Received my Stellar N700 monoamp*


#1

Have been contemplating a better amp for my Revel C208 centerchannel; after reading all the reviews I could find, I decided that the Stellar monoamp is just what I needed. Received it today; unpacked, opened, fotografed, connected it. Worked instantly but had a groundloop hum/buzz; lifting the earth pin on the cheap, temporary powercable solved that.

First impressions:

  1. Very light weight; I guess that’s what having no big transformers inside does.

  2. Nicely built; stong and sturdy but not too expensive. (Every time I see a Boulder or D’Agastino amp, I shudder to think what those cases cost.)

  3. The top plate rings like a proverbial bell; a layer of Soundcoat-the-Thicker on the inside should solve that. And some on the open spaces of the bottom plate won’t hurt, either. http://www.soniccraft.com/product_info.php/soundcoat-gp-p-4620 . Currently not in stock.

  4. Sounds quite nice, brand-new. It’ll be playing music full-time for three weeks or so. Using temporary RCA cable; my new balanced cables should arrive early next week.

1.2018Jan24_installed-w-steel-blocks_1500w.jpg

2.2018Jan24_top-open-front_1500w.jpg

3.2018Jan24_top-open_Analog-Cell-close-from-front_1500w.jpg

More pics below that do not, for some reason, appear here.

Darren and/or Paul, what’s the function of the Rel 1/200 PPT** caps on the Voltage-gain board? Couplers to the output module?

  • Oh how I do NOT like the term ‘monoblock’. Are 2-channel amps ‘stereoblocks’?

** FWIW, that’s short for PolyPropylene Tubular, even tho they’re cylindrical. 105_gif


#2

Thank you for the excellent review! I’m glad you’re enjoying the sound of them.

The capacitors are in a coupling configuration between the output of the Analog Cell and the output buffer circuitry. The buffer is then directly coupled to the input of the ICE module.

When you receive your new balanced cables I highly recommend removing the ground lift since the balanced connection should resolve your ground loop.

Happy listening! happy-132_gif

-Darren

Edit: It appears that you forgot to put the clear plastic spacer under the logo button before you put the top cover back on. You likely saw this, but I just wanted to make sure!


#3
Darren Myers said

Thank you for the excellent review! I’m glad you’re enjoying the sound of them.

The capacitors are in a coupling configuration between the output of the Analog Cell and the output buffer circuitry. The buffer is then directly coupled to the input of the ICE module.

When you receive your new balanced cables I highly recommend removing the ground lift since the balanced connection should resolve your ground loop.

Happy listening! happy-132_gif

-Darren

Edit: It appears that you forgot to put the clear plastic spacer under the logo button before you put the top cover back on. You likely saw this, but I just wanted to make sure!

TYVM. 1. What's the filter point of the coupling-cap filter? 2. Yes indeed I missed that spacer block. That leaves me two reasons to reopen it--the Soundcoat and the spacer. embarassed 3. Thx for mentioning the balanced cable v. the lifted earth. 4. The two 'lytics closest to the Voltage-gain module are decouplers for the analog module? Or...?

The Stellar amps are fully balanced–that is, ALL the way thru?


#4

This filter is -3dB around .15Hz. They are fully balanced from input to output.

Those two electrolytics are indeed used for power supply decoupling. After these caps, the Analog Cell uses active power supply circuitry in order to effectively attenuate RF noise.


#5
Darren Myers said

This filter is -3dB around .15Hz. They are fully balanced from input to output.

Those two electrolytics are indeed used for power supply decoupling. After these caps, the Analog Cell uses active power supply circuitry in order to effectively attenuate RF noise.

TYVM.

I applied almost a full sheet of SoundCoat on the inside of the top; that sucker is now deader than a proverbial doornail. Applied another piece c. 3X10" on the inside of the bottom in front of the circuit board. Pics later. IF I ever lift either of the boards, I’ll add SC under them towards the rear.

This is my first ICE-powered amp; I’m still astonished it’ll deliver 700 Watts into 4Ω. And it still sounds quite good. smile