What a fine d/a converter we say out loud to no one in particular. We’ve heard Burr Brown dacs before but here what stands out most is the refinement that is gets pretty close to our Sonnet Morpheus. This dac is smooth, radiates tranquility and is quite insightful. We can’t imagine anyone attaching a separate dac to this device. For some listeners, the dac may come across as a little too well behaved but with prolonged listening, this is an asset. We don’t miss a beat and relax immediately. The Atoll dac sounds a little brighter than our own Nos dac but don’t see this as a negative. On the contrary. The balance is just fine. Lots of resolving power, speed and plenty of detail. Well done! As a preamplifier, the ST300 does not disappoint either. Wide dispersion, depth in the soundstage and fine imaging. These all-in-one devices have become very good we again shout out to no one in particular. Streaming via Roon sounds excellent. Every aspect of this streamer is perfectly balanced, giving us a very complete picture. The combination with the Bryston is truly excellent. Better than with the Atoll AM300 Signature, which in our opinion emphasizes the soft character of the streamer a little too much. So it is important to find a suitable power amplifier for this streamer so that it fully comes into its own. That the Bryston is a better match shouldn’t be a surprise. It costs more than three times as much as the Atoll AM300.
We briefly had the Atoll AM300 in the set and found it to be especially high value. The brothers Dubreuil need to make a living and need to be able to pay their staff but apparently that can be done without charging absurdly high prices. The AM300 Signature is dual mono design and uses excellent components. Two hefty ring transformers, six mosfets per channel and symmetrical output stages via a proprietary stabilization system. You get a whopping 150 watts in Class A/B of which the first are in Class A. You can also switch them to mono should you desire even more power but that seems unlikely to us. The AM300 clearly has the Atoll house sound. Laid-back, round, generous but with enough liveliness. The AM300 has a friendly character and emphasizes almost nothing so it will perform well in multiple situations. The low is a bit rounder than strictly neutral but that’s about it.