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Customer Reviews

Audiolab 6000A Play

Audiolab 6000A Play Stereo integrated amplifier with Bluetooth®, DTS Play-Fi®, and built-in DAC (Black)

MFR # 6000A PLAYBK

5.0 out of 5 stars
10 reviews
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Outstanding British Integrated Amp

Michael from New Braunfels, TX on 1/14/2024

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This little jewel is a bargain. The presentation of the music is clear and detailed, and the soundstage is broad and transparent. I'm running Focal (JM Lab) Cobalt 806 speakers (bookshelf 2-way speaker with 6.5" woofer), which tend to be a "laid back" speaker that at times can be slightly heavy in the bass, depending on the recording. But in most cases the bass is tight and the mids are silky smooth. I use Rega speaker wire, and Audioquest interconnects. Using the Audiolab, I can hear such amazing detail in music with a lot of activity, such as Herbie Hancock's "River: The Joni Letters" and "Map to the Treasure" by Billy Childs. And where it really excels is with jazz trios and quartets with a lot of air, such as Melissa Aldana's Crash Trio, Vijay Iyer's "Accelerando" and his ECM recording "Uneasy," "Leap of Faith" by Dave Douglas, and Mark Turner's group Fly. For analog music with "punch," like "Aja" and "Gaucho" by Steely Dan, the balance, detail and soundstage are wonderful. I conclude that the D/A converter is very warm. Some positive features: The dts Play-Fi was easy to set up. The build quality seems quite fine; for example, the knobs feel nice. The extra auxiliary input is nice, given that I still use a Nakamichi cassette deck. The phono preamp sounds very good.

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3 of 3 found this helpful

Exceptional Sound

James from COLUMBIA, MO on 12/17/2023

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I'm a huge fan of vintage gear, but my 1980s Kenwood amp was slowly dying. I researched quite a few amplifiers to replace it, and felt underwhelmed by available options, power, inputs, etc. One of my biggest concerns was that the "higher end" amps seem to lack any type of tone control. I have always had equalizers, and I understand purist frown upon them. I took the leap with this amp because it has a pre-power mode, which allows use of an external DSP (or equalizer). I also have a subwoofer, so I wasn't sure how all of this would work. Based on other reviews, and the price, I decided to try this Audiolab. WOW! On original play (no subwoofer, no EQ), it sounded, just... meh. Once I switched it to pre-power mode, using the EQ, then fed the subwoofer from one of my EQ outputs, I was blown away. I often leave the sub off, as this thing pumps out the bass. Tweaking the EQ is critical, in my opinion. It made this thing, and my Jamo speakers come to life. Although letting go of the Kenwood was sad, this amp makes me smile every time I listen. The streaming technology is amazing, once I figured it out. Ridiculously good sound quality, and the phono stage is amazing. I definitely recommend this amp.

Pros: Amazing sound, streaming options

Cons: In my opinion, needs an EQ (which is a plus because this amp allows connection of an EQ, which many do not). Subwoofer optional. DTS play-fi app leaves much to be desired.

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0 of 0 found this helpful

What a beaut

Mark from Denver, CO on 3/20/2023

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I don't have much experience, but this is a beautiful Amp. Set up was quick and easy. Play-fi has been working and sounding great. Phono also sounds great.

Pros: Intuitive Great sound

Cons:

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0 of 0 found this helpful

As good as I'd hoped, and then some

Graeme from Falmouth, ME on 3/12/2023

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I purchased these to replace a Buchardt I150, which at nearly twice as much as the 6000A, was supposed to be a perfect match for my S400 MKII. It was not, and the speakers always felt underpowered and they never came alive. Not the case with the 6000A, which immediately made the S400's sing at low volumes with plenty of headroom. The bass is tight and incredibly controlled, and the sound is just, well, incredible. The phono preamp is also very nice sounding for an amp at this price point. It's only been a few days, but I'm listening to more music and really enjoying myself. Can't wait to get to know it more!

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2 of 2 found this helpful

Great value

Jeff from Tx on 1/24/2022

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The 6000a play is a diamond in the rough. I have a main system powered by a PrimaLuna integrated tube amplifier, a bedroom system powered by a Yamaha as801 integrated, and the living room system, powered by the 6000a play. I mention the other systems as references by which I make sonic comparisons. Let me first make it clear the PrimaLuna is a world class integrated amplifier that outperforms gear costing many times its price. That said, the audiolab is not embarrassed by it by any means. Is the PrimaLuna better? Yes, it is, but I'm still very impressed with audiolab. Overall, the main sonic characteristic of the 6000a play is a very engaging quality that makes you want to keep listening for long periods without the slightest bit of listener fatigue, which is very impressive for relatively inexpensive solid state gear. It has a nicely detailed sound that doesn't edit the presentation, neither adding to nor detracting from the music being played on it. There is nice delineation between instruments, each being clearly heard distinctly from one another. It has accurate tonal balance and it does an impressive job of communicating the emotional content of the music rather than presenting music like a sanitized recording that sounds clinical and lifeless. I'm running out of space so bluntly put, it's considerably better than the Yamaha as 801, and the Yamaha is a pretty decent sounding unit in its own right. The audiolab is an outstanding value in my opinion!

