- Mar 4, 2021
- Reaction score
- Santa Ana, California
I tried those two. Cherry Bomb sounded OK with a good soundstage, but the bass was lacking. Girl in Trouble sounded great!Well, I agree that is has to do with the speakers, meaning that the amps and speakers need to like each other.
Over the years I've tried a bunch of solid state amps in my home with my system, some borrowed, some I've owned, some I bought and returned. They all had at least the same power into 8Ω as a Krell I've had for about nine years now, or way more than double the power into 8Ω, some doubled in power when halving the impedance, others didn't. Some cost as little as $500 new, or $500 used (old Carver I still have), on up to over $9,000 new. The sound ranged from "dull", meaning not much sparkle and has less sparkle at higher volume like a tone control was turning removing treble and mid-range, to harsh in the higher frequency ranges, and none sounded as good as the Krell multi-channel amp. The one amp model which came closest to the Krell is the Emotiva HC-1 mono amp. Close, but not better, and it's under $900 each.
I'm a big fan of power, but it's not the only consideration IMO. Power can possibly overcome some shortcomings, but not totally with respect to ML stats.
My tube amps have the best soundstage, and most inviting and lifelike sound while having the least amount of power of any of the amps I've tried.
With regard to content, there's a couple key songs I play to find out how any amplifier will handle things with my speakers. They can sound really harsh with the wrong amps, but with the right amps they sound good (this is something anyone with ok hearing will notice). The songs are "Girl In Trouble" by Romeo Void, and "Cherry Bomb" by The Runaways. There's no nuance, they either sound good or sound bad.
If no harshness, or instantly fatiguing sound while playing these songs, then things are good between amp/speaker.I tried those two. Cherry Bomb sounded OK with a good soundstage, but the bass was lacking. Girl in Trouble sounded great!
That track from Romeo Void sounded really good! It makes me want to check them out more. Neither was fatiguing. Cherry Bomb was a bit lifeless and flat, but still had good imaging.If no harshness, or instantly fatiguing sound while playing these songs, then things are good between amp/speaker.
There was a tv show on VH1 called Bands Reunited that sought to bring back together the dis-banded. Romeo Void was one of the bands featured on an episode. The sad part was that the sax player couldn't play anymore due to serious tinnitus and hearing problems, so couldn't participate with the reunion.
I want to strongly reinforce the importance of this particular spec, as it is a great indicator as to whether an amp is suitable for ESL duties.
Not only will the impedance go very low, but it is also quite varied across the frequency spectrum (especially with older passive crossover ESLs); that is tough for an amp to be handling a wide frequency range into different impedances. To maintain a smooth frequency response, the ability to push the needed voltages in an even fashion is important.
Over 28 years of ESL ownership, I can attest to the quality of the Sunfire 'load invariant' amps, as I have a 27-year-old Sunfire stereo, a 22-year-old Sunfire Cinema Gand, and a 20-year-old CG Signature I bought new back in the day. All handle the ESL's just fine.
But the best amp I've found for ESL duties is the Sanders Sound Systems ESL amp, in either the base or the Magtech variant.
Every day, the Sanders ESL amp proves its mettle by driving the huge Monolith panels direct, with no crossovers (I run them in an Active XO setup), so it has to deal with the back-EMF, capacitance, and low impedance of the step-up transformer and panel. Does not break a sweat. Highly recommended for any ESL speaker.
I tried this amp with my MartinLogans (Aerius-i and a pair of CLSIIz) and it took all of 10 seconds to tell that the amp was not good enough for the MartinLogans. Yes, it has the power to drive them, but it has no musicality. All brawns, very little finesse. All the details that I am used hearing were gone with this amp.Hi BDH55
What are you thoughts on a parasound Halo a21+ ? And also like someone said up here, do they give you that want to keep listening for days
It seems to be able to drive abd handle impedence swings down to 1.5ohm
Hey the mc152 would be under powered right? 2 channel 150 watts 8/4/2ohm .. mc301 300w mono
That is going to sound great!Big update! .. finally bit the bullet and have ordered a pair of Macintosh MC301 monoblocks coming my way in a few days. Shall update you all on when I play the first few pieces of music on the setup.
Taking a moment to thank many of you for some groundbreaking, transparent, and practical advice
Great choice mate!The amp has arrived and I'd like to report that it effortlessly drives my Aeries I's. Very nice amp to listen to, lots of detail, zero harshness, smooth. I got this one for $1700 Canadian and it's not the size of a car.
This Jeff Rowland Model 1 is rated at 60W per channel (that's a lie) and doubles down until 2 ohm. It looks to have 24 output devices inside and caps bigger than beer cans, speaker terminals have buss bars.
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Great choice mate!
This is the J-R Model 1, if I'm correct... although rated between 50-60w at 8 Ohms, it actually triples in power at 2 Ohms and can also handle impedence drops of less than 1 Ohm, which is ideal for stats!
Power output into 8 Ohms with amplifiers stating 100s & 100s of watts means nothing if they can't handle lower impedence swings. I've tried so many so called high powered amplifiers that simply couldn't drive stats, ran out of puff... Their specs are very impressive but upon actual trials the truth is embarrassing.
It's not all about watts & power, rather current capacity is what's needed, with obviously highly stable voltage. The JR M1 puts out something like 22amps to 55amps at a 2 Ohm load, that's a true high current design! It won't flinch one bit under stress. So it will be cruising along...
I've always admired JR's previous models, although his latest is designed around Class D amplification, there are only one or two of those that I've found to be decent. The other thing is nearly all of them accept only balanced inputs. With his older models, both SE & XLR were accepted.
Cheers, and enjoy those fine tunes!
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