Complex rhythms are handled effortlessly; individual instruments are rendered precisely and tonal balance is such that this amplifier is a lot less fussy about partnering with equipment than many of its rivals. Of course, cheaper alternatives such as the Audiolab A give you far more features for the money.
But if a remote control, six line level inputs and a smattering of solid metal controls are really all you need from a stereo amplifier, this simple, clean-cut affair is great bang for your buck.
Read the full review: Musical Fidelity M2si. Copland doesn't introduce new products all that regularly, so the CSA is a welcome addition to its line-up and a welcome addition to our list of the best stereo amplifiers you can buy. The CSA boasts a clutter-free and elegant design, with digital module, headphone output and a phono stage all to be found inside that well-constructed chassis. At its core is a hybrid electronic design that produces a solid W per channel 8ohm.
Sonically, the amp produces a nicely layered image with instruments sharply focused — its sonic precision and a sense of fluidity are hugely appealing. Read the full review: Copland CSA The D looks a whole lot like its cheaper sibling, the D V2, and is jam-packed with features.
But then, you get all that if you buy the cheaper variant — so why pay more for the D ? Well, the main reason is that the provides more power than the D V2 80W vs 60W.
It also sports a more luxurious design and comes in a case that features some extra premium touches. The added power makes for a beefier presentation but that's not to say this amp punches like Tyson. It serves up a smooth, balanced performance that is controlled and detailed across the frequency range. On the downside, it lacks the same level of enthusiasm as it's lower-priced sibling.
This amp's technological firepower make it a great buy for the money. But if you don't care for the additional 20W of power, the D V2 might be the better choice. Read the full review: NAD D It has a sensible features list and, most importantly, a performance that justifies its hefty price tag. The A-S is a beautifully built product, as expected at this level — an impressively solid beast thanks to its chunky casework and back-straining 25kg weight.
This is a surprisingly clean and clear performer that renders the leading edges of notes with crispness without ever veering towards sounding hard or edgy. There are certainly more robust sounding alternatives, but make no mistake, the A-S is a classy performer. Read the full Yamaha A-S review. What Hi-Fi? Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London and Bath.
Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.
Read more about how we test. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer. Reasons to Buy Strong presentation. Reasons to Avoid Nothing at this price. Reasons to Buy Detailed, dynamic audio.
Reasons to Avoid Pricier than the previous model. Rega Brio A sonically-superior stereo amp for demanding listeners.
Reasons to Buy Detail and dynamics to die for. Reasons to Avoid No digital inputs. Cambridge AXA35 One of the best budget integrated amplifiers for the money. Reasons to Buy Punchy, precise sound. Reasons to Avoid Remote struggles off-axis. Reasons to Buy Full-bodied performance.
Reasons to Avoid Nothing really at this price. Audiolab A An impressive amplifier and a classy alternative to the Rega Brio. Reasons to Buy Clear, refined and articulate sound.
Reasons to Avoid Fierce competition. Rega Elex-R This high-end bargain would impress at double the price. Reasons to Buy Agile and articulate performer. Reasons to Avoid Remote control could be classier. Rega Aethos A superb stereo amplifier with that justifies its premium pricetag.
Reasons to Buy Impressive agility and punch. Reasons to Avoid Runs warm. Moon i One of the best high-end stereo amplifiers for the money. Reasons to Buy Smooth, subtle and dynamic. Andy Summers, Johnny Marr and Robert Smith have all been religious users of the Jazz Chorus line, in turn making it one of the most iconic solid state options of the last 45 years.
The JC is named so due to the lush onboard stereo chorus effect that has made it so desirable. It is dynamic, and with the EL34 power tubes it takes on the tonal character of a hyper-trophied Marshall Plexi. This is guitar tone as spectacle, a roman candle of overdrive with a very usable clean channel. It also features a half-power option incorporated into the front panel standby switch. The Dirty channel includes gain, bass, mid, treble and master volume controls, while the clean Natural channel has a single volume control.
Read the full Orange Rocker 32 review. But the Copper is more than just a throwback to Vox. Set clean and sweetened by the reverb, it has a quasi-American boutique vibe, and a response that feels just right for blues. The pricier Deluxe version has valve-driven spring reverb and tremolo. For many years, the Marshall Silver Jubilee was the amp that got away. Produced in limited numbers in to celebrate 50 years of Marshall, the Silver Jubilee is effectively a JCM that has been factory-modded to run a little hotter, and it was something of a minor tragedy that it never entered the always-in-production category its performance deserved.
The gain structure on the Jubilee is something to behold but the Frusciante-esque cleans are not to be sniffed at either. It sounds good with pedals and will definitely stand up to most drummers. At odd bucks, it represents excellent value.
Based on Mesa's flagship Mark V, the Mark Five: 25 head is small, perfectly formed and typical of Mesa's superlative design and attention to detail. Two independent channels, each with three very different voice presets, combine with Mesa's iconic five-band graphic EQ for a choice of 12 sounds. You can footswitch between the channels, with the graphic on or off for quasi four-channel operation and preset 25 or 10 watts per channel.
