Rotel A11 Tribute Review (2022)

Even though it is an analogue amplifier, this device comes with some of the best and most futuristic features that allow it sound output which is exceptional. Its clever design makes sure you can benefit in the most profound way.

When the legendary Ken Ishiwata took on the Rotel A11, he did not know it would be his last project as a Sound Engineer. He had poured his heart and soul into the amplifier, and he died in 2019, just before the launch of this device. It was only fitting that the owners of this company call it the Tribute in his honor, and this is how it became the Rotel A11 Tribute Integrated Amplifier.

Rotel A11 Tribute Integrated Amplifier Breakdown and Review

Before delving into the specifics of this amplifier, it is important to note that it was originally designed and built more than three decades ago, and that the current version is an upgrade from the original device.

What is most interesting about the Rotel A11 Tribute is that it is a fully analogue amplifier, save for the fact that it is actually Bluetooth enabled. This comes as quite the surprise when you consider the amount of money at which it retails ($800). This integrated amplifier is a Class A-B design, and it is engineered to deliver up to 50Wpc when both of its channels are driven into 8Ω, and with a total harmonic distortion of less than 0.03%.

One of the characteristics that stands out the most about this integrated amplifier is the fact that it is able to produce massive and beautiful sounds that are filled with depth of tone. They are also, quite impressively, very crisp and clear, with minimal interference and distortion.

Even though analogue, the Rotel A11 Tribute Integrated Amplifier comes with a myriad of features that make it quite unique. One of them is a set of balanced controls that prove easy to use, and that make the device pretty easy to run and operate. In addition, it comes with an Off-Timer which kicks in in the event you fail to use the system for a specified duration of time. It comes with up to 5 off timer choices that range from 20 minutes, an hour, two hours, 5 hours and 12 hours.

Moreover, this device, analogue as it is, supports remote control. It presents with a remote control that lays all the controls and functions of the entire device on one easy to access panel. If you like to listen to your music on headphones, it comes with a 3.5mm jack in the front panel that gives you easy and quick access.

Pros
  • Very simple design
  • Supports remote control
  • Produces big clear and crisp sounds
  • Comes with Off-Timer function
  • Supports Bluetooth streaming
Cons
  • The remote control is outdated
  • Uninspiring monochrome display

View price here

 

Rotel A11 Tribute Integrated Amplifier Specifications

Model Rotel A11 Tribute
Type Class A/B integrated amplifier
Continuous Power Output50W per channel
Total Harmonic Distortion <0.03%
Bluetooth streamingAvailable
Phono stage Available
Dimensions 17 x 3.6 x 13.5 inches
Weight 15lb (6.85 Kg)
Key features Analogue, remote controlled, produces big sounds, minimal distortion, easy to use
Availability See Price Here

Rotel A11 Tribute Integrated Amplifier Features

Design and Build

As earlier mentioned, the current available model is an upgrade of the original device that was developed and built more than two decades ago. That said, it is important to note that during the upgrade, not much changed about the way this device looks.

  • retro look, with a rectangular physique that does not say too much
  • surprisingly large, measuring in at 17 x 3.6 x 13.5 inches
  • goes without saying that this device has a large footprint, and you would need a good deal of space to install it
  • hard plastic housing that has the capacity to withstand a good deal of use over a long time

The front panel of this amplifier is fitted with all the controls you need, meaning that you can easily operate it even when you do not have the remote control. It also has a 3.5m jack that allows access for your headphones. You can switch it on and off, change the CD, increase or reduce the volume and see different settings on a small display panel.

The back panel houses all the inlet and outlet ports, and you can connect up to 4 speakers at the same time.

Performance

As earlier mentioned, this device is able to produce incredible sound when paired with various speakers. It comes with two custom tone profiles named Tone Rotel Boost and Tone Rotel Max. These two are designed to deliver deep bass and add loads of depth to music. However, for people looking to listen to the details in the music as they play, the Tone Bypass setting, which is the default, prove best.

You will find that there is a signature warmth and liveliness that is characteristics of every piece developed by Ken Ishiwata, and this device is no exception.

Who is it best suited for?

This device is best suited for people who like big and full sounds that have loads of clarity and depth. It is also excellent for people who would like to own a future classic piece developed by a legend.

Are there alternatives to the Rotel A11 Tribute?

In place of the Rotel A11, you can use such integrated amplifiers as Marantz PM 8006 Integrated Amp, NAD D 3020 Hybrid Integrated Amp and NAD C 316BEE Integrated Amp which are high performance devices that are excellent for big sound.

Features of alternative integrated amplifiers

Model Marantz PM 8006 Integrated AmpNAD D 3020 Hybrid Integrated AmpNAD C 316BEE Integrated Amp
TypeDigital Integrated amplifierIntegrated amplifierIntegrated amplifier
Phono StageAvailableAvailableAvailable
Bluetooth connectivityAvailableAvailableAvailable
Availability Check Price HereCheck Price HereCheck Price Here

Verdict: So, should you buy the Rotel A11 Tribute?

Yes, you should. Even though it is an analogue amplifier, this device is built to make sure that you receive exceptional sound quality that is big and clear, and that also has a beautiful warmth and liveliness. You will find that it is well worth the money.

FAQs

Does the Rotel A11 Tribute come with a CD player?

Yes, it does. However, it comes as a separate unit called the Rotel CD 11 and it has to be bought separately.

What colors does this amplifier come in?

You can get black and silver Rotel A11 Tribute amplifiers from the manufacturer.

Andrew Gibbons

According to Andrew Gibbons, playing the guitar is fun but it will take a few months before you can come up with a creative expression. Gibbons is a guitar instructor and has been teaching University music programs for over a decade, when it comes to playing the guitar a lot of factors come into play that determines the type of sounds produced. The guitarist must consider the guitar's neck and body shape, weight, and string type, the amp is also a primary determinant of the sounds produced and that is why Gibbons has created extensive excerpts detailing on the delicate topic. Guitarists must also pick a pose, be it the pro, wizard, hipster, or the old master.