Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS

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DAC DAC HS wins Audio Beatnik’s Best of 2017 Award !
« Reply #140 on: 21 Dec 2017, 09:18 pm »
Check it out:

"This DAC from Tommy at Digital Amplifier Company was the first DAC that I found to really be much better than the OPPO 105D in my home system...."

Thanks to The Audio Beatnik for this honor!

-Tommy O

Shear Bliss VMPS

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« Reply #141 on: 22 Dec 2017, 04:07 pm »
Congrats Tommy!!

As I had mentioned early on after receiving my TL-DAC DAC I had thought it so good as to get a product of the year award. Discerning ears are taking note of its shear quality in their systems like I.



« Reply #142 on: 29 Dec 2017, 12:12 am »
New In-Line Maraschino owner review:
"....The resolution they produce is intoxicating. Not just resolution, but dynamics are better too...."
Brad / Atlanta GA

More here:

This post originally had the entire review, but Brad posted it himself after.

Thank you for the compliments, Brad!
« Last Edit: 29 Dec 2017, 10:47 pm by AmpDesigner333 »

Early B.

« Reply #143 on: 29 Dec 2017, 08:59 pm »
I recently acquired a pair of In-Line Maraschino amps and I was amazed at what those little Cherry boxes could do. The resolution they produce is intoxicating. Not just resolution, but dynamics are better too. I have always been a skeptic of Class D amplification, but I rolled the dice and purchased the Maraschinos because the reviews were 100% consistent – nearly everyone mentioned the black background, improved resolution, and better dynamics, and that’s exactly what I heard, too. I never realized it, but previously, I used my imagination to make corrections in the deficiencies in my system. With the ILMs, the music just flows through my system and my mind can relax – no mental correction is needed because everything sounds like it should.

I realized several years ago in this hobby that one should invest their money in the best designers, not in gear. For instance, I use this philosophy with Danny at GR Research for exceptional, yet affordable speakers. Now I plan to adopt the same approach with Tommy at D.A.C. because he definitely knows what he’s doing. I look forward to the preamp he plans to debut in 2018.


« Reply #144 on: 5 Jan 2018, 11:07 pm »
"....Detail in spades, great tonal balance, imaging, sound stage, deep controlled bass, and exceptional mid-range...."


« Reply #145 on: 10 Jan 2018, 07:14 pm »
"Hi Tommy, Please add me to your list of VERY happy customers. in 1984 as a student in Waterloo Ontario the best speakers I could afford were Stax SR80 electro-static "ear speakers" which I powered with a modest NAD amp. 25 years later I was introduced to the DAC Cherry STM by Steve M from Sarnia. He recommend that the STM and Stax could be a great pairing. He was right. I'm blown away by the new musical dimensions I hear in familiar jazz, piano and classical recordings - its like discovering a whole new universe. Thank you and continued success."
- Paul S. in Ontario


« Reply #146 on: 16 Jan 2018, 12:02 pm »
"I received my DAC DAC HS three days ago and I'm thoroughly impressed by this magical little box. Along with my Maraschino amps, the sound is resplendent. As most others have already mentioned, the key features are a blacker than black background, super detailed, and very dynamic. I had no plans to trade out most of my system, but you can't go wrong with Tommy's designs. It's a major upgrade for me, and prices are very reasonable."


We are honored to receive this award from the audio beatnik:
    Digital Product of the Year ---- DAC DAC High-Spec Version


« Reply #148 on: 18 Jan 2018, 02:05 am »
"Wait this can't be! :o Detail in spades with tone? No way! No no no way am I hearing this!...."

much more:


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Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #149 on: 16 Feb 2018, 08:58 pm »
Just got my 48V Desktop Maraschino Monoblocks and they rock right out of the box.  My system has never sounded so rich and full.  The combination of the powerful Maraschino amplifiers with my 95db efficient Tocaro 30 loudspeakers creates a dynamic musical synergy.  It's imaging like crazy.  I'm discovering new things in familiar old tracks.  It's the audiophile experience you always hope for, but so rarely achieve.

Earlier in the day I listened to a Vandersteen system that cost well over $100,000, and I honestly liked the way my Maraschinos sounded better.  Less bombastic and pretentious, more warmth, sweetness and heart.  They're that good.

Thanks to Tommy for making a great product, and for the excellent customer service.

Wind Chaser

Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #150 on: 16 Feb 2018, 10:57 pm »
I have over 3000 hours on my Maraschino King's and I will never slum with tubes again.  :green:


Re: No need for a Spectral now!
« Reply #151 on: 17 Feb 2018, 04:04 pm »
I recently bought a pair of Avalon Opus speakers, with ceramic mids and tweets and a dual 9" woofer system. Like many Avalons, they are known as a finicky speaker to get sounding right. They are easily the highest resolution speaker of the 250 or so pairs I've owned, which cuts both ways, of course.

