Audiolab has this week announced a trio of new separates that form the core of its new 7000 series of hi-fi components: the 7000A integrated amplifier, the 7000CDT CD transport and the 7000N Play network streamer.
Let’s tackle ’em one by one.
The 7000A is an integrated amplifier reportedly built ‘in the tradition’ of the 6000A. However, it combines a larger (250VA) toroidal transformer with a complementary feedback circuit for a Class A/B amplifier that promises 70wpc into 8 Ohms and 110wpc into 4 Ohms. Like the 6000A, the 7000A sports an internal DAC (built around an MQA-equipped ESS 9038Q2M chip), an MM phono stage and can be used as a pre-amplifier or power amplifier but unlike the 6000A, the 7000A adds an IPS LCD colour display and an HDMI ARC input to its suite of digital inputs that also include 2 x TOSLNK, 2 x coaxial and USB. Take note: the aerial protruding from the back of the unit is for Bluetooth streams only. Price: €1299
Doubling the aerial count – but this time to play catch on network streams – is the 7000A Play network streamer, which once again put DTS Play-Fi in the driving seat of Tidal, Deezer, Qobuz and Amazon streams. Spotify Connect and Apple AirPlay 2 are also supported. The analogue outputs on the 7000N Play suggest the presence of an internal DAC but the press release doesn’t go into its specifics. Digital outputs number two: coaxial and TOSLINK. Price: €649.
Lastly, the 7000CDT’s digital-only connectivity reminds us that it is a CD transport and not a CD player. Its coaxial and TOSLINK outputs must be hooked up to an outboard D/A converter – or the DAC inside the 7000A – before music can be heard. And like the 7000A, the 7000CDT shares its visual and build quality DNA with the 6000CDT. Where the 7000CDT steps ahead are with its electromagnetically shielded drive mechanism, high-precision crystal clock oscillator and USB-A input. With USB drive contents navigated via the front panel IPS LCD colour display, files from a directly connected USB drive can be streamed to an outboard DAC. Two questions that could be answered by anyone getting their hands on a unit: is USB file playback gapless? Is the CD mechanism a draw/tray or a slot loader? Price: €649.
Further information: Audiolab