I have been wanting to put together this Luxman L-507uXII and L-509X for a while now, but I have never managed to get my hands on a Luxman L-507uXII in order to do so. Thankfully a friend of mine managed to get a great deal on one of these and I was able to play around with it for a bit at his house and I thought I would compare it to the Luxman L-509X which I had the pleasure to test out earlier in the year. These are two very high-end amplifiers and to be honest with you there is no way in hell I could justify dropping this kind of money on an amplifier, however, I do get a kick out of being to try these things out… even if I do have to give them back in the end.
The first round in our Luxman L-507uXII and L-509X is a real eye opener as these are two very, very expensive products. I have had cars that come nowhere near close to the price tags we are talking about here!
You are easily looking at the better part of $10,000 if you were to buy this new from a dealer! I have seen these go anywhere from 6 to 10 grand online so the price for this amplifier seems to be all over the place. I did find that eBay is actually your best bet as you can find the Luxman L-507uXII for a more “reasonable” kind of price on there. I have found some that are in Japan that cost closer to three thousand dollars. Granted, you will have international shipping on top of that, but it could still work out a bit cheaper than buying one from a dealer in the USA.
If you want to buy a brand-new Luxman L-509X you are looking at $9,995,99! Pretty much ten grand, the price here and the price of the other one are very similar if you were to buy them new, I think that does give this one an edge as it is newer. However, there are not as many good deals on eBay for this one. You are looking at the 7 to 8 grand range on eBay and most of them tend to be from Japan.
The Verdict: These are both super expensive, but I have to give this round to the Luxman L-507uXII. I know that it is the older model, but when we are talking about as much as a $5,000 difference in price, there is no way I could justify picking the L-509X as the winner, even if technically it is the better amplifier. That is just way too much money to ignore in my humble opinion.
Our second round in this Luxman L-507uXII and L-509X is looking at the design of these two amplifiers. What is interesting here is that these have a very similar design, actually, Luxman has a style that they tend to stick to and that is one of the things that I really like about them.
Luxman L-507uXII: Have a quick look at this Luxman L-507ux Mark II video if you want to get a closer look at this thing. I really do like the design of the Luxman L-507uXII and I have to be honest and say that had I seen this one in the flesh (well metal) first, I may have preferred the design here slightly more. It is not quite as large as the L-509X, but it is still a big boy! It comes in at 17.3 x 7.0 x 17.8 inches and around 25KG in the weight department so it is going to take up a fair bit of space. I think that this has a very cool high-end and retro style about and I love that silver color they have used. The main thing that catches your eye is the two large displays right in the middle as they have a blue backlight. Below this, we have a series of dials and buttons that will allow you to control this and at the sides of the display, we have an input selection dial and a volume control dial as well.
The back of the Luxman L-507uXII is pretty awesome as it is stacked with ports, these are all analog, but you will not be left wishing there were more that is for sure. I like how Luxman clearly labels everything, making it super easy to get your devices connected to it. The top of the unit has a series of air vents to keep this thing as cool as it needs to be. Just like the actual unit, this comes with a retro looking remote control that gives you all the control you need over the amplifier.
Luxman L-509X: I am a massive fan of the design of the Luxman L-509X and I think that it is a good evolution of what Luxman did with the L-507uXII. This is a pretty hefty amplifier coming in at close to 30KG and 17.3” x 7.5” x 18.2” so it needs a pretty solid home. However, I love the heft and size of this thing! It is a little larger than the other model, but overall, I like what Luxman has done here slightly better. You have those two displays on the front and instead of a blue light, it is white and I think it looks much “cleaner” and more stylish. On the left side of this, you have your input selection dial and on the right side, you have the volume dial as well. Below this, we have the same style of dials that we have on the other model. It is a nice and clean look and I think the silver they have used gives this a bit of a retro charm and that is something I am a massive fan of.
