Aesthetix Atlas Stereo
Saturn Series 200W Stereo Power Amplifier
The Aesthetix Atlas amplifiers are capable of driving virtually any high quality speaker. An innovative hybrid design incorporates a bipolar output stage, bipolar driver stage, and vacuum tube input gain stage. They stand alone as the only hybrid amplifiers with zero feedback, essential for maintaining harmonic integrity, air, space and coherence. The Atlas provides your choice of full range or high-pass inputs. This unique built-in filter is ideal for speakers featuring powered woofers, or for audio and home cinema systems using outboard powered sub-woofers. Saturn Series design themes are evidenced in the specialised all-aluminium chassis construction and elaborate power supply design. The Atlas has enjoyed worldwide acclaim for its sound quality, build quality, flexibility and ease of use.
The Atlas has the following features:
- Zero feedback, fully differential amplifier with complementary balanced bridge design for open sound.
- Tube gain stage using one 6SN7 tube per channel provides harmonic accuracy and soundstage layering. This single gain stage provides all of the voltage gain for the entire amplifier.
- Stereo amplifier: 200 watts per channel into 8 ohms; 400 watts per channel into 4 ohms
- Amplifier has a built-in high-pass crossover: 6 dB / octave, 16 settings from 40 Hz to 200 Hz in approximate 10 Hz increments.
- Single-ended and balanced inputs provide extended compatibility.
- Direct input bypasses all crossovers and switching for ultimate purity.
- Bus technology reduces power supply impedance between output devices for more instantaneous current.
- Power supply uses two transformers and three chokes. The high current section uses a dedicated transformer and choke input power supply. The vacuum tube B+ power supply has choke input and is discretely regulated. The result is unequalled clarity and control.
- Cardas patented rhodium-plated binding post with single knob lockdown.
- All aluminum chassis construction assures durability.
- Stainless steel cover for transformers prevents magnetic fields from interacting with sensitive audio circuitry, preserving low level musical nuances.
- RS232 control and trigger for special installation requirements.
All of this attention to detail has resulted in a power preamplifier that transcends what is normally expected from an audiophile piece of equipment. The Atlas scales heights that are normally the realm of uber-expensive products and it does it with ease. Sound quality is the prime objective here and the Atlas is a phenomenal achievement. This value for money quality is spoken about in all the audio press and the Atlas has accumulated many awards & accolades. These reasons are why Aesthetix products have developed a passionate following around the world.
Select a Specification to Suit Your Needs
The Atlas is available in 3 versions, depending on the level of specification required.
- Standard edition.
Atlas Signature Series
- Atlas Stereo Signature uses the same circuits as the standard Atlas Stereo, but those circuits are implemented with only the highest quality parts available.
- The standard versions of Atlas use very high quality Rel-Caps as inter-stage coupling capacitors, while the Signature upgrades these with Peter Moncrief’s Stealth capacitors, costing over 10 times as much. These provide more detail and information, while maintaining the same award-winning tonal balance.
- High current output stage power supply capacitance is doubled, increasing bass drive and solidity.
- Binding post wiring is upgraded to specialized audiophile 14 AWG, which further increases resolution.
- Another critical refinement is the replacement of all emitter resistors with a specialized metal foil low-inductance type.
Atlas Eclipse Series
The newest version of Atlas includes the use of new exotic capacitors, electrical upgrades including super-matched output devices and distributed node technology; advanced mechanical chassis isolation; and sophisticated electrical signal grounding. As an option, beautiful new polished-aluminium casework is available that is both more rigid and has better damping properties.
- The Atlas Eclipse Stereo features the Stealthcap™ capacitor, made with exotic new conductors, dielectric material, and composite resins to dramatically reduce reflections, enhancing focus and articulation with blacker backgrounds.
- The output stage of Atlas Eclipse Stereo features Super Matched Pair output devices, lowering certain output stage distortion components by as much as 40dB. In every version of the Atlas, each Bi-polar output device (16 per channel) is supplied power through a copper bus bar design, radically reducing impedance compared to standard circuit board traces. In the Eclipse version, Distributed node film capacitors are added at each output device, further reducing impedance for increased current capacity and improved transient capability.
- Critical power supply components: high voltage transformer, high voltage choke, and driver choke, are de-coupled from the chassis using specially designed isolation mounts. This dramatically reduces the amount of mechanical vibration introduced into the chassis.
- Since the transformers are no longer in contact to the chassis at multiple points, a single point system is used to ground the transformer cases, further reducing AC-induced noise. Power supply wiring for the high current section, already robust 14 gauge in Standard and Signature versions, is upgraded to the equivalent of 12 AWG multi conductor audiophile wiring.
