‘The best amp we’ve made – ever!’
It’s not often that a manufacturer says something this unequivocal when introducing a product. Cambridge Audio is proudly calling the highly anticipated Azur 851A integrated amplifier the best one they’ve ever made. They’ve taken all the things you love about Cambridge Audio products – things like solid build quality, muscular power components for clean sound, and convenient connectivity options – and they’ve stepped them up a few notches to meet their own continuous improvement mission.
Backing up those words
We’ll start where the rubber meets the road: two toroidal transformers, one dedicated purely to the preamp processes, supply the Class XD circuitry with pristine, supercharged power. But let’s break this statement down to its nuts and bolts. The toroidal transformers are nearly impervious to hum, buzz, and interference problems experienced by lesser transformer designs. And Cambridge Audio’s patented Class XD amplification technology combines the best aspects of two different design approaches: you get the sonic refinements of a Class A amplifier (without the high heat and inefficient power profile), plus the cool-running efficiency of a Class AB amp (with much less of the distortion that sometimes dogs that amp design). So all that clean power can be dedicated to one thing: providing the best quality sound for your speakers.
Ready to roll
There are 8 RCA stereo inputs available, and two balanced XLR stereo inputs as well. Two sets of speaker terminals mean you can easily feed two rooms with your music, or use them to bi-wire a set of compatible speakers. The unit is ready to be integrated into custom-installed multi-room audio system, with its infrared control input, RS-232 port, and Cambridge Audio-specific control bus. And speaking of that, this integrated amp is a perfect companion for Cambridge Audio’s Azur 851C DAC/CD player/pre-amp/network music player. The 851C is a master translator for almost any digital audio source you can name, and will enhance your 851A’s already impressive capabilities.
A newly redesigned volume control lets you make very fine level adjustments across the volume range. An easily readable, user-friendly display, reminiscent of a fine automotive dashboard, gives you the unit’s status at a glance. The analog inputs feature level-trim functions so there won’t be noticeable jumps in volume when switching between input devices. The Azur 851A’s thoughtful touches and graceful design will present you with a satisfying, solid, yet refined listening experience.