EXCLUSIVE: Arcam unveils feature-packed A19 amplifier and rBlink Bluetooth receiver

Following an exclusive product briefing with Arcam, we can now reveal details on two brand new products: the A19 stereo amplifier and the rBlink Bluetooth receiver.

Priced at £650 and boasting 50W per channel, the FMJ A19 will arrive in November. It’s a brand new design, based on the Cambridge company’s high-end FMJ platform.

The A19 features a headphone stage, which Arcam claims to be the equivalent to a £150 standalone headphone amp. And, such is the size of the headphone market, Arcam believes the amp is versatile enough to drive a wide range of models.

There’s a suite of analogue inputs for connecting external kit and the FMJ A19 also features a moving magnet (mm) phono stage for vinyl-lovers.

Uniquely at this price, the A19 has also been fitted with a snubbing filter, to prevent any connected speaker cable from turning into an antenna and attracting interference from any wireless networks in close vicinity.

Also of interest is the upgrade path offered by the A19. As well as the amp’s own power supply, there’s a second dedicated, internal power supply to drive products from Arcam’s own rSeries.

This means devices such as the Arcam rDAC, rPAC and the forthcoming rBlink can be powered using a 2.1mm power connector packaged with the amp.

rBlink and you’ll miss it

The second new product Arcam unveiled is the rBlink, a Bluetooth-toting wireless receiver, first shown at the start of the year but finally made official and due on sale next month.

It can handle standard Bluetooth streams but the rBlink also handles the superior aptX codec – good news for owners of compatible smartphones, such as the Samsung Galaxy S3 as higher bitrates can be streamed for theoretically superior sound.

As mentioned above you’ll be able to power it using Arcam’s new FMJ A19 stereo amp. But if you don’t own the amp, there’s always mains power.

The rBlink will be available to buy for £150 in November from Arcam’s online rShop.

We'll be getting our hands on the products in the next few weeks so look out for the full review treatment on both.

Follow whathifi.com on Twitter

Join whathifi.com on Facebook

Joe Cox
Content Director

Joe is the Content Director for What Hi-Fi? and Future’s Product Testing, having previously been the Global Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi?. He has worked on What Hi-Fi? across the print magazine and website for almost 20 years, writing news, reviews and features on everything from turntables to TVs, headphones to hi-fi separates. He has covered product launch events across the world, from Apple to Technics, Sony and Samsung; reported from CES, the Bristol Show, and Munich High End for many years; and written for sites such as the BBC, Stuff, and the Guardian. In his spare time, he enjoys expanding his vinyl collection and cycling (not at the same time).