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Anthem MCA 525

5-channel power amplifier

5 Reviews | 2 questions - 2 answers

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Overview

Our take on the Anthem MCA 525

The Anthem MCA 525 is 61 pounds' worth of multichannel muscle. When Anthem visited Crutchfield to demo their line, I casually attempted to lift the MCA 525 — and was humbled by its heft. It will drive even power-hungry speakers to movie theater volume levels without breaking a sweat. And this well-engineered amp excels at controlling the stop-start motion of your speakers' drivers, enhancing virtually every aspect of sound quality from deep bass, to dynamics, to soundstaging.

Multichannel muscle for your home theater

The Anthem MCA 525 is 61 pounds' worth of multichannel muscle. When Anthem visited Crutchfield to demo their line, I casually attempted to lift the MCA 525 — and was humbled by its heft. It will drive even power-hungry speakers to movie theater volume levels without breaking a sweat. And this well-engineered amp excels at controlling the stop-start motion of your speakers' drivers, enhancing virtually every aspect of sound quality from deep bass, to dynamics, to soundstaging.

Usually, 5-channel amps like the MCA 525 are paired with A/V preamp/processors like Anthem's superb AVM 60. But if your home theater receiver has preamp outputs — and many do, like Anthem's MRX Series models — you can easily connect the MCA 525 and use it to drive your main and surround channels. That surge of added power adds startling impact to movie soundtracks.

Inside the Anthem sound

Anthem MCA 525 with top removed

The MCA 525 is constructed like 5 mono amps, with dual toroidal power supplies for plenty of stable power.

The MCA 525's rated power output provides a clue to this amp's unshakeable grip on the music. It produces 225 watts per channel at 8 ohms, 400 watts into 4 ohms and an incredible 600 watts into 2 ohms!

Anthem's previous 5-channel amp used a single power supply for the front left and right channels, and another supply for the center and surrounds. The MCA 525 employs a new design, sharing its two power supplies among all channels. The result is full bursts of power — instantly — without ever compromising channel separation.

When designing their latest MCA Series amplifiers, Anthem upgraded nearly every part in the signal path in order to reduce noise and distortion. From the custom high-power toroidal transformers inside, to the re-designed speaker binding posts in back, every feature was optimized so that you'll hear clean, transparent sound emerging from an eerily quiet background.

Made in Canada, respected around the world

For more than two decades, Anthem has been making award-winning high-performance audio/video equipment for music and home theater. Anthem power amplifiers are designed, engineered, and built in Canada.

Product Highlights:

  • 225 watts per channel into 8 ohms, 400 watts per channel into 4 ohms, or 600 watts per channel into 2 ohms, for compatibility with even difficult-to-drive speakers
  • Class AB design with 8 high-current bipolar output transistors per channel for lower distortion
  • dual custom low-noise, high-power toroidal transformers for stable, noise-free operation
  • high-quality filter capacitors and advanced power supply regulators
  • Advanced Load Monitoring™ technology monitors internal temperature, current, and voltage to ensure safe, uninterrupted operation
  • 3-way on/off operation: manual, triggered, or signal-sensing auto on/off
  • balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA inputs for all five channels
  • custom-designed binding post terminals accept bare wire, banana plugs, and spade lugs
  • 3.5mm trigger in/out jacks allow the amplifier to be turned on or off remotely
  • detachable power cord
  • designed, engineered, and manufactured in Canada
  • total harmonic distortion: 0.015%
  • signal-to-noise ratio: 120 dB
  • 17-1/4"W x 6-5/8"H x 18-1/8"D
  • weight: 61 lbs.
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • 5-Channel power amplifier
  • AC power cord
  • Operating Manual
Reviews

Anthem MCA 525 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(5 Reviews)
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Product Research

Features

MCA Series Amplifier: Anthem's MCA series of amplifiers balance the complex dynamics of today's most demanding multi-channel media with the rare finesse required to satisfy the audiophile in you. MCA series amplifiers provide an abundance of conservatively rated power into demanding low-impedance loads with incredible reliability.

Note: The MCA series amplifiers are perfectly matched for Anthem's AVM 60 Pre-Amplifier (973AVM60, sold separately).

Superior Craftsmanship: The Anthem MCA series multi-channel amplifier's superior craftsmanship is reflected in its clean, clear, audiophile-quality sound from top-to-bottom of the frequency spectrum. MCA series multi-channel amplifiers utilize only the highest quality of parts - like custom low noise high-power toroidal transformers, high-current bipolar output transistors, high-quality filter capacitors, advanced power supply regulators, oversized aluminum heatsinks, custom-designed dual binding posts, and patented auto-on/off circuitry.

