Are you planning to buy or already own an Audiolab 6000A, and right now you are looking for matching speakers that are compatible with this fantastic integrated amplifier. Then look no further, as I will be sharing with you some of the top speaker choices which you can shortlist and potentially partner with Audiolab 6000A.
Before we proceed in naming the speakers, we should first look at the important specifications of Audiolab 6000A that will greatly influence the choice of speakers. It is always good to know what are the limitations, as even high-end amplifiers have their own limits and you will still need to be careful when choosing a matching speaker pair for them.
Important Specifications of Audiolab 6000A
The first specification we should look at will be the frequency response, which is at 20Hz – 20kHz. Based on this spec and if you are on a tight budget, then you should consider speakers that have about the same frequency response range because they are typically more affordable. If budget is not an issue, you may want to ignore this.
Audiolab 6000A rated maximum power output for 8 ohms is 2×50 watts. With this in mind, likely floorstanding speakers are out of the picture since typically they require more power to unleash their full potential. Unless you go for highly efficient and sensitive floor standing speakers. Bookshelf speakers will be a better choice over floorstanders as they usually require less power.
For 4 ohms, the rated maximum power output is only 2×75 watts. Even though is higher, you will still need to be cautious when selecting 4 ohms impedance speakers. The way they are designed and built usually requires more power for them to operate at top form. Bookshelf speakers will be a better option for this case.
Audiolab 6000A has a good toroidal transformer for the price, which can handle most music peaks at moderate volume. If you are into bass-heavy music and/or movie soundtracks, I will suggest connecting an active subwoofer via Audiolab 6000A pre-out in ‘Integrated’ mode. The subwoofer will help lift the weight of producing bass off Audiolab 6000A which also helps to prevent the amp from underpowering your speakers.
Sound Characteristic of Audiolab 6000A
It is capable of creating a large soundstage with clear and refined sound. It also reveals the details of the music with clarity. You might not want to get speakers that are bright as the sound may become too clinical when partnering them with Audiolab 6000A. Too bright sounding will also cause listener fatigue and end your music listening session quite fast. More laid-back and warm-sounding speakers will be a better choice. Unless you like to hear every single detail that your song/music has to offer and prefer bright-sounding speakers.
If you are adding an active subwoofer into the mix, the overall sound will be different. It can be for the better or for the worse and will require you to audition them to hear if it suits your taste.
Recommended Speakers to partner with Audiolab 6000A
The top favorite choice will be Bowers & Wilkins 606 bookshelf speakers. Even the aesthetic look of B&W 606 blends in well with Audiolab 6000A, is like they are made for each other. B&W is a reputable brand that produces premium quality high-fidelity speakers. Like Audiolab 6000A, B&W 606 are highly-rated speakers and praised by HiFi critics. The balanced sound of this pair of speakers will partner well with your 6000A amp. Other potential Bowers & Wilkins speakers will be B&W 601 and B&W 602.
Since Audiolab is owned by the International Audio Group (IAG), that also owns the following speaker brands; Wharfedale, Quad Electroacoustics, Mission, and Castle Acoustics. They should partner well with Audiolab amps since they are one big family and they should sound nice together. You can always start with Wharfedale diamond 225 bookshelf speakers as they have well-balanced sound and not fussy in nature. They are highly-rated as well, so definitely worth the audition.
Another great choice will be Monitor Audio Bronze 2, which is also one of the favorites when it comes to speaker pairing with Audiolab 6000A. A front-ported bookshelf speaker with a nice bass weight and balanced sound, the aesthetic feel of the speaker design does lose out to B&W 606 a little. If sound quality is a concern, then you should just ignore the visual aspect of the MA Bronze 2.
KEF is another brilliant and renowned speaker brand that you should check out too. You might want to try auditioning KEF Q350 first. It looks absolutely gorgeous, matches well with your Audiolab 6000A elegance. The sound quality is no slouch too, definitely worth the time to listen to them.
For subwoofers, if you are planning to get one, you should go for the same brand as your speakers. The same series will be even better because speakers and subs of the same brand and series share the same sound signature. This will ensure the sound made by the speakers and sub will blend together seamlessly. You should also go for the sealed subwoofer as they are better for music playback, due to their faster and tighter bass when compared to ported subwoofers.
Audiolab 6000A Pre-amplifier function
For users who prefer only 2.0 and do not want to add a subwoofer. As mentioned earlier, the power output of Audiolab 6000A is adequate but not powerful enough for you to blast your music at excessive volume. Fortunately, you can set Audiolab 6000A to function as a pre-amp and add in power amplifiers to drive your speakers. You can get power amps that are powerful enough to drive floorstanding speakers and by doing so, this will broaden your choice of speakers to include floorstanders.
To sum it up
Due to the power output of Audiolab 6000A, the recommended speakers are mostly bookshelf types and also not bright sounding. Is not a must to buy them, but you should at least audition these speakers with your integrated amplifier. You can use them as a benchmark and try other speaker brands. You might also audition these speakers with a subwoofer and have a listen, as you wouldn’t know you might like it.
Everyone has their own taste in music as well as their own taste in sound. You should only get the speakers that you truly like as they going to stick with you for years to come. You can use the ideas given in this article, like adding power amps and use your Audiolab 6000A as a pre-amp or just simply add a subwoofer, to widen your choice of speakers. The pre-amp function is very useful as you can also integrate 6000A into your home theater setup. Unless you going to buy high sensitivity rating speakers that are also highly efficient, then your amp power output may not matter that much.
Take your time and decide, enjoy the auditioning of speakers, most importantly is to find the HiFi components that you like and just enjoy the music.