Ayre KX-8
Ayre KX-8
Ayre KX-8

Ayre KX-8: Variable Gain Preamplifier launched

The Colorado based company Ayre has recently broadened its prestigious lineup of audio equipment with the introduction of the KX-8 preamplifier. This innovative device stands out by incorporating Ayre’s exclusive Variable Gain Transconductance (VGT) volume control technology, a feature that has been the hallmark of their flagship KX-R preamplifier. The KX-8 presents a more accessible version of this technology, offering it in a simplified and more affordable package without compromising the quality and performance Ayre is known for.

Designed with flexibility in mind, the KX-8 boasts a modular design that allows users to customize their audio experience according to their specific needs. It offers a wide array of input options, including up to eight digital and network inputs. These comprise an Ethernet port, USB, AES/EBU, two S/PDIF, and three TosLink interfaces, alongside up to five analog inputs, which include two balanced and three unbalanced connections. The inclusion of an Ethernet module renders the preamplifier Roon Ready, enhancing its appeal to audiophiles by supporting popular streaming services such as Spotify, Qobuz, and Tidal directly.

KX-8 Variable Gain Preamplifier
KX-8 Variable Gain Preamplifier

A noteworthy feature of the KX-8 is its high-quality, built-in headphone amplifier, which leverages Ayre’s proprietary Diamond circuit design. This addition ensures the preamplifier’s capability to drive almost any set of headphones, promising an exceptional listening experience regardless of the listener’s preference in headphones.

Ayre KX-8 Back panel
Ayre KX-8 Back panel

 

With a frequency range that spans from 0 Hz to 250 kHz, the KX-8 is crafted to deliver unparalleled audio fidelity across a broad spectrum of sounds. The device’s dimensions are 440 x 330 x 115 mm, and it weighs 5.7 kg, reflecting its solid build quality and the attention to detail Ayre puts into their products. The base version of the KX-8 preamplifier is priced at $6,400, positioning it as a premium offering that brings the esteemed Variable Gain Transconductance technology to a wider audience of audio enthusiasts seeking the pinnacle of sound quality at a somewhat more accessible price point.

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