Today I got the King Maraschinos up and running, and they are everything I wanted and more.
What a g** d*** superb amp!
The Avalons are now singing like nothing I've heard in my home in my 49 years in the hobby.
Transparency, image depth, width and solidity, bottom end control. Beautiful detail, air, and delicacy on top. All aces. Perfect immediacy and astonishing detail, yet with notably less brightness and glare. The whole enchilada.
I've probably owned 75 good amps over the years, too, and heard a great many more. Matchups tell the final tale, of course, but these little guys stand tall with anything I've heard at $10k or under, IMO, and would embarrass some MANY higher priced units.
My simple advice if you are looking for a truly great amp that will do justice to even the finest speakers- just contact Tommy and try one. Pretty simple, no brain required.
Just an long term update. After 5 months and ~600 hours listening, I wouldn't change a word. I believe these amps have revolutionized high end amplification. Tommy's amps can get you off the amp (and DAC) merry go round.


MEGAschino Review
« Reply #152 on: 17 Feb 2018, 11:28 pm »
"This was not a problem for the MEGA.  Some of what we listened to was played at high volume levels and there was always the feeling of ease and no sign of strain whatsoever.  The imaging was unbelievable, especially when we listened to Roger Waters - Amused to Death (Master Sound CD).  I think Tommy has another winner on his hands and potentially many new customers."

Much more:


Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #153 on: 18 Feb 2018, 10:49 pm »
This is an overdue plug for Tommy...

Took delivery of ILM amps with the cap upgrade and 60V supplies about two months ago.Tommy,as always, was a pleasure to deal with.Had his DTM amps with 60V supplies years ago and having sold them after nearly two years of use thought I would give the ILM a go.They have been in constant use since arrival and I must say from what I recall of the DTM these little beauties are even more enjoyable.Easy to place wherever along with "rock solid" sound.From top to bottom with all sorts of music I have not even thought of putting the tube amp back in the system.Bought his DAC DAC HS as well and that ups the anti and music just flows...That is about as much I will wax lyrical about the DAC stuff suffice to say... Job Well Done Tommy and Thanks for doing what you do and keeping the price of good listening sane!

Oh no, now a  MEGAschino Cherry ...maybe down the road but the ILM amps are so easy to move if needed and sound fantastic to my ears so they will be here for awhile!


« Last Edit: 25 Feb 2018, 11:25 pm by bellavita »


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Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #154 on: 25 Feb 2018, 08:48 pm »
I bought pair of Desktop Cherries with a 60v PSU and would like to share my observations.  First off, I will share the components in my system.

MAC Book Pro laptop (2.5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 gb ram, 500gb SSD) with a wire world USB cable, Exogal Comet with Outboard PSU, custom made tube preamp with custom outboard power supply, Spatial M3 Turbo S, SVS 4000SB sub, Audio Envy Cables.

The Cherries monos replaced my custom made 2a3 SET amp that I was very happy with. 

So, why try Class D?

I posted on the spatial audio circle and was asking the groups what subs mate well with the M3 Turbo S speakers.  I shared that I had a SET amp with the Spatials and out of nowhere "Wind Chaser" "butted in" and dared to tell me that my SET wasn't a good match with my Spatials and with the right amp I might not need a sub. 

How dare he? 

He went on to say that he had a SET that he loved and that these amps are a mismatch with the Spatial and that there is a hole in the bass freq that really impacts the low end.   He was so adamant that he issued me a challenge.  He said that he would send me a class D amp with no cost and no strings attached. I just pay the $30 for shipping.  No brainer.  I took him up on it.  Note, I used to partner with Steve Fischer who owned a boutique audio store in Michigan in the middle 90's (Soundquest Audio) and we carried one of the first digital amps from Spectron.  At the time, I thought it was very quick, tight bass great air, etc.  I didn't find it as musical as I preferred though.  So, it was the last time I listened to class  D until I met Wind Chaser.

I received the ~$150 amp and used the ground loop wires he sent that needed to be placed in line with the negative speaker terminal and off I went to listen.  I immediately noticed it was cleaner and quieter than my SET.    I heard some notes in the music I had never heard before. Interesting...For so little money, it had me thinking.  It was impressive and so good I called Wind Chaser and asked him if you gave this amp away, what are you using now? He indicated that he was using Digital Amplifier Company's Cherrie Desktop Mono Blocks. How much better could they be? Hmmm. They were obviously more money that this entry level amp, but still very reasonable.  Within a day, I reached out to Tommy and started a dialog.  Before long, I ordered a set on mono blocks and was still a little concerned that the musicality of the amp still might not be near what my SET might provide.  I knew it would quick, detailed, dynamic, etc.  But would it have the timbre of the SET that I fell so in love with. The entry level amp was close in timbre but still not there to my ears.

Knowing my order was on the way, I switched back to my SET until my new amps arrived.  While I was expecting the sound to be not as quick, I was expecting the timbre to be magical.  I immediately started noticing the sound to be a bit colored; I already knew the SET was a bit rolled off at the top, so no surprise there.  Hmm, the shootout will start any day.  What will I really like best?

The new Cherries came in and I hooked them up.

