Statement 450 Mono Amplifier
For several years the VAC Phi 300 amplifier has been earning a reputation among
perfectionists as of one the finest power amplifiers available, routinely
matched with speakers in the quarter million dollar class. Lately we've been
wondering, what would happen if we were to remove all of the constraints and
design an amplifier without any regard to cost, without any regard to size, and
without any regard to weight?
The answer is the VAC Statement 450.
The sound of the Statement 450 literally caused our jaws to drop. If the Phi 300 is one of the world's best amplifiers, then the Statement 440 is no less than the redefinition of the term "World Class". It is not a subtle improvement. It is a whole new world.
VAC President Kevin Hayes describes its sound as follows: "This is an absolutely startling jump in sound quality. The voices, images, and dynamics are as solid as a concrete wall, and there is an order of magnitude more detail being presented, which manifests not only in hi-fi terms, but in emotion and, for example, being able to picture the expressions that play across a singer's face. It's not a subtle difference, or even a moderate difference; it is a quantum jump."
Statement 450S Stereo Amplifier
This is the second amplifier in the premium Statement Series, which is designed and manufactured with full devotion to music and no regard to manufacturing effort. VAC's "first principles" design features: increased precision of control over the drive/output circuit; architectural control over stray interactions within the amplifier; architectural control of mechanical resonances; and avoidance of electrically large, slow components via VAC's very high speed parallel (VHSP) process. The fully hand-wired system has an external power supply which provides 400+ joule source of dual mono energy to the 225 watt/channel beam power audio chassis. Both chassis are machined from 0.25" aircraft aluminum for a rigid basis, and carry 105 lbs. of custom-wound U.S. magnetics, and couple via a proprietary tripod that controls the flow of vertical energy inputs and dissipates lateral energy inputs.
Sigma 160i Integrated Amplifier
The VAC Sigma 160i is a true integrated amplifier with proper line state and phono stage. MC and balanced inputs optional.
Available in black or silver fascia, gold or chrome knobs.
The VAC Phi™ 300.1a is an extremely potent amplifier with power, superb definition, and great control. Its eight beam power output tubes yield 300 watts in dedicated mono mode or 150 watts/channel in stereo mode at the choice of the user. Front panel level controls may be engaged to aid in balancing biamplified systems. Both balanced XLR and single-ended RCA inputs are provided. The chassis is machined aluminum, with the tubes beautifully showcased behind 0.75" glass. Also included are standard 12 volt triggers.
The Phi 300.1a is VAC's finest amplifier. It is based on our direct coupled input & driver circuit that results in the fastest, fullest, most detailed sound that we have ever achieved. You will be surprised by details in your recordings that you had never heard before. The ambience and retrieval of reverb and decay information is particularly surprising.
The 90 pound VAC Phi 200 is a 100+ watt per channel version of
the VAC Phi 300.1a.
The Phi amplifiers produce the areas of beauty typically associated with good vacuum tube designs, but also go well beyond this, producing bass impact, speed, and dynamics that have converted many adherents of solid state design.
The Phi 200's wideband power is developed using the KT88 beam power vacuum tube, exploited to fullest advantage by custom wound 21 section output transformers, each weighing 14 pounds. The Class A direct-coupled low-mu triode input and driver stages are those developed for the Phi 300. The combination results in fast, full, detailed sound. You will be surprised by details in your recordings that you had never heard before. The ambience and retrievel of reverb and decay information is particularly startling.
Signature Preamplifier MK II
The culmination of eight years' research and development, this
is VAC's finest preamplifier. Its new and unique circuit follows VAC's "first
principles" design philosophy, wherein we look beyond conventional wisdom to
discover what a preamplifier really must do to preserve musical life. As usual,
the answers are distinct from anything you've seen or heard before.
Through its principal outputs, the Signature Preamplifier contains no coupling capacitors from input to output. No coupling capacitor hinders the purity and detail developed by the hand-wired direct-coupled Class A1 triode tubes. Additionally, no loop negative feedback is used; the output interface is completely stable and free from dynamic interactions with the load. In addition to five standard line inputs (four when phono is fitted), a fully balanced input is provided. Fully balanced outputs are present, as are dual standard RCA outputs. Balancing is achieved by differential triodes driving a special output transformer. This design ensures a true balanced signal, capable of driving even the most cruel professional studio equipment, something impossible with cathode followers and totem circuits. In addition, the transformer output may be used with unbalanced loads. In this manner, galvanic loops and interaction between source & power amp feedback loops are eliminated, allowing for the most liquid, dimensional sound.
Renaissance MK III Preamplifier
The VAC Renaissance Mk III Preamplifier is a development of the preamplifier section from the highly regarded VAC Phi Beta Integrated amplifier and provides balanced and single-ended input and output capability. It is completely hand wired, and all switching is accomplished via high purity silver contact mechanical switches. The six active circuit elements are twin triode vacuum tubes, biased for Class A1 operation. Connectors are Cardas premium Rhodium type. Remote control of volume and mute is provided; in the mute state, the VAC logo changes from blue to red. Cine Bypass is included for use with volume controlled sources. The heavy power supply is external, with a 6 foot detachable umbilical cable. The optional MM/MC phono stage uses six triode elements with passive RIAA equalization. Variable gain (42/62 dB) and variable resistive loading are provided. Excellent results are obtained with pickups having nominal outputs from 0.2 mv to 5 mv. The standard fascia finish is black lacquer with gold metallic flake over a VAC-machined 10mm aluminum plate. The faceted and domed countersunk aluminum knobs are also machined at VAC and finished in 10 micron gold. Silver with chrome is optional at added cost.
Royal Power Supply
The VAC Royal Power Supply was initially developed for the
KingSound electrostatic loudspeakers, and has found
application with other brands that use external 'wall wart' style power
The power supply can have a major impact on the sound of electrostatic speakers. In our auditions, typical wall warts give a sound that is too distant, too lean, lacking in intimacy and dynamics.
In a sense, the polarizing supply for an electrostatic loudspeaker is somewhat akin to the magnet used in a dynamic driver. As you know, there is a profound difference in sound character between the various materials (AlNiCo, ferrite/ceramic, field coil, etc.). The magnet for a dynamic speaker and the polarizing supply for an electrostatic speaker are in essence like the foundation of a house, or, if you prefer a different but slightly less apt analogy, like the springboard for a diver. For best results they have to be right, and they have to do their job in a stable, unvarying manner under all conditions.
Since the real world is never quite perfect, any deviations from perfection must be simple rather than complex, as more complex errors result in higher order distortions which are unmusical and easily detected by the ear. In the case of electrostatic loudspeakers, there are actually two factors. One is the quality (i.e., stiffness and cleanness) of the polarizing voltage; the other is the amount of the polarizing voltage. Varying the voltage will change the subjective sound quality; it is perhaps loosely like varying the magnetic flux level in a dynamic driver.
The goal of the VAC Royal PSU is to provide a very clean, unvarying, and dynamically stable supply of the optimum voltage; to do this, we have designed a stabilized, wide bandwidth, high current linear supply.