This product is no longer available to order and will not be coming back into stock.
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The Musical Fidelity A1 is a piece of hi-fi history. First produced in the 1980s, its pure Class A electrical design was famous not just for its ability to work with a wide variety of equipment of the day, but for its ability to deliver a sound performance like nothing else. The new generation of A1, released in 2023, stays true to the original design in almost every way, only making changes to improve certain technical characteristics and suit modern requirements.
The electrical layout of the A1 features completely discrete, fully symmetrical pure Class A technology. Delivering 25W of power (to an 8Ω load), it can also handle 25A of maximum current output. Though these numbers may seem low compared to some modern amplifiers, the A1 is still able to drive more complex speakers thanks to its ability to slide (not “switch”) into Class B operation when further current draw is temporarily needed.
The A1’s transformer design is directly inspired by the 1988 design but has been updated with more efficient dual-mono split-rail windings and better components for improved stability and better heat management. The amplifier stages are now powered by fully independent supplies for left and right channel allowing for better power handling and stereo imaging. Each power amplifier also now has double the supply capacity, resulting in reduced ripple and noise artefacts.
The low-noise pre-amplifier circuitry is the same as the original A1, though this area also benefits from new modern touches. First, the DIRECT switch on the front panel allows users to bypass the Gain stage before the musical signal reaches the volume dial. By switching this button on, the pre-amplifier stage will apply roughly 10dB less gain, suiting it to more modern, high-gain source devices that may benefit from a wider volume dial range. Second, the use of a new ALPS RK series motorised potentiometer for the volume dial not only allows greater accuracy and reliability, but it means the 2023 A1 amplifier can also make use of a remote control for volume adjustments.
Alongside five RCA stereo inputs, a fixed level output and a variable output, the A1 also features a high-quality built-in phono stage. The phono input allows for direct connection to a turntable, whether it has a moving magnet (MM) or a moving coil (MC) cartridge. The low-noise design and automatic impedance-matching for MC cartridges make this a viable solution, and a great convenience for vinyl record lovers.
The industrial design of the A1 is the same as the original from the 1980s, with its angular front panel, full-length top-mounted heatsink and side-mounted ventilation panels. The only minor modifications are intended to help enhance the user experience and manage the heat output from the pure Class A technology employed within. The result, when combined with the intricate workings, is an amplifier that takes you right back to the original design brief for the A1: to enjoy music.
The return of a true hi-fi classic, the A1 demonstrates that there is more than just power when it comes to excellently-crafted amplifiers. With an updated transformer, power supplies and modern low noise components, the A1 is a true sight to behold and furthermore, an amp that needs to be heard in person. Experience first-hand and learn more about the day-to-day working of this specialised amplifier by visiting your local dealer.
Musical Fidelity A1 (2023) Integrated Amplifier Review
"Musical Fidelity’s new A1 integrated amplifier is better than the original in pretty much every respect – and unlike some ‘anniversary’ integrated amps, this company hasn’t gone for boutique pricing."
PURE CLASS A HEAVEN ! (New) Musical Fidelity A1 Amplifier Review
"They've not only revived the classic, but improved it. It brings the A1 right up to date whilst maintaining the design philosophy of the original."
An exciting and nostalgic concept, the 'new' Musical Fidelity A1 is as true to the original product as is possible today. Built for more concentrated listening sessions the A1 is a masterclass in musical enjoyment, bringing pure joy to your favourite records in a way that only Musical Fidelity can.