entry level amplifier

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By today's standards, the Teletronix LA-2A Leveling Amplifier from Universal Audio appears to be a rather primitive compression device. It has only two rotary controls, one for "Gain" and one for "Peak Reduction." However, behind this plain facade lies a unique electro-optical attenuator system that allows for instantaneous gain reduction with no increase in harmonic distortion.

A tube-based compressor, the original LA-2A featured hand-wired components and an electro-luminescent optical gain reduction device that provided the fast attack necessary for broadcast applications. Additionally, the cadmium-sulfide photo-cells provided a very natural "two-stage" release which resulted in a compression characteristic more transparent than the other compressors of its day. To this day, the LA-2A delivers a trademark sound treasured by engineers worldwide.

Painstaking care has been taken to ensure that every new Teletronix LA-2A Leveling Amplifier provides the performance and characteristics of the original. Each unit is hand built and each component carefully evaluated for authenticity.

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"All it's cracked up to be...Additionally, customer service was fantastic....I use it primarily for bass and vocals, but I've thrown it on everything from drums to harmonica and it does the trick....100% glad I got it and this is one of the cheapest places on the internet to get one."

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Top Highlights

  • True to Original
  • Point-to-Point Hand Wired
  • T4 Electro-Optical Attenuator
  • Instantaneous Gain Reduction with no HD
  • Tube-Driven
  • Hand-Built in USA

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$3,799.00
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The IK Multimedia White 2A Leveling Amplifier (Download) is a dynamic processor plug-in modeled after a classic tube-based design that utilized an optically coupled element formed by a fluorescent panel and a set of photocells.

For controls, the unit allows you to set the peak reduction knob to set the limiting effect and then adjust the gain knob to control the overall output level. This results in a warm gentle compression that evens out the dynamics of tracks while preserving their musicality. The unit works well on all kinds of tracks, but especially well for vocals and bass because of the harmonics provided by the tube emulation.

The plug-in features controls for the gain, gain reduction, and peak reduction as well as reset, bypass and compress/limit switches. Both sides can be stereo linked or operated in L/R, or M/S modes. A vintage VU meter provides visual feedback of the signal processing.

The plug-in is fully compatible with native 32- and 64-bit applications on both Mac OS X (Universal Binary) and Windows (XP/Vista/7/8) computers. It supports VST, RTAS, AAX, and Audio Units plug-in formats. It can also be used with the T-RackS CS standalone application (sold separately).
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Top Highlights

  • Modeled On All-Tube Circuit Design
  • Emulates Optical Photocell Compression
  • Mid Side and Stereo Operation
  • Adjustable Gain and Peak Reduction
  • Virtual VU Level Indicator
  • Bypass and Reset
  • Supports 192 kHz Sample Rates
  • Full-Latency Compensation Support
  • 32- and 64-bit Native Compatibility
  • Mac and Windows Compatibility

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The RNLA7239 Really Nice Levelling Amplifier from FMR Audio is a stereo compressor in a 1/3 rack size with 5-parameter controls, and is designed to level a signal rather than tame every transient. It can be used on several instruments such as bass guitar, drums and other sources in need of added sonic texture.

The compressor has two 1/4" unbalanced inputs that also double as TRS inserts to mate with mixers and equipment inserts. Balanced outputs give your audio the benefit of reduced noise. Reminiscent of classic opto compressors, and is admittedly much gentler to the signal, the RNLA7239 compressor is a little resistant to responding right away, but requires the signal to be there for a while. This action adds a desirable characteristic to the source signal.

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Top Highlights

  • Stereo Compressor in 1/3 Rack Size
  • 5-Parameter Controls
  • Adds a Thickness to the Source
  • Attack & Release Controls
  • 2 x 1/4" Input/Outputs
  • 1/4" TRS Sidechain Insert
  • Rack-Mountable
  • Aluminum and Steel Enclosure

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The 500-Series, RNLA500 Really Nice Leveling Amplifier from FMR Audio is an APT500-series rack version of the popular Really Nice Leveling Amplifier. It can be used to add some compression-induced character to your vocal, bass, drum mix, and guitar audio tracks, and provides signal control in applications for recording, broadcast TV, post-production, and more.

The RNLA500 is built with overcurrent protection and prevents a rare failure from bringing down your whole 500-series rack. There is an early-warning power supply detection circuit that enters bypass and a front panel switch to avoid power-down pops. Other features include a dot, gain-reduction display, sealed, C&K toggle switches, and red-anodized, machined aluminum knobs. With the 18 gauge, electro-galvanized enclosure, it will keep the electronics safe from harm and protect against EMI interference.

