Question Tweaking the "tube distortion" into a class d amp.

AJM1981

Well-known member
Mar 26, 2021
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Tube amps are the opposite of perfect in measures but often considered imperfectly perfect by purists. The measures and the power management is why they have been replaced by better measuring gear by time.

They are judged as pleasant, not because they sound clean but due the way they "add" some harmonic distortion to the sound resulting in some little spice in the midrange and often warmer bass.

Given that, yes.. tube amps are not all the same and the sound is the sum of its components. So it is hard to simulate the way to the outcome. You can however reproduce the outcome in measurements of a particular tube amp.

To my ears and to those reviewers the Yamaha Wxa50 amp does in practical sense vs what is written above with its Dsp function called enhancer. Yamaha itself states in the manual that it is to recover what is lost in music with lower bitrates but the spicing doesnt only apply there. It is a barely noticable effect though it received praise on how it just makes the sound slightly spicier. Something a tube amp would do.

Now I am wondering about the following. Given that tubes are not flawless; could a particular flaw / signature changing the harmonic distortion be added to a regular class d amp just by tweaking something at the motherboard?
 

Tinman1952

Well-known member
May 19, 2021
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867
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Tube amps are the opposite of perfect in measures but often considered imperfectly perfect by purists. The measures and the power management is why they have been replaced by better measuring gear by time.

They are judged as pleasant, not because they sound clean but due the way they "add" some harmonic distortion to the sound resulting in some little spice in the midrange and often warmer bass.

Given that, yes.. tube amps are not all the same and the sound is the sum of its components. So it is hard to simulate the way to the outcome. You can however reproduce the outcome in measurements of a particular tube amp.

To my ears and to those reviewers the Yamaha Wxa50 amp does in practical sense vs what is written above with its Dsp function called enhancer. Yamaha itself states in the manual that it is to recover what is lost in music with lower bitrates but the spicing doesnt only apply there. It is a barely noticable effect though it received praise on how it just makes the sound slightly spicier. Something a tube amp would do.

Now I am wondering about the following. Given that tubes are not flawless; could a particular flaw / signature changing the harmonic distortion be added to a regular class d amp just by tweaking something at the motherboard?
Yes many of the 'measurement disciples' state tubes merely add distortion.....that doesn't explain why many people (myself included) note they can result in a larger soundstage, improved presence, imaging and better tonality.
As for tweaking a class D board, little tube preamps are so cheap now it's not really needed....
 
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