Amplifier FAQ

  1. Vivid amplifiers are round. Why?
  2. You use vacuum tubes on all your amps. Why?
  3. I'm into tubes and have a big stash of NOS beauties. Can I "roll" tubes in a Vivid Amp?
  4. You state that your circuits are original. I didn't think anyone was actually designing new tube circuits today.
  5. I've read about Parafeed circuits and they seem quite popular in high-end audio today. Do Vivid amps use Parallel Feed?
  6. How can you offer a 10-year transferable parts and labor warranty?
  7. You use a lot of tubes I've never heard of. Why?
  8. Where can I find replacement tubes?
Q. Vivid amplifiers are round. Why?
A. We like round. Round is cool and it's different. A round amp actually provides for a good layout. And it helps our amps stand out from all the square amps on the market.
Q. You use vacuum tubes on all your amps. Why?
A. We like tubes because, in general, they sound better. There is a certain openness and lively quality to good tubes. They are user serviceable, and they look cool. They are certainly more interesting than an all-black box with black knobs and buttons.
Q. I'm into tubes and have a big stash of NOS beauties. Can I "roll" tubes in a Vivid Amp?
A. Good question. For tube hobbyist, we have designed the Vivid Chameleon, which gets its name not from its ability to change colors, but from the vast range of tubes which it can happily use. The Chameleon will reveal the true differences in your input, rectifier and power tubes. Really cool is our use of a single, ubiquitous 6SN7 or an exotic ECC32 front-end tube which allows for maximum tube rolling enjoyment. And yes, the best part is you only need one tube! Now you can try the most exotic, rare, NOS front end tube for half the cost of other designs. Rectifier options include 5R4, 5U4, 5Y3, 6106, 6087, GZ-34, and GZ-37. The range of output tubes is even more amazing- with plug-and-play options including 6F6, 6K6, 6L6, 6V6, EL34, 350B, KT63, KT66, KT77, KT88 and 6550.

Some of our other amps, such as the Si74, use fairly exotic tubes, (the 7403) which were made by only one or two manufacturers. This will limit your tube rolling considerably. Replacement tubes are available from us.

Other Vivid amp models are also friendly to tube rolling. With our Si66, for example, you can roll output tubes such as 6L6, KT88, and EL34 etc. (re-biasing required) as well as rectifier tubes. Your Vivid amp will come with a complete list of suitable output tubes for you to experiment with. For the front-end 7044 tube, we can supply you with either RCA or GE tubes to play with. Both sound good- and different. Other front-end tube types are not interchangeable in this amp.

Our Si66T, a self-biasing interstage-transformer coupled design, will allow output tube rolling with no need to r e-bias. Rectifiers may be rolled to great effect. Front-end tubes must be 7719.
Q. You state that your circuits are original. I didn't think anyone was actually designing new tube circuits today.
A. They are original. Some of our designs are more radical than others, but all of our amps feature original thinking.
Q. I've read about Parafeed circuits and they seem quite popular in high-end audio today. Do Vivid amps use Parallel Feed?
A. No, we feel parallel feed is unnecessarily and undesirably complex, and just doesn't sound as good as our own designs. We use a fairly radical and proprietary direct-coupled 2-stage circuit on our Si66, and a slightly more conventional, proprietary IT coupled circuit in our Si66T and Chameleon. We are developing our own OTL circuits for later release, starting with the Vivid Koala, an OTL headphone amp, with power enough to drive the AKG K1000, headphones.
Q. How can you offer a 10-year transferable parts and labor warranty?
A. We are confident our amps will last for many, many years. No electyrolytic capacitors in the power supply means no power supply problems. The rest of the parts we use are so conservatively spec'ed that we're confident they will last, practically, forever. We considered offering a lifetime warranty, but we're just too modest.
Q. You use a lot of tubes I've never heard of. Why?
A. While it's true some of tubes we've selected are unfamiliar, most are readily available from online tube vendors, and from us. In our more "exotic" designs, we've chosen the tubes because we feel they offer clear sonic advantages over their more common cousins, and they lend themselves to the more radical circuits we are developing.
Q. Where can I find replacement tubes?
A. We have a sizeable stash of tubes on hand and are always buying more. We can supply your tubes as you need them without worry.