Review of Hi-Fi amplifier Rotel RA-1592MKII

Review of Hi-Fi amplifier Rotel RA-1592MKII

Photo Credits: Rotel/Promo

Although this may not appear to be the world, history, or world, Rotel is still a family business - not in the sense that only family members are involved in product creation and manufacturing, but since its foundation over 60 years ago.

For many years, the Tachikawa family has overseen the company, determining its direction and, eventually, the Rotel's sound style. This implies that they "have their fingers" even in the most recent generation of products with the suffix MKII at the end.

The MKII version makes no significant changes to the technique, which (based on our previous experience) significantly affects the individual models - for the better. The RA-1592, the "bigger of the large" integrated amplifiers (the second being the RA-1572MKII), were also available in the second generation.

It's a traditional Rotel with a clean and somewhat technically designed front panel - the RA-1592MKII may not look super-modern (Rotel has the MICHI series), but that's because it retains lines created for the original generation six to seven years ago. However, the industrial efficiency without shards is pleasant - there is a modest but useful display in the center, below which are twelve buttons for easy access to all inputs.

To the right is a blue-circled volume control with a straightforward operation, and below it are four more adjustment buttons. On the left side, there is a power button (again with a blue halo), a 3.5 mm headphone output, and a useful USB input, however it is confined to Apple devices. There are two more little buttons next to it that switch between set A and B from the speaker terminals.

If you look at the polished sides of the front panel, you'll see a cover with several cooling holes, and then you'll reach the back panel, which is literally dotted with various connectors. The largest is unmistakably reproterminals, placed in a single horizontal line at the device's bottom border. The "floor" in the center is dedicated to analog connectivity, with three cinch and one XLR inputs, a phono input for turntables, a pair of outputs, one classic stereo pre-out, and two monaural subwoofer outputs.

At the top is digital connectivity, which includes three optics and three coaxes, as well as Bluetooth and USB type B. It's a shame that the built-in Ethernet adapter is only for practical purposes such as updating and controlling and does not support streaming.

The RA-1592MKII also features a wide range of "smart" connectivity, with control available via the RS232 interface, Rotel Link (input and output, via which Rotel devices can exchange control instructions), and three tiny jacks. One is for an external remote control sensor, while the other two are for initiating external components with a regular 12V supply.

And what is hiding inside an almost 18-kilogram cat with dimensions of 43.1 cm in width, 14.4 cm in height, and 42.5 cm in depth? A massive toroidal transformer is located in the center; Rotel is proud to design and produce its own transformers. Everything else is on two floors of printed circuit boards, with the power elements arrayed along the sides of the chassis on carefully dimensioned cooling profiles.

The transistors, in conjunction with four high-capacity filter foil capacitors, provide a continuous output of 200 watts per channel in class A / B up to 8 ohms. The amplifier is clearly built as a little "power plant."

The digital interface is built on a Texas Instruments chip, which operates with an internal resolution of 32 bit / 384 kHz, allowing the device to be Roon Tested certified or controlled, in addition to conventional PCM and MQA coding.

Rotel is well-known for giving a plethora of technical characteristics for their gadgets (as one of the few today). It is worth noting the attenuation factor of 600, intermodulation distortion of less than 0.03 percent (60 - 7,000 Hz), total harmonic distortion of less than 0.018 percent, and signal-to-noise ratio of more than 100 dB on analog and digital inputs.

The huge RA-1592MKII amplifier from Rotel remains the universally conceived device with extensive analog and digital connectivity in the second generation, where it is maybe a shame that Rotel did not use the innovation process to open the Ethernet port to streaming. The precise, clear, and firm, strong sound with authoritative control, on the other hand, was kept.

If you want to hear your recordings with a high dose of authenticity, colorlessness, precision contouring, and clarity, the RA-1592MKII is a highly intriguing option because it is unobtrusive.