New owner, Ascents on the way, amp question

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Hello! I finally took the plunge and ordered a pair of Ascent i's. I am still waiting for them to arrive (probably another 1-2 weeks). My question is about 2 amps that I am considering pairing with the MLs that my local dealer has available. The first is the Musical Fidelity Kilowatt series, and the other is the Krell FPB series. Anyone using either of these amps with their MLs? I know my ears are the best judge, but I was just looking for opinions from this group. I have been lurking since I ordered the speakers last weekend and can't wait to get them set up. My current amp is an 18 year old Carver M.5t, which (IMHO) the MLs are going to reveal as a weakness very quickly. My listening is more HT than music, but I want something that is going to play well for music for the rare times I get to enjoy two channel.

Thanks and I can't wait to be among the (actual) owners of MLs, I've waited more than 20 years for the chance at these... :)

Charles Leader
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Hi Charles,


I've heard the Ascent i's at my local dealer many times. Everytime I came for listen, the Ascent i's were set up with different electronics, from Krell, Mcintosh, Meridian to Classe but personally I love the MLs with Classe set up. My wife has the same feeling as well. I am using a Bryston 4b st to drive my newly purchased Odysseys and could not be happier (I am using a valve pre.)

Hope your Ascent i's will arrive soon so you don't have many sleepless nights.

Regards, Transpar


Ascent i's are great speakers, as you know... I have been looking at Butler Audio.

and the Sunfire - Cinema Signature Grand 400~seven with a, Sunfire - Classic Vacuum Tube Center (pre-amp).

also if you can afford it, Classe amps., are great too.

Musical Fidelity A5 intergrated amplifier is on my list.

Charles and Transparent,

It is great to have you both, here at the ML Club. Welcome!!!


-Robin :D
The dealer that I bought mine from was running them off of Musical Fidelity, and they sounded great. They ran their Summits off of about $25-30k worth of Classe...

Thanks for your warm welcome. I like your "suspension" system. I think that is the best way to isolate the speakers from the floor thus less vibration.

Regards, Transpa
Whatever amp you decide to purchase I would suggest using Music as the baseline for judging audio preformance.

If a system does a convincing job of recreating a man or woman singing and playing a guitar, then it will easily reproduce the sound of glass breaking, doors slamming, telephones ringing, etc. Botton is more complex.
Thanks for the great welcome everyone. Good suggestion on using music only to evaluate the best characteristics of an amp.

you really can't go wrong with krell, classe or musical fidelity. of the 3 i would go with the mf kilowatt series as they are a very very nice match with logans. i personally have a pass labs x250 amp and could not be happier. i like it better than the krell fpb series as it has much more finesse and super clean. pair that amp with nordost cabling and you suddenly removed a veil from yous speakers. i too have an ht setup but am a critical 2 channel listener and could not be happier with the pass labs. i would seriously look into one of these beasts as they are in your price range and come up used often on audiogon. or, if you are a real music lover, go with a blue circle setup (amps, pre, etc) and be prepared to listen to music!!!!
Welcome to the greatest idea exchange I have found

I am going to second Anthony. I have the Pass Labs X-350 coupled to a McIntosh C2200 tube pre. I am listening to the Ascent i's. Pass makes great stuff for sure but so do other people. All of what your looking at is great. My local dealer let me audition the Classe as well. To his dismay :eek: , I bought the Pass but once all was said and done and he knew my ears had made the decision, he became his normal jovial and helpful self. :)

My point is, listen to them all and then make your decision. When I set out to buy a true "Class A" amp, I was bound and determined that I was buying Krell. As far as I was concerned, there was nothing better than Krell. Well, I thought nothing "looked" better. After all, if it looked good, it was, right? Krell had famous baseball players appearing in their magazine ads too! That convinced me!

Don't listen to anything but your ears. The downside is that my ears cost me more money than I was planning on spending. Who knows, you ears might save you some money! Good luck and I for one look forward to what you decide on. Lastly, I am purely two channel right now. :cool: :cool:

Still waiting

Thanks again all, I phoned my dealer yesterday and I caught ML right in the middle of a build cycle on the Ascents, so it looks like another coupla weeks before they get here. My local (and only high end) dealer doesn't carry Pass Labs or Butler (both of which I'd love to audition), for those of you in smaller cities etc. is there any way to get a chance to try out some of these smaller brands if your dealer doesn't carry them? Right now, the only in home I can get a demo of with my local place is Musical Fidelity, Krell, or VTL.

Should have mentioned this. Don't hesitate to look at the used market. There are substantial savings to be had that route! You can get a whole bunch more amp for a whole lot less money that way!
Save $$$$$$$$$$ Buy Used

I agree. I would never buy new at full retail. Maybe I don't have as much $$$ as others who have this hobby. But, I just think it doesn't make sense to buy new when you can save literally thousands of dollars by shopping on the used market at I purchased (and sold) at least 6 or 7 high end pieces on Audiogon with absolutely no problems. Everyone I have dealt with have been honest and audiophiles like myself who just are looking for the best sounding equipment that will match with their current equipment......and you don't have to deal with having to break-in a new unit.

There is also little risk. If you happen to buy something that may be great but just not compatible with your current equipment, you can just turn around and sell it for the same price that you bought it for. If you bought something new and did not like it, you will definitely lose big if you decide to sell and try something else.


PS: I bought my Ascent i's on Audiogon brand new in boxes from an authorized ML dealer for over a thousand $$ below retail and am very happy with them. I think he just needed to move some merchandise quickly. This kind of thing does not happen often, but if you keep looking, you can stumble on some great deals.

ernio1 makes a great point. Read up on stuff and if you want to try something other than what your local dealer has to offer, buy it on If your not happy with it, you can turn around and sell it without really losing any money. I have bought a few things there myself and been totally satisfied as well. Also, I bought my brand new, in the box, Ascent i's there (Audiogon) for over a thousand below retail. Wonder if we dealt with the same dealer?