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Alex Rudoy SLI-80 Customer Review

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Long time Cary Audio customer, Alex Rudoy, sent us a lovely review of our SLI-80 integrated amplifier. Thank you for your support and for being part of the Cary Audio Family!

“God bless you guys for your incredible product! I have owned your SLI-80 for about 4 years now. I have loved it from the very first moment I connected it to my Maggies 1.7. It was magical in terms of 3D, details and overall quality. There were not many dealers around with tube amps near my Boca Florida location so I was only able to listen to Roque Audio with KT-120 (I think it was the most solid-state sounding tube amp I have ever heard), some Cayin amps (no comment, just can’t understand how people can buy it), and old Musical Reference with 8 EL-34 tubes (nice drive and bass, but doesn’t come close by a country mile to the SLI-80’s details and musicality). So in the end it was an easy choice for me, which I do not regret. Yes, it was probably not that perfect with Maggies 1.7. Particularly because of the lack of proper bass and bloated upper bass notes, not to mention their power-hungry nature. However, overall magic with details and soundstage with my choice of mostly jazz and acoustic genres easily winning in the end. Unfortunately, due to my business I had no choice but to relocate to Freiburg in Germany. I hated the idea of selling my SLI-80 and having to buy it again in Germany, but thank God with your support I was able to re-solder wires for European electric standards and took my beloved amp with me. I quickly restored my setup by buying another Maggie 1.7, but due to much smaller rooms I ran into problems with really bloated bass. I was trying to cure it with room correction and room treatment to no avail and then some thoughts about changing the amp or speakers started to creep into my mind. With that in mind, I drove to the Munich Hi-End show with my wife hoping to hear some alternatives. Unfortunately, besides a few crazy expensive Wilson Alexia setups nothing caught our ear’s attention. And so we went on long and exhausting 4-5 hour trips in one direction to local dealers in the center of Germany, visiting Frankfurt, Essen, Dusseldorf, even Munich again in search of combinations of speakers and amps that could beat our existing setup. We almost came to the conclusion that only Kef Blade 2 and Wilsons were worth thinking about in terms of speakers, but as for amplifiers it was revelation. Our small and not that fancy SLI-80 easily beat everything we put up against it and we tried ridiculous cost no object combinations. I have to say, all those marketed brands like Audio Research, all of the tube ones, Mcintosh 275, Austrian/Chinese :), Ayon 8 KT150, all of Jadis tube ones. Then from solid-state everything from PASS, Ayre, MBL, Einstein to $30,000+ euro combos – ah Jesus where are people’s ears? Nothing, I mean nothing comes close to your SLI-80! No details, no 3D, no magic, no live presence when compared to the SLI-80! It was very funny to look at those dealers faces who skeptically looked at Cary in the beginning and said, “Yeah, cheap ones. We know.” Then after some A/B-ing with their best it was really cool to see their jaws drop…HAHA. Finally, we understood that regardless of price the only amp we can live with happily ever after is Cary only. We were lucky to find one dealer with great room acoustics and Maggie 3.7 on display. That was a real revelation with the SLI-80. A real click with everything. Simply HUGE soundstage, incredible details, air around instruments, proper life like size and positioning…unbelievable.”

We love receiving feedback and photos from our customers! Would you like to send us a customer review and photos of your Cary Audio product(s) for our blog? Please send them to our Marketing Manager, Katie McGinn by email at katie@caryaudio.com.


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