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Grant Fidelity W-30 Integrated All-in-one Tube Amp w/ Phono
Additional InfoW30GT manual English.pdf (2.2 MB)
Review by Nells Ferre at Enjoy The Music.com - 5 out 5 overall rating. It is also the winner of the prestige 'Best of 2011 Blue Note Award'!
"This is not only the most positive review I can recall writing, it is the lengthiest as well. There is some risk in this, as I could have built up the Grant Fidelity W-30GT so much that a reader may have their expectations too high when auditioning or purchasing. The more I listen to the W-30GT, the more I am sure that I have not. As the cornerstone of a $6000 system as it is here (without the analog setup) it is right at home, and I found them to be especially synergistic with the Salk Signature Sound Songtowers. The W-30GT in stock form is an incredible value. Add the optional (and highly recommended) Shuguang Treasure KT88 output tubes, and the W-30GT transforms to world class. It is simply that good. The Grant Fidelity W-30GT does not sound like an amplifier. It sounds like music. "
Read full review at this link.
HiFi Zine Review by Jake Montzingo
"This is by far the most quiet tube amplifier I’ve ever heard, and even when turned up, is completely silent through my 98 dB horn speakers. Has Grant Fidelity created the perfect amplifier? Not quite, as every piece of equipment on the market has flaws. More importantly, Grant Fidelity has created an amplifier that I could enjoy listening to every day for the rest of my life; and that’s better than perfection.
Read the full review at this link:
Celebrating Grant Fidelity's 5th year anniversary, we are pleased to launch our latest offering the W-30 Fully Integrated Modular Digital Analog Tube Amplifier. After a 'what if we could' session, 4 years of design, development, testing and prototyping in both Canada and one of China's premiere OEM companies (that has been designing and building very expensive high-end gear for famous 'Western Brands' over the past 20 years, including Grant Fidelity's award winning RITA amps), the W-30 is now ready to become front and centre in your home audio or studio monitoring system for a very long time.
The W-30 will rival amps costing multitudes the price right out of the box, but as with most things Grant Fidelity, we like gear that you can adjust the sound of to suit your tastes and systems. Why be stuck with one person's idea of great sound?, it is your ears that count the most. The W-30 comes thru in spades in the user tweak departments if you are so inclined, read on further below.
The W-30 can turn up to 7 of your source components into tube type hybrid sources and improve the performance of your digital sources such as CD/DVD/BlueRay, computer audio, media servers, digital radio etc. Your vinyl collection will come to life with the carefully designed tube phono-stage that took a few years to get right and quiet considering huge size of the transformers around it.
The modular design of the W-30 will also help ensure it's longevity in your system. If circuits get improved over the years (such as the DAC), a simple circuit board swap (a few screws and quick connect cables) allows for easy upgrading to keep your system up to date with future digital technologies. If your W-30 ever needs to see a tech, he would be hard pressed to take longer than an hour to fix anything inside the W-30, it is that well thought out for ease of maintenance.
The W-30 has been carefully desgined to operate at 'cool' voltage while providing plenty of power and dymanic headroom, the W-30 in typical home 'should last forever' in the words of one of our tech's used in the final testing phase. Another advantage to this is that the tubes should also last much longer than typical.
3 digital inputs, 3 analog inputs and one turntable input makes it a one box solution for high resolution music, Home Concert™ and 2.0 or 2.1 Home Theatre. The numerous 'old school' input and output connections on the back, allow for easy integration into just about any audio system, including your HT system.
The patented pure copper output transformers and choke rectified power transformer are designed and tuned to provide up to five times the rated RMS power in peak power, giving plenty of headroom to handle even the most difficult to drive and control speakers with ease. The W-30 sounds relaxed at any volume and doesn't imprint any sonic characteristics of it's own, allowing the source material to play as it was origianlly recorded. Rolling different type power tubes will give a different sonic presentation, but the sonic magic of the W-30 lies in it's output transformers and the simplicity of the circuits running at 'cool' voltages.
The Amplifier Module is a Class AB1 Ultra-Linear design for high quality, high resolution amplification allows for a wide array of power tube rolling options, giving you basically a new tube amp sound in about 5 minutes. The manual bias design preferred by many audiophiles over autobias designs allows you to further refine your system's sound to match your room, speakers and ears. Turn back the bias a bit to soften the sound or increase the bias for a more aggressive sound. Biasing the W-30 is very simple with the bias adjustment being on the top plate, even those new to tubes can master it in about 10 minutes.
The Pre-Amp Module is specifically designed to drive the W-30's amplifier module with high quality, high resolution tube pre-amplification but can also be used to drive secondary amplification systems as an active tube pre-amp. You can further tailor the sound of the W-30 by replacing the gold coated pre-out/amp-in jumpers with interconnect cables.
The DAC Module allows you to hook up to 192k/24 bit digital audio to the W-30, with Optical and Coaxial SPDIF low jitter inputs for say your CD/DVD/BlueRay player and/or Media Server/CableTV Digital Box/Digital Radio etc. The USB input allows for up to 48k/16 bit USB 1.1 audio streams from your computer or any device that transmits USB audio. The module is developed around the Burr Brown PCM 1793 DAC, TI TL072CP Op Amp and TI PCM2902e USB. It takes longer to remove the bottom panel screws than it takes to replace the DAC Module, lots of options for digital tweakers, including ourselves down the road as digital audio firther evolves.
