Siltech's statement amplifier

Throughout Siltech’s near four decade long life, our focus has been to make products that take you closer to your favourite recordings, unlocking them before your very ears. Of course, much of our work has been on cables – as these can have a highly deleterious effect on a system’s sound. But we’ve also undertaken two very special projects, the Symphony loudspeaker and the SAGA amplifier seen here.

Siltech’s Structural Amplifier Gain Architecture is a radically different design approach to amplifying sound; the object being to lose as little as possible of the original signal, whilst adding nothing. In order to do this, our engineers studied the ways that amplifiers can damage the precious musical signals they’re asked to apply gain to. They then deployed their unique approach, honed from developing some of the world’s finest cables, to the task of designing the finest amplifier system on sale today.

Saga System Tower

Design matters

Throughout the development of the SAGA system, Siltech engineers used advanced physical modelling – implementing NASA-awarded Comsol advanced multi-physics programming. This helped us get a better understanding of how to minimise noise and distortion in the circuitry, and fashion the architecture accordingly. The result was a three-way split between the C1 line-stage preamplifier, V1 voltage gain interstage amplifier and P1 power amplifier.

Together, the SAGA system (C1, V1 and P1) is quite unlike any conventional amplifier. The design physically separates the line, voltage and current gain stages, for the lowest possible distortion and the minimum signal loss. This confers a number of benefits, such as enabling the use of tubes and a battery power supply in the C1 – which broadens the dynamic range, whilst keeping the ultra sensitive low voltage circuits away from noisy AC mains.

The V1 interstage amplifier works with either a single P1 power amplifier, or a pair. The former uses tubes to complement the latter’s mighty solid-state output stage, which puts out a redoubtable 350W RMS per channel into 8 ohms and twice that into 4, with no overall feedback.

The build

Power play

As with all Siltech cables, the key design criterion for the SAGA amplifier was the minimising of electrical, electrostatic, electromagnetic and mechanical noise going into the amplifier. That’s why it employs two unusual approaches to power management…

Siltech SAGA V1 open

Live and direct

Incoming AC mains noise wreaks havoc with the sensitive circuits of any high end amplifier, as does that created by its own power transformers and power supply components. That’s why both the C1 preamplifier and V1 interstage amplifier run off batteries – giving a pure, noise-free direct current supply. Siltech’s solution involves smart-controlled rechargeable cells, which drive specially selected ultra low noise tubes. The result is an eerily quiet amplifier that never smears subtle musical cues.

Light fantastic

The P1 power amplifier requires a super clean high current power supply to turn the low voltage line level music signal into hundreds of watts of output power. To do this, Siltech designed the Apollo Light Drive. A super-strong AC-powered light source is used to drive a photo-electric cell, giving a totally noise-free, galvanically isolated DC output. This then drives the amplifier’s output stage, keeping it absolutely immune from mains-born distortion. The idea behind this is not new, but its execution in a high powered amplifier is extremely challenging. The result is ultra-clean, low distortion power – and lots of it.

Siltech Saga P1 Apollo light drive

Come together

As well as its novel modular design, the SAGA system naturally employs Siltech best practices. Component quality is cost-no-object, and internal wiring is of course our unsurpassed S10 monocrystal silver. Materials such as Kapton and PEEK feature in the cable dielectrics. Signal paths are as short as possible, and the vacuum tubes in the C1 and V1 are specially selected.

Working together, the C1, V1, and P1 deliver vanishingly low distortion allied to immense dynamic swings on musical crescendos – the result is an enormous 145dB dynamic range. When the V1 interstage amplifier is mated to twin P1 power amplifiers, loudspeakers can be bi-amplified for an even more significant effect. Either way, the result is a spectacularly musical sound, totally unfettered by the usual issues that plague traditional designs.

Technical Specification
Siltech C1 Preamplifier Detail Tubes

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