The thread is derivation form the previous thread about the Dima's amplifier.
I was trying to gradually approach better and better loudspeakers with the Zarathustra amplifier but today I decided to hit with the Zarathustra the pinnacle of low sensitivity, cone-boxed loudspeakering. Today I heard the Zarathustra was driving Wilson Audio Alexandria X2. I would omit to comment on some idiosyncrasies of Wilson Alexandria and some aspect of that particular installation but if to looks as the result only from the prospective of an amplifier (I heard Wilson Alexandria before 4 times with different amplifiers) then some things might be mentioned.
Generally the Zarathustra behaved unexpectedly well. With Zarathustra I eventually was able for a first time to recognize now phenomenal midrange could be with the largest Wilson and perhaps how weak thier lower bass… Previously I heard largest Wilsons with Lamms, Boulders, Spectral and Mark Levinson. Wilsons always did thier “large noble sound” and had all potency for handling the large violin groups. No other box speakers can handle it well at the larger volumes. The largest Wilson held it almost perfectly but not without stress. With Zarathustra it was insultingly beautiful! The harder I drove the speakers the more Zarathustra stepped slightly back when music reached the “questionable moments” and let the music flow no mater what. It was kind of interesting: it DID hold all necessary dynamic but sound did not step into the dangers water. At the same time Sound did all necessary “musical screams” with very-very reasonable amplitude.
For the sake of illustration I would call this effect a “selective compression”. The Zarathustra DID not affect the musical dynamic picks but slightly subdued the dynamic aggressiveness of the REPRODUCED LANGUAGE. This all-together give a certain feeling of softness and smoothness that was very much not expected from an amp, particularly from a SS amp that drives the speakers with Titanium tweeters.
I would like do not send message that dynamically Zarathustra has any compression. For instance yeastoday when Zarathustra was driving Kharma 3.2 this amps demonstrated 45732 times more micro- and macro-dynamic then the newest fraudulent Lamm ML2.1. What I was describing in the paragraphs above was not the dynamic compression but some sort of “dynamic actions” that was presented within the sound of the amp. It was slightly different then the “dynamic viscosity” of Melquiades. Melquiades amps are way contrastier, more forceful, more violent, more belligerent and more contagious. The Zarathustra is slightly less aggressive tonally but it has own touch and own very interesting “intelligence”.
Now, I am writing all of this and I clearly understand that my views on Zarathustra form the prospective of Melquiades are completely inappropriate. I use Melquiades with 109dB sensitive horns, armed with really brutal and nasty drivers. The Zarathustra drove the mid 90dB sensitive boxes loaded with the drivers that require voltage of Hoover Damn to move them. The Zarathustra and Melquiades are really meant to works in totally different environments… I am saying it despite of the fact that the largest Wilsons are the ONLY speakers that do not sound like 95dB sensitivity. When I listen them I do not experience my typical “where is my dynamic range” frustrations…
Anyhow, I think I have finished to experiment with Zarathustra amp. To go into deeper analyses of the Zarathustra performance I would need a real seriously bult installation with some serious sub 96dB sensitive speakers. I do not know anyone around me who would be able to facilitate the level of the seriousness that the Zarathustra amp and my listing hobbits would require. The guys with “juts big speakers in a house” do not really fit the Zarathustra’s bill…
I will fix a low-pass filter at the Zarathustra’s input and will let it to drive my woofer towers until I will finish my Super Melquiades projects. Then I will see how Zarathustra’s bass will be able to compete with the single-ended 7Hz of the Super Melquiades. I will post the further findings…
Romy the Cat
"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche