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Audiolab 8000S - Still a good buy?

 

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Username: Bjg

Post Number: 1
Registered: Mar-04
I'm looking at buying my first 'real' hifi set-up. I've been considering the Rega Brio and Arcam A65+, but have recently found someone selling a secondhand Audiolab 8000S.

I'm in Australia, so retail prices are pretty high. The Rega Brio is $999 ($US760), the Arcam A65+ is $1358 ($US1035), while the used Audiolab is $850 ($US650) [and was purportedly $1950 ($US1500) when new].

How do these amps compare, sonically? The Audiolab is an internet-buy from another state, meaning I won't be able to trial it before I hand over the dosh. I'm also interested to know about reliability; if people have had any trouble with these Audiolab amps?

The Audiolab is pretty well regarded all over the internet, though intimations about a slightly clinical/'grey' sound do concern me a little.

I would most probably be pairing it with a pair of Mission or Monitor bookshelfs and a Cambridge Audio 640C.

Any advice for this hifi neophyte would be very, very helpful.

Thanks.
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