Additionally, the compressor's sound exhibits a sonic neutrality and permits a level-of-control without adding unwanted artifacts. It has a sonic gooeyness that is creamy and smooth, and adds a slight hesitancy to respond, which is a key performance parameter. Although the RNLA500 is a VCA-based compressor, the algorithm controls it in a manner that puts the essence of opto-compressors in a more modern and controllable compressor. Overall, the RNLA500 is clean, but with a hint of attitude that's under your control.

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Top Highlights

  • 500-Series Version of the RNLA
  • Balanced Input and Output
  • Linkable for Stereo Operation
  • Overcurrent Protection Circuits
  • Linear & Logarithmic Release Modes
  • Dot Gain-Reduction Display
  • Red-Anodized, Machined Aluminum Knobs

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$275.00
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The DA103 from ATI Audio, part of the "NANOAMP" line, is a compact, high-quality distribution amplifier that routes one line-level signal to three outputs. Input and output signals can be balanced or unbalanced, and connections are made via phoenix-type connectors. A master gain control is provided, along with individual gain controls for each of the output channels.

The unit also has an adjustable input gain from -20 to +4 dBu. Phantom power is available, and all outputs are individually servo-balanced. At only 1/3 rack size, the DA103 is ideal where high-quality audio distribution is needed and installation size is a factor.
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Expected availability: 7-10 business days
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$475.00
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B&H # RDSTVCA3 MFR # ST-VCA3

The ST-VCA3 Voltage-Controlled Amplifier from RDL provides smooth audio-level control from a remote control panel, allowing you to adjust voltage from 0 to 10VDC. Use this unit when you need to keep audio sources and components isolated in rack, but want to extend audio controls outside of the rack and eliminate scratchy audio.

The ST-VCA3 is primarily intended for line-level attenuation and includes a high-quality utility microphone preamplifier.
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"I would buy this product again and again...Very reliable products, practically bulletproof!...Works great working at line levels without having to have a huge high-powered speaker L-pad in the wall that eventually gets scratchy sounding and dead spots."

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The STA-1 is a high quality, miniature wall and surface mount, dual-channel audio electronic line transformer and amplifier from RDL, designed for use in situations where balanced/unbalanced configuration conversion and level boost are required.

The input accepts either high or low impedance, balanced or unbalanced signals. The output will drive into either high or low impedance loads, connected either balanced or unbalanced.

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"Doesn't disappoint....Sound is clean and quiet....It's not complicated, but it's flexible."

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$148.00
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The ATI-Audio ML200 is a microphone to line level amplifier with 2 microphone inputs and line level outputs. All inputs and outputs feature balanced 3-pin XLR connectors providing optimum signal to noise ratio. The ML200 aids in applications where a mixer with dedicated microphone preamps are not present. Individual channels gain control and phantom power switches are located on the front panel. Peak LEDs indicate signal overload.
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$560.00
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The PCA2 from Pyle is a compact stereo amplifier ideal for home or mobile use. The amplifier has 2 channels each with an output power of 40W. The front-panel volume knob makes it easy to make adjustments on-the-fly, while separate bass and treble controls let you adjust tone. Input is via a stereo RCA connector, and output is via standard push speaker terminals. It also has a voltage selector switch for worldwide use.
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"Nice Amp...good amp...I loved mine so much, I bought a second one to give as a graduation gift to my nephew to take to his college dorm room!...Upon first use I detected some AC hum but a wiggle of the RCA jack at the back killed it and off I went about my testing."

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  • Extremely Compact
  • Stereo RCA Input
  • Front-Panel Volume Control
  • Treble and Bass Controls

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$34.94
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The Pyle Pro PTAU45 Mini 120 Watt x 2 Stereo Power Amplifier w/ USB/CD/Aux Inputs is an all purpose amp that works well in home, corporate and performance environments.

This amp's switchable microphone, pager and mixing modes combined with its switchable AUX1, AUX2, CD and USB inputs makes the PTAU45 a true multi-purpose amp that suits public address duty and as an amplifier for singers and musicians.

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"Good Buy...Great Amp...I really like the line level output because I am feeding the signal to another small amp for my outdoor speakers....This mini Amp is a great item for a small to medium space where full audio control is a must!"

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Top Highlights

  • 120 Watt x 2 10% RMS at 4 Ohms
  • Power on LED Indicator
  • 3.5mm Aux CD/MP3 Input Jack
  • 1/4" Front Headphones Jack
  • 1/4" Front MIC Jack w/ Volume Control
  • Master Volume Control
  • Balance Control
  • Bass and Treble Tone Control
  • Switchable AUX1/AUX2/CD/USB Input
  • Switchable MIC Pager and Mixing Modes

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$75.00
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B&H # DEHEOSAHS2SR MFR # HEOS AMP HS2SR

