Question Considering going back to separates but need a helping hand...

exponential

Active Member
Hi all.

I currently use an Arcam SR250 as a one-box solution for both 2 channel listening and HT duties *2 channel plus 2 subs*.
Although the Arcam is a fantastic unit, I am considering selling and going the separates route.

My speakers are Spendor A7's and feel they would benefit from some beefier amplification in the form of a stereo integrated with HT bypass.

With the sale of the Arcam and some piggy Bank money, I should have a budget of around 2.5k.
Can any of you amplifier aficionados point me in the right direction?
I have my eye on a Musical Fidelity M6si which seems to tick all the boxes but would it be a good pairing with my Spendors?
I'm open to any and all options and opinions (including constructive criticism) so please fire away..... :).

Just some additional info:

My plan is to buy a slimline Marantz NR1507/8/9 to handle my movie audio decoding and HDMI switching.
MiniDSP 2x4HD with DIRAC built in to give me my room correction and parametric EQ tinkering fix that I love and need.
I use REW regularly so using the miniDSP will be a joy. :)
Then comes the integrated.

I want something with plenty of power in reserve for 2 channel listening.
Plenty of headroom is the key.
I like to listen loud sometimes and that's where I feel the Arcam can struggle on occasion.
With only 90w per channel, it isn't exactly a powerhouse.

I'm happy to answer any questions you guys might have. Including questions on my sanity. :D
 

RBZ5416

Distinguished Member
Maybe consider adding a P49 to the SR250? That would give you the max 200W that the Spendors can handle & would save potential disappointment with pre-amp & processing in the Marantz. Or are you thinking more towards better management of the two subs with the Mini DSP?
 

exponential

Active Member
Maybe consider adding a P49 to the SR250? That would give you the max 200W that the Spendors can handle & would save potential disappointment with pre-amp & processing in the Marantz. Or are you thinking more towards better management of the two subs with the Mini DSP?
Hi.

I've just looked at the P49 and it's just as massive as the SR250. Definitely not wife friendly and would struggle to fit that anywhere!

Ok, I'll explain a wee bit my thinking process...

The stereo integrated that I end up opting for (if I go through with this) will be utilising the HT bypass output which essentially turns it into a power amp for the Marantz.
The Marantz is literally going to be just a HDMI switcher and audio decoder for movies.
The miniDSP will be inserted between the Marantz and Stereo integrated and that will handle all my DSP to include DIRAC.
The miniDSP will deal with the two subs and my fronts.

Any EQ or bass management will be disabled on the Marantz to allow the miniDSP to works its magic.

I will use the pre-outs of the integrated to my RME DAC which will serve as my pre-amp for 2 ch listening.
The RME ADI-2 DAC is an awesome bit of kit and will be a pre-amp, EQ and switcher for my music streamering/Cd playing.

I hope all that makes sense... ;)
 

3rdignis

Active Member
@exponential All your sources are digital?
HDMI switching through tv, will tv convert 5.1 to stereo over optical?
Will your dac run speakers and sub with addition of power amp?
 

3rdignis

Active Member
In my opinion high quality stereo is better than average quality surround sound for movies.
 

exponential

Active Member
@exponential All your sources are digital?
HDMI switching through tv, will tv convert 5.1 to stereo over optical?
Will your dac run speakers and sub with addition of power amp?
Hi.

Yes, all HDMI inputs are digital. I'll have to check the spec of the TV as its a 2017 LG OLED so not the most up to date really.
I see where you're going with this though... ;)

I could use the two HDMI inputs of the miniDSP you're talking about (now tv box and nvidia shield) to use for room correction/DSP and the remaining (Freesat box and PS4) for a straight up optical connection to my DAC.
 

exponential

Active Member
Doing it the way you suggest would eliminate the need for a HDMI switcher/decoder.....
 

Paul7777x

Well-known Member
If I’ve got all this the right way round, and perhaps I haven’t, then there’s no need for an integrated amp...?

A power amp is all you need?
 

exponential

Active Member
If I’ve got all this the right way round, and perhaps I haven’t, then there’s no need for an integrated amp...?

A power amp is all you need?
Hi Paul.

Initially, that's exactly what I was going to do. Buy a couple of monoblocks or stereo power amp but then I realised, I wanted to separate my music listening from my movie watching to create a more "pure" experience. Whether that is either achievable or needed is another question altogether.

As I have said earlier, there is nothing wrong with the Arcam at all but its an itch that just won't go away!
If I do this, I admit that I may come to regret it but, I truly believe that a well made, high quality stereo amp will outperform an AVR for music duties in almost every aspect. Of course, price is highly dependent on the quality you can expect to achieve but, in this price bracket (2-3k), I think, for example, a MF M6si vs the SR250 is a no brainer..... I'm open to criticism here Paul so fire away... ;)
 

Paul7777x

Well-known Member
My bad... I misspoke myself.

What I meant was, if you’re using the new Marantz as a switcher into the RME as the dac, then the RME into the DDRC-24, then you’d not need an integrated, just a power amp driven by the RMEs preamp output through the MiniDSP?

Or have I entirely misunderstood?
 

exponential

Active Member
My bad... I misspoke myself.

What I meant was, if you’re using the new Marantz as a switcher into the RME as the dac, then the RME into the DDRC-24, then you’d not need an integrated, just a power amp driven by the RMEs preamp output?

Or have I entirely misunderstood?
You've got it a bit jumbled up that's all mate.
The RME will deal with anything concerned with music and will be input into a fixed line level input on the integrated.
So the DAC will do all the D/A converting and pass it onto the integrated in a (hopefully), pure analogue path.

The Marantz will go into the HT bypass and the miniDSP will be put into the chain to give me my EQ/DIRAC required for movie watching.

I hope that's understandable?
 

Paul7777x

Well-known Member
Aha... I’m knackered now. So I’ll use that as an excuse. :thumbsup:

Then a whopping integrated would seem the way to go.

Iff you’re ok with used you might consider this. I can’t think of many speakers it won’t drive to mighty levels...

 

exponential

Active Member
Aha... I’m knackered now. So I’ll use that as an excuse. :thumbsup:

Then a whopping integrated would seem the way to go.

Iff you’re ok with used you might consider this. I can’t think of many speakers it won’t drive to mighty levels...

I use the "I'm tired" excuse all the time! :D

I spotted that amp yesterday and bypassed it because I didn't know what it was! :)

I have to sell the SR250 first before I can get my hands on anything.... :(
That's IF it sells as its quite a unique product that isn't to everyone's tastes.

I haven't decided what to do yet Paul so I'm just putting the feelers out at the moment.
I'll do some research on that model though as it seems to be something very special.
Musical Fidelity seems to keep cropping up though so they must be good...
 

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