Luxman L590AX vs.590AXii

I am in the position of being able to buy either the 590AX or the 590AXii. The AXii is 2x the cost of the AX. I listened to the AX through Focal Kanta No2 speakers, which I own, and was thoroughly impressed. My question is this: what improvements did Luxman do to the AXii  relative to the AX that might justify spending 2x the cash on it?

The AX I listened to was manufactured in 2015 and is in pristine condition.



Take this with a grain of salt. The dealer whom I bought the L-590AXII from told me that he compared both AXII and AX1 and the new model sounds a lot better than the old one.

The main difference, as I recall, is a beefed up output stage in the MkII.

Edit - Actually, it was the power supply - "The power supply uses a large power transformer with an E-shaped core and a thicker primary wire, as well as eight buffer capacitors of 10,000 uF each, rather than four as in the previous version."

Found this also -

Differences Between Luxman L-590AX and L-590AXII

In order to achieve power without sonic compromise, Luxman implemented its ODNF 4.0 drive circuit utilizing a three-parallel push-pull structure with three-stage Darlington. A Luxman 'Ultimate Efficiency Power Transformer' – an EI type rated at 615VA – forms the heart of the amp's power supply, with plentiful regulation ensuring an unshakable response to any load fluctuations. A high-capacity block capacitor contributes to L-590AXII's ability to deliver lashings of power yet remain firmly in control, while the amp's low-impedance transmission design, carefully selected custom components and short, fully optimized signal paths deliver maximum sonic purity. Compared to L-590AXI, which had only four block capacitors, L-590AX MarkII has eight in total – four each for left and right, the same configuration as Luxman's M-700u. Similarly, whereas the L-590AXI had four output boards, the L-590AXII has eight output boards to drive even more difficult speaker loads with ease.

@ryder - I did read this same response from you in another thread. Thanks for also posting here

@builder3 - This is the info I was looking for. It appears the primary differences are the 8 vs 4 caps and output boards and PS. The attenuator and ODNF circuit also are upgraded. I may want to spend the extra cash for the 590XAll. - Thanks


The improvements will be speaker dependent.  Buy the old one and spend the extra cash on a pair of Fritz speakers

+1 erik.  The need for the additional power supply is dependent on power requirements of the speakers to be driven. 

@erik_squires  @mesch 

I ordered a pair of Tekton DIs to run with my FirstWatt F6. The F6 did a decent job with my Focal Kanta No.2 speakers. I am confident the 590AXll will run the Focals very well. I was concerned about the 590AX. Perhaps my concenr is warranted. My intent is to replace the amps in my primary system, which currently consists of Rogue M-180s and the Focals. The Fritz speakers look very interesting. They certainly will be on my list of speakers to buy next.

Personally, I'd buy the newer version, if nothing else, it's newer. I don't know what your situation is, money-wise, nor the cost of either. I'd opt for a 4 year old amp over a 10 year old one. Either amp will drive those speakers, I think there's probably little difference between them when it comes to actual listening.

Agree with builder3 on his point.  I justify often by the cost difference divided by years of use formula.  Ex:  $1200 price difference divided by 10 years of projected use.  $10/month to have what I really want.  Isn't rationalization great?!

I have the 590AXii and love it. I plan on having it for the next 10 years if not more. Can’t compare it to the 1 for you, but I agree with @builder3 and @celtic66. I rationalized an expensive watch that way. Glad I did. 

Thanks, guys. I guess the other deal for me is the limited number of these available, since they're now discontinued. Not sure what Luxman's plans are at this point.

Just an FYI...

The 590AX was manufactured in 2015 and will cost $3,750, shipping included, while the 2020 590AXll will cost $7,000 plus shipping.

@re-lar-kvothe I own the 590 AXII and I highly recommend it. It does all that I expect it to do. My only other suggestion would be to purchase this unit instead: 


So, I found an L-590AXll on this site for $5200. Only caveat is I will need a step down transformer. Now I am on the hunt for one worthy of this Luxman.

Thanks and Merry Christmas to all that input their ideas and opinions.

Or Happy Holidays if you prefer.

@re-lar-kvothe where we’re you able to find the 509axII for $7k? Or the mk1 for $3750? My speakers are pretty efficient and I may sell my First Watt SIT3 to try one. Thanks. 


An L-590AXll recently sold for less than $7K on USAM. There is an L-550AXll available now on the same site for $5400. Reverb has an L-550AX 120v US version for $3000. Ebay has all versions available from $3K but are shipped from Japan. If you have patience, I am sure one will pop up for sale again here in the US.

I went another route and bought a Pass Labs XA-25. Now I am looking to sell my FirstWatt F6

Thanks. Why did you settle on the Pass vs Luxman? All have strengths and are beautiful products. What speakers are you driving?


I went with the XA-25 because I already have a history the FirstWatt F6 and I got to listen to the Pass on a set up similar to mine. Price was also a factor as was availability. For speakers I have used Focal Kanta No.2s, Moth Audio Cicadas, Zu Audio Soul MKlls, and my tried and trusty Mirage M760s. All sound great. The Focals are obviously in a league of their own however, and I know this will be difficult for some to agree or understand, but the Mirage absolutely love the XA-25 (and the F6 for that matter). I bought the Mirage in 1986 and used them with a variety of new/vintage amps over the years. Never did they sound mismatched with any of the amps. I have owned Spendors and Harbeths paired with a McIntosh MA-5200 as well. None have impressed me as much as the Mirage. Once I found the sweet spot for them I decided to sell the Focals and am in process of selling the Souls. I am going to keep the Cicadas for my low WPC tube amps. 

I was able to get the l590axii for a great price. I have to go out of town so I won’t receive it for a couple weeks. Curious if anyone has used one with an external amp? I love tube amps and have a couple plus a First Watt SIT3. I plan on playing around with configurations using the internal amp and external amps. Perhaps I’ll find the performance of the Luxman good enough to not keep the other amps?