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As things stand now you have an audio presentation that inhabits the near middle ground sound between digital and vacuum tube performance. If your preference lends itself to the smallest details, exactly like you would listening to a very fine harpsichord performance, then make this your endpoint. If at all possible you must find and audition the Canor AI 2.10

Enjoy the Music 

Ron Nagle | March 2021

Canor AI 2.1

Hybrid Integrated Amplifier


2x 100 W / 8 Ω

2x 150 W / 4 Ω



Product Features


Hybrid integrated amplifier with an output power of 2x 150 W / 4 Ω

Preamplifier stage consists of a pair of precisely selected 6922 tubes

Tube preamplifier on the input fitted with a precise relay attenuator

PCB’s utilize our premium CMT ™ technology

Perfect channel separation via relay attenuator blocks for each channel

Power amplifier in class D, powered by a filtered and tuned linear power supply

Absolute selection and tubes matching with above-average parameters

XLR inputs with a strictly symmetrical signal up to the power amplifier


Power Output
2 x 100W 8 Ω

2 x 150W 4 Ω

Input Sensitivity

400 mV / 150 W / 1 kHz 
Frequency Range
20 – 20 000Hz ±0,53dB / 5 W 
Input Impedance
30 Kohm


<0,02% / 1 kHz, 5 W

Signal to Noise Ratio

> 95 dB


4 x RCA

2 x XLR

Tube Complement

2 x 6922


435 x 120 x 405 mm


17 kg

Canor AI 2.1Black 2.jpg
Canor Audio AI 2.1 Open Inside View 2.jpg
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Canor AI 2.2 shown above with the Canor CD 2.1 CDP / DAC ..perfect pair !

Canor Audio AI 2.1 & CD 2.1 Stack_ml_resize_x2.jpg

What they say ...



Enjoy the Music

Ron Nagle | March 2021


Design Features

Beyond doubt, the Canor people have an eye for sleek and modern industrial design. The uncluttered face projects a clear clean sense of functionality. The Canor AI 2.10 integrated amplifier weighs 33 pounds. The top cover is a "U" shaped slipcase measuring 17" wide by 15" deep and 4.5" high. The rear panel has six component inputs; four are stereo pairs of RCA jacks and two are left / right channel XLR inputs. At the left rear are four speaker binding posts. And at the right side are the main power switch and a IEC-style power cord receptacle with a fuse holder.


The review sample I asked for has a silver matte finished aluminum faceplate. Canor's AI 2.10 faceplate has a horizontal translucent strip 1.25" wide of black acrylic plastic that covers the center of the panel. Behind that is a dim-able 0.75" yellow-colored dot-matrix digital display spelling out the input selection and the volume setting in decibels. To the left of that are six small push buttons. All six of them select rear panel inputs. Four stereo sets of RCA inputs and two sets of XLR component input connections.


At the left side of the volume control knob are two additional small pushbuttons labeled Mute and Dimm for the dot matrix display.  It would be easier if the small front panel buttons were a light color and could be seen in dim light.  At the middle of the front faceplate is a 1.5" wide volume control knob. This is specifically a digital encoding control that has no upper or lower mechanical stops. The amplifier will remember the last setting you used when you turned the amplifier off. But my curiosity initially came about with the claim that this is a Hybrid Amplifier. Later on, I found out it is a hybrid amplifier in two different ways.


"A Hybrid ... but is it really Class D" 

The overall circuit design is solid-state but it is used in combination with two 6922 vacuum tubes at the input stage. Another Hybrid design aspect is that it uses a Hypex derived switching power supply. Note: The first switching amplifier was invented in 1955 by Alec Reeves. Generically the switching power supply is popularly mistakenly referred to as a Class D amplifier. The ‘D' designation however does not refer to its' class of operation.

The Canor A 2.10 power supply is combined with a conventional linear power supply. So it contains both a digital switching power supply and a conventional linear power supply. The amplifier power is rated at 150 Wpc but it is only specified into 4 Ohms, not at the usual 8 Ohm specification. As you probably know this class of switching amplifiers was first used primarily for military and industrial applications.


The problem was the switching / sampling / carrier networks is they were very noisy. Some might even generate electrical noise approaching radio frequencies. Some switching frequencies are measured in pico and nano seconds.  I can recall that at the advent of the very first CD players some writers advised that they be kept away from sensitive components i.e: tape heads. However, over a span of many years switching amplifiers have been greatly improved. It is clear that there are advantages and disadvantages inherent in both power supply implementations and the trick is to eliminate all the bad stuff. Reading through the company literature raises a question, why would Canor - and how did Canor - combine two very different types of power supplies. I needed some clarity: so I sent off an e-mail inquiry to the chief design engineer at Canor asking for more information about this power supply design. This is his reply:


"We have many years of experience with Hypex digital, and when we tried to achieve the best possible sound properties, we found out that it sounds better when powered by a linear source instead of the standard switching power supply. There are also benefits of using additional LC filters, with very low impedance, for the greatest possible suppression of the carrier frequency "D" class of the amplifier." Note: L and C are symbols that are used in electronics to represent an L for inductance and the letter C to represent capacitance. These two elements L&C combined are called Tank Filters.

