Are you running it balanced? Mine runs at about 9 o'clock range when in balanced mode. I once tried it single-ended just to see how it sounded and had to increase the volume to around 11 o'clock.
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Just found this tit bit of information from Ayre's Manual itself:
"It is normal to listen with the volume knob advanced farther than you may be used to with other equipment.
The volume control offers 1.0 dB steps over most of its range, allowing you to exactly select the desired listening level. To maximize its capabilities, it has been designed so that the volume knob will be between 1 oclock and 3 oclock for a loud playback level in most systems"
Hmmm interesting, are you internal gain setting at max or min level. It is highly recommneded that its set at the lowest 16db gain. I am not sure what mine is but I went back home and started cranking things up a little, my CD Dac has plenty of gain via XLR but just a general acknowledgment on placing it higher that most volume meters but it sounds great at 12 o'clock on mine running through the FBP300cx to the Wilson Sophias.
Rapogee...if you are questioning me, the only gain changing I did was to the phono pre section. I'm using the lowest usable gain that I can - Ayre told me that the phono stage is increasingly better as you ask it for less. I'm using balanced (as everyone should do with Ayre). Preamp is at factory setting for all the other inputs. The preamp/whole system is absolutely dead quiet - even with the ear against the speaker grill cloth.