The origins of Esoteric’ s new S1 Stereo Power Amplifier lie in an unbounded respect for the deep emotive powers of music.
The Grandioso lineage that gave birth to the M1 Monoblock Amplifier now unveils a new standard bearer. Following in the footsteps of our M1 flagship, the new S1 benefits from its knowledge and technology, allowing it to continue in the pursuit of true perfection. Experience majestic symphonies and infinite silence as sound and spirit call to each other. The very existence of the device between them seems to fade into oblivion, no longer noticed by the listener. Without doubt, the new Esoteric S1 Stereo Amplifier defines the true spirit of fine audio, and the realization of the ultimate in musical enjoyment.

Music Overflowing With Energy — A Sense of Space That Only High Power

Can Achieve That moment when the sound from your loudspeakers seems to make the  audio system disappear before your  very  eyes  is one  of the  most exhilarating moments of  the  listening experience. That  indescribable sense of spaciousness, the feeling that the music you’re hearing is truly live, can  only be generated by an amplifier that  offers an abundance of power in order to properly drive the loudspeakers. Employing the finest components, and massive power supplies, enables Esoteric’s amplifiers to achieve that high power output. As our new flagship stereo power amplifier, the  S1 faithfully  incorporates the design philosophy of our Monoblock M1, setting free every nuance of sound, and imparting to music all the vibrancy and richness of life.

600W into  2Q Power Linearity for  Outstanding Dynamics

A  loudspeaker’s impedance can  vary  widely depending on  the  fre- quencies being reproduced.  Continuous low  bass and  repeated fast transients from percussive instruments can  impose a very  demanding load on the amplifier that can require not only continuous high power outputs, but  also repeated bursts of high  power.  Unless the amplifier’s power supply has  the  capacity to meet these stringent demands and do so consistently, the dynamics of the music will be compromised.

The  finest  materials and  component parts have been used in the construction of the S1’s  power supply.  This  enables the S1, which  is nominally rated at 150  watts into 8 ohms, to deliver an  impressive 600 watts into 2 ohms. This is a testament to the linearity  of the S1’s power supply, and permits the full spectrum of sound dynamics to be faithfully reproduced at all volume levels.

Large-Capacity Custom Power Transformer — The  Heart of the  Finest Power Amplifiers

As one  of the most important factors in deciding an amplifier’s ultimate sound quality, the S1’s robust power supply plays a critical role in its abil- ity  to deliver high power in a linear manner. The power supply’s large 2,180VA toroidal transformer provides the  foundation for  the  S1’s exceptional power output. With the knowledge that an amplifier’s sound quality is ultimately determined by  the quality of its power transformer, the  S1 employs a custom power transformer that  demonstrates Esoteric’s highly developed expertise in material selection, core size and even mounting technique. To preserve the purity of the sound, separate windings are used for the left and right channels, and the transformer is securely mounted on a rigid, 5mm-thick steel base plate.

The transformer is  not fitted with a  cover in  order to avoid any degradation in  sound quality,  however slight,  that  this  might cause. Three parallel rows of capacitors totaling 4,700wF per channel shorten charge and discharge times, and provide a tighter and faster sound. The power supply wiring employs heavy-duty cable, and to reduce impedances to the  lowest level possible, rather than  use  conventional connectors, joints are made using crimp terminals that are tightly bolted together.

Breathtaking Speaker-Driving Power Worthy of a Flagship Stereo Amplifier

An  amplifier drives the loudspeakers by  converting the musical information into an electric current. While  this may  sound simple, considering that the output current ranges from very small to very large, it is nearly  impossible to accurately drive  the loudspeakers in a way that is consistently faithful  to the source musical signal.

In order to optimize the amplifier’s ability to drive the loudspeakers, ways had to be found to reduce the amplifier’s output impedance to an absolute minimum. To achieve this, Esoteric’s full range of expertise was devoted to the S1. A total of nine bus bars are used across the design, and   the   need for  an  output coil  has   been  eliminated. In  addition, exhaustive efforts have been made to  simplify  the  circuit design and widen its range. The result is the achievement of the phenomenal DF (damping factor) of  1,000,  which can  be  considered a  guideline for woofer drive capability. Even large-diameter woofers, which are notoriously difficult to drive, are provided with accurate damping, and the sound is precisely reproduced with an expansive feel across a wide range that reaches to even the lowest frequencies.

Balanced Input Stage Configuration Enables High Clarity Signal Amplification

In the design of the S1, careful attention has also been given to noise reduction. Each channel’s audio input  signal  enters through discrete balanced input  buffer amplifiers, and is then relayed to the amplification stage  by    way  of  a   low-impedance   signal  path.  By    eliminating common-mode  noise and   making the  signal   path resistant to  the effects of noise,  signal  clarity  is accurately maintained through to  the amplification stage, thereby achieving an extremely high signal-to-noise ratio for an exceptional listening experience.

The outstanding dynamic range made possible by the amplification of a clean, noise-free signal promises the listener a level of excitement that transcends mere numerical specifications. The S1 not only delivers the full dynamic expression of a high-powered amplifier, it also provides the fine sensitivity needed to reproduce the more nuanced gradations
that exist between musical crescendos and silence.