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Marantz PM-KI Pearl Integrated Amplifier Review Print E-mail
Wednesday, 16 December 2009
Article Index
Marantz PM-KI Pearl Integrated Amplifier Review
Listening Session
Final Thoughts

One of my goals as reviewer is to introduce folks to gear and music, perhaps something brand new, that will make their leisure time way better. So, let me share a piece of music from a band called Teaze and their album One Night Stands that few outside of Teaze's homeland of Canada have even heard. Teaze had a strong run around Toronto in the late 1970s and early '80s but were truly a band ahead of their time. They had a sound that would have blown people away in 1984, but in 1978 punk rock and disco had the public's attention. Lead vocalist Brian Danter's range is frightening, and I'll throw out the cut “Heartless World” as the greatest unheard power ballad (in the truest sense of “power”) ever. Danter hits a note some 5 minutes in that still astounds me. That intense high was thrown at me with a punch that George Foreman would respect.

Lastly, to spotlight not only this amp's engaging sound but its suave phono stage, I'll call out my favorite Tony Bennett album, the 1965 travel-themed If I Ruled The World: Songs For The Jet Set. Here, Bennett took “Fly Me To The Moon (In Other Words)” and turned it into a late-night lover's last call forever and sent “How Insensitive” into eternal bossa-nova bliss. Those are just two highlights from a record that upon revisiting says, “Yes, Bennett did rule the world,” if only more were listening. Well, listen now and listen good – you'll have no other choice – and hear the opening aeronautic sweep of “Song Of The Jet” like never before.

Marantz KI Pearl Angled View
Final Thoughts

After listening to the Pearl amplifier and SA-KI SACD/CD player as a team I can't imagine separating them. My guess is that the 500 lucky purchasers of one Pearl will also want the other. Ken Ishiwata may not be coming to your house for dinner, but he'll make sure the music sounds good for you and your friends. And why wouldn't you share? As Ishiwata rightly confirms, “Music is the highest form of art... there is no other art that can touch your heart like music.” This amp touched and stole my heart, not by its looks, but from the inside out and how it made me feel.  I'm guessing it will do the same for you.

System Setup

Marantz PM-KI Pearl Integrated Amplifier
Marantz SA-KI Pearl SACD/CD Player
Marantz TT-15S1 Turntable with ClearaudioVirtuoso Wood Moving Magnetic Cartridge
Klipsch WF-34 Loudspeakers
RS Audio Cables Illume Silver Interconnects (1 meter)
RS Audio Cables Illume Silver Loudspeaker Cables (8 ft)
RS Audio Cables Kevlar Starchord Power Cable (6 ft)

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