Skip to main content

Audio Research unveils high-end Reference CD9 CD player/DAC

On the way from Audio Research is the Reference CD9 CD player/DAC, which will hit UK shops in March at £11,995.

Building on the success of the Reference CD8, it combines a high-resolution DAC with a top-loading CD transport, can handle data at up to 24-bit/192kHz on all its inputs, and has both selectable upsampling for both CD and digital ins, and selectable digital filtering giving either fast or slow roll-off..

Four digital inputs are provided – RCA and AES/EBU electrical, optical and asynchronous USB – and the CD transport is the Philips PRO2R, which Audio Research describes as 'still the best dedicated CD mechanism available'.

Quad 24-bit DACs are used, running in mono mode, and two master oscillators are employed: one for one for 44.1/88.2/176.4 sample rates, the other for 48/96/192kHz.

As you'd expect from Audio Research. the Reference CD9 has a valve-based analogue section, using four 6H30 dual-triodes, while the power supply regulation uses 6550WE and 6H30 valves.

Digital outputs are available on AES/EBU and BNC connectors, and both single-ended RCA and XLR balanced analogue outputs are provided.

Audio Research is distributed in the UK by Absolute Sounds.

Follow whathifi.com on Twitter

Join us on Facebook

Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.