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Front and back of the GR1440 monoblock

Reference Amplifiers

The challenge of driving Genesis loudspeakers is that they are such excellent transducers that they expose the flaws, or highlight the quality, of everything up the chain - something that almost every review of Genesis loudspeakers has mentioned. Hence, they demand a very well-designed and well-executed power amplifier.

When we developed the Limited Edition line of affordable valve amplifiers as proof of concept that you did not need a megabuck and/or kilowatt amplifier to drive a pair of Genesis loudspeakers, they garnered rave reviews, and sold out quickly. Reviewers took to calling them "reference quality" (Srajan Ebaen - on 6moons), conveying "all the benefits of tube amplification with virtually none of the drawbacks" (Jason Victor Serinus - Secrets of Home Theater and Hifi), "robust, powerful, and full of life" (Jack Roberts - Dagogo).

 

However, much more than how "reference quality" they are, the objective of the design is to play music with true verve and emotion - not just satisfy some specification. "I was surprised how musically enjoyable the Genesis I60 was" (Jack Roberts - Dagogo) "...the M60's delivered. Drenched with feelings, I wiped away a few tears and ironed out plenty of goose bumps." (Srajan Ebaen - 6moons)

 

A new Genesis amplifier had to be better than the M60s in all aspects. The design brief was simple, a load invariant, high-current, wide-bandwidth amplifier that would allow the musical performance to come to life. In addition, the new amplifiers had to be capable of driving any model in the Genesis range, from the Genesis 7.1 petite to the towering flagship - the Genesis 1.1.

 

The Genesis Reference Amplifier challenges the status quo of music amplifiers by marrying the advantages of tube (imaging, soundstage, and portrayal of tonal colors) with solid-state (control, dynamics and accuracy).

 

Technical Details

The Genesis Reference Amplifier challenges the status quo of music amplifiers by marrying the advantages of tube (imaging, soundstage, and portrayal of tonal colors) with solid state (control, dynamics and accuracy). To achieve this, we had to develop some ground-breaking technologies.

 

Dynamic Power Delivery Supply (DPDS)

 

Traditional DC power supplies developed with established design principles are usually specified into a constant current draw with a resistive load. However, except for Class A amplifiers (and Class AB at low power), the load is not constant. The power supply is hence specified for the maximum current drawn, but such a huge power supply is often slow, resulting in a dark, brooding, muscle-bound sound.

 

The Genesis DPDS, on the other hand, is designed to deliver current into a non-linear, dynamic musical load, leading to a sense of power with finesse. The result is that the Genesis Reference Amplifier has the dynamics, extension and drive of high-power transistor amplifiers without the muscle-bound sound, and the elegance, emotion and tonal colors of flea-powered single-ended triode tube amplifiers without being weak or flaccid.

 

The origins of the DPDS comes from the principles of tube amplifier design – some of the qualities of tube amplifiers were as much to do with power supply design as the choice of tubes over transistors. Because of the high voltages involved, tube amplifiers use relatively small capacitors and chokes to produce smooth DC power.

 

Transistor amps use cheaper/larger electrolytic capacitors to do much the same job. From this we discover a very simple fact, smaller capacitors usually sound better. There is good science to predict that the high frequency performance of large capacitors will be poor.

 

There are lots of very small solid-state amplifiers that have excellent sound. They all had tiny power supplies, and the smaller the power supply, the “faster” they sounded. On the other hand, very large power amplifiers with huge capacitors, or even large banks of smaller capacitors in their power supplies tended to sound dark and slow.

 

This is the issue of speed vs power. The sprinter is not able to sustain the delivery of power for very long, but the marathon runner is not able to deliver very quick bursts of speed. The DPDS is like a relay team with sprinters, medium-distance, and long distance runners in the team. Thus, it is able to deliver high sustained power, as well as very quick bursts of speed.

 

Such a “relay team” is what gives the Genesis Reference Amplifier the excellent micro-dynamics, tonal contrasts and timbre textures of low-powered amplifiers, and yet is able to deliver huge dynamics and the sustained deep bass of muscle amps.

 

The basic DPDS in the Genesis Reference Amplifiers has a “relay team” of seven. This was the point at which further enhancement of the “relay team” produced diminishing returns. Nevertheless, this is also assuming that the amplifier is used to drive a pair of Genesis loudspeakers with its built-in servo-controlled bass amplifier.

