New A11 & CD11 Tribute models to launch in late audio legend’s honour
Tokyo Japan, August 28, 2020 - Rotel has revealed the launch of two special editions of the company’s hugely popular A11 Integrated Amplifier & CD11 CD Player models, with each named as Tribute versions in celebration of the company’s partnership with the late audio legend Ken Ishiwata.
Ken was widely admired in the hi-fi industry for his unique ability to identify the most worthy, ideal products for modification and then define the musical references plus the suggested component changes to the engineers, in order to take the products’ performance to new levels – often with only a modest increase in price.
Describing the partnership, Chief Technology Officer at Rotel, Daren Orth said: ‘Having both been in the Hi-Fi industry for a similar amount of time, I was in the same audiophile circles with Ken over the years, as were the Tachikawa family in Japan – founders and owners of Rotel. There was mutual respect of the talent and market position and a long desire to work together but the opportunity never arose. An opportunity did finally arrive in the late summer of last year when the initial discussions began, with the project becoming a reality in September. All of the Rotel engineering team were delighted at finally having the opportunity to work with Ken.’
A joint decision was made to focus on the A11 and CD11 - products that Ken was already familiar with and that had already been successful with multiple award wins, especially the A11 which was voted Best Buy Amplifier of the Year 2019-20 in the prestigious EISA Awards.
The team believed that the Class AB 2 x 50W A11 Integrated Amplifier & CD11 CD Player represented the perfect base for taking products that were already excellent and turning them into something very special.
Ken made his initial appraisal and agreed a new specification with the Rotel engineering team. Initial prototypes were then produced by Ken and his own long-term acoustic engineering contacts, with the final spec agreed with the team at Rotel.
For the A11 amplifier, specially selected improved components were chosen to offer higher performance throughout the signal path. In the amplifier stage, all 10 capacitors and two resistors in the signal path were changed.
For the pre-amp, six capacitors were upgraded, representing over 50% of the components in the signal path. All six capacitors in the volume stage were also upgraded.
Custom damping materials were added to the A11’s mechanical chassis to reduce ringing and further isolate/insulate and dampen any vibrations within the product.
For the CD11 CD player eight capacitor changes and one resistor change were made in the DAC stage while in the power supply all nine capacitors were changed with improved components.
Once again, a great deal of thought was given to the damping of internal vibrations with custom damping material added to the top cover to eliminate vibration and ringing, while further changes were made to the mechanical and electrical grounding of the CD player.
Having agreed the changes and having overseen the creation of the first prototypes, Ken very sadly passed away in November 2019, before the project could be completed.
However, some of Ken’s long-term contacts and partners from the industry – including his personal friend Karl-Heinz Fink – volunteered to continue his work with the Rotel team in order to complete the product and to fulfil Ken’s original vision.
The result for the A11 Tribute and the CD11 Tribute is an increase in resolution and detail while delivering a more musical presentation with both improved rhythm and timing.
The upgraded A11 Tribute and CD11 Tribute products are now ready for launch and carry special Tribute badges in honour and as a legacy to the man whose total passion for music, was the impetus that made them happen.
The A11 Tribute and CD11 Tribute are available in both Silver and Black finish.
A11 Tribute Stereo Integrated Amplifier Available in September. Suggested Retail Price: $799, €599, £499
Rotel Class AB amplification, continuous rating 50 Watts per channel into 8 ohms. Custom, in-house developed, oversized toroidal transformer. Moving Magnet Phono Stage. Texas Instruments 24-bit 192kHz DAC. Apt-X and AAC Bluetooth for wireless audio streaming. 4 RCA analogue inputs for ultimate flexibility. A-B speaker 5-way output binding posts. Remote control.
CD11 Tribute CD Player Available in September
Suggested Retail Price: $599, €449, £399
Suggested Retail Price: $599, €449, £399
Tray loading dedicated CD mechanism. Texas Instruments 24-bit 192kHz DAC. RCA Analog and Coaxial Digital output connections. Rotel Balanced Design topology of digital and analogue circuits.
For more information please contact:
Craig Duggan. CMC PR 0203 494 4422. email@example.com
Rotel audio products are known worldwide for their quality, reliability, value, and, above all, exceptional sound reproduction. Since 1961, Rotel has utilized the resources of its formidable international design team and has manufactured its products in its own sophisticated production facilities. Rotel proudly offers a complete range of electronics that have consistently received critical acclaim and coveted industry awards. With substantial investment in new technologies and manufacturing, Rotel is prepared to meet the challenges of an evolving specialty electronics marketplace.