The first thing that strikes you about this amplifier, is its unique blue marble fascia, making most other amps appear rather drab and boring. But when it comes to Hi-Fi, what’s in the box is what really matters. Here you get a no nonsense and simple Class AB, push-pull amplifier, with 5 line levels inputs (phono stage were optional extras) and a very reasonably 50W of output.
Designed and built in the UK during the mid ’90s, John Shearne has managed to create a solid state amp with a valve-like character. Some may argue that good amps all sound should be perfectly transparent, however in reality this is impossible to achieve, so choose an amp you like the sound of. The Phase 2 is certainly not perfectly transparent, but does have a very musical and enjoyable warm character with great bass detail.
Sold new for £592 in 1995, expect to pay around £250-350 second hand today. There also exists an improved ‘reference’ version (sold for $1895 in 2000).