Power Amplifier tested

Vilnius power amplifier testedThe Power amplifier tested, made by Pilnius audio and named the Hautonga. A perfectly equipped, balanced amplifier. And derived from earlier Plinius integrated amplifiers. The aesthetic look, is the distinctive Plinius rounded front. And available in silver or black anodised finish. 

Amplifier design

Amplifier remote controlAnd, from a distance, you can see the design of Plinius products is more than an applied styling exercise. From the front panel, we started from the ground up to produce a unique casing. As our electronics are unrivalled in its physical strength and visual simplicity.
Wherever possible, we have reduced the number of needed parts and invested massively in refining. And producing the remaining pieces to the highest quality achievable.  also using state-of-the-art computer-controlled machines allied with the expert craftsman.

Examples of this approach include the hydraulically formed corners on the amplifiers giving much greater strength, and the one-piece housing for the remote control that looks, feels, and is robust. As with music you are unfamiliar with, genuinely innovative new designs can take time to understand and enjoy. How often have you heard the music you were initially unsure of that has become a firm favourite over repeated listening?

“Our designs are fundamentally different from many other companies. And we hope you will take the time to explore their unique character and qualities because we have not made them further to be different. And I genuinely believe their visual and tactile attributes improve the experience of listening to music, which is our design goal!”
Ross Stevens, DESIGN DIRECTOR

The Amplifier rear panel

Amplifier rear panelThe rear panel has five line-level RCA inputs with Phono RCA. Also included a balanced XLR pair. There is a Pre Out for those that only want to use the pre-amp stage. And the Line Out connection used for archiving or other ancillary equipment. Trigger in and out connectors provide for multi-room or home theatre simplicity. Also, a full-function remote lets you scroll through inputs from your seat. The HT Bypass standby mode for an accurate low-power operation that keeps the circuit active. And delivers peak performance with minimal delay. Also, mute and volume controls, display brightness adjustment and the full complement of CD player functions. And all are available from the remote control unit.

Careful attention is granted to signals and circuit layout with short signal paths. Extracting exciting depth and detail from any musical recording. Taking integrated refinement to a new level, the Hautonga is an amplifier setting new standards for performance, ease of use and reliability.

Amplifier features

PHONO STAGE
A high quality phono stage comes fitted as standard. With two gain settings and fixed loading it allows for trouble free playback with a number of MM or MC cartridges.

LINE OUT
The Line out provides a line level output, carrying the selected source signal. The Line Out allows for the signal to go on to recording equipment, headphone amplifiers or sub-woofer speakers.

REMOTE TRIGGER INPUT AND OUTPUT
Terminals for remote trigger connection allow a processor signal to bypass the preamplifier stage or instigate the power amp to come out of standby.

GROUND LIFT SWITCH
This allows for the signal ground to be isolated from the main chassis earth. This can assist in resolving unwanted ground loops or hum due to duplicate ground paths in some systems.

WBT AND NEUTRIK CONNECTORS
High quality WBT RCA and Neutrik XLR input connectors are fitted along with WBT output speaker terminals to ensure low distortion interface between your cables and the amplifier.

AURIC WIRING
Audience AV supply the Auric OFC wire used in the input stage of the amplifier. The Auric was chosen for its high workability and natural sound.

AUDIOQUEST WIRING
AudioQuest X2 is used in the output stage of the amplifier as a high quality link to the speaker connectors.

