Luxman M-10x Unboxing
Pearl Audio received the new Luxman M-10x reference amplifier arrived today. We will have this on-demo as a regular store demonstrator. We have the M-10x in-stock as well.
Here are a few unboxing photos. The speaker in the background is the new Bowers & Wilkins 801 D4 in Walnut.
Luxman M-10X sealed box prior to opening
Klonk! This is a heavy, heavy box! The box is in such good shape because these come strapped to a heavy wooden pallet with plastic wrap and cardboard corner protectors on the boxes.
Luxman M-10x outermost box with re-useable shipping lockers removed
The white plastic shipping locks serve to attach the outer box to the inner box and form a stronger bond than regular staples or tape. When closed they basically sandwich the two layers of cardboard from the inner and outer boxes together.
Luxman M-10x with outermost box first opened
Note interior strapping - this increased the structural strength of the packaging as a whole. We use this same technique when shipping heavy amplifiers too because it causes the outer box to have less stress and reduces the chance of bursting due to heavy weight.
Luxman M-10X upper clamshell component of box removed.
Here you can see the holes where the plastic shipping lockers bind the inner to the outer box and form a strong and re-useable tie. We see this technique used by Linn for their Klimax Organik, and Bowers & Wilkins for their heavier 800 D4 series. Clamshell boxes with lockers are 100% re-usable and tape-free. We've seen enough 20 year-old hifi boxes with age-crumbled tape to appreciate quality long-term ownership features.
Luxman M-10x accessories and included white gloves.
Below see the manual, cables and gloves. The white gloves may seem superfluous, but when handling a beautiful machined aluminum chassis like the Luxman M-10x, it's very nice to not leave fingerprint oils on the finish. Sure you can wipe them off, but it's best to never leave them in the first place.
Luxman M-10x amplifier with cloth cover on HRS stand
Here in this simple photo we can see another quality long-term ownership feature which is the cloth cover that come with the Luxman M-10x. Cloth covers are wonderful when repackaging an amplifier because you can just place the cover over the amplifier and tuck in the corners - like making a bed.
Luxman M-10x cloth cover removed showing inner foam padding
The thin foam padding under the cloth is another nice touch. It protects the amplifier fine finish from scratches in transit, but also gives you a little more protection but allows grip while placing this heavy amplifier onto a stand or shelf. The general handling drill is to get the amplifier placed then remove the cloth and inner foam, so having thin foam allows you to still grip and maneuver while protecting from minor scratches.
At last, Luxman M-10x unveiling!
Here is the beautiful new M-10x in all of its lovely machined and polished aluminum metalwork glory. In-person you can see the perfection of the fine finished aluminum which is frankly in a class by itself. The meters have been moved a little so the rightmost meter is now centered for use as a monoblock amplifier.
You can use the M-10x as a 150 watt into 8 ohm stereo amplifier with max output of 1200 watts into a 1 ohm load.
You can also use the M-10x as a monoblock amplifier too - just buy a second one. When used in monoblock configuration a pair of Luxman M-10x monoblocks will produce 600 watts into 8 ohms with max output of 2400 watts into a 2 ohm load. <-- this is not a misprint.
Hooking up the Luxman M-10x with Cardas Clear Beyond and CAD GC-1 Grounding
Below you can see we connected up our 9 Meter Long set of Cardas Clear Beyond interconnects and 2.5M Clear Beyond Speaker cables connected to the rear panel of the M-10x. The Luxman M-10x binding posts are absolutely superb - big round knobs that you can grip with your fingers and tighten up good.
The black wire you see above the XLR connectors is a CAD ground wire which leads to a CAD GC-1 grounding device - we use these on many of our in-store electronics because they provide a much better ground than our wall outlets and give us audibly blacker backgrounds.
It may sound minor, but having a quality brass/copper ground connection point with a finger tighten knurled knob on Luxman M-10x is a nice professional feature, and one I wish more high performance companies would include.
Powering up the Luxman M-10x and seeing the meters for the first time
As weird as it seems, this is a bit of an emotional moment for us. This is the very first time we've ever powered on a reference level Luxman component that was developed and released while we've been a dealer for them. When we became a dealer we purchased an M-900u which we of course loved, but at that point the M-900 had been out for over five years. This is Luxman's new state-of-their-art reference sold state amplifier, and we are here to experience the first power-on.
To the right you can see about half of our of the CAD GC-1 ground control unit - little black box with CA showing. The black plate on top is an HRS Nimbus mechanical grounding plate. The Nimbus and related Nimbi are solid machined aluminum with a soft material footer.
Luxman M-10x with Bowers & Wilkins 801 D4
Here is a wider shot showing our lovely new Luxman with our equally gorgeous Bowers and Wilkins 804 D4 in walnut. The aluminum and subtle polish accents on the Luxman M-10x complement the lovely aluminum accents on the 801 D4.
The rest of the system is a Luxman C-900u reference preamplifier with Linn Klimax Organik streamer and Cardas Clear Beyond (XL) power cords.
The sound of the Luxman-M-10x in this system?
Elegant, warm, refined, with a Class A champagne illuminated midrange supported by remarkable transient speed and texture in the bass. You can hear the beautiful Class A sound in the midrange. The M-10x runs Class A up to 12 watts.
The fast powerful bass transients are a well known hallmark quality of the 801 D4, but you need a high performance amplifier that can instantly provide big power (aka high current) to get the full benefit.
We'll post a few more listening thoughts next week or so - we need to let the amplifier warm up and burn in for a few days before it's ready to seriously audition. We also want to play with with our usual suspect 802 D4, 803 D4, Dynaudio Heritage Specials + Confidences, Harbeth 40.3, Magico A3/A5/M2, and Olympica / Electa Amator Maximas. These listening tests with likely candidate speakers are done with each and every major component in our store.
Until we meet again,
John, Russ, Connor & Tara