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Yarland FV34B-V integrated amp

27.05.2016..
Yarland FV34B-V
..

Well met. At ReMusic’s, I am officially in charge of reviewing AAAVT products. Well, it could be embarrassing if the articles are all positive but, so far, I have only see interesting devices with a good quality/price ratio that for me is paramount. Besides, I know professionally and not only Mauro Scarabotti, AAAVT’s owner. He is always enthusiast and positive so that my task here is agreeable and I feel honored.

 

Let us speak concrete. I am reviewing an integrated amplifier with the EL34 power tubes. It belongs to the Yarland series, signed FV34B-V: that means the fifth version of the model. By the way, it is not easy to understand Yarland’s logo. In fact, the change of one letter, A, B or C after FV34, means devices with different tubes and different configurations. We have already reviewed the V version distributed by AAAVT speaking of the model FV34C-V, with EL84 tubes, and rewarded with our Spark In the Dark award. This model has the possibility of digital connections and Bluetooth. Hence, you can have wireless access to smartphones and tablets, mp3 players, laptops all with Bluetooth. In this way, you can amplify files of streaming music with your mobile phone or tablet from your couch and adjust the volume as well. What you need is only an optional Bluetooth receiver, not expensive at all, to connect via USB port placed on the right side: the Multimedia input. We will talk later of this configuration and the quality of its sound.

 

If we look at the display of the tubes, they are in rows of four, two SN3 for external input on the front and two SN2 internal drivers. Behind, four power Shuguang EL34-B, in a circuit with autobias, so without needing periodical adjustments. Between the two rows of tubes, there are two small diverters to put the EL34s in pentode or triode mode. On the front panel two knobs, volume on the left, inputs selections on the right (Line, CD, Aux and Multimedia). On the left, appears what seems a receiver of signals of the remote control, but the amp has not this function, though. On the left panel, there is the on/off toggle switch. On the left panel, besides the USB-B port, is a RCA preamplified input, always handy for a subwoofer or headphone amplifier. Behind the IEC socket with a fuse, are three golden-plated RCA inputs and the clamps for the loudspeakers, selectable for 4 and 8 ohms, of good quality and size that can host banana plugs. All the transformers are under one pierced lid. A rational layout, improved with respect to the previous version: there are a wider tube in the preamplifying circuitry and the addition of multimedia options via USB port. The chassis is compact and enough light, with a fine finish thanks to the insertion of lacquered solid wood.

 

Listening impressions

I have never tested before an amplifier with the EL34 tubes and I was waiting for a sweet and not very deep bass range.

Actually, it is not like that. This amp has a modern tube sound. It is not slow and has a harmonic richness with attacks and releases well organized temporally. It is a bit less imposing and matter with respect to the amp with the KT88, but it is quite closer. The sound image is good, even if you can desire something more in depth and separation of the instruments. However, you can clearly detach the sound planes of the recordings that contain them. I have made the test with loudspeakers that have as strong point the reproduction of the image. I am speaking of the ProAc Studio 125 and the GoldenEar Triton Seven, objects of a future article. Hence, it is possible that with less performing speakers under this aspect you can miss something. However, the performance I heard is pleasant and extended in width and depth.

The dynamics is good but not exceptional considering the power at stake. I have preferred the pentode configuration, 40 watts per channel, because more dynamic and without loss of detail. The tone colour is natural, regular in the frequency ranges without accentuations, with extended bass, and rightly powerful. The voices are delicious as well as the violins and the trebles that are seductive and never harsh.

The Bluetooth for the streaming music works properly with the plus of controlling the musical library and the volume from your listening spot through tablet or smartphone. Greater is the resolution of the files, better is the listening quality. The mains cable I liked best is the Cablerie d'Eupen with custom ends. It has succeeded in dominating the bass range that is not very controlled and some brilliance of the sound. As power cables I have used the 4mm Monitor Bingo Silver and the Audioquest FLX-SLiP 14/4 biwiring for the ProAc. Pay attention, as usual at the electrical phase.

 

Conclusions

Another well-made product in the AAAVT catalogue that, I remind you makes some custom modifications to the original Chinese design, with great improvements in the performances. The added multimedia capacity and the new preamplifying circuit are sound reasons to choose this object capable of pleasing also the expert audiophiles at an always competitive price.

 

 

Selection of listened music

Dire Straits: Love over Gold - LP Vertigo Poligram

Leo Kottke: Greenhouse - LP Capitol

Crosby. Stills, Nash and Young: American Dream - LP Atlantic

Dvorak: Cello Concerto Starker, Dorati, LSO - LP Mercury

Mozart: Concerti per violino n.4 K218 e n.5 K219 - LP Deutsche Grammophon

Stan Getz with Laurindo Almeida - CD Verve Originals

Mike Melillo Trio: Live at the Deer Head Inn - CD Red Records

Oskar Motet Choir: Cantate Domino - file wav

Talking Heads: The best - file wav

 

Official technical specifications

Type: push pull autobias stereo amplifier

Tubes complement: 4x EL34 or 6CA7 / KT77, 2x 6N3/5670, 2x 6N2

Bandwidth: into 4ohm and 8ohm: 20Hz-20kHz +/-1db - 15Hz-40kHz +/-2,5dB

Maximum output power: 40+40W RMS (4 and 8ohm in ultralinear), 20+20W RMS (4 and 8ohm triode)

Headphone output: 16-120ohm

Signal to Noise ratio: 90dB

Channel separation: 0,5dB

Input impedance: 100K at 1kHz

Inputs: CD, AUX, Line, Multimedia

Power consumption: 320VA

Dimensions: 320x170x280mm (WxHxD)

Weight: 17kg

 

Official Italian dealer: to AAAVT website

Official current price in Italy: 1,025.00 EUR

Associated equipment: to Fabio “Puzzled” Barbato’s system

 

 
by Fabio Barbato
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