Historically, the integrated amplifier has been largely frowned upon by audiophiles. Until recently, they were considered a cheaper and less powerful version of the preamplifier and the power amplifier. As technology advanced, the integrated amplifier became a more viable option as an economical way for a person to obtain amplified sound without spending more money on another component that also takes up more space.
This week’s blog post is an introduction to The Rega Brio Integrated Amplifier, and for the benefit of those new to the audiophile world, let’s start with what an integrated amplifier is and why you should consider to buying one.
An integrated amplifier is two components in one, a power amplifier that produces the wattage needed to drive your loudspeakers, and a preamplifier where the inputs from the various music sources can be connected. The advantages of an integrated amplifier become apparent when the headache of tuning and balancing the preamplifier and the power amplifier no longer needs to be done to achieve great sound. The multiple inputs and the space and cost savings make an integrated amplifier perfect for new and experienced audiophiles alike.
The 2017 Rega Brio integrated amplifier meticulously improved every aspect of the already solid unit. The circuitry has been fully upgraded to handle higher specifications for all critical parts and Rega gave it a facelift with the new fully aluminum two-part case that not only improves the look but also boosts the heat dissipation capabilities. Another improvement is the addition of a second raw power supply to provide further isolation between output stage and the driver stage/line and phono amplifiers. This improves the isolation between high and low level signal stages of the amplifier. For convenience, the new Brio has also integrated a headphone socket for the standard hi-fi headphones in the unit that is specially designed to avoid interference with the audio circuit when not in use.
For the price, there is nothing that can match the Rega Brio’s very high specification and all its upgrades. The Rega Brio is an attractive integrated amplifier for the new audiophile and experts with more seasoned ears. And though no incentive is needed to buy the Brio, for the month of March, there is a promotion at Hifi Centre Vancouver: With the purchase of a Brio, get a free RP1 turntable in Cool Gray finish. The Rega Brio is $1099 and RP1 is worth $550.