We Come from China, it says on the back of the Kinki Studio EX-M7 power amplifier. Proud of your country. And there is nothing wrong with that! We are also proud of the Netherlands in the sense that we are pretty good at digging tunnels, salvaging ships and building bridges. And we are technologically quite competitive. In short: we think it’s a fine statement to put that on a beautiful product. Now let’s see how the Kinki Studio EX-M7 performs. Is it Full Fury Dragon Power?
We don’t see any red dragons or the color red at all. The Kinki Studio EX-M7 just has a pair of vents on top. With a pair of thick, gold-plated cooling pads underneath. And no fire comes out of those if all works well. The rest of the housing is black. With a display on the front that we don’t think even needed to be there, because all you get to see on it is Standby, Kinki Studio and Operate. After a few seconds, the display turns off and a very discreet little green LED stays on when the amp is on. Yellow if it is in standby. And in case something is wrong, it goes to red.
We know Kinki Studio as a brand with very solid performance (the DAC plays extremely pleasantly, for example) at a very reasonable price. And now when we look at the price of the EX-M7 – 2700 euros – and see the specifications, we can only think: how do they do it?
Let’s name the basics: two times a 400 VA tranformer, EXICON mosfets, Mundorf caps…. All DC coupled. The power it can deliver is 250 watts into 8 Ohms and 400 watts peak. That’s more than enough for almost any speaker. What is bizarre is the bandwidth of this power amplifier. It runs from 0 – 2.5 MHz! Those are Spectral and Soulution values.
The advantage of such a huge bandwidth is that no restrictions in the audio spectrum can be heard. This requires components that can handle this bandwidth, so you really have to shop in the higher segment. However, each link must support this bandwidth… and that is rare. That is why Spectral as well as Soulution recommend a total solution.
In our case, the hardware is in a black casing – discreet appearance – but silver is also possible. Although we find that a tad over the top with that gold. On the back of the casing we see both balanced and single ended inputs. We also see an Earth and Ground connection on the back. This is to be able to ground everything at one point. Kind of interesting. Finally, a trigger input and output and a Ground Lift. Ow… and of course speaker connections.
A special feature of the Kinki Studio is that DC filtering is available. In some homes / households a slight hum is audible through the audio system. That is DC on the mains. So the EX-M7 can eliminate that. Very handy. We fortunately did not need it.