FrontRunners: Retro Reverence

Releasing an all-tube, stereo amplifier seems like a curious way for a cutting-edge hi-fi company to mark its first quarter-century. The irony is lost on T+A (707.762. 0914, www.taelektroakustik.com), a German company known for advanced solid-state and digital hardware. “The V 10 integrated tube amplifier is the perfect way of proving to music lovers that we still care for two-channel, analog sound,” says Siegfried Amft, the company’s managing director. Apparently, music lovers still care as well: More than 200 amplifiers were sold, on their appearance alone, the day the V 10 debuted. Only six, however, will be available initially in the United States.

The V 10 ($8,000) features sleek styling, soft edges, and radical new circuitry that monitors the amp’s operating temperature and alerts you when the tubes need to be replaced. T+A is not finished looking to the past for its future: The forthcoming component, the G 10, is a turntable.

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