Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 high end sztereó erősítő teszt

Dán nagyvas

2021. február 12., péntek, 12:05

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Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 integrated stereo amplifier review

Danish Iron

Danish high-end manufacturer Gryphon Audio is a globally acclaimed company among audiophiles. Since its inception in 1985, the company produced a number of legendary products, like its first very own integrated amp the Gryphon Head Amp. Founder Fleming E. Rasmussen was greatly inspired by the overwhelming success of the Head Amp; therefore, he devoted all his time and energy to further refine and develop Gryphon products. As a result, the company became one of the most revered high-end companies globally. In today’s review, we will examine the Diablo 120 integrated amp, which is considered one of the best AB class amplifiers available today.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő


The Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 is eager to emphasize its own significance even before unpacking. The size and weight of the boxed amp might surprise even more seasoned audiophiles with its 31+ kilograms weight.

After unboxing our feelings are all positive but mixed: the Diablo 120 is incredibly robust and monolithic, while extremely fastidious with its thick metal cover, huge heat sinks, all in shiny black colour.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

The front is characterized mostly by a large TFT display, which turns out to be a touchscreen: almost all features and functions can be controlled through its surface. The upper third of the front includes a sizeably heatsink, hence providing somewhat of an industrial feel to the device. The main switch is located on the left side, attached to the bottom cover, being the only physical switch or button on the Diablo 120. Nevertheless, standby mode can be switched using the touchscreen, hence there’s no need to frequently use the main switch. Furthermore, all characteristics of the device can be adjusted using the 1menu’ function on the touchscreen, which is a really fancy, yet sometimes a little bit cumbersome solution – we loved it anyway.

Turning around the Diablo 120, we feasted our eyes on the quality plugs and other elements. Just as the whole device, all these items seem to be impervious to any physical damage we can think of - yet we never tested this quality for understandable reasons.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő hátlap

The Diablo 120 implements a dual mono amp design, enabling perfect channel separation, especially when used with dual mono sources. Speaking of sources, the backplate includes a sizeable bay for a DAC expansion board, while another expansion board - phono board - can be installed internally. (Installation shall always be done by authorized dealers or distributors) Phono connections are already included on the backplate with ‘RIAA’ labels for both sides. Yet these connectors come alive as phono inputs only when the internal phono board is installed.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő hátlap

5 pairs of RCAs and one pair XLR plugs are available, divided between the two sides of the dual mono amp; these connections are satisfying for basically any reasonable need in the given category. Speaker connectors only allow the usage of banana plugs in single wire design, yet both these plugs are robust and of the highest quality even by the looks. 12V trigger and DC out connections are also available.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő hátlap

As of power and performance, the Diablo 120 offers - surprise - 120 Watts per channel at 8 Ohms impedance, however, this value expands to a whopping 440 Watts at 2 Ohms. Frequency range is extreme, as it covers the 0,1 Hz-250 kHz range which is far beyond the boundaries of normal human hearing (yet it might result in richer sound compared to amps with lower frequency ranges) while output impedance is most impressive at 0,027 Ohm.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő phono modul

The interior of the Diablo 120 is equally exceptional: a huge toroid transformer sits in the middle, surrounded by a symmetrical layout of components for each channel. Internal cables are as short as ever possible, while all components comply with military standards, hence offering long time problem-free usage and ultimate durability. All components are attached to a 70 microns thick circuit board. It is worth mentioning, that after rectification power is stabilized and filtered by 2x60 000 mF capacitors to achieve the possible best power supply.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

Testing environment, musical pieces

We reviewed the Diablo 120 in the following environment:

Power supply: Torus TOT MAX isolating transformer, AudioQuest and Gryphon power chords

Digital source: Naim NDX 2 streamer

Cables: Nordost Heimdall 2 (USB, RCA és loudspeaker cables), Gryphon power cable

Speakers: PMC Fact.8

We listened to the following pieces of music with the Diablo 120Wintersun - When Time Fades Away, Jean Michel Jarre - Equinoxe Infinity, Mike Oldfield - Return to Ommadawn, Shota Osabe - Happy coat, Vivaldi – The four seasons, Handel – Water music, Haydn - Trumpet Concertos (DSD), Yes - The Steven Wilson remixes.