The back of the Luxman L-509X is near identical to what you have with the L-507uXII. It gives you a ton of connectivity options and they are all clearly labeled so you will know exactly what you are doing. This is an analog amplifier so that is something you will have to keep in mind. The top of this is a bit different as there are different shaped air vents and I slightly prefer the way these ones look. The remote control that comes with this is near identical to the other one, but with a couple of cosmetic changes that most people will be hard pushed to notice.
The Verdict: These are two awesome looking amplifiers and truth be told it is very, very hard to pick a winner here as they are so close. While I would fully understand if someone preferred the design of the Luxman L-507uXII, I have to say that the few changes that they made with the Luxman L-509 make it stand out just a bit more for me, especially with the way that the lights work on the front.
The final round that we are looking at in this Luxman L-507uXII and L-509X showdown is the most important and that is the sound. I can tell you right now that these both sound great and unless you are a self-professed “audiophile” I am not sure many people will notice a huge difference.
Luxman L-507uXII: I was very impressed with the Luxman L-507uXII and think that there is not a great deal in it if I am being honest with you. As I was playing around with this at a friends, he was in charge of the music we tried out and an album he was very excited to show me was, New Jersey by Bon Jovi which he still to this day says is the best Bon Jovi album. Anyway, he put on Bad Medicine and I was blown away. The raw and real sound that this thing provided on this old ass original 80s pressing of an album really was great. I think you get a very balanced sound with this and I was impressed with the overall power that it had. I do think that it did not quite have as much power as the L-509X, however, it was not as massive a difference as I thought it would be.
One area where I did notice a difference, but my friend told me I was crazy and was hearing things was with the vocals. Do not get me wrong, they sounded great and very clear, but there was just something lacking by a hair when making a direct comparison. We listened to Iron Maiden’s Fear of the Dark which is an incredible album and the quietly sung intro to Fear of the Dark was just missing something that I cannot put my finger on. The thing with this is that at the end of the day sound is subjective and my friend swears that this is the best he has ever heard this song!
Luxman L-509X: I was lucky in that I got to play around with the Luxman L-509X for a rather extended period of time before I had to give it back so it is an amplifier that I came to know very well. Most reviews like this Luxman L-509X HiFi Integrated Amplifier Review – Sensational one here are all glowing positive.
This thing just sounds amazing, I have listened to every kind of music you could imagine with this and one album that I listened to with my wife with this was the soundtrack to A Star Is Born. My wife is not one that usually gets excited about sound, but she even said that this sounded way better than when we listen to it on our own setup and this is an album, she has heard many times. This just nails everything and that is why it is so highly thought of, I personally think that it packs a bit more power than the Luxman L-507uXII!
Before I went to see the awesome movie, Top Gun: Maverick I listened to the original Top Gun Soundtrack on loop for pretty much a whole week, no matter if I was working out or just messing around! I can hand on heart say that this provides some of the best balanced vocals I have heard in a very long time. There is a clear upgrade here, but again, sound is subjective. However, the sound out of this thing is so rich and real that I legit do not see how anyone could have a problem with it. It was so good I said to my wife maybe we should think about getting one! She was on board until I told her the price and then it was shot down.
The Verdict: Both the Luxman L-507uXII and the Luxman L-509 sound phenomenal and no matter which one you go for; you will be impressed. Still, I have to say that for me, the 509 is the winner here. It just gave me a bit more power and a bit better balanced sound, especially when it came to the vocals. Is that slightly better sound worth two more grand… well only you can decide that.
Which Is Better?
I have to be honest and say that when I started this Luxman L-507uXII and L-509X article I thought for sure that the Luxman L-509X was going to win it comfortably. I prefer the design and I think the sound was better too. It is the better amplifier. Side by side with the Luxman L-507uXII, I would have to say that I would pick the L-509X every time! Yet, if I had to actually open up my wallet in order to get one… I am not so sure. Yes, the L-509X is better, but is it so much better that you would want to spend an extra 2, 3 heck even 4 thousand dollars on it? I have to say that I am not so sure, I actually can tell you for a fact that I would not. If money is not an issue and you can comfortably afford it, go for the Luxman L-509X. However, I can tell you that you will not be disappointed with the Luxman L-507uXII if that is the way you decide to go.