Valve Amplification Company -VAC
Every finely crafted VAC instrument is refined to bring music to life with stunning vividness and realism and to convey music with the very breath of life present in the recording studio or concert hall. VAC products are masterpieces because they allow each recorded performance to be heard with the musical authenticity the musicians intended. To bring this sonic purity and dimension of sound to the discerning ears of our customer, VAC uses vacuum tube technology almost exclusively. A passion for superb sound quality and expert attention to detail is also required to refine each piece to its peak of performance. Great care is evident in every note sounded by a VAC instrument. This is an appreciation that can only grow over a lifetime of listening for the music lover. Listen and let the sound be your guide!
XtremeFidelity is proud to be a VAC Select Dealer- one of the very few selected by VAC to carry their premier Statement line of products.
Statement 450iQ Monoblock Amplifier
The VAC iQ System is the result of 18 years of research and development by the engineers at VAC, and represents the first time in history that each tube in the output stage of a vacuum tube amplifier can be held precisely at the optimal bias point (underlying true quiescent current) at all times, regardless of how loudly or softly the music is playing. The result is sound that is always the best it can be, reduced distortion and noise, longer tube life, elimination of gas current ‘run away’ tubes, and increased reliability, all without any effort by the user.
The VAC iQ System also alerts you when a tube is growing weak or has failed. In short, tube drama is a thing of the past.
The Statement iQ power amp also features newly improved output transformers (56 pounds per monoblock!) with smoother, more extended frequency response. Input signal handling has been changed to a more pure, direct connection. Various changes to the power supply and chassis materials compliment and support the iQ system and circuit refinements.
Mono block amplifier; 450 watts
Statement 450S iQ Stereo Amplifier
The 225-watt/channel Statement 450S iQ is a reduced-scale application of all of the techniques, concepts, and parts developed for the larger Statement 450 iQ. It is appropriate for the highest quality systems where space is a consideration or where extreme power is not needed. The 128-pound audio chassis is floated via an energy decoupling tripod atop the 88-pound power supply. Simply put, this heirloom quality instrument is second only to the Statement 450 monoblocks for reproducing music with the “breath of life” that is always our goal.
The Statement 450S iQ power amplifier features the VAC iQ Intelligent Continuous Automatic Bias System (U.S. patent number 8,749,310, worldwide patents pending).
Signature 200 iQ Amplifier
This 100 watt per channel stereo, 200 watt monoblock powerhouse features the exclusive patented *VAC iQ Continuous Automatic Bias System,the only system able to hold each power tube's true underlying idle current perfectly steady at all times.
Stereo or monoblock operation.
Master 300 iQ Musicbloc Amplifier
NEW from VAC! Born of the latest "Musicblock" amplifier technology from VAC Statement products, the new Master 300iQ delivers 300 watts/ch in mono; 160 in stereo mode. Fully balanced from input to output, with the single-ended inputs balanced by transformers to provide the input signal with a proper interface to the all-balanced circuitry of the amplifier design. Input and driver circuits are direct coupled and implemented with highly linear low mu cotal triodes that operate in full class-A. Output stages are KT88 driven, with bias optimized by VAC’s patented iQ Intelligent Continuous Automatic Bias System.
Sigma 170iQ Integrated Amplifier
The new VAC Sigma 170i is the world’s first integrated amplifier with the patented iQ Continuous Intelligent Automatic Bias System. The iQ System holds the true idle point of the output tubes perfectly steady under all conditions, increasing detail & dynamics, lowering distortion & noise, prolonging tube life, and protecting the amplifier. Integrated amplifiers are a great lifestyle choice, and VAC lets you have all of the benefits of tubes without the worry.
With optional MM/MC phono and balanced inputs, the 85 watt/channel Sigma 170i is ready to be the heart of your high end musical experience.
Pure vacuum tube audio circuitry
85 watts/channel into 4, 8, and 16 ohm speakers
Cinema bypass mode for tie in to home theater
True Class A triode tube line stage
Pure analogue volume control
Optional MM/MC phono with adjustable MC loading
Optional balanced input
Available glass/machined aluminum cage
Fascia available in black or silver metal flake paint
Hard chrome knobs and iQ display bar
Gold Lion KT88 output tubes
Premium Cardas RCA & speaker connectors
Hand made in the United States by VAC
Statement Line Stage
The Statement Line Amplifier is a high current, low impedance, balanced Class A1 triode vacuum tube amplifier. While inherently balanced in design, its high precision wideband transformers accomplish conversion to single-ended operation in a sonically transparent way.
