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May 26, 2020, 06:56:41 PM

Author Topic: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit  (Read 3345 times)

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Offline Doc B.

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MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« on: November 08, 2019, 02:41:25 PM »
You asked for a 2A3 monoblocks kit like this a few months ago, and we have delivered!

https://bottlehead.com/product/mon-amour-2a3-monoblock-amps-kit/
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President For Life
Bottlehead Corp.

Offline Gerry E.

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2019, 02:52:49 AM »
I'm surprised nobody has commented.  Congratulations on your new babies!  Twins no less.  If I didn't just spring for a pair of Takatsuki TA-300Bs for my Paramounts, this would have been something to think about.  Is this the first BH "mainstream" product to feature meters?

Gerry         

Online Paul Birkeland

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2019, 04:37:31 AM »
Is this the first BH "mainstream" product to feature meters?       
Yes indeed, they are.  The meters should give a pretty good indication of when the 300Bs are worn out, as well as confirm the current switch setting.
Paul "PB" Birkeland

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Offline Karl5150

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2019, 06:31:13 AM »
Looking (drooling) at the in-depth info on the product page I see that even at the lower operating point the MonAmours put out an additional watt/channel (22%) over the StereomourII. Is this due to the use of the up-spec PCs and OTs, or are there other circuit changes that also play into the improved output?
(Voice in my head: "Back away from the order button, you already have more BH amps than sources.")

Karl 
Karl
Downstairs: Planar3>Eros / X-12>Stereomour II>Tekton OB4.5 & DIY "S8" subs
Upstairs: DIY RP1>Reduction / CD5004>Seductor/SEX 3.1.1>FH3/DT770 pro
Office: Schiit Modi Uber 2/Sirius Tuner>SEX 2.1.1>µFonken/FF85WK

Online Paul Birkeland

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2019, 08:31:55 AM »
It's a combination of a different operating point and the different iron that provide a bit more power compared to the Stereomour at the 50mA operating point.  At 60mA, we are fully taking advantage of that beefy iron.   
Paul "PB" Birkeland

Bottlehead Grunt & The Repro Man

Offline Karl5150

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2019, 03:26:36 AM »
Thanks Paul,
I missed the Something New thread.
With the transformer covers and plate finish they'll come out of the box looking as good as they'll no doubt sound.
Karl
Karl
Downstairs: Planar3>Eros / X-12>Stereomour II>Tekton OB4.5 & DIY "S8" subs
Upstairs: DIY RP1>Reduction / CD5004>Seductor/SEX 3.1.1>FH3/DT770 pro
Office: Schiit Modi Uber 2/Sirius Tuner>SEX 2.1.1>µFonken/FF85WK

Offline jjvornov

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2019, 03:54:14 AM »
My order is in. I thought the Kaiju might be the last amplifier I'd need to to build, but I enjoy building the kits and have to do it just to see how it sounds with the Zu Soul Supremes. I don't have space for another system, so I may seriously think about selling the Kaiju to let someone else enjoy it once the MonAmours are built

Online Paul Birkeland

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2019, 05:54:25 AM »
There will be some fun modifications available for this kit that just aren't doable with the Stereomour or the Kaiju.  I have to order some bits and pieces that I don't have sitting around to evaluate these changes, but the flexibility offered by the simpler DC filament supply opens up some interesting choices.
Paul "PB" Birkeland

Bottlehead Grunt & The Repro Man

Offline Larpy

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2019, 03:13:21 PM »
Bottlehead now has two amplifiers that put out 7-8 watts per channel: the Kaiju and the Mon Amour.  For those of us who have been thinking about buying the Kaiju, is there a case to be made to buy the Mon Amour instead?
Larry

Online Paul Birkeland

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2019, 03:49:47 PM »
It really depends on what you're looking for.  The Kaiju eeks out a tiny bit more power, though certainly nothing you're going to notice.  It's also a little bit quieter, but we have used noisier amplifiers on headphones before and not noticed that issue either, so that's not exactly a point in either favor. 

The Kaiju is a bit less expensive but comes with lower quality parts.  You could certainly upgrade those later on your own, and there is (barely) space to fit them in the amp.  With the Kaiju, you will be married to the 300B output tube, which I don't think is a problem myself.  I would say the Kaiju is a little easier to build overall.  The form factor may also be more convenient for many, as it is a proper width to just take up one shelf on a stereo rack.  The MonAmours are surprisingly large in comparison.

The MonAmours are a bit more expensive (we'll ignore the introductory sale thing) but offer film cathode bypass caps, some nicer coupling caps, and some nice cosmetic touches.  The very deep low bass will be slightly better defined based on the altered operating point allowing us to use the full winding on the choke, but the Kaiju is already fantastic in this department.  You will get the convenience of being able to use 2A3s right off the bat and the 2A3-40, which is really a 300B with its filament connected differently so it will run on 2.5V.  I have been running the first pair for a few weeks now, and going from a Sovtek 2A3 to a JJ 2A3-40 and using the switch to adjust the current really does alter the amp from a 2A3 amp to a 300B amp sonically.  There is also certainly the potential to modify the MonAmour to take 300Bs, and I hope to use the amp we built for the manual photo shoot on Sunday to perform these experiments. 

I could definitely be happy with either amp, and I'm certainly satisfied having both around.  My collection of 2A3s is far larger than my collection of 300Bs though, and some of those old stock 2A3s sound pretty nice.  I also admit that I really like shrouds and meters.  If cosmetics aren't much of a consideration and you're only ever going to run 300Bs, I'd stick with the Kaiju.
Paul "PB" Birkeland

Bottlehead Grunt & The Repro Man

Offline Doc B.

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2019, 04:05:21 PM »
Kaiju is a Stereo amp. It can be strapped to become a 16 watt (maybe really more like 18W) monoblock.

The bottom line here is whether you want a stereo amp or a monoblock amp.
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President For Life
Bottlehead Corp.

Offline Keta

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2019, 08:14:53 AM »
I'm happy to have ordered the new MonAmour while on the initial sale.  Last Bottlehead kit was the original Foreplay 1 preamp which I actually still play from time to time.

Question... will the kit come with tubes or do I need to source?

Thanks

Online Paul Birkeland

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2019, 08:17:33 AM »
We provide tubes with the kit, which are generally American old stock 5670s and Sovtek 2A3s.

-PB
Paul "PB" Birkeland

Bottlehead Grunt & The Repro Man

Offline Keta

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2019, 10:45:37 AM »
Great to hear, thanks!

Offline triode

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Re: MonAmour, our new premium 2A3 monoblocks kit
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2019, 08:39:40 PM »
Hi Paul,

I finally ordered MonAmour.
Does the instruction/schematic ready to be downloaded yet?

Thanks