Is there a difference between AR Complete & YBA In

Are the YBA Integre and the Audio Refinement Complete the same amps in different clothing? I am thinking about getting the Integre (single transformer), but have heard that the Complete may have the same components.

Aside from cosmetics and country of assembly are there any major technical differences that warrant the jump in price?

Would I be better off getting the Complete in this price range as compared to the Creek 5350se, MF A3, Classe Cap 101, etc?

One final question, is paying the extra money for the YBA Integre worth it considering there is an upgrade path?

No more questions... thanks
Yves Bernard Andre designed the Audio Refinement Complete and working with his Taiwanese distributor. I believe the only real difference is that the Audio Refinement Complete is mfg'ed in Taiwan to save on costs. One reviewer (IAR)claims that the result is even better sounding than the YBA seperates.

I've not heard the int. amp, but it is very highly rated for it's sonic capabilities. Keep in mind that it is only 50 wpc so your speaker choices will be limited.
I read earlier of a dealer who stopped selling the single Integre becase customer would always opt for the Complete he also sold.

Just beware that that they won't give a 4 ohm rating for the Complete; just the 50 watts at 8 ohms. The Integre is 50w @ 8 ohms and 90w at 4 ohms. So the Complete may not be as good with hard to drive speakers.

If you can afford it, the DT Integre is worth it, if you like the YBA sound. The phono stage with the Integre is first rate. As a side note, at one time YBA use to let you upgrade a single Integre to a DT, but I don't know if they still do.

I purchased an AR Complete around 6 mo ago. I did this to downsize from separates which included a Classe Preamp and Quicksilver 90 watt monoblocks. I have only heard the YBA Integre at a hi fi show, but I do have a friend who owns the YBA 2 amp, which I have heard frequently. I think the YBA Integre will sound a little bit more transparent and a tiny bit more refined, but the difference, to me, is not worth the difference in price. Before getting the Complete, I did audition Classe separates at home and I think the Complete sounded a little smoother and more refined, while the Classe separates were more dynamic (more power, of course). I think the Complete is a good value, if it matches well with your other equipment. I do not find it to be underpowered, but my speakers are very efficient. I do have to say that the Quicksilvers had a much more natural and refined sound (better than the YBA, also) but they are tube amps and have other liabilities. If you're going to spend $1.5K or more on an amp and you don't want tubes, you may also want to check out Electrocompaniet and the Goldmund "budget" line called Job (
Thanks for the info on "Job" Joe. I will check into that. As for the Complete vs the Integre, I have been told that you can still upgrade the original Integre. All they do is put in the second transformer from what I heard. The distributor for both Audio Refinement and YBA insists that the Integre is much different from the Complete. Although the only thing he could really find to justify the difference was the power supply, supposedly much better in the Integre. He basically told me to listen to both...I will do this of course.

As for the Job stuff I'll have to find a retailer somewhere around here...
The Integre uses Double C Transformers which cost 3 to 5 times what toroidal transformers cost.
I think that Job only has one or two dealers in the US and sells mostly by mail order.
I own a DT Integre and I have used the Complete. The build quality of the Complete is very good, but not up to the Integre. For example: the RCA input jacks on the back of the Integre are very high quality. On the Complete, they are just like what you find on a NAD or Rotel product. The control knobs on the Compete are kind of loose, and also feel like a NAD or Rotel product. The Integre controls are firm and solid like other high end products. I am sure the electronics are very good on the Complete, it sure sounds like it. They have to cut corners somewhere to sell it for so much less.
Thanks Sugarbie,

Just curious, is the build quality of the YBA Integre the only thing that swayed you to get it over the Complete? Does the Integre have better sonics ie, soundstaging, bass extension, precision and tone?

The dealer also tells me that the Integre is MUCH better than the Complete.

Speaking of build quality how is the reliability of the YBA products in general?
The comparison asked by you at the top was between the Complete and the Integre I assume. I have a Integre DT in my small home office system. DT is for dual transformer. It outclasses the Complete in resolution of low frequency information and bass extension. I think it goes back to my 4 ohm comment about. The single Integre has the same 4 ohm performance, but is not as dynamic as the DT. The second transformer really makes a difference. The DT sounds much bigger than the 50 watts it is. Also things like vocals and piano sound much more "real" with the DT. Stereophile has the DT in Class A, the Complete in Class B. The DT without phono now lists for $2350. I have MM phono on mine which lists for 2500. With MC phono is $2750. There is a used DT with MM phono listed for $1500 on Audiogon now, and a Complete with remote for $700.