This selection allowed for listening to a variety of styles to examine with the Diablo 120. Also, we find different challenging characteristics in each musical piece, making it possible to decide whether the Diablo 120 is choosy or more universal. As always, we warmed up and conditioned the whole system before the listening session.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

Listening session

Since we have already had a number of listening sessions with the system mentioned above - with different amplifiers from the same category of course - we were most interested in experiencing the changes to be implied by the Diablo 120. Our first impression was that the PMC speakers and the Diablo 120 make a great match, maybe better than with any amp we have listened to it with. Of course the Diablo 120 emphasized all the great features and characteristics of the PMC speakers: sizeable soundstage, excellent bass - with overwhelming control - and a generally calm and precise sound with many details and musicality. It is important to note that despite its ability to show all the nice details of music, the Diablo 120 never fall into the trap of being sterile or overly analytic. The resolution and microdynamics also gave us a chill - and a huge smile on our faces - during the listening session.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

The Wintersun track - although not being the most audiophile recording we have ever heard – includes lots of instrument tracks, as the composer said, there are around 2-300 simultaneous tracks to be heard during the culmination of this song. The Diablo 120 presented all the phrases in the most elegant, tasteful and natural way we can imagine. We also realized that the tremendous power of the Diablo 120 exceeds our needs very, very far - music was flying from our speakers with such ease and grace that we were wondering what kind of speaker might even be challenging for the Diablo 120. We experienced this piece of music like never before, making us fight ourselves to move on to the next track instead of listening to it again and again.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

Return to Ommadawn - besides being one of our favourite Mike Oldfield albums - showed us how natural, and "analogue" can the Diablo 120 be, when challenged with acoustic music. Of course, dynamics were excellent, and we literally heard all touches on the strings, the small cracks of the acoustic guitar's neck, the left-hand movements over the neck - this level of realism surprised even our seasoned ears. We have experienced the feeling of a "non-existing" system as everything sounded so natural that we could imagine Mr. Oldfield playing right in front of us.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő

The electronic style composition of Jean Michel Jarre is one of our favourites both musically and from a sonic standpoint. This music really squeezed out all the bass our speakers could provide, while also showing a far larger soundstage than any previous albums listened. The Diablo 120 managed to perfectly control the bass while keeping it tender and roomy at the same time. At the same time, synth sounds remained fluid and incredibly clean without overdoing the mid and high ranges. Actually, it was the refinement that impressed us most in case of this record, but we believed there's more and switched to classical music in DSD format.

We were right: classical music - especially orchestral pieces added one more dimension to what we have heard so far. Never before heard nuances and dynamics unfolded on a soundstage more precise and just bigger than what we thought possible. Again, everything sounded so natural and fluid that with closed eyes, we actually saw the musicians playing in front of us. The Diablo 120 presented all these without ever becoming overly analytic or unnatural; we still hear the fluidity of violins in our ears.

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő kijelző

In conclusion

In case of the Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 we found it completely obsolete to examine the "basic" audiophile features of the amp, as at this level, everything must be perfect: bass, dynamics, clean mid and high range and so on. We must say that the Diablo 120 is better than perfect in all these aspects, but it also adds incredibly refinement, space and fluidity to the music. Of course, this amp tends to be choosy in terms of source quality: streaming media is no option of course, while PCM being the first acceptable format and in the digital realm, DSD is the ultimate ruler. It would have been really nice to listen to the Diablo 120 with vinyl recordings, nevertheless we were far more than satisfied listening to quality digital sources. We could listen to the Diablo 120 forever, as all our favourite musical pieces showed at least one more dimension with it, not to mention the otherworldly ease of driving our speakers which made listening a very relaxing and calming experience. The richness of the sound we heard is most probably the result of the extremely wide frequency range, however, data and other details are indifferent in the case of this amp: it is pure joy without compromise or white spots. Our only painful issue was the fact that we had to give it back to the dealership...


Output power: 2x120 W/8 Ohm, 2x240 W/4 Ohm, 2x440 W/2 Ohm
Build: dual mono
Inputs: XLR, 5 x RCA
Frequency-response: 0,1 Hz-250 kHz
Input inpedance: 50 kOhm (20 Hz-20 kHz)
Options: DAC and Phono board
Size: 48 x 17,5 x 42 cm
Weight: 27 kg
Price: 11 300 EUR



Stream Audio Kft.



1142 Budapest, Szatmár str. 54/b


Excellent character, composed, balanced tone

Perfect overall sound, beautiful microdynamics

Feeling of endless power reserve

Serious performance, oversized components

Dual mono topology

Fastidious, timeless look

Metallic remote control


Sound quality:  
Build quality:  
Value for money:  

Gryphon Audio Diablo 120 sztereó erősítő


További cikkek:


Zsóka Krisztián

telefon: +36-30-2272035


Future Life Kft.
Future Life Kft.

3535 Miskolc, Fényesvölgyi u. 16. 1/3.



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