Quantcast

Amp for Ascent i?

MartinLogan Owners (MLO)

Help Support MartinLogan Owners (MLO):

MikeN

Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Howdy. I am currently driving two Ascent i's and a Cinema i with a Denon 3805 (120W - 8 ohm) integrated receiver and want to upgrade to a better sounding and higher powered amp using the Denon as a preamp. The 3805 and MLs sound wonderful on HT, no complaints there but on two channel music the sound is definitely lacking a certain something. I am new to audio so I don't have the right words to describe it. The best I can do is: lean-sounding, not rich and alive and "big" like in the audio shop where I bought my speakers. At the shop, the Ascents were driven with a Primare set up.

The acoustic properties of my room are probably atrocious (huge 15' high vaulted ceilings) but I cannot do anything about that for the time being so I am focusing on the amp first.

I am on a budget and am currently looking at the Fosgate 1000.5 and the Aragon 2005. I'd like to stay under $2.5k and get something like 200W into 4 ohm, 5 channels if that is possible(?). Currently use my system for 70% music, 30% HT.

Any advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks
 
B

Bonedust

Guest
I'd take a serious look at the Sunfire amps. Ive had quite a few of them and always been very pleased with the sound, quality, and reliability.
 

DavidG

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 2, 2005
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Location
Solihull, UK
Meridian

You could also look at the Meridian 558 or G55. These both offer 5 mono amps in one chassis, with the option to bridge the outer amps on each side to leave you with 3 channels.

Power is more than adequate to run any ML, especially when you're using the bridged configuration!!

Cheers,

David
 

DanR

Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Location
Hartland MI
Hi Mike,I'll throw my 2 cents worth in here. First a couple of questions. What are the dimensions of your room?,how far are your speakers from the wall both out and to the sides?,whats in between the speakers?,and what kind of floor are they sitting on (wood floating....concrete). You can see where I'm going here, the room is very important to the sound, I own Ascent i speakers also and feel that they are the best sounding speaker on the market at their price point. The set up and placement of these speakers is critical and very minor adjustments in location can make a noticable sonic difference. Last question Mike, what kind of music do you listen to?

Dan
 

as350_b3

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
75
Reaction score
0
Location
Bend, OR
Dan brings up a few excellent points. More often than not, tweaking speaker placement and playing with rugs/curtains is the cheapest method of getting more out of your speakers.
Now to your question re: amps. I recently switched to a Krell Showcase 5 and am loving it. If you are patient, you will get a very good deal in your price range on ebay. They are going for approx. $2400 +/- used. In other words you can get a Krell for about half price if you're disciplined on ebay.
Good luck
Andy
 

aliveatfive

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
776
Reaction score
0
First off, your high, vaulted ceilings are probaly not a detriment. Logans like lots of space above them. Secondly, your idea of trying an Aragon power amp is probably a good one. Years ago I owned an Aragon 2004 amp. When I was in the process of buying my first pair of Logans, (Sequel IIs) my dealer suggested I bring in the amp to compare to his much higher-priced offerings. The Aragon was totally competeive with what he had in stock at a much lower price. I now have Ascent is that I normally drive with an ARC VT100 mk III. When that amp went in for service, I trotted out the old Aragon. Still a very creditable pairing. You could do an internet search for a used amp if money is a considerable problem. I also think a new preamp would probably make a worthwhile difference in your case.
 

DanR

Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Location
Hartland MI
Hi again Mike, It looks like you're getting some good suggestions for amps here. The reason I didn't suggest any in my first post is that I prefer tubes with the logans so I really don't have that much listening experience with solid state amps, although bonedust' suggestion of the sunfire equipment is good. I have heard only good things on this site from people who use them with logans. Something you may want to consider also is keeping your denon for the multi-channel movies and incorporating say an integrated 2 channel amp for music and just changing main speaker cables between the two.

Dan
 

jjqiv

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
355
Reaction score
0
Location
Los Gatos, CA
Aragon

If you go with an Aragon amp, definitely go with the 8008 series of product over the 2000 series of product. Also, for music the Denon is not going to cut it. You might want to consider just getting a two or three channel amp so you can budget-in/integrate-in a good two channel tube preamp. ML's love tubes in the signal path.
 

MikeN

Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Thanks so much everyone!

DanR, my room dimensions are 16.5' x 17.5' with an opening to a hallway along the short wall. My speaker placement is pretty bad I guess. they are about 3' out from the long wall and only 5' apart when measuring from the inner sides of the speakers. They are slightly toed in and from my seating location along the opposite wall I can see a little bit of the inner panels. I have a 50" rear projection LCD in between the speakers, but the speakers protrude out further from the wall than the display does. Unfortauntely I am in an apt that is overstuffed with stuff so am unable to spread the speakers apart further.
Floor is covered by carpet. Nothing on the drywalls except paint. Stuffed into the same severly overcrowded room is a bookshelf, home gym, treadmill, leather couch, sparkletts water dispenser, coffee table, and an open stairway leading to a loft.

I listen to wide range of music - from Patti Griffin to Patricia Barber, Coldplay, Al Green, Stan Getz, Bob Marley, Eagles, Soundgarden, Karrin Allison, all over the map :) Mostly on CD but trying to get more no SACD.
 

MikeN

Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
what can I expect to pay new for a 5-channel Sunfire, Meridian 558 or G55, Krell Showcase 5, Aragon 8008? I'm a little nervous about buying used equipment online if it's over $1k. I don't think I'm experienced enough to maintain a tube amp yet even though I keep reading great things about them. also, is it important to get close to 200W into 4 ohm with whatever amp I get? I can get what I believe is an excellent deal for a new Aragon 2005 (under $1900). Finally, what is the primary difference between the aragon 8008 and 2005?

