I somehow got attracted with a promo info that I have received from
Tommy some moths ago. I was looking for a class D amp for me. After a closer look
at his amps and some email exchange with him, I got a feeling that he is lovely
involved in his production and I felt that his words were real and convincing.
Then I thought, perhaps, a Cherry amp could be a good choice for me.
Also motivated by the promo, I have
ordered a few Cherry products including Desktop Stereo Integrated Maraschino
(STM). I did not know what I could expect from such a compact and light amp, but was
indeed curious to check how it sounds (and there was a trial period). Besides the
promo price, this amp had some obvious attractive features for me: it is small,
light, energy efficient and integrated, and if one does not have many sources, it
could potentially be a perfect choice. I looked for this amp for my second studio
system with Thiel bookshelf speakers, and I need just two inputs, one
for streaming from my laptop while I am working (I use iFi Zen DAC) and the other
for my CD player/transport (the front input of STM is very useful so that you have
actually two inputs).
So what about the sound? In my case, it took some months this amp to sound at
its best. I am deeply involved with it and love how it sounds. Not only
the sound is very clean and detailed but the soundstage and dynamics are
also good, I would say that the soundstage is indeed good for a solid stage amp
especially. I am perfectly satisfied with the sweet attractive overall performance
of this amp with my bookshelve speakers. However, as it turned out, STM drives also
easily large non-sensible speakers (Thiel CS6 in my case). The soundstage and
dynamics though are not as good as with my bookshelve speakers so despite that STM
has enough power to drive large speakers, I think it gives its best with bookshelve
ones. In the same system, with my Krell CD player/transport I also use Cherry DAC TL
DAC with also nice results. This DAC gives clean, soft reproduction. (In fact, I did
an A-B comparison of this DAC with a more expensive PS Audio Gain Cell DAC, which
is also a preamplifier with a considerable number of inputs and features. As
to the sound reproduction, the Cherry DAC gives a little bit more open and clean sound).