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Vincent Audio C-60 CD Transport First Look

Vincent Audio C-60

Vincent Audio C-60


  • Product Name: C-60
  • Manufacturer: Vincent Audio
  • Review Date: April 05, 2010 04:05
  • MSRP: $4,695
  • First Impression: Mildly Interesting

Output voltage: 2.5V Continuous
Frequency range: 10 Hz - 20 kHz +/- 0.5 dB
Dynamic: >100 dB
Signal-to-Noise Ratio: >90 dB
Total harmonic distortion: <0.003 %
Channel separation: >90 dB
Dimensions: 17.7" wide, 4.6" high, 15.35" deep
Weight: 26.5 lbs.

If you are into high end (and we do mean HIGH end) audio, you are going to hear a few arguments. There are those that adhere to the idea that solid state is the way to go. Solid state amplifiers provide a clean, consistent, and most of all flat signal. This, they say, means they don't color the the signal in any way and let the speakers and (these are audiophiles remember) wires and transports do that. On the other hand you have the tube fanatics. These people love the "warm" sound that tubes provide. While the "warmth" of attributed to tubes might be somewhat psychosomatic based on the fact that they physically heat up, the fact is that tubes tend to provide a less that flat response. In fact, they will often change their response based on how long they've been in use (which is why tube owners often suggest a long warm-up period).

Notice, neither of these high end groups are at all interested in the room or room treatments. They'll spend thousands on cabling but nothing on room treatments.

Vincent Audio has long been a provider of high end gear. Everything from transports to pre-amps to amplifiers. Their latest transport, the C-60 provides for all your redbook CD needs with a bit of a twist - it sports selectable solid state and tube output stages.


The Vincent Audio C-60 is a top-loading CD player sporting reportedly excellent mechanical and electrical isolation. It utilizes top-of-the-range Philips transports with 24-bit/192kHz PCN1792 DACs and 8x's oversampling. The C-60 has fully balanced XLR outputs along with traditional RCA outputs. Coaxial and optical outputs are available for a digital connection. On the top you'll find the traditional controls including Play, Stop, Fast Forward, etc. But that's not what's really interesting.

On the front, other than the LED display, you'll notice a Tube/Fet button. This is your selectable tube or solid state output switch. On the tube side the C-60 has cathode follower 6922EH vacuum tube line output with 6Z4 vacuum tube rectifiers. The solid state circuitry has not been specified. With the button depressed, the tubes are engaged. With the button in the "out" position, the solid state output is engaged. This function is also controllable from the aluminum remote which begs the question of what happens to the button setting.

vincent3The remote demands a little attention of its own. We've seen a lot of high end gear with industrial remotes but we think the Vincent Audio remote be one of the best examples of this. Apparently, Vincent Audio customers only listen to music in well lit rooms. The remote is not small (which is fine as it makes it harder to lose), constructed out of aluminum, and has about a hundred small, uniformly sized buttons on only one half of the face. Even if all of those aluminum buttons are ring lit, in a dark room it will be impossible to see the labels on them. Their uniformity and size (extremely small) means that you'll need to memorize the exact row/column location of your favorite function. Maybe you're supposed to operate it by the light of the tubes?

As you'd expect of a high end piece of gear - the aesthetics of the Vincent Audio C-60 are pretty impressive. The transport itself is quite a beauty to behold. The aluminum case with the silver top and black case with rounded corner posts portray all the quality that the $4,695 price tag demands. Oh, don't think that is a lot for a high end transport. It's practically entry-level in this arena. Vincent Audio boasts a fully balanced design for the C-60 with a puck-style magnetic CD stabilizer, physical isolation between the power supply, drive and output stages. The device is heavy, weighing in over 26 lbs, but don't think that's because of all the technology they shoved in the box - the fact is that all aluminum construction will do that. Of course they suggest this will help isolate the unit from vibrations.


Should you buy the Vincent Audio C-60 CD Transport? Well, if you are reading this, we're guessing that you won't. The price tag certainly doesn't speak to people that do much value shopping. From an audiophile perspective, we think the C-60 has some interesting qualities. We like that Vincent Audio is trying to bridge the solid state/tube divide with the C-60. We fear, however, that people that think that static electricity can get into their cables and affect the sound aren't going to want their solid state and tubes anywhere near each other much less in the same box. That being said, the more objective of the two (the solid state people) seem to be the more logical fit for the C-60. This way they can have their solid state with the ability to experiment with tubes (or perhaps switch them on for when they have get togethers). Regardless, much like all esoteric gear, the C-60 is most likely going to be a niche product so as long as they sell a few at $4695 a pop we're sure they'll come out on top.

For more information, please visit www.wsdistributing.com.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

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As Associate Editor at Audioholics, Tom promises to the best of his ability to give each review the same amount of attention, consideration, and thoughtfulness as possible and keep his writings free from undue bias and preconceptions. Any indication, either internally or from another, that bias has entered into his review will be immediately investigated. Substantiation of mistakes or bias will be immediately corrected regardless of personal stake, feelings, or ego.

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