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Crutchfield

Peachtree iDecco

Stereo integrated amplifier with built-in digital-to-analog converter and "Pure Digital" iPod dock

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  • Peachtree iDecco

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  • Peachtree iDecco

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Item# 731IDECBG
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Peachtree iDecco

by Jim Richardson
Peachtree Audio

Everything you always wanted in a stereo receiver, except the radio

An integrated amplifier is essentially a receiver without a built-in AM/FM tuner. You get power to drive your speakers, audio controls, and inputs for music source components. Connect an iPod, a computer, a network music player, or any other device that can play Internet radio, and you may find you have no need for an AM/FM radio.

High-end sound that's Made for iPod®

Refreshingly uncomplicated and sonically magnificent, the iDecco proves beyond a doubt that hi-fi and iPod belong in the same sentence.

Peachtree Audio, an official Apple® Partner, is the first audio company sanctioned by Apple to take the digital bitstream from your iPod and feed it directly into an integrated amp's high-end digital-to-analog converter. The iDecco's built-in dock, unlike most outboard docks, bypasses the iPod's built-in DAC and analog output, which are OK for earbuds, but less than ideal for home audio. Instead, the signal goes directly to the acclaimed ESS Sabre DAC, which reduces jitter (distortion caused by digital timing errors) and upsamples the signal to 24-bit/96kHz resolution.

Tube hybrid design takes the harsh edge off of compressed digital music

From the sophisticated DAC, your music travels through a class A tube-buffered preamp to a high-current 40 watt-per-channel amplifier. Connect a good set of speakers, and the sound quality you get from your iPod can be as good as it gets from most any CD player. The signal-to-noise ratio is an astounding 118 dB. Expect the same great results when you hook up your computer or other digital source through the USB or digital audio inputs.

The iDecco also has component video output, so you can easily use your docked iPod to watch movies, TV shows and video podcasts on your flat panel TV or PC monitor.

Highlights:

  • 40 watts x 2 channels into 6 ohms at 0.1% THD
  • built-in Pure Digital iPod dock bypasses iPod's DAC (and its analog audio output circuitry) for better sound
  • hybrid vacuum tube/solid-state design
  • vacuum tube preamp stage (uses a single dual-triode input tube)
  • high-current class A/B solid state power amp
  • built-in ESS Sabre digital-to-analog converter (DAC) with selectable wide/narrow jitter reduction and upsampling
  • DAC filter slope switch let you choose a fast slope that "measures" better on a test bench or a slow slope that sounds better to some listeners.
  • decodes MP3, AAC, WMA, FLAC, AIFF, WAV, PCM, and Apple Lossless
  • high-capacity toroidal power transformer
  • digital audio inputs: 1 USB (Type B), 1 optical (Toslink), and 1 coaxial (S/PDIF)
  • 1 pair RCA analog audio inputs
  • 2 pair RCA audio preamp outputs for connecting a powered subwoofer or outboard power amplifier
  • headphone output (full-size 1/4" jack)
  • heavy-duty binding-post speaker connectors
  • detachable power cord
  • spare 6H23N vacuum tube included
  • remote control
  • 14-7/8"W x 5-1/16"H x 14-1/2"D
  • weight: 26 lbs.
  • warranty: 1 year on amp, 6 months on tube
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
 

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
General
Watts RMS per Channel (8-ohms)
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---
Watts RMS per Channel (6-ohms)
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40
Watts RMS per Channel (4-ohms)
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---
Frequency Bandwidth
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N/A
THD
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0.1%
Minimum Impedance
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4 ohms
Signal to Noise Ratio
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Not Given
Number of Inputs
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5
Phono Inputs
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No
Preamp Outputs
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Stereo
Width (inches)
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14-7/8
Height (inches)
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5-1/16
Depth (inches)
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14-7/16
Weight (pounds)
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25
Parts Warranty
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1 Yr (6 months on tube)
Labor Warranty
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1 Yr (6 months on tube)
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • 2-Channel hybrid tube integrated amplifier
  • 6.5' AC power cord
  • IR wireless remote control
  • 2 AA batteries
  • 4 iPod Dock insert adapters (touch/ 3rd generation nano/ 160 GB classic/ 80 and 120 GB classic)
  • Owner's Manual
  • Note about the remote

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features

Overview: The Peachtree Audio iDecco is an audiophile-grade 40 watt x two-channel hybrid integrated amplifier with a built-in iPod dock. The preamp's Class-A tube buffer tames harsh compressed digital music and allows exceptional reproduction when listening to high resolution files. The high-current amplifier section then powers your speakers. In addition to the internal amplifier, the preamp also feeds the preamp output (for use with an outboard amp or powered subwoofer), the fixed line output (for using the iDecco as a stand-alone DAC), and the Class-A tube headphone section.

DAC (Digital to Analog Converter): The iDecco includes the ESS 9006 Sabre DAC, a mutli-layer board with over 450 components and 11 regulated power supplies. The ESS Sabre DAC's patented jitter reduction circuit re-clocks the digital signal before passing it through a high-resolution 24/96 upsampling processor, perfect for computers, iPods, and most streaming or hard-drive based music servers because they typically have high levels of jitter (digital timing error between the source and the DAC). Each digital input is transformer-coupled so noise associated with ground loops and switching power supplies from computers is eliminated.

