We have collected for you eight of the brightest, most technologically advanced and modern complete amplifiers. The models have made great strides forward and offer luxurious sound for every taste and budget – our rating is compiled in order of increasing price of devices.
8. Leak Stereo 230
The revived cult British company Leak in 2022 released its perhaps most high-profile release – the Leak Stereo 230 integrated amplifier. Just like many years ago, the model literally revolutionizes the entry-level hi-fi segment, offering stunning detail and muscle for relatively little money. The output power of 115 W per channel when driven into 4 ohms is again quite sufficient for most speakers, and the built-in phono stage, digital-to-analogue converter (on the ES9038Q2M chip with PCM support up to 768 kHz) and Bluetooth aptX adapter guarantee sufficient flexibility installations.
Pros – record price/quality ratio
Cons – There could be more detail on the bass
Verdict : Must have
7. Denon PMA-900HNE
Before us is a full-fledged network solution; Denon PMA-900HNE can not only amplify the signal, but also stream a digital stream over the network, and also convert it into an analog signal. The model produces 85 W per channel (with a speaker resistance of 4 Ohms), the circuitry is built on high-current transistors and is complemented by a proprietary HEOS module, built-in clients for Spotify, Amazon Music, TuneIn, Deezer, as well as an MM phono preamplifier. The spacious and airy sound of the amplifier can surprise even seasoned audiophiles.
Pros – excellent stage construction
Cons – not very high power
Verdict : A new stage in the development of a famous brand
6. Audiolab 9000A
Audiolab 9000A currently occupies the top line in the latest model range of the British company. The device easily produces as much as 100 Watts per channel when operating at an 8 Ohm load in class AB, is equipped with a color IPS display “with arrows” and has a “full stuffing” of a phono stage on discrete JFET transistors and a built-in DAC on the ES9038Pro Saber chip ( 32/768). The amplifier’s power supply is built on a large 320 VA toroidal transformer, the filter uses four capacitors of 15,000 μF each, and the amplifier circuit itself uses a CFB (Complementary Feedback) topology, which makes the quiescent current independent of the temperature of the output transistors. The slightly dark sound of the device forms a full-fledged wall of sound, textured, voluminous and physically felt.
Pros – muscles and strength
Cons – slightly dark presentation
Verdict : Looks great and sounds great – the device won’t let you down
5. Marantz Model 40n
The integrated amplifier Marantz Model 40n flaunts a mercury, very flexible supply – and in terms of microdynamics the device has few equals even in a more expensive price group. Of course, there is also support for HEOS technology, streaming options via Wi-Fi or Ethernet, Spotify, Airplay 2, Tidal, TuneIn clients and a high-quality Marantz Musical Phono EQ phono stage. The amplifier topology is based on the company’s favorite HDAM (Hyper Dynamic Amplifier Module) circuit – and here it does not fail, 100 W at 4 Ohms looks quite good.
Pros – rhythmic and musical apparatus
Cons – sometimes I would like more extended bass
Verdict : Time-tested technology and great sound
4. Rose RA180
The Korean integrated amplifier Rose RA180 is simply stunning with its appearance – we have already seen amplifiers with arrows, but amplifiers with gears – not yet! However, behind the extravagant design hides a talented performer who can cope without exaggeration with any speakers, because the power of the experimental speaker is 2 x 400 W in class AD on GaN transistors. The functions can be listed for a long time, there is almost everything, including not only streaming, but also an active crossover – but the sparkling sound of the Rose RA180 is worth hearing.
Pros – all the features you could dream of
Cons – high frequencies are not always as refined as we would like
Verdict : State-of-the-art model
3. McIntosh MA252
The McIntosh MA252 design is based on the iconic McIntosh MC 275 amplifier. However, the new model offers up to 100 watts of power into 8 ohms and up to 160 watts into 4 ohms, using 12AT and 12AX triodes in the pre-amp stage. A phono stage for moving magnet heads and a mono output for connecting a subwoofer are not forgotten. The 12.7-kilogram device sounds fantastically great, forming plastic musical images with holographic clarity.
Verdict : McIntosh MA252 highlights the firm’s leadership
2. ONIX OIA92
Under the hood, ONIX OIA92 has a precision element base – Sanken transistors, Nichikon capacitors, 600 VA transformers. The amplifier easily develops 200 W of power when operating at an 8 Ohm load, is equipped with an audiophile DAC based on the AKM AKK4493EQ chip (24/768) and an elegant Bluetooth 5.0 adapter based on Qualcomm CSR8675. The mastodon, weighing 29 kg, nevertheless sounds reverent and gentle, turning into a steel fist on the material that requires it.
Pros – excellent design and sound
The only downside is the price…
Verdict : Pay attention to this device, it will not disappoint you
1. Aavik I-880
The latest model from Flemming Eric Rasmussen guarantees 200 W into an 8 ohm load in pure Class A with negligible distortion of 0.007%. The 36kg giant uses a design in which four 500-watt power supplies keep the output stages always Class A, regardless of how much current is required to be delivered to the load. This eliminates time delays inherent in the increased induction of multiple windings and eliminates parasitic capacitances. We add a volume control based on LDR (Light Dependent Resistor), which has a record low noise level due to the absence of switches and relays – and we get the device of our dreams and tomorrow. The sound of the Aavik I-880 integrated amplifier is amazingly accurate and hyper-realistic.
Pros – amazing musicality of presentation
Cons – for its price group – nothing
Verdict : Aavik I-880 seems like a device from the next century