Vitus RI-100 Integrated Amplifier (discontinued)

The RI100 was discontinued in the spring of 2018 and replaced by the RI-101

During it’s lifetime the RI-100 was the most popular Vitus product from the Audio Therapy portfolio, it never failed to impress. It offers a genuine slice of serious high end performance and at £9900 it punches massively above both it’s weight and price point. Take any other brand of amplification at easily double the value and I would confidently put a RI-100 against it, in pure musicality terms it’s an absolute trailblazer of a product.

It offers 300 watts per channel and is massively powerful and dynamic, it has endless levels of grip and control yet at the same time is incredibly delicate and poised. It paints a huge soundstage with masses of texture and air, yet it is impressively intimate when required. It will quite happily sit on the back of a serious pair of demanding loudspeakers (speakers costing 3 or 4 times the price of the RI-100 for instance) and just gets on with it job with no fuss whatsoever.

It boogies with the best of them, from Leonard Cohen to the Arctic Monkeys to Charles Minghus, whatever you throw at it gets thrown back right at you in one of the most musical and addictive performances you’ll ever hear for the money (and then some!).

There is an optional internal DAC board for £2200 and when you consider there is no case and power supply to go with it obviously and for the money it represents superb value for money. There are 4 inputs on the board (Coaxial, Optical, XLR and USB – the USB input supports up to DSD128). Connect a Melco N1ZH/2 via USB and you’ve a formiddale 2 box system that will comfortably outperform other things costings a lot more money.

Before you go out and hear a pre-amp, power amp and power supply from a well known UK brand who shall remainly Naimless do yourself a favour and take a proper listen to the RI-100, I’m confident it will transform the way you listen to music forever. You could spend a lot more money on something and end up with a system that isn’t as musical, enjoyable and rewarding to listen to as an RI-100. I know a lot of people have a perceived value issue with one box costing nearly £10,000, words to the effect of ‘surely for that sort of money you should have separates’ is a common theme. Just listen to it! Put it up against another integrated or a pre/power or even a pre and a pair of mono amplifiers, once you have heard the RI-100 do it’s thing…..

It can easily be partnered with other components costing way past the price of the RI-100 and it just gets on with delivering real music, it never feels out of place or out of its depth. I recently installed a Vitus SCD-025 CD Player / DAC costing £17,500 in a system which already had an RI-100 in it and the amp just took it in it’s stride.

As you can see from the above image connectivity is more than most people will ever need. It has 3 XLR inputs, 2 RCA inputs and XLR outputs. The speaker outputs will happily accept spades or traditional 4mm banana or Z plugs. You can see the blanking plates for the add in cards below as well. The RI-100 can be configured to work with a home cinema system and there are input trims for those that require them.

It comes with a standed UK IEC power cable, but every single customer who has bought an RI-100 has ended up using it with an Entreq Challenger 3V power cable, there’s an incredible synergy between the 2 of them and once you’ve heard what it does to the amplifier you’ll never use the stock cable or any other for that matter. It adds a level of emotion and expression to the performance which is genuinely captivating to listen to.

Since its launch the RI-100 has been rather well received by the hi-fi press across the world, here is a selection of some of the awards and accolades it has received since it was released.

In the more reading section below there are links to numerous reviews, the user manual and a product datasheet with full specification.

Selection of Review Quotes

“It provides some of the most neutral, detailed, and transparent sound that I have heard in my listening room. The RI-100 is lightning-quick. There is no edge or whiteness along for the ride as with many solid state designs. Timbre, pitch, and tone are spot on. There is no romance—all artificial harmonics are stripped away, and you are left with the real thing”

“Did I mention that bass performance is as good as it gets? The RI-100 can handle the most demanding low frequencies with an iron grip, and the Q7s are the perfect vehicle to prove it. At 88 pounds, 300 watts per channel into 8 ohms, and 600 watts per channel into 4 ohms, the RI-100 is a beast and has power to burn. Texture and slam is the best. Let me be clear, the sound is not lean! If you love a certain amount of warmth and additional bloom to your bass, look elsewhere. No overhang, no mid bass hump—just a vivid articulate presentation that will make you believe”

“Highs and mids are wonderfully fleshed out without excessive bite or grain. Strings, woodwinds, and female vocals are always a tough challenge. I have never heard better on vinyl, SACDs, and 192 files. Even well recorded CDs can raise the hair on the back of your neck as Yo Yo Ma, John Coltrane, or Sarah Vaughn work their way into a frenzy. Like no other amplifier I have experienced, piano recordings finally have the correct weight, timbre, and inner density”

“Soundstage is vast and extensive beyond the speakers when the music calls for it. You will not find any manipulation or false dimensions as you listen deep into the recording venue. Imaging is consistently superb and almost holographic with the very best recordings. You don’t have to lean into the music to see and hear these variables, just sit back and absorb”

Robert Youman, Postivie Feedback Review

“As powerful as the RI-100 is , brute force is not the sonic element that stands out – at least not all the time. From day one, what struck home was the lack of an electronic signature throughout the frequency spectrum. There was no glaze smudging transients, or any dry powdery whiteness over the treble. The RI-100 was supernaturally quiet. I’d describe its character as relaxed but ready”

 – The Absolute Sound Review

More Reading

Vitus RI-100 Datasheet

Vitus RI-100 User Manual

The Absolute Sound – Vitus RI-100 Review

EsotericaVitus RI-100 Review

Stereo TimesVitus RI-100 Review

Positive Feedback – Vitus RI-100 Review

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