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Audiolab's 6000A Play streaming amplifier is a fusion of two five-star products

Audiolab's 6000A Play streaming amplifier is a fusion of two five-star products
(Image credit: Audiolab)

While we would always hesitate to bet on a product’s fate before we had spent time with it, the odds are stacked in favour of the Audiolab 600A Play's success. That's because the streaming amplifier essentially combines the company’s five-star 6000A integrated amp (£599 / AU$1,599) and Award-winning 6000N Play (£449 / AU$1,099) network streamer in a single chassis.

A recipe for success on the face of it, the 6000A Play borrows the 6000A’s amplifier circuitry and marries it with the 6000N Play’s wi-fi streaming technology, which is based on the established DTS Play-Fi platform. 

The result: a just-add-speakers system that can stream music from services like Tidal, Spotify, Amazon Music, Deezer and Qobuz, a DLNA-compatible networked server or, via Bluetooth, a smartphone, as well as accommodate external sources such as a CD player, TV or turntable thanks to its digital, phono and line-level analogue inputs.

(Image credit: Audiolab)

The DTS platform on which the 6000A Play’s streaming experienced is based allows for hi-res playback up to 24-bit/192kHz, in a wireless multiroom capacity that allows the connection of up to 32 Play-Fi-equipped devices. All you need is the DTS Play-Fi control app. By linking the amplifier with any Alexa-supporting smart speaker in the app, it can also be voice-controlled.

Audiolab has worked hard to squeeze the absolute best performance out of the 6000A Play’s Sabre32 DAC chips, carefully choosing op-amps for the post-DAC active filter circuitry that work particularly well with the chips. For all digital audio signals, users can choose between three digital filters - ‘Fast Roll-Off’, ‘Slow Roll-Off’ and ‘Minimum Phase’ – to optimise performance according to the source and partnering equipment.

Similar care has been taken in the analogue stages: the protected preamp section has been kept as simple as possible, with line input signals passing straight to an analogue volume stage, while independent low-noise power supplies for each critical stage have been used to reduce interference and enhance performance.

(Image credit: Audiolab)

The 6000A Play’s phono stage has also been upgraded over the 6000A’s to deliver even better sound quality. And joining the 50-watt-per-channel Class AB power amp stage is a dedicated headphone amplifier for listening through cans, too.

The Audiolab 6000A Play is available from July in a choice of silver or black, at an RRP of £799 (Australian pricing yet to be announced). We look forward to seeing how it stacks up against the current class leader in the sub-£1000 just-add-speakers system category, the Marantz PM7000N.

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  • Splash
    Looks great, but why no HDMI ARC input? I think they have missed a trick there.
    Reply
  • Gray
    Even though much control is done with other devices, I'd still prefer to have a (decent) display screen on the streamer itself.
    Reply