cambridge audio cxa series feature
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Cambridge Audio CXA60 Review

Cambridge Audio, founded in 1968, has always been one of the most representative audio brands in the UK. In recent years, with the continuous expansion of the digital streaming market, they have also made every effort to bring a series of refreshing new series of works. The newly launched Cambridge Audio CXA60 preamp & Network Player is entirely worthy of audiophiles’ attention.

cambridge audio cxa series feature

The appearance of the CX series is quite uniform, and the case made of all metal has a reasonable degree of recognition. The redesigned configuration buttons also inject more modern and fashionable elements into the new machine. Cambridge Audio’s CX series emphasizes the function of integrating with digital music.

Compared with the 851 series, which emphasizes the Hi-End design, this series of equipment is more straightforward in shape, but more modern. The CX series of two-channel combined power amplifiers include Cambridge Audio CXA60 and Cambridge Audio CXA80. It is not difficult to guess the output power of 60W and 80W, respectively (corresponding to 8 ohms) by looking at the name. Although the output power is not enormous, there are indeed many things that Cambridge Audio is proud of.

Stylish Appearance

From the appearance point of view, CXA60, like other works in the series, brings modern and fashionable elements with an all-metal appearance in design. Whether it is bright silver or a lower-key iron-gray, it can present a high-quality metallic color in a low-key color scheme. The black display on the front panel combines LED display and physical buttons. When you press a specific button, the corresponding white LED light will automatically light up, and the volume knob is placed on the far right side of the equipment. The overall design is quite simple and durable.

cambridge audio cxa60

Cambridge Audio CXA60 is not only a unit that can output 60 watts per channel, but it is also equipped with the exclusive DacMagic decoding technology, which can support up to 24Bit high-quality streaming. It can also accept mainstream Bluetooth wireless transmission, and you can enjoy music as long as you connect a pair of speakers. That is worth the attention of entry audio fans.

Strong Overall Performance

The Cambridge Audio CXA60 integrated amplifier adopts Class AB amplifier design and can provide 60 watts of output power under 8-ohm load conditions. If the load is halved to 4 ohms, the CXA60 still has 100 watts of output power.

Cambridge Audio CXA60 is a digital stream network player with high-resolution music decoding. It uses a high-end Wolfson WM8740 DAC chip that can decode 24Bit for conversion and uses its own well-known DacMagic digital conversion circuit architecture. It can ensure that the signal achieves the highest quality transmission quality in the lowest distortion state.

cambridge audio cxa60 interfaces

Optical fiber, coaxial, and Bluetooth wireless transmission function also means that CXA60’s decoding objects will be diverse, including laptops, TVs, or CD players. There is also a set of USB (Type A) terminals on the CXA60’s back panel, specifically used to connect to the BT100 Bluetooth receiver (optional) so that users can use Bluetooth to transmit music signals wirelessly.

Strict Design and Carefully Selected Materials

Cambridge Audio, which has been in the audio industry for many years, has never questioned its unique vision of material selection. The brand-new CXA60 uses a feverish symmetrical structure as the end output in the affordable pricing. The carefully selected toroidal transformer in the center is one of the ingenuity to ensure good sound quality.

Let us look at the internal circuit of the most classic amplifier of CXA60. Cambridge Audio made it clear that even if the CXA60 is positioned as a relatively entry-level model, the new design team put aside the old framework in the past and tried to create a high-quality, cost-effective two-channel amplifier at a limited cost.

cambridge audio cxa60 transformer

The volume control of CXA60 at the front end adopts carefully selected ALPs sound control components, which can realize precise volume control. Therefore, no matter how loud you like, you can always control it perfectly through the left and right channels. In the output circuit at the end of the amplifier, CXA60 adopts a feverish symmetrical circuit structure. The left and right channels are entirely arranged on both sides of the CXA60 amplifier.

In the center is a large toroidal transformer specially designed for Audio. It can bring lower crosstalk interference to the left and right channels, and secondly, it can also deliver better vibration suppression capabilities to the entire device. It is worth mentioning that this high-quality toroidal transformer is a unique customized product, with the advantages of low noise, high power, and low vibration, bringing the purest 60 watts per channel output power to the CXA60.

cambridge audio cxa60 transformer

The precise circuit board layout minimizes the interference (crosstalk) between the left and right stereo channels, so each channel is independent and unaffected. That creates a realistic sound stage as if each instrument is sounding in your room. As if watching a live performance! They achieved this effect by using symmetrical and separated circuit channels and completely separating the left and right heat sinks. These technologies incorporated in the amplifier make its cost several times higher than that of an ordinary amplifier, so the perfect sound effect brought by the CXA60 at this price is simply incredible.

Feature

  • First, this is Cambridge’s first fully balanced circuit design power amplifier. The dual-mono, fully balanced design makes the power amplifier noise and cross-channel interference lower.
  • Second, in the past, to reduce distortion, Cambridge engineers used 46 components on a single channel path. Now, in the CX comprehensive expansion, only 24 components are used, and the same effect can be achieved. That depends on the engineers’ More precise control of features.
  • Third, the transformer on the CXA60 is different from the general transformer in the market. It is equipped with a Dynamic Thermal Tracking System to improve temperature detection performance so that the transformer’s power output is more accurate and real-time.
  • Fourth, the Cambridge Audio CAX60 has a Type-A USB input, allowing users to purchase an external Bluetooth receiver. The CXA60 can be transformed into a wireless transmission power amplifier.
  • Fifth, this is a 60W class AB combined power amplifier and a built-in DAC that supports 24bit/192KHz. The decoding chip uses WM8740, as long as it is matched with a coaxial or optical digital output turntable, like the series of CXC, or You can enjoy high-quality two-channel music with the Blu-ray player in your house.
cambridge audio cxa series

Conclusion

If you happen to be looking for an entry-level digital stream extension recently, don’t miss the new Cambridge CXA60!


Product Highlights

  • 60 watts x 2 channels into 8 ohms (90 watts x 2 channels into 4 ohms)
  • 4-ohm capability allows use with a wide range of speakers
  • THD: 0.02% (20-20,000 Hz at 80% of rated power)
  • built-in high-performance Wolfson WM8740 DAC
  • toroidal power transformer for low noise and high-current output
  • separate left and right channel heat sinks and symmetrical separated circuit paths for maximum stereo separation and minimal cross-channel interference
  • high-quality ALPs film-type volume control provides superb low-level channel balance and stereo imaging
  • relay-based input source switching with silver-plated contacts for maximum signal transfer
  • full-metal casework with thick, brushed aluminum front panel and acoustically damped chassis for enhanced resonance control

Inputs

  • 2 optical and 1 coaxial digital audio inputs
  • 4 stereo RCA audio inputs, 1 front-panel minijack (3.5mm) audio input
  • Bluetooth®-ready with optional Cambridge Audio adapter

Outputs

  • 1 stereo RCA preamp output and a dedicated mono subwoofer output
  • minijack headphone output
  • switchable A+B speaker outputs with binding-post connectors

Other Info and Specs

  • class A/B amplifier design
  • remote control
  • 16-15/16″W x 4-1/2″H x 13-7/16″D
  • weight: 18.3 lbs
  • If connecting to a TV, please make sure you can select “PCM” output in your TV’s audio menu. The built-in DAC cannot decode multi-channel Dolby® Digital signals
  • warranty: 3 years

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