Thanks again to everyone for all the help. This is a great site!
 

DanR

Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Location
Hartland MI
Hi again Mike, looking at your room dimensions they aren't that bad, and I think everybody understands the crowding thing. One thing I would suggest to maybe tighten up the bass on the speakers is to decouple them from the floor. I use patio blocks under mine they are 16" square and weigh about 60 pounds each with the speakers sitting on the blocks (make sure to use the spikes that came with the speakers). As far as the amps go, don't get all caught up in the specs, for example the only solid state amp I've used with my logans is a Rotel RB 1080 which is 300watts per channel at 4 ohms and it was too bright sounding for my taste. Listen to what other people here can tell you about the amps and then try and audition them yourself to see what sound YOU like. Good luck Mike!

Dan
 

Callisto

Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2005
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
Location
Sweden
I can recomend Krell FPB serie. I use the FPB 200 with my Ascent i and it sounds awesome. These speakers really need an amplifier with high current capability to really sound optimal.

Good luck
 

DavidG

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 2, 2005
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Location
Solihull, UK
Meridian Amps

Hi there,

You won't be able to get the 558 new any more, only the G55. I'm in the UK so I don't know what you'll pay in the states. Over here they're around £3.5k.

Cheers,

David
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
DanR said:
Hi again Mike, looking at your room dimensions they aren't that bad, and I think everybody understands the crowding thing. One thing I would suggest to maybe tighten up the bass on the speakers is to decouple them from the floor. I use patio blocks under mine they are 16" square and weigh about 60 pounds each with the speakers sitting on the blocks (make sure to use the spikes that came with the speakers). As far as the amps go, don't get all caught up in the specs, for example the only solid state amp I've used with my logans is a Rotel RB 1080 which is 300watts per channel at 4 ohms and it was too bright sounding for my taste. Listen to what other people here can tell you about the amps and then try and audition them yourself to see what sound YOU like. Good luck Mike!

Dan
Dan,
I have a Rotel RB 1080 and yes it did sound bright with my Sequel II's but not as bad with my CLSiiZ's. What I found improved was experimenting with wood ( Roberto - thanks :) ) and then I also used isolation feet (Herbies Audio Lab) under my amp, preamp and cd player (Tara Labs) which removed almost all the brightness. Maybe someday when money becomes available I would like to try moving to tubes but I would like to do an A-B comparison to see the virtues. I do know that tubes are warmer and I do understand the technical aspect of tubes but my wallet doesn't understand that yet. :D

Jeff
 

Sky Saw

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
97
Reaction score
0
Location
Toronto, Canada
Hi Mike,

I also have Ascent-i's, and very high ceilings. I find that the extra reverb from all the space up above can be difficult to manage, but all your 'stuff' should help to deal with excess reverb issues. I like many of the suggestions from other members, particularly the Meridian suggestion - Meridian amps can be warm and sweet. Since no one else has mentioned them, I should suggest that you look into Blue Circle amplifiers.

One thing I have learned from this forum is that many people have had success buying used, and that most audiophiles take good care of their equipment, so buying used audio gear is nothing like the risk of buying a used car (transaction issues aside). I recently purchased a used Blue Circle BC28 amp to replace my ss amp, and I am delighted with it. It is a hybrid amp, so tube replacement is both easy and inexpensive (I am into spending time listening to my stereo, but not so much into playing with tubes, and so I will probably never own an all-out tube kit either). Although I have only had it in my system for about a week, I can say that it has stunning presence (i.e. the musicians are so there), and a gorgeous sense of rightness. As a used item, it should fall withing your price range.
 

Muad'Dib

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
83
Reaction score
0
Check out LINN amps - you can pick up a 5 channel used amp on Audiogon for under 2 1/2 grand easily. Sound terrific with Logans too.

Mine is a small stereo LINN amp rated stable at 400W into 2 ohms.

-D
 

Marman

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Messages
19
Reaction score
0
Bryston Amps with Ascent I

I'm using Bryston 4bsst and 6bsst with the Ascent Is.

Tried ST and the SSTs are noticeably better for MLs.

Blue Circle Amps also great fit.
 

longhorn

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 4, 2005
Messages
179
Reaction score
0
Marman said:
I'm using Bryston 4bsst and 6bsst with the Ascent Is.

Tried ST and the SSTs are noticeably better for MLs.

Blue Circle Amps also great fit.
I was thinking about getting a Bryston 4BSST,how will it sound just by itself powerinng your Ascents? Does it have enough current?

If you own Maggies Brystons are recomended.
 

unclemonty

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Messages
18
Reaction score
0
Amp for Ascent i

Hi Nick -

I have recently been in exactly the same situation as you - using a Denon 3805 with Ascent i's. Although it sounded 'ok', especially on home theater, it wasn't cutting the mustard at all on stereo.

I bought a PS Audio GCC500 for stereo duties, which uses the same IcePower technology as the JJAZ amps mentioned by another poster to this thread. It makes a wonderful sound, and really drives the Ascent i's very well. Bags of low level detail, energy, timing and bass. I love it.

I should add that this was an especially brave move for me as the PS Audio amp replaced a krell KRC HR & Krell FPB600 combo which of course were excellent too. The PS Audio amp is smaller, cheaper, cooler running, neater than the Krell's, and as a bonus you can buy the amp in pretty much any number of channel combination you wish to.

Highly recommended!
 
Top