As many of you already know, I was one of the three founders of Balanced Audio Technology in 1995. Thus, it's easy to assume that I could be biased regarding the judgement of BAT's products. Nonetheless, I can honestly attest that the three of us who owned and drove the company for the first seventeen years of its existence were also very critical when it came to evaluating our own products. As new models were developed, we compared them to other brands' reference products. We were always hyper-critical of our own products, wanting them to exceed the performance, build quality and value of anything on the market! Thus, when we replaced one model with another in its respective category, it had to be worth the effort - in performance and value. That attitude and dedication to quality has been consistent at BAT. I left the company in 2017, mostly for health reasons, while Steve and Victor have stayed the course. Jim Davis, a Chicago-based entrepreneur, bought BAT in 2012, and has maintained the company's ethos and goals of creating world reference products throughout the eight years of his ownership.
A couple of years ago, Victor began working on new REX products, the first of which to be released was the REX DAC. The REX DAC is an assault on the state-of-the-art, and now incorporates the styling changes that have been created for the REX 3 models - the REX 3 Line-stage and REX 3 Power amplifier. I've had the privilege of having the REX 3 pre and power here at Glenn Poor's for almost a month now in anticipation of featuring them in a system with Tannoy's GRF loudspeakers, Playback Designs "Dream" digital, the Technics SL-1000 turntable, and Kubala/Sosna cabling at the upcoming (August) AXPONA Show. Prior to the arrival of the REX 3 components, I'd been breaking in the Tannoys with my "vintage" REX pre and REX 2 power amp, while occasionally switching in the big BAT VK-655SE mono-blocks, thinking that could help lessen the break-in time for the big Tannoys. Then came REX 3!
As is always the case with brand new, out of the box BAT products, the REX 3 units were a bit "tight" at first. "Dynamic", "extended", "smooth, yet revealing". They checked all the boxes. As the days passed, though, every aspect of their performance simply just got better! Everything, and I mean everything, I am now hearing is more real! The feeling is similar to being on stage, performing a song that you've sung dozens of times before, but all of a sudden this time you understand its meaning. It's not easy to put into words the subtle improvements I've been hearing in familiar recordings I've played through the REX 3 system. It's really a feeling that defies simple explanation. I'm just getting closer to the essence of the original performance. Like imagining musical nirvana. Such a cool feeling..............