Rega Aethos Review
The Aethos stereo amplifier is housed in a brand new custom designed case. Employing four 160 W 16 Amp output transistors per channel, this delivers 156 W per channel into 6 Ω. The Aethos is a dual mono design using a custom wound toroidal transformer and regulated supplies for the sensitive amplification and driver stages. The pre-amplifier stage uses class-A discrete circuitry throughout. The Aethos is a no compromise product with one goal, to deliver your music as faithfully as possible. The Aethos has been built to Rega’s high standards of reliability and quality to ensure many years of musical enjoyment.
The Aethos’s power amplifier section uses two complementary pairs of Sanken Darlington output transistors, giving a solid power output of 125W per channel into 8ohms.
Those looking for digital inputs, wireless in the form of Bluetooth connectivity or even a phono stage will need to look elsewhere or add extra boxes. Given Rega’s record player heritage, some may find the lack of a phono stage surprising
The Aethos’s build quality is impressive. The chunky styling of the new casework may not be to all tastes but it certainly feels rock solid and inspires confidence. The controls are simple enough with smooth-acting buttons for choosing the inputs for listening and recording.
The second Aethos sample proves a notable improvement in both respects. It turns out that the cables for one of the channels had been disturbed (possibly during transit) with the result that distortion had increased on that channel. The second sample has no such issue and is very much Rega on top form. Given Rega’s track record, we would hope and expect any issues to be sorted quickly.
The Aethos retains all the verve of the company’s established affordable integrateds, but adds a huge dose of extra clarity, precision and muscle to the recipe.
Power outputs at rated 230/115 V supply voltage:
125 W RMS both channels driven into the rated load of 8 Ω
156 W RMS both channels driven into 6 Ω
Note: Continued high level use into 6 Ω may cause the case to exceed 40 °C above the ambient temperature and activate the thermal shutdown.
No load 12.5 V
32 Ω 2.7 V
54 Ω 4 V
300 Ω 9 V
Source impedance 109 Ω
Record output level (with rated input levels) 219 mV
Record output impedance 560 Ω
Pre-amp output level (with rated input levels) 840 mV
Pre-amp output impedance 100 Ω
Input sensitivities for rated output level:
Input 1-5 and record input sensitivity 224 mV @ 17 kΩ
Maximum input level 11.5 V (record output amplifier overload point)
Direct input sensitivity 840 mV @ 50 kΩ
Power amplifier gain 31.6 dB
Frequency response @ 100 W into 8 Ω:
Line input 1-5 and record 10 Hz (-0.8 dB point) to 30 kHz (-0.5 dB point)
Direct input 10 Hz (-0.8 dB point) to 50 kHz (-0.5 dB point)
THD+Noise @ 100 W into 8 Ω:
Direct input (Power amplifier only) Typically 0.007% @ 1kHz (measurement bandwidth 22 Hz to 30 kHz)
Line input Typically 0.007% @ 1kHz (measurement bandwidth 22Hz to 30KHz)
Power consumption Maximum output: 415 W @ 230 V / 220 V / 115 V / 100 V into the rated load of 124 W RMS into 8 Ω
Fuse ratings T5 AL 250 V – 230 V/ 50 Hz and 220 V / 60 Hz
T8 AL 250 V – 115 V / 60 Hz and 100 V 50/60 Hz
Dimensions W 433 mm x H 95 mm x D 360 mm (including speaker terminals)
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