Polish "Lampa" meaning the vacuum tube (or a valve) - lampizator is
makes things tubed".
The man, in this context - it's me.
Or a device
converting CD players to "tubed type". In this context - the output
Lampizator is the most talked-about
item in the hi-fi circles after the
rise and fall of SACD ! ;-)
This page is a manifestation of my general disagreement to how the CD
players sound and my own proposal how to make the CD sound fantastic.
Lampizator DIY step by step for beginners
list of over 60 Lampizator
of CD players
DAC giant shootout contest -
the battle of champions
Lampizator - technical explanation
Various types of
Lampizator a safe investment?
CD'P's are suitable for
page of company which followed similar
path. Great minds think alike.
lampizator inside one lampucerized CD host
- list of DAC and transport
The thing of the past - vacuum tube triode - what a paradox - became
the ultimate device of the reproduced music technology.
Didn't we audiophiles hope to have constant quality progress? Always
upward sloping ? Didn't we take for granted that after inferior CD, the
next thing will be much better? DVD-Audio, DSD, SACD ? Just 5 years
ago, who might have
guessed that the good old CD - which everybody was complaining about -
actually turn out to be the PEAK on the quality curve? And
or SACD ? Whatever happened to them? Nothing happened. They did not
happen. Did not go beyond a dream. No software, no recordings, and
above all - MP3 killing that dream. We realized that for 99 % of the
population simplicity and convenience of MP3 overshadows the subtle
So what we have to face gals and guys is that CD is the best media we
will ever have and we have to live with it. Lets re-discover the
good'ol CD player and let's fall in love with it.
Some audio fetishists out there
claim, that CD is inferior to vinyl LP or that SACD is a major step
forward. But I am trying to make a point - your observation is based on
wrong assumption that CD sounds bad because of it's format. (44 kHz/16
Bit) NOT TRUE.
CD format is fantastic but it's full potential has never been fully
realized, even by it's original makers - Sony and Philips.
CD is great. It is here to stay for a while. It is convenient, it can
be easily copied, it is cheap compared to rare SACD
samples and - what you did not know until now - it offers fantastic
sound quality never realized before.
It is obvious, that we have CD collections. Hundreds, or even thousands
of albums for which we paid lots of money. Much too much money.
How is it possible that CD can be so good? ? By coincident, making
endless experiments with CD player tuning, I found out the following:
recording high quality material from vinyl onto CD-R on my cheap
results with FANTASTIC sound, far far better than this from oryginal
CD's of the same music. This lead me to believe that the recording
process in the commercial CD
production messes-up the quality, if my simple recording can be SO MUCH
better. While my vinyl setup easily outperforms CD on very good
pressings, THE CDR COPY is indistinguishable from vinyl direct!!! So
the "digital sound does not need to be bad. And 16/44 is not a
limitation. The limitation lies somewhere else.
The media limited by 44 kHz and 16 bit resolution is NOT the
limiting factor, like the SACD marketing people wanted us to believe to
sell us the same collections AGAIN, paying for them 30 euro per pop
AGAIN. Oh no folks, count me out. SACD, which is surely a
format, brings only very small and questionable improvement, because
the original master
recording is transferred to SACD with same horrible compression. Same
recordings are transferred to more revealing media only resulting with
magnification of bad quality issues.
and I found out B) from the point where the signal leaves the
DAC chip in
analog form, it goes through a jungle of crappy components - op-amps,
filters, electrolytic caps, relays etc. Considering OP-AMP equivalent
schematics - the analog
signal goes through over hundreds of components
before RCA outlets. This seems to deteriorate the sound quality
in a huge way!
My first idea was - what if I use instead of that output stage just ONE
active component - a triode? A super triode ?
I heard before so many great systems which had one thing in common - CD
player was tubed type.
It took me 1 hour to put together a tubed stage and install it in a 200
euro CDP (Kenwood 5090). I connected it to my high-end system, fired up
and --- you
guessed right - the music BLEW ME AWAY. After that I spent four years
with my "lampizator-in-a-box" - installing it by hookup wire in
everything that spins the silver
disc. From cheapest crappy players from the eighties to the real
exotica. And in DAC separates as well. And I tried almost every DAC
chipset in existence - the result
was consistently identical every time:
stage of LAMPIZATOR outperforms every commercial CD no matter
what the price, including other tubed ones. The general broad
conclusion is, that the CD reproduction in every player, from Wadia to
supermarket DVD player - is quite good and similar between spinning
mechanisms, digital receivers, and DACs. What makes the BIG NEGATIVE
DIFFERENCE is the output stage. Apparently - very easy to GET RID
OF entirely by installing the LAMPIZATOR. This mod, without any other
unnecessary popular tuning mods, turns every CD into a high-end
giant-killer. This sound quality- on the store shelf - would cost you
10 000 Euro. I
am not joking - I challenge everybody to try for himself. Don't trust
me at all, because Lukasz told you so. Try for yourself. I challenge
any SACD player at any price to stand against my old cheap philips 630
for 50 Euro or
a marantz 40 or even super crappy Technics 470 with LAMPIZATOR
At that time I owned a super CD, yes, the tubed balanced BAT VK5-D SE
extensive after-market tuning) costing circa 8 000 USD. My lampizator
however beat the BAT with one hand tied behind the back. And to that
day BAT was untouchable, even by Wadia, Mark Levinson, Audionote AN-2,
not to mention the simpler Teacs, Marantzes, Revoxes etc.
(This is Denon CDP with installed balanced mode lampizator (hence 4
tubes) and you can see new RCA sockets at the back plus new XLR sockets
in the top plate.)
This is a test-box lampizator with hook-up wires tapping to the Pioneer
DAC chip and testing the capabilities of this player (PD-S904)
I learned a lot about CD players in the process. What I discovered is
shocking. Few people have seen so many CD player guts as myself. And
believe me - WE ARE BEING CHEATED by the manufacturers. The price point
has almost NO CORRELATION with build quality. I could demystify the top
10 biggest names in the industry and put them to shame. They sell us
mediocrity and cheapness in expensive housing with an expensive
legend attached. And the price tag to match. Prime example is
Marantz, which just added weight to the chassis floor and metal cheeks
but kept virtually UNTOUCHED the simple Philips PCB, all the way from a
50 Euro CD40 to 1000 Euro CD80. (ebay prices)
I DECLARE universal war against high end equipment manufacturers: CD
player, amplifier, cables, speakers - NO MORE CRAP.
mission became my statement, I am a self proclaimed Prometheus -
I steal the truth about good sound and give it back to people.
I devote this web site,
my free time and energy - to help as many people as possible to break
this virtuous circle of never-ending upgrading and spending without
I extend my war against all hifi magazines, which (after I know what I
learned) are the biggest evil. They just reprint the manufacturer's
white papers, full of bullshit - without any criticism. The ads in
these rags keep the editors from writing the slightest criticism. DO
NOT READ THEM. This information only poisons your brain so you can no
longer think. You only need a desire to go and buy BETTER.
My dear reader - remember - NEVER pay more than 500 Euro for any CD
player. Never allow anybody make you change your valuable CD collection
for anything else like SACD on the base of fake promise of better
Before you make any of the above mistakes - PLEASE READ ON and meet the