Non-ringing Circuit Boards

Canor does something to their circuit boards I had never heard of. First, understand they make their circuit boards in-house. When they make them they mill out the lands between the circuit traces. What you will see is the copper lines connecting the components soldered on the PCB with holes and slots drilled through the spaces between them.


Curious. I asked the designer and CEO of Merrill Audio (A fellow member of the New York Audio Society) why would you need to do something like that? He answered that at high frequencies even glass PCBs can become dielectric and can induce ringing.


Plugging it in
Connecting the AI 2.10 to my reference system was very easy, almost brainlessly easy. The main power switch is located on the back panel. Most of the time you will use the remote control to turn the amplifier on/off and to adjust the volume and input. The aluminum remote is a very attractive design matching the amplifier's form factor. However, there are some controls meant for a Canor CD player that I do not have. There is a small control button labeled amplifier to power the amplifier on/off and a large duplicate button for a CD player's power.


Canor tells us: "The AI 2.10 amplifier is an internally balanced design and will sound best if you use balanced XLR input cables." As a matter of fact, I did use both unbalanced RCA connections and balanced XLR cables for this audition. Since there are two 6922 triodes at the input of the amplifier it has a built-in 45-second warm-up delay when you first turn it on.


Initially, I  powered on the amplifier just to be certain it was working properly. At the very first it sounded anemic and flat. However, I know you cannot make any judgments cold and just out of the box. Especially with the inclusion of amplifier vacuum tubes. Like many new high-end audio units, it will need some time to break in. Canor suggests a minimum of 30 hours.



​Enjoy the Music

Ron Nagle | March 2021


The Ear Test
After a suggested 30 hours of burn in the amplifier performed much better. The sound gained a bit more harmonic richness. In addition, the bass, midrange, and treble sounded more blended and balanced as if the spectrum of frequencies spoke with the same emphasis.

My audition will center on two of my reference CD's and one vinyl recording. All of these recordings are of very high quality. The first is Nils Lofgren Acoustic Live. The full impact of this performance can only be realized when played through a dead quiet audio amplifier.


At 30 plus hours of playing there was a slight hard edginess to higher frequencies. But with this particular recording, that same quality was like a laser making the performance more defined. The plucked guitar strings of Nils Lofgren had a greater sense of the transient impact that made this performance sound more exciting. But this recording is titled Acoustic Live so there should be a little more resonant timbral overtones from the wooden body of the guitar. For a thorough comparison, I purchased the same Nils Lofgren performance on a vinyl recording.


I was able to match a specific CD track to the same vinyl track so I was able to switch back and forth between the two. And I know what you are going to say: Of course you are going to hear a difference between two very different sources. Understand what I want to explore is just how well the Canor AI 2.10 can resolve the different information present on these recordings. That is exactly what happened. The vinyl performance allowed the Canor to greatly expand the space between the speakers just as expected. The Canor amplifier told the truth and nothing but the truth. Moving right along. If you want to explore the nuance of the sound of any acoustic instrument I just happen to have the perfect recorded performance.


Bottom Line
At the end of any audio component review, such as the Canor AI 2.10 hybrid stereo integrated amplifier as described here, there's a decision point. It is a choice you must make like a sommelier of fine wine, what is ultimately selected comes down to your personal taste. And of course, the same thing applies when it comes to audio system matching. You might prefer another component especially if you listen to operatic works.


As things stand now you have an audio presentation that inhabits the near middle ground sound between digital and vacuum tube performance. If your preference lends itself to the smallest details, exactly like you would listening to a very fine harpsichord performance, then make this your endpoint. If at all possible you must find and audition the Canor AI 2.10

Audiophile FR

Lionel Schmitt | December 2022


"An innate sense of Melody"

The CANOR IA 2.10 amplifier is not an amplifier like the others.

For my part, it is even poles apart from what the competition offers in this product category. It has its own character, resulting from the blend of topologies: Tubes and a non-traditional implementation of Class D power.


With a soft and warm temperament, this amplifier is generous in terms of spatialization, without going overboard. To tell the truth, its "singularity" is based on the affective aspect that we bring, in its company, to the music. Mainly melodious, it presents a pleasant restitution that you have to learn to discover. It will suit all those looking for a musicality with bright and shimmering colors.

L | Lite

Roman Maier | May 2020


"Balance ... Power ... Control"

Turning the volume control hard to the right – which, by the way, runs smoothly and leaves a really good haptic impression – doesn't seem to demand anything special from the AI ​​2.10. Yes, it gets significantly louder, but the sound character does not change. Everything gets evenly louder here, without certain parts of the music experiencing a special emphasis, or a corresponding neglect. Right ... OK ... that's what you should expect. Unfortunately, this "talent" is actually only available with better amplifiers. The AI ​​2.10 is clearly one.


