Devilishly Tasmanian? A 2016 article in Australian Hifi announced Anthony's $29'000/pr mirror-imaged Ex Nihilo mono amps. Those rated at a stupendous 275w/8Ω and were good for a continuous 900w/2Ω. Previewing today's cosmetics, this direct-coupled class A/B design used a hulking 2.5kVA toroidal mains toroid, 225'000μF of capacitance from two banks of 48 x low-SRL filter capacitors, 12 x 250-watt lateral Mosfets and a 120A solid-state output protection relay. "The input driver stage has its own electronically regulated power supply to provide extreme electrical isolation from the high-current output stage pulses. The two electronic regulators feeding the input driver stages have their own dedicated and isolated secondary winding and bridge-rectifier filter bank, providing a well-regulated and isolated power supply for the best possible sound quality." The article concluded by calling the design the result of 20 years of uninterrupted R&D into hifi electronics and the first in a line of no-compromise models.

Ex Nihilo is Latin for 'from nothing' although Launceston in Tasmania will only be metaphorically nothing to that rest of the world which, understandably, is unfamiliar with the interior of this 68'401km² island state.

It sits 240km to the south of the Australian mainland and enjoys the nickname island of inspiration. Consider how Cataract Gorge is just a 2-min. drive from central Launceston. Doesn't it makes NYC's Central Park seem rather flat and boring by comparison?

Clearly Ex Nihilo was the very-much-something pater familias from which our Pieridae butterfly called Anteos descended. Granted, it's a rather massive butterfly and more than a stretch—I simply couldn't find another meaning for Anteos the word—but certainly far less so than a pair of 70kg mono benders. For this range, Holton had started at the very top, then 'trickled' down to Anteos then Inviso. Like Ex Nihilo, Anteos again operates in more efficient class A/B to make more power from a smaller lighter chassis than the class A Inviso.

"If you want to know where you're going, you need to know where you're from."

If that saying holds true, we now have at least a rough notion of where Anteos is going: to uncompromising customers all over the globe who can make do with just 150 watts into 8Ω. Cough.

Ex Nihilo guts without power transformer.

In casa Westport on Ireland's rural west coast, possibly even more remote than Launceston, the closest living relatives to Anteos just then were Ivo Linnenberg's €8'500/pr Liszt monos from Germany.

How closely related? They're 200 watts, also DC-coupled, also balanced, also class A/B, also of wide bandwidth and also use lateral Mosfets from Exicon. That means the same general design pool. Putting roughly comparable specs into a single chassis and doing so for €1'600 less started me off on a highly expectant note. And yes, it'd also be my first-ever Tassie review subject and red amplifier in nearly 20 years of writing on fine hifi.

Transformer secondaries wired up.

Good thing our many neighbors weren't bulls but bleeting sheep.

Removing the stout bottom cover revealed immaculate physical packaging which, one imagines, took expert mechanical engineering. A central divider separates the bottom signal path circuitry from the massive toroidal transformer whose chromed cowl remains visible inside the top plate.