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Ayre Acoustics V-3
16 Reviews
rating  4.94 of 5
MSRP  3875.00
Description: 100 watts


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Reviews 1 - 5 (16 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by nurxhunter a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: June 4, 2006

Bottom Line:   
I agree with reviewer below. The Ayre 3 was auditioned in my home for weeks against CJ MV-52, CJ-MV-55, Aragon 8008ST, NAD Silver S250, Bel Canto 200.2, Monarchy SM70 Pro, Quad 303. Preamp/DAC is EAD Encore (or Cal Alpha 24/96 with NOS tubes) speakers are VSA-VR3.5 (89 db) with dual subs (50 hz cross-over and high roll-off for tube amps) andseveral transports from Cal Audio or Squeezebox 2 with high bit ripping and Meridian 518 for jitter reduction and tricks.

The Ayre destroyed them all--except the MV-55 (with SED 1999 EL84, Sylvania 3M-BP 5751 and exotic 6CG7 rolls--All NOS), which was a close call. The Ayre had the midrange character of tubes, transparant highs, superb sound stage and excellent bass. In fact, the reason I kept it where it was because it was better for mixed 2ch/HT and there are no tube hassles, I can leave it on all weekend and I don't worry that my teens will leave it on or overload, as for tubes. BTW, the MV-52 is an upgraded unit from Bill Thalmann (Music Technology in VA) and is a real sweetheart. See my review on that piece. If you have CJ stuff, think about sending to Bill.

I am a tube junky, but, this piece shows that some SS pieces can do the same tricks, with none of the downside of tubes. It's a joy each time I listen and I am amazed how musical, warm, balanced, holographic, detailed and impactful it sounds. Close to perfect, TME (see below)
Yup, Bravo Ayre!

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1999

Price Paid:    $1400.00

Purchased At:   Agon



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by spgmclean a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: April 24, 2005

Bottom Line:   
Ayre is by far one of the best amps out there. I was lucky to get a fully upgraded current model for a steal. I matched it with the K-3x(see reveiw)a match made in heaven. This amp keeps you involved with the source. If you can find one get it. I am telling you with 30 years of experience behind me.
I tried alot of whats out there(see below) Ayre is the way to go.
The V-3 is what put them on the map. I can see why. If there is one word I would have to use to describe this piece, it would be wicked! Bravo Ayre!

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2000

Price Paid:    $1650.00

Purchased At:   gifted listener



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Jeff a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: July 11, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I thought I'd found the perfect amp when pairing a Pass Aleph 5 with my Aleph P. It was truly a wonderful combination. After having the 5 for a few months I noticed I was listening to more female vocals & jazz than rock & I have more rock than anything. It occurred to me that rock didn't sound quite right with the 5. Selling it was one of the hardest audio decisions I've made but I wanted something that would work with all formats. When I bought the 5 the V-3 was on my short list so I wanted to give it a try. The V-3 I have is ~ 7 years old but had the upgrades done by the factory ~ 6 months before I bought it (I've had it 9 mo). Here's the interesting part. I bought a new set of VR4 Gen III's 4 months ago. It's recommended to break them in at high volume for 100 hrs, so I did just that. The first two playing sessions I smelled an electronic smell & couldn't figure out what it was. In talking to my dealer, he surmised that the Ayre had never been driven very hard & was finishing breaking in. Wow, I bought an almost 7 year old amp that had been babied & pampered. The smell only lasted a few sessions and I subsequently called Ayre out in CO to order a new top plate. There were some superficial marks on it but since the unit looks almost new I wanted to keep it looking that way. In relating my story to the fine folks at Ayre I was told that the unit I had probably had never been run hard & was now very well seasoned. They also said with the upgrades it was probably one of the better sounding V-3's they had ever made. It's nice to know a company thinks highly of its products instead of telling you to trade it in on a newer one. So how does this thing sound? It can rock the house or can play at the lowest possible setting, both with musical results. That's the best thing I can say about this piece. Musical. I don't sit there listening for details, or listen for imaging, or wonder if the tonal representations of the instruments are correct-because it just sounds musical. I've heard 3 shows in the last 6 or so months that I have on CD. Two were acoustic with the exception of the vocals & one was in such a small place they didn't even use a PA. Anyway, when I play my stereo, it transports me back to the shows. In closing, let me say every review you'll ever read is subjective & the best thing you can do is trust your own ears.

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $1550.00

Purchased At:   internet



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by dkely a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 9, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I previously had an Acurus A150, being driven by a Pioneer DVD player -> CAL Alpha 24/96 DAC (with Electro Harmonics tubes from amusicdirect.com) -> Acurus RL-11, driving a 1990 pair of Klipsch KG-4’s. The Acurus did a good job – except for some buzzing that first blew up the right channel last year (and was repaired) started happening again this year and blew out the left channel. I decided to look for a new amp.

There were several system I have heard that had a certain magic to them:
1) Classe CD + Classe Pre + Class Amp + ProAc Response 1’s
2) Pre Ayre K3 + Ayre V3 + B&W Nautilus 801’s,
3) Ayre K3 + Ayre V5 + Avalon speakers
4) Spectral pre + amp + Audio Physics Virgos

Since Spectral amps require a pre, I decided to try:
1) a used 1994 Ayre V-3
2) a Classe 102
3) Sterophile’s Class A amp, the Music Fidelity A3CR

I did my first auditioning using New Order’s Technique at the stores. I like this CD for the music, and because much of it is electronic, and I noticed that most “audiophile” system made it sound like crap. They all sounded great there, so I brought them home for a demo. Right off, the Ayre completely killed the Class and Music Fidelity. I was a little surprised: I would have though the Music Fidelity would have performed better, but the Ayre was just SO much better. Interestingly, the Ayre sounded even better with the Transparent Power cable, the Classe sounded a bit better and the Music Fidelity did not have much of a change.

The Eagles Hell Freezes Over DVD
At home, I auditioned The Eagles Hell Freezes Over DVD. The Music Fidelity had a lot of detail, but was a little grainy and light on the bass. The Classe was more smooth, had more bass than the MF. But the Ayre – WOW! The soundstage extended to the left and right of my speakers, there was much more depth, and the channel separation was so complete, each instrument had its own space! Every movement Joe Walsh made with the guitar fret & strings came across so cleanly it was like being there. On my old Acurus this DVD sounded kind of flat.

U2 The Joshua Tree
This is one of my favorite albums – but it is a murky recording. My favorite song is Exit. Only on the special systems I mentioned at the top have I both heard and felt the buildup of drums in the middle of the song. With the Ayre, it was clear and almost as moving through my Klipsch as through the Nautilus 801’s

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $2500.00

Purchased At:   Audio Consultants, H



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by erzielin a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: March 1, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Update: A great amp by a great company. I posted a review on this amp a while back. This is an update -- Ayre stands behind their products and offers excellent service. All other things being equal, I would take the Ayre amp over a competitors. They're built rock solid, well designed (fully balanced circuitry) and have a great musical sound. I still love this amp. Feel free to email me if you have any questions about my experiences with it: erzielin@hotmail.com

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1998




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