In particular I am looking at the JDS Labs Atom and the iFI iCan SE. The iCan outputs a tremendous amount of power, 4 times that of the Atom, enough to drive speakers; But does so less cleanly, at-least according to their self-published numbers. Meanwhile the Atom has a measured noise floor of below -120db (according to audiosciencereview forum) and is incredibly clean and "transparent" for it's price, almost as good as other amps which are 10x more expensive.
Now, the iCan takes 15v DC current at stock (tho it can also take down to 9v) and the Atom takes 16v AC.
Does the difference in working current topology have something to do with the difference in noise levels? Is AC current fundamentally better as a working current when it comes to amplifying audio signal?
I remember Zeos Pantera saying as much during one of his reviews, but then-again he's also fundamentally opposed to actually understanding the science behind audio so as not to "ruin the magic" ...so I take his words with a rather large grain of salt.
Me on the other hand, I love nothing more than to learn new things, so please share your knowledge :)