The Tron Telstar 211 is named after the famous communications satellite "Telstar", as well as the 211(VT4-C) tube being a famous communications tube. Amplification is achieved by a 6C45 single triode driving the 211/VT4-C output valve. Graham describes the 211 valve as behaving like a racehorse “The 211 valve has an enormous heart and can provide surges of power and dynamic contrast like almost no other, however it can easily be abused and the result is more of a workhorse than thoroughbred. I have worked very hard to capture the best from the valve in a way that allows it to breathe and run free; ensuring the loading is not equivalent to a cart for a racehorse.”
The choice of components in the circuit was also critical to ensure that the dynamic tension in the music was not lost or encumbered; Graham remarks “with such a powerful valve the temptation is to get it to do all the work unaided.” The power output we obtain is deliberately lower than we know is possible, and this is really to ensure that there is headroom for the dynamic changes that make the right music piece so dramatic and captivating. It produces a conservative 12 watts of power and is completely free of any feedback, which allows the circuit to remain both agile and simple.
The 211/VT4-C is transformer coupled to the loudspeaker by a specially made output transformer. The power supply is a valve design and is connected to a pi filter making a very smooth and quiet experience. Measured hum on the output is so low that it is completely inaudible even on loudspeakers of 110dB efficiency (Avantgarde Trio Omegas). Custom made components are used throughout Telstar and these are hard wired between stages, which is labour intensive but allows for the most efficient signal path. The 211 valve is a very special valve, we believe you will understand why the moment you hear the Telstar.