Stuck on choosