I'm relieved that the issue is resolved, undertowogt1! You will not be disappointed in what you hear.
TL;DR: This amplifier is incredible... IF your speakers are not insanely hard to drive. If you've been debating, do it now.
I've traveled quite a bit in my audio journey, and practically all of it has been in the same apartment. I've had a Parasound A21, Simaudio i5.3, Vinnie Rossi LIO, and Devialet 400 among solid state equipment (a handful of tube gear here and there), paired over the years with Zu Superfly, Harbeth C7, Martin Logan Vantage, and finally tired of the constant chase, a locally made pair of speakers using Focal drivers which are basically illiquid.
I'd bought Jeremy's boards (DIY7297 + Antipole) a while ago, but never got around to ordering the parts because life got in the way, and the Devialet combination was working so well. Still there were some quirks, and I always thought that I could eliminate those with a raspberry pi. So I finally bit the bullet and ordered the standard BOM from Mouser, a DAC from the good guys at Allo, a chassis off of Amazon and connectors and wire from around the web. I expected assembly to take the whole weekend, but put it all together in four hours! The chassis was being a bit troublesome but finally hooked it all up, got Spotify Connect working and... sound!
And not just sound - a sound that got me close enough to the Devialets to make me sell them.
Here are the characteristics that stand out the most:
* Impeccable control on the sub-100 Hz range
* I'm not sure if I'm using this correctly, but the 'dynamic range' is fantastic. Its ability to deliver a bass punch to the gut and simultaneously rustling leaves in your ears is pretty neat.
* The background is black as ink. Though, when I get closer there's a mild 120 Hz hum that I need to trace down.
* The soundstage was wide when I used the standard Kemet + Vishay caps in the input stage. When I replaced those with Jantzen Superior, it became W I D E. The Jantzen took about 3-4 days to break in.
* Micro details/voice texture could be more pronounced, but then again, the entire source is <$150, so that's likely the bottleneck
This weekend I took the amp to my friend's place who also has a Devialet 400, but with a pair of Magico Q1 (4~5 Ohms, 86 dB/w/m). Listening to it at medium volume (baby was sleeping), we couldn't hear any bass from 5-6 ft away. Swapped back to the Devialet and more music seemed to emanate at the same listening level. My speakers are supposedly 91 db/w/m sensitive, and simply rock at all volumes.
The boards are really thoughtfully laid out and their quality is fantastic. As you can see, Jeremy is enthusiastic about helping and teaching. Super kudos to him. This is a wonderful and simple opportunity for one to create something of beauty *and* value.
Thankfully he had a few more boards remaining from the last run and I managed to get another 2x DIY7297 + Antipole boards from him. I'm considering a dual mono design. I really have no reason to do so apart from curiosity. Does anyone have thoughts on how to approach bridging? I have 3 pairs of binding posts on each speaker (2 in the bookshelf, 1 in the LFE), if that affects the direction.