Musical Fidelity, a renowned name in audio electronics, has consistently delivered exceptional sound quality and craftsmanship. One of its standout offerings is the Musical Fidelity A1 amplifier series, a line of amplifiers that has garnered praise from audiophiles for its superior performance and timeless design.The introduction of the Musical Fidelity A1 in 1985 was instrumental in establishing Musical Fidelity as a serious player in the audio components industry.
The A1 stood apart from its competitors due to its Class A biased circuitry and distinctive casework. The entire top part of the case was a finned heatsink! Class A amplifiers produce much heat, and the A1 was no different. Although only 25 watts per channel, the A1 produced so much heat one could only touch the top for a few seconds before getting blisters!
However, the most impressive part was its sound profile and character; it was clean, transparent, and full. Audiophiles loved it. The A1 was sold by the thousands, and Musical Fidelity soon produced complementing components.
38 years later, the legend is revived with updated components and circuitry and a larger case for better heat dissipation. The power supplies per channel are also a little more generous. An improved layout for the phono stage completes the new design, which is the perfect resurrection for what was already a perfect amplifier. They have managed to keep the same sonic character all these years later.
Design and Build:
The A1 exudes a classic aesthetic that combines simplicity with elegance. Musical Fidelity has focused on quality construction and premium materials, ensuring the amplifiers deliver outstanding performance and stand the test of time. The robust build is complemented by a minimalist design, reflecting the brand's dedication to the essentials of audio reproduction.
Class A Amplification:
At the heart of the A1 series is its Class A amplifier design. Class A amplifiers are celebrated for their linear operation and low distortion. This technology allows the A1 amplifiers to provide a pristine and uncoloured audio signal, faithfully reproducing the nuances of the original recording. The result is a captivating listening experience that captures the true essence of the music.
One of the defining characteristics of the Musical Fidelity A1 amplifiers is their distinctive sound signature. Renowned for their transparency, these amplifiers deliver a detailed, dynamic audio performance. Whether indulging in the intricate melodies of classical music or immersing yourself in the pulsating beats of modern genres, the A1 series is designed to elevate the listening experience.
Cinema Architects x Musical Fidelity:
For many years, Cinema Architects were the agents for Musical Fidelity in South Africa; Schalk Burger, founder of Cinema Architects, sold just about every A1 amplifier in SA! To this day, many satisfied Musical Fidelity clients still use these components daily. Schalk was more than the Musical Fidelity dealer in SA, he was a good friend of the founder of Musical Fidelity, Antony Michaelson, and spent many hours with Antony at MF factory over the years discussing new components and opportunities.
It couldn’t be more fitting that all these years later, Schalk would be the first to sell the latest generation of A1 Amplifiers. On the 23rd of November 2023, Schalk presented the first new generation A1 to Vernon Coby.
Vernon refers to himself as a “music lover” instead of an audiophile. Explaining that he loves music and wants to hear it as it was recorded. Vernon is the proud owner of many high-end brands and recalls being unable to access an A1 in 1985. When he heard there was a new generation of A1, he knew now was the time to own one and still be part of the A1 legacy.
This is what he had to say later that day in a personal message to Schalk
“Wow, awesome Schalk. I hooked the A1 up to the JBL speakers, and it drives them with the utmost ease and musicality. This is indeed a majestic, iconic amp, thank you very much.”
This was soon followed by another message!
“I’m actually shocked, I dare not even take it past the 9’oclock mark. At that level it sounds like a big bold amp with all the details, dynamic swings and musicality.”
Cinema Architects launched its high tech – high design experience centre this year in Kramerville, Sandton, catering very much for home theatre and home automation. The second phase will include a listening room where audio components such as Musical Fidelity will be available “off the shelf”. For now, they are available for pre-order. New MF items will also be listed on www.cinemaarchitects.co.za during December 2023.
For more information on Musical Fidelity products or ordering the new A1, please get in touch with Schalk Burger directly on 083 777 0450
A handover and unbox video is available on the Cinema Architects Youtube channel here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_N3NX5c5fw
Story by: Mauricio Tavares