What else I noticed : The Canor rolls up its sleeves and reaches down properly into the lower frequency ranges. However, the bass generated in this way never stands out from its musical environment. That's a good thing, because no matter how powerful the bass reproduction may be, it can also be annoying if it's constantly in the foreground. Fortunately, that's not the case here.


Instead of being highlighted by exaggerated bass inserts, AI 2.10 and CD 2.10 deliver a consistently balanced sound. Balanced without any hint of boredom but balanced, structured and with amazing power.

The music literally floats in space and is evenly distributed there. This "egalitarian"l treatment of all music parts may seem reserved at first, but it definitely benefits long-term suitability.


Without anticipating too much : Even after my intensive two-hour music session, I have neither the desire for a break, nor the need to turn down the volume. By the way : For my listening test, I listened to the Canor combo with speakers from the brands Seta Audio, KEF and Magnat, among others. The setup retained the described sound character in every constellation.


The Fine Side

The Who's cover of Friend 'n Fellow's "Light My Fire" slows things down a bit. A rather gentle song, sensitively interpreted by Constanze Friend and minimally instrumented with just one guitar. Even if the musical scope is reduced to just two artists here, the Canor pair directly proves its diversity and shows what you can expect from a sophisticated hi-fi setup right away. The rather fine song goes straight into my soul with its grooving charm. Within a few seconds I was experiencing a performance that I could hardly escape. Not a trace of artificial sensationalism, which is otherwise often served up by comparatively compact hi-fi setups. Instead, my two guests in this test proved that they can do more than just bang on the drum.

Gentle Urgency

But back to the sound : Even if the selected file is "only" played at 48 kilohertz, the musical structures are immediately distinguishable. The introductory intro comes up with a really nice tight, powerful and haunting bass. It even makes itself felt a bit in the stomach area, which then triggers a renewed desire to increase the volume level. But I refrained from this, because now Fagen is also getting on board. His unmistakable voice immediately adapts perfectly to the accompanying instrumentation. Everything sounds so present and authentic, but never intrusive. I wouldn't go so far as to say that I feel like I'm sitting in the middle of the recording studio. But it certainly doesn't sound like a digital preserve either.

Obviously, this is where the tubes comes into play.

Spatial Imaging

Which brings me to the next point : spatial imaging. The musical stage that is now created stretches completely between the loudspeakers. To be more precise, it stretches a little bit behind them, and also juts out a bit in depth. Here it fully illuminates the musical events, so that no detail goes unheard. I experienced this effect in my next test sequence. This time with Grace Jones and "Use Me" in a sample rate of 96 kilohertz. In this title, too, all the instruments are neatly staggered and yet placed on the acoustic stage as a coherent whole, as a unit. And as before, none of the instruments, or the voice of the Jamaican artist, is preferred or suppressed. What I also really like is the correctness of the musical content. Everything seems "right -sized".


True to Size

What I mean by that : Instruments are often presented acoustically much larger than they really are. For example, such “gimmicky effects” can quickly make guitars more attractive. This can even benefit the character of the song in the short term. But if you then listen carefully, you quickly realize that instruments are often presented in a spatially oversized manner. Where else can you find a two meter long guitar?


However, this unwanted effect is expressly not in evidence here. The music has a certain presence. Space, instrumentation and voice are only emphasized if this is what the artist wants in the mix. This in turn is a very good basis for enjoying music sessions lasting several hours and for experiencing details, that you didn't know from your favorite songs before. This is by no means possible with every stereo system, but is definitely the case with the Canor combo.


At first glance, the Canor combination consisting of AI 2.10 and CD 2.10 may look like a classic hi-fi system. In fact, the excellently processed duo is much more. The amp proves to be an excellent analog specialist that plays silky smooth, but at the same time shows a lot of temperament. The CD 2.10 is an excellent CD player, but also a sophisticated DAC that processes music files with a sampling rate of up to 768 kilohertz.


The result is a setup that asserts itself as a "specialist" in both the analogue and digital worlds, and is at the very top of its price range in terms of sound. If you are looking for a really good-sounding and slightly differently styled high-end system, one that is distinct from the mainstream, you should definitely take a look at this combo - and above all, listen to it.

 Take a listen ...

Canor Audio AI 2.1


In very good company with

 AS Virtuoso S speaker

$ 22,500


 Japanese Roots

Tekedake / John Kaizan Neptune 

Video courtesy of Nikos @ Chameleon Audio / Greece

Canor Audio AI 2.1


In very good company with

 AS Virtuoso S speaker

$ 22,500


 To Be

Gentle Giants / Slowfox 

Video courtesy of Nikos @ Chameleon Audio / Greece

Canor Audio AI 2.1


In very good company with

 AS Figaro B speaker

$ 4,250 - with stands 


 For Luis

Bass Room / Nenad Vasilic 

Video courtesy of Nikos @ Chameleon Audio / Greece

Canor Audio AI 2.1


In very good company with

 AS Ouverture 0204F speaker

$ 4,750


 For Luis

Bass Room / Nenad Vasilic 

Video courtesy of Nikos @ Chameleon Audio / Greece

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