I’d like to think of Zanden Audio as the Japanese VAC and VAC as the American Zanden Audio at least in so far as the uniqueness of their designs and their common dedication to preserving the musical signal.
Zanden currently makes two distinct series of components: the classic line and the modern line.
The classic line represents Zanden performance at its best starting with the 1200 III phono stage which is considered by many to be one of if not the finest all around phono stage preamps in the world. The 1200 III has phono inputs for both low impedance and high impedance cartridges.
A unique feature of the Zanden phono stage is it’s numerous equalization curve positions which are designed to complement The different recording equalizations used by such companies as Teldec, EMI, Columbia and Decca.
Extremely simple in appearance the 3000 II is truly one of the world’s great preamplifiers.
A significant improvement over the original Model 3000 , the 3000 II employs Amorphous cobalt core transformer at the inputs and mu-metal core transformer is employed at the outputs. The amplification stage is constructed using Zanden's unique no negative feedback circuit. Absolute phase can be inverted, and a full function remote control is included.
The result is a little like straight wire plus game with a little sweetness added.
The 3100 is a remarkable preamplifier in its own right. Using a slightly simplified version of the 3000II classic line stage circuit The 3100 produces A truly musical presentation with clean detailed and dynamic sound . Employing transformers in the output section only , 3100 nevertheless maintains the use of tube rectification which is more than a little unusual in its price range.
One of the great mono block class A 845 amplifiers, the model 9600 operates in purely balanced mode employing KR 845 vacuum tubes which allows it to generate 60 W of class a power and up to 100 W of class a B power. The musical results or simply such stunning.
8120 originally saw light as the power section of the model 6000 integrated amplifier. Once the far superior preamp stage of the 3100 was introduced Zanden made the decision to offer it as a power amplifier. Using KT120 output tubes the model 8120 is remarkably fast and laid on its feet for a tube amp not quite as warm as we usually expect but brilliantly transparent in every sense of the word.
The only solid-state component which Zanden makes is it’s model 120 phono preamp . The 120 has two inputs either of which can be designated as high or low impedance. It continues the tradition of offering multiple phono equalization curves as in the 3002. While not as luxurious as it’s big brother the model 120, it is and exceptional performer in its own right.