In talking with Kung, it became apparent that he has a crazy travel schedule as he plies his fully-built and kit – DIY – Japanese-built, tube-hybrid amplifiers, CD players, DACs and speakers all over the world at hi-fi trade shows. He’s full of energy and just a genuinely nice guy. I kept seeing him constantly as I marched from the “Tower” to my hotel room, the restaurant, the bar, and pretty much anywhere I went because he was set up in the lobby at the Marriott for RMAF. And I always looked at his gear that was practically pouring off of several tables because there was just so much of it. But a sweet little Elekit hybrid tube stereo amplifier (tu:tu:) kept grabbing my eye because I had seen a mock-up of the design years ago and always thought it attractive in a very modern/Danish/Japanese kind of way.
I only had a chance to listen to a little Elekit PCL86/14GW8-based tube amplifier running through tiny speakers that Kung kept raising to ear level to demonstrate how deep their soundstage went… and I was floored at how good this strange little set-up sounded. I could definitely see this being an end-game system for a desktop or laptop-based computer audio system with a decent DAC.
I’m hardly an expert in computer audio, but I know what I like for sound, and this little kit had all the tube goodness going for it that I love – only smaller – and certainly doesn’t break the bank with many of the items I saw running around $200~$350 USD. If you’re in the market for something small ‘n sweet, look up VK Music.