Pathos Acoustics was founded in 1994 by three Italian pioneers: Gaetano Zanini, Gianni Borinato and Paolo Andriolo, in the Italian city of Vicenza. A sophisticated city in northern Italy, famous for its great monuments designed by architect Andrea Palladio. The tradition of making something outstanding has continued since the days of Palladio.
Today the focus in the area is on metal production, jewellery and fashion. This city still promotes innovation and invention just as it was used to at the time of Palladio. Pathos combines past, present and future, making hi-fi jewellery small monuments. Highly technological, and with designs and sound that leave no doubt – these products offers something absolutely unique.
Pathos story started in 1994 by a “coincidence”. Gianni Borinato had an idea of a new amplifier circuit and he asked his two friends Paolo Andriolo and Gaetano Zanini to help him exploring the opportunities of this technology. So they manufactured the very first prototype; as Gaetano owned a high-end shop in Vicenza, they had the best possibilities for testing and benchmarking.
At first the three pioneers thought that the amplifier they used as reference was broken – but the fact of the matter was the new circuit provided outstanding sonic performances, straight from the very first prototype.
Doubts were first instilled, but this amplifier was too good not to be produced. In other words, Pathos was born in order to develop and to spread a new amplification circuit called InPoL (Inseguitore a Pompa Lineare = Linear Pump Tracker). InPoL is Pathos property and the circuit holds a Worldwide Patent.
Design and production
Paolo, who has a passion for industrial design, started to create the look. The result ended up as the T.T. – hailed by many to be the most beautiful amplifier ever produced. One of the few hi-fi classics of its time – a living legend. Gaetano started up the production, making no compromises on components and materials.
Along with the technical innovation, the design and high finish of the products are very important as well. Through the years the idea “uglier they look and better they sound” has been pretty common within the audio business. Pathos proved they were all wrong. Pathos products speak to many of our senses – anyone can appreciate them every day.
Just a look at a Pathos product is enough to make the customer feel, that he/she purchased something exclusive. Sometimes it is better to listen with your eyes open. All Pathos products are hand made in Vicenza (Italy) by following a long tradition of Italian craftsmanship. Only the finest selected components are used to ensure a peerless quality; all products are taken through a careful test-program to guarantee their quality. Unique products deserve unique treatment.
A new opportunity for the market
The Pathos company was born, but it was not an easy release, considering the market in which it was going to work. The audio branch is notoriously known by the presence of thousands of brands, it is a small and hard business.
But for sure there was – and there is – enough space for a brand offering innovative solutions and extraordinary designs. The hi-fi industry needed somebody who dared to follow “the unorthodox approach”. Pathos was therefore founded in the knowledge, that there is enough space for those who have something authentically new to introduce, in that exciting search for the maximum fidelity in the reproduction of music.
InPoL, tecnology patented
The early theory influencing the whole InPoL project comes out to avoid any kind of general “output-input” back-feedback. It is claimed that, despite a fine developed back-feedback implies important benefits, it is considered always something “artificial”, which influences the sonic outcome and causes a loss of naturalness and “spikiness”.
A good project not including the use of back-feedback implies – on the other hand – a higher rate of conversion and a slightly poorer damping factor, to put up with naturalness and harmony of the actual signal.
InPoL was born from this design theory: developing a power stage without any back-feedback, featuring a limited distortion, and a satisfactory damping factor. For this purpose it has been used a single solid-state component in follower configuration, with hypothetical voltage gain = 1 and with high current gain. Polarization is in pure Class A to avoid crossover distortions, typical of Class AB stages.
Only solid-state NPNs are used, which are totally different from PNP ones; this difference could only be solved by back feedback. InPoL makes use of a big inducer as energy supply, which is driven by a transistor as a “controlled current generator”. In so doing the theoretical efficiency is doubled – from 25% to 50% – and low impedance is achieved, necessary to get a correct damping factor.
InPoL features an amplification factor of 1 when current is provided, so it “copies” the signal received from the input, without changing the harmonic content and keeping the signal naturalness unchanged.
The only task of InPoL is therefore supplying the necessary current for driving the loudspeakers perfectly. InPoL is a worldwide patent.
A new philosophy
The philosophy that accompanies Pathos brand, the unorthodox approach, effectively created the benchmark of the business philosophy. The Pathos approach to the reproduction of music does not know dogmas or rules, but the goal is clear: to reproduce music in the most authentic way.
Making products similar or equal to those already existing on the market does not fit to Pathos philosophy: every unit planned and manufactured by Pathos must enclose technological innovation, (not innovation as technical exercise!) but something able to offer real advantages for the fulfilment of the early aim: “faithful reproduction of music”.
Present and future
At the moment Pathos is known and appreciated worldwide – as a manufacturer of high quality amplifiers. These products have received several international awards and positive feedbacks from the press. Headquarters have been changed twice within the last ten years, in order to follow the increasing demand. There has been a steady growth and the product range has been extended. Pathos is in the middle of a heavy development, which is bringing several new products. The INPOL circuit has “evolved” and still nobody has come up with a better approach to amplifiers manufacture. INPOL-circuit is made to convey the sound in the best possible way.
Pathos factory is five times bigger than before. This allows us separating our work: one department is specialised in woodworking, another one in metal processing and so on. And the laboratory will be even bigger, as Pathos will focus more and more on technological innovations in the future. Thanks to the new projects “the unorthodox approach” will keep on amazing both ears and eyes. It is all about passion.