Golden Gate, our former flagship, was the most successful of all our products. It reigned for 3 years as the top choice of critical audiophiles around the world. Since it was superceded by the Pacific, it still has cult following. And tens of great reviews. We decided not to discontinue it but instead - trickle down as much technology as is feasible from the Pacific and make Golden Gate a very solid performer for less money than the Pacific. And that's how Golden Gate 2 was born.
Since late 2022 we ship GG3 with following improvements versus the GG2: New, completely redesigned digital engine called ENGINE ELEVEN, a trickle down from Horizon DAC, that change makes a big improvement in natural presentation, liquidity and resolution of bass.
The tube rolling paradise feature - heater switch that in turn allows for using circa 7 DHT tube types, like 300B, PX-4, PX-25, 101D, 45, 242 and the like. Also with mechanical adapter of the socket we can use KR-T-100 gigantic triodes. We also use new USB firmware, better DSD engine, from September 2022 512x DSD as standard.
What we kept - is the gorgeous copper chassis, new but old looking Lampi front, and a flight case to protect this baby during travel.
All in all - Golden Gate 3 has obvious Lampizator pedigree, while being much better DAC than its predecessor - in every area we can name.
It is all very well looking pretty, but musical performance is what this DAC focuses on. The first facet that any new user will recognise upon inserting a Golden Gate into their system regardless of choice of speakers
or electronics is an enveloping and enormous 3-dimensional soundstage that projects forwards and backwards beyond room boundaries at a level that is state of the art. I have heard many top flight DACs and none will create this experience.
Let's address the Elephant in the Room first; Lukasz of LampizatOr has made a believer of me! Yes, tubes are there. But they are doing what they are supposed to be doing and nothing they shouldn't. This DAC is a window to the music, no coloration or flavor. Low frequency extension is ridiculous. Tight, clean, and bottomless. The Marianus trench of DACs and it is vacuum tubed too!!!! The noise floor (other than the transformer hum previously mentioned) was remarkably low and allowed music to bubble up from the silent depths.
Enjoy The Music Award winning review from Matthew Clott
DISCRETE RESISTOR LADDER VOLUME CONTROL
GOLD PLATED PCBs
SILVER/GOLD SOLDER USED