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Naim New Classics at Basil Audio

Naim New Classic 300 Series from Basil Audio

Basil Audio is now please to be playing the New Classics in its California stores.

Basil Audio San Francisco Bay Area: 300 series including NSS333 Streamer and NPX300 Power Supply

Basil Audio San Diego: 200 series including Naim NSC222 Streaming Pre-amplifier and NAP 250 Two-channel Power Amplifier


Naim Classic Clearance Sale

While stocks last, Basil Audio have new and used Classic models for sale including:


NAP 300-DR Two-channel Power Amplifier

NAC252 Preamplifier

NAC282 Preamplifier

Naim NDX2 Network Player

Naim ND5 XS 2 Network Player


NAC282 Preamplifier Ex Demo

NAP 250-DR Two-channel Power Amplifier Ex Demo

Naim NDX2 Network Player

Naim ND5 XS 2 Network Player

SuperCap-DR Power Supply Ex Demo

XPS-DR Power Supply


Please Contact Us for more information.

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Linn Klimax Solo 800 Monoblock Solid State Amplifier Review

Set for Basil Audio Review of Linn Solo 800


variants or stereo-


: solid : solid body



: having or dealing with three dimensions of space


(courtesy of Merriam Webster)

Recently Basil Audio held a series of listening sessions at our San Francisco Bay Area store in Saratoga, California. Attendees were invited to listen to a system that we had built to evaluate and demonstrate the new Linn Klimax Solo 800 mono power amplifier. While the rest of this system has provided us with a reference for some time, the Linn amplifiers were new and provide the option of a system architecture departure from the reference active Linn speaker systems, and so we felt that this system represented a good way to assess the amplifiers alone with otherwise familiar electronics and speakers.

Returning to the opening lines of this review, we are talking about a stereo system – although we now associate this term with two speakers, it wasn’t always the case. The original meaning of the word is clearly from the Greek stereos meaning solid, and the prefix in English that expresses the three dimensionality of space.

At Basil Audio, while we strive to present the best sounding music systems and components to customers at every price point, our goal is to install, assess and adjust the complete system so that it reveals music – not just sound, not just the squeaking of John Bonham’s kick drum pedal, not just dogs barking outside the recording studio. We want to hear every note, in tune and on time. Unfortunately slight errors in speaker placement, miss-guided but well-intentioned cabling tweaks that add phase  distortion and unaccounted for room distortion and many other factors detract from us achieving this goal. To deliver a complete system we need to rely on the truthfulness of our manufacturers and our own ability to asses the final result before we present to customers.

As a result, Basil Audio has come to learn so many “this was better than that” lessons we cannot possibly cover them all in a single review. Some of these surprise people and provoke strong reactions when they come up in conversations in our store. For example, when powering passive speakers we’ve often preferred a single stereo amplifier to two mono amplifiers. The advantages of mono amplifiers in a stereo system are obvious at first sight. Each channel can be supplied with the maximum current of 15 or 20A from the 110-120V mains supply in the US, whereas a single stereo amplifier would share this maximum current with both channels. On the face of it there should be better separation between amplifiers having separate power supplies, cables, chassis and so on. In some cases those responsible for installing the system may prefer to position each amplifier closer to its respective speaker, shortening the speaker cable length in the process. However for some time we’ve found that the seperation of left and right amplifiers tends to distance us from the music somehow, the sound of each channel is clear enough, the sought after “center image” is clear enough however some of the “solid” feeling, the “three-dimensional” feeling and possibly even tune and timing can suffer if we don’t take extra care with the setup.

Why we have this feeling that mono-blocks are not always to be preferred over stereo power amplifiers we don’t completely understand. However one clue could be the practical differences between the amplifier channels themselves. We know that some manufacturers go to great lengths to select and even match components in their amplifiers. Many unanswered questions remain. How closely matched are they actually? Would two amplifiers that are close in serial numbers be better matched? How about consecutive serial numbers? What about if one amplifier is near a drafty open door and the other is close to a corner of the room? If the amplifiers are plugged into different wall outlets does one wall outlet “sound” different from another wall outlet? Which of these and other factors are important and which aren’t? Potentially the new Linn Solo 800 has the answer to these questions.

Intelligent Power Amp

According to Linn, the Linn Solo 800 amplifier features a technology called Adaptive Bias Control. This system automatically adjusts the bias current for each of the amplifier’s transistors in real-time.

Traditionally, Class AB amplifiers, like the Solo 800, require a specific bias current to minimize distortion. However, this current can drift over time due to temperature changes and use. Linn’s Adaptive Bias Control addresses this issue by constantly measuring the current supplied to each transistor and adjusting it to the optimal level.

