If you’re in the market for a high-quality two-channel vacuum tube pre-amp designed by one of the undeniable legends of the audio industry, you might want to hold off until July. That’s when Bob Carver LLC, “The Vacuum Tube Amplifier Company,” is planning to release the Black Magic 20, a little 20-watt stereo (or 40 watt mono) tube amp that boasts a lot of big features.
From the press release:
“The VTA20S represents Bob’s latest and greatest thinking on vacuum tube amplifier designs. This amplifier has many deluxe features not normally found in lower cost units” says Bob Farinelli. A screen voltage regulator and DC restoration circuit minimizes crossover distortion and output tube power dissipation. The 1.5 ohm output impedance coupled with current and voltage feedback loops also allows the amplifier to listen to the room via acoustic feedback from the speakers. “The room to speaker to amplifier interaction delivers a huge acoustic space and allows us to believe the performance could have existed in another time and in another place. It sounds so beautiful!” Says Bob Carver.
As for the specs:
•Input Impedance: 20K ohms in stereo, 125K ohms in mono
•Nominal Voltage Gain: 26dB (into 8 ohms)
•Input Tubes: 12AX7B
•Output Tubes: 1 complementary pair of EL84Ms per channel
•Rated Power (Stereo): 20 Watts
•Rated Power (Mono): 40 Watts
•Speaker Impedance: 4 to 16 ohms
•Noise: Better than 96dB A weighted ref. into 20 watts
•Frequency Response: 8 Hz to 40 kHz (-3dB)
•Full Power Bandwidth: 26Hz to 43 kHz without filters
•Distortion: Less than 0.5%
•Generator Source Impedance: 1.5 Ohms
•Weight: 17 pounds
•Color: Black with silver fleck and silver trim
•Country of Origin: Point-to-point hand wired in the United States
And while the $2,100 price tag of the VTA20S “Black Magic 20″ may sound like a chunk of change for many a consumer, that’s actually quite affordable for a tube amp of this pedigree. Again, look for it to ship sometime in July.