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Amplifier Technics SU-V900 review

We always like to include at least one monster amp in our tests and on this occasion it was Technics which came up trumps. The SU-V900 is big. Very big. In many respects it’s a comprehensive analogue version of the company’s SU-MA10 ‘digital’ amplifier, featuring high quality MM and MC phono circuits instead of D/A converter. Five alternative line inputs may either be selected or rerouted via the independent rec-out control, while the bass and treble tone controls may be defeated at will.

In fact the entire range of facilities, including balance, loudness and mode selectors can be bypassed by opting for ‘Power Amp Direct’, a straight-line connection that feeds directly from the volume control to the independent L/R power amps. Two sets of speaker outlets may be used independently or in unison, the latter providing an easy route for biwiring. The binding posts are particularly chunky, in keeping with the stature of this bronze behemoth! Needless to say, the quality and execution of all its controls in addition to the general standard of build are all first class.

Sound Quality

Unaware of the hulking presence that lay behind them, our panel were universally impressed by this amp’s very neutral and even-handed demeanour which was free of band-limiting or emphasis. The remarkably quiet phono stage encouraged music to burst from an inky black silence, so though the sense of space was not as pronounced as with the HK6500, for instance, its resolution of low-level detail was certainly more convincing. Bass sounds were not soft but neither were they as crisp as those provided by either the Pioneer A-300, A-400 or Mission Cyrus Two. Overall, the SU-V900 was placed in the top four or five as far as its disc stage was concerned.

A similarly transparent and airy acoustic was enjoyed via the CD input. There was a tendency for it to drag its heels very slightly in the bass and perhaps there wasn’t quite the dynamic contrast we had come to expect.

Yet individual instruments were supremely separated from the mix while still maintaining a tightly-knit sense of integration. Once again this stemmed from the amp’s faithful portrayal of low-level music detail.

Conclusion

This is a physical brute of an amplifier but one that’s not short on finesse. Certainly, Technics is offering a broad range of facilities on the SU-V900 without significantly undermining its sonic potential, though there is still the faintest electronic ‘tinge’ to its music-making. At this price, a formal recommendation is not quite justified, but the SU-V900 remains well worth considering.

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