Pros: Sound quality, connectivity

Cons: None at this price point

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13 of 14 found this helpful

Captivating Sonic Presentation!

Crutchfield customer from Renton, WA on 10/26/2021

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It's difficult to put into words just how captivating this amp is, but there is an exquisite, delicate sweetness in its presentation that draws the listener in, even during casual listening. After 8 months, I still find myself distracted by its intimacy. Driving Elac's Debut 2.0 F6.2 floorstanders or the more efficient Tekton Lore-S minitowers gives near-equal (though slightly different) satisfaction, suggesting the 6000A maintains that oh-so-sweet sound across a variety of speaker choices. (I cross-shopped 4 amps: 50w Class D, vintage Carver, even a $3K Class A/B.) Physically, the knobs have satisfying tactility. The remote (often a flimsy afterthought) is classy & robust. There is a reassuring "clunk" as the power relay engages a second or so after pressing the on/off button. Full-sized headphone jack. Overall, the build quality seems first-rate. Of note, volume is displayed in old-school dB attenuation units, so a smaller number actually equates to a louder volume level. Only blemish is the finicky DTS Play-Fi app. Always takes a minute or 2 to "find" the amp & sometimes requires a reboot. App info in the manual is a sales pitch only, nothing useful. As a re-entry enthusiast, I don't claim the last word in judging sound [in fact, I find it hard (if not impossible) to hear the difference between the DAC's 3 tone filters (Fast, Slow, Phase)]. But "Satisfied w/purchase"? Understatement of the Year. The 6000APlay punches well above its price clas

Pros: Captivating sound signature Robust build quality Ultra-quiet sound floor

Cons: DTS Play-Fi app

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17 of 18 found this helpful

Audiolab 6000A Play

Crutchfield customer from Berkeley, CA on 9/26/2021

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The Audiolab 6000A Play was easy to set up and very pleasant on the eyes and ears. I can finally hear music through my Paradigm speakers the way they were meant to be listened to. I love the almost endless possibilities of music inputs and playing music throughout my house using the wi-fi broadcasting features. Play-fi is an interesting application and I am still learning all the ins and outs but so far I am pleased with it as well.

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19 of 20 found this helpful

Audiolab 6000A Play

Crutchfield customer from Turlock, CA on 4/23/2021

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I wanted maximum versatility with connections, including use as a preamp or as a power amp only. I wanted sufficient clean power in the amplifier. I wanted the Play-Fi to be easy for wireless lossless streaming to three other house zones. This does it all easily. The amp matches to my Polk S60's better than a vintage Onkyo mono block and a Jolinda hybrid amplifier. The sale price makes this integrated amplifier a sweet deal.

Pros: Easy setup Adequate clean power

Cons: No tone controls or balance controls Two preamp outs, one set dedicated for subs, would have been nice.

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8 of 30 found this helpful

Audiolab 6000A Play

Crutchfield customer from West Covina, CA on 1/17/2021

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This integrated amplifier meets my expectations. It sounds great and easy to use. The WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities are superb. I highly recommended this brand.

Pros: Sound great Easy to instal Easy to setup and use the Bluetooth and WiFi capabilities.

Cons: I haven't seen yet. I hope it will last long the same as my older Yamaha amplifier.

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18 of 21 found this helpful

Great Amp Section Play-Fi Not Ready for Prime Time

Crutchfield customer from Miami, FL on 1/2/2021

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I ordered the 6000A Play after a reading a wide range of positive reviews and looking for a Sonos alternative. Unfortunately, while the sound of the amp was terrific - no complaints there at all, the Play-Fi app and installation were nearly unusable. While I got it to work, it would sometimes drop out, requiring computer restart and the app simply is appalling compared to Sonos. Ending up returning the product. If an amp only is required, I suspect the 6000A - the non-play fi version, should be excellent at the price.

Pros: Clean amp with good sound stage at this price

Cons: Play-Fi just not the consumer friendly app it needs to be to compete with Sonos, Blusound or HEOS - and nearly unworkable.

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17 of 19 found this helpful

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