Need advice on stereo amp.

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Advocate, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. Advocate

    Advocate
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    Hi all,

    I currently have a Pioneer SC-LX86 in my "Man Cave" in a 9.1 speaker setup, and no speakers in the lounge. After some deliberation I have decided that perhaps 9.1 is a bit overkill for the size of the man cave and have decided to move one of the front pair of floorstanders downstairs into the lounge and use them for listening to music. The speakers are Mordaunt Short Aviano 8's.

    So, I started looking at "cheap" stereo amplifiers, and quickly realised that I probably wasn't going to be happy with the sound. So my question(s) to you are,

    1) Would I be better off running the 15-20 metres or so of speaker cable from the man cave to the lounge and setting them up as Zone 2?

    or

    2) If not, which stereo amp should I be buying to match up with these speakers? Ideally no more than £200 but I could perhaps stretch to £250 if it was really worth it.

    I'm working on the assumption that the SC-LX can play two different audio sources in Zones 1 and 2.

    Thanks in advance for your advice :)

    Alistair
     
  2. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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  3. Advocate

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    Thanks for the reply Don, I had looked at the Yamaha but wasn't sure how it stacked up against the others. There seems to be a dearth of decent reviews of budget amps. I'll head on out and pick one up :)
     
  4. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    I was editing my reply when you posted

    It stacks up very well by all accounts when paired with the right speakers and i seen a few reports on the web from users who have the Aviano 6/8 and Yam AS500 combo who are very pleased. They seem to make a good paring.

    Let us know how you get on and your thoughts
     
  5. Advocate

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    I will, am looking forward to getting it set up, my first foray into hi-fi equipment! ;)
     
  6. Kwman

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    Although I don't have MS Aviano's I used to have a Pioneer SC LX82. I was unhappy with the stereo performance of the amp and out of interest connected up an old Marantz amp I had lying around. To my surprise I actually found the sound was better. The Marantz amp was probably around the £200-£250 mark. The speakers I had at that time were B&W CM9s.

    I know its not a proper answer to your question, but its what I experienced and hasmy ended up being my quest to get a home cinema system that was good with movies and music.

    Anyway its probably best if you can get a home demo so you can try before you buy if you can.
     
  7. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Pretty much similar to my own experience, but i started off with a stereo amp that went developed a problem after 18 years good service ( since sorted and sold) and thought i get a AV (Cambridge audio 540R V3) as i sorround sound and was under the impression that AV's were the singing and all dancing 1 box of tricks as it was being touted as such. films were great and although it was one of the more capable AV with music at the time, My mate brought round his old Nad stereo amp to test it with my speakers, and it slapped my av silly in stereo . Researched showed me that i would need to spend 3-4x the amount of a stereo amp on a AV to get somewhere close. Even then it was debatable. So i bought another stereo amp and kept my music separate from the visual.

    That was a while ago and AV 's are always evolving so things may of change somewhat. But generally, you will still be paying an hefty amount more than an equivalent stereo for the same stereo performance, though some are a lot better at than others throughout the price ranges.

    Pioneer AV's, while great with films are not really known for their music abilities though there are those who are happy with it.
    The AS500 should and hopefully will make the Aviano's sing as never before heard - musically
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2014
  8. illy406

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    i own the AS500 amp, brilliant amp with plenty power. paid £166 for mine, it was ex demo from Tribal UK (Hughes Direct)
     
  9. Advocate

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    Hi again,

    I have a confession to make. When I got to Richer Sounds to buy the Yamaha the manager in there offered to demo it with a pair of Aviano 8's, and tbh I thought it sounded a bit harsh (right word?) so I asked him if I could hear a Cambridge Audio amp, as I loved the musical ability of an old Azur AV amp that I sadly no longer have. Anyway, long story short is that I bought the Cambridge Audio Topaz AM10 and am over the moon with it.

    I no longer have to play my music loud to hear all the subtle details, it's like I'm listening to my music afresh all over again, I'm hearing details I've never heard before!

    Don't tell the missus but I think I'll have to save up for a mid range amp and speakers now ;)
     
  10. illy406

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    Was it harsh sounding with pure direct on ? Were was the treble setting set to on the AS500 ?
     
  11. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    I seen quite a few reports of the harshness of the AS500 when paired with brightish sounding speakers like Monitor Audio. I've not heard the Aviano so cannot comment on them. Its still a very nice amp but obviously not for you.

    So long as you are sorted and happy, that's all that matters.

    Enjoy.
     

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