darTZeel CTH-8550 MkII
Traditional thinking suggests that when looking to go all out in a quest for ultimate sound quality, the only choice is to stay with a separate preamplifier and power amplifier(s). However in recent years, darTZeel has turned that thinking on its head with the release of the CTH-8550 MkII integrated amplifier.
This is a no compromise, dual-mono design, including separate channel windings from both toroidal transformers. With its 50-ohm Zeel inputs, optional high-quality phono stages, all sources including turntables are accommodated. The darTZeel CTH-8550 is equipped with a plasma control panel, offering excellent contrast when viewed from any angle. A range of menus allows you to individually configure all settings for each input source.
The quality and design of the volume control is paramount to the sonic performance of an integrated amplifier and in the case of the CHT-8550 MkII, that is handled by an optical encoder notched magnetically, for unrivalled touch and precision.
However, as much as we invite you to peruse the specifications and technology, this amplifier is all about digging out the emotional expression in music. This is where the darTZeel sound separates itself from virtually all other brands, with a musicality, liquidity and flow that is a benchmark for integrated amplifiers around the world. Keep listening, and you will also hear immense detail & resolution, slam, grip and natural tonality. Unbelievable.
The creator of darTZeel instruments Hervé Delétraz infuses his sense of humour into his creations. The volume control is labelled the ‘Pleasure Control’ and in our experience, it sure is! This amplifier has an uncanny sense of communicating the heart of the musical message and ultimately, that is why music lovers and audiophiles pursue the hobby of music reproduction.
It is beyond a simple ‘recommendation’, we say that if you want the ultimate integrated amplifier experience, you simply MUST audition this beauty. Enjoyment guaranteed.
|Nominal Output Power||200 watts RMS (230 watts peak) @ 8 ohms
330 watts RMS (360 watts peak) @ 4 ohms
400 watts RMS (500 watts peak) @ 2 ohms (software limited)
|Line Gain||0 dB nominal, up to + 12 dB (+22 dB custom)|
|Power Stage Gain||26 dB @ 8 ohms|
|Analog Input Impedances||1 x Zeel BNC 50 ohms
1 x RCA line > 30 kohms
1 x XLR > 30 kohms
|Line Output Impedances||RCA = 75 ohms, darT BNC = 50 ohms|
|Speaker Output Impedance||< 0.33 ohms from 20 Hz to 20 kHz (measured under 8 ohms)|
|Frequency Response||2 Hz – 200 kHz, +0, -3 dB|
|Rise Time||< 0.8 µs|
|Slew Rate||> 88 V/µs, peak-peak|
|DC Output Voltage||< ± 15 mV max|
|Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)||< 1 % from 7 Hz to 77 kHz within the output dynamic range|
|Temporal Distortion||None, at any level and load, as specified above|
|Crosstalk||< – 90 dB from 20Hz to 20kHz|
|Signal to noise ratio||> 115 dB (A) @ nominal power|
|Power consumption||3 watts Standby, 40 watts @ idle, 1,000 watts @ maximum output power|
|Dimensions in mm||440 (W) x 350 (D) x 170 (H)
Total depth with handles: 415mm
|Dimensions in inches||17.32 (W) x 13.78 (D) x 6.7 (H)
Total depth with handles: 16.4 inches.
|Net weight||28kg (61.7lbs)|