Audiolab 7000A Integrated Amplifier
The new Audiolab 7000A Integrated Amplifier series follows in the footsteps of the award-winning 8000 and 8200 series but also bridges the gap between the phenomenally successful 6000 series and the new high-end 9000 series.
Nestled between the 6000 and 9000, the 7000 fuses premium traits into a pricing category that follows the mantra of class-leading performance.
Outwardly resembling the sequential series and therefore offering a brand-wide visual aesthetic match, the audiolab 7000A improves on the 6000A with a genuine 70W per channel output, a new DAC, a new full-colour IPS LCD screen and more! More compact than the 9000 series, it maintains crisp ergonomics, high-quality engineering, a useful range of facilities and an excellent all-around acoustic performance and connectivity.
audiolab pulls no punches with the genuine nature of our power rating. The 7000A’s discrete Class AB power amp stage delivers 70W per channel into eight ohms, with a maximum current delivery of 9A amps into difficult loads. A new standard in audiolab amplifiers, the output stage of the discrete power amp circuits uses a CFB (Complementary Feedback) topology, ensuring superior linearity and excellent thermal stability, as the idle current is kept independent of the temperature of the output transistors. Critically specified by Jan Ertner (lead engineer for the audiolab brand); the newly developed power supply features a substantial 250VA toroidal transformer, followed by 4x15000uF reservoir capacity (60000uF in total), helps the amp to maintain firm control of the music whilst enabling excellent dynamic range.
Whatever the input source – analogue, digital, wireless or TV – the 7000A has been crafted to the same level of detail one has come to expect from audiolab, all with the latest tech to be fully equipped to cover many bases, yet it maintains a price point that keeps the audiolab brand at the forefront of quality home audio. Dual analogue inputs cater for CD players and line-level sources, dual Coax and SPDIF inputs expand this for the digital sources while a Bluetooth aptX receiver serves up a solution for wireless audio playback and smart devices. Following the growing trend for direct living room integration of premium audio electronics and there for more in tune as the centrepiece of your home audio system, the 7000A takes connectivity to a new dimension with a built-in Audio Return Channel (ARC) connection for use with screens – thus bringing the audiolab dynamic to TV-app based two-channel music playback. And let’s not forget the direct-to-PC connection via USB.
As is standard with audiolab integrated amplifiers, the 7000A reaffirms the natural integration and synergy with an ESS ES9038Q2M chip. Improving on the 6000A with this latest iteration and taking learnings from the 9000A, the 7000A utilises ESS Technology’s 32-bit HyperStream architecture and Time Domain Jitter Eliminator. As with the 9000A, the 7000A uses a post-DAC filter based upon Class A topology and proprietary DC-coupled high-gain electronic amp designs to deliver ultra-low noise and high dynamic range for the digital audio connoisseur.
What’s more, the 7000A also delivers full decoding of MQA, the hi-res streaming technology from a custom-engineered MQA-certified DAC solution. This means that the complete ‘three unfold’ decoding process is performed internally, as opposed to just the final unfold in the manner of an MQA ‘renderer’, which makes the 7000A an excellent system choice for subscribers to Tidal’s ‘HiFi Plus’ tier where Tidal Masters (MQA) content can be found.
The 6000A is applauded for its ability to offer an integrated phono pre-amp solution. The 7000A builds on this with a further improved phono stage for moving magnet phono cartridges – using an improved version of the high-quality, low-noise, JFET-based circuit and precise RIAA equalisation that sets the benchmark in ‘built-in’ phono preamplifier solutions. Same with the dedicated headphone output. Enhancing the versatility claims of the 7000 series, the dedicated headphone amp with current-feedback circuitry caters for the head-fi that lurks in the audiophile! Its gain bandwidth and high slew rate ensure a dynamic, detailed and engaging performance with all manner of headphone types – more boxes ticked for this most integrated of integrated amplifiers.
As the engineers in the audiolab camp have learned with every model and series greatness can be improved upon.