5-Channel Power Amp: The Anthem MCA 525 is a 5-channel power amplifier. This 5-channel power amp is incredibly stable into difficult, low-impedance speaker loads, making it a reliable performer in even the toughest circumstances. The MCA 525 utilizes 8 bipolar output devices per channel for greater high-current power with less stress on the amplifier.

  • 8Ω: 225 watts per channel (continuous RMS, 20Hz to 20kHz, <1% THD)
  • 4Ω: 400 watts per channel (continuous RMS, 20Hz to 20kHz, <1% THD)
  • 2Ω: 600 watts per channel (continuous RMS, 20Hz to 20kHz, <1% THD)

Massive Toroidal Power Supplies: The MCA 525 shares its two power supplies between all channels; the result is full bursts of instantaneous power without affecting channel separation. The MCA series amplifier delivers incredible dynamics thanks to these massive, conservatively rated power supplies designed with high-rail voltages. Low flux toroidal power transformers ensure ultra quiet performance by minimizing stray magnetic field radiation. This provides the pure, clean, low-noise power that is needed to reproduce the full dynamics of home theater and the most complex and dynamic music recordings.

Direct Path Circuitry: The  MCA series greatly reduces the use of internal cabling for a much smoother circuit path for pure, unobstructed audio performance. Both power supply impedance and internal cabling inductance have been minimized to deliver a direct, clear path for maximum power; even in the most demanding conditions. Consequently, Anthem removed output relays, so the signal path has absolutely no moving parts. All parts, including the eight bipolar output transistors per channel, are run conservatively so they remain within their safe operating range.

Advanced Load Monitoring (ALM) Technology: Anthem's exclusive ALM circuitry protects the amplifier's sensitive output devices by constantly monitoring temperature, current, and voltage to ensure optimum long-term performance. ALM is totally non-invasive; it is not in the signal path and only engages in the most extreme circumstances to protect the amplifier from damage by maintaining the safe operating area of the output devices.

120dB Signal-To-Noise Ratio: With a signal-to-noise ratio of 120dB, background noise is practically nonexistent, leaving you with just pure natural sound reproduction from the MCA series amplifier.

Balanced & Unbalanced Analog Inputs: The Anthem MCA 525 amplifier is equipped with five balanced XLR inputs and five unbalanced RCA inputs for Front Left, Front Right, Center, Surround Left, and Surround Right channels. Balanced XLR connections offer the highest transmission quality, particularly over long cable lengths, because they reject noise and hum pickup. If your preamplifier does not have XLR outputs, use the RCA inputs.

Custom-Designed Binding-Posts: Five pair of speaker terminals are provided for connecting a pair of front speakers, a center-channel speaker, and a pair of rear surround speaker. These custom-designed, oversized robust binding-posts ensure full power delivery at all times. They're easy to use and facilitate large speaker cable connectors, as well a banana plugs (single only).

Trigger Input/Output: The Anthem MCA 525 is equipped with a 12V trigger input (3.5mm) and 12V trigger output (3.5m) to synchronize power on/off with other components that also feature 12V trigger inputs and outputs.

3-Way On/Off: The MCA series amplifier can be powered on or off in three ways - manually with the On/Off switch on the front-panel, remotely via the rear-panel 5V-24V trigger input, or automatically with Anthem's patented Auto-On/Off circuit. Via the Auto-On/Off circuit, an incoming audio signal immediately switches it on; and approximately 20 minutes after the audio signal ends, it simply switches off.

Protection Circuitry: The Anthem MCA series amplifier utilizes a 3-way protection circuit to guard against Short Circuits (Short Circuit protection), Over-Heating (Thermal protection), and Ground Faults (DC protection).

Crafted In Canada: Anthem's MCA series multi-channel amplifiers are designed and crafted in Canada.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

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Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

review article [ Tyrone Ty  Sep 03, 2018 ]
I own other amplifier by Anthem and I like it. [ Kwabina  May 08, 2017 ]
needed at least 2 channels of 200 amps of good power. so decided on 5 channel so we could do a surround sound at some point in the future [ Amy  Nov 06, 2016 ]

2 questions already asked

Didn't have any scratches and dents on mine. Very well packaged when I got it. [ Kwabina  Aug 03, 2018 ]
The manual for MCA 525 states as follows for 3 speakers connected: 210 W @8 ohms; 310W @ 4 Ohms; [ Kwabina  Apr 26, 2017 ]
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