There are few downsides, although they are more niggles and observations. Sonically, the dynamic range of the Aavik, although wide, is not quite as authentic and edge-of-the-seat as some of the best valve amplifiers out there. However, in terms of solid-state designs, the U-300 Unity is hard to beat. Trivially, a balance control would be nice, but might undermine the minimalism of the overall project as it might require its own button. The ability to process high-resolution to 24/192 might prove limiting in an audiophile world obsessed by 32/384 and DSD files – I hope this is not the case, because I’d rather choose an amp that sounded this good over the (often undefined) promise of superior sound quality from ever higher resolutions.
I started this review by saying how the Aavik is not an ‘also ran’ in the Aavik/Ansuz/Raidho combination seen around the world, but even I was slightly taken aback at how good the U-300 Unity can sound, both in and out of that Danish context. This really is one of the best amplifiers money can buy, and – although you likely need a system capable of resolving that, which may well point you in the direction of Ansuz and Raidho – that applies universally. Recently, Aavik also announced a pre-power system for those needing even more power (at around the same time the new Raidho range-topper was announced). But for the majority of audiophiles in the majority of listening rooms and with the majority of loudspeakers, you might not need to go that extra step. The Aavik U-300 Unity is all you need, and comes very highly recommended!
Type: integrated amplifier
Inputs: Three line-level single-ended stereo pair RCA analogue inputs, one stereo pair RCA inputs for phono, two S/PDIF Coaxial digital inputs with RCA connectors. One Toslink S/PDIF connection. USB B.
Outputs: Five way loudspeaker terminals
Digital formats supported: (USB and S/PDIF RCA) PCM up to 24-bit, 192kHz. (S/PDIF Toslink) PCM up to 24-bit, 96kHz
Power output: 300W into 8Ω, 600W into 4Ω
Attenuation: 100dB to 0dB in 80 steps
Frequency response: not specified
THD+N: < 0.005% (1-100W, 8Ω)
Dimensions (W×D×H): 44×37×10cm
Manufactured by: Aavik Acoustics
Tel: +45 40 51 14 31