Vacuum tube from 1970's has a wonderful rendezvous with 21st century high-resolution audio DAC technology!Designed by microwavemont in Japan
Notice Apr.24: Due to the current international shipping delay, now only the domestic order is accepted. I will recover it ASAP shipping status recover.
What is it? High resolution audio (24bit/96kHz) capable USB bus-powered sub-miniature vacuum tube headphone amplifier. Precaution: Please do not have big expectation for vacuum tube. Vacuum tube ca...Read More…
High resolution audio (24bit/96kHz) capable USB bus-powered sub-miniature vacuum tube headphone amplifier.
Precaution: Please do not have big expectation for vacuum tube. Vacuum tube can provide ultra mellow sound, but has more high noise level than modern class-D. Please choose another big company product if you prefer "prefect zero noise".
I have learned a bit about vacuum tube technology through my hackaday project. Here I put several feedback from this project. The employed tube is a kind of "last decade tube" in the history. The tube 6418 is quite small but still pentode made by Raytheon. It can produce very nice and warm sound as same as the other tubes, so I completed this amplifier with several circuit modification.
Fully soldered USB DAC with vacuum tube amplifier, which firmware (for AK4490) is already written and finished in fully drilled enclosure.
Wonderful rendezvous between 1970's USA made last minutes vacuum tube with sophisticated 21st high-resolution DAC technology!
High resolution DAC (Asahi Kasei AK4490) with USB-I2S receiver (SA9023). This nice combination provides maximum 24 bit resolution with 96 kHz sampling rate.
The AK4490EQ is a new generation Premium 32-bit 2ch DAC with VELVET SOUND™ technology, achieving industry’s leading level low distortion characteristics and wide dynamic range with six types of 32-bit digital filters, realizing simple and flexible sound tuning.
The function of AK4490 can be controlled through Arduino sketch, together with on-board Arduino boot loader loaded Atmel ATMega88PA. The default firmware sketch is uploaded to my Github. Detailed function implemented in AK4490 is explained in the datsheet. In order to upload your own audio setting written by Arduino sketch, USB-UART interface (CP2102) is included in this item. Yes we have a joy to tune sound!!
Full USB bus power. Just connecting the USB cable (mini USB) is enough to drive everything. Newly re-designed voltage booster (5V to 30V) has no annoying noise related with USB line any more. On-board 1.6 MHz (no audio interfere) voltage booster creates high voltage for Tube and Op-amp operation.
Outstanding excellent vacuum tube, 6418, provides wonderful sound. You may think it is outdated? No, I bet you will be so impressed by its wonderful mellow sound!
No need to install driver for Windows/OSX. Just connect cable and set the sampling rate/bit resolution to 96 kHz/24bit is enough to enjoy High-resolution sound! The fully completed and tested PCB board is fit in the fully drilled metal enclosure. USB-UART interface (CP2102) is included for uploading your own customized Arduino firmware. iPhone (or any smartphone and iPad) operation is NOT supported with this amplifier due to power draw increase. Only PC/Mac operation is supported.
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