Audio Research Reference 320M is being debuted in Meunchen

My ARC dealer told me last night at dinner that Audio Research was finally going to be debuting the long awaited Reference 320M at the Munich High End audio show in May. He told me the product is finished and he said on Wednesday ARC authorized him to begin taking preorders at the current price- which he advised will rise by "a lot" in March. Apparently ARC is raising prices across the board by a big% after not doing so for the last few years.

The 320 is powered by KT 170s which I’ve never seen in real life before. Apparently they are 7" tall. He told me ARC’s "price goal" was to have it come in just under 79K for the pair which is a little less than their Reference 750s.

I have been saving my nickels and dimes toward upgrading my amp and this is really almost *ahem* justifiable cough cough to my wife who surprisingly didn’t veto my plan. I guess the stock market’s performance has her feeling warm and fuzzy. I argued that 2 Burmester 909s in monoblock mode was almost double the Ref 320 and the Burmester sounded like a blizzard in an igloo and looked like a metal ice cube.

I have to admit I’m a huge fan of ARC and have been since 1977 when I first heard a M160 powering a set of Tympanies- so I’m biased. Their rocky road problems after Bill Johnson died/COVID/New ownership have been smoothed out and it sounds like they are going to remain as the bespoke hand made icons they have been for decades.

One bummer is that I don’t have my number in the ARC cue- but my dealer buddy told me my 10K is fully refundable if they fail to deliver. He told me he was worried about his risk if something blew up so he has placed the deposit monies in a dedicated escrow account. I’ve trusted him for 17 years so I’m comfy. I’m anxious to see this 320 hit the market!

128x128Ag insider logo xs@2xyesiam_a_pirate