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Cary Audio Design CAD 2A3
4 Reviews
rating  5 of 5
MSRP  2195.00
Description: 5 Watt SE Mono Amp (1991-1993)


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Reviews 1 - 4 (4 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jean McCloud a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: March 27, 2001

Bottom Line:   
This review is for the CAD-2A3SE monos. I opt. for the Chrome chassis which is an extra $500 = $4,000 pair.

It's pretty amazing what these little watts can really do! they sure pack big sound! I was quit surprised they drove my 90db speakers to some very loud levels. I listen 2-3 meters away and there are no audible clipping from my position. Do you really wan't to hear what magic is? Please check these out they are just amazing.

What do they offer you ask?
here below:

1. Speed
2. Timbre
3. Dynamics
4. Bass (I was so surprised here)
5. Transparency
6. Lush mids (this is a delight)
7. sweeeeeet highs!
8. Sound stage width,height,depth

Now I must say when listening to these amps you have to hear them with the Sovteks as I believe they sound better than the KR's they come with. Honestly, the KR's offer more transparency as well as more extened highend. But the Sovteks offers more of "they are here" experience. Don't know what you'd like, try them both!

This about wraps it up! I hope some of you would take the time considering an audition. Of coures with the right equipment (setup). I don't wan't any of you emailing all being upset now ya hear! :^) I'm using 100+ db speakers rightnow.

Happy listening!

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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Steve a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: July 7, 2000

Bottom Line:   

With the right speakers (like the Reference 3A De Capos that I bought to go with these electronics; see my review) these are truly magical amps -- the best I’ve ever heard in over 25 years of audio mania. It’s hard to put into words what makes them so special, but they clearly have the up-side of the “magic of tubes” without the down-side (except, of course, for low power). The best I can do in describing it is to say that they get me closer to hearing the physics of how the instruments make the music: the snap of the guitar string, the crack of a rimshot on a drum, the shimmering vibration of cymbals. With the right recordings, it's like they're right there in the room with me.

They have a wonderful liquidity and acoustic truth yet are amazingly good at presenting high-resolution acoustic detail. The result is a very fast and clean sounding amp that is nonfatiguing and as "truthful" to the music as they come. They aren't warm like a 300B SET tube amp and have a lot more punch and dynamic contrast. I like them a lot better than the 300Bs.

The 2A3s are also capable of presenting a huge, open soundstage, way beyond the edges of the speakers. They also have a surprisingly good, full low end, at least when partnered with an efficient speaker that can reproduce information down there. I don't know how tight the low end is because the De Capos aren't all that tight. (Maybe with a big horn system you could find out.)

In truth, I can’t separate the sound of the 2A3 amp from that of the SP50B preamp, because I bought the direct coupled version of each, and so they function essentially as an integrated amp. But who cares? It’s an amazing state-of-the-art package, in my experience. If you’re an SET freak or just curious about what this SET stuff is all about, you should hear this amp with a really good compatible speaker to find out.

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Jam a an Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: June 7, 1999

Bottom Line:   
It's deceptive how much power these gems can produce. Beautiful liquid sound. Beats my Pass Aleph 3 by a mile. You need sensitive speakers (soliquays, Cabasse, etc..). They are beautiful too, specially at night with the yellow glow of the 2A3, and the gentle blue LEDs.

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Duration Product Used:   an Audio Enthusiast

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Kirby Krause a an Audiophile

Date Reviewed: May 20, 1999

Bottom Line:   
This amp is so good it is scarry. Been doing this over 25 years and this single ended stuff is too good for me to write about. I am not much of a writer, I listen. This is THE se tube in these amps, the KR 2a3, 5 watts. The image is the best of all amps I have tried, including ARC's(4), Atma-sphere(2), Wavelength, Quicksilver, Roland(junk), PS Audio, others. It has very deep base, super detail, it does it all. Must be used with speakers that have about 91db or more, and flat impedence, above 7 ohms.This amp with Soliloquy SM-2a3 speakers took best of show in the Chicago Hi-fi show in May 99, voted by the Stereophile writers, per the Sound Stage web site. My long time audiophile friend and myself felt that way at the show but thought we were bias until we saw that the writers thought the same way.
Well as I said, don't like to write too much, e mail me for more info.
PS. I am the guy that had over 65 top tuners.

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Duration Product Used:   an Audiophile

Reviews 1 - 4 (4 Reviews Total)

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