Audio Research VT100 Mk II Amplifiers

4.87/5 (31 Reviews) MSRP : $4995.00


Product Description

Vaccuum Tube Power Amp


Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

Reviews 1 - 5 (31 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Pacasum a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: June 15, 2010

Bottom Line:   
By far the best power amp I've ever had in my system for the simplest of reasons: It makes you forget it's there and lets you enjoy the music. We sometimes tend to over-analyze the sound instead of listening to music itself. I'm currently running it with LS2B line and PH3 phono stages powering Cary Silver Oak One speakers. I'd like to upgrade to Ref 3 pre-amp and Avalon speakers just to justify the VT100's capabilities. Wish me luck with the upgrades but my VT100 II is here to stay. I wouldn't trade it for any current Audio Research amp. It's just that good.

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mark H a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: January 30, 2010

Bottom Line:   
Before I got this amp, like many people I associate tube amplifiers with low power output and a sound best described as "nice", but somewhat coloured.

However, when you use tubes to make a high-powered, neutral amp like the VT100 things get pretty interesting. This thing simply sounds wonderful - it has plenty of power, attack, drive, and detail (things not usually associated with tube amps) while being very smooth, natural, and musical at the same time. Basically it manages to combine the best sonic attributes of transistor amps and tube ones.

I've never had an amp that excelled so much with all kinds of music, You can listen to AC/DC on it really loud and then it will handle a violin concerto or acoustic guitar with grace.

I am using it with the AR LS25 Mkii linestage, and Magneplanar 1.6s. By the way, this large tube amp is a great match for the maggies.

Tube replacement comes every 2K hours, costs $300 if you do it yourself or up to double at a dealer. I just completed a DIY tube replacement using online instructions and it's not too hard.

This is a definite lifetime keeper. I paid 2K for it 4 years ago, and it shouldn't ever really be worth much less. Beats paying less for a new mainstream amp and having it half in value overnight.

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1996



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by James Tang a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: October 25, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I have owned this amp for 4 years. All I can say is it is an incredible amp. It is very transparent and detailed without losing music. I used to own several different amps, but none of them can compete VT100 MK-II. I pair it with ARC LS-15 and Thiel CS2.3s, and found that it is an excellent audio system. I also use it to drive Rogers LS3/5A. It really makes the speakers disappear. No doubt about it, ARC VT100 MK-II deserves 5 starts all around. Highly recommended. James

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1998

Price Paid:    $4350.00

Purchased At:   Audio Solution



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by yves a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: May 7, 2002

Bottom Line:   
This VT-100 is my first tube amp;it is paired with an ARC LS-2B.Both has been buy used & represent a big improvement over my Conrad Johnson PV-10A & Odissey stratos.The sound of the VT-100 bring some kind of magic to the music!The voices are amazing without the SS effect.

On a technical point of view this amp is VERY WELL built but huge & HEAVY!Ventilation is very important because it is running hot.A good PC is recommend & a dedicated electrical line.Do not plug this amp in any A/C line cond.this will affect the performance.

Of course you have to used it with quality inter. & speaker cables for best results.The balanced mode is better than single end & improved the 3D image.

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by kevyo a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: March 22, 2002

Bottom Line:   
My first time going down the tube amplifier route. I was using the Bryston 4B-ST amplifier for five years. With that said I wish I could have that listening time back using the ARC VT 100 mkII. The Bryston did a fine job and it had the ability to fill the room with sound. From dropping down to 100 watts per channel from 250 watts that the Bryston offered has not been a problem. The sound now is very smooth and makes my speakers disappear.
Many people have the fear of tube amplifiers and the maintence that is required to keep them working,this is an over exageration for the units. I found a tube store in Chicago that sold me all the same tubes for this amplifier for $307.00 including shipping, not bad compared to the price from Audio Research that would cost $900.00 with shipping. I even found a web site that has photographs of retubing the amplifier. That made the job much easier when I could visually see where to place my Ohm meter connections and not to question myself. But back to the sound of this amp,it does wonders on vocals on maybe it is me but I hear a better bass response with the audio Research compared to the Bryston amplifier. The tube life is around 2000 hours ( if you listen to your stereo for 4 hours a week as I do then you should have close to 9 years of tube life)

My setup
1. Speakers Proac 3.8 Response
2. Preamplifier Audio Research Reference 1
3. Amplifier Audio Research VT 100 mk II
4. CD player Classe CDP.3
5. Cables MIT Terminator 2 Biwire speaker and Terminator proline XLR component connectors
6 Power conditioner Monster HTS 1000

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1998

Price Paid:    $2500.00

Purchased At:   Audio Review Classif




Reviews 1 - 5 (31 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating



Sennheiser:



Axiom Audio: