Linear Tube Audio at Axpona

I would love to hear from folks who had a chance to check out the Linear Tube Audio gear at the show (Teajay?)? I'm very interested in the new ultra linear amp which got good advance notice here at Audiogon, and the preamp which seems a refinement of the microzotl.
Me too, currently have the ZOTL10 with the upgraded linear PS.  I think I’m more curious about the preamp though as the 10 Watts is plenty for me currently. 
Me too, currently have the ZOTL10 with the upgraded linear PS.  I think I’m more curious about the preamp though as the 10 Watts is plenty for me currently. 
Hey Paul,

All the LTA have new beautifully done chassis.  The new model of the Micro-ZOTL preamp will sell for around 4K and is just a linestage with many more inputs/outputs and upgraded boards and power supply.  Mark will be sending me one for review.

I'm on the LTA distribution list so I got the email and then checked out the website. The new preamp looks nice. It's now a preamp that can double as a headphone app, before it was a headphone amp that could double as a preamp. Hope to hear from somebody who got to hear one of their rooms.
@teajay , I will be very interested in your review since you’ve spent time with the Micro ZOTL. The MZ2 is the best preamp I’ve owned and I have no doubt the new preamp will be better but by how much? Oh who am I kidding. I know I’m buying it.
I live in DC and bought the Ultralinear amp after working with Mark on the prototype. It is wonderful and much better than my previous Z10. I am hoping to get a test of the preamp in my house within the next few days. I am pretty sure I will end up selling my MicroZotl v2.

Great stuff. Great company.
How would you describe the differences or improvement in the ultra-linear compared to the Z10?
The new Ultralinear is a home run, sensational transparency along with the LTA characteristics of tone, timbre/color, and soundstage!
OK, After a visit to LTA today I left with a preproduction MicroZOTL Preamp. I only have a few days before I have to return it but After only a few minutes I can say it clearly superior to my MZ2. This is killing me. Now I’m going have to buy one.

I just received this week a pair of Decware HR-1 speakers.  I am considering purchasing either a Decware amp like the TorIll Jr or Torll Mk4.  I am also considering  a ZOTL10.  I own the MZ2 and love that amp.  Lancelock, I saw from a previous post when I did a search that you are familiar with amplifiers from both of these companies-would appreciate if you could compare the sound from these two companies
            In what ways did you find the new preamp superior? I also have the MZ2 currently.

I have a pair of Decware ERRx radial speakers and I was surprised at how loud the one watt of the MZ2 would go. If you haven’t tried it then power the HR-1s with the MZ2 just to hear what it can do. The quality of the sound is amazing.

I have extensive experience with both Decware and LTA amps. I have owned the Tori 3 and the flagship ZMA. Once I plugged in the ZOTL40 I had to sell the ZMA. The big difference was transformer haze. There was huge veil lifted with the LTA gear.

I have tried 3 different LTA amps with the ERRx speakers and all 3 bested the sound of the Decware amps. I’m not saying Decware amps are bad at all but I much prefer the ZOTL sound.

MicroZOTL Preamp vs MZ2

The same house sound just more of it.

The new preamp has a wider, more clearly defined sound stage and more sparkle at the top. The bass is just a bit more real sounding. There is smoothness, a little smoother without losing dynamics. I can’t explain this but could the MZ2 have been a little grainy sounding?

The piano is sounding more real than ever. There is more clarity in the sense of having more space in between notes or just less noise? Not that I could ever detect any audible noise before with the MZ2 but the background is darker. I guess more real sounding, more in the venue feel.

So the flavor is the same just more of it and the best description I could use is refined, more refined. I think Mark has optimized this circuit design as far as it will go and the more I listen the more I like it. I have to return this one but I will be buying one.


Lance, thank you for your detailed report on the new preamp. When will it start shipping?
Thanks Lance for your comments on the sound differences between the ZOTL and Decware amps-much appreciated-by the way I hooked up the MZ2 to the HR-1 speakers and was shocked at how well the MZ2 drove those speakers-not only was the volume sufficient for my listening levels, but it was done with no distortion at all with great imaging, detail, and clarity to the sound

I have a Decware Mini Torii 2 amp with Omega Super 3S ( single RS5 driver ) speakers
I am definitely intrigued by the ZOTL concept and the positive comments I have read on the net.

I wonder how my Super 3S speakers would match up with a ZOTL amp.
Would these speakers be able to convey the high resolution of the ZOTL amp accurately etc or would these speakers be outmatched ?

I would be happy to read any thoughts and comments you guys might have on this matter.


Bob, I have not heard those speakers so I can’t comment on sound but at 93db even the 1 watt MZ2 would work in a small room. Because my 93db ERRx will go pretty loud with the MZ2 direct. Most likely the ZOTL10 would be best. Mark does have a 30 day trial policy.
Hi lancelock

Thanks for your response. My speakers are 94db and as I am looking at the ZOTL 10 I would think it will go loud enough to suit my needs. My concern is
would they fully resolve what the ZOTL has to offer.

However as you alluded to the best way to find out might be to try the ZOTL in my system in my room with my ears.

Anybody know if the MZ2 will drive Audio Note E/SPe He speakers directly?  I have ordered some, and they won't be here for a few months, so i have time to upgrade, if necessary.  Thanks,

@doni, I’m guessing there’s no one on this forum with that combination of amp and speakers. Your Audio Note being efficient will play fairly loud is my guess, not rocking the house loud though. If you have a smallish room it just might work well. The MZ2’s 1 watt of class A makes my 93 db radials sing into the 80 db levels before clipping. You will not have much headroom though.
@lancelock , thanks for your input.  I have other options, so will try it and see how it sounds.  Seems like AN speakers go best with AN amps, so that may be the ultimate direction.
@doni, LTA has a generous trial offer. So you can try it out for 30 days and shipping is minimal because the unit weighs next to nothing.
@doni  I encourage you to take advantage of LTA's trial offer. The only way to know is to get it in your system. All the best.
Guys, I already have the MZ2, and love it, that's why I'm wondering if it can drive the AN speakers.  It's currently using it to drive a Pass XA30.8 and Vandersteen Treo CT's.
@doni  My point, and I think Lance's as well, is to consider slightly more power by adding one of their amps after the MZ2. 1 W, though sufficient for some music and at some volumes, etc. will leave you wanting in many ways. Their 10 or 40 watt options make more sense or the new Ultralinear amp. You can trial any, and then compare to the MZ2 (as both pre and amp). The other option is to continue using it with the Pass XA-30.8 (which I have by the way).