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High quality amplifers and cd players

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by SOUNDSTYLE, Sep 23, 2005.

  1. SOUNDSTYLE

    SOUNDSTYLE
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    I want to upgrade my amps and cd player in the near future, but want something near the high end of the market.

    I have about £2500 to spend and will want an amp, power amp and cd player.
    I have Monitor Audio Silver 6 speakers.

    At the moment I have a oldish Arcam alpaha 8R and 8P and Alpha 8 cd player.

    Do I go for something higher in the Arcam range, or look at some other makes.

    I like the smooth sound of the Arcams, but want extra power, at least 100 - 120 watts per channel.
    The Arcam's have about 55 watts per channel.

    I was going to buy some Tag amps a few months back when Hifibitz were selling them for £349, but they had sold out.

    Any ideas will be appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. CJROSS

    CJROSS
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    Personally I dont see the need to buy a pre-power below £2000 rrp, you get more bangs per buck from Integrateds IMHO. For £2500 you could have a pretty stunning £1500 Integrated ie Moon I-5, Bow Wazoo XL, Krell 400I, and many more add £1000 for disc spinner (I would go for a top range DVD spinner myself). Then add a DAC at a later stage to tailor system.

    PS Primare/Copeland/Sugden are brands that I equate to smoothe but powerful if thats any help in your quest.
     
  3. deaf cat

    deaf cat
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    Just checking, you are actually going to audition a few bits and pieces before you buy, yes.....
     
  4. alexs2

    alexs2
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    CJ's suggestion re integraed amps is well worth looking into,and the Moon,and especially Krell 400i are both superb amps,either new or used,and the latter has enormous reserves of power for it's size,as well as sounding good overall.

    My own preference is for Krell,but that is a personal bias,and you would need to try one of these before deciding on the overall sound of your system....do you intend to keep the speakers or upgrade?
     
  5. SOUNDSTYLE

    SOUNDSTYLE
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    I will be demoing the amps before I buy, but want to know what to look for first.

    Integrated amps: what's the difference between other amps?

    I will be keeping my Monitor Audio Silver 6 speakers for the time being.
     
  6. SOUNDSTYLE

    SOUNDSTYLE
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    I will need a phonostage aswell.
     
  7. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Exposure would work well with MA series. As would Densen. An integrated amp as CJ has stated would probably be the best bet for the money.
    Integrated amps used to be frowned upon but in the last few years the quality has greatly improved. Unless you're spending a few thousand on a pre/power amp an integrated will perform equally as well as most pre/power combo's. Plus you don't have the extra cost of cabling and another box to find a home for.
    A system that stayed with me for a long time was Exposure 3010 CDP and integrated amp (added a power amp later) and MA S6's. Very easy to listen to.
    Densen would be Beat 200 pre/300 power should get them for about £1650.
    I'd almost be inclined to add a DAC64 (£750 - ebay) to the existing CDP (Depending on what state it's in) and do it that way. Pretty sure that would give you a pretty decent system for a few years.
     
  8. alexs2

    alexs2
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    As you probably know,an integrated is simply a pre and power amp "integrated" into a single box.
    There are advantages and disadvantages to both techniques,but in terms of an integrated,you get the advantages of smaller space,and the conveniences of a single box solution,and performance can be excellent,given a good design,and components,which would be the case in all of the amps recommended above.

    I've tried the Krell 300i(the predecessor to the 400i) and found it to be an excellent amp by any standards,with plenty of reserve,and the ability to do justice to some expensive and demanding speakers.
    The Densen,Moon and Bow all have excellent reviews,but as with all amps,sound different,and will have different degrees of synergy with your speakers.
     
  9. AnilS

    AnilS
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    Soundstyle, please look at my system in my sig.

    All in (excluding cables), the system cost £2000. The Audiolabs partnered with the Exposure 2010 power amps makes a stunning sound through the MA S8s.

    Each 2010 bought new from HiFiBitz for £250 are a bargain, thats why I had two at that price :D . The 8000C has a phono stage, but has a very clinical sound, the opposite of my previous Arcam, which I now realised held back detail.

    As you already have the speakers, you have a generous budget, so get the best sound you can afford. Please try the Exposure range, its a best kept secret and a very nice surprise. :smashin:

    AnilS.
     
  10. nirmal

    nirmal
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    Hi Soundstyle,
    May I recommend a Bryston amplifier (any in their range). 20 years no questions asked warranty, power enough to drive any speaker till the kingdom comes, and sound quality so neutral that it is the choice of most recording studios and professional listening rooms around the world. No need to upgrade every 2 or three years either! If you do upgrade, you'll end up adding more bryston kit to your existing setup rather than selling off what you have. If you do resell it, you will get the best resale value for any hi-fi component on earth! I am not exaggerating! Try one and you will be hooked to the brand for life! Dont buy it from the high street stores though. Try the pro-audio distributors; shop around, and you will get them for about 50% of high street prices.


    Cheers,
    Nirmal :)
     
  11. dynamic turtle

    dynamic turtle
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    Christ, I'd hate to have to choose just ONE amplifier under £2000. There are so many excellent valve & solid state integrateds (don't bother with pre-power/monoblocks mate - waste of time at this price level IMHO) available at that price, it's difficult to know where to begin. TBH, I think I'd be happy with an amp from any of the following:

    Lavardin
    Densen
    Pathos
    Unison
    Copland
    Stello
    Primare
    Audio Analogue
    Prima Luna
    Consonance
    Audio Research
    Moon Audio

    Etc etc. I could go on for a while! You're really spoilt for choice.

    CD player is a little harder. I certainly wouldn't spend more than £500. You could always go down the DAC route, seeing as you have a couple of perfectly acceptable dvd transports already. My top choice at this level would be the NAD S500, but they're rarer than NHS dentists. I also like the AA Paganini.

    Rgds,
    DT
     
  12. SOUNDSTYLE

    SOUNDSTYLE
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    Thanks for all the replies.
    Any idea where I can get some of these amps at good prices online.
    My nearest Hifi specialist is Sevenoaks in Bristol, but am not too sure what makes they sell.
    I don't want to pay top dollar if I can help it, which I know they will charge for these type of amps.

    Moon audio looks tempting (which I've looked into on the net), but will look at Exposure and Bryston, and some of the others aswell.

    Is it possible for any links to these amps: reviews etc.
    I spent a whole day looking for the Moon amp alone!

    I want to make sure that I'm going for the right amp when the time comes to buy one.
     
  13. harv

    harv
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    there is an audio t branch on park st in bristol and radfords some where around there too... I've used Shadow audio a couple of times they're up in scotland but will send items via courier with a 14 day trial period. They have usually have a good hi-end second hand section... worth a look anyway

    http://www.shadowaudio.co.uk/usedequipment/index.htm

    can be a bit little pricey... but would probably take your old stuff in p/x
     
  14. nirmal

    nirmal
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    For bryston try http://www.advancedsounds.co.uk/ they will get it for you even if they dont stock it.
    I dont know if they do demos, but you'll get an excellent deal from them :smashin: . Look up brystons design philosophy :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: at http://www.bryston.ca/ and the places that use them around the world :cool: .

    Cheers,
    Nirmal :)
     

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