Chances are if you're under a certain age you've never heard an amplifier powered by vacuum tubes. Tubes--or "valves," as the English say--were power-hungry, hot, delicate and temperamental. But they also offered a warmth that solid state technology couldn't provide.
But transistors and circuit boards are better when it comes to power consumption, reliablity and cost. They won the battle and rightly so. But tube amplification--in stereos and instrument amps--is still revered.
Samsung may have come up with a compromise. They've just announced something they call "hybrid tube technology," which (they say) combines the best audio qualities of tubes with the reliability of something more modern.
By combining the natural, rich sound of analog tubes with the power and efficiency of a digital amplifier, your music plays fuller ranges with no active induced clipping and nearly no distortion. Two greats, in perfect harmony — one incredibly natural sound.
The consumer electronics industry could use something like this. Let's see if it catches on. (Thanks to Rupinder for the news.)