On the first two notes, my wife immediately said: OMG these are a lot cleaner than your other amps. They were so quiet it was a bit freaky. Understand that I have had and auditioned many many amps in my time.  The Blacks are way Black with this amp!  The image opened up so wide and deep that it sounded like a different system.  The height of the image was noticeably different as well. I got my reference recording speaker set up disc and tweaked placement and i was ready to listen. I would say that I was somewhat conflicted.  I don't think my brain and thousands of hours of listening processed what I was hearing as quickly as other changes I have made. 

While I was thinking I was missing some midrange bloom I also noticed a bite on the horns section that I had never heard before.  Listening to Holly Cole's Temptation album and in particular, Little Boy Blue, I was captured by the bite of the horns. I was transported in the studio when it was being recorded.  I knew in the back of my mind that the SET was rolled off and I had been missing the upper frequencies.  Tommy's amp is billed at reproducing up to 100K.   The Cherries had so much air and space between the notes it was treat to appreciate it.  I heard no evidence of any unnaturalness in the higher frequencies.  Just cymbals and triangles that are clean and fully extended.  No concern with any sibilance with Female voices.  I recently downloaded Diana Krall's "Turn up the Quiet" at 24/192K.  Want a treat? Listen to the tracks "Sway" and the next track "No Moon At All".  The combination of acoustic guitars, bass, & strings coupled with Krall's sultry voice shows off what these amps do best.  The space around the guitar, the plucking and tone of the double bass, the presence of Diana's breathing and singing highlights her phrasing and her magic. When the strings come in, the goose bumps appear and my attention was captured waiting for the next note.  I shifted and began listening to a Male Voice. An older, simple but beautiful song from Neil Diamond- Stones. Guitars and percussion were right on and his baritone voice never better.

Janis Ian - "Breaking Silence" was next and this is one of the better recordings I have in my collection.  Beautifullly crafted songs with outstanding musicians- this collection of songs are so well recorded.  I can't say I have ever heard a pop/rock album with dynamics this impressive. If you haven't heard it, you haven't heard what your system is capable of. Supertramp: Crime of the Century, Pink Floyd ?  Its right up there.  I talked to Janis's office and ordered a couple CD's and had Janis sign one of the copies. Just 16/44 ripped files and the recording is so good, you would think its the master tapes.  The Cherrie's with it dynamic capabilities are the perfect match. I have heard this CD with so many fantastic amps and speakers- I can't say that I heave heard it any better than last night.

After listening for four straight hours and throughly enjoying every minute of it, my appreciate goes out to Tommy and the Digital Amplifier Company for an amazing product especially at its price point. I have never heard an amp this good for anything close to this price.  It has it all!

As important is that Tommy is about as nice as you can find as an owner and customer service is outstanding.

Special thanks to Wind Chaser for butting in!!

I just received the DAC DAC and should be hooking it up tonight to see what it has in store.  The Exogal is a very strong DAC and is very musical.

I'll provide the comparison feedback later this week.


Wind Chaser

Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #155 on: 25 Feb 2018, 11:18 pm »
I'm glad that worked out.  :thumb:

So so do you still feel like you need a sub?


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Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #156 on: 25 Feb 2018, 11:47 pm »
Hey Windchaser...
Actually I did get the sub. While the bass was greatly improved
The 13” SVS sub with a 1,000+ w class d took it to another level
with no overhang.

Thank you again!


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Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #157 on: 6 Mar 2018, 09:28 am »
Reviewing the Digital Amplifier Company’s MEGAschino Cherry Amp March 5, 2018

The top-end is the best I have heard from a Class D amp so far. It is nicely textured and extended, but compared to my reference Pass 30.8, there is an ever so slight amount of homogenization in the upper octaves, but it is ever so slight.The top-end is nicely detailed, and it has no glare or edginess. The truth is that it is quite beautiful.

The other thing I would say about the MEGAschino is that it has great attack and definition in the midrange without sounding aggressive or the least bit “transitory.” It sounds smooth throughout its frequency range, and it also seems more tonally accurate than other Class D amps. For that matter, it also sounds better than most transistor amps. Vocals were played with an incredibly clear window on the performance, and instruments seemed to be right there in the room with me. Vocals also had good body and weight.

It has a bit of the bloom in the midrange that I most often associate with single-ended Triode tube amps. It also lets you hear the layering of the music like SET amps. Now don’t get me wrong, the MEGAschino will never be mistaken for a SET tube amp, but it does give you just a touch of their magic but with much more power. I was rather surprised by this...

Stereo MEGAschino:   $6,100
MONO MEGAschino:   $9,800/pr or $5,000


Desktop Maraschino REVIEW
« Reply #158 on: 18 Mar 2018, 12:06 pm »
"After 35 years, I have the system that I always dreamt about.  Note I have the spatial M3 Turbos S's'...."


Note the number of listeners converting from tubes to Maraschino is no the rise!

Thanks for checking it out.



Re: Maraschino and MEGAschino REVIEWS
« Reply #159 on: 18 Mar 2018, 12:25 pm »
Jeremy Kipnis will be reviewing the MEGAschino....  Stay tuned....

Here's an article from about a year ago "From the Kipnis Studios (KSS): The View From The Top - An Interview with Tommy O’Brien of Digital Amplifier Company":