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What is the BEST Class D, TPA, TDA chip amp available?

Discussion in 'New Gear - Values' started by HiFiJeff, Oct 18, 2018.

  1. HiFiJeff

    HiFiJeff Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    788
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    So I have been reading so many different threads and reviews on so many different chip amps. And the more I read the more the waters are getting murky for me. I just want to my hands on the best unit out there that is plug and play ready and reasonably priced. I am enjoying the FX 502S PRO but after reading a members post about how he likes the Allo Volt+D made me wonder more. Maybe I should just go with that since I like the single chip version Allo Volt+. I don't know. Just wanted some opinions.
    Thanks.
     

     

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  2. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    26,463
    Location:
    Angel Station, Alabama
    I like the Volt+D a lot for it's clean uncolored dynamic musical involvement, and can recommend it as a good value from Volumio.
    The power brick is a separate purchase and determines actual power capability.
     
  3. mkane

    mkane AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    6,319
    Location:
    103 miles N. of S.F.
    Get a TI EVM, breadboard with your choice of power supply (linear is recommended) and have at it. Dirt cheap.
     
  4. cipriano

    cipriano AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    267
    Dayton DTA-1
     
  5. grantly

    grantly AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    148
    Location:
    Nashvegas, TN
    I haven't mentioned it much on any of the forums, but I love my Nuprime STA-6 class D amp. It's not nearly as cheap as some of the TDA and TPA offerings, but it's excellent and has a lot of power. The sound is most definitely colored, and more on the laid-back side of neutral. I can listen to it for hours on my speakers with horns.

    I also love the Volt+D, which I also have. It has somewhat different sound signature, and the imaging is probably a little stronger on the Volt+D.
     
  6. HiFiJeff

    HiFiJeff Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    788
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    Can you elaborate? Because I am very interested in what people with the Volt+d and Volt+ think of other amps. I know how much I like my Volt+ so it gives me a solid foundation to go off of others opinions who also own that amp. So when you say somewhat different sound signature with The Volt+d compared to the STA6. What do you mean? Do you like one over the other. And if so is it by a wide margin?
     

     

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  7. grantly

    grantly AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    148
    Location:
    Nashvegas, TN
    I'll do my best here to explain the sonic differences (at least from my experience).

    I use the STA-6 in my main living room system, but that's not necessarily because I think the STA-6 is so much better than the Volt+D. It is better suited for that particular room, though. The STA-6 has a somewhat laid back presentation while still having a great bass. I use big waveguide speakers in my living room, and that combined with the fact that my big open living room/kitchen area has a lot of hard surfaces (lots of big windows, hardwood floors, kitchen countertops, etc.), makes it necessary for me to pair my speakers with an amp that is not too forward in the treble and upper midrange. The STA-6 is great for that purpose. I had used it for awhile in my upstairs media room, which has big couches, thick carpet with a thick pad underneath, and not many straight/hard corners, and the STA-6 sounds almost boring and lifeless in that room. In my livelier (sound wise) living room, however, it sounds amazing.

    The Volt+D, on the other hand, has slightly better imaging and separation of instruments than the STA-6. I'd also say the sound is just a touch livelier than the STA-6, especially in the high frequencies, but it is by no means a "bright" amp. It still works fairly well in my main living room system when I've used it. The main and most immediately obvious difference is that it's lacking the bass slam that the STA-6 has. The bass is there, but it's not nearly as powerful.

    All in all, I have found that STA-6 sounds like what most people who aren't really into tube amps think a tube amp sounds like: Laid back with a warm sound signature. I will say, though, that the bass is better than most tube amps I've heard.
    However, the Volt+D sounds eerily similar to some low-powered tube amps I've heard, including a Magnavox console tube amp I used to have. Voices and midrange sound really, really good on the Volt+D. The high frequencies also have some good sparkle without being too intense.

    I hope that helps a little.
     
  8. seikosha

    seikosha Member

    Messages:
    84
    I've got a Volt+D and Nuprime STA-9. I'd pretty much echo much of what grantly said with one exception.

    In my system, the STA-9 images better, and has a wider soundstage. Overall, I'm actually sort of lukewarm on the Volt+D but that said, I've only got about 5 hours on it. I've also got a Pass Amp Camp that I feel outperforms both the Nuprime and the Volt+D but it's a Class A amp, not a Class D.
     
  9. Samac

    Samac Active Member

    Messages:
    115
    Location:
    N.E. Ohio
    I have an LM3886 chip based integrated from Arcam, the A19 and a class-d amp from NuPrime, the IDA-16.

    They are both great amps. I've found both amps to be balanced from treble to bass with good tone and dynamics. Good luck in your search.

    Cheers,

    Scott
     
  10. 45rpmspinner

    45rpmspinner AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Although a "chip", LM3886 based amps are Class A/B......
     

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