VRX Stereo Preamplifier VRX Stereo Preamplifier

The Superb Audio Horizons VRX Tube Preamplifier

We are excited to announce total new VRX components line.

Please see attached pictures for new look and key facts, Thanks your reading and please let me know if you are interested to upgrade from your current model or introduce to friends, Thanks your kindness and many years of supports.

Most amplifiers on the market pass signal through coupling capacitors. But capacitors can’t pass signal quickly enough. This slownesss interferes with the performance of the tubes. The plate current of the tubes is unsteady and the harmonics in the signal fade too quickly and lack richness.

The VRX preamplifier carries signal through transformer coupling in a special way that reproduces the full voltage swings of the music signal. The alternations of the music waveform swing in accurate symmetry to deliver the full dynamics and harmonic richness of the music, even into low impedances.

Here we are .... the new VRX series - the “ Very Rare transformer preamplifier.”

VRX series

1. Appearance

All new inside circuit and tubes design and point to point layouts.

2. New powder-matte finish with muted tones of choice of silver, green and blue cover, easy to differentiate to the previous models such as TP 2.1, 2.2, 2.3.

If you own any of these models, please ask by mail for upgrade schedule and cost, we are very sure you will like the sounds and bring you long years of enjoyment with fractions of cost to upgrade to other brand name tube preamplifier.

3. Powered supply section

** Ultra preminum grade low noise C core linear power transformer and choke, power film capacitors.

** Tube base high voltage rectification.

** Soft start prolongs tubes life

** Ultra low noise constant current and shunt regulation

** Audiohorizons Platinum Reference fuse installed

4. Preamp section

** 2 stages 3 tubes, high current driving capabilities

** 4 interstage premium transformers, no capacitors in signal path

** Ultra linearity and wide bandwidth, non feedback design.

** Use only high Q wires through out.

** 300 ohms headphones driving capabilities, different headphone jack type customer option.

** 3 tube coolers pre-install is optional.

** 1 ft connection cable included for the separated chassis only.

Total 4 tubes required, 5687, 6FD7(x2) and EZ 80.

Specifications:

Voltage gains: 13 dB

Frequency response: 10 -120 kHz +1,-2 dB

Total harmonics distortion: 0.1% or lower

Separation: better than 100 dB


[Design Philosophy]

Tubes versus Solid State

One of the oldest debates in high end audio is between the proponents of tube equipment and those committed to solid state designs. There are arguments to support each position.

Solid state equipment is hassle-free—there’s no need to replace tubes at periodic intervals; warm up time until reasonable performance is briefer than it is for tubes; and the component can be left on for long periods of time (and oddly, this will improve performance) without exhausting the finite life expectancy of tubes. More significant in terms of performance, solid state equipment has better S/N figures than can usually be achieved by tube equipment, in part because of the inherent residual noise level of tubes. Solid state equipment produces crisper edges, and thus sharper transients, because solid state IC’s and transistors have a faster decay time than tubes. Finally, far lower Harmonic Distortion figures can be reached with solid state equipment than can be reached by tube equipment, again in part because of the residual higher distortion levels of tubes. There are other areas, such as DynamicRange where solid state equipment again usually excels over tube equipment, but the first three produce the greatest challenge for tube designers.

At first glance, this is an impressive list of advantages, whose sonic effects would weigh in favor of solid state designs. But there are certain advantages that tube designs have over solid state designs that make the choice more complex.

Tubes produce a rounder, fuller sound than do solid state components. For many this adds a pleasing warmth and body to the music not easily achievable with solid state equipment. In addition, tubes are better able to capture those higher order harmonics that distinguish the reedy quality of an oboe from that of a clarinet, the resinous quality of a string bass from that of a drum bass, and the sound of a soprano’s breathy vocal chords better than solid state equipment. For tube aficionados, this too is a big plus. Finally, tubes, because of their inherently slower decay times, are better able to capture the musical rise and fall and ebb and flow of live music, which does not turn on and off the way solid state component parts do but instead flows imperceptibly from one rising or falling phrase into another. For many listeners, this slower decay time of tubes enhances the listener’s experience of the music—that is, the music sounds more musical and involving when played over tube equipment.

Must one choose between these two opposing excellences? The answer is no. If the designer is insightful and creative enough, he can minimize the shortcomings of tube equipment while still preserving their excellences. In effect, he can narrow and almost eliminate the advantages unique to solid state equipment.

Since Signal-to-Noise is among the two or three most critical parameters of sonic excellence—one can’t hear any micro-detail below the noise floor--a tube designer must first attempt to bridge the gap between solid state designs and tube designs in this critical area. Many tube designers achieve this narrowing by elaborate feedback circuits. While the use of feedback does lower the noise floor, the elaborate circuits required to do so complicate the signal path and thus introduce signal compression. Thus while they gain in reducing S/N, they lose in sonic openness and transparency. Joseph Chow avoids feedback entirely. But by virtue of his deep insight into materials and circuits he is able with his tube designs to achieve S/N levels that would do many solid state designers proud. For example the S/N for the Audio Horizons 2.3Sc at -115dBv, in balanced mode, it is -125 dBv.

