Accuphase E-370 integrated amplifier

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Accuphase E-370

So what we have here is an amplifier which uses considerable technical skill to interfere with the music signal as little as possible. Protection of phase relationships and almost obsessive preservation of fine detail pays enormous dividends when it comes to the rendering of the musical experience. Large-scale is more than adequately catered for: the LSO/Alwyn Tchaikovsky ‘Capriccio Italien’ [Decca] has some phenomenal dynamic swings and leans towards bombast in places, and there was no question the E-370 was up to the task at hand. My listening notes just read: ‘Bloody hell!’, which is shorthand for ‘a rollicking ride, which nevertheless preserved an excellent sense of the passing of thematic material around the orchestra – something often lost in translation’. It’s no one-trick pony, either. I’ve already praised the amp’s felicity with contemplative Scandy jazz, and now ‘When I am laid in earth’ from Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas [Apex] was almost unbearably poignant. The phrasing, the way the searing melodic line plays against the implacable ground bass, and the precise spatial placement of solo, choir, and orchestra, all contributed to a deeply affecting performance.

On to jollier things, and Pink Martini’s ‘No hay problema’ from Sympathique [Wrasse Records] was full of texture and tactile percussion, with a rich, full, but not overly lush piano tone. It’s quite a large ensemble, but their timing and phrasing are always immaculate, and the E-370 drew out every drop of its infectious charm. I have to confess to a certain amount of enthusiastic moving around, grooving, and pointing, to which fortunately there were no witnesses. The title track from the same album had real swing and sway, the skill being the way it manages to strut and stride along, while also being languid and louche. Sinatra, the undisputed genius of subtle timing, was spellbinding on ‘One for my baby’ from Only the lonely (Capitol) and Tom Waits’ ‘Take it with me’ from Mule Variations [Epitaph] had a sense of nostalgic intimacy that draws in the listener. These performers are all, in their way, masters of their art, and to appreciate their artistry, you need to experience all the subtle details and craft that sets them apart. But information without context is nothing, and in this case, ‘context’ means that facility of timing, phrasing, and precision that the Accuphase delivers without apparent effort. It takes genuinely outstanding technology to reproduce great art, and this is quite the best attempt I’ve experienced to date. It’s gone back to the distributors now. I am bereft.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

Type: Solid-state two-channel integrated amplifier

Analogue inputs: 5× single-ended line-level only via RCA jacks; 3× balanced via BNC connectors; 1x power amp input (for an external preamp)

Optional mm/mc phono stage board

Digital inputs: Optional DAC board: co-axial, optical, USB inputs

Analogue outputs: 1× tape loop; 1x pre-amp output; 2× pairs multi-way loudspeaker binding posts

Input sensitivity: (line level input) 142mV for full output

Input impedance: 20kΩ

Signal to Noise Ratio: 107dB (at rated output)

Frequency response: +0 / -0.5dB 20Hz–20kHz

Bandwidth (@1W output): 3Hz–150kHz +0/-3.0dB

Distortion: THD 0.05%, 20Hz–20kHz, 4–16Ω load

IMD: 0.01%

Rated power into 8Ω: 100 Watts, both channels working

Rated power into in 4Ω: 150 Watts, both channels working

Damping Factor: 400 (8Ω load; 50Hz)

Gross Weight: 23kgs

Dimensions (HxWxD): 171 × 465 × 422mm

Price: £6,300

Manufactured by: Accuphase Laboratory, Inc

URL: accuphase.com

Distributed in the UK by: MusicWorks (UK) Ltd

URL: musicworks-hifi.com

Tel: +44(0)161 491 2932

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