The Hot French Amplifier

"Have you heard the Devialet D-Premier amplifier?" asked UK high-end distributor Riccardo Franassovici when I bumped into him in the Magico room. (We were both there to check out the impressive new Q5 loudspeaker that Jason Serinus writes about elsewhere in this report.

"Huh?" I responded. (It was the end of a very long day at CES.)

Riccardo explained that the Devaliet was a small integrated with a novel new circuit and that it could be heard at CES driving the latest version of the glass-cabinet Crystal Arabesque speakers that had so impressed me at the 2009 Show.

I checked it out: with its mirror finish and the fact that it was supported on a glass shelf in front of a mural of an orchestra, the D-Premier was, as you can see, unphotographable. But what I found intriguing was that it connects a small 5W class-A amplifier directly to the speaker, with then a parallel class-D stage providing the necessary current. If you are thinking that that description is reminiscent of the innovative "current-dumping" circuit developed by Quad in the mid-1980s, that's what I thought too (though the Quad circuit used a class-AB current dumper.) Devialet doesn't yet have US distribution, but this is a company to watch.

Stephen Mejias's picture

Where's the amp? I don't see no amp.

John Atkinson's picture

It's the "Predator" model.

Luxist's picture

The Devialet D-Premier is curently showing at the Munich High-End show. They have a very nice room with 2 systems :- one running from a Macbook and an external Weiss firewire soundcard, directly connected in AES/EBU to the D-Premier, to a pair of Magico V3. Lots of air, very nervous and precise demonstration. The music is fluid and no stress at all, very good balance all along the frequencies, the bass is tight and super controlled. And the dynamics are huge on fortes !- the other system is an ideal interior, the elements are lying on a beautiful cabinet, in front of a comfortable couch. An iPod is siting on a Wadia dock directly connected in digital coaxial to a pair of lilliputian Kiso Acoustics HB1. The sound is very dynamic too considering the small size of the speakers. The sound flows without effort and again is very balanced.I read somewhere that Dynamic Audio in Tokyo made it part of its recommended list of components.They see everything, so it cannot be bad.This is really a company to watch !