This continual adjustment offers several benefits:

  • Reduced crossover distortion: By keeping the bias current ideal, the Solo 800 minimizes distortion that can occur when the signal transitions between positive and negative voltages.
  • Consistent performance: The automatic adjustment ensures the amp performs at its best regardless of volume level, music dynamics, or operating temperature.
  • Long-term stability: Throughout the lifespan of the amplifier, Adaptive Bias Control helps maintain optimal performance by automatically counteracting any bias current drift.
So if the consistency is resolved, what about the two channels being in different chassis, with different power supplies, plugged into different wall outlets? What if we could make the power supply in each mono amplifier so good that any differences would be completely inaudible?

Linn call the power supply in the Linn Solo 800Utopik“. The Utopik power supply is a novel switch-mode design that delivers both high performance and efficiency. The key features of this high-tech approach that concern us here are:

  • High Power Output: It provides a maximum of 2kW of power, making it suitable for demanding loudspeaker systems.
  • Clean Power Delivery: The Utopik employs multiple feedback loops and intelligent Valley Switching to minimize electrical noise and ensure a pure, stable output voltage even with fluctuating mains input or dramatic changes in speaker load.
  • Efficiency: Utopik utilizes a technique called soft-switching to minimize energy loss such as through heat and improve overall efficiency. This also contributes to quiet operation.
  • Precision-Regulated Power Rails: The power supply maintains consistent voltage levels across its rails, ensuring optimal performance for connected audio circuits.
After doing all this, are the results justified? Is this just an amplifier for “difficult” speakers that present a low impedance to the amplifier at low frequencies?
Clearly a good test of this amplifier based on its design criteria would be to pair it with “difficult” speakers. The issue for us with that part of the evaluation is that Basil Audio doesn’t currently have such speakers, that is, dipping in impedance well below 3 ohms or even 2 ohms. So we will leave that part of the evaluation for others and trust that Linn too has accounted for the requirement.

We decided after trying several speakers to use the ATC SCM100. This speaker is famously easy to drive, presenting a nominal 8 ohms load even at low frequencies. Therefore the voltage part of power amplification will be very well tested. This is also important since we know that it’s possible for an amplifier to be good at driving current without being able to control voltage equally well in which case load dependent anomalies would be apparent. The ATCs can also play at high sound pressure levels without distortion such as you might hear in a live performance, so we looked forward to that part of the evaluation as doing so requires sufficient current – the ATCs would reveal any limitations at those higher sound pressure levels.

At about the same time as receiving the new Linn amps, we took delivery of our 2-channel demo pair of ATC C4 Mk2 sub-woofers. We had already installed these sub-woofers in several home theater applications where we drove them with the single LFE (low frequency effects) channel, however this would be the first system we had set up with two C4 Mk2 subs in a stereo configuration, that is one for left and one for right. The full evaluation of these sub woofers is a subject for another planned review. Apart from the overall system performance elevation that we found during our initial listening tests, we felt it would be important to add the sub-woofers to make use of the convenient balanced output XLR provided on the rear panel of the Linn Solo 800s. This is relevant because it fits into ATC’s recommendation to leave the main speakers with their natural, non-resonant low frequency roll-off and place the sub-woofer roll-on at a somewhat low frequency (in our case 50Hz) to retain an overall response free of frequency peaks and limit any phase distortion. Note that this also places demand on the amplifier and is a very good test – we see that some amplifier manufacturers recommend passing the full bandwidth signal from the preamplifier or source firstly to the sub-woofer, then from the sub-woofer to the main amps, thereby rolling off the main amps when used with sub-woofers to reduce the load on the amps at low frequencies and improve mid and upper bass control. We are deliberately doing the opposite as provided for by Linn with no need for “Y-cables” or additional first order “stability filters” that can only increase phase distortion which would be the enemy of successful sub-woofer driver and dedicated amplifier integration between the main speakers and Solo 800s.

In putting together this system for audition and review then, we had leaned on many years of experience putting together systems for our customers that would sound the best, given certain restraints. Our only initial restraint for this review was that we would be using the Linn Solo 800 in the system. Beyond that we would be creating a unique system that would be able to use everything we have learned so far to find out just how good these new amps from Linn are. Let’s face it, expectations were high.

How does it sound?

In selecting tracks to audition the new amplifiers, we wanted to play some very familiar recordings as well as some newer not so familiar releases.

