Audiolab 6000A Amplifier/DAC Sidebar: Design Choices

Sidebar: Design Choices

With Audiolab's PR and marketing departments in overdrive, messaging the brand's heritage and how this new 6000A model is its most affordable yet, I thought a closer look at the work of Audiolab's long-term designer, Jan Ertner, would prove illuminating. A glance at the 6000A suggests it's based on the 8300A [HFN Mar '16] with the same control layout and very similar casework, but where has Jan trimmed the corners of the 8300A's design? Slightly reduced power output is the most obvious clue, the 6000A rated at 50W/8ohm against 70W/8ohm for the 8300A. While the power amp designs are similar, the 8300A's larger power supply supports 300W into 2ohm and 163W (12.8A) into 1ohm, against 98W/55W (7.4A) under the same dynamic conditions for the 6000A.


So the 8300A will handle low impedance/low sensitivity speakers with a firmer hand despite the 6000A having a usefully lower output impedance (0.011ohm vs. 0.059ohm), and arguably better bass control, and despite the overall frequency response remaining unchanged from one model to the other. The 6000A lacks the 8300A's balanced inputs, and though the overall gain of +37dB is identical, the newcomer is the quieter of the two amps, improving upon the 8300A by over 3dB. Finally, distortion, while remaining very low, increases more gently with frequency in the 6000A than the 8300A, so it's likely that Jan Ertner has polished almost as much as he has trimmed during his latest design challenge. PM

International Audio Group
Supplied by: IAG Ltd, Cambs
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