As further illustration of Joseph’s ability to virtually eliminate this key sonic advantage of solid state designs, one need only note that often a manufacturer’s S/N levels are reported using higher than 1 volt output ratings (usually signaled by the abbreviation dBv), say 2 volts or 3 volts, but the S/N at 3 volts, for example, will be about -10 dB better than at 1 volt. Thus by using 3 volts output, the manufacturer is able to use a -10 dB lower S/N figure than he would if he used the generally agreed upon 1 volt standard. Some manufacturers call this marketing. In addition, sometimes the S/N figures on tube equipment are so poor they are not indicated at all in the website spec sheet.

By virtue of avoiding feedback and using a philosophy of classic design, Joseph is able to achieve the clear edges and fine transients characteristic of solid state designs. And by designing balanced geometry interconnects with carefully designed capacitance, whether using RCA or XLR jacks, Joseph is able to create tube designs that have clean but soft edges, that in a word, preserve all the excellences of tube design while achieving those common to solid state designs.

In essence, Joseph has created a tube preamplifier that weds the virtues of solid state design to those of tube design to create a superbly transparent sounding DAC.


The Audio Horizons TP 2.3Sc Design

The Audio Horizons TP 2.3 Stereo Preamplifier is a high end tube preamplifier boasting specifications found only in preamplifiers costing two to five times as much. We invite you to compare our confirmed specifications with those published by other manufacturers of high end tube preamplifiers. Then we invite you to audition the TP 2.3Sc.

But while this extensive list describes some of the features that contribute to the TP 2.3Sc’s superb performance, they do not fully explain it. To truly understand how Joseph Chow has managed to achieve spectacular performance at a relatively modest cost, we have to spend a moment explaining how Joseph Chow’s classic design philosophy differs from typical audio design philosophy.

Most of us are aware of the well-known division among audiophile designers between those who prefer solid state designs and those who prefer tube designs, but few are aware of other deep divisions. The most important of these is between two audio electronic design philosophies--between those who seek to prune away as severely as possible the materials and circuitry used (who, for example, when designing a preamplifier have as their ideal, “a straight line with gain”).

Opposed to these minimalist designers are those who seek to overcome the inherent limitations of the materials used by elaborating circuits and feedback. These designers seem wed to complex circuitries. For purposes of this discussion, we will call designs of severe simplicity, the school of simple design. The second group, which attempts to perfect designs via circuit complexity, we will call the school of exotic design. Most designers fall somewhere in between, but within the parameters of one or the other of these ruling philosophies.

Joseph Chow has chosen a third way of design, one neither simple nor exotic, but one which seeks instead to look deeply into the circuit function, the materials used in it, and the sonic goals to be achieved. By analyzing these, especially the inherent sonic characteristics of the materials and components at every stage, Joseph Chow seeks neither to eliminate components, as those in the simple design school do, nor to compensate for them, as those in the exotic design school do. Instead, he seeks to harmonize the inherent characteristics of materials with the circuit design itself. This search for harmony between the materials used and their function within the overall architecture is what defines and distinguishes Audio Horizon design. The focus is always on the sound characteristics inherent in the materials themselves and, given their characteristics, to achieve at an affordable price the highest quality sound possible.

The Audio Horizons designer looks as deeply as possible into the circuit path, and into the sound characteristics of the materials and components used, and he does this at the smallest level possible. His search for distortion and noise at the minutest circuit and material level begins, first, with a desire to eliminate all spurious noise and, second, with a respect for the importance of Q [defined as the “quality factor of an inductor or capacitor. It is the ratio of a component’s reactance ... to its effective series resistance” Dictionary of Electronics].”

We seek to lower noise because only by lowering noise are the sonic characteristics of individual components revealed. No designer, no matter how fine his ear, can improve a design below the noise level, for at that level he cannot hear the difference between one component make or value and another, one circuit modification and another. Low noise permits the designer to hear more clearly the very fine sonic differences small component changes and slight circuit modifications make.

Typical of Audio Horizon’s attention to the smallest detail, the designer has specified that the input jacks be Teflon insulated because the Teflon reduces signal loss, and because it has a high Q.

In addition to a focus on high Q, Audio Horizons’ classic design leads it to eliminate all spurious, little used features, ones that may add glamorous complexity and the appearance of quality to the product, but yield no sonic improvement and in fact present design problems of their own. This is in keeping with Audio Horizons’ desire to keep distortion, the noise level, and costs as low as possible at every stage. Thus, as part of his desire for a classic line, at every stage the Audio Horizons designer seeks to keep the signal as clean as possible with the minimum number of parts. If three parts, however, will yield a cleaner signal than one part, without altering or degrading the signal, then three parts is both theoretically and sonically the minimum number of parts required.

Throughout the circuit, noise and distortion are reduced by providing clean, high Q signal paths that make the signal timing more accurate and lifelike.

But that’s enough about design theory and about why the TP 2.3 specifications and performance are so outstanding. The proof of the pudding, as they say, is in the tasting. Listen to the TP 2.3. When you listen, the first thing that strikes you is how the sound emerges from out of the very blackest silence. Then you are struck by the harmonics, by how well you can hear the reedy overtones of a clarinet and the resinous string quality of a cello. Soon you realize there are no hard edges, that the spurious warm edges lent to music by distortion are gone. Little by little, you begin to realize how wide the soundstage is, how sharp the imaging, how airy the high end is and how rich and tight the bass is. And on and on your appreciation for this marvelous instrument and this brilliant designer grows. But don’t take our word for it. Listen to it with your own ears. Better yet, listen to it over your own system. You will clearly recognize its superior performance.