The Dayton Audio HTA20BT combines the efficiency and power of solid state class D amplifier topology with the warmth and character of a vacuum tube preamp section. The results are a delightfully articulate and natural sound that is sure to please even the most refined ears.
11 x 8.5 x 6.1 inches
Item model number
The fit & finish is great for the price with an all metal body(the transformer cover is plastic), and the knobs feel great. The main reason I even gave this a look initially was the fact that it has a sub out(most other tube amps are just stereo), and I have an old active subwoofer that I wanted to get some use out of. I paired it with two Dayton Audio B452 airs and a Sony Subwoofer and it sounds wonderful even with the stock Chinese tubes(although I plan to get some different types to try out).
It has two aux in's, a USB port for usb sticks, and bluetooth(connected a computer and record player via BT as a test). Tried them all out, and they work great as one would expect. It also has a headphone jack output on the back for quieter listening sessions at night or when loud music isn't the best thing. Just a great little hybrid tube amp all around. It lacks tone controls, but you could pair one of the tube preamps with tone controls with it just fine through one of the AUX inputs. I would definitely recommend this to others as well. I just wish Dayton Audio would do more branded tube gear like this in the future.
Update 2/2020 I have purchased a tube preamp with tone controls, as I found the top end too bright (as I mentioned previously). Turning down the treble pot on the preamp made all the difference in the world. I am driving Klipsch RP600M speakers (which have a claimed 96db efficiency rating), so I never turn this amp much over half way. It has a good soundstage and separation between instruments and voices. My long range concern is the choice of tubes. They are a rather obscure model and just looking around at replacements I find not many choices. I wanted to try some tube rolling, but it looks like I’ll be buying them from Russia (unless I want to replace them with the same Chinese tubes that are currently in the unit.) Just something to think about...
(Original post): I purchased this tube amp because it has a subwoofer out jack. The sound is excellent until about half way up, when it becomes too bright in the treble range. It listened with both speakers as well as headphones, to make sure it wasn’t just the speakers. The downside to this amp is that there are no tone controls, so I can’t attenuate the treble. I am purchasing a tube preamp with tone controls to see if this will solve the problem. If this doesn’t correct the brightness, sadly I will be returning it. I really want to keep this little amp, as it does really expand the soundstage and really improves vocals.
I am running a ASUS Essence STX in my desktop PC and I've had an old set of Onkyo 5.1 speakers + sub sitting in a box for the last five years with absolutely nothing electronic to connect them together. Could not find a vacuum tube amp with sub output for anything like a reasonable price until I stumbled onto this. It's 2.1 so I still have a center channel and two small rears in the box and I don't even kinda care. The amp fits perfectly on my desk and it has WAY MORE WATTAGE than I will ever use. Sounds great and is an absolutely great value for money.
Oh, and with AUX1&2 available, I am running AUX1 to my PC and AUX2 to a stand alone bluray player. Makes life easy.
I am using this little amp for my desktop speakers (Monitor Audio Bronze 2). I am using an offboard DAC from my computer then into this amp.
1. It sounds REALLY good. I had some old DCM bookshelfs on it and now I have my Monitor bookshelfs running from it and both sound really good. Maybe not as great as a 5k amp.. but this did not cost $5k.
2. It has a very unique look to it that I like on my desk. The blue "Tuby Goodness" glow from the amp is appealing.
3. It has TWO RCA inputs. I looked high and low and other amps for desktops had only 1 RCA and other connectors. I run my Computer in Aux1 and my TurnTable in Aux 2. That combined with the Bluetooth gives me every thing I could need for inputs.
4. It has a sub out. This is a life saver as most bookshelf speakers don't go very low.
on the negative side....
I had to return my first unit as the left channel went out. It started getting scratchy then simply quit working. Amazon replaced it with no questions and I was out an amp for only 1 day.
The new amp is also scratchy on the left side.
Here is a quick tip to solve the left speaker scratchy issue... Lower the volume on your source unit (Computer in my case).. then you can raise the volume on this amp. The extra volume will remove the scratchy POT.
I removed 1 star for the first bad unit and the second unit having a scratchy POT.
But for some reason it distorts any music that is coming into it at low levels, like a piano or just a person’s voice.
When the issue didn’t occur this thing is a beast. The sound quality is amazing!
So after trying two units with the same defect, calling customer support without any good ideas, I’m returning the units.
While testing the second unit I discovered the issue only happens when the two speakers are connected. It won’t happen if I only connected one or if I used headphones.
My speakers are vintage Kilpsch KG 4.2 with new crossovers and tweeters. Sorry to let this thing go. The Rockville BluTube works flawlessly with my speakers but it’s not as hi fi as this one
This is a good little amp for my application of powering studio monitors for a small home music/video studio. I got this because its got just the basics for my use, no bass or treble control, headphone jack, and lower power, i don't need any eq to color the sound, and its just loud enough for mixing, could be a touch louder, but I'm not complaining. Only downfall is that the headphone jack is in the back and when plugged in it cuts the monitors out which is a little bit of a hassle if you want to switch back and forth between speakers and headphones, I would rather it had a speaker selection, on/off switch on the front but for the price overall I'm very happy with it.