Add multi-room audio functionality to your speakers with the Denon HEOS Amp Series 2 Wireless Amplifier. This amplifier connects to a pair of stereo speakers and a subwoofer, delivering up to 70W per channel thanks to its Class-D amp and is capable of driving speakers rated down to 4 Ohms. It connects to your home network via Ethernet and 802.11ac Wi-Fi, mobile devices via Bluetooth and a 3.5mm stereo jack, digital sources via optical, and legacy devices via RCA. A USB port lets you connect a thumb drive or charge your mobile device. The Amp is controlled via a free app for Android and iOS or via the volume and mute controls on the side panel. The app also lets you play tracks from your smartphone or streaming sources with high-resolution audio support. The HEOS Amp can also be voice-controlled via your Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, or Josh.ai ecosystem.
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"Great Amps...Works well!...Denon really has to either let the user set a default amp for the app on each mobile device to control, or they have to make the app automatically go back the amp it last controlled until the user changes the setting....I install a lot of these units where I work, never an issue and they sound great."

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Top Highlights

  • Up to 140W of Power at 8 Ohms
  • 2.1-Channel Support
  • Wireless Music Streaming
  • Supports Bluetooth Music Streaming
  • Wi-Fi and Ethernet Connectivity
  • 3.5mm, USB, Optical, RCA Inputs
  • Multi-Room Capable
  • Free Denon HEOS Control App
  • Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, Josh.ai
  • Stream Music from Your Device, Services

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The PCA3 from Pyle is a compact stereo amplifier ideal for home or mobile use. The amplifier has 2 channels each with an output power of 75W at 4 ohms. The front-panel volume knob makes it easy to make adjustments on-the-fly, while separate bass and treble controls let you adjust tone. Bright blue LED indicators allow you to easily monitor output levels. Input is via a stereo RCA connector, and output is via standard push speaker terminals. It also has a voltage selector switch for worldwide use.
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"Works fine...Works great...Recently, I purchased 4 of these PCA3s for a sound art gallery installation to drive a series of DIY speaker objects embedded in a sculptural element and found the small amps to more than efficient....I have been using this for a month now and am very happy."

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Top Highlights

  • Extremely Compact
  • Stereo RCA Input
  • 75W @ 4 Ohms Per Channel
  • Front-Panel Volume Control
  • Treble and Bass Controls
  • LED Level Meters

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The PTA1000 from Pyle-Pro is a professional-quality rackmount power amplifier ideal for installation applications. The amplifier can operate in stereo or bridged modes for terrific versatility. The 1/4" and XLR inputs, along with speakON and binding post outputs allow you to connect the amplifier to a wide variety of audio equipment.

The front panel features individual level control knobs and LED indicators for power, signal, clipping, protection, and volume level. Internal dual-speed cooling fans with back-to-front airflow keep internal components running reliably, while protection circuitry prevents overheating and overloads. A ground-lift switch is provided to reduce hum caused by ground loops. The amplifier has a selectable operating voltage for worldwide use.
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"I like it....Cool Amp!!...This is very calm and silent amp and I am satisfied....I am using mine as main amplifier for my home stereo system with 2 15 inch 3 way speakers connected to each channel and the sound is great!!!"

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Top Highlights

  • Rackmount Design
  • Stereo and Bridged Modes
  • XLR and 1/4" Inputs
  • speakON and Binding Post Outputs
  • Dual-Speed Cooling Fans
  • Protection Circuitry
  • LED Indicators
  • Selectable Operating Voltage

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$94.12
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B&H # DEHEOSLHS2SR MFR # HEOSLINKHS2SR

Add wireless audio streaming to your existing audio system with the Denon HEOS Link Wireless Preamplifier. This device can connect to your system via its audio output connectors and it's also equipped with a subwoofer output. The HEOS Link enables multi-room audio and gives you access to a variety of audio sources.

This preamplifier features Bluetooth, dual-band Wi-Fi, and Ethernet interfaces for high-speed Internet connectivity. Using the free HEOS app for Android and iOS devices, you can wirelessly stream locally stored content and Internet radio services such as Pandora and Spotify. You can also use DLNA connectivity to stream content stored on NAS drives, Windows computers, and Macs. Additionally, digital optical, stereo RCA, 3.5mm, and USB ports are built into this system for interfacing wired audio sources such as MP3 players. The HEOS Link can be voice-controlled via your Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, or Josh.ai ecosystem.
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"Great APP....Great sound...Very good sound and I went from a full blown component system to wireless....Great product used it to bring back to life an old Amp that I love."

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Top Highlights

  • Uses Your Existing Audio System
  • Enables Wireless Music Streaming
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Connectivity
  • Built-In Ethernet
  • Free Denon HEOS Control App
  • Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, Josh.ai
  • 1 x AUX / 1 x USB / 1 x Optical-In
  • Multi-Room Capable

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$349.00
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The HA43 is for expanding or generating four additional headphone channels. It has a 1/4" TRS stereo input, four volume controls, four headphone outputs and is powered by an included AC adapter. The unit has a 20Hz to 20kHz frequency response, small size and is very easy to use.
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"Its great....I love it!...I can hear a lot of the high order harmonics dissapear when I use a cheaper lower qaulity unit that was only a few dollars less....I pull audio from a camera and then split it to two headphones and a digital recorder, for my purposes it works great."

