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Thread: Carver Lightstar reference and I am freaking out

  1. #1
    Senior Member Cherian's Avatar
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    Default Carver Lightstar reference and I am freaking out

    Ok I think I did something crazy. I purchased on Audiogon a Carver Lightstar Reference amp. without ever listening to it. I am a big fan of Bob Carver and have many of his amps. I have (2) A-500X, (2) A-220, and a TFM-25 and love the sound that comes out every one. So when I saw the Lightstar something in my head snapped and I had to have it. So last night when I could not get the Lightstar amp out of my head I purchased it. Having never listened to one and finding no detailed reviews of the amp on the WEB I started got worried. Presently I have a ML HT system. It is made of (4) Scenario and a Cinema. The Scenarios are powered by the Carver A-500X and the Cinema by a Carver A-220 in bridged mono mode. Some day I would like to build a dedicated 2-channel system for just listening to music. Get a pair of large MLs like the CLS. And use the Lightstar amp to drive it. My question is has any one in this group had any experience with this amp. If so how would you describe its sound? Any information would be a big help.

    Thanks,

    Cherian

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    Super User C.A.P's Avatar
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    Its a lot like the Sunfire except better built , the sound is almost identical as Bob Carver designed them with identical topology just a few twists in each one , there was a comparison in a old Sensible Sound I had . said sonically they were so close that if the reviewer was buying one with his money it would have been the Sunfire cause of price , not sound and if it was not his it would have been the Carver for looks and build not sound , AS THEY WERE SO CLOSE SONICLY THAT IT WAS A DRAW. I had a Sunfire and liked it alot. It was very easy to listen to .
    Last edited by C.A.P; 01-11-2006 at 07:18 PM.
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    Senior Member Reverb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by C.A.P
    Its a lot like the Sunfire except better built , the sound is almost identical as Bob Carver designed them with identical topology just a few twists in each one , there was a comparison in a old Sensible Sound I had . said sonically they were so close that if the reviewer was buying one with his money it would have been the Sunfire cause of price , not sound and if it was not his it would have been the Carver for looks and build not sound , AS THEY WERE SO CLOSE SONICLY THAT IT WAS A DRAW. I had a Sunfire and liked it alot. It was very easy to listen to .
    CAP,

    What did you use the sunfire for? 2 channel or multi channel?
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    MLO owner/operator TomDac's Avatar
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    Hi Cherian,

    I was drooling over that amp too! I like Carver stuff and the Lightstar is the pinnacle of the stuff they produced. Although I've never heard one, everything I've read about the Lightstar was wonderful.. they can drive anything effortlessly, very neutral sounding, etc. etc. etc. Also, they are VERY rare as only a handful were ever produced.

    Congrats and let us know how you like it.

    Tom.
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    Super User C.A.P's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Zip3kx07]CAP,

    What did you use the sunfire for? 2 channel or multi channel?[/QUO


    2 channel with the Quests and at times with MaggiesIIIa,s it is a warm amp , very powerful. As for looks the lightstar is gem , plus it is two separate amps in one. Two mono amps in on chassis, with separate power supplies very well made. that's why it retailed for almost double the cost of the Sunfire.
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    Senior Member Cherian's Avatar
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    I should have the Lightstar amp in my hands next week. I will listen to it and post my thoughts. Thanks for everyones input and info.

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    Super User JonFo's Avatar
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    You should be really happy with that Lightstar (assuming itís in good working order).

    I run my rig with all Sunfires (12 channels worth) and have never even considered switching to anything else, they are awesome on MLís.

    Been a long time fan of Bobís amp designs. Starting back in the day with an M500. Man was that ahead of its time. Also had a Carver C4000 preamp that was the catís meow at the time (pre-digital days).

    Cheers,

    Jonathan
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    Super User C.A.P's Avatar
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    I ran m500t two in bridged mode and have a c4000 sitting around still collecting dust !!! they were decent amps . The lightstar will far surpass them amps , it is a clean powerful amp .(Bobs last stab at higher end)as Sunfire was the same topology but designed in a cheaper fashion , to compete with it
    Martin Logan... Odyssey...Krell KSA 100s...Krell KRC3 Pre Amp...Krell Connect Media server/DAC
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    Senior Member Cherian's Avatar
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    I got the Carver Lightstar amp today. This amp must be all of 70 lbs. The build quality is just wonderful. The Lightstar is very clean and looks sleek and modern. After listening to the Carver A-500x and then the Lightstar I can tell the difference. It felt like the Lightstar had no end to its power. WOW what an amp!!!! I can see now it will be time for some bigger ML speakers.
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    looks nice.

    "This amp must be all of 70 lbs."

    is it on a glass shelf alone?

    extra power is always nice...

  11. #11
    Senior Member Cherian's Avatar
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    The amp is on the glass with my power conditioner. The glass is rated for 130 lbs so it should be OK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherian View Post
    I got the Carver Lightstar amp today. This amp must be all of 70 lbs. The build quality is just wonderful. The Lightstar is very clean and looks sleek and modern. After listening to the Carver A-500x and then the Lightstar I can tell the difference. It felt like the Lightstar had no end to its power. WOW what an amp!!!! I can see now it will be time for some bigger ML speakers.

    Greetings guys (1st post here)

    I have been scrounging the net for everything Lightstar. You guys have a few threads that came up with Lightstar hits, so here it goes...

    I am posting a request for anyone that owns any Lightstar equipment to please take a jump over to our Lightstar Owners thread and list your unit and SN, so we can keep an eye on them. There are so few of these units and I would like to try to gather as many owners together as possible, and try to keep tabs on the units.
    http://www.carveraudio.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=4004

    I see in another thread you wrote, "I even sold my Carver Lightstar reference to buy the Monoliths. It is my time!!!! LOL."

    Maybe that's the one I just bought ???

    Any other Carver fans, are welcome as well.
    http://www.carveraudio.com/phpBB2/index.php

    Thanks for your time.

    James

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    Newbie bebop's Avatar
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    Thumbs up lightstar nirvana

    congratulations Cherian! I'm from the Seattle area and not far from the location your amplifier was produced. I've actually owned two of the Reference amplifier's. They're fine amps especially for driving tough loads. I used one to drive my CLS IIz's. Funny story: The first reference I acquired was found at a local independent audio dealer (hawthorne stereo) when I stumbled in one day. They had 7 of them brand new in the box. They'd been discontinued by that time. I was advised they had 7 of them because they'd acquired them from an engineer who'd received them as payment in lieu of stock options. I was curious what a $4k retail amp by Carver sounded like so for the price of $1400 and brand new in the box I bought one. Probably kept if for 6 months before sampling other things used on the web. It gets plenty warm so don't be surprised that it will be a nice space heater for you this winter. I actually bought another one used 3 years later off the net. It too has since moved on, who knows one of those I had might very well be the one you have now. Darn fine amplifier, and you might consider matching it with the Carver Research preamp. It's not an ez find but they come up from time to time for about $800. All the best! Bebop

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    Senior Member Cherian's Avatar
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    I'm sorry to report I sold this amp last month to ToyMaker of the CarverAudio Forum. He has this wonderful amp now. I know he loves it and will take good care of it.

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    MLO owner/operator TomDac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherian View Post
    I'm sorry to report I sold this amp last month to ToyMaker of the CarverAudio Forum. He has this wonderful amp now. I know he loves it and will take good care of it.
    DUDE! I can't believe you sold that amp to someone other than me!!!!!

    I feel a banishment coming on!!!
    Tom D'Acquisto
    MartinLoganOwners.com owner/operator
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    Currently MartinLoganless
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    ick HERE to see my ML systems of the past.


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