Good news for all tube junkies out there!
We’re extremely pleased to announce that the Volumio shop will feature another great piece of equipment: the PI2Design 503HTA – Hybrid Tube Amp!
I clearly remember when I saw it first time on Kickstarter : I immediately liked the idea, being a complete tube Junkie and having waited something like that (for the Raspberry PI at least) for a long time.
When I finally received it, I immediately started listening. And I must say I was really happy with what was coming to my hears. I might sum up my listening impressions to those bullet points:
- A nice and punchy bass, way more present than what you get with ESS 9023
- Great medium presentation. This thing sounds awesome with Rock and Jazz, bass-guitars, guitars and voices are really convincing!
- Average amount of detail, nearly not as good as ESS 9023
- It features an integrated DSP filter for High Frequencies roll-off, I definetely suggest to turn this off (via the plugin)
So, the 503HTA Hybrid Tube Amp sound signature is very euphonic, and I consider it the ultimate setup if you listen to Rock or Jazz. I think that the guys at PI2Design have made a really good job with it, and that is why it’s now featured in Volumio Shop: this is definetely one of the most interesting DACs at the moment. It has also other advantages:
- Can be used also as a line preamp
- Features a good quality Volume Potentiometer
- Has individuals Anode Bias Adjustment Pots and selectable Series/Parallel Heater Configuration (tube geeks please applaude!)
- It can drive very high impedance Headphones, and has a selectable gain output
It however has just one shortcoming, if used with a Raspberry PI 3: unfortunately its FETs ends up just above the integrated wireless antenna, resulting in lot of noise when Wireless is in use. However, if you have a Raspberry PI3, you can just disable the Integrated Wireless (via network configuration in Volumio) if you don’t need it, or use an external wi-fi dongle.
All in all, I really like the 503HTA, it has a great look, sounds very well and it’s suited for tube rolling. So, if you’re like me and love tubes, Raspberry PI and Volumio you’ve just found the perfect toy !