 

Super Silent Low Voltage Supply

 

We recognized that published specifications for noise rejection of opamps and even discrete small-signal amplification circuits did not always tell the whole story. The problem is that PSRR is usually measured at one frequency – usually 1kHz, but then rapidly gets much worse as the frequency rises. Hence the necessity for line power conditioning.

For the Genesis Reference Amplifier, a low-current regulated power supply was developed that has broad bandwidth noise rejection so that RFI coming in over the power lines do not intrude on your music.

 

Other Features

  • A grounded Faraday Cage chassis for RFI and EMI rejection improves micro-dynamics and tonal colors and contrast.

  • Balanced components, in the push and the pull parts of the power supply, and having critical components toleranced to less than +/- 1% results in a sense of aliveness and ease in the music.

  • Special circuitry to “keep things warm” without wasting a lot of electricity means that your system is ready for you to listen to whenever you are.

  • Add-On options & modules.

Acoustic Suspension System

 

The Genesis Reference Amplifier comes with an acoustic suspension system that isolates the amplifier from floor or structure borne vibrations. Designed like the suspension system of a race car, the acoustic suspension is made of an acrylic suspension frame, neoprene shock absorbers tuned to the weight of the amplifier module, and steel spikes to anchor the suspension frame to ground. The Acoustic Suspension System is also available as an optional upgrade to the Maximum Dynamic Headroom Reservoir.

 

Frequency Response

10Hz to 50kHz, +0db/-3dB

Power Bandwidth

18Hz to 36kHz

Output Power (1% THD @ 4ohm

180 watts or 360 watts

Distortion (20Hz to 35kHz)

0.015%

Input Impedance (balanced)

100k Ohm

Damping (@ 4 ohm)

2,000 min

Gain

26dB

Peak Output Current

limited to 20 amps after 40ms

Inputs

Balanced XLR OR Single-ended RCA

Outputs

ETI CablePods™

Amplification Module Dimensions and Weights

W 17.5" x H 3.5" x D 13", 23lb

W 445mm x H 86mm x D 330mm, 10.5kg

Acoustic Suspension Dimensions and Weights

W 18.5" x H 1.5" x D 14", 5lb

W 470mm x H 36mm x D 356mm, 2.2kg

Power Module

W 9" x H 4.5" x D 12", 32lb

W 228mm x H 114mm x D 228mm, 14.5kg

Specifications may change without notice.

 

GR1440 Monoblock Amplifiers in KOSMIC Room 1 Reference Music System

 

KOSMIC is proud to be an authorized dealer for Genesis Advanced Technologies in the Washington State area. We are currently demonstrating Genesis loudspeakers at our Seattle showroom by appointment only. Please contact us to schedule an appointment for demonstration. If you do not have an authorized dealer in your area we can help you.

 

 

Call Us 206-878-3833 or email sales@kosmic.us

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PRICES

 

GR360

360WPC Stereo

$8,000 each

 

GR720

720W Monoblock

$15,000 per pair

 

GR1440

1440W Monoblock

$23,000 per pair

 

 

Genesis products are only sold through authorized dealers. KOSMIC is proud to be the authorized dealer for Washington State. We cannot ship into states that have a Genesis dealer. However, if you do not have a dealer in your state, we would be happy to provide sales and support. See Genesis Web Site for list of authorized dealers. Please email sales@kosmic.us or call 206-878-3833 for availability. All Genesis products are SPECIAL ORDER.

 

REVIEWS

 

To Frederic Beudot of 6moons.com, the GR360 is "an amplifier getting out of the way in every way possible to let more of the music flow. More veracity, more ambiance, more space." He calls it an amp with "gorgeous soundstage, luscious tones and plain emotional connectivity with the ability to drive just about any speaker ever designed."

 

from Frederice Beudot also reviews the Maximum Dynamic Headroom Reservoir and gives Genesis a Blue Moon Award for the Genesis Reference amplifier with the Maximum Dynamic Headroom Reservoir for both value and absolute performance.

 

"As for how much I came to enjoy the Reference GR180, I think the "L" word finally applies. I loved this amp. I felt good when I listened to it. I wanted to hang out with it as long as I could, and I know I could easily live with and enjoy this amp for a long time. The classical music I mostly listen to came across extremely well through the GR180, and the fun stuff -- jazz and world music -- sounded as good as it ever has.

I’m delighted to say that, for my taste in music, class-D has finally arrived. Gary Koh has created something special with the Genesis Reference GR180, and the sound quality it conveys is simply outstanding for its price. Kudos to you, Mr. Koh!

. . . Albert Bellg, Ultra Audio"

 

AWARDS