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Accuphase C-260

Amongst the Accuphase preamplifiers the Accuphase C-260 deserves honorable mention for its versatility and voicing.

Comparing the C260 to many other units, like the C-200, C-220, C-280L, C-222 and the C-245 one may find that the C-260 is the nicest of these products in many ways. It is not the most detailed - that would have to be the C-245. It is also not the most refined - that would clearly be the C-280L. The most honest - that would be the C-200. No, the C-260 is special because is strikes a really nice balance between all of these traits.

The C-260 is also extremely versatile - clearly the most versatile of the mentioned lot. It has all of the inputs and outputs on the back that are mandatory for the Accuphase pre-amplifier products of its time, including plenty of XLR connections, and a total of three regulated outputs. However, it also has that extra set of RCA inputs and outputs hidden under the front lid that Accuphase has traditionally maintained throughout their classic C-200 family of pre-amps, of which the C-260 must really be considered the final iteration. None of the C-250, C-265, C-245, C-2000 that followed after have these additional features. Finally, the C-260 probably has the most comprehensive set of tone controls of any Accuphase pre-amp ever; we are basically talking about a full voicing equaliser of the very finest kind.

Although old, C-260 has the benefit over, e.g., the C-280 series of pre-amp that it does not get quite as hot and most units will still be in quite good shape. Not that the C-280 series will not, necessarily, be, but in my experience one should replace at least the local power-supply caps in each of the modules on those as they are quite exposed to heat.

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