Mola Mola is not the largest company making amplifiers, but it is a company with a large brain behind its operation. That’s because it’s the brainchild of Bruno Putzeys, an audio engineer with extensive experience working for Philips in Belgium – where he developed various digitally and analogue controlled class D amplifiers, noise shapers and modulation methods, and also invented the UcD class D circuit. Since leaving Philips however, Bruno has dabbled with a number of new technologies and a culmination of all that work is his latest firm, Mola Mola.
Having signed distributors deals with distributors in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Iberia, France, Monaco, Benelux, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Taiwan, India and China – Mola Mola is adding yet another country to that list. That’s because the company has signed a distribution deal with Sound Design Distribution Ltd – which distributes brands such as Punk, Geneva and The+Audio.
With Mola Mola, Sound Design Distribution Ltd is set to expand its portfolio with a range of amplifiers – including the Makua Control Amplifier and the Kaluga Monoblock power amplifiers.
The Makua is a fully balanced, transparent gain stage and routing matrix, accommodating optional DAC and phono stage modules and programmable via a dedicated App through USB or Bluetooth to access any combination of channel, processing and routing.
Via the phono stage option, vinyl-lovers can connect up to five turntables and program the settings individually for each. All five inputs are switchable between XLR and floating RCA connections, and all can be assigned as either phono or line.
All stages in the Makua employ discrete amplifier modules using a topology called ‘single-ended driven differential’, which prevents noise from propagating all the way through to the outputs (paralleled for bi-amping). The relay-based volume control directly controls the gain of the output stage.
Mola Mola says that the dynamic range and linearity of this arrangement are much greater than those of stepped attenuators, ensuring operation is smooth and entirely glitch free.
In terms of specs, the Makua boasts:
- 5 balanced and 5 unbalanced inputs, all routable through optional processor boards like the phono stage and DAC
- 2 parallel outputs for bi-amping
- 4 programmable trigger outputs
- Distortion at maximum signal level (THD, IMD): negligible – estimated around -150dB
- Bandwidth >200 kHz
- Dimensions: 420mm(W) x 110mm (H) x 345mm (D). Depth includes volume knob and connectors
- Weight: 11kg
Based on Bruno Putzeys’ Ncore technology the Kaluga amplifier promises low distortion, noise and output impedance.
The circuit is a Mola-Mola optimised design derived from the Hypex NC1200 amplifier, featuring an audiophile layout of short, isolated signal paths and eliminating board-to-board connectors in favour of star-quad cables soldered directly to the circuit board; this is said to achieve the cleanest, lowest impedance connection possible.
The input stage on a separate circuit board uses the same discrete buffers as those found in the Makua pre-amplifier. The redesigned output filter uses monolithic capacitors with dielectric stability.
In terms of specs, the Kaluga boasts:
- Output power: 400 W/8 ohm; 700W/4 ohm; 1200W/2 ohm
- Unweighted Signal/Noise Ratio: 128 dB
- Distortion (THD, IMD): <0.003 % (all frequencies and power levels)
- Bandwidth: >50 kHz
- Balanced and unbalanced input
- 2 pairs of Furutech binding posts, bi-wired directly to the amplifier PCB using Kubala·Sosna cable
- Dimensions: 200mm (W) x 110mm (H) x 335mm (D). Depth includes speaker terminals
- Weight: 7kg