roksponsmallNo one could ever accuse Kostas Metaxas of creating something “boring”. Yet again, this eccentric artist has presented us with his unique take on a very utilitarian subject, the headphone amplifier. Combining a historic art oeuvre – “memento mori”, contemporary sculpture and technology, his latest Marquis “Memento mori” is a minimalist Preamplifier-Headphone amplifier designed, says Kostas, “for music-loving audiophiles who require few functions but insist on the purest sound”.

Kostas goes on to explain further, “Memento mori means “remember that you must die” in the language of Latin. For men living in antiquity all the way up until the beginning of the 20th century, death was seen as a motivator to live a good, meaningful, and virtuous life. It served to remind us of our own mortality, of our mistakes and failures and of the shortness and fragility of human life.

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Memento mori “objects of art” compel us to meditate on the meaning of life. Many of the obstacles we face in our lives are rather like the waves of the sea: relentless, bleak, repetitive and, ultimately, not responsive to our wishes or longings. In the midst of our struggles, we can still appreciate the immense beauty and grandeur of life. I take every opportunity to infuse art into everyday objects. When I looked at what was being offered on the market, I couldn’t believe that you only had a choice between unimaginative small boxes and oversized “tube” amplifiers pretending to be headphone amplifiers. Life is too short to listen to and enjoy expensive headphones through a boring, musically uninvolving and ugly headphone amplifier!”

The Marquis borrows from over 25 years of concert recording experience with serious headphone monitoring. Like all Metaxas & Sins amplifiers, the CNC-machined “head block” can be finished in a choice of 10 aluminium colours, or automotive painted.As well as a dedicated headphone amplifier and headphone stand, the Marquis also can be used as a preamplifier with a choice of 3 line-level inputs (RCA connectors) and a set of RCA outputs to connect to a power amplifier to drive a pair of speakers. The solid CNC-machined base encloses the power supply to keep all stray RFI and noise from the delicate low-level signal stages, but also can be offered with optional “battery-pack” so that you can use the Marquis for over 5 hours before needing a recharge.

Specifications

FREQUENCY RESPONSE : DC – 5.0MHz (-3dB) 

VOLTAGE OUTPUT: 15VRMS per channel into 50 Ohms with no more than 0.05% T.H.D.

SLEW RATE : Greater than 1000V/us small and large signal

T.H.D. : Less than 0.05% 20Hz-20KHz

I.M.D.(S.M.P.T.E.) : Less than 0.05%

SIGNAL/NOISE : -117DBV unweighed input shorted

SENSITIVITY: 26dB

INPUT IMPEDANCE : 100kOhms

 

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