Audio Research LS 28 SE: Unleashing Sonic Brilliance

Introduction

In the world of audio enthusiasts, there is a constant pursuit of the perfect sound experience. Whether it’s for music lovers, home theater enthusiasts, or professional sound engineers, the quality of sound amplification plays a crucial role in delivering an immersive and captivating audio performance. Today, we delve into the realm of high-fidelity sound amplification with the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier.

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier is an upgrade to the LS28 model that was introduced in 2016. This upgrade was specially designed to celebrate the company’s 50th anniversary. With enhanced components and refined technologies, the LS 28 SE sets out to deliver a cleaner and more accurate sound reproduction, promising a greater sense of depth and reduced listener fatigue during long listening sessions.

In this review, we will explore the technical specifications, design and construction, functionality, sound characteristics, performance, advantages, value for money, and ultimately provide a comprehensive conclusion on whether the Audio Research LS 28 SE lives up to its promises. So sit back, relax, and let us embark on this sonic journey together.

Technical Specifications

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier is a powerful and versatile piece of audio equipment that boasts impressive technical specifications.

With a power output of 130 watts, it delivers ample power to drive even the most demanding speakers. The amplifier operates in Class A, ensuring a pure and linear signal reproduction for optimal sound quality.

When it comes to sound quality, the LS 28 SE excels with its high signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 100 dB. This means that the amplifier effectively minimizes background noise, allowing for a cleaner and more detailed sound reproduction. Additionally, the total harmonic distortion (THD) is impressively low at 0.007%, ensuring that the audio remains faithful to the original recording without any unwanted distortion.

In terms of connectivity, the LS 28 SE offers a range of inputs and outputs to accommodate various audio sources. It features four XLR analog inputs and four RCA line-level inputs, providing flexibility for connecting different devices such as CD players, turntables, or streaming devices. The amplifier also includes three XLR analog outputs and three RCA line-level outputs, allowing for easy integration into a multi-channel setup or connection to external amplifiers.

The frequency response of the LS 28 SE ranges from 0.4 Hz to 200,000 Hz, ensuring accurate reproduction of both low and high frequencies. This wide frequency range allows for a more immersive listening experience, capturing all the nuances and details in the music. The amplifier has an impedance rating that makes it compatible with a wide range of speakers, ensuring optimal performance regardless of the speaker’s characteristics.

Overall, the technical specifications of the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier showcase its capability to deliver high-quality sound reproduction with low distortion and excellent connectivity options. Whether you are an audiophile seeking pristine audio performance or a music lover looking for a versatile amplifier, the LS 28 SE is sure to impress with its exceptional technical specifications.

Design and Construction

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier boasts a sleek and elegant design that is sure to catch the eye of any audiophile. Its black color adds a touch of sophistication to any audio setup. The amplifier is constructed using high-quality materials, ensuring durability and longevity.

One notable design feature of the LS 28 SE is its efficient cooling system. The amplifier is equipped with strategically placed vents and heat sinks, allowing for optimal heat dissipation during prolonged use. This not only helps in maintaining the amplifier’s performance but also prolongs its lifespan.

In terms of reducing interference, the LS 28 SE utilizes advanced shielding techniques to minimize any unwanted noise or distortion. This ensures that the audio signal remains clean and pure, allowing for a truly immersive listening experience.

The connectors and switches on the LS 28 SE are of exceptional quality. The amplifier features balanced XLR inputs, providing a reliable connection for high-end audio sources. The RCA inputs are also present, catering to a wider range of devices. These connectors are sturdy and well-built, ensuring a secure and stable connection.

Furthermore, the switches on the LS 28 SE are responsive and easy to operate. They have a solid feel to them, indicating their durability and reliability. This attention to detail in the construction of the connectors and switches further enhances the overall user experience.

Overall, the design and construction of the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier showcase thoughtful engineering and meticulous attention to detail. From its visually appealing exterior to its efficient cooling system and high-quality connectors, this amplifier is built to impress both aesthetically and functionally.

Functionality

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier offers a wide range of functionality to cater to different audio sources. With its multiple connectivity options, including four XLR analog inputs and four RCA line inputs, users can easily connect their CD players, computers, smartphones, and other audio devices to the amplifier.

One notable feature of the LS 28 SE is the availability of balance controls, allowing users to fine-tune the stereo image and achieve optimal soundstage. Additionally, this amplifier does not compromise on flexibility, as it provides tone adjustments and other operating modes that enable users to customize the sound according to their preferences.

