Groningen, The Netherlands, March 2012. “A preamp, a DAC and a power amplifier” is the rather business-like opening gambit of Mola-Mola, a new Dutch high-end company. This would ordinarily guarantee exactly no excitement at all in the sty, were it not for the people behind the new name: Bruno Putzeys and Jan-Peter van Amerongen.
Putzeys is probably best known for the UcD and Ncore class D amplifiers and Van Amerongen is the entrepreneur who made these amps ubiquitous under the Hypex brand. They have now got togeher to build audiophile kit which will make its first appearance at the Munich High End show in May 2012.
The Mola-Mola preamplifier is a conventional enough looking unit with five inputs, all of which are, unconventionally, switchable between balanced and unbalanced operation. The gain stage is said to have “completely unmeasurable” distortion, in spite of being potentiometer based.
The DAC’s outstanding feature is a DSP-controlled crystal oscillator which locks instantly to new sources, but whose jitter rejection continually improves until after a few minutes the oscillator essentially runs free.
The mono power amplifiers are, of course, based on Putzeys’ own 1200W Ncore circuit which is rapidly gaining an enviable reputation for itself.
All three Mola-Mola products express Putzeys’ idiosyncratic brand of audio objectivism: “We all accept that bad measurements don’t necessarily mean that an amp or converter sounds unpleasant. But the usual conclusion that good figures therefore don’t mean anything either, is illogical. No serious audiophile is merely looking for a pleasant sound. It has to bring us closer to the original.” This doesn’t quite mean he aligns himself with the sceptical camp though: “By implying that distortion, jitter and other errors only become audible at some impossibly high level, they (the sceptics) have helped stoke the polarisation. That way the tools to make audible errors completely negligible are left unused by either side. By subjectivists because they don’t believe the goal is valid, by sceptics because they don’t believe they’re necessary. I can assure you they are. Every time I’ve heard an amplifier step aside for the music, its measured performance was impeccable.”