Avi lab series integrated amplifier


New member
Username: Ravbains

Post Number: 1
Registered: Mar-06
Hi all,

I am just posting, since I own a Avi lab series integrated. I am very happy with this amplifier.

I would be interested to hear comments in this forum from anyone else who owns this fine amp, or has experience with it (dealers etc). I know it has fine print reviews, but I want to hear from 'real people' not hifi reviewers!!!

The rest of my system is a JVC XL-Z1050TN CD player (please don't scoff, its a great machine :-), Linn Sondek LP12/Akito (boxed at the mo), and dubious NAD 802 2way bass reflex speakers (not bad in fact IMHO, says made in Denmark (by whom???) on the back.

I also own a Sony XA-5ES CD player which is also boxed up at the moment.

The Avi lab series replaced a venerable A&R Cambridge A60 amp. I find the Avi amp to be similar to the A60 in the sense that it has a pleasingly smooth mid-band.

I can talk more, but I am interested to hear from other.


Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 1280
Registered: Sep-04
Brilliant amplifier. Excellent value for money here in the UK. Immensely powerful in a dinky little box. Extremely clean sound with loads of resolution for the money. Pacey exciting sound. Since it's so open and clean it's very susceptible to the ancillaries including cables. I tend to use Chord Odyssey speaker cable or Townshend Isolda dct for best results. For interconnects, the cleaner the better. Chord Chorus is the minimum really and Anthm is a big step up.

The amp needs a really good source otherwise it shows up the deficiencies mercilessly. The matching AVI is OK, but I find it a bit uninvolving.


New member
Username: Ravbains

Post Number: 8
Registered: Mar-06
Hi Frank,

thanks for taking the time to reply to my lone post.

I currently live in Melbourne, but I am originally from the UK. I bought the Avi, whilst on a trip back to the UK over xmas. Due to time constraints I did not get a chance to demo it extensively, so largely bought it on a leap of faith, based on the print reviews.

The rest of my system is very humble. I am trying to make improvements as funds permit. But your reply reassures me that the AVi will happily withstand, and benefit in improvements to the rest of my system. You seem to have access to much more equipment than me. I am guessing that you are in the hifi trade?

Recently, I have come to hold a very high regard for my JVC CD player, it is 1991 vintage. The reason for this is that a friend kindly loaned me a Arcam FMJ CD23 player. Now I expected the Arcam to firmly trounce the JVC, but it was not so. The difference was fairly small, the FMJ had a slightly larger soundstage, and the JVC is a little ragged compared to the Arcam (but it is not ragged per se...). So this was a real eye opener for me. I was able to use the Arcam at my leisure, so was able to make meaningful comparisons at home over a period of several days.

My next leap of faith is in the works. My Sony XA-5ES CD player, has gone in to a local mod-shop (soundlabs.com.au).

The Sony was an Ebay purchase, I picked up a mint condition machine for a low price. I love the Sony's sumptuous build (15 kgs) and it has an sublime transport mechanism.

The work to be performed is: 1) fit and LC-Audio XO3 clock module 2) fit a dedicated mains PSU to power the clock module 3) fit a LC-Audio discrete class-A transistorised analogue filter and output stage (this will by-pass the current pulse chips in the Sony, and work straight from the balanced voltage outputs of the DAC) 4) fit a mains PSU for the output stage 5) replace silicon diodes with FRED types 6) install IEC mains inlet socket and lastly 7) replace the caps around the DAC for PSU noise suppression with black gate types.

The Sony is in the shop now, I should get it back in a couple of weeks. I hope this will sort out my CD front end. And then I can focus on the speakers (I love Dyn's BTW, I have heard the Countour S1.4, and 1.3 se both awesome....)

I plan to keep the JVC, for my own DIY experiments. I bought the service manual, and I see much scope for improvement at an affordable cost. In particular the output stage uses the rather old fashioned NE5532 op amps, so there is plenty of scope to refine this machine on a beer budget. Also I plan to fit a new clock to the JVC, and replace all the caps in the digital section with OSCONs, and on the analogue board with most likely Nichicon Muse types.

I am really enjoying the AVi, i find it to be extremely dynamic, and best of all really locks onto the rythmn track making for a very musical and exciting presentation. It has a rare combination of refinement and kick a** dynamics, which is unusual given its price. For me it totally blows the doors off other amps like a Cyrus 8 or a Arcam FMJ A32 (no comparison at all).

thanks again for your reply.
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