AAAVT TA2022 integrated amp

03.12.2012..

The class-D amplifiers pertain to a very lively world where the large number of implementations have occurred in always shorter periods, pursuing the good sound with budget steps and not only. The phenomenon has officially started a couple of years ago with the famous T-amp introduced in our market by a Lucio Caddeddu’s article on TNT-Audio web magazine.

Today we are going to speak of the AAAVT TA2022 amp: a worthy and advanced exponent of this progeny. Commercialized in Italy and made in China, it is a compact integrated amplifier. As it features a USB port, it targets the users of streaming music. However, in retrospect, this apparent target seems a bit limitative in respect to its potentialities. But let us do this in an orderly fashion.

 

This AAAVT amplifier has a basic design, which aims more to the functionality than to the frills. Nevertheless, its look and its finish are more than acceptable. In the middle of the frontal shows up the round metallic volume knob, not very pleasant to manipulate or touch for its rough edged notches. The dimensions of the TA2022 are contained, like a shoebox for kids, but the weight is reassuringly remarkable: about 3,5 kg. On the frontal, the commands comprise five round buttons. One of these, on the right side of the volume knob, serves to commutate between the rear RCA input and the front USB input. The USB input, of the A type, is required to connect pendrives, hard disks, i-pods, memory cards, etc. and it is remote-controlled, while the RCA input is sensible only to the volume knob in manual configuration. In USB mode, it is possible to change the volume and control the sequence of the tracks with the remote control. A small screen helps us with red leds that show only the number of the tracks, I think following a temporal sequence of inlet into the USB device. Unfortunately, the functioning of the small screen is not explained in the instruction card. For the USB manual operation, there are three small buttons at the left side of the volume knob. At the extreme left, there is a minijack headphone output. Below it there is the in/out button. In the rear, from right to left, there is the IEC mains input, provided with the fuse, ready to host appropriate power cables, a good terminal block to connect the loudspeakers and a pair of RCA to connect a single external device: a CD or DVD player, a turntable with phono preamp or a tuner.

 

Inside we find the Tripath TA2022 chip installed on a congruous heat sink, a not removable OPA2134 op-amp, two air-spiral inductances and, last but not least, a substantial toroidal for the power supply which has been put in the bottom and it is physically separated through a plate on the top part containing the solid state components on PCB. Everything is enclosed in a case made of two half metallic shells. The frontal and fhe rear plate are made of thick aluminum. Not bad at all.

 

Concerning the sound performances, I have tried to test the device in several configurations. The character I have noticed is robust, with a rather generous current supply and the ability of making appreciate the dynamic features of the musical playback. It can drive difficult loudspeakers like the Magneplanar MMG in a quite acceptable way. Timbrically it prefers the mid -high range. The low frequencies are quick and agile but not particularly deep and immanent. They are not missing, of course, but it is not the part of the spectrum that is more highlighted and valorized in the listening sessions. In my opinion, the point of strength of this amp is the mid range, mostly with the male voices, well reproduced and rich of nuances and details. Also the high range is well in evidence but sometimes, depending on the other components, it needs to be controlled maybe using copper power cables rather than silver, to avoid tiredness and artifact sounds, like sibilants and hardenings. The image is not a point of strength even if a trace of three-dimensionality, with the proper recordings, can be easily perceived. The headphone output drives effortlessly and satisfactorily my reliable Sennheiser HD600 and gives pleasant and detailed listening sessions.

The use of the USB connection, notwithstanding the convenience of the remote control, has a sound output inferior than with the RCA analogue input. It is however appreciable if you consider the practicality of the MP3 files, better, as usual, if at 320 kbs. Their handling is not easy with the only help of the small screen on the amp, though. Other formats, like WAV o FLAC, are not accepted.

In conclusion, this AAAVT TA2022 can be considered interesting, with good power and driven capability, small dimensions and a sound that is dynamic and brilliant although sometimes too enthusiast on the high range. At his list price of 169.00 euro, it is a real bargain, also taking into account the plus of the remote controlled USB port and the headphone output of a passable level. With cables and synergic components, the sound performances can reach satisfying levels.

 

 

Selection of listened music

Miles Davis - In a silent way. CD Blue Note

Dave Brubeck - Take five. CD Columbia Records

Brahms - Violin Concerto, Szeryng, Dorati, LSO. CD Mercury

Rumer - Seasons of my soul. MP3 320kbs

Ceccarelli, Dadi, Spinetti - Inventario. MP3 320kbs

Ani Di Franco - Which side are you on? MP3 320kbs

 

Official technical specifications:

Inputs: 1 Aux + 1 USB

Distortion: 0,015% THD at 70W 4ohm; 0,015% THD at 45W 8ohm; 0,10% IHF-IM at 25W 4ohm

Signal to Noise ratio: ≥95dB

Frequency Response: 20÷20.000Hz ±1dB

Sensitivity: 200mV ±10mV

Output Impedance: 4-8ohm

Power supply: 230V/50Hz

Dimensions: 205x100x380mm (WxHxD)

Weight: 3,5kg

Official Italian dealer: to AAAVT website

Official current price in Italy: 169.00 EUR

Associated equipment: to Fabio "Puzzled" Barbato's system

 
by Fabio Barbato
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