Anthem STR: Why all the hate?

Hi all,

I currently own an Anthem STR integrated and a Pair of Focal Sopra 2s. I’ve been looking at getting a new power amp with the long term plan of replacing the Anthem STR integrated with the STR preamp. Yet every single dealer I’ve talked to has absolutely taken a dump on Anthem. I enjoy it now, auditioned it against other products and it regularly makes top equipment lists. So why risk upsetting a potential customer by telling them they need to pick something other than Anthem?

Ag insider logo xs@2xmattlathrop


Several years ago, I auditioned an Anthem Integrated versus Naim and Luxman. The Anthem was outclassed by both. My dealer had nothing bad to say other than "Let's move on". So I can see why dealers might not like them. Also, a sleeper in the integrated market is the Rotel Michi integrateds. They offer a tremendous bang for the buck and are in the price range of the Anthem. 

Crutchfield has a 60 day return policy and offers Anthem products, why not try an audition? As for dealers I think they like what they like, just like customers. 

The STR remains on Stereophil's Class A recommended list, years after it's introduction. That should tell you all you need to know. And outclassed by Luxman??? Please...


When I auditioned the Anthem, the Luxman 590AXII was far superior to the the STR. There were others in the room who thought the same. I also take the class A recommendations with a grain of salt, highly based on advertising dollars. The Luxman is built with Rolex quality, while the Anthem is a Timex (as its sonic signature reveals).

As for dealers I think they like what they like, just like customers.

Agreed. Plus they get commissions for products they carry. That probably adds something, because people like to make money rather than not make money.