This acclaimed amplifier is revered among owners of planar speakers (electrostatic, ribbon, etc) because of its ability to drive virtually ANY load presented with great musicality, control and finesse. The original iteration received Harry Pearson's "Editor's Choice / 4-star rating" award. The amplifier operates at very high voltage (90 volts+) and has a prodigious output of 300 watts per channel into 8 Ohms, (600 wpc into 4 Ohms, 1000 wpc into 2 Ohms…) and can safely drive a 1/2 Ohm load!
Unlike most high-power solid-state amplifiers (that have a tendency to sound hard and strident), the ESL-300 utilizes 36 bi-polar output devices -- 18 / channel. Each is capable of delivering 250 watts - combined, all are able to deliver a "staggering" 135 amps of current with a combined power rating of 4500 watts per channel! The ESL-300 design biases each transistor to operate at minimum output capacity -- ensuring that the amplifier is neutral and transparent, & exhibits a very relaxed, smooth and coherent signature, yet possesses tremendous power reserves making it able to drive any speaker with stunning authority. Designer Roger Sanders asserts that "because the amp has so much voltage and current capability, it virtually never clips and doesn't exhibit any transistor sound." Despite its tremendous power output, the amplifier (which runs in Class AB) runs very efficiently, using less than 3 watts / hour when idling.
This amp is in excellent operational condition with no issues. There are a couple of superficial scratches on the front faceplate (thus the "7/10 rating" see close-up), otherwise, the amp is in near MINT condition. The Mk2 iteration improves upon the original with upgraded parts and improved performance.
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