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Wednesday, November 06, 2013
TEAC Releases New 'Fully-Balanced' Stereo Amplifier

TEAC has added a new model to its Reference 501 separates-based mini component hi-fi systems - the AX-501 integrated stereo amplifier.

Capable of delivering 120w per channel (into 4 ohms) the AX-501 has been introduced to provide a higher performance standalone amplifier option to complement the other Reference 501 series components (particularly the UD-501 Dual-Mono Digital-to-Analogue converter and the PD-501HR DSD-compatible disc player).

Sharing the same retro A4-sized 'full metal jacket' casework used by the rest of the range components (with aluminum front, side and top panels) the AX-501 amplifier doesn't need the assistance of cooling fans. That's because it employs a cool-running Class-D ABLETEC power amplifier stage, equally notable for the fact that it consumes just 0.5w (in power-saving mode).

As with the other separates in TEAC's Reference 501 series, an over-sized toroidal transformer has been fitted inside, its output being rectified with the aid of Schottky barrier diodes to provide noise-free internal current.

Connectivity includes three sets of analogue inputs (via RCA sockets) plus a set of fully balanced XLR inputs. The latter, which when correctly implemented offer lower noise levels than RCA, complement the XLR-outputs provided on the UD-501 DAC. A fully-balanced pre-amp analogue stage in the AX-501 promises to preserve the enhanced fidelity of such signals.

Unlike the headphone stages found on many similar-priced amplifiers, this amplifier boasts something special for fans of cans. It features a new CCLC (Coupling Capacitor-less Circuit) system that, as the name suggests, dispenses with coupling capacitors to ensure headphones receive get a stronger, higher-fidelity signal.

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