Van Alstine Fet Valve Ultra 550 Amplifier Amplifiers

Van Alstine Fet Valve Ultra 550 Amplifier Amplifiers 


2 channel hybrid power amplifier. 250 watts per channel 20 to 20 kHz at less than 0.01% THD. 17" wide, 13" deep, 7" high. Shipping weight 42 pounds.


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[Feb 11, 2008]
Audio Enthusiast


This is a very powerful, very quiet, very musical amplifier. It has a purity of sound that really has to be heard to be appreciated from the first watt to the last. It is almost unsettling that this amplifier can sound so utterly musical at very low volumes and maintain that musicality at sound levels that will make any thinking person abandon the room post haste. The build quality is mil-spec in nature. The phrase "built like a tank" comes to mind and is entirely correct in its usage to describe what Van Alstine turns out of his shop in Minnesota. What Van Alstine has achieved with this hybrid blending of tubes and MOSFETS is quite remarkable to listen to. The sound is never harsh, strident, or in any way unpleasant. This is an amp that can be listened to for hours upon hours and you will not be fatigued.


Some people care more about looks than sound. They will likely go elsewhere. When I said Van Alstine equipment was built like a tank, it is built like a tank. The exterior case front is brushed black aluminum with an AVA logo and an illuminated red rocker switch to cut the power on and off. That's it. No laser engraving, no CNC cut face plate that weighs 10 pounds, no "built for" labels on the back, no IEC connector for the $1,000 power cord set. This is a straight up amplifier, bells and whistles need not apply.

As with any electronics that have tubes in them, it takes this unit about 20 to 30 minutes to get up to temperature, so if you cut it on from a cold start, don't expect for it to dazzle you in the first seconds.

This is a review of Mr Van Alstine's latest iteration of his hybrid design power amplifier. Frank currently makes 2 models: the Fet Valve Ultra 550 rated at 250 watts per side, and the Fet Valve Ultra 350, rated at 160 watts per channel. Both models are stable down to 2 ohm loads and are true high current designs. This particular review is on the larger of two amplifiers.

*NOTE: This amplifier was made in 2007, but the editing software will not allow anything newer than 2006 to be chosen.

Customer Service

If you call, it is highly likely that Frank Van Alstine will answer the phone.
30 day trial period.
3 year warranty, transferable from original buyer to the next owner.

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