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The Arcam is a versatile and convincing all rounder that combines good connectivity with an engaging and rewarding performance.


  • Refined yet energetic sound
  • Flexible connectivity
  • Decent build and aesthetics


  • Best performance contingent on speaker choice
  • Flap over inputs is annoying
  • Bluetooth performance solid but unspectacular

Key Features

  • Turntable playbackMoving magnet phono stage
  • ConnectivityExtensive selection of analogue and digital inputs
  • Power100 watt Class G amplifier


Few companies have been as admirably consistent at delivering on an idea as Arcam has been when it comes to hi-fi separates. The company has long worked to the principle of offering something that was more than the bare bones spec of many rivals and did so while striving to ensure that it looked a little smarter than the competition too.

The Radia A25 is the latest device built to these ideals. It’s the most expensive of the amps in the Radia family (for now at least…) and it combines some interesting technology from the company with a healthy selection of inputs and freshly re-styled casework.

Of course, while Arcam can be recognised as one of the creators of the modern integrated amplifier, their rivals have become very adept at building them too. Is this still the one to go for or have others learned to play the game better?


The Arcam is available in the UK for £1,499 and enjoys usefully wide retail availability meaning you shouldn’t have to travel too far to find one. US customers can expect to pay $1,499 for the A25 (a price helped by Arcam now being owned and operated by Harman International) and in the Australian market, it will set you back $2,995 AUD.

There is no shortage of similarly specced rivals to the Arcam at this sort of price point. Something that’s important to bear in mind with amplifiers at this price point in 2024 is that they encompass everything from a stripped back device with a row of analogue inputs, all the way to something which is basically an all in one system in all but name.

As I’ll cover, the Arcam splits the difference between these points; doing more than a number of key rivals but still benefitting from source equipment so this is something to remember when setting a budget.


  • New ‘Radia’ casework
  • Large Display
  • Rear inputs mounted under a lip

Over the years, Arcam has styled their affordable range of devices in a variety of different ways but what united all of them is that they all reflect the time they were developed in. The Radia models are no exception to this.

As hinted at in the name, you’ll find rounded casework that uses a clamshell style design for the top panel. The front is dominated by two large control knobs and a display that is quite cleverly integrated because, until it lights up, you would have little to no idea that it’s there.

Arcam Radia A25 menu display
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The most notable decision is the use of yellow for highlights and a limited amount of illumination which, if not done right, could have looked rather grim. Having spent some time with the review unit, I rather like it. It’s different without being so weird that the A25 looks out of place with other devices. Arcam should be commended for trying something new and no less enthusiastically endorsed for bolting everything together in a confidence inspiring way too.

One aspect of the design is less welcome though. The A25 puts its Bluetooth aerial inside a lip at the back of the casework that covers the inputs. These tend to look smart in pictures but they make connecting things to the Arcam harder than it needs to be which isn’t helped by the inputs on the back panel being arranged in a slightly haphazard fashion. Once you’re connected up, you should be fine but that’s a little harder than it needs to be.

Arcam Radia A25 remote control
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The remote control is logical enough to use once you remember that you need to press enter to select an input rather than the A25 automatically selecting it when you reach that connection in the cycle.


  • Class G amplifier
  • Digital inputs with Bluetooth
  • Phono stage and headphone amp

As the A25 is top of the tree in the Radia range it is by far the most technically interesting and sophisticated of the models on sale. While the others are conventional Class AB amplifiers, the A25 makes use of Arcam’s Class G circuit. Class G is specific to Arcam; they have a patent for it and it’s only found in their amps.

Arcam Radia A25 lettering
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

In essence, it delays the point where the circuit switches from pure Class A operation into Class B by using a complete second power supply to help bridge this crossover point. This amp stage supplies the A25 with 100 watts of power rising into 165 into four ohms. This is more than the SA20 it replaces and entirely competitive with the sort of amps that the Arcam is going up against.

Also a step forward over the older models is the digital board. Arcam has been fitting digital inputs to their amps for a while now but the A25 ups the functionality. As well as two coaxial and one optical inputs, the Arcam gains a USB audio input (on a micro C connection) and aptX HD Bluetooth for quick and easy streaming.

Decoding is via ES9280A PRO DAC and regardless of what the spec sheet says, the Arcam has handled sample rates up to 768kHz on test. DSD is also supported to a heady 22.4MHz (or ‘lots’ if you’re not up to speed with this most niche of digital formats). HDMI ARC would have been a welcome extra addition but otherwise the Arcam gets a fair bit done.

Arcam Radia A25 connectivity
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

This digital board is supported by decent spread of analogue connections. There are three line level inputs, all on an RCA connection and a moving magnet phono stage. This is something that Arcam has fitted to their integrated amps from the outset and that greatly simplifies use with a turntable, not least because historically, it’s been rather good. A preout is also present to simplify use with a preamp or when attaching a subwoofer and you get a headphone amp on a 3.5mm jack.

