If Oswalds Mill’s latest Special K amplifier evokes Art Deco-era craftsmanship, that’s by design, literally. The Pennsylvania-based audio company has made a name for itself since 2007 by looking backwards to inform the aesthetic of its Hi-Fi products which offer supreme listening quality for today.
Looking like it was used for playback during a studio session of an old radio show, the Special K is actually the newest amplifier in an unbelievably evocative line that includes the push-pull Black Knight, the GM70-integrated, single-ended triode Hollander, and the Metamorphosis rack system, all designed, even required, to be paired with OMA’s similarly design-focused loudspeakers thanks to their adequate sonic purity. Along those same lines, the Special K is the outfit’s most powerful amp yet, with 8 KT88 tubes producing 50W per channel into 8 ohms and a frequency response of -2db points at 10hz and 85Khz.
Perfectly balancing looks and performance, OMA harkens back to the 1930s when vertical amps and triodes were the norms — as opposed to the pentode or tetrode that are commonplace today. The device has four RCA-only inputs and volume control on the front panel and, like all of the company’s amplifiers, the Special K requires no preamp. Other features include full dual-mono construction and custom-wound transformers with amorphous cores and internal wiring. The Hoyt meters are custom made for this amp, which is housed in this beautiful iron, nickel, and lacquered wood case with tempered glass on the front.
At 27in high, 25in wide, and 19in deep, the Special K amplifier is now available through Oswalds Mill Audio distributors. You can learn more at the brand’s website.