The very first track we listened to was the Infernal Dance of the King from Stravinsky: Firebird Suite (1919 Version), a live Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra recording with Mariss Janson, released in 2019 on  BR-Klassik – 24 bit/48kHz FLAC. No system gets a second chance to make a first impression and what a first impression. We were unprepared for the attack of the very first note. Or we should say, the lack of attack. The sound made by the first massive, complex and dramatic tutti and fff chord actually starts before you register the timpani mallet has struck and a fast release reveals the response of the concert hall long after, during the rests in the remainder of the first bar, sounding as only live music possibly can – even the harpist is playing their very own eight note chord, four of them accidentals. Can anyone hear every individual note in the chord? We believe not. Based on this one chord, we could end the review here, as it really tells us everything we need to know about this system and the ability to exactly capture such a huge musical event.

Next up: The Gap Band, Yearning For Your Love from their 1980 album on Mercury Records 16 bit/44.1kHz. This band is an everlasting reminder of Black Wall Street in Tulsa, Oklahoma, spelling as it does the three main streets Greenwood, Archer and Pine of that neighborhood where the Wilson brothers forming the band are from. The signature hooks at the start of the track and incredibly catchy tunes and bass grooves the band is famous for, give way to beautiful harmonies and guitar solos that are simply enthralling. All of this is depicted as a four minute masterpiece by the pair of Linn Solo 800s. How many times have we heard this track as background music in grocery stores, on the radio or streaming without being able to wonder at the the whole song and all of its parts.

Paul Chambers’ bass is instantly recognizable introducing So What from Miles Davis, Kind of Blue (1959, Sony Music Entertainment Inc. 24 bit/192kHz). What is new and so effortless to follow with the Linn amps is the way the bass line weaves in and out with all the other players, sometimes holding the overall pattern, at times breaking the walking pattern to respond to them and always underpinning the piece.


Another favorite live recording of ours is Haydn: Symphony No. 100 “Military”, Handel and Haydn Society & Harry Christophers released in 2020 by CORO. This recording is so much fun however one thing that immediately struck us that hadn’t before was the sound of the cymbals in this recording. This is especially true of the finale. One of our customers who happens to be a drummer has a set of Zildjian cymbals set up in his basement so we recognized the sound right away as will anyone who has attended live rock concerts. It turns out that this choice is part of an imaginative take on HIP (historically informed performance). It was Avedis Zildjian in 1623, predating this symphony that discovered the secret process that links to modern day or in this case the antique cymbals actually used. The cymbals along with the bass drum, triangle and the extraordinary Turkish Crescent “jingling Johnny” together have the very last word of the finale, as if a mirror of the impression made by that first chord in the Firebird, with the unmistakeable sound of the cymbals clearly both joined into and sustaining past the last “note”. Played at the right level and with this extraordinary level of musicians’ ability can recorded music sound just like a live performance? Yes.

A great electronica/vocal favorite in our store is  Marian Hill’s 2015 album Sway (Photo Finish – Republic Records). The track Lovit is guaranteed to grab anyone’s attention when they visit us. This Electronic duo’s combination of natural-like sounds such as “giant” finger snaps, what sounds like amplified water drops and Saxophone samples combine with the seductive vocals in a delightful way that with the incredible seemingly infinitely layered resolving power of the Solo 800s sounds both simple and intricate at the same time. We can only guess that the fun and cleverly attention-grabbing result is perhaps as pleasing to our customers now as the Haydn symphony was to the early classical audience when first performed in London just over 230 years to the day on March 31, 1794.


We can say with certainty that with this system and particularly with the Linn Solo 800s we have found stereochemistry, and at Basil Audio, achieved a truly reference level of musical performance far beyond our expectations using for the first time mono bloc amps with passive speakers and sub-woofers.

System components:

Linn Klimax DSM Network Music Player with Utopik power supply

Linn 50th Anniversary LP12 designed in collaboration with LoveFrom

Linn Majik LP12 MM

Linn Majik DSM (used as a MM phone stage and network source for the Majik LP12)

Linn Solo 800 Amplifiers

Naim Statement Preamplifier

ATC SCM100PSLT Loudspeakers

ATC C4 Mk2 Sub-woofers

Cables: Basil Audio and Naim Super Lumina

Space optimization (Linn’s room correction system) performed by Basil Audio

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Michell Engineering

Basil Audio is now a Michell dealer.

Continuing the pride if british audio we are happy to welcome Michell Engineering to our brand family.