Mechanical Design The chassis is machined at VAC from high-grade, non-ferrous aluminum and processed through a series of plating steps. The resulting AICuNiCr chassis possesses superior RF rejection properties across a wide range of radio frequencies for greater resolution and subjectively blacker backgrounds. Similar care is taken around each of the six wideband audio transformers in each unit. In addition to the five regular line inputs, three of which may be used with balanced sources, there is also a fixed volume input for use as a slave in a multichannel home theater system, or with other sources that control their own level. The “cinema” source may also be balanced or single ended.
Electrical Design The audio chassis is designed with distinct isolated sections dedicated to certain signal functions to prevent unwanted interactions among the circuits. Interconnecting wires are carefully routed and directed by spaced machined nonmetallic guides. The hand-wired vacuum tube audio circuit assemblies are bonded to massive brass loading plates, which in turn are isolation mounted to the main chassis for a very effective filter at audio frequencies. The avoidance of negative feedback and inclusion of input and output transformers confers the relatively unique trait of eliminating unwanted stray interactions between the source components and power amplifier, such as long chain interactions between their feedback loops which tend to coarsen the sound and flatten the sound stage.
Power Supply A massive separate power supply is a dual mono design with substantial energy storage and high inherent regulation. Both resistive and inductive elements are used in concert with high-speed capacitor assemblies for the high voltage supplies, while active voltage stabilization is included in the four heater supplies and the 12-volt trigger supply.
Remote The remote control is a massive one-pound multisection potentiometer some two inches long and nearly two inches in diameter, with machined brass shielding between the sections and against the outside world. This extraordinary part is critical in obtaining the highest fidelity in the world.
This VAC Statement dual mono triode vacuum tube phono (MM/MC, three gain modes, adjustable load, stereo/mono operation) preamplifier is designed for extreme applications. On the back panel there are two DC umbilical cords and large Amphenol aerospace connectors, a reminder of the massive dual mono power supply. There are inputs for four independent phone sources. In addition, each input may be of the conventional single-ended type or may be fully balanced.
Mechanical Design The chassis is machined at VAC from high-grade, non-ferrous aluminum and processed through a series of plating steps. The resulting AICuNiCr chassis possesses superior RF rejection properties across a wide range of radio frequencies. Similar care is taken around each of the six wideband audio transformers in each unit. The front panel features a large machined knob for the four-position selector switch. Another large knob selects overall gains of 52 dB, 70 dB, or 76 dB to match virtually all moving magnet and moving coil cartridges. Smaller knobs provide full control of load impedance, load capacitance, and stereo or mono operation.
Electrical Design The audio chassis’ distinct isolated sections dedicated to certain signal functions prevent unwanted interactions among the circuits. Interconnecting wires are carefully routed and directed by spaced machined nonmetallic guides. The hand-wired vacuum tube audio circuit assemblies are bonded to massive brass loading plates, which in turn are isolation mounted to the main chassis. The eight twin triode vacuum tubes employed in the various Class A 1audio stages are made with the finest grade parts, such as ‘naked’ metal foil resistors. The RIAA equalization is achieved without negative feedback, preserving the organic nature of the sound. A wide range of magnetic core materials and magnet wires were tested and auditioned, including different winding structures, silver and copper magnet wires, and mu metal and amorphous cobalt cores, to determine the ideal combination for the world’s finest phono stage.
Power Supply The massive separate power supply is a dual mono design with substantial energy storage and high inherent regulation. Both resistive and inductive elements are used in concert with high-speed capacitor assemblies for the high voltage supplies, while active voltage stabilization is included in the four heater supplies and the 12-volt trigger supply.
Statement Phono Preamplifier
The design of the all-new VAC Master Preamplifier takes the essential developments from the cost-no-object Statement pre-amplifiers and presents them in their most elemental, effective forms. If the Statement products might be likened to Formula 1 racecars, the Master Preamplifier is the derivative ultra performance road-going sports car.
As in the Statement Line Stage, the volume control is a massive custom-made, multisection, 2.2 kg brass volume control with internal brass shielding. Remote-control capability is implemented via a VAC-designed motor drive system, which allows continuous control of infinite resolution.