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$50.00
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Send one HDMI signal to up to two displays with the KanexPro 1x2 HDMI Splitter. This splitter can be used to transmit content protected by HDCP, useful for Blu-ray discs and other HD content. Resolutions up to 4K are supported on inputs and outputs. The unit is built in a metal enclosure and comes with a power supply so it's ready to be used right out of the box. This version has an EDID mode for applying a set display resolution from one output to all the outputs.
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"Works fine...Works great....I am able to attach 2 25' hdmi cables and route output to both the house monitor and a smaller monitor which allows the singer to actually face the crowd....I got the KanexPro and can confirm this is a great splitter."

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  • Supports Full HD and 4K Resolutions
  • HDCP Compliant
  • Extends HDMI Signal up to 45'

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$37.99
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The Behringer MA400 is a unique and inexpensive personal monitoring headphone amplifier. The lightweight, minature unit allows for independent microphone and line level monitoring simulataneously, and accepts balanced and unbalanced 1/4" inputs with an accompanying mono/stereo monitoring switch.

The MA400 is an ingenious and cost-effective solution for rehearsal or personal practice applications, using either in-ear or standard stereo headphones.

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"Great Buy...Good product!...This little amp is a fine quality amp with a clean sound, perfect for on stage monitoring!...This really small headphone amp delivers all the power and clarity I need."

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B&H # BOSTSA5A MFR # 737253-1110

Turn your existing speakers into smart speakers with the SoundTouch SA-5 Amplifier from Bose This amplifier can deliver up to 100W per channel and can accommodate up to 4 speakers. The SoundTouch SA-5 amplifier features Wi-Fi and Ethernet interfaces for high-speed Internet connectivity. Using the free SoundTouch app for Android, iOS, and Kindle Fire devices, you can wirelessly stream locally stored content and Internet radio services such as Pandora, Deezer, iHeartRadio, Spotify, iTunes, and Internet radio. Integrated Bluetooth connectivity allows you to pair and wirelessly stream music from similarly equipped devices. 3.5mm and dual stereo inputs are also on-board for interfacing wired music sources.
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"Thank you...Amazing --...After using this amplifier for slightly over a month, here are my pros and cons: (Used together with BOSE 251 environmental speaker set) PROS: - small footprint - stays cool even when driven hard - great idea, ideal for a secondary amplifier for additional room or porch, not as the main amplifier....The unit works as advertised but like others I was disappointed to find that the A and B speakers cannot operate independently and I had to buy an additional switch to accomplish this."

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Top Highlights

  • Enables Wireless Music Streaming
  • 2-Channel Stereo Design
  • Up to 100W Per Channel
  • Wi-Fi & Ethernet Connectivity
  • Access Music Streaming Services
  • Wireless Bluetooth Connectivity
  • SoundTouch Control App for Smart Devices
  • 2 x Stereo RCA-In / 1 x 3.5mm-In
  • Multi-Room Capable
  • Wall-Mountable Design

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The PCA1 from Pyle is a compact stereo amplifier ideal for home or mobile use. The amplifier has 2 channels each with an output power of 15W at 4 Ohms. The front-panel volume knob makes it easy to make adjustments on-the-fly. Input is via stereo RCA connectors, and output is via standard push speaker terminals. It also has a voltage selector switch for worldwide use.
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"Works great....Great Mini Amp...Music to my ears (literally...)Even when I pushed the tunes to 75%, the amp added nothing but gain (any more juice, and the missus would have me continuing the aural excitement in the garage....Ordered this on a whim, and I have to say I'm very happy with it."

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  • Extremely Compact
  • Stereo RCA Inputs
  • Front-Panel Volume Control

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The PHA40 4-Channel Stereo Headphone Amplifier from Pyle-Pro is a compact and lightweight stereo headphone amplifier that allows up to 4 users to listen to the same audio signal. The amp has a stereo 1/4" input jack and a set of 4 stereo 1/4" outputs. Each output has its own level control knob, letting users set their ideal volume level individually. There is a red power LED to provide visual indication that the unit is receiving power. It operates on 12VDC power via the included power supply.
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"It Works...Works well....I do wish it came with a few 1/4 to 1/8 adapters, but those are fairly cheap on there own if you need them....Great for a silent studio, not great when you are playing a show and need a cheap wired in-ear."

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Top Highlights

  • Compact Design
  • 1/4" Stereo Jacks
  • Individual Level Controls
  • Power LED
  • Power Supply Included

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$19.00
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