Tuesday, May 10, 2011

New Rega Brio R!

The big audio news out of the UK this week is Rega's new version of its entry-level Brio, named the Brio R. (The R is for "remote," a welcome addition to an already great product). As you can see, the styling is taken from its very successful DAC, which came out earlier in the year. I've heard the DAC a couple of times, and I think it's probably one of the finest DACs out there for about a grand.

It's no secret that the Brio has earned a lot of fans over the years. I've owned the Brio3 for a couple of years and I can't think of anything that touches it sonically for $700. In fact, my review of the Brio3, which you can see at http://thevinylanachronist.blogspot.com/2010/09/rega-brio-3-integrated-amplifier.html, is my second-most read blog entry since I started this more than a year ago. (For those keeping score, the most read blog entry is also about a Rega, the RP1 turntable.)

The new Brio R will retail for $895. For your extra $200 you get the aforementioned remote, which alone justifies the price increase in my opinion. You also get improvements in the low and high current power supplies, the coupling and the bypass capacitors. You even get an improved phono stage which has been revised to "reflect improvements in current Rega Planar turntables." The input sensitivity has been increased, in other words.

Advanced word is that the Rega Brio R is a stunner and will continue to lead the field when it comes to sub-$1000 solid state integrated amplifiers. I look forward to hearing one soon.

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