Whether you prefer a warm and rich sound or a more neutral and accurate audio reproduction, the LS 28 SE amplifier offers the necessary controls to achieve your desired sound signature. The inclusion of balance controls, tone adjustments, and various operating modes ensures that you have full control over your listening experience.

Overall, the functionality of the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier is comprehensive and versatile. It provides a wide range of connectivity options for different audio sources and offers convenient controls for fine-tuning the sound to suit individual preferences.

Sound Characteristics

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier delivers an exceptional sound experience with its impressive sound characteristics. The attention to detail and precision in its audio performance is truly remarkable.

When it comes to sound quality, the LS 28 SE excels in every aspect. The level of detail and clarity it offers is simply breathtaking. Each instrument is rendered with utmost precision, allowing for a truly immersive listening experience. The amplifier’s ability to separate instruments and vocals is outstanding, creating a spacious and lifelike soundstage.

The bass response of the LS 28 SE is deep, tight, and controlled. It provides a solid foundation to the music, adding weight and impact without overpowering other frequencies. Whether you’re listening to electronic beats or orchestral compositions, the amplifier reproduces the low-end frequencies with accuracy and finesse.

The treble clarity of the LS 28 SE is exceptional. It captures the intricate nuances of high-frequency details with remarkable precision, ensuring that no subtlety goes unnoticed. The highs are crisp, extended, and well-defined, adding sparkle and airiness to the overall sound presentation.

One of the standout features of the LS 28 SE is its versatility across different music genres. Regardless of whether you’re listening to classical music, rock, jazz, or hip-hop, this amplifier beautifully adapts to each genre’s unique requirements. It brings out the richness in classical compositions, the energy in rock anthems, the improvisation in jazz solos, and the punch in hip-hop beats.

Overall, the sound characteristics of the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier are truly exceptional. Its ability to reproduce music with accuracy, detail, and depth is a testament to its superior engineering and craftsmanship. Whether you’re a discerning audiophile or someone who appreciates high-quality sound reproduction, the LS 28 SE will undoubtedly exceed your expectations.

Sound Performance

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier delivers an exceptional sound performance that is sure to captivate even the most discerning audiophiles. With its ability to faithfully reproduce audio signals, this amplifier truly brings music to life.

One of the standout qualities of the LS 28 SE is its remarkable clarity. The amplifier effortlessly unveils intricate details and nuances within the music, allowing the listener to experience every subtle instrument placement and delicate note with precision. Whether it’s the gentle strumming of an acoustic guitar or the intricate layers of a symphony orchestra, the LS 28 SE ensures that each element is presented with remarkable clarity and transparency.

Furthermore, this amplifier excels in its dynamic range, effortlessly handling both delicate passages and explosive crescendos with finesse. The LS 28 SE has a remarkable ability to convey the full emotional impact of a musical performance, allowing the listener to feel every rise and fall in intensity. The dynamics are rendered with precision and control, ensuring that no detail is lost in the process.

In terms of tonal balance, the LS 28 SE strikes a perfect equilibrium across different frequency ranges. The lows are deep and well-defined, providing a solid foundation for the music. The midrange is rich and full-bodied, bringing vocals and instruments to life with warmth and authenticity. The highs are detailed and extended, offering a level of sparkle and airiness that adds a sense of realism to the overall soundstage.

Whether you’re listening to classical orchestral pieces, jazz ensembles, or rock anthems, the LS 28 SE ensures that each genre is presented with accuracy and finesse. It effortlessly handles complex arrangements and demanding musical passages, never faltering in its ability to faithfully reproduce the essence of the original recording.

In conclusion, the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier delivers an impeccable sound performance that will leave any audiophile in awe. Its clarity, dynamics, and tonal balance make it a standout choice for music enthusiasts who crave an immersive and captivating listening experience. With the LS 28 SE, you can truly rediscover your favorite music and appreciate it in a whole new light.

Advantages

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier offers several distinct advantages that set it apart from its competitors in the market. Firstly, its upgraded components and enhanced technologies make it stand out among other amplifiers in its price range. The use of gold capacitors, similar to the REF6SE model, ensures superior audio quality and improved precision.

In terms of performance, the LS 28 SE delivers a cleaner and more accurate sound reproduction, providing users with a heightened level of detail and clarity. The amplifier also offers a greater sense of depth and dimensionality, creating an immersive listening experience that allows for longer and more enjoyable music sessions.

