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Significant New Amplifier Design On The Way?


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I own two Class D amps and I'm very impressed with their performance, especially for the money. I still don't understand the "remain in the digital domain from input to output" assertions. While both of my Class D amps are analog in / analog out, are they saying that there is a way to actuate a speaker with 1's and 0's without digital to analog conversion? Or are they just integrating digital conversion further down the chain at the amplifier?

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There are a lot of mythconceptions in that article. First off, D ≠ digital. (There are some "direct digital" amps that are class-D like, but most others function just like any old amp with analogue inputs.) The stuff about the distortion is at least 10 years obsolete. It makes me wonder if any of the assertions in the article are sound. It is good to have any audiophool publication promoting Class D, but it would be better if it were done accurately.

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mrvco I imagine that what the article is talking about is that the D-A conversion is performed by high current devices capable of driving the speaker without any further amplification required. At the moment, D-A conversion is performed by a low current device, which generates an analog signal which requires further amplification before it can drive a speaker. Such a DAC/amplifier would mean digital all the way to the amp. No separate DA converter. No preamp. It would be the ultimate clean signal.

 

Provided it works, and there are no unforeseen teething problems, of course.

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mrvco I imagine that what the article is talking about is that the D-A conversion is performed by high current devices capable of driving the speaker without any further amplification required. At the moment, D-A conversion is performed by a low current device, which generates an analog signal which requires further amplification before it can drive a speaker. Such a DAC/amplifier would mean digital all the way to the amp. No separate DA converter. No preamp. It would be the ultimate clean signal.

 

Provided it works, and there are no unforeseen teething problems, of course.

 

Thanks, that makes sense. Basically pushing the D to A process as close to the edge as possible and shortening the analog signal path as much as possible. I presume this still requires a DAC chip of some sort be added to the Class D circuitry. Does anyone currently produce a "high current" DAC chip or are they repurposing traditional chips?

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Didn't read the article. Tact tripath based amps were indeed digital with the output stage doing the DA conversion. I believe NAD had amps like this as well as Wadia. lygndorf I think also works like this.

 

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are they saying that there is a way to actuate a speaker with 1's and 0's without digital to analog conversion? Or are they just integrating digital conversion further down the chain at the amplifier?

 

Yes, it is possible see Pulse-Frequency Modulation (Audio amplification down at he end).

 

A new class of audio amplifiers based on the PWM principle is becoming popular. Called class-D amplifiers, they produce a PWM equivalent of the analog input signal which is fed to the loudspeaker via a suitable filter network to block the carrier and recover the original audio.

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The link reads like a marketing department brochure.

Not sure if it meant Class D is digital or the digital technology developed this semiconductor process.

TIM distortion? really?

 

It sure does read that way !

 

they produce a PWM equivalent of the analog input signal which is fed to the loudspeaker via a suitable filter network to block the carrier and recover the original audio.

 

Earlier Class D amplifies had a reduced HF bandwidth compared with the better analogue designs due to a mandated FCC requirement for RF/EMI emission.

Many earlier DIY designs would never have passed these legislated requirements .

 

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