Onyx Amplifiers Silver Spring MD
Silver Spring, MD
Home Audio, Design & Installation
Home Audio, Design & Installation
Audio / Video, Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Multi-Room Audio
Sonance, Triad, James Speakers, Revel, Boston Acoustics, Linn, Crestron, AMX, Universal Remotes, Lutron, LiteTouch, CinemaTech, Stewart, Runco, Sony, LG, Pioneer, Samsung, Panasonic, Chief, Omnimount, Middle Atlantic, Denon, Integra, Yamaha
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- Alex Beelke, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Cameron Bolling, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Anthony Elhard, CEDIA Certified Professional EST III (Advanced EST), CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Peter Elliott, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- James Finnerty, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Timothy Hatfield, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- James McWilliams, CEDIA Certified Pr
College Park, MD
as reviewed by Francisco Duran
I was recently speaking to a friend in the high-end audio business, and when I mentioned that I was listening to the Wyetech Onyx monoblock amplifiers, he commented that I was lucky to get a chance to hear them. His point was well taken. Wyetech components are not exactly distributed on the scale of Yamaha or Sony. Although a detailed description of the design and construction of the piece of equipment under consideration seems to be the pattern for most reviews, I will be brief. The build quality of the Onyx amplifiers, inside and out, is excellent. The lavender paint and gold trim is both beautiful and unique. I am sure that many people would like to see alternatives to the silver, black, or blinding chrome that so many manufacturers employ. The Onyx amplifiers have several design features that should appeal to tube amplifier lovers. Each output tube is self-biasing. Output impedances of 2, 4, 8, and 12 ohms can be selected via a sturdy switch located on top of the amplifier. There is a time-delayed power switch that is meant to provide proper sequencing for stabilizing the circuitry, and to extend tube life. The length of the signal path on the in-house-designed PC board is said to be less than six inches. You can argue until the next millennium about whether PCBs or hard wiring are more reliable or sound better, but I could not care less. I only care if a component sounds good and doesn't break down. I do like the self-biasing feature, though.
At first I was concerned that the Onyxs' 13 watts would have a hard time driving my Dali Euphonia MS-4s. but they had no problem. In fact, these amplifiers rocked, and rocked hard! While the Onyxs might be low in measurable output, they sound anything but small. For a time, I pressed my much more efficient Cain & Cain Abbey speakers into service with the Onyx amplifiers. They handled the Abbeys with ease, but the Euphonias were a better musical match.
The Onyxs' most notable traits were their superb micro- and macro-dynamics and their transient response. These amplifiers had a surprising grip and authority with every CD I played. From The Buena Vista Social Club's Orlando "Cachaito" Lopez to jazz bassist Steve Rodby, they reproduced acoustic bass with strength, fullness, resonance, and agility. Depending upon the recording, throw in spaciousness and depth. Slam and impact was not hindered with the Dalis. Classical pieces like Hovhaness' Mysterious Mountain (Telarc) sounded large and open, and did not break up at very loud levels. Bass sounded solid and controlled. More often than not, solid-state bass is tight and stiff, and does not sound natural. Bass through the Onyx monoblocks sounded full, weighty, and real, and it blended very smoothly with the rest of the frequency spectrum. I kept shaking my head at how 13 watts could handle—no, make that manh...