John Michell began his engineering career when he served an apprenticeship with Finchley Autos in the early fifties.  Deciding to start his own business, he set up in his garden shed and quickly moved to a small industrial unit in North London. Working at a jobbing engineering company, he soon outgrew the premisies so , during the mid ’60’s, moved to Borehamwood, which is where the company is still based today.  Although very much an engineering company, John also made scale models and it was during this time that he met Stanley Kubrick and built the ship ‘Discovery’ for the film 2001 – Space Odyssey, later to become the inspiration for the GyroDec.
Following on from the success of the GyroDec and from its customers, Michell Engineering launched the flagship Orbe in 1995. Developed as a true high-end performance turntable, the Orbe features significant engineering improvements over the GyroDec. Still the company’s flagship turntable, the Orbe has undergone refinements over the years and now offers a performance way beyond its price bracket.
With the recent launch of the Gyro SEduction, Michell Engineering goes from strength to strength and through great support from customers and suppliers continues to be one of Britian’s iconic HiFi marques.

Please contact us at Basil Audio at 408-647-5407 if you wish to discuss purchasing a Michell turntable.


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Linn Selekt Press Release


Introducing Selekt DSM: Hi-fi with the human touch

Under embargo un<l 20th September 2018

Music streaming pioneer, Linn, today announces the launch of Selekt DSM, an all-new Linn network music player that promises to bring the feeling back to digital audio.
Delivering a tac<le and beau<ful musical experience, Selekt DSM will make any system sound beJer and help you fall in love with music all over again.

Gilad Tiefenbrun, Linn Managing Director said, ‘We love the clarity of digital music, but we also love the tac<lity of physical records. It’s easy to feel we’ve lost touch with the immersive experience of playing a vinyl record – the LP selec<on, the liR-lower, the an<cipa<on during those first pops and clicks – and that playing music requires only a swipe and a tap.

Selekt DSM revolu<onises our physical interac<on with digital music; every aspect is precision engineered for a tac<le and enriched listening experience.’

Bringing the feeling back

Selekt DSM’s jewel-like dial and smart buJons are ready to be personalised to your wishes, providing instant access to your favourite music by making it possible to operate the product without the need for an app.

The cut-glass dial begins to glow when approached and turns with watch-like precision in response to a touch.

The customisable smart buJons, which have been craRed to feel like piano keys, respond instantly with the detailed music informa<on appearing on the onyx-black OLED display.

The best for every music lover

Available through Linn Specialists, Selekt DSM fits with any system. It’s available as a dedicated streaming source to drive any separates system, or you can include an integrated amplifier to streamline your system: just add speakers.

Either way, there’s an op<on to push the performance even further with Katalyst, Linn’s cu[ng-edge DAC architecture.

Selekt DSM’s on-board pre-amplifier enables all sources to be connected, including a turntable, for beJer sound, instantly.

Sound uniquely tailored for you

Selekt DSM includes the new version of Linn’s ground-breaking Space Op<misa<on technology. Space Op<misa<on uses Linn’s unique digital signal processing to ensure you get the best possible sound from any Linn DSM network music player, removing the distor<ng effects of your room.



Now everyone can place their speakers exactly where they want them and s<ll enjoy the best performance possible.

Beauty you can hear

Selekt DSM is as stunning to look at as it is to listen to. Every element is precision engineered for the most authen<c musical performance possible.

Machined vents flow across the sleeve, tracing a path along the heat sources for natural cooling. Chromed feet anchor it to the shelf, with a plaque celebra<ng its unique origin: every Selekt DSM is handbuilt with pride in the Linn factory in Glasgow.

Products and pricing

Selekt DSM is modular and upgradeable, designed to allow a customer to configure exactly what is important to them based on how it will be used in their home.
The below configura<ons are selected at the point of purchase or can be upgraded to at a later date, enhancing performance or func<on, or both.

Selekt DSM
Selekt DSM with integrated power amp Selekt DSM with Katalyst
Selekt DSM with integrated amp and Katalyst

$5,200 / $CAD 6,999 $6,825 / $CAD 8,999 $7,150 / $CAD 9,499 $8,755 / $CAD 11,999

Upgrades come in the form of removable cartridges so that a Linn Specialist can carry out an

upgrade in a customer’s home quickly and simply. Selekt DSM is available in black finish.