All of the hand-wired Class A1 audio circuits are carried on machined, mass-loading plates, which are decoupled from the main chassis.
This projects solidity in detail and imaging while reducing microphony to infinitesimal levels. You’ll find the “naked” z-foil resistors and premium transformers from the Statement Line Stage.
When the Master Preamplifier is equipped with the internal phono option, a separate, dedicated power transformer and DC umbilical cable is added to the power supply, ensuring complete isolation between it and the line section. In essence, it is an external phono stage that just happens to share the chassis, which, in turn, allows a superior control over the ground signal reference that is crucial to conveying signal detail. You’ll also find the same premium resistors and exotic capacitors employed in the Statement Phono Stage.
The VAC Master Preamplifier outperforms every other preamplifier, with the exception of the VAC Statement models that inspired it.
Signature Preamplifier MK IIa SE
Not long ago, the Signature Mk IIa was the finest preamplifier you could buy. In production since 2000, this enduring classic marked the introduction of the basic, fully balanced, zero-feedback, transformer-coupled Class A1 triode topology found in all contemporary VAC preamplifiers. Even from this early form, it preserves and reproduces the emotion and vitality of music and maximizes the performances of the associated source components and power amplifiers.
The Signature’s line stage has no coupling capacitors to detract from the purity and detail of the hand-wired circuit. With no loop feedback, the output is stable and free from dynamic interactions with the load. Six standard line inputs (five when phono is fitted) are present, as well as a fully balanced Cinema Bypass input.
The optional six-tube phono stage is sensitive and quiet, compatible with low-output, moving coil cartridges. Gain is adjustable, as is resistive loading. Electrostatic decoupling prevents the heater circuits from “talking” to each other, a common cause of lost detail. A separate power transformer is used, eliminating any disturbance of the delicate phono signal by the powerful line stage.
The VAC logos are backlit in an elegant blue in normal operation, and display red when the mute is activated. These are set in the heirloom-quality sculpted 3/8” faceplate.
The Signature SE (Special Edition) upgrades the input transformers to the premium designs used in the Statement and Master ranges.
Renaissance Mk V Preamplifier
The Renaissance Mk V Preamplifier replaces the earlier Mk III, and is completely new in circuit, chassis materials, and appearance. In fact, it has more in common with the VAC Statement Series than the prior Renaissance generation.
The line stage circuit is the same transformer- coupled Class A1 balanced triode design found in the Statement Line Stage. The external power supply has dual-mono recti cation and ltering of the crucial high voltage supplies for superb, spacious imaging and great preservation of nuance. The remote volume control is of the direct-acting analogue type and continuously variable, so you easily can the precise level that makes the music snap into focus.
The audio connectors are premium rhodium plated Cardas and Neutrik Professional. There are three high level inputs, two of which may be balanced or single-ended, just like the output.
Vinyl lovers may specify the optional MM MC phono stage, which features three twin triodes operating in pure Class A1, variable MC impedance loading, and purely passive, precise RIAA equalization. The circuit topology is derived from the Signature Mk IIa SE, di ering principally in the number of tubes employed, and uses the same premium MC input transformers. The results rival and exceed those delivered by many more costly separate phono stages. You should expect nothing less of a VAC.
After designing the cost-no-object, award- winning Statement Phono Stage, we approached the Renaissance Phono project with great excitement. How could the lessons learned be applied to a more attainable phono stage?
Could the techniques developed for the Statement be adapted and applied? Would the Statement “DNA” be audible?
It turns out that the sonic family resemblance is uncanny and unmistakable. The stunning Renaissance Phono Stage is already a reference for some turntable manufacturers.
The Renaissance circuit is directly developed from the Statement, incorporating the six twin triode tube stages responsible for the principal ampli cation of the phono signal and RIAA equalization.
Dual mono recti cation, ltering, decoupling, and energy storage is provided in the external power supply and in the audio chassis for spacious imaging, incredible detail, and full range impact. The new chassis design greatly improves EM shielding, with results more similar to the Statement than to earlier VAC preamplifiers.
Three inputs are provided on premium Cardas rhodium RCA jacks. Front panel controls allow you to customize the gain and both MM and MC cartridge loading. You can even select a mono mode to optimize noise and resolution with non- stereophonic recordings.
Compare the Renaissance Phono Stage with others costing many times more, even up to $30,000 or more. Hear your treasured recordings come to life, and we’ll soon be welcoming you to the VAC family.