Keep my amps or change them?

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by willharris10, Feb 3, 2009.

  1. willharris10

    willharris10
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,297
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +140
    As you can see from my signature, I've got a lovely old AVC-A10SE which I love. First bit of proper kit I bought back in 2002. And last year I added an Audiolab 7 channel power amplifier but not in the way you might expect.

    The Audiolab can have 4 of it's channels bridged into 2, so what I've done is use a Y phono cable to split the pre-out signal for the front pair of speakers and send 2 phonos from each channel into the Audiolab, the bass drivers are running off the bridged channels and the treble off a normal channel.

    So in effect I'm using 6 channels to drive 2 speakers. Which is probably very silly, but seems to work.

    What it did was allow me to go 7.1 because by doing this, the front left and right channels on the Denon were re-allocated to the new rear pair.

    So what I'm asking is should I keep this set-up when I get a decent BluRay player like the Denon DVD3800BD (connected using multichannel analogues) or upgrade the amp to one of the more recent Denons, second hand. I was thinking of a nice Denon AVC-A1SR which is a 7 channel animal. The only thing is, if I did this, would I keep the Audiolab or let the Denon power the front pair, and give up on the bi-amping. Or get the A1SR and let it bi-amp the centre and keep the Audiolab, or get a modern HDMI equiped amp like the Pioneer LX81 and have done with the whole thing!

    What do you all think? Could just keep what I've got and get the BD player and enjoy, but always wondering whether I'm slightly mad and want a bit of advice.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2009
  2. Mark.Yudkin

    Mark.Yudkin
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    Messages:
    10,045
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Zurich, CH
    Ratings:
    +1,542
    If you intend to ue the analogue outputs for bluray, there's no real reason to change. If you intend to use HDMI connectivity, you need to upgrade to a player with full support for audio over HDMI. The AVC-A1SR does not have this connectivity, the Pioneer SC-LX81 does.
     
  3. willharris10

    willharris10
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,297
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +140
    I agree on the HDMI front. The only reason to go for an AVC-A1SR was to use it on all 7 channels and allow me to sell my Audiolab and current Denon. If I was using a Denon 3800 BluRay player with the analogues, would an AVC-A1SR sound better than my current combo do you think? Obviously I wouldn't be bi-amping the fronts, but do I really need to anyway?
     
  4. Mark.Yudkin

    Mark.Yudkin
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    Messages:
    10,045
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Zurich, CH
    Ratings:
    +1,542
    Obviously you'll have to audition for yourself, but my gut feeling is that you wouldn't hear any improvement in this scenario.

    "To biamp or not" is one of the more controversial subjects here, at least with limited budgets. Since I own front speakers where the whole concept of biamping is meaningless, I''ll just say that with a limited budget, 1 better power amp is often preferable to 2 cheaper power amps (quality over grunt), but you'll need to perform your own comparisons.

    Perhaps the AVC-A1HD might be worth auditioning as a single point of consolidation?
     
  5. willharris10

    willharris10
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,297
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +140
    I would but it's so expensive.

    Maybe in a few years. First I thought I'd try and get hold of a POA-T10 second hand and sell the Audiolab which should free up some money for the DVD3800BD later in the year.

    Anyone with a POA-T10 in champagne finish, I've put up an ad in the classifieds, please do get in touch!
     
  6. Mark.Yudkin

    Mark.Yudkin
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    Messages:
    10,045
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Zurich, CH
    Ratings:
    +1,542
    Just an idea: rather than regular small updates that yield only minimal improvements, why not save up over a longer period and then splash out on a major improvement? Although you may have slightly lower performance during the savings period, at the end you'll have an improvement that is substantially over what you'll otherwise have been able to afford and it ought to last a few years. Well, that's what I did anyway.
     
  7. willharris10

    willharris10
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,297
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +140
    I'm doing that as we speak. Next on the list are:

    Denon DVD3800BD or Pioneer BDP-91
    then
    SVS PB13 Ultra

    and regarding the amp, I'm seriously considering a high quality 2 channel amp or 3 channel for the fronts. Only question is, what to buy? The POA-T10 was built to partner my main amp, so it's an obvious choice to put with it but not a big step up, or a Rotel or a Parasound, which would be a big step up. Obviously second hand on these poweramps. What would you recommend?
     
  8. TopMeTom

    TopMeTom
    Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Messages:
    8,332
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    106
    Ratings:
    +261
    There is a 3 channel Arcam in the classifieds at the moment, worth a look?
     
  9. willharris10

    willharris10
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,297
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +140
    Kind suggestion, but now selling my Audiolab in the Classifieds. It's a wonderful amp, but I'm going for a simpler HDMI main amp, so don't need it anymore.
     
  10. TopMeTom

    TopMeTom
    Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Messages:
    8,332
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    106
    Ratings:
    +261
    Whereas I am trying to go the other way....
     

Share This Page

Loading...