not true), outboard power supply, smaller components, intelligent layout.

This is a gut shot of a Cavalli Liquid Crimson:

index.php


Here's a picture from about a year ago of the Platinum:
9923047.jpg

9885082.jpg

Almost right. :)

The daughter board is a heater supply. I didn't like the original so I changed it for the show last year. The new board doesn't need the daughter board bc the heater supply has been finalized.

There are more electrolytics on the new board as well as a few other changes.

Not only has it been compressed, it's been compressed enough to go from an SE amp to a balanced amp.
 
Apr 20, 2018 at 11:56 AM Post #43 of 3,876

Luckbad

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Thank you for the clarification, @runeight.

This is the most exciting amplifier in recent memory.

Thank you for continuing to design in retirement and working with Monoprice and Massdrop to make the amps affordable.

I realize opinion is divided on the look, but I think the Liquid Platinum is gorgeous. Functional and utlitarian without sacrificing elegance and overall aesthetics.
 
Apr 20, 2018 at 12:44 PM Post #44 of 3,876

PopZeus

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I really got used to the blocky matte black look to Cavalli's MD collaborations. Tbh, I don't mind the color scheme of the Liquid Platinum but the basic shape strikes me more like a portable amp with the slant-tapered edges, which given its size is not really the case.
 

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