Software/firmware updates


I have and like the SA10 but as the sound hardens a little at louder volume’s I’d like to upgrade to an SA30. I’m a bit of a technophobe and, having looked at the procedure for updates on Arcam’s website, suspect that I’d struggle with this side of things.

The only things I want to use from the SA30 are the integrated amplifier, DAC (used via the coaxial connection) and the remote control, I listen soley to CD.

I have 2 questions please;

1 - Is, as I assume, the sound of the SA30 similar to the SA10? i.e., rich, full bodied and non-fatiqing.

2 - I assume things don’t update automatically and you have to follow a procedure to actually activate updates, presumably using an external computer. If so, in view of the things I intend to use it for could I ongoingly ignore all prompts to update and still not have any problems (as I would guess updates relate to parts of the amp I’m not using like streaming). If my assumption is not correct and updates will be needed I’ll go for the SA20 (which it seems doesn’t need updates) but hopefully goes louder than the SA10.

Thanks in advance for any help/guidance.


Hi Dale,

If you don’t intend to use the streaming function of the SA30 or, perhaps even more crucially, Dirac Live, then I would advise you to go for the SA20. I haven’t heard it, mind you (nor the SA10 for that matter) but, according to my dealer, it sounds pretty similar to the SA30. This is to be expected, as they are both Class G designs and they use the same DAC chip. The SA10 is class AB and uses an inferior chip, so my guess is that the sound of the bigger siblings is not too far off in terms of character, but it’s certainly better and bigger.


I use Dynaudio Evoke 20’s which, I believe, like power so I’d prefer to upgrade to the SA30 if possible for the extra 50% power it has over the SA20. Also, that thing of it’s better to upgrade bigger rather than in smaller increments.

It is however useful to know that your dealer said the SA20 and SA30 sound similar so many thanks for that.

Best wishes, Dale