A High-End Amplifier in the Guise of a 2.1-Channel Receiver: 90Wpc Arcam SR250 Features Cirrus Logic DAC, Dirac Live Room Correction, HDMI Inputs, More
The innovative SR250, Arcam's first high-end, two-channel receiver marries the connectivity of a fully loaded AVR with the simplicity of a traditional stereo amplifier. Audiophile quality all the way, and able to deliver 90 watts of high-current amplification per channel, SR250 prides itself on the kind of realism that makes both music and movies spring to life. Detail, imaging, soundstaging, purity, dynamics – traits often associated with separates – emerge here in ways that will undoubtedly surprise you. If you, like many audiophiles, have a television connected with your stereo system, the Stereophile Recommended SR250 gives you everything you need. It interfaces with phono preamplifiers, CD players, satellite receivers, Blu-ray players, game systems, and more. Its bonus .1-channel welcomes subwoofers and speaks to its high-resolution video support of 4K Ultra HD and 3D video. You also get ARC compatibility and network access to Internet radio stations. Call it flexibility and sonics in one convenient, modern package that also happens to have Dirac Live room correction, a feature that alone proves itself worth the cost of the entire unit. Via a supplied microphone, the suite will measure, analyze, and compensate for any shortcomings in your room. The results are nothing short of brilliant.
And once you factor in the Cirrus Logic CS42528 DAC and hand-selected components, SR250's abilities seem effortless. The Ethernet-controllable SR250 also gives you connectivity for days via seven HDMI inputs, three HDMI outputs, and an internal tuner with fully integrated FM/DAB/DAB+. No wonder Hi-Fi+ critic Alan Sircom called it the "best £25,000 amp you can get for £2,500." Preamplifier outputs, a USB-A port, UPnP functionality, built-in Spotify Connect, Dolby Audio, DTS HD Master Audio, and integration with whole-house control systems pile on the spoils, as does control via Arcam's smartphone app.
Of equal importance, SR250 has enough muscle to drive reference-class speakers. We've connected it to a pair of Revel Ultima2 Salon2 towers and watched the stunned expressions wash over people's faces. As much as any product in the British manufacturer's lineup, SR250 delivers time and time again on the company's focus on high-end sound quality. Absent the noisiness and cheap circuitry that defeat many a receiver (and amplifier, for that matter), SR250 sports one of the finest jitter ratings in the business. While bells-and-whistle features might be sexier, SR250's ultra-low distortion lets you hear what you want to (and should) hear. Again, we cannot overstate how natural, transparent, and musical this component sounds.
You can take our word for it or you can find out for yourself with a risk-free in-home audition backed by our Music Direct Satisfaction Guarantee.
"The Arcam SR250 is a really good stereo amplifier, and not just at the price. If you can get past the inherent fear of home theatre intrinsic to many audiophiles, and are prepared to delve into Dirac, this is perhaps the best £25,000 amp you can get for £2,500. Recommended!"
—Alan Sircom, Hi-Fi+
"With Dirac Live enabled and dialed in, the Arcam impressed Kal as 'even more satisfying and communicative.'"
—Stereophile, Recommended Component
What Is Class G Amplification?
Honed to perfection at Arcam from years of testing and implementation by the company's engineers, Class G uses Class A technology exclusively for low-level signals and an additional power supply for larger sections of the audio waveform, an engineering solution that eliminating crossover distortion (caused by Class A/B) and any potential power shortages during extreme swings (suffered by Class A). The result: Truly, the best of both worlds.
More About Class G Amplification
Like a hybrid car engine, Class G implements multiple power supplies rather than just a single supply. If a dynamic signal is received that goes beyond the capability of this first power supply, the secondary supply is gradually brought in up to full rated power output as required. This gives a very efficient design as additional power is only used when required, much like a turbo charger. Modern high-speed silicon allows Arcam to the make this switch faster that would ever be required, even way beyond the audio bandwidth, so there is no "turbo lag". The first power supply is of lower power and within this region we run in pure Class A, which has no crossover distortion. As the secondary supply is only used when required, extreme levels of power are possible because very little energy is wasted in the amplifier as heat when it is not being used. Without control this power would be ill-used, so like high performance car tires, multiple output devices within the amplifier keep a tight grip on the loudspeaker at all times, ensuring your listening experience never "leaves the road."
- Two-channel high-end audiophile AVR
- Ultra 4K (UHD) HDMI 2.0a with HDCP 2.2 capability
- Seven HDMI inputs, three HDMI outputs, and ARC compatible
- Dirac Live for Arcam room correction
- Spotify Connect enabled
- Class G power amplification
- Cirrus Logic CS42528 DAC
2 channels driven, 20Hz: 20kHz, <0.02% THD: 90W
2 channels driven, 1kHz, 0.2% THD: 120W
Residual noise & hum (A-wtd): <0.15mV
Signal/noise ratio (A-wtd, stereo direct): 110dB
Frequency response: 20Hz-20kHz ± 0.2dB
HDMI Inputs: x7 (6 x HDMI2.0a, HDCP2.2, 1 x MHL compatible)
HDMI Outputs: Z1 x2 (out1 ARC, HDMI2.0a, HDCP2.2, out2 HDMI2.0a, HDCP2.2), Z2 x1 (HDMI2.0a, HDCP2.2)
Audio Inputs: HDMI: x7, Coax SPDIF: x4, Toslink: x2, RCA Phono: x6, 3.5mm aux, USB input, Ethernet Client, Internet Radio, ARC (from display)
Audio Outputs: 2.1 Pre-amp output, 4x RCA Phono, Zone 2 RCA Phono
Radio Tuner: FM/DAB/DAB+ (in appropriate markets)
Max: 600W (approx. 2040 BTU/hour)
Dimensions (WDH): 17.0" x 16.7" x 6.7"
Weight: 33.3 lbs.
User Manual (PDF, 60.9 MB)