CAT JL5 LE (Limited Edition) with optional XLR and
(((HUGE PRICE DROP))): $10,995
10/10. Perfect condition. White glove treatment. Less than 100 hours of use. Original owner. Purchased 4/2019 direct from CAT. LE upgrade introduced 2019, significant
improvement over standard version. Special factory upgrade to include both XLR and RCA inputs. Complete with packaging, power cord, manual. CAT is raising 2020 pricing significantly, FYI. I am selling due to purchasing a new home and will be relocating over the coming months...
MY TAKE: You know the question; “What system would you choose if you were banished to a desert island, with no possibility of changing anything.” For me, that system would begin with Convergent Audio Technology electronics. C.A.T. has consistently made class-leading tube electronics that many feel have no peer in the industry, and I can’t argue with that. My experience has been that the C.A.T. gear sounds great - regardless of the system - and their amplifiers drive difficult loads like no other tube amps I’ve encountered. – Galen Carol
Design Philosophy -
Philosophy is the most important aspect of any design. CAT’s philosophy is to design our products to neither add to, nor detract from, the music. We never attempt to cover up a design problem with another problem, nor do we introduce a supposedly complementary problem to “synergize” with it. Two wrongs do not make a right. Only the eradication of the problem is correct.
The JL5 was designed to bring the famous CAT quality into a smaller more convenient chassis and make tube biasing much easier. The JL5 even uses the same driver tube technology as THE STATEMENT amplifier. This driver is specifically optimized for the high current KT120 tube, but also yields superior results with the venerable 6550/KT88 tube. The new JL5, delivers the famous “drive anything” sound of its bigger brothers, in fact it’s fully competitive with the older 6550 version of the more expensive JL2 in that regard, and it sounds even better!
With triode purity, transparency, and vibrancy that surpasses even the most refined low power single ended triode amplifiers combined with brute force current delivery exceeding all other tube amps, the JL5 is an amplifier which will force you to reevaluate your reference standards.
Power Supply –
- Power transformer is encased in a separate nickel plated steel housing to contain the magnetic field.
- Isolation transformer eliminates entry of AC power line noise into the amp, yielding greater benefits than add-on conditioners without any of their sonic drawbacks or expense.
- Slow filament power-up extends tube life greatly. Quadruple cascaded audio power supply uses time compensated zero feedback MOSFETS and vacuum tubes to deliver unequaled dynamic contrast, resolution and sound stage realism.
- Pure Triode audio circuitry produces tonally natural music by eliminating the partition noise inherent in pentode designs and the resulting noise intermodulation (”grain”).
- Low feedback (about 7dB) properly compensated design eliminates the tonal hardness of high feedback and/or improperly compensated designs while yielding more consistent sound quality.
- Ultra-wide open loop in-circuit bandwidth of the output transformer enables operation of the amp’s closed loop response entirely within the open loop response, eliminating any requirement to use high feedback to force the output stage to perform beyond its natural capability.
- Massive 15lb. output transformers allow the magnetics to operate at maximum linearity while still maintaining extremely low bass capability.
- Unprecedented stability into capacitive loads.
- Fantastic for driving even the most difficult electrostatic speakers.
Hi-Fi and Records (Germany) – “When Bern Bold dropped off the test amp he was raving about the JL-5. Okay, ready for the acid test, back to Mark Knopfler’s album, Tracker. Among the bonus tracks of this Deluxe Edition is gem called “Heart of Oak,” a plain song featuring the master solo, just vocals and guitar – an amp cannot score with bass and power here. With the new C.A.T. driving the YG Hailey 1.2, this sound so authentic and three-dimensional, so full of atmosphere, that it makes your hair stand on end. The JL-5 is indeed at home in the midrange – it offers the charm of valves plus it offers full-bodied , affectionate and at the same time clean as well.
“Following in the best of C.A.T. tradition, the JL-5 is also able to convince in the bass. Delivering control and punch.
“Its overall qualities make the JL-5 without any doubt the best valve amp I’ve ever heard. It merges power with charm, sounds relaxed and yet sovereign, and it brings a fascinating valve liquidity into play.” – Wilfreid Kress
Hi-Fi and Records (Germany) - Editor's Choice
"Many believe that Convergent amplifiers are the best in the World. Those who hear them will understand why." – Joachim Pieffer
Black Path Edition Features –
- Amorphous Alloy core has less than 1/12 the hysteresis of conventional grain oriented silicon steel used by the competition, yielding a level of transparency no other tube manufacturer can match.
- Low loss aerospace circuit board material.
- Legendary Black Gate power supply capacitors. Revolutionary BLACK PATH audio capacitors.
Chassis Features -
- Beautiful Golden Ratio proportions.
- Mirror polished stainless steel maintains luster and brilliance with minimal care.
- Heavy steel chassis for tremendous strength and the elimination of low frequency vibration, yielding incredible bass solidity and rock solid imaging.
- Constrained damping layer on top plate silences vibration before it can be converted to electromechanical noise.
- Output transformers are enclosed within their own magnetically isolated housing which is lined with Birch plywood - one of the most musical woods.
- Mechanical isolation from floor vibration provided by anti-resonance viscoelastic feet.
Convenience Features –
- Fully auto-biasing. Just plug in CAT supplied tubes and play.
- OptiBias(TM) compensates for power line fluctuations up to 10% either way. Tubes always sound their best!
- Tube life indicator. Green indicates the tubes are still good. Red indicates time to replace.
- Tubes operated at only 1/4 rated power for very long life expectancy.
- Power: 120 Watts into 4 or 8 ohms, 1%THD
- THD @ 1 Watt 0.01%
- Energy Storage: 1200 Joules
- Bandwidth: 1 Hz to 70 kHz (+0, -3dB)
- Damping Factor: >10 , across entire audio band
- Gain: 27dB (8 ohms), 24dB (4 ohms)
- Input Impedance: 100K ohms
- Sensitivity: 1.41V AC for full power
- Noise: 116 dB below full power
- Power Bandwidth: 20 Hz to 30 kHz
- Tube Compliment: 4 x 6922/6DJ8 driver and PS
- 8x KT120 power, triode mode
- Dimensions: 20” x 12.4” x 7.8” (L:W:H)
- 50cm x 31cm x 20cm
- Weight: 88 lbs. (40kg)
Flawless feedback buyers only. USA sale only. Transaction and shipping fees are buyer’s responsibility. See my feedback and buy with confidence.