Taking the 6000A as the standard, audiolab know that the regular audio enthusiast’s thirst for specification and features would mean that the eagerly anticipated linear upgrade from the 6000A would instinctively also offer an improved display and general user interface (GUI); hence the vibrant and visually informative 2.8″ (480 x 640mm) IPS display. The detailed but simple-to-use GUI also carries through a general theme of information and structure from the 9000A, just in a more compact style. The GUI includes settings for the digital phase lock loop of the D/C converter (DPLL), brightness, and operational modes. It can even be set to display a VU meter in ‘analogue’ or ‘digital’ form; showing real-time decibel levels for the left and right channels – a satisfying graphical representation of the music as it plays.
As with all audiolab electronic hi-fi components, the audiolab 7000A yet again delivers with remarkable sonic consistency, a plethora of source and connectivity options and crisp styling. Regardless of the source material and format, the 7000A is lively and engaging but also never loses focus on the musicality and detail. Broadness, depth and toe-tapping rhythm are assured.
KEY FEATURES of the Audiolab 7000A Integrated Amplifier
Benchmark – Lifted
The 6000A set the benchmark for the entry-level to audiolab’s award-winning portfolio. The 9000A set the standards at the higher-end of the range. The 7000A takes all of that pedigree and flexibility to a new price class, shaking up the expectations that a class-leading integrated amplifier should offer!
7 Perfect 10s
Using a new critically specified and custom-designed toroidal transformer, the 7000A steps up on the power output front. And that’s a genuine, totally verifiable 70W per channel. No inflation here!
Classes of A and B
Differing from the growing numbers of Class D options offered by rival brands, the 7000A maintains audiophile pedigree with a Class AB design.
Offering high-efficiency amplification, the output stage of the discrete power amp circuits uses a CFB (Complementary Feedback) topology, ensuring superior linearity and excellent thermal stability, as the idle current is kept independent of the temperature of the output transistors.
Name Your Source
Multiple digital and analogue inputs will accommodate the most varied of hi-fi configurations. Bluetooth connectivity, which includes support for the sonically superior aptX codec, allows easy wireless streaming from smartphones, tablets, laptops and more. Bluetooth-paired devices also benefit from the quality of the amp’s DAC section and three digital filter options.
Tables Are Turning
A built-in phono pre-amp with precise RIAA equalisation offers exceptional performance for turntable users.
HD, Am I?
The 7000A offers an Audio Return Channel (ARC) for direct integration with screens and integration into AV systems. As the amplifier can only process two-channel audio from the ARC input, you need to set the ARC setting of your smart TV to output a PCM signal.
Multiple Modus Operandi
Not just an integrated amplifier, the 7000A also offers three distinct operational modes, reflecting the amp’s discrete internal architecture and enabling it to adapt to its user’s evolving requirements.
DACs Like You Know!
The 7000A DAC is built around the ESS ES9038Q2M flagship 32-bit DAC chip, using the critically acclaimed patented HyperStream® II architecture and Time Domain Jitter Eliminator for the highest level of DAC performance.
The 7000A is a full MQA decoder. This means that the complete ‘three unfold’ decoding process is performed internally, as opposed to just the final unfold in the manner of an MQA ‘renderer’.
Putting it on Display
Improving on the class-leading and multi-award winning 6000A, the 7000A offers a 9000A-inspired full-colour display and GUI.
