Hi-Fi News ‘Outstanding Product’: Audio Analogue’s AAdac

“Affecting and exciting, magnificent and powerful.” Andrew Everard and Paul Miller put the third member of Audio Analogue’s PureAA line to the test in Hi-Fi News.

Italian brand Audio Analogue’s PureAA line was spun out of the ‘Anniversary’ models the company launched in 2016 to mark its 20 years in business. The PureAA line now has three models: the AAcento integrated amp, AAphono phonostage and, most recent, the AAdac.

It’s “compact but chunky”, “half-width but deep” in a bid to balance ‘real home’ user-friendliness with high-performance sound, and the fact that it also happens to be packed with a raft of features.

Audio Analogue AAdac silver front

“Yes, this may be a DAC built for performance, from its choice of seven digital filter settings and unbalanced and XLR analogue outputs, but it still aims for some real world appeal, in the form of Bluetooth with aptX,” writes Andrew Everard in the magazine’s November issue.

In a nod to the purists among us, Everard adds, “So [it] has Bluetooth – if you need to, get over it, because beyond that it can also handle almost every hi-res music format you can throw at it. It’ll also drive your headphones via its dedicated output amplifier, and even act as a digital input-only preamp straight into a suitable power amp or even a pair of active speakers.”

But does it all add up? Absolutely, says Everard. “The AAdac scores where it counts: on its build and performance. There’s nothing quirky or tailored about the sound – but rather a balance that provides excellent insight into both playing and recording, delivered with real delicacy, finesse and power, for an unconstrained and entirely involving presentation.”

“It’s affecting and exciting, magnificent and powerful.”

Read the full review in the November 2020 issue of Hi-Fi News.

Discover more at www.audioanalogue.com and find your nearest dealer via UK distributor www.decentaudio.co.uk