“Top-loader or not, this is one of the finest players we have ever heard.
Regardless of parameter – textures, space, attack, neutrality – the REF CD9 truly
excels. The lack of artifice is as good as it gets.”, Hi-Fi News, 2014 Yearbook
Critically acclaimed, the REF CD9 Player/DAC combines the best of both in a high-resolution compact disc
player with a super high-resolution digital-to-analog converter that is stunning in its musicality. The REF CD9’s
quality is unmistakable, from the formidable casework to the heavy-duty cast metal Pro2 disc transport. It is
an all vacuum tube component with a quartet of 6H30 tubes, just as we use in other Reference components.
In addition to the vacuum tube analog section, the power supply is vacuum tube regulated, giving the CD9 a
dynamic swing and rich tonal saturation only tubes can provide.
Not just a CD player, the REF CD9 has a full-function DAC, able to decode files from 16/44.1 up to 24/192 in all
inputs. Files can be played in their native resolution or upsampled. RCA, AES/EBU, Toslink and Asynchronous
USB 2.0HS inputs assure the REF CD9 provides flexibility. Unsurpassed for compact disc playback, the REF
CD9 utilizes quad 24-bit DACs running in mono mode, with dual master oscillators; one for 44.1/88.2/176.4
sample rates, the other for 48/96/192kHz sample rates. Additionally, there is a selectable digital filter, with
either fast or slow rolloff. Single ended RCA and balanced XLR outputs assure perfect integration with your
audio system. With XLR and BNC digital outputs, you can also use the REF CD9 as a digital transport.
When you insert your favorite compact disc and push play, be prepared to experience a wealth of detail that
was previously hidden in your music collection. Combining the magic of tubes with new levels of transparency
and aliveness, the REF CD9 provides a degree of musical involvement that is truly state of the art, transcending
the 1s and 0s. Stereophile magazine’s “Digital Product of the Year”, the REF CD9’s level of musicality shifts the
balance in the analog versus digital debate.
After nearly 50 years, our focus remains the advancement of the state-of-the-art in music reproduction. Every
component is meticulously hand-crafted and personally auditioned before it leaves our factory. Our attention
to detail, customer service, and product support create unprecedented value. An Audio Research component
is more than a purchase, it’s an investment.
If you value your digital music collection, whether on CD or a compilation of music files, you will hear them in
a revealing and musical new light with the REF CD9. A visit to your Audio Research dealer will open your eyes
and have you digging through that collection.