Selekt DSM is available through Linn Specialists worldwide. To find out more, to book a listening session or aJend a launch event, visit the Linn website:

Orders can be placed immediately with delivery from October 2018. Linn network music player range simplifica<on

From 1st October 2018, every Linn network music player will come as standard with digital and analogue inputs. This means every new Linn network music player can have external sources

connected, from TVs to turntables, ensuring every last musical detail is preserved.The Linn network music player range now consists of:


Majik DSM

$2,999 / $CAD 4,249

Selekt DSM

$5,200 / $CAD 6,999

Selekt DSM with integrated amps

$6,825 / $CAD 8,999

Selekt DSM with Katalyst

$7,150/ $CAD 9,499


Selekt DSM with integrated amps and Katalyst

$8,755 / $CAD 11,999

Akurate DSM

$10,250 / $CAD 12,650

Klimax DSM

$23,380 / $CAD 25,720

The last order date for Linn DS network music players is 30th September 2018. Linn Contact

Andrena McBain – – +44 (0) 141 303 5777 About Linn

Linn designs and makes the world’s best music systems.
We have just one goal in mind: to bring you ever closer to the music you love, for you to feel every note and experience your music with a clarity and power unlike anything you’ve ever heard.
Every Linn system is precision engineered just outside Glasgow and signed with pride by the person who made it.
In a world of planned obsolescence, we do the opposite. Our hardware is modular, our soRware upgradeable, our eyes firmly on the future.
We believe that music makes life beJer, and we know that our systems make music sound beJer.


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Press Release – Basil Audio Presented Linn Katalyst DAC Technology at RMAF 2017


Basil to showcase Linn’s new Klimax 350 and Akudorik loudspeakers featuring its latest cutting edge digital-to-analogue technology – Katalyst 

And for the first time at a US audio show, Basil will host Linn’s most realistic movie experience ever with a fully Exakt Surround Sound system

LOS GATOS, Calif. , October 2nd 2017 — Basil Inc. today announced that it will be presenting an exciting range of Linn systems at the Rocky Mountain International Audio Fest 2017 in what promises to be the Scottish manufacturer’s strongest line-up in the show’s 14 year history.

In a variety of their highest performing systems, Basil will demonstrate the full range of Linn’s capabilities to give the finest musical and most immersive movie experiences possible.

Basil’s expert team will introduce Linn’s unique built-in technologies including Exakt, Space Optimisation and the latest Katalyst DAC Architecture. They’ll also demonstrate how an Exakt Surround Sound system allows family-friendly speaker placement due to Space Optimisation software and delivers the most natural sound thanks to linear phase for all loudspeakers.

“There’s a whole host of technologies at work in an Exakt Surround Sound system; Exakt technology removes phase and mode issues to guarantee the best sound, Space Optimisation allows you to put your speakers where you choose and now Katalyst delivers a deeper insight to your music and movies. We are pleased to partner with our US dealer Basil Audio to present Linn’s ground-breaking systems at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest this year” said Gilad Tiefenbrun, Managing Director of Linn Products.

Products on display in the Basil suite #1130:

System #1

Linn Klimax System featuring Klimax DSM, Klimax 350 loudspeakers and Linn Klimax LP12 turntable

Linn Klimax Exakt Surround System

System #2

Linn Akudorik speakers featuring Katalyst technology

Linn Akurate Exakt DSM

Linn Akurate LP12 turntable

System #3

Linn Akurate Exakt DSM

Linn 5 series 530 Exakt loudspeakers


Linn Kazoo server running on Mac OS X


Linn Kazoo app for iPhone and Android


Basil Inc. was formed to provide, install and support world class audio systems for music lovers and audio enthusiasts in the San Francisco Bay Area. Basil selects

audio components and systems from leading manufacturers and provides system solutions that are musically and aesthetically satisfying in home or office environments. The Basil team has extensive technical experience over decades designing complex analog and digital systems used in leading high tech systems and by semiconductor companies. The company was born from a close association with the key partners and a desire to demonstrate that  multi-room network streaming, musical appreciation, audio engineering discipline and social

interaction are not separate but together enrich our lives.

Based in Los Gatos, Calif., Basil services customers in Northern California and other regions in western US.

Basil and the Basil logo are trademarks of Basil Inc. All other brands, product names and marks are or may be trademarks or registered trademarks used to identify

products or services of their respective owners.

Visit: for further information about Basil.

Follow Basil Audio on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google


Twitter: @basilaudio

Instagram: basilaudio

Google: Basil Inc. Audio Systems

About Linn

Linn design and make the best music systems in the world. Based in Glasgow, Scotland and established since 1973, Linn manufacture everything in-house, from the electronics in their industry-leading technologies, to the loudspeakers found in homes around the world. The iconic Sondek LP12 turntable continues to set the standard for vinyl playback and the latest digital stream players out-perform any CD or network music player available.

Linn systems are sold through a global network of independent specialist retailers who also share Linn’s passion for enriching people’s lives through music. Linn were awarded a Royal Warrant as suppliers of entertainment systems to the Royal Household, and received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation in 2012.

Visit: for further information about Linn and its products.

Follow Linn on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates.


Basil Inc. Press Contact:

Deondra Bicknell, 408-647-5407

Linn Press Contact:

Andrena McBain