Testing The 5 Best Budget Stereo Amplifiers (2019)

By Glen / August 21, 2019

Last Updated on

Do you have a stereo and speakers, but don’t have a good amp? Good amplifiers can be expensive and the cheap ones can be lackluster in terms of quality.

Today we are here to help you find the best budget stereo amplifier that won’t break your budget, but still provides a whole lot of quality.


Best Budget Amplifiers: Reviews

1. Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier

Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier | Pre-Amp or Power Amp Integration | Superior Sound from Hi-Res Audio Files | Gold-Plated Inputs/Outputs | Complete the Series with the NA6006 and CD6006
  • EXPANDED CONNECTION POSSIBILITIES The successor of the multi award winning PM6005, the PM6006 is upgraded for peak current at the amplifier stage, which makes it possible to refine the sound for you in much more detail
  • FLEXIBLE OPERATIONS, DRIVES EVEN THE MOST DEMANDING SPEAKERS 3 Digital Inputs 1 coaxial & 2 optical inputs, 5 line audio inputs, including phono, 45 watts per channel (45 x 2) make it suitable for filling medium sized rooms with rich sound

The Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier is a more expensive option — some would say every expensive — but then again, when compared to other amplifiers out there, you could still consider it quite a bargain, especially for the high level of quality you get.

Review

In terms of the sound quality which the Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier can produce, it comes with various pieces of hardware and technology which provide truly unrivaled sound quality.

For instance, it comes with a toroidal transformer, which is much better than a normal EI core transformer, especially when it comes to reducing vibrations and therefore increasing sound quality.

The Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier also comes with a current feedback feature to provide a wide bandwidth and sound range, plus the high current power supply provides a wide dynamic range and it even has a low impedance drive capability.

What can be said is that the sound reproduction capabilities of the Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier are truly amazing.

What you also might like about this stereo amplifier is that it comes with more or less every kind of connection option you could ever possibly need, so you can easily connect it to any stereo and speaker system with ease.

The Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier is also quite compact, plus it looks pretty good too. It comes with onboard controls for precise adjustments, and it includes a remote as well.

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality
  • Awesome sound reproduction
  • Many connectivity options
  • Compact and decent looking

Cons

Some would  not consider this a budget item

Best for

This product is the perfect choice for anyone who is interested in getting powerful and clean sound out of their audio interface.

While it is somewhat pricier than other budget options the performance of this stereo amplifier will catch anyone’s attention.

2. TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier

TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier Receiver Mini Hi-Fi Class D Integrated Amp for Home Speakers 160W x 2 + 24V Power Supply
  • Adopt STMicro TDA7498E chip to get clear audio sound, No pop, no audible noise, dead silent when nothing is playing through it.
  • 160W X 2(4 ohms, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 0.04% THD), for outdoor/ bookshelf/ computer/ desktop /ceiling /floor standing speakers, can use iPod, Phone, MP3 players, TV, Echo Dot, CD players, or Streaming Media players as input.

Here we have what anybody would consider to truly be a cost effective option, the TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier, which comes in at about one-tenth of the price of the option we just reviewed above.

Review

The TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier is a very small and simple stereo amplifier. If you need something that is very compact, this is  a good option because it really takes up barely any space at all.

In terms of connectivity, you have the classic RCA connection option, and it’s  the only connection option, so it truly is a stereo amp; it does not come with an AUX or Bluetooth option, so connecting other devices is unfortunately out of the question.

With that being said, if you need a basic amp to connect to your stereo on one end, and to two speakers on the other, the TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier should serve you just fine.

The TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier is silent when nothing is playing through it, it has pretty decent sound reproduction capabilities, and it does produce some pretty clear audio.

No, it is not the No. 1 best amplifier out there at this time, for the low price, we don’t think that there is anything to complain about.

It does feature HIFI sound, but it’s not as good as an amp that you might spend several hundred dollars on, such as the one we reviewed above.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Small and compact
  • Super simple to set up
  • Simple controls

Cons

  • Not the best sound reproduction
  • Limited lifespan

Best for

Unlike the aforementioned one, this stereo amplifier is extremely affordable and is as such perfect for all of you with not many budget-options looking to invest in a good quality stereo amplifier and thus improve your music listening experience.

3. Onkyo M-5010 2-Channel Amplifier

Onkyo M-5010 2-Channel Amplifier (Black)
  • 75 W/Channel (8 Ohms, 1 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven, FTC)
  • Three-Stage Inverted Darlington Circuitry to Reduce Distortion

Here we have a fairly low priced amplifier, although it still costs a pretty penny. It’s about 4 times the price of the previous option, but still about one-third of the price of the very first amp we reviewed. It’s a nice model  if you have a couple hundred bucks to spend.

Review

The Onkyo M-5010 2-Channel Amplifier is a pretty basic stereo amp in terms of connectivity options. In terms of connections, it just has your basic RCA connection, and then outputs to run to your speakers.

