The new SM-100 pre-amplifier are close to go in to production. It is handmade in Denmark. The final listening tests, further tests and design of enclosure will occupy the next 6 months or so. Prototypes will go out to selected customers and “golden ears” in the near future. Final evaluation upon feedback from these persons will decide the exact date of introduction on the market.
The design and development of this amplifier began in February 2017, although in a way it began more than 20 years ago, when the ideas about this amplifier emerged in my head. Either way it is based on the experience of more than 35 years.
It is in many ways a “worlds first”. It is most likely the shortest signal path ever encountered in an amplifier of this category. The volume control is unique and will insure the best possible setting of low distortion to low noise adapted to the system in which it is to be incorporated. No matter what line signal source or power amplifier it needs adapt in to.
In the same manner it is possible to match and adapt the RIAA amplifier to any known Pick Up set up. This is extremely important as the impedance and signal level of Pick Up´s varies grossly from type to type and so does the actual set up.
This capability to actually provide the optimal match to any set up configuration, is to the best of our knowledge a unique feature only found with the Lilienthal SM-100 Pre-Amplifier.
The well known and frustrating plague of valves, “contact noise”, has been completely eliminated. ( Often heard as a periodic hiss and/or spot noise )
Microphonics has been reduced to the physical limits of valves. In practise it is eliminated. No level of sound pressure found in a domestic environment can provoke acoustic microphonics in the SM-100 amplifier.
There is no global feedback used in the SM-100 circuits. ( Global feedback is considered as output to input feedback ) Degenerative coupling ( Cathodes ) and anode feedback are the only sorts of feedback used.That may actually not even count as feedback, at least not in the traditional way. Personally I do not consider “local feedback” or degeneration as feedback, although it is often called so. In my opinion it is the actual merits of the valve set up. It is flat out impossible to encounter phase deviation or oscillations from degeneration, It doesn’t act as conventional feedback in this manner.
The RIAA filter is passive.
Only the best components are used. All are selected to the particular task.
The research and development of this amplifier are performed by the brilliant Ulrik Smed and yours truly.
Please, consider this as an “appetizer” or “teaser” for the SM-100 pre-amplifier.
Much more to come about this little wonder.
Expected retail price Dkr.30.000 = EUR 4000,- = GBP£ 3600,- = US$ 4600,-
plus local VAT.
– sincerely Kurt van Lilienthal Heitmann Thaaning Steffensen.