This is my main system (basement), changing slowly but will eventually get there.  Next upgrade will probably be room treatments followed by replacing the 851N with a PS Audio DSD Jr.  After those upgrades it will probably be time to experiment with different amps - class A and tube. Streaming Tidal and have barely listened to a CD in the last couple years.  Will eventually need a NAS for streaming my CDs that are not in the Tidal library.

Also plan to knock the wall down to the right of the chair and make one room.  Will then be able to move speakers 5 feet out from front wall but will lose 1 foot in width.  I think that's a good tradeoff.  Right now the speakers are 6.5 feet apart, center-to-center, and I sit about 7 to 8 feet back.

Room Details

Dimensions: 15’ × 14’  Medium
Ceiling: 7’

Components Toggle details

    • Cambridge Audio Azur 851N
    • Parasound Halo A21
    Pushing 400 watts into DIs
    • Arcam Diva CD72
    • Linear Tube Audio MicroZOTL2
    • Tekton Design Double Impact
    Upgraded version
    • AudioQuest CV-8
    • Cerious Technologies Graphene Extreme
    • Brick Wall 8R Series
    Line conditioner/surge protection

Comments 11

The MZ2 is only one watt into 4 ohms and the A21 is 400 watts into 4 ohms.  I think the MZ2 amp section should be used as a headphone amp only, or a pre to virtually any other amp.  I say "virtually any other amp" because the output impedance is only 2 ohms and should match with any amp regardless of the amps input impedance.

I put about 120 hours on the MZ2 amp section and still found the sound thin.  I see real potential if it had 20 or 30 watts (or more).  Even though the sound was much thinner than the A21, it still had good air and space.  The sound signature was definitely different - in a good way.  It was what I expect to hear from a good tube amp. The potential is there but the watts were not.  At 12 o'clock on the dial the MZ2 was putting out about 70 dB.  I would definitely consider the more powerful LTA amp offerings if I were in the market.  I would love to hear shootout between the A21 and ZOTL10.  Hope this answers your question.


When I mentioned about "comparison", it was more in the sense of - Watts being equal, how does the ZOTL technology compare with JFET technology? IS the sound more sweet, open, etc. Of course the A21 is more powerful. But the Tekton is fairly efficient and if you match the MicroZotl with Parasound how does the sound compare?
BTW, in your system (at least the pics), the Tektons do not look overbearing as they do in some systems, which is a good thing.


If you are talking about comparing the 3 watts from the MicroZOTL2 to the A21, then there's no comparison. The A21 is light years ahead, at least in my system. The MZ2 as an amp sounds fairly anemic.  But as a pre MZ2 is fantastic. However, the MZ2 is a fantastic headphone amp, although I seldom listen to headphones. 


I had considered the Tektons. And I see that we have at least 2 components in common - the Parasound and the BrickWall.
How would you compare the sound of the Parasound Vs the MicroZOTL2 with the Tektons? BTW, your room looks very nice and cozy!


The 851N is being used as a streamer and DAC and connected to the MicroZOTL2. I tried it direct and did not care for the sound on my system. As a passive pre, the 851N was very detailed but dry and 2 dimensional. Just my impression but could be different on another system. 


Hi I have a very similar setup. 
I believe your 851N is being use as a preamp controlling volume as well? 
Hooked up directly to the Parasound? 


The use of AWG 10 gauge copper presents the lowest and most economical solution to reducing the line loss (copper loss) during bass transients. I say economical because at AWG 8, the wire becomes very visible.

Now, grouping:

The use of type SOOW cord is elegant because it firstly is waterproof and very flexible. Using AWG 10, 4-Conductor means one piece of rubber from amplifier chain to the speaker terminals. This, is because you are bi-amplifying on the same speaker housing. Professional sound reinforcement contractors tend towards the SOOW solution as it is the neatest to bind and solves the voltage drop issue. Usually, SOOW is found in power cords, where the "3-Conductor" variety serves. Bi-amped speakers go real well with the
"4-Conductor," (RED, BLK, WHT, GRN), and the choice of inner and outer insulation(s) (different, but unique) makes for a good assembly dressage.


nothing wrong with that setup, your wife needs a hobby of her own.
Single wire run with high quality jumper wire. Cheers


That's about the cleanest wire/cable setup I've seen.  Maybe you should replace the wife....J/K !!!


Thanks mjcmt.  It's a fun hobby, but not cheap.


Good stuff! Love the choices you made on the electronics.


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