It doesn’t support Bluetooth or anything like that, but if you just need to connect to your stereo, it works just fine. What can be said about the Onkyo M-5010 2-Channel Amplifier is that it features very high quality sound reproduction, and it should be able to handle bass and other such sounds just fine.

This stereo amplifier can deliver multi-zone audio with various Onkyo receivers, plus it has a decent damping factor as well.

What is really impressive about the Onkyo M-5010 2-Channel Amplifier is that it comes with three-stage inverted Darlington circuitry to greatly reduce sound distortion for really crisp and clear audio every time.

It’s not exactly the most space-friendly option, so you will need to make room for it, but with that said, it is a high-quality option and should last for many years.

Pros

  • Awesome sound reproduction
  • Minimal sound distortion
  • Very durable and long lasting
  • Decent price

Cons

  • Not too space friendly
  • Not many connectivity options

Best for:

While this product is certainly not suitable if you are going to reproduce music in a small and tight space, it is great for all people that want to enjoy the sound with minimal distortion and have their stereo amplifier be a worthy investment.

4. Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier

Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier (Black)
  • 60 W + 60 W (20 Hz - 20 kHz, 0.019% THD)
  • Digital coax and TOSLINK optical input

If you need a high-quality budget amplifier, the Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier is a good option.

Now, this is the second most expensive stereo amp on our list, so it’s not exactly cheap, but with that being said, there are also much more expensive options out there, especially considering that this model has really good sound reproduction capabilities.

Review

What is really nice about the Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier is that it comes with a lot of connectivity options. For one, it comes with a digital input option, so you can connect a TV or Blu-ray player if you choose.

It also comes with coaxial connectivity, as well as classic RCA connections for your speakers. What’s really neat is that the Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier also has an output so you can easily connect an extra subwoofer.

It also comes with a custom-made power transformer, 6,800uF block capacitors, and extruded aluminum heat sinks, as well as Total Purity Audio Reproduction Technology, and a pure direct mode for awesome sound quality.

The Yamaha A-S301BL Natural Sound Integrated Stereo Amplifier has precise controls on the front, easy-to-use dials that can be used to adjust more or less everything that needs adjustment.

No, it’s not the cheapest option around, but we do think that it is well worth the investment considering the high-quality and durable design.

Pros

  • Extremely durable and long lasting
  • Fantastic sound reproduction
  • High quality components
  • Easy to connect, control, and set up

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • Somewhat large

Best for

At the end of the day, if you are all about performance and sound quality and you don’t care whether one product is bulky or not then this Yamaha stereo amplifier is an affordable choice worth your attention!

5. Onkyo A-9110 Integrated Stereo Amplifier

Onkyo A-9110 Integrated Stereo Amplifier, Black
  • 50 W + 50 W (4 ohms, 20 hz–20 kHz, 0.9% THD, 2-ch Driven, FTC)
  • Wrap (wide range amplification technology)

This is a moderately priced stereo amplifier; it’s neither the most expensive nor the cheapest option around. It features a fairly space-friendly design, pretty good audio quality and sound reproduction, and the price is reasonable too.

Review

Something that you might appreciate about this Onkyo A-9110 Integrated Stereo Amplifier is that it comes with many connections.

You can connect up to 4 stereo systems at the same time with its numerous RCA inputs, although it can only connect to two speakers which is pretty standard.

What you might also like about the Onkyo A-9110 Integrated Stereo Amplifier is that works fine with a wide range of sounds and volumes.

Moreover, it also features a direct mode for source-authentic audio that sounds exactly like the original source. The Onkyo A-9110 Integrated Stereo Amplifier even features phase matching bass boost so you can get that heavy bass sound you are looking for.

This item also features a high-current EI transformer, large custom audio capacitors, and discrete output stage for some really good sound reproduction. We also like how this amplifier is pretty space-friendly.

Pros

  • Space friendly and durable
  • High quality sound reproduction
  • Multiple connections

Cons

A bit pricey for a budget amp

Best for

If you are a person who wants nothing more but clean and powerful sound but doesn’t have a flexible budget to invest in a high-end interface, a budget stereo amplifier is definitely the right choice.

Featuring a compact design with multiple connection ports, these are good whether you want them in your studio or at the comfort of your home!


Summary

So, if you have a few extra bucks to spend on a high quality amp, we would absolutely recommend the Marantz PM6006 Integrated Amplifier, although it is much more expensive than anything else here today.

On the other hand, if you want a true budget amp, the TDA7498E 2 Channel Stereo Audio Amplifier is probably what you want to go for.

If you want something that sits squarely in the middle, any of the other three options are fine as well.

About the author

Glen

My name is Glen Parry. I've been in the audio world for over 15 years. This includes guitar, keyboard, ukulele, speakers, headphones and everything else that comes with it. I spend all my free time on music production and jamming with friends. I hope to use this site to share my experience and help anyone looking for solutions to audio related problems.