Back for an encore

The Acute CD player is reborn. When designing the new EAR Acute Classic, Audio Designer Tim de Paravicini took inspiration from the original EAR Acute. Building on its virtues, his all-new design was built from the ground up to provide an improved listening experience. An elegant design and EAR’s extensive knowledge, amassed over a thirty-year history, has culminated in the Acute Classic.

High Resolution CD Player

The new classic

With sleek modern styling and more than a nod to classic quality, the EAR Acute Classic is built to last. Its details are lavished by a hand-polished mirror chrome finish, forming the basis of a timeless design. Its aesthetic is married to leading digital and analogue technology, creating a visual and audible feast for the senses.

The display and power light both emit a luxurious warm hue, providing subtle cues to the glowing valves within. The large volume knob is also a statement of the product’s analogue nature, emphasising the simplicity of interaction. This is honoured by the Acute’s interface, which makes it even more intuitive to experience your digital media.

CD Player Chrome Front
Grado Headphones PS1000 Black

Compact disc, big sound

Compact Discs are the home for all things audio. Their abundance and variety make them the most readily available source of high fidelity music. The Acute Classic masters the most compelling sound akin to analogue sources. It’s clear and smooth characteristic caters for vinyl advocates but without the hassles. You will want to re-listen to your collection in its true fidelity.

The intuitive nature of CDs makes them arguably the most simple to use of all audio media. It is no wonder how they have become familiar to so many generations. With three decades of CD production and many more to come, we created a CD player that should be a fundamental component of any Hi-Fi setup.

Compact Disc Photo
Luxury Hifi system

Digital music reimagined

The Acute Classic’s abilities are not limited to CDs thanks to its built-in DAC. Unphased by even the most demanding formats, the Acute has the ability to run 192KHz 24bit sources. Connectivity is covered by the gold standards of digital inputs. Supporting USB, Optical and Coaxial S/PDIF makes it adept for dealing with your future digital audio needs. DACs have become a necessity for the playback of high-quality digital music. While your source of digital music may be forever changing, you can rest assured your Acute will still be capable of processing your future digital content. It’s the one investment in digital worth having.

Mac USB Audio

The defining duo

The use of two ECC88 valves help form the basis of the sound signature for which EAR has become renowned. It is a configuration that shone in the Acute 3 and now finds itself in the Acute Classic. The layout has been enhanced by borrowing the winning formula of the high-performance EAR Dac 4. Tim de Paravicini further refined the design to match the increasing capabilities of digital audio but with adherence to analogue purity that epitomises high-end audio.

EAR Two ECC83 Valves

The merit of mass

The acute classic features two dedicated output transformers, whose construction give an exceptional signal to noise ratio. Their bespoke design was conceived specifically for audio. They are built by hand in Cambridgeshire to EAR’s exacting standards. The circuitry was then developed in tandem to ensure they work harmoniously with the valves. This gives rise to the composed sound that has become synonymous with EAR products.

CD Transformer Output

The perfect mix
Vinyl quality sound, digital convenience

The digital circuitry at its heart has been designed to optimise high-resolution digital media. Each step has been carefully considered from receiving digital information, to its conversion to analogue. The digital processing uses a bespoke circuit and signal transformers to boost the low levels created by the Wolfson WM8741 DAC, whilst minimising noise and distortion. The unique design enables crisp audio without the harshness typically experienced with digital sources.

USB digital input


Two PCC88 (6DJ8) or ECC88 (7DJ8)

Audio Playback

Audio Formats supported:

CD 44.1 kHz, 16 bit PCM

SPDIF upto 192 KHz, 24 bit PCM

Toslink upto 96 KHz, 24 bit PCM

USB 2.0 (PC/MAC) 44.1K - 192 KHz,

16 - 24 bit PCM


One USB Input (PC and MAC)

One SPDIF Input (RCA)

One SPDIF Input (Toslink)

One Stereo Line Output 5V (RCA)

One Stereo Balanced Output 5V (XLR)

One Headphone Output (1/4”) 16-100 Ω


Total Harmonic Distortion 0.5%

@ 5 Volts 20Hz - 20Khz

Signal to Noise 95db 40KHz Bandwidth

Dimensions & Weight

Weight: 8.00kg (17.7lb)

Width: 435mm (17.2”)

Depth: 285mm (11.2”)

Height: 65mm (2.7”)


Power Consumption: 30 watts

240 volt / 110 Volt / 100 Volt

(depending on model)

Acute Classic Rear Connections