Combining valve and solid-state amplification in a single chassis to capture their inherent qualities – the effusive fluidity of valves, the power and grip of solid-state – is something audio electronics designers have attempted for decades, to varying degrees of success. The difficulty is in engineering these two different technological forms with their contrasting characteristics to meld to create a seamless sonic whole that genuinely delivers the best of both. Too often, hybrid amps turn out to be less than the sum of their parts – a mismatch, both technically and sonically.
In a hybrid system, the solid-state components may be considered the invaders. Thus, it is essential to choose solid-state components that behave similarly to a tube. MOSFETs, used in the power stages, share similar characteristics to valves, and Jan de Groot, the head of Floyd Design, has created amps with MOSFETs for 26 years.
We combined one of our most successful PrimaLuna pre-stages with a quality MOSFET poweramplifier already designed by our Floyd Design department, matched it for the best sound quality possible and mounted it in one chassis! Et voilà! It’s not like most other HYBRID Integrated Amplifiers on the market. You can SEE that, and you can HEAR that. And we didn’t want to be like the other hybrids in the market. We just wanted to produce the BEST HYBRID possible, and we knew it would become a more expensive unit. After the final fine-tuning and listening tests, we can easily accept and justify that!
Here, the respective expertise of PrimaLuna and Floyd Design, empowered by their close working relationship under common ownership, has enabled the creation of a hybrid amplifier that works in perfect concert from input to output. The result of this fusion of valve and solid-state excellence is an amp that delivers a tremendous dynamic range, deep and broad stereo imaging, smoothly expressive mid and high frequencies, taught and tuneful bass, and fast, punchy control.