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CLONES Audio 25p Power Amplifier Review Print E-mail
Tuesday, 29 July 2014
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CLONES Audio 25p Power Amplifier Review
Set Up and Listening
ImageHaving travelled to Hong Kong several years ago, I was surprised to see a large number of high-end audio shops filled with hifi aficionados. Mainland China has been an audiophile hub for decades now, with hundreds of homegrown brands and of course factories set up by many well-known Western brands. Recently, China has been exporting excellent gear designed and built there, not as hired hands. Brands such as AURALiC and Line Magnetic, just to name a few, have been causing quite a stir.

I heard about CLONES Audio, based in Hong Kong, from an industry veteran with very discerning taste. He had a CLONES Audio 25i integrated amplifier he wanted me to hear and, when I did, I was very impressed, and wrote about it for another publication. I subsequently wrote about the CLONES SHEVA DSD DAC and, again, was mighty tickled.

 A fellow named Funjoe runs CLONES Audio. The basis of his amplification products are the Gainclone designs made popular by Japanese firm, 47 Labs. Gainclone designs are known for simplicity, short signal path, and the need for fewer components than other circuit types. This also allows Gainclone amplifiers to be housed in a smaller case. They are extremely popular with the DIY community as well.

I received in for review the 25p power amplifier. Actually the 25p and 25i are very similar, but the integrated version has a passive input with volume attenuation and source selection. The 25p sells for $740, and is represented in the US by Northto35, who are diligently establishing a dealer network.

The 25p is housed in rugged, beautiful black casework. The workmanship is astonishing at this price point. This is not a mass produced product off an assembly line. The speaker binding posts and RCA inputs are of superb quality. There are three sturdy spiked feet attached to the bottom. The amplifier is the size of large square tissue box, and weighs less than 9 Lbs. The 25p, as its name suggests, outputs 25 watts per channel into 8 ohms.


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