This is a decent spread of connections but it does leave the Arcam slightly confused about what it is. It has more connectivity than more traditional rivals that are designed to work with source equipment possess… but it still needs help to get a signal to the digital board where something with a full streaming board won’t. The spec is flexible though and there isn’t much that the Arcam won’t talk to and speak at the same sort of price it will struggle with.

Arcam Radia A25 casing
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Sound Quality

  • Lively but ultimately forgiving presentation
  • Excellent integration of the digital board
  • Solid vinyl replay

One of the reasons why Arcam became the force that they have in this category is down to how their amps balanced the need to be exciting, punchy and something that pulls you into the music being played while also making sure that the less the perfect bits of your music collection doesn’t put your teeth on edge. It was a balance they struck brilliantly and the A25 hasn’t forgotten this same trick.

Give the A25 a good recording like Public Service Broadcasting’s The Race for Space and the manner in which it handles E.V.A is genuinely engaging. There’s enough energy to the ‘not quite rock, not quite a break’ percussion to engage you and it overlays the layered strings and guitar that make up the main instruments over the top with a smoothness and richness that helps them sound entirely convincing. This all the positive aspects of ‘hi-fi’ and it’s delivered with an effortlessness that means you don’t fixate on the technical aspects of what’s happening but lock into the music instead.

Arcam Radia A25 dial up close
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

When you move to something less sympathetically mastered like Ritual by White Lies and the Arcam does an excellent job of the other part of the brief. The ballistic Holy Ghost is a cracking song but one that constantly feels compressed and lacking in headroom. The Arcam does a very neat job of keeping the fury and punch of the track but softening that grainy and compressed edge. There is very little that the A25 can’t make listenable.

This applies both to the analogue connections but also to the digital board. Running an Eversolo DMP-A8 streamer into the Arcam over RCA initially but then switching it to send a signal to the A25’s USB input reveals that the Arcam’s digital board has been configured in such a way as to avoid changing the basic character of the amp itself. If you like what the Arcam does, it will do it with admirable consistency across its multiple connections.

Not everything is quite so accomplished though. I don’t feel that the Bluetooth connection is the best of the breed. Used via an Oppo Find X5 which has excellent Bluetooth, it still feels a little soft and safe. I also feel that the headphone output is something you could see fit to using now and again but it wouldn’t be my first choice for a 50/50 split.  

Arcam Radia A25 close up detail
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

How much you like what the Arcam does will also depend slightly on your speaker choice. With some perfectly capable speakers at this sort of price point, I have found that that joyous edge can be suppressed a bit and leave the Arcam sounding fractionally safe but testing both with the slightly more expensive Neat Petite Classic (£2,000) and the slightly less expensive Mission 700 (£1,300) garnered very good results from the Arcam and allowed it to do its ‘refined excitement’ trick very well.

One bit of additional functionality is rather more impressive though. The phono stage in the A25 is a development of one that has been in use in Arcam amps for a very long time but it isn’t broke so doesn’t need fixing. It is more than up to the job of supporting a similarly priced turntable and ensuring you’d feel no rush to add to an external design. Listening to Leftfield’s immortal Leftism via a Rega Planar 10 and Vertere Sabre cartridge into the Arcam’s phono stage saw the amp do justice both to this mighty album and the quality of the attached hardware. The beautiful electronic bump at the start of Melt is delivered with weight, texture and tone and it’s truly lovely to listen to.

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Should you buy it?

A question of balance

The Arcam has a good spread of functionality and it proceeds to offer more than respectable performance across the vast majority of it. Across a wide selection of use cases, the A25 will hold its own against rivals and deliver decent flexibility and a consistently engaging performance.

Jack of all trades?

The Arcam faces stiff competition both from amps that do more… and that do less. If you have decent source equipment, more focussed rivals can offer higher performance when you connect them in that way. Conversely, if you don’t have much source equipment, rivals that genuinely are one box systems might make more sense. In trying to please everyone, it’s possible that the Arcam won’t please you at all.

Final Thoughts

Arcam’s experience in offering products that combine good performance with real world flexibility is apparent in the A25 which is a considered evolution of what the company has been doing well for forty years.

If you don’t know exactly how your system will develop in the years to come, the A25 is able to offer multiple options in terms of connectivity that should see you right. It’s a safe choice that sounds consistently engaging while it does so. 

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How we test

We test every amplifier we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

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Tested over several days

Tested with real world use


Does the Arcam Radia A25 support Bluetooth streaming?

You can stream to the A25 via Bluetooth with aptX HD support.

Full specs

Size (Dimensions)
Integrated Phono Stage
Release Date
Amplifier Type
Frequency Range
Stated Power
Remote Control

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