Cambridge Audio Azur 540A Integrated Amplifiers

Azur 540A

50W/channel into 8 Ohms, 80W/channel into 4 Ohms, protection system with no sound quality degrading active circuitry added into the signal path, second set of speaker outputs, optional MM phono, headphone output, standby function, bypassable tone controls, low-resonance and acoustically damped chassis, all-metal casework with a solid aluminium front panel, slim-line Azur remote control with aluminium top panel

User Reviews (11)

Showing 1-10 of 11  
Norse Viking   Audio Enthusiast [May 22, 2016]

This is a fine example of why British audio is the finest money can buy, as even this entry level amp can mix with the best from Britain...
Paired with my KEF Q100 speakers and QED cabling, it makes for an addictive listening experience. My B&W headphones pair just perfectly with this amp also.
Cambridge Audio won't disappoint even a hardcore audiophile!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Lupine   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 08, 2014]

Sorry, but don't buy this model. It sounds great, when it does not drop a channel. Unfortunately, I lose a channel due to some kind of circuit issue every time I use this unit
.
My advice,

Avoid.

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
2
Brandon   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 02, 2013]

The Cambridge Azur 540A V2 is a current go-between for me since I have changed directions and have decided to go integrated. I traded an older amplifier for this amp, which was used as a demo in a record shop near my home, so even though I have only been using it for a week or so, it is fully broke in.

Pros: It's a simple design, has the option for a direct signal path, Pre-outs allow it to be used as a preamp. Sound is crisp, clean. Unit is very musical, and 50 extremely effecient watts certainly fills the room with sound.

Cons: Not nearly as warm as I expected considering the experience I've had with British equipment. The soundstage doesn't have the depth I'm used to with higher wattage amps. Finally, the most dissapointing attribute is the extreme sharp edginess to the top end. I notice this more on vinyl, and less on my CD player which is using a tube buffer to round off the top.

In a nutshell: I would definitely recommend this amp to anyone on a budget. Although nothing at this pricepoint will WOW the critical ear, it does it's job and does it with some punch!

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
mgoorevich   AudioPhile [Apr 18, 2008]
Strength:

Cheap. Cambridge Audio let you think it's trully british. Ha-ha. Very detailed sound. Powerful.

Weakness:

Too bright! Poorness of solid lows (80-250Hz). Smeared subs. Heavy and ugly remote control.

I purchased this amp for the home use. Mainly to listen to the music CD's. I have PMC DB1 monitors connected to it.
I am professional audio engineer and own my studio equiped with Pro monitors (mainly active) Genelec and Mackie HR824.
What can I say about Cabridge Audio 540A?
It's not transparent. It's too bight at 10-12 Khz. It doesn't provide deep bass and not well on sub frequencies either. Listening to this amp may be fatiquing if listening for a long time. I would not recommend this amp to those who is looking for the nutral sound. For me it colours the sound on some british, may be even tube alike manier.
The strong point is a very good stereo image and solid mid impression. Very sillent! Looks OK but not professional (but it's not intended to be).
There is a "learing curve" of a week for internal components to fit the speakers parameters.
After this week the sound remained still detailed but less bright. Although I am very confident that it boosts frequencies above 10 KHz.
It's fine for home but not for critical listeners or professionals.

Similar Products Used: Mackie HR824, Genelec1031A, Even TR6A
Those are all active speakers but in conjunction with their internal amp it 's a fair comparisson to overall sound.
OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
3
magisterludi   AudioPhile [Apr 02, 2008]
Strength:

Low price, good with any type of music, beep bass and very harmonious midrange.

Weakness:

Has those plastic protection tabs on the speaker terminals that the Brits seem to think are necessay.

