What happens when you try to develop the ultimate tube amplifier without looking at the costs? The result is something like the MONACO. An integrated amplifier with tube amplification in a modern push/pull circuit design and a whopping 100 watts into four ohms. With this reservoir of power, the MONACO drives almost all conventional loudspeakers with aplomb, making it the serious alternative to the best preamp/power amp combinations.
As usual at WESTEND AUDIO SYSTEMS, we place the highest value on the best possible components. But also on the finest cabinet materials and surfaces. The MONACO is created in our manufactory in the heart of Munich. Everything here is handmade. We work with specialists who have been perfecting case finishes for over 20 years and it shows. The MONACO cabinet is raised layer by layer in resonance-optimized aluminum rib construction. The build quality and surface finish are outstanding and can compete with the best on the world market.
Of course, this also applies to the sound. Thanks to selected tubes, fully balanced circuitry, oversized transformer and new, sophisticated switching network design, the MONACO is not only in the ears of AUDIO editors one of the most powerful sounding tube amplifiers in the world, – we also know nothing better in the push-pull sector.
The E130L, which we use in the MONACO as a power tube, was actually developed for military purposes and bred for robustness and long life. For the audio range it is therefore actually underpowered – and desirably oversized. We use two E130L tubes each in push-pull mode and thus achieve a stable 100 watts per channel. And because of the high manufacturing quality, the E130L has its distinctive character compared to other top tubes in the world, but no intrusive inherent sound. This allows us to choose exactly the tuning that is close to our hearts, but difficult to achieve with tube amplifiers: The MONACO conjures up a lifelike live sound image and sounds lively clean and tight even in the deepest bass.
Inputs: 3 × XLR, 2 × RCA
Power consumption: ca. 170 Watts