This success is in no small part due to the guiding influence of Marantz's 'golden-eared guru', Ken Ishiwata, whose passion for all things musical has hugely influenced the philosophy of the brand and the design of its products. This is particularly so with the company's top end output, where Ken is given 'free rein' to indulge himself, producing stereo products that can hold themselves up against the very best from Europe, as well as being finished exquisitely, in a way that most European manufacturers can only dream of. Five minutes spent with Ken's latest 'babies', the new Premium SA-14S1 SE CD player and PM-14S1 SE amp is enough to tell you that you are in the presence of something very special. From both a construction and sound quality point of view, this is great Hi-Fi - lovely to behold and an absolute joy to own.
The PM-14S1 Special Edition amp weighs in at a staggering 19.1 Kg (nearly 3 stone!) and features a massive toroidal transformer, heavy copper plated dual symmetric circuit boards, a plethora of custom designed components, solid pure copper speaker terminals, 2 x 90 Watt output (2 x 140 Watt into 4 Ohm), 5 line level inputs, a phono input (MM and MC), twin record out, a pre out and a power in (for easy incorporation of the amp into an AV system), selective high quality tone controls (with direct bypass), a high quality on-board headphone amp and a lovely aluminium faced remote control.
This meticulous attention to detail is mirrored in sound quality, because seconds after firing up the PM-14S1 SE, you are aware of two things - it's incredibly smooth, detailed delivery and the immense power reserves it can draw on. No matter what you put with it speaker-wise, you get the same totally controlled, rock solid delivery, with no nasty edges or extremes. Pure, silky smooth class at all volumes - from whisper quiet to concert level, this amp is 'unflappable', always allowing the music to shine through. And this amp doesn't just sound wonderful - it looks wonderful, too. The curved brushed aluminium front fascia features a lovely 'retro styled' central display, flanked by two vertical rows of feature buttons, each illuminated by a beautiful cobalt blue glow. Even the remote is a work of art. This amp really needs to be seen to be fully appreciated - it is Hi-Fi as it 'should be', many purists would say. And they'd be right!
Power Output (8 / 4 Ohm RMS) 90 W / 140 W Frequency Response 5 Hz-100 kHz Total Harmonic Distortion 0.02 % Damping Factor 100 Input Sensitivity: MM 2.7 mV / 47 kOhm Input Sensitivity: MC 270 µV / 100 ohm Signal to Noise Ratio: MM / MC 86 / 75 dB Input Sensitivity: High level 240 mV / 20 kOhm Signal to Noise Ratio: High level 106 dB (2V input) Input Sensitivity: Power Amp Direct IN 1,7V / 20 kohm Signal to Noise Ratio: Power Amp Direct IN 125 dB