Used this in a 2nd system with a pair of Wharfedale Emerald speakers and was
always more than pleased. Incredably natural and smooth sound, but never lacked for details. provided a nice 3D soundfield where the music was mostly free from the speakers. Could listen to that setup for hours, never fatiguing as some of the lower priced amps can be in this range. The bass is deep and rich and the highs although slightly rolled off are natural and not harsh.
It has 6 or 7 RCA inputs ; A/B speaker option; and preamp out. Certainly powerfull enough to drive 86dB effient speakers.
Has to be a best buy option for those on a budget. I highly recommend an audition if you are in the <$500 range.

Similar Products Used: Rotel, Nad, Onkyo, Sony. It sounded better than any of these that I tried
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Walker   Audio Enthusiast [Dec 28, 2005]
Strength:

Sound, price and looks

Weakness:

None

This is a great amplifier. Pleasant and clean sound and enough power to drive my B&W DM 603 S2 speakers with ease. At first I was not crazy about it but after replacing my NAD cd-player for a CA 540C Azur it all came together. Sounds terrific with all types of music. Warning: badly recorded cd's sound even worse.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Levike   AudioPhile [Feb 13, 2005]
Strength:

Excellent Sound Best Sound For The Price

Weakness:

None Yeah the back of the unit is a little weak, but how many times are u going to unplug stuff, only once or twice

Here is my follow up on this amp Well I used it for more then 50 hours and all I can say is that it has become better in any way. Sounds better, it's more defined. Excellent sound for this amount of money

Similar Products Used: HK
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Levike   AudioPhile [Dec 02, 2004]
Strength:

Wonderful Amp Powerful

Weakness:

None

I recently got my Azur 540A, and all I can say is WOW. For the price I paid this little amp is amazing, and I haven't even broken it in. Now I need the matching CD Player. I've been using this wonderful amp for about 20 hours and I still need to reach 36 Hours of break in so it will reach it's full performance. Well it already sounds amazing after only 20 hours so I can't even imagine what it will be like after 36 hours. Best amp for around $349.

Similar Products Used: Rotel, Harman Kardon, Music Hall
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
topspeed   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 02, 2004]
Strength:

Low level resolution Appearance Overall quality of construction Sturdy, heavy remote Smooth, unfatiguing sound yet provides excellent detail retrieval

Weakness:

NAD provides a bit more bass energy Volume changes using remote can be dramatic (probably related to my speaker sensitivity, ymmv) Binding posts are a joke.

I started looking for an integrated amp I could use in my office system and narrowed it down to the Azur, NAD C320bee, and Rotel RA-01. After comparing them within my system, the CA proved to best suit my needs. The Azur is a beautifully designed and built amplifier that pumps out a real 50 wpc. From an aesthetic standpoint, the NAD and Rotel aren't in the same league; with it's cool blue pin lights, wave side panels, and very solid remote, the Azur simply exudes class. The only questionable part is the inclusion of cheap binding posts. They stand out only in relief to the readily apparent quality and thought put into the rest of the unit. British eccentricities? Hmmm... The sound quality is actually quite astonishing, given the price. This little honey sounds better than my $1000 Denon receiver in my HT. Being in an office, my priority was low level resolution. Whereas some amps need a fair amount of juice to really come together, the Azur is supremely balanced and coherent from the get-go. My speakers are Mission Argonauts (95dB sensitive, 4 ohm nominal) so I rarely need to turn it up, but when I have there is plenty of head room and no sign of strain. The bass is fast, precise, and well controlled, although not as authoritive as the NAD. Midrange is smooth and treble response grainfree without a hint of sibilance. It's definitely a bonus that such an inexpensive amp can drive 4 ohm loads for 10 hours a day without becoming more than slightly warm to the touch. Bravo! Overall, a very nice unit and a bargain for the price. For my needs in my system, it was the clear choice.

Similar Products Used: NAD C320bee, Rotel RA-01
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
noddin0ff   Audio Enthusiast [May 27, 2004]

Just wanted to correct my previous review. The price paid was $349, not $379. Still positive about this integrated amp. This is a very good product which does everything well without cluttering itself up with useless features. This provides serious quality two channel sound on a budget. Worth a look.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
Showing 1-10 of 11  

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