iPod Dock: Most iPod docks have analog outputs, forcing you to use the iPod's internal power supply, DAC and output section. The iDecco uses the iPod's digital output, fed directly into the ESS Sabre DAC, improving on the iPod's sound quality. As long as the iDecco's power is on, the iPod battery charges and its video is output through the component video outputs, even when listening to a different source. The iPod is controlled using its own buttons and these models and features are compatible:

iPod/iPhone Model Generation Media Type Control Display Charge
Audio Video Unit iPod Song/Artist Track
dock-connector 3rd N N N N N N N
click-wheel/color-display 4th N N N N N N N
mini 1st N N N N N N N
2nd N N N N N N N
video 5th N N N N N N N
classic (80/120/160 GB) 80GB Y Y N Y N N Y
120GB Y Y N Y N N Y
160GB Y Y N Y N N Y
nano 1st N N N N N N N
2nd N N N N N N N
3rd Y Y N Y N N Y
4th Y Y N Y N N Y
5th Y Y N Y N N Y
touch 1st Y Y N Y N N Y
2nd Y Y N Y N N Y
3rd Y Y N Y N N Y
iPhone 2G N N N N N N N
3G N N N N N N N
3GS N N N N N N N

Note: Apple firmware updates may change functionality results.

USB Connection: Using the iDecco, you can take pure digital audio signals from iTunes, Windows Media Player, Front Row, or any other music management system on your computer before it goes through a sound card. Just connect USB cable between your computer and the iDecco's USB type-B port; no sound card is required.

Controls: The iDecco has the following controls (input voltage, filter slope, and jitter bandwidth are on the rear-panel):

  • Power: on/standby
  • Input Selectors: five discrete input buttons; USB/Coaxial/Optical/iPod/Aux
  • Volume: rotary volume control; the knob is motorized and turns when you adjust the volume using the remote control
  • Filter Slope: the slope of the DAC's digital filter is switchable; fast/slow
  • Jitter Bandwidth: digital jitter reduction bandwidth; wide/narrow
  • Voltage Switch: the input voltage is switchable for international use; 115V/230V

Remote Control: An easy to use IR remote control is included with the iDecco; it offers the same functions as the front-panel controls, plus adds mute, tube (the tube button toggles between solid state and tube-hybrid operation of the preamp), and iPod transport functions (play/pause, skip forward, and skip backward). The remote control IR sensor is located in the center of the iDecco's front-panel.

Note: There are also menu, up, and down buttons on the remote that have no function at this time.

Connections: The Peachtree Audio iDecco features the following connections:

  • iPod Dock: top mounted iPod dock
  • Aux: analog stereo RCA inputs
  • Optical Digital Input: Toslink input
  • Coaxial Digital Input: single RCA input
  • USB Input: USB type-B port; takes digital audio content from your computer and sends it to the internal DAC
  • Pre-Out: stereo RCA preamp-outputs allow you to use an external amplifier or a powered subwoofer
  • Fixed Line Output: the Class A fixed line output (stereo RCA) allows you to use the iDecco as a stand alone DAC
  • Speaker Terminals: left and right binding-post speaker terminals; will accept spade, single banana, or pin connectors and bare wire up to 8-gauge
  • Component Video Output: iPod video output; only active when playing iPod video files, does not output iPod menu, album art, or music text
  • Remote in/out: 3.5mm remote input and output jacks
  • AC Input: three-prong detachable power cord is included
  • Headphone Output: front-panel, 1/4" headphone output; the speakers are muted when headphones are plugged in

Tube Window: The iDecco features a tube window, allowing you to view the glow of the unit's tube. The blue LED under the tube is lit when the preamp is in tube-hybrid mode.

 
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Peachtree iDecco Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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5 out of 5

As Close to Perfect as you can get for the price

Written By MJL, Ocala, FL on Saturday, January 29, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Let me be brief: if you need a 40WPC integrated ampflifier look no further. If you need an excellent headphone amp along with the integrated amp look no further. If you need a digital IPOD dock built it to the unit look no further. This unit sounds gorgeous, simple as that. Its tubed sound is sweet and natural. It is beautiful to look at.

Buy it.
1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

iDecco Delivers

Written By SalD, Higganum, CT on Thursday, November 04, 2010
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I read good reviews about this product in magazines and online and now that I'm using it I concur. I was given a set of decent outdoor speakers this summer and was looking for that one box solution to feed them for those summer parties. Dock the iPod and set a good playlist on shuffle and let the good tunes roll. Now it's in my studio (guitar lessons, recording with GarageBand, etc.) powering a set of older JBLs. Nowadays my students bring the tunes they want to learn on their iPod, iTouch, etc. so again the dock is great. Love the tubed headphone amp and versatile input output options on the back panel. Most of my iTunes library is not MP3 but lossless (AIFF) format so I can really hear the difference with the iPod playing through the Sabre DAC.
5 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Peachtree iDecco

Written By Ryan, Royersford, PA on Friday, April 23, 2010
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This is a phenomenal product and good bang for the buck. In one package, you get a headphone amplifier, digital-analog-converter, tube preamp, solid state amplifier and a dedicated iPod dock that similarly to the Wadia transport sends a pure binary signal into the iDecco, bypassing the cheap DAC in the iPod. Each of these internal components is superb. Using my MBP as an input via USB to play Apple Lossless music through the iDecco into my Polk RM7500 sub/sats the iDecco made the satellites sound amazing with only 40 watts of power. My least favorite of the components was the headphone amplifier. Perhaps my headphones are not good enough to benefit from having a headphone amp, but I was slightly disappointed with the unnoticeable difference. Also when using the headphones, the volume knob needs to be turned at least halfway to get decent volume. If you are not driving speakers that require HUGE amounts of power, this is a nice alternative to a rack full of individual components. If you require a bit more power, step up to the Nova model. It loses the iPod dock, but doubles the power output. And if you really need the iPod dock, consider the Wadia i170 transport. The build quality is fantastic. It is surprisingly heavy and solid.
11 out of 13 people found this helpful
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