New from British company Icon Audio are the MB30SE valve monoblocs, selling for £2000/pr.
Designed by Icon Audio founder David Shaw and manufactured in the company's own factory in China before being shipped home to Leicester for final assembly, adjustment and testing, the new amps deliver 27W apiece from a single-ended Pure Class A design.
The main output valves is the new Super Tung Sol KT120, chosen for its sound quality and power output (compared to vintage triodes such as the 300B, which typically only deliver a third of the power).
The amp is able to produce 16W in triode mode, and steps up to 27W when used in ultralinear mode, with other adjustments being variable input sensitivity, the choice of low feedback or none at all, and bias, using the front-panel meter.
The MB30SE also uses Icon Audio's own Low Distortion Tertiary output transformer, has outputs for 4ohm or 8ohm speakers, and is point-to-point hand-wired throughout with PTFE insulated silver-plated pure copper cable.
Custom-wound choke regulation is used in the power supply, along with valve regulation courtesy of GZ35/5AR4 valves, with 6SN7/CV181 valves used in the driver stage.
The amps can be auditioned at Icon Audio in Leicester, or via the company's dealer network.
Written by Andrew Everard