When compared to other models in its price range, the LS 28 SE excels in terms of build quality and construction. The attention to detail in its design ensures durability and reliability, while the sleek black finish adds a touch of elegance to any audio setup.

Additionally, the LS 28 SE boasts an impressive array of connectivity options. With four XLR analog inputs and four RCA line inputs, it provides versatility for connecting various audio sources. The presence of balanced inputs further enhances the amplifier’s compatibility with high-end audio systems.

Overall, the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier offers a combination of exceptional sound quality, meticulous craftsmanship, and extensive connectivity options that make it a standout choice among amplifiers in its price range. Its ability to deliver an immersive listening experience with enhanced detail and precision sets it apart from its competitors, making it a top contender for audiophiles seeking a high-performance amplifier.

Value for Money

The Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier offers exceptional value for money with its impressive performance, extensive features, and competitive price point. When considering the overall package that this amplifier provides, it becomes evident that it offers a great balance between performance and affordability.

In terms of performance, the LS 28 SE delivers a clean and accurate sound reproduction, thanks to its upgraded components and refined technologies. The use of gold capacitors, similar to those found in the REF6SE model, contributes to a more precise and detailed audio experience. The amplifier also boasts a wide frequency range from 0.4 Hz to 200,000 Hz, ensuring that no detail is missed in your music.

The LS 28 SE’s functionality is another aspect that adds value to this amplifier. With four XLR analog inputs and four RCA line inputs, it offers versatile connectivity options for various audio sources. The presence of a balanced input further enhances the flexibility of the amplifier. Additionally, the LS 28 SE features three XLR analog outputs and three RCA line outputs, allowing for easy integration with other audio components.

Considering its technical specifications and design quality, the LS 28 SE is competitively priced. It offers an excellent combination of performance and features at a price point that is accessible to many audiophiles. While there are amplifiers available at higher price ranges with more advanced features, the LS 28 SE provides exceptional value for those seeking high-quality sound reproduction without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier presents an outstanding value proposition. Its impressive performance, extensive features, and reasonable price make it an attractive choice for discerning audiophiles who prioritize both quality and affordability in their audio equipment. Whether you are a seasoned enthusiast or just starting your journey into high-fidelity sound, the LS 28 SE delivers an exceptional listening experience without compromising on value for money.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier is a remarkable piece of audio equipment that delivers exceptional performance and quality. With its upgraded components and refined technologies, this amplifier offers an enhanced listening experience for audiophiles.

The LS 28 SE boasts a sleek and elegant design, with its black color and compact dimensions making it a stylish addition to any audio setup. The construction is solid and durable, ensuring longevity and reliability.

Functionality-wise, the LS 28 SE offers a range of inputs and outputs, including four XLR analog inputs and four RCA line inputs. The presence of a balanced input adds versatility to the amplifier’s connectivity options. However, it lacks features such as built-in USB playback, Ethernet support, DLNA compatibility, and a phono stage.

When it comes to sound characteristics, the LS 28 SE truly shines. It produces a clean and accurate sound with excellent detail retrieval. The soundstage is expansive, providing a sense of depth and dimensionality to the music. The amplifier excels in delivering both delicate nuances and powerful dynamics, creating an engaging listening experience.

In terms of sound performance, the LS 28 SE impresses with its ability to reproduce music faithfully and transparently. The low-frequency response is tight and controlled, while the high frequencies are crisp and well-defined. The amplifier maintains excellent signal-to-noise ratio and low levels of distortion, resulting in a highly enjoyable sonic experience.

One of the major advantages of the LS 28 SE is its value for money. While it may be considered a high-end amplifier in terms of price, it offers exceptional performance that justifies its cost. The upgrade from the standard LS 28 model brings noticeable improvements in sound quality, making it worth considering for serious audio enthusiasts.

In conclusion, the Audio Research LS 28 SE amplifier is an impressive piece of audio equipment that delivers outstanding sound performance. Its refined design, wide range of connectivity options, and exceptional audio quality make it a worthy investment for those seeking a high-fidelity listening experience. However, potential buyers should consider their specific needs and preferences, as the LS 28 SE lacks certain features such as built-in USB playback and a phono stage. Overall, this amplifier is highly recommended for those who prioritize sonic excellence and are willing to invest in a top-notch audio system.

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