Soul to Sole Audio is the Official New Zealand Importer and Distributor of the iconic Sugden range of Class A Amplifiers and CD Players.
All the Sugden Amplifiers run in pure Class A mode which means more heat output than a normal Class A-B amplifier and lower on-paper power output. What it also means is no switching distortion and a clarity of sound that you did not know was possible.
Many of the Sugden reviewers talk about “musicality” being the strength of the Sugden Hi Fi equipment. This is what you surely want your Hi Fi to do. Play your music “musically”. Not to scare the dog or annoy the neighbours but to replay your precious music collection back to you wiith maximum enjoyment.
There is proud manufacturing history here too. Each Amplifier and CD Player is hand-assembled in Sugden’s Yorkshire assembly plant from start to finish by one person. From the look and feel of this equipment these are obviously individuals that take pride in their work.
As Dec 2007 issue of “Hi Fi World” said in awarding the A21a Series 2 winner status in a group test: “When I plugged in the Sugden I realized I was simply enjoying the music.”
Sometimes it’s just that simple.
Sugden A21a Series 2 Amplifier
The original A21 first saw light of day in 1969 and with upgrades and improvements along the way been in uninterrupted manufacture up to the present day. This is because it was, and still is, an astoundingly fine sounding amplifier.
Running in pure Class A it plays your music with a purity and openness that normal solid-state amplifiers just cannot do. If you are looking at spending anywhere near this price point these are an absolute must-listen.
“Hi Fi World” August 2007 said:
“Class A without tears, this new incarnation adds power and control to the A21a’s traditional transparency and musical ease. Gorgeous.”
“Ultra Hi Fidelity” December 2007 said:
I was expecting a good, honest performance, something that would make me feel good, as Sugden used to. But not this. Not something that would even cast doubts about some aspects of our reference system.
“Hi Fi Choice” said:
The Sugden combo draws its strength from a classic amp design. One which, for sheer musicality, showed a clean pair of heels to every other amp in the group. The CD player’s no slouch, either.
Together they work beautifully and look rather smart. A revelation and clear Best Buy.
Sugden A21SE Amplifier
The new A21 SE is more than just an up-rated A21a. The A21SE provides increased power availability and stiffness with low impedance characteristics to give the amplifier greater load tolerance.
The A21SE has all the magic of the A21a Series 2 but with more power on tap adds more ‘weight” to the musical performance. It will drive all but the most inefficient speakers with ease.
Like all the Sugden Amplifier and CD Player combinations the A21SE and Fusion 21 CD Player are a “Dream-team”. Engineered specifically to work perfectly with each other, you get more than “the sum of the parts”.
“Hi Fi World” said of the A21SE: “Musically brilliant is the best way I can describe it…do yourself a favour and hear something that has nearly all of the strengths of tube amplifiers and almost none of the vices. Gorgeous.
Review of the Sugden A21SE Review Hi Fi World May 2005
Sugden Masterclass IA-4 Integrated Amplifier and PDT-4 CD Player
The mighty Sugden Masterclass Integrated Amplifier and matching PDT-4 CD Player.
An absolutely feather-like delicacy in the treble and smooth clarity in the midrange allied to a mighty punch and weight in the bass that has to be heard to be believed!
And once again so “musical”! Your music sounding so “right” in a way you have never heard it sound before.
“Hi Fi World” December 2007 said of the Masterclass IA4 Integrated Amplifier: “Rarely have I heard an integrated amplifier that dives into any given piece of music, throws out so much detail and yet strings it together in such a musically satisfying way.” “…the overall verdict is one of wide-eyed admiration for a glorious integrated amplifier.”
Review of the Sugden Masterclass Hi Fi World December 2007
Sugden Masterclass Series
The Masterclass Series is the pinnacle of Sugden’s 40 years of audio equipment manufacture.
All running in pure Class A up to the 150 watt MPA-4 Balanced Power Amplifiers.
A21SE Stage One Phono Stage
The A21SE Stage One has some useful features and an excellent specification. Housed in a heavy weight compact case, the single input will accept both Moving Magnet and Moving Coil cartridges. There is an internal adjustment for gain and the circuit is able to recognise the input impedance and adjust accordingly. Unusually for a design at this price the circuit is totally discrete enabling us to tailor the output transistors for the best possible sound, combining it with a high gain front-end. As the circuit is single ended like the A21SE amplifier, there is now an LTVS low tension voltage supply facility on the rear panel of the A21SE amplifier. This three pin socket provides a high current power supply for the Stage One.
The A21SE Stage One Phono Stage is designed specifically to work with the A21SE Amplifier. It draws it’s power from the amplifier and does not have a seperate power supply
A21SE Stage Two Phono Stage
The Stage Two phono amplifier was developed to offer true high-end phono amplification in a compact, heavy weight, minimalist two box design (above). Splitting the amplification from the power supply helps reduce interference and increase resistance to pickup and noise. There is a single input that accepts both Moving Magnet and Moving Coil cartridges. Input selection is internal together with adjustments for 47K, 100 and 470-Ohm impedance settings. The input of the Stage Two is a Low noise, low distortion instrumentation amplifier. Current feedback circuitry achieves wide bandwidth and an excellent dynamic response. This circuit has been combined with a dual FET-input, low distortion operational amplifier with excellent dynamic response and low noise.
For more info or to purchase contact Soul to Sole Audio