|General Description||Integrated Amplifier|
|Design Philosophy and Core Technology||– 2 x 70W (8 ohms) / 2 x 110W (4 ohms) Class AB|
|– ES9038Q2M 32-bit DAC|
|– 2.8″ (480x640mm) Full View IPS LCD|
|– Built in Certified Hardware MQA Full Decoder (PC USB, Coax / Optical)|
|– Bluetooth 5.0 (aptX / aptX LL) Support|
|– Low Noise Moving Magnet Phono Stage|
|– Dedicated Current-Feedback Headphone amp|
|– Integrated / PRE-POWER / PRE only Modes|
|– VU Digital / VU Analogue Meter|
|– USB Upgrade Support|
|Inputs||3 x Analogue, 1 x Phono (MM), 1 x Power Amplifier,|
|2 x SPDIF (Coax), 2 x SPDIF (Optical), 1 x HDMI ARC,|
|1 x PC USB (USB B), 1 x Bluetooth (aptX/aptX LL), 1 x 12V Trigger|
|Outputs||1 x PRE Amplifier, 1 x Stereo Speaker, 1 x Headphone, 1 x 12V Trigger|
|Sampling Frequency||Optical / Coaxial: 44.1kHz – 192kHz;|
|PC USB: 44.1kHz-768kHz (PCM) / DSD64, DSD128, DSD256, DSD512|
|Gain||+6dB (Line); +55dB (Phono MM)|
|Input Sensitivity||820mV (Line, Volume = 0dB); 3.1mV (Phone MM, Volume = 0dB)|
|Input Impedance||10K (Line); 47K // 100pF (Phono MM)|
|Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)||< 0.0005% (1kHz @ 2V, Volume = 0dB)|
|Frequency Response||20Hz-20kHz (+/-0.1dB)|
|Output Voltage||2.3V max. (Volume = 0dB)|
|Output Impedance||100 ohms|
|Signal-to-Noise Ratio||> 110dB (Line, A-weighted); > 76dB (Phono MM, A-weighted|
|D to A Converter||ES9038Q2M|
|Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)||< 0.0005% (1KHz @ 0dBFS)|
|Output Level (0dBFS, 1kHz)||2.1Vrms|
|Max. Sampling Frequency||Optical, Coaxial: 192kHz;|
|Ethernet, WiFi: 192kHz;|
|USB A: 48kHz;|
|PC USB: PCM768kHz, DSD512|
|Power Amplifier Section|
|Rated Power Output||2 x 70W (8 ohms, THD<1%); 2 x 110W (4 ohms, THD<1%)|
|Frequency Response||20Hz-20kHz (+/-0.3dB)|
|Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)||<0.003% (1kHz @ 40W / 8 ohms)|
|Signal-to-Noise Ratio (S/N)||> 110dB (A-weighted)|
|Max. Output Current||9A|
|Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)||< 0.01% (1kHz, 50mW)|
|Output Impedance||4.7 ohms|
|Load Impedance||20-600 ohms|
|Standby Power Consumption||<0.5W|
|Dimensions (mm) (W x D x H)||444 x 340 x 78|
|Carton Size (mm) (W x D x H)||500 x 455 x 140|
|Finish||Black / Silver|
|Power Requirements||220-240V ~ 50/ 60Hz;|
|(depending on region)||100-120V ~ 50/ 60Hz|
|Standard Accessories||Power Cord, Remote Control, User Manual, Antennas, etc.|
Reviews of the Audiolab 7000A Amplifier:
M Nair –
The amp has a fair amount of muscle, with a claimed 70W per channel, which is more than enough to fill a room with music. The sound is warm and rich, with bags of detail and well-controlled bass. The amp is stable, too, with no discernible noise or hum. I was impressed and surprised at the amazing sound quality of the DAC, built around the flagship ESS ES9038Q2M 32-bit DAC chip, which uses the critically acclaimed HyperStream II architecture and Time Domain Jitter Eliminator for the highest level of DAC performance.
Amrut Mhatre –
I was using the Audiolab 6000a with Lintons, though I did not need an upgrade. But I was curious to know will the Lintons sound better? Mr. Anil spoke to me number of times and I aksed all of my doubts and queries, and 7000a is a really good upgrade over 6000a in everyway. Needed an All in one system too.
Better Bass control, clear highs, dynamic and better soundstange and speration. The DAC is very very good, Phono stage sounds perfect. HDMI input is a added bonus.
Hifimart and Mr. Anil have been superb with the delivery experience to me, they are much much faster than Amazon, Ordered around 2pm and got the amp by 5pm!
Enjoying the music now!