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Parasound Halo and B&W speakers

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by Klop, Feb 27, 2004.

  1. Klop

    Klop
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    Hi,

    I'm considering buying the following Parasound Halo components:
    - Halo C2 Controller
    - Halo A52 Amplifier

    And want to pair them with my B&W speakers:
    - B&W CDM 7NT front speakers
    - B&W CDM CNT center speaker
    - B&W DM600 S3 surround speakers

    But how will the Parasound Halo combination sonically sound with B&W speakers (or those I got)? How will they sound (warmth or sharpness/cold, bass, tweeter) when paired with B&W's?

    Or are the Parasound Halo components not suitable? Is there other more suitable components?

    \Klop
     
  2. figlio

    figlio
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    When you are going to spend that amount of money it is better to demo the equipment first.

    B&W are very good speakers and olso parasound they had very good reviews. You have to like them not every one likes the same equipment

    It is better to ask RAGS on this forum he have some B&W speakers with parasound and he seems to love them.
     
  3. RobDickinson

    RobDickinson
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    Agreed, I do like B&W speakers but its all personal taste. What sounds good to 99% of people may sound poor to you, listening is the only way.

    I found B&W to be poor at low volumes, but great when cranked up some (was considering CM4's at the time). Tried several other speakers in same price range and ended up with Monitor audio's, similar to B&W , cheaper, and better at low volume (and mag shielded which the cm4's wernt).

    I'd expect to hear the combination before I bouyght but finding a dealer with both ready to dem may be hard, IMO if thats the case I'd dem the speakers first and find the amps to drive them 2nd.
     
  4. bobgriffiths

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    With the cost of the Parasound wont a dealer let you have a home demo? some stores which shut sundays will at the least let you use the shop demo equipment if you pick it up late saturday and bring it back on the monday morning if you pay for it on a card and will refund it back if you dont like it .
    Dems in stores are not your room,your speakers (i take it you already have the speakers from the comment" my speakers"),your source etc so give you just a vague idea of what it will sound like.
    Any good dealer will do the above at the very least.
    If they wont how helpful will they be if something goes wrong?
    I used to manage a hi fi store and we used to do this regularly with £100 cd players so i cant see the objections with the more expensive parasound.
    By the way take care of the gear it must obviously come back in the same condition it came from the store or you would be in line for charges.
    remember its not cheeky to ask if they will loan the gear often they dont know what you want unless you ask.
     
  5. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    Rags is definately the person to ask, as he's running the C2 and A52 combo, along with Nautilus 805s I think. He loves 'em, and they're perfect for his room as it's bloody bright:)
     
  6. Daneel

    Daneel
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    I'm using a Parasound A23 with B&W 602 S3 atm and although it has a lot of strong points, it's a bit on the harsh side and the A23 will be going back. It could be down to me using my Pioneer 2011 as a pre-amp though so I'm trying a Primate SPA20 in that roll tomorrow. I'll update my thread with the results. Like the others said though, if you are spending that kind of mney you really need to demo.
     
  7. rags

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    Actually im running a C2 controller with the A52's bigger brother the A51. I have Nautilus 805's and a HTM2 centre and yes I do love the sound. My room is very lightly furnished with a wooden floor and the top end is still not harsh.

    I used to run M&K 850's which sounded quite bright in the room and hence I changed speakers. I would not describe the Halo kit as bright, in fact probably the opposite. I used to own a Rotel 1095 with a TAG processor and the 850's sounded brighter than with the Parasound kit (I think I made this comment to Smurfin when he came round as well) I havent heard the Halo kit with the CDM NT range so am not going to comment of how the combo will sound - there are so many variables, the biggest being your own preference. I do know that the B&W 600 series is quite a bright speaker when driven hard.

    What I can say is that the amp will give most speakers a good spanking without straining and the C2 controller has razor sharp steering and picks up the faintest of sounds. Rear channel performance with DTS and DD is exemplary and the front aint half bad either. It is musically rather nice to. In my opinion it is better than offerings from Arcam, TAG, Bryston etc but that is a matter of personal taste. The components are beautifully built (the amp especially), look fantastic and come with two rather nifty remotes and a calibration mic. Parasound aftercare has also been flawless - I recently upgraded my software and they guided me through the whole process on a step by step basis. They are selling like hotcakes in the States and deservedly so - every review has been good news for the company. Unfortunately they dont have the same recognition in the UK although through recent magazine reviews that may be changing.

    I may chop and change my speakers and other components but the C2 and A51 are definately here to stay.
     
  8. dts_boy

    dts_boy
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    i'm with rags on this, i also have the halo c2 and a52, albeit with M&K speakers and find the sound perfect. i have sinice tried the 805s, they are great but i couldn't fit the centre speaker into my rack so the M&Ks are there to stay. wherabouts are you, i am sure that a local dealer will at least give you the option of a home demo if you ask. never be afraid of asking, at the end of the day there will always be a dealer looking to make a sale and you shouldn't have to beg for good service!!!
     
  9. Daneel

    Daneel
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    As I guessed switching the Pioneer for a Primare preamp took the edge off. I tried it this morning, briefly.
     
  10. rags

    rags
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    Daneel - so how is the Primare, Parasound and B&W combo sounding ?
     
  11. mutley

    mutley
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    runnig a meridian 561 with parasound 1205 and B&W 602 S3.

    Just great. (i also had a 2011, and although it's a great receiver, it isn't the best to combine with an amp lie that...)
     
  12. Daneel

    Daneel
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    Rags, I borrowed Guy's Primare SP20 for an hour in the morning. As I said it softened the edges a bit and generally improved the musicality while retaining good punch and clarity.

    I tried using the SP20's own amps and it sounded more pleasant than the A23 on its own, but lost some clarity and power. The SP20 is sold now I think on Ebay. The problem with the Primare is that if it was to be paired to less crisp speakers, ie if I move away from B&W, the sound will probably be too soft.

    What I did work out though is that the harshness wasn't the fault of the Parasound which as far as I can tell is pretty neutral, has good detail and is generally a sound buy. Just be careful with component matching and you will love B&W.

    All of this is just my opinion of course and the Parasound with the Pioneer did soften from my initial impression. Whether that was me getting used to it or the amp chainging (it had not been used for several months) I cannot say. Guy liked the sound as it was, he didn't feel it was harsh.
     
  13. rags

    rags
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    Daneel - where are you getting the A23 for £500 ? I might want a 2 channel amp. That lists at about £750 I think so if yours is a new one thats a very good deal.
     
  14. Klop

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    Rags: My room is also very lightly furnished and have wooden floor - so now I'm even more tempted. I will talk to my local dealer and have him over for a home demo. Like you I also have the Arcam DV88 Plus DVD player and I take it that it pairs perfect with the Parasound kit?

    dts_boy: I live in Copenhagen, Denmark :) And my local dealer do home demos - I was just seeking some advice before hearing them.
     
  15. Daneel

    Daneel
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    rags: It's ex-demo from my local dealer.
     

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