Atom and external amplifier

A little background…. I have the Atom, the speakers are Klipsch Heritage with 99db efficiency. My problem is I am getting tweeter hiss…a 2 or 3 watt tube amp will drive them…can I hook-up a tube amp to the Atom this bypassing the Atom amp completely and just use it as a dac streamer?

I guess you could, but you might find that the pre out from the Atom is noisy.

Give it go?

With such sensitive speakers you might find a quieter amplifier to your advantage.

1 Like

@Silverfoxvtx1800 You won’t be able to bypass Atom’s amplification, unfortunately:( i have the same setup and find it a bit “noisy” but i’d still say Atom as a streamer does a great job.

You can’t bypass the Atom preamp, but you can bypass its power amp. A pair of RCA preamp output sockets is provided for this purpose.

So I should get the benefit of the tube amp and get rid of the noise to my tweeter and other benefits too?
The Atom basically will be a preamp at this point…

It’s certainly possible to try, and perhaps the separate amp will be a better match. It might also help to decouple the Atom from the speakers as it is not the quietest player around, as you might expect given the amount of electronics packed into that little box.

Could give it a try if I fail then get rid of the Atom and start over

My Atom worked brilliantly with a NAP200, so should work with most power amps given the correct cables.

I was thinking about using a tube amp for the external amp, it’s just RCA cables?

When putting the external amp on did you have to do anything in settings or the app?

You don’t need to change any settings, just connect the amp with RCA cables and connect the speaker cables to it.

I also own an Atom, but use it with much less sensitive speakers, where it works fine at reasonable volumes. The Atom internal DAC, preamp, and poweramp all have a relatively high noise floor, and so contribute to the hiss you are getting with the very sensitive speakers you own. I don’t know what the relative contributions are, but I would only replace the power amp if you are thinking of it as the start of an upgrade path of some sort, to a better system overall.

(Keep in mind that tube amps with their significant output impedance can introduce their own problems with respect to speaker performance.)

I am thinking live with it or get rid of the Atom and the Klipsch speakers….