The Emotiva brand has caused a major headache among amplifier brands, thanks to their attention to premium sound quality while offering their devices at a budget-friendly price, and this case applies to the TA-100.
The Emotiva brand is growing in popularity, which is not surprising as they aim to seriously modify their audio products and sell them directly to customers at affordable prices. This makes their products highly sought after, including the TA-100.
The Emotiva TA-100 is part of the BasX line of Emotiva electronics, which spans in its range from power amplifiers, speakers, home theater equipment, and stereo separates. The company behind them is well-known for engineering their products extensively and then selling them directly to consumers through their website or on Amazon at affordable prices, and the same principle applies to the TA-100.
Emotiva TA-100 Review and Breakdown
- Contains inputs for all audio sources, which include USB digital inputs, coax, Toslink, and phono analog inputs
- Audiophile performance standard: 50W RMS per channel at 8 ohms, 90W RMS per channel at 4 ohms
Expect plenty of value for your money with the TA-100, thanks to its inclusion of optical digital inputs and coax inputs for your digital stereo, stereo preamp with analog inputs, an FM tuner, and a USB DAC input. Its internal DAC uses a DAC chip, specifically a high-quality Analog Device AD1955 24/192 chip.
The most impressive feature it showcases is an intelligent headphone control that remembers your preferred levels of your main outputs, such as headphones. It also includes a high-current headphone amp that gives a 114mw output into your headphones, as well as a connection if you want to incorporate an AptX Bluetooth input module, and a moving coil or magnet cartridge.
- The sound quality is excellent with the output being very forward and big
- Very premium build quality
- It includes an in-built tuner and digital inputs
- Lacks in-built streaming capabilities
- The remote is slightly confusing to use (at first)
Emotiva TA-100 specifications
|Dimensions (in inches)||17 x 2.6 x 12.5 inches|
|Output power||50W per channel|
90W per channel
|Availability||Check Price Here|
Emotiva TA-100 Features
This amplifier offers you the kind of performance you may expect from more expensive options, which is particularly impressive when you consider the price point it comes at. It has a very good differentiation of soundstages, as we saw when playing songs such as Bandit-Gallop by Johan Strauss – it gives a performance output that remains comfortable throughout and the depth it adds is superior to pricier options.
Its treble quality is also light without exaggerating the feedback, providing warm impressions, although it does have its limits as it is a 50-watt machine.
The amplifier has plenty of digital and analog inputs, while providing high resolution. Therefore, if you happen to own a DAC or older CD player, you will experience a superior sound quality when you choose to use the inputs, especially the digital one over the analog one, although the difference is not as much when comparing the two.
The TA-100 includes a phono preamp that has support for both moving coil and moving magnet cartridges, as well as a high-current headphone amp that outputs 114mw into 300-ohm headphone pair, as well as a port to connect an AptX Bluetooth input module.
You can instantly tell that the TA-100 is a serious piece of machinery, as it is comprised of a heavy-duty steel chassis and an aluminum faceplate.
The display is impressive as well, since it has an illuminated power button, as well as a VFD display that is dimmable and easy to read. Aside from the amp itself, the remote is also well-designed, with its buttons easy to press. The only issue with the remote is the insufficient markings to inform you of what the buttons do, forcing you to rely on the manual longer than you may like.
Who is it best suited for?
If you are on a tight budget and are looking for an amplifier that provides excellent sound quality, the TA-100 is a great choice for you. It also provides a performance that supersedes its price point, with detailed soundscapes and impressive lows.
Are there any alternatives to the Emotiva TA-100?
The Marantz PM6007 is the most obvious alternative in terms of integrated amplifier choices, although it lacks Bluetooth input unlike the Emotiva TA-100. Another option is the Cambridge CXA81, although it is more expensive – but you will not mind it much as it offers plenty of digital inputs. A third option to consider is the Rega Brio, which is another budget option but lacks digital inputs.
Features of alternatives for Emotiva TA-100
|Model||Marantz PM6007||Cambridge Audio CXA81||Rega Brio|
|Power||45W per channel||80W per channel||50W|
|Dimensions (inches)||14.6 x 17.3 x 4.1 inches||13.4 x 16.9 x 4.5 inches||13.6 x 8.5 x 3.1 inches|
|Digital inputs||Optical, Coaxial||Toslink, PDIF/S coaxial||None|
|Availability||Check Price Here||Check Price Here||Check Price Here|
Watch this video for more on the Emotiva TA-100 specifications
Verdict: Should you get the Emotiva TA-100?
For its price point, this is an excellent choice of an amplifier. It is sturdy in build, and there are plenty of nice touches like its volume management features and easy-to-read display that make it a pleasure to use. Its sound quality is also exciting and full, and will pair well with plenty of measured speakers.
Can you use a stereo power amp and powered subwoofer simultaneously with the TA-100?
No, as you can only use the TA-100 as a pre-amplifier and a DAC. You can connect it to a subwoofer and stereo pre-amp outputs that run on amplifiers, but this is not necessary in all cases.
Can the TA-100 run on both 220V and 110V?
Yes, it can handle both voltages.
Can you use the Emotiva TA-100 to adjust bass and treble?
Yes, you can. While it does not have physical dials, you can use its menu system to adjust the two.