One of the best features lives on the back panel: a CabClone speaker-emulated direct output, with a speaker defeat for silent recording or practice, using the built-in headphone socket. Despite the Mark Five: 25's long feature list, it's very easy to use and its tones are sensational.
The rhythm channel covers the shimmering clean tones of the modern Boogie and the fatter 'blackface'-inspired midrange of the fabled Mark I, while the Mark V crunch voice is so deep and three-dimensional you could record an entire album with it. The lead channel is equally inspiring, with a perfect rendition of the Mark IIC's overdrive tone arguably the most coveted Boogie sound , along with more modern distortion effects that sound unbelievably good when tweaked with the graphic.
Lenny Kravitz was involved in the design of the RT Black Magick Reverb, and at his behest there is treble, there is reverb, and there is master volume. But, still, and Lenny would forgive us, the guitarist we think of when we think of the Black Magick is Jimmy Page, with the original Black Magick a replica of his old Supro Coronado. Linking the channels opens up a new frontier in gain for this amp.
These features, along with 3 channels of all-valve goodness, compliment the modern metal guitarist like a fine red wine compliments a posh French cheese. Read the full Peavey Invective head review. It is a simple, single-channel affair, with high and low-gain inputs on a simple front panel with controls for gain, presence, reverb and master volume and a 3-band EQ, and it offers instant access to the finest Tweed tones you can buy, all sauced by the sweetest valve-driven spring reverb.
The California Tweed is breathtaking, a throwback to a golden era in guitar amplification, but very much built for today. Exceptional all round. Amplifiers have been around longer than the electric guitar.
Early units were made as portable PA speaker systems around the start of the 20th century. Since the invention of the electric guitar, however, amplifiers designed specifically to enhance the signal from an electric guitar have come in all different shapes and sizes, with a massive range of different features available.
Finding the best guitar amp for you will involve considering a few key points before buying. At first, all guitar amps were tube amps, that is until transistors were invented and utilised in amp technology - these are known as solid state amps.
Despite solid state amps usually being lighter and cheaper, many players still prefer the tone and response that you get from a tube amp. As you turn the volume up on a tube amp, you start to get a natural breakup to your sound - this is harmonic distortion which is perceived as the most organic type of overdrive. Amps like the Boss Katana have some great clean sounds, alongside high gain tones, with everything else in between.
They also make a great platform for pedals. High-end digital amps like the Kemper have a range of sounds built in that are essentially digital snapshots of certain amps. This gives you authentic tube-like tone, in a digital package - the best of both worlds! A head is the preamp and power amp section, and requires an external speaker, or cab, for you to actually hear anything. The benefits are obvious with a pedalboard amp. But this all depends on how important portability really is to you.
On the flipside, the combo is an amplifier and speaker all in one neat little box. Size definitely matters here. Think about wattage too - if you just want to play at home, then a low wattage amp will do fine. MusicRadar The No. Buying an amp online.
Positive Grid Spark 40 The ultimate smart guitar amplifier. Type: Modelling desktop amp. Output: 40W. Number of channels: 30 Amp Models. Weight: 5. Reasons to avoid - Waiting times on orders can vary. Type: Battery-powered desktop combo. Output: 30W 2x 15W stereo, 15W battery.
Speaker: 2x 3. Weight: 4. Blackstar Silverline Deluxe head A boutique take on digital modelling amp tech. Type: Digital modelling head. Output: W at 4ohms. Number of channels: 6 fully-programmable voices, 12 onboard memory slots. Weight: 9. Reasons to avoid - Alternatives offer more effects options. Type: Modelling combo. Output: W switchable to 50W or 0. Speaker: 1x 12" Custom Waza Speaker.
Weight: Type: Valve combo. The XA25 sounds amazing with low-sensitivity speakers such as Harbeths and Magnepans. The Schiit Ragnarok is a class AB amplifier design, power is rated at 60 watts per channel for 8-ohm speakers, watts per for 4-ohm speakers.
The Ragnarok measures 16 by 12 by 3. This bad boy runs hot, just like most of my favorite high-end amps. Schiit's five-year warranty is considerably longer than what you get with most mass-market electronics. Sound quality is excellent, especially for movies.
The user interface is easy to follow, and it comes coupled with a friendly remote. Every time I review a stereo receiver I remember how much easier they are to set up than any of today's AV receivers. Turn on the R-S , select the input and enjoy the tunes. The Sphinx v2 is a "hybrid" tube, solid-state design. The latter can be used with a powered subwoofer.
The built-in headphone amp has also been improved over the original Sphinx. Steve Guttenberg Feb. Rotel RA integrated amplifier From time to time I collect stand-out products for a gallery, and this time I'm bringing you the best receivers and amplifiers.
Vista Spark integrated amplifier The Vista Spark is exactly what the audiophile world needs: A small, no-frills, no-nonsense high quality affordable integrated amplifier. Onkyo TX stereo receiver I've long been an advocate of stereo home theater, but there was one stumbling block. Schiit Ragnarok integrated amplifier The Schiit Ragnarok is a class AB amplifier design, power is rated at 60 watts per channel for 8-ohm speakers, watts per for 4-ohm speakers.
Yamaha R-S stereo receiver Every time I review a stereo receiver I remember how much easier they are to set up than any of today's AV receivers.
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