Despite the critical moment we are experiencing in terms of availability of audio and video products, manufacturers continue to present novelties for 2022. On this occasion we have known the new Rotel C8 and C8+, two class AB amplifiers offering 8 channels of high-performance multi-zone audio. They are devices designed for so-called “custom installations”, that is, high-level installations that are usually produced in dedicated rooms using audio racks.
It may not be as common in Spain, due to many factors, but in the United States there are many users who are looking for equipment that can be mounted in racks for high-level installations. In fact, according to various studies, there was a fairly significant spike in sales of multi-channel amplifiers and controllers during the pandemic. Taking advantage of this rebound (let’s leave aside the issue of availability), Rotel wanted to offer two new alternatives aimed at the personalized installation market: the Rotel C8 and the C8+. Let’s take a look at what Rotel’s new multichannel amplifiers have to offer.
Rotel C8 and C8+: multichannel amplifiers for demanding installations
As we anticipated, the new Rotel class AB amplifiers have eight multi-zone audio channels. The amplifiers are powered by a large toroidal transformer self-made that feeds a series of outlets. Rotel claims that the C8 and C8+ have been designed to “comfortably powering even the most demanding speakers in critical listening areas”.
The difference between the models is found in the power. the amplifier Rotel C8 offers 70W per channel into 4 ohm loads, while the amplifier Rotel C8+ offers 150W per channel into 4 ohm loads, with all channels driven. On the other hand, the zone outputs can be bridged to supply 140 W and 300 W respectively, with a PA Override auto-sensing and automatic switching function that offers greater installation flexibility.
Both models feature four analog source inputs available for all zone outputs via internal matrix switching, customizable with independent volume, balance, bass and treble adjustments. What’s more, the Rotel C8+ also includes two optical and two coaxial digital inputs compatible with 24bit/192kHz audio.
The design of the two new Rotel amps is quite industrial, yet elegant. Both the Rotel C8 and the C8+ have a front panel featuring a graphic display with controls to ensure easy setup and operation. These controls include, for example, the selection of the active matrix input source and the volume control of each zone in real time.
The amplifiers have 2U height chassis designed to measure that does not require a free space at the top or bottom, which means that we can make a very efficient mounting in a rack (includes the typical ears to place this type of device). The speaker outputs use detachable phoenix connectors for pre-wiring installation with screw locking mechanisms. On the other hand, they have Ethernet, RS232 and 12V trigger connections for easy integration with the most popular control systems.
The Roll C8 and the Rotel C8+ will be available in the United States from the month of may and soon after they will reach the rest of the world. As for its price, the Roll C8 will go on sale with an official price of $2,599Meanwhile he Rotel C8+ will go up to $3,199. We will have to wait to know its price in euros.
Via | WhatHiFi