ht bypass amp for Denon 6500 and MA Silver 500?

famasfilms

Banned
Recently upgraded my system to Denon 6500 avr and MA Silver 500 7g, been listening to a lot more music as a result and just added a Denon turntable.

Wondering how much improvement I'd get by adding a stereo amp. The Denon 6500 was picked up used, the MA's were new but scored a good deal via ebay - so if I can get a good bargain on an app then I'd consider it - £500 budget, but can increase for a good deal. Want to make sure I'm taking full advantage of the speakers.

Music is mostly streaming via Spotify or Amazon Music. I'm either using the desktop apps to play from my PC (although not very often because the speakers being behind the desk isn't an optimal listening position). So since upgrading I'm usually on my sofa, using HEOS on phone or Spotify phone app casting to the AVR. I also have a Chromecast w GTV with Spotify/Amazon music although this requires the TV to be on so no point using it. I also have some MP3s on PC but this folder is 20+ years old and I barely ever go into it.

I also have the Denon turntable connected to phono input on AVR
 

Jester1066

Well-known Member
Here's a list of stereo amps with HT Bypass:


Your budget might be on the low side, but you may find an absolute bargain on ebay etc

I myself use an Audiolab 6000A for all my music duties, paired with MA Silver 6g 300's.
 

famasfilms

Banned
Here's a list of stereo amps with HT Bypass:


Your budget might be on the low side, but you may find an absolute bargain on ebay etc

I myself use an Audiolab 6000A for all my music duties, paired with MA Silver 6g 300's.

Yeah, I was just bidding on an Audiolab 8300a that eventually went for £510 - so I'd rather try and get a used bargain rather than pay full price
 

gibbsy

Moderator
For around four years I ran a Rega Elicit-R alongside both a Denon X6200 and my current X6500. There's no comparison.
 

famasfilms

Banned
The audiolab 8300a actually got offered to me after the auction, presumably because the buyer was in the USA. So I've snapped that up. The alternative would be having that "itch" whilst listening with my current setup wondering how much improvement a separate amp would be.

Edit - couldn't complete the payment on my phone, so I paused a little bit - the offer is valid until tomorrow anyway.

I understand the 8300a amp doesn't have an onboard dac, and the DAC is provded by the equivalent cd player in the range, or bluetooth. So presumably everything eg streaming, would still go through the Denon as opposed to straight to the amp? No issue quality wise doing it this way?

Also, the amp = 2 x 75W RMS (8Ω), and recommend amp specs for the Silver 500s = 80-250w but presumably the 5w difference is negligible especially in a 5m x 3.7m room which won't be blasting out high volume?
 
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famasfilms

Banned
Also, if ht-bypass just turns an integrated amp into a power amplifier - why not just buy a power amp instead? Is it because some people want/need extra inputs?
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Also, if ht-bypass just turns an integrated amp into a power amplifier - why not just buy a power amp instead? Is it because some people want/need extra inputs?
If the intention is to keep all music sources going through the AV amp then all that is need to provide extra power is a simple power amp. A power amp will just amplify the audio from the AV amps own pre-amp circuit without colouration for good or for bad.

The reason to use a stereo amp with HT by-pass is to enable the same speakers to be used for both HT and music but have a superior stereo music performance from a stereo amp. Naturally all the music is then played just through the stereo amp with the AV amp playing not part whatsoever. The power amp side of the integrated stereo amp does exactly the same job as a bare bones power amp would do.

You are basically running two separate systems using the same front speakers. It's a simple connection between AV amp and stereo amp that does work very well.
 

Timmy C

Distinguished Member
As gibbsy has suggested above, you don't want any of your 2 channel music going anywhere near the avr and that can be left switched off completely for music listening. You are probablly going to want to look at getting an offboard DAC though unless you do the majority of listening with the turntable.
 

famasfilms

Banned
If the intention is to keep all music sources going through the AV amp then all that is need to provide extra power is a simple power amp. A power amp will just amplify the audio from the AV amps own pre-amp circuit without colouration for good or for bad.

The reason to use a stereo amp with HT by-pass is to enable the same speakers to be used for both HT and music but have a superior stereo music performance from a stereo amp. Naturally all the music is then played just through the stereo amp with the AV amp playing not part whatsoever. The power amp side of the integrated stereo amp does exactly the same job as a bare bones power amp would do.

Ok thanks, that's what I couldn't get my head around.

So AVR + power amp = better quality via more power, taking load off avr etc

AVR + stereo/integrated amp = better quality via different/better/specialised "hardware"/circuitry and additional power

Does it make any difference having the Denon in between a streaming source and the stereo amp? e.g

Phone with HEOS-----> Amazon Music HD ------> Denon ------->ht bypass----> stereo amp

Or is it preferable to skip the Denon as much as possible, eg if the stereo amp has its own bluetooth or streaming hardware?

The other point to consider is PC use - I don't really sit at my desk and listen to music because L/C/R are at a right angle to the desk - but that doesn't matter for youtube videos and stuff. If I don't want to use the stereo amp, is it just a case of not switching it on or when you have a separate amp to the denon pre-outs it's always using those pre outs regardless of the power?

Ok, I think @Timmy C just answered my questions whilst I was writing!

Ok, so I would actually leave the Denon off most of the time except when I wanted to watch a movie, tv show etc. For music and general PC use, I would just turn the stereo amp on

And to leave Denon out of the equation as much as possible the new stereo amp needs either internal or external bluetooth/dac?
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Ok, so I would actually leave the Denon off most of the time except when I wanted to watch a movie, tv show etc

For music and general PC use, I would just turn the stereo amp on
For music stereo amp only.


For TV and film Denon and the stereo amp running. The volume of the stereo is then controlled by the Denon. All you have to do once the stereo amp is connected by the Denon's pre-outs is to run Audyssey.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Either buy a stereo amp with HT by-pass and it's own built in DAC or use an external DAC. The DAC would only need to be connected to the music source and direct to the stereo amp. The Denon is left completely out of the music circuit.
 

famasfilms

Banned
Either buy a stereo amp with HT by-pass and it's own built in DAC or use an external DAC. The DAC would only need to be connected to the music source and direct to the stereo amp. The Denon is left completely out of the music circuit.

Thanks, semi tempted to copy you and get a Rega Elicit-R - I just had a thread up where you mentioned what DAC you had/recommended but closed it if you can remind me? NM found it, the irDAC
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Thanks, semi tempted to copy you and get a Rega Elicit-R - I just had a thread up where you mentioned what DAC you had/recommended but closed it if you can remind me? NM found it, the irDAC
Never needed an external DAC as I just play CD or SACDs. I have a Denon SACD player connected by analogue. The old Elicit-R, which I owned, is now discontinued and a new model on the horizon and the price has rose dramatically to £2000.

Sorry to see my Elicit go but it was not getting used for music on a regular basis and my X6500 certainly doesn't need the power. I have to listen to late night music through headphones and that's when I do 95% of my music listening.
 

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