High End Multi-Channel Amp?


Active Member
I've currently got a Meridian 561 Processor, Krell KAV-300i Stereo amp and Rotel RB993 3-Channel Amp and am considering replacing my amps with one 5+ Channel amp.

So far, the list of possible contenders is -

Rotel RMB-1095 £1,845.00
Copland CVA 535 £2,250.00
Arcam P7 £2,450.00
Meridian g55 £2,695.00
TAG McLaren 100/ 5 £2,995.00
Meridian 558 £3,395.00
Bryston 9b sst £4,000.00
Lexicon LX Power £5,000.00
Krell showcase £5,000.00

Are there any others to consider or any of the above which I should forget?

Must be at least 5 channels and within the price range of the amps listed above.



Well-known Member
try parasound halo a51 (5x250W @8ohm) for £3,500, or a52 (5x125W @8ohm) for £1,800. the primare power amps are pretty good but i have no idea how much they are (this kinda ball park though).


Active Member
Primare A30.5 £1700. Nice but on a purely power basis I think most of the above have it beaten.


Or if you can find it, have a look for a Cairn 5 channel amp. You likely havent heard of them but they got a good UK review and if I recall, was very economical (£3.5k ish)



Standard Member

I have recently owned the CVA535 and now own the Krell Showcase 5 channel amp (I have the matching Showcase processor). All I can say is that they are both excellent amps - the Krell is superior, however it is twice the cost and so it should be. Both are true high-end amps and the build quality is excellent on both.

The best performance is obtained by running either of these amps using balanced interconnects - I would say you gain at least 10% over normal connections.

The Krell has an abundance of power - and it never seems like it would run out of power. One other thing, you can upgrade the Showcase to 7 channels for only the cost of of the extra boards - well worth considering for the future!

If money is no problem, then go for the Krell, if not the Copland would be an excllent choice - I feel that IMHO these are the pick of the amps that you mention.



Active Member
Thanks Marck - did you get the deal that was on the Krells a while ago?


Standard Member
Yep, sure did. I sold my MC-1 to another forum member and managed to sell my 6 month old Copland - in the end it did not work out much different to changing just the processor - which I intended to do anyway!

The differnce has been amazing - the preamp section of the processor is awesome...

I am not sure if the deal can still be had - but it may be worth making a couple of calls - you never know....


Standard Member
Give the chord spm 1900 a demo. Cost about £4600 at retail but just about any dealer will give you a better price if you buy one of these.

Chord are my fav amps. Tight controlled bass, crisp clear but not bright treble and accurate punchy mids.


Standard Member
I second the Chord SPM 1900. Amazing...

From the amps listed above, the Copland, Arcam, Krell and Bryston would also have my sympathy vote. I don't really like the Meridian power amps (too soft and laidback), the Tag sounds a bit boring to me, the Lexicon a bit bright and flat and the Rotel would not make a big difference to what you already have,

Peter Baker

Novice Member
Not having heard the Chord I can't comment on this. I have heard many of the others though and would comment as follows;
TAG - I really did not like this amp, which sounded very harsh and thin to me.
Arcam - Also a bit lean for me, and seemed slow and a little bass light.
Meridian 558 - Good solid sound, with pretty tight bass and good sense of control. The new G55 might be even better, and is certainly prettier!! Cheaper as well.
Copland - A very easy going sound, very musical to listen to, but I agree with Marck that the Krell is a step up in all ways.
Krell - Really vey nice, bags of detail, nice quick sound (like a Naim) and pretty solid bass foundation.
Bryston - Another excellent performer, although perhaps a little too agressive for me. Really solid bass performance and grip.

Lots of these are really good, although I have sometimes found it difficult to isolate the performance of the Power amp, as most have been heard with the matching preamp, which brings its own signature, especially on music.

Best regards


Active Member
I have a Para 2205, which I have always thought really good value for the money.


Distinguished Member
I'd definitely add in my penny's worth re Chord amps,and say that whilst not cheap,their sound quality is very similar to that of Krell,with plenty of detail and power,but no emphasis on any part of the frequency spectrum.
I also found some of the older TAG multichannel amps quite poor,with surprisingly limited power and current delivery.

Of all the amps listed,I'd be looking at the Krell and Bryston for overall performance.

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