Ayre makes the best product Ive ever owned and heard. The only downsize is they are pricey. Ive heard almost as good performance (real close) for much less money.
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I have listened to a number of amplifiers, (Threshold, KR, Lamm and others).
I like the sound from a Vitus, but miss the control from my Crown Studio Reference (bass). But the Crown doesnt sounds good in midrange and treble area. So an amp that combine the good things from Vitus and Crown is what Im looking for, and then I have been told that the Ayre MX-R might me be amp. Unfortunately, it is not possible to borrow the Ayre before purchase. Therefore, the keyword for the amp Im looking for is: control, fast and deliver a great music reproduction.
I'm not resident in U.S., but in Denmark (Europe).
We have an excellent distributor in Denmark named Interceptor. It is my understanding that they, or one of their dealers can loan you the MX-R amplifiers.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact us at 303-442-7300
I´ve had both and both are very very good but very different. I currently use the SS-010 with Consensus Audio Lightning SE´s and a GNSC Statement modded Wadia 781i and couldn´t be happier. The Vitus sounds smoother and more relaxed than the Ayre. Furthermore it´s sound has got more body. Resolution is top notch. The only downside is: it sometimes lacks power and speakers should be quite efficient. The Ayre on the other side has got top notch resolution, attack and speed but sometimes sounds a bit thin and lifeless. The Ayre furthermore is more sensitive to cabelling issues. The Vitus has worked best with speakers using ceramique drivers in our extended listening sessions. For Jazz, life and classical music I would always choose the Vitus, for rock and pop or electronical music (Kraftwerk e.g.) I would go with the Ayre. The Ayre is more flexible with speakers. Hope this helps.
During the past couple of months, I have done intense research on Hans Ole Vitus and he is on his way as the global King of Solid State. On blogs, threads, test reports
and forums, there is a common element of shock from all ears regarding the sound quality. Several reports have put Vitus up against FM Acoustics, Burmester, and Karan, and Vitus trounced everyone of them. Even 6moons was blown away and puts Vitus above all. Vitus has finally achieved what Audiophiles have been seeking for thirty five years, and that is designing solid state pieces far superior to any tube designs in the world. Larry Diaz of High End Palace, who I' have been aware of for years, has golden ears and has stated to me that Vitus has it all and is the best solid state he has ever heard in his entire career. The Vitus sound is rich, full, ultra smooth and fast, lush
silky textures and echo decay to die for. Other brands may be slightly better executing detail, but what Vitus has done is the ultimate marriage between the very best sonic qualities of tube and solid state to perfection with no flaws. Again, the reviews and test reports I have read all over the globe has everyone in shock over Vitus. Ayre is in the minor's compared to Vitus. I have not heard Vitus, but with the bench tests, and the multiple expert evaluations and forums I have read all over the planet,
Vitus has taken the crown away from Boulder and all the other top dog's in solid state and has achieved the Holy Grail.
Frankpiet. Since the Preamp is the most critical part of any system, and you want the speed of the Ayre, it would make sense to apply the Vitus SL-101 Preamp to a very fast
amp, such as the best class D amp on the market, the Spectron Musician III Mk.2 Combining the Vitus with the Spectron would produce a faster slew rate than the Ayre
while retaing the full, rich smooth body of the Vitus which would result very well with rock, pop and electronical music.
It would be good to know what speakers you are using. Without knowing this factor it would be difficult to make a recommendation.
However, having heard both, I would go with the Vitus!!
Small wattage as it may be but it has more body, bloom and sophistication that the Ayre cannot compare.Ayre is a great amp but the Vitus is in a different league.
Audiozen: Sorry but I totally have to disagree with you. Vitus for sure is a very good product but for sure it does not trunch Boulder, FM Acoustics and Goldmund for e.g.
I have replaced the SS-010 with the Boulder 865 and couldn´t be happier. A huge step up in speed, resolution, stageing and controll. The trade of is a bit more coldness and the 865 is a bit thinner sounding than the SS-010.
As for pre-amp: I would look at the Ayon Spheris which is to my ears the best sounding tube pre available with a state of the art phono section on board. Wasn´t to impressed by the SL-101 - regarding it´s price tag.
I had the smaller Vitus in my listening room for nearly 1 month.
My speakers are easy to drive : 98db Horning Agathon Ultimate but the Vitus could not make them sing.
It lacked the power to drive the bass drivers, it also sounded harsh. In fact i also had a AMR AM77 at the same time that was much better (but i bit dark / soft) and a ModWright KWA150 that was much much better for a fraction of the Vitus price.
I neded with the ModWright not because of the price but because of the sound.
Vitus is overrated imho.
@all: Any hype seems problematic (audiozen? how does that SS amp compare to a Berning Quadrature Z? See, that's what I mean - its impossible to know all top rated items)
@chris10an: without being indiscreet, could you elaborate about your experience with Vitus? I would actually like to know, looking into this as well. thanks