Quick Review of the DLS A3 twin mono amplifier
Well I have had the privilege of owning two of these fine pieces of audio equipment for about 8 months now. Technically it was the best looking two channel on paper I could find and actually afford. A true twin mono design in a single chassis and of course... it was DLS which simply makes **** fine equipment so I had faith in it after owning an A7. While being on the high end price wise of a 150x2 amplifier, it was not in that territory of ridiculous high end home audio prices, and right on the money for what I would pay for a higher end car audio amp.
Basic specs on the amp are as follows, taken from DLS's website.
Number of channels 2
Amplifier class AB
Output power in 4 ohm 2 x 150 W
Output power in 2 ohm 2 x 270 W
Output power in 1 ohm 2 x 425 W
Mono bridge mode 4 ohm 550 W
Mono bridge mode 2 ohm 870 W
Mono bridge mode 1.33 ohm 1000 W
Damping factor > 200
S/N ratio, A-weighted > 100 dB
Input impedance, high level N/A
Input sensitivity 0,2 - 7 Volt
Input impedance > 10kohm
Frequency range 10 Hz - 50 kHz
High pass filter 20 - 200 Hz
Low pass filter 50 - 125 Hz
External cooling fan terminal 1
Dual DC inputs 1
Power consumption (idle) 1,1 A
Power consumption (max) 140 A
Rec. power cable Minimum 2AWG / 33 mm2
Fuses 4 x 30 A
Dimension (W x D x H) 410 x 240 x 73 mm (16,15 x 9,45 x 2,87 inch)
Weight 6,2 kg ( 13,67 lb)
This amp performs as good as it looks. Clarity to the ear in car is as good as any other well built amplifier, hell most good class a/b amps sound the same to me anyways within there specs... but the hard test numbers by magazines say otherwise. They all rate it at the top of the food chain with not much else in it's way. Just perfection in amplification.
Power wise, I am so glad I am able to choose an amp capable of 1000w power supply wise as this baby has headroom! I actually have not found it's limit since it is capable of 150w per side and not a single one of my component sets I have owned can take that much power on a continuous basis. So power delivery is flawless and unstrained. But to be able to have this kind of headroom, it requires power and a LOT of it. The two A3’s I own and the A6 are among the most power hungry amps I have used. I am not running an spl system, nor do I crank it to ear splitting levels so this does not bother me or my charging system.
Being all class a/b I expected this amp when slightly pushed even in two channel mode to get really hot and it does not which is nice. DLS did a bang up job on the heatsinks. Instead of the MOSFETS being attached to a rail on each side of the amplifier, they are all under the circuit board attached directly to the top heatsink and pressed into place with large screws with rubber isolators.
The guts and attention to detail. All in all this amp is pretty much perfect. If I could purchase this exact model for home audio use, I would! Taking off the back cover tells a story of perfection. You can clearly pick out the dual power supplies and while it shares the board, it definitely is a dual mono design. I am no expert on electronics as some may be, but I know enough that when I peak at the internals I smile real big. I do not think I have ever seen so much gold in an amplifier And it is not thin plate, it is Thick. Pics cannot do it justice.
I wish I had the time to post all kinds of test specifications but why bother, the magazines and other private owners have already done the testing for me and I believe every word. The A3 is an amazing piece of equipment after owning it. It is not an amplifier you buy today only to sell off tomorrow for the next latest and greatest. Unless amplifier technology takes a quantum leap forward, it will be a purchase for a lifetime of use and service.
I will also soon post a short review of the mono A6 a/b sub amp I am running as well.
Last edited by desertheat; 12-25-2007 at 10:42 PM.