Ayre MX-R and Nagra PL-L

The Ayre MX-R has balanced inputs. My Nagra PL-L has the balanced output option.

Does anybody have any experience partnering the Nagra PL-L with the Ayre's?

I have listened to the Ayre's and despite they were only 200hrs worth they sounded truly impressive. Not having the resource to change my preamp I was considering the purchase of the Ayre as a 1st step.

The Ayre's will be driving either Avalon Indra's or Marten Design Bird speakers. Upstream Raven AC, Reimyo CDP and obviously some good music!

I had the combination of the Nagra PL-L and the Ayre MX-R's for about a year. The combination worked fine using the balanced outputs on the PL-L. The Nagra seemed to have a lot of gain, so the volume control was always set on the low side, even with the jumper inside the pre-amp set to low. Nonetheless, it worked nicely and was quiet.

I replaced the Nagra with the KX-R when it came out, and the improvement is obvious, but as a first step to the Ayre reference line, what you're suggesting should work well.

I have heard this combo (VPS, PLL, and MXR) at my dealer several times. Always sounded great. I have the PLL at home on loan right now hooked up to my BAT VK150SE's, great match there if you want tubes.

I've also heard the PLL with the Luxman m800. That was a great combo. And of course the Nagra VPA are a stellar match, but maybe you need more power.

I have my VPS on the low gain setting, volume control at about 1 o'clock, If I went to high gain or used a CD player, I bet my volume will be the same as yours...