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Manolo47 23rd July 2008 08:07 PM

F4 - Factory Built- First impressions
I know this forum is a DIY one, but I have not seen too many posts on factory built units. A few impressions on my new F4 amplifier:

Well, it got shipped via USPS Priority from California to San Juan, PR in only 3 days . How is that for our postal service.

It is being used to drive a pair of Reference 3aMM DCapo's speakers, and itself driven by a Supratek Chardonnay preamplifier, which is a perfect combination because the Supratek is a very high gain preamplifier. Digital chores are taken care by 47 Labs electronics.

After less than 1 hour of first turning it on, (it really gets hot) the amplifier was producing a very detailed and sweet sound. I checked with Mark about break-in time but he mentioned the F4, according to Nelson, does not really need break-in time. Last night, however, after 30 hours of use I am sure I heard a definitive improvement, i.e., sweeter and smoother.

The inner detail this amplifier produces is amazing and what I like the most, is that one can hear everything there is in the mix at much lower volume levels than with my previous amplifier (Plinius P8, yes I know an overkill)

Nelson Pass 24th July 2008 12:19 AM

You understand that the amplifier is burned in and re-adjusted over
a several day period. What people generally experience is the
performance over the first couple of warm-up hours.

In any case, if you're happy, then I'm happy. :cool:

wirewiggler 24th July 2008 01:10 AM

not to mention the magical touch by Pass hands.

steenoe 25th July 2008 07:26 PM

The F4 does not need any magical hands, just build it yourself..... If you have the preamp to drive it fully into your chosen speakers, its simply a whopper..... I havent heard anything yet to match it...
:) :)

albertli 26th July 2008 03:07 AM


Is there any chance you have the F4 schematic handly?

Oh!! I like fly fishing too.


tms0425 27th July 2008 11:33 AM

Schematics are here

F4 Schematic

albertli 27th July 2008 04:15 PM


wirewiggler 31st July 2008 02:54 AM

I built a pair and am fat dumb and happy with, however lacking the equipment , knowledge, and resources to swap components to achieve the optimal balance. I would be curious how our concoctions would sound next to a first watt product.


steenoe 2nd August 2008 03:40 PM

Hi Bill..
You are putting out an interesting question, indeed. I dont think that the factory made units sound better than the DIY ones, generally! Ofcourse it all depends on build-quality... If you skimp too much, the amp won't sound as good as it could. But: The average DIY'er doesn't need to care about a few dollars added cost, so if you build an extra fine PSU, for example, the amp might sound better than the original!! Ofcourse its nice to own a genuine and original product, but the sound of it will probably not be better than your homemade effort...


Magura 2nd August 2008 05:53 PM

It could be interesting to compare the Steenoe F4 to the Lykke F4.

Such a comparison should give a hint.

Magura :)

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