I had to face a stark realization today. I f-ed up and there's no one to blame but myself. I made a gamble and I lost. To sum things up, I made a number of design changes. Some things really worked out amazingly, others not so much. The things that worked out pertain to the sound being much nicer, the THD is down to 0.177%, and the frequency response is flat from 10Hz-23KHz with a range that extends out to 65KHz. However, the downside is the noise. At -70dB, that's just unacceptable in my book. Sure, lots of vintage gear is worse than that, but this is a brand new design. -70 is not going to fly. My minimum goal requirement is -90dB RMS with no weighting. That's challenging, but not an insane goal IMO. Problem here is that the things I did with the most recent prototype build are irreversible and will require a complete rebuild from the ground up. The good news is I can salvage most of the components to keep the R&D cost to a minimum. There are, however, some new components and a couple replacement chassis' that put this mistake at ~$300. That's not the end of the world, considering the entire build costs thousands. Lessons have been learned - the hard way. I will not release a product unless I feel it is as perfect as a human can make something.
Many have said before, "There is always room for improvement." As my customer, investor, and now friend, Joe Griffin has said, "It's done when the Artist says its done." I think the later is a better method of thought. It will be done when the noise is acceptable in my book. Aside from that, the sound is absolutely glorious.