MEET HUGH DEAN
Hugh was born the eldest son of a South Australian farmer in 1951, and educated at boarding school in Adelaide, the State capital. His mother trained as a doctor, but never practised; she is highly literate and has published books. His father was an intensely technical and driven man, and founded a company some years ago which still manufactures and sells windmills around Australia.
Hugh inherits this fascination with all things technical, and loves technical writing. He entered University in the late sixties, but failed to complete an Engineering degree because of problems with the Math. This salutary lesson in life taught him that math models are wonderful tools, but deep technological insights are essential.
He joined the Australian Army as a conscript soldier in 1972 just as Australia disengaged itself from the Vietnam conflict. He resumed his education in the Army, converting to teaching, eventually taking a degree in Education, with majors in Science and English Literature. He was appointed to Officer rank in 1976, and served as an academic, eventually reaching the rank of Major and finishing his time as an IT Project Officer computerising 33 Defence Pharmacies across Australia.
Looking back, he feels the Army helped him in three important areas; a good education, a clear understanding of people, and a solid financial background. Hugh married Sri, an Indonesian lady from the Women's Army Officer Corps in Jakarta, in 1983, and they have two daughters, Soraya, 23 and Alessandra, 20. Presently Soraya is living and working in London, while Alessandra is completing a Fashion Design degree at RMIT, a large University in Melbourne.
Hugh retired from the Army in 1993 at age 43, soon finished a Masters degree in Business Information Technology, and began work part time in 1994 with an IT consulting company in Melbourne as their Research Consultant. During his seven years in the IT industry, Hugh was thus able to indulge his great passion, hifi research, whilst still supporting his family on a modest income.
These were exciting and fulfilling years, and he first developed the Glass Harmony hybrid amplifier, which uses a tube front end and a single ended mosfet output stage to produce 28W rms. A second amplifier, the Lifeforce I, was a conventional SS amplifier with a triode wholely integrated into the amplifier to improve sonics, but was eventually superseded by an all solid state amplifier sold as fully built modules. Only the Lifeforce II and Soraya made it to commercial life, but the evolution of the ancestors taught valuable lessons!
The AKSA was developed in the period December 2000 to February 2002, and fully exploits the knowledge gained with the Glass Harmony and the Lifeforce. The Lifeforce was developed in 2006, while the Soraya, the flagship, was developed in 2007 in readiness for the Rocky Mountain Audio Festival in Denver. Hugh's family have always been truly supportive of his hifi addiction, and graciously tolerate his late night tests, interminable prototyping and heavy development costs.....
During the eighties, Hugh suffered a health crisis, but recovered and is now fine. However, it left a lasting impression, and convinced him that one must leave something behind. It is rare to find passion in life; in case anyone wants to know, this is the source of his love of audio. Hugh's hobbies include listening to music, reading biographies and Science Fiction, fixing and tweaking automobiles, and cafe society, which he loves - as Melbourne AKSAphiles will attest!
Hugh wants to build the simplest, best hifi amplifier at the lowest cost in the world. And he believes that even if he were deaf, he'd still design amplifiers.....!