The following was copied from someone elses review, but it sums it up well. (Aaron from McLean, VA) From the full review, it appears Aaron is right on point by using the single Integre, not the DT, but I can't be sure. If you go to under the Complete, you could eMail Aaron and ask.

I must say that the Complete offers incredible sound for $1000. It has quick pacing and keeps up with whatever music you throw at it. It has a very revealing soundstage, keeping the instruments and vocals hovering right where they should be. It's almost holographic, giving you the sense of depth and ambience. Due to its quickness details are extracted for you to hear clear as day. The highs are also very nice, the have a sheen to the sound and are very extended, leaving all of the music information there for you to enjoy. Now, the weakness. What you sacrifice for the strengths above is the bass reproduction. It's tricky to say in words but the bass is there. You here the sound of bass but aren't offered the depth, weight, or realism of bass. Due to this the overall sound of the Complete is hollow or thin sounding. There is no weight to the quick sound. This prevents the Complete from giving the music the "it is there in front of you" sound. You know, complete realism. But for $1000, should I ask it to? Of course not!

Hears where the YBA makes the step up.
The YBA is rated at the same 50 watts per channel but offers one of the most realistic bass response I've heard with any product. This absolutely incredible sense of weight to the music is added. For the first time I actually felt like the music was in front of me. I don't mean the kind that
comes from "If I close my eyes and sit with my head exactly in between the speakers and say yeah, that sounds like what a drum should sound like." I mean that the instruments where tonally precise. The vocals where uncanny. The soundstage was hologrphic. I no longer had to look for it in the music it freakin jumped out and told me what music should sound like. I could no longer find any significant flaws, I didn't question the sound. It was all right there for me to enjoy.

Thanks once again Sugarbie!

Based on your comments I took the opportunity to audition both the Complete and the (Single transformer) Integre. Now I don't know if it's my imagination or not but the Integre (single transformer) sounded more dynamic and full. The bass, while not at all earth shattering on the stand mount speakers I was listening through was definately fuller and more precise than the Complete. The overall sound signature was the same on both units but all styles of music from Tchaikovsky's Pathetic to Arabian Cafe Drum'n Bass had a more palpable presence especially at high volumes. And the build quality and attention to detail seems much better on the Integre.

Based on what I heard I totally concur with all of your comments, "I mean that the instruments where tonally precise.
The vocals where uncanny. The soundstage was holographic. I no longer had to look for it in the music it freakin jumped out and told me what music should sound like. I could no longer find any significant flaws, I didn't question the sound. It was all right there for me to enjoy."

I finally decided to get the Integre (single transformer) with remote because the dealer can offer the DT upgrade at any time. He also mentioned that for a modest sum he could use one of the inputs to make a pre-out. So I got a brand new unit for $1378.00. I may be wrong but I have the feeling that I will be happy with this unit for quite some time, even without the DT version. Even my wife immediately noted how the music seemed to be "purer", more refined and conveyed the emotion of performance better than the CAP 101 I owned previously.

This was a difficult decision because of all the conflicting advice I got: "Go with the Audio Refinement, splurge for the Integre"... Your input has been invaluable. In a certain sense you put the words into my ears... though my ears had the last word...

Happy Listening!! If you ever decide to spin some vinyl, the YBA moving magnet phono stage is excellent for the $150 it costs. I assume(?) they can add that later also. YBA's moving coil phono is $400.

PS: Some of "my" comments above were lifted from Aaron's review and are his. See my headnote. I do agree with them.

YBA is coming out with a 100 watt per channel Passion Integre DT. I am currious to hear it. It will have a list price of around $4,000+.

I just got a Passion Integrated and beleive me, this unit is a good notch over the YBA 2 amp/preamp and very close the the Series 1... It's the best integrated amp I ever heard...

It's well worth the extra pennies (compared to the Integrated DT)...