- (Optional) The casework is replaced with machined aluminium pieces that are bolted together using a highly rigid joinery technique… they act as one. In black, the panels are polished to a beautiful reflective sheen. In silver, they are finished in a gorgeous matte texture.
The Absolute Sound, Don Saltzman, 2020
All in all, my listening experience with the Atlas Eclipse monos was thoroughly enjoyable. They are extremely transparent… all music emerges out of a completely black and quiet sonic background, thereby enhancing low-level detail. Further, these amps are very powerful, easily getting the best performance from my inefficient Magnepan 20.7s without any strain or sense of compression… Over time it became apparent that these amplifiers do not impose any particular sonic signature upon the music and, far more often than not, reveal air, space, and detail lost on lesser gear. Moreover, in the low frequencies the Eclipse amps seem to exceed the performance of many tube amplifiers in that they exhibit the power and tight control of high-power solid-state amplification, yet without dryness or loss of instrumental texture.
The HiFi Specialist, David Denyer, 2020
The Eclipse amps also excelled at retrieving the passion of the performance… they show-cased the sheer exuberance of the performers; they were clearly having a great time and, as a listener, the fun was contagious. I could, and did, listen for hours on end without fatigue. You know you are on to something good when a new piece of gear prompts you to pull out more and more of your favourite music.
The Absolute Sound, Product of the Year Awards, 2020
What Hi-Fi?, 2015
There are no hard edges here, no tendency to harshness, even with less than perfect recordings. Yet the unusual thing here is that these components – the pre and power share the same sonic character – partner this civility with sledgehammer muscle when required. That combination of abilities is rare, even among the priciest of products. We’re struck by the solidity of the sound first, followed by the clean and precise way this amplifier defines the shape of the piano notes. There’s just so much detail on offer, with the Aesthetix delivering a full dose of the harmonic richness of the instrument.
The first difference you notice is the velvety black background silence. From there, an incredible transparency emerges, revealing a new richness of subtle musical information and spatial imaging. The next thing to hit you will be the clarity of focus and stunning coherence, where every part of the music comes together and all elements are articulately focused and united in every moment, with no time smear or blurring. This in turn gives a stunning dynamic impact: since all parts of every musical note are united at the same moment, they all add up to a higher transient peak, thus reproducing the recording’s dynamics much more accurately.
HiFi+, Roy Gregory, 2014
These amps are good enough and communicative enough to put you really close to the performers and their performance. With unforced power and a real sense of presence, they project music with an uncannily natural sense of pace, flow and colour. The Janus, despite the astonishing value, will clearly only appeal to those who use, or want to get back into using, vinyl. That makes the cost of the phono-stage in the Janus pretty much a revelation to many listeners – especially those used to the one size fits all approach adopted by so many manufacturers. It’s not until you use these Aesthetix electronics together that you realize their full potential – and believe me, that potential is considerable!
The Audio Beat, Roy Gregory, 2014
The Janus and Atlas Signature models can form a solid, beating musical heart, right at the center of such systems. Listen to them and I think you will be shocked by just how much musical energy they deliver, the authority with which it arrives and just how much sense it makes when it does. Considering that, as far as Aesthetix are concerned, these products are one notch above entry level, I find it remarkable just how completely satisfying they are to use. For Aesthetix, they may well only be one rung up the performance ladder, but for many a listener they are going to represent an approachable, practical and musically satisfying endgame — just the endgame many of them will have been seeking out for many a long year.
Stereophile, Wes Phillips, 2010
Naming an amplifier after the Titan who supported the firmament—or the world itself—is a gutsy thing to do. However, Jim White’s Aesthetix Atlas makes a strong case for a power amp being the structural support of a hi-fi system. Certainly, the construction and quality of the Atlas are in keeping with its namesake. But for all its strength and grunt, the Aesthetix Atlas revealed itself to be quite graceful in its portrayal of music and music’s physical, insubstantial substance…It’s one of the really great amplifiers I’ve had in my system recently, and I hope I’ll be listening to it even more in the months to come.
What HiFi?, 2008
In overall terms, it remains the best we’ve heard at this price level or anywhere near it.
Features & Specifications
Stereo Power Amplifier
200wpc channel into 8 ohms, 400wpc into 4 ohms
60mV (1 watt), 2.3V (full power)
0.25 at 1kHz
Signal to Noise
Bandwidth at full power
4 – 150kHz
Rated THD at full power
100 watts at idle
457 (W) x 203 (H) x 483 (D) mm including jacks
Black or Silver
3 years, non-transferable.