Amplifier Specifications
  • POWER
  • 200 watts RMS per channel into 8 ohms. 
  • 280 watts RMS per channel into 4 ohms. Both channels driven from 20Hz to 20kHz at less than 0.2% total harmonic distortion
  • FREQUENCY RESPONSE
  • 20Hz to 20kHz ±0.2dB 
  • -3dB at 5Hz and -3dB at 70kHz
  • DISTORTION
  • Typically <0.05% THD at rated power 
  • 0.2% THD and IM worst case prior to clipping
  • CURRENT OUTPUT
  • 40A short duration peak per channel 
  • Fuse protected
  • SLEW RATE
  • 50V/µs
  • HUM & NOISE
  • 90dB below rated output 20Hz to 20kHz unweighted
  • INPUT IMPEDANCE
  • 47k ohms all inputs 
  • Phono adjustable to 47k ohms, 470 ohms, 
  • 100 ohms,47 ohms, 22 ohms
  • RATED PRE OUT LEVEL
  • 1.5V RMS into 47k ohms or higher
  • PRE OUT SOURCE IMPEDANCE
  • Typically 1.5k ohms
  • PRE OUT MINIMUM RECOMMENDED LOAD 47k ohms
  • LINE OUT LEVEL
  • 190mV at 200 ohms
  • GAIN
  • Line inputs to speaker out: 40dB 
  • Phono Input To Pre-Out: 66dB on high gain, 60dB on low gain
  • POWER/CURRENT CONSUMPTION
  • 600W 
  • 0.4A (92W) 
  • Class AB Idle 0.14A (32W) Standby
  • DIMENSIONS
  • Height: 120mm (4 3/4″)
  • Width: 450mm (17 3/4″)
  • Depth: 400mm (15 3/4″)
  • Weight: 14kg (30lb)
Power amplifier location

Power amplifier testedThe Pilnius ‘Hautonga’ power amplifier was tested in Garso Namai, Kauno g. 31, Vilnius, Lithuania. Lukas Svedas owns the company. I have had a great time the working alongside Lukas. And tested many amplifiers, loudspeakers and audio cables together. As a result, the room size is perfect, and the sound insulation is excellent. And we are always able to experiment with different loudspeakers and audio cables. Time is also not a problem and we are able to test every component with various audio tracks. And we are able to test from the golden oldies to the latest musical release.

Power amplifier  set-up

Amplifier tested

To test the Hautonga amplifier, we placed in the audio rack and ran the cables in the system. The cables used were from Taga harmony and Chord. And the power cable used on the amplifier was provided by Perkune audiophile cables. 

The Hautonga fitted nicely above the Musical Fidelity M6S preamplifier and the M6SPRX power amplifier. The M6s PRE is effectively a preamp without limits. Its wide range of inputs, coupled with excellent performance, means it can form the heart of almost any system, regardless of price. And a pure Class A design capable of driving any power amplifier over any cable length. Also, we were looking forward to seeing how it compared!

Three loudspeakers

Speakers for testing

The Hautonga amplifier would be tested using three different loudspeakers. And would allow every aspect of the amplifier to be heard. Pylon audio, Audiovector and Elac supplied the loudspeakers. With prices ranging from 5,700 – 7,000 Euros. And I would say a reasonable price point for quality loudspeakers.

It is very important when testing a system, to ensure the loudspeakers have many hours of playing time. And are suited to the system. Also as we know the speakers very well, this certainly will be a great test on this new amplifier! 

The Power Amplifier tested

The Elac loudspeakerWe selected three test tracks for the first listening session. And we let the system warm up whilst drinking our morning coffee. After a few runs of testing each loudspeaker with each test track, we decided the Elac ‘Concentro’ S503 was the winner. As it had more of everything the Pylon ‘Jasper’ MK111 or the ‘Audiovector ‘QR7’ had to offer. And I mean MORE because the difference was easily heard. The ‘Elac ‘Concentro’ S503 is supposed to be a true HI-end reference speaker and I can agree to this statement!

And now, the next step was to replace the Musical fidelity amplifier with the Plinius ‘Hautonga’ integrated amplifier. The amplifier connected, and the first track played, keeping the volume at the same position. I looked over at Lukas, and he looked at me, and I realised we both heard the difference in the music! Power amplifier tested

Lukas started the second track as soon as the first test track finished. And this is because I think he wanted to see if the difference was the same as we heard. So the second track played, and when finished, Lukas went straight to the third. And yes, we were in total agreement about the sonic differences heard in the music. Power

And it was like we either heard more in the music. First, the music became more realistic and organic with much better-controlled bass. Which allowed more depth than anything else we heard. Also, the details were more prominent but not overbearing. Finally, the music had more balls to it and the soundstage was so open it was like we were wearing headphones!

Conclusion

For me this has been a really amazing listening session, and  will stay with me for a long time I know. The Pilnius Hautonga amplifier, is an amazing unit and adds more to the music. Which gives a new listening pleasure. But, the one thing I did not like, was the white indicator light used when powered up, as it seemed to be looking back at me!

Author: Tommy Blinder (music producer) Vilnius, Lithuania.

Dated: 14/10/2022

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