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Sanus AFA Audio Rack

Ed Grochowski

Written 12-4-2016

Good Audio Defies Miniaturization


After decades of audio as a hobby, I finally upgraded a component of my stereo system that had never received much attention - the furniture.

The Sanus AFA Accurate Furniture Audio ($150) is a four-shelf rack designed for audio equipment. Compared to the old entertainment center, the Sanus AFA offers superior ventilation and fewer restrictions on the use of space.

The Sanus AFA nicely accommodates my vintage Dual turntable, Sony CD player, and phono preamplifier and integrated amplifier designed and built by me.

Ye Olde Pentium 4 PC sits on the floor, but this is okay given its use as a music player. Eventually, a Core i7 PC will be waterfalled to entertainment duties.

Listening Tests

Audiophiles are known for obsessing over how trivial changes to their stereo systems can improve the sound. This has led to a slew of audio products with highly dubious claims.

While I had no expectations that furniture could somehow affect "accuracy", much to my amazement, the Sanus AFA did produce a subtle improvement in the sound.

This is likely a result of no longer having an entertainment center between the speakers. The Magnepan speakers are dipoles, radiating sound equally to the front and back. They are sensitive to objects behind them.

I give the Sanus AFA an A+ on appearance, ventilation, and flexibility, and extra credit for the sound.