The Tube Phono-Stage Module will give you excellent vinyl performance with MM and mid/high output MC cartridges (min. suggested - 2.5 mv cartridge output) allowing for all but the low output MC cartridges to be plugged in directly, if you have a low output MC cartridge, you will need a step up transformer. The 12AX7 is one of the most popular tubes out there, so you can roll lots of tubes in their to match your vinyl rig. We recommend the Pavane 12AX7 be on your short list. We are very pleased with the low noise, tonal balance and inner detail of this phono-stage and it should suffice for the serious vinylphile with any vinyl rig in the under $3k price range. RF interference reduction tube covers are provided for the 12AX7 phono-stage tubes, you can remove them if you are not experiencing RF interference, many believe it sounds even better with them off.
The Headphone Module is fed from the power tubes creating a headphone experience that rivals the best of stand alone headphone amps. The headphone amp will power just about any headphone out there (10 to 600 ohm) with ease and again, you get a new headphone amp with every power tube roll. and the ability to manually bias your amp to perfectly match your headphones.
The Input/Output Modules. The pre-out jacks allows you to access the high resolution 6N1 tube pre-amp section for sending to another amp for horizontal biamping or to a subwoofer. The line out jack allows you to record any of your sources after being tube processed in the pre-amp section, prior to the the volume control. The preamp in/out jacks allows you more options for tailoring the sound of the W-30, by trying different interconnect cables between the pre and amp, or adding room correction equalization or any other processign you might wish to try. This also opens up other options for connecting the W30 to your existing HT system, allowing you to enjoy the beauty of tube amplification for both movies and music thru your front left and right speakers.
The Volume Control Module is a high quality full range ALPS controller that sweeps the full range with max volume typically being just before full to the right. This gives you full control of the volume to match your listeing preferences. Remote controlled by a beautiful hand formed brushed aluminum black remote with only 4 button needed to control the W-30, you can feel the quality.
High Quality Components sourced from around the world including caps by Solen, Elna and Nickicom, the quality stock tubes are selected for us by Shuguang, the world's leading tube manufaturer.
The Grant Fidelity W30 integrated tube amp is designed in Canada and bulit in China to be an all-in-one unit without any sacrifice on sound quality. Basically nothing on the market comes close to the feature list of the W-30, especially at this price.
So how does it sound? The W-30 has a beautiful sound at any volume, graceful and balanced at low intimate levels and retains this sonic signature when reproducing live venue volumes. The W-30 has a dead quiet black background to paint your soundstage with your favourite music. The W-30's frequency responce is designed flat for use also as a studio recording and mixing reference amplifier.
Note that the Warranty is void if Power Tubes are installed that are not supplied by Grant Fidelity, currently we provide Made-in -China KT88 tubes. Roll in power tubes from elsewhere is at your own risk. Thanks for understanding that we cannot cover warranty issues from tubes that you have received from others, there is just too many bad tubes being sold out there.
- Power output: 2×40W (RMS, Class AB1, KT88)
- Output impedance:4Ω, 8Ω
- Frequency Response: 10 Hz-30 kHz±0.5db, KT88
- THD: ≤1% at 1kHz
- S/N: ≥90%dB
- Input Sensitivity: 420mV (combined input)
- Input impedance: 100kΩ
- Tubes: KT88x 4 pcs, 6N1x 4 pcs, 12AX7x 2 pcs
- Power consumption: 240W
- Size: 17" L x 16" W x 8" H
- Weight: 26kg (57lbs)
The Feature list :
- Modular Integrated tube amplifier
- Tube Pre-Amplifier (6N1 tubes stock x 2)
- Variable Tube Power Amplifier (KT88 x 4 Stock)
- Variable Driver Tube Stage (6N1 tubes stock x 2)
- Tube Headphone amp, tapped from the power tubes, 30 to 600 OHM
- Tube phonostage (12AX7 tubes stock x2), +40 DB useful gain.
- 192k/24 Bit DAC converter to receive signal through the Coax/Optical input ports.
- 48k/16 Bit USB digital input audio stream from a computer.
- Tape Record/Line Level outputs
- Pre Out Jack for biamping or a subwoofer.
- Pre IN/OUT jacks for external processing or voicing with interconnects.
- Easy Manual Power Tube Bias to tailor the sound to your speakers.
- Clip Power Indicator
- Fabulous Remote Control, 4 buttons ! :)
- Massive Jungson HQ Pure Copper Patended Output Transformers.
- Easy access WTB speaker terminals.
Note: Due to the number of connections at the rear panel of this amplifier, it's not possbile to fit all input/output jacks with the same type of gold coated jacks as the CD input used. Silver coated jackes have been used in the current production run to accommodate the available space on the back panel. We have done A/B testing on sound quality - the gold or silver coated jacks do not make any audible difference in this amp. We hope you enjoy silver as much as gold.
Some cool looking pictures from Phil Bondurant and Phil's son-in-law, professional reviewer Jake Montzingo. - click on picture slider to view (last 4 by Phil). Credit to Phil and Jake :) If you have cool pictures or videos of this product, feel free to contact us and submit!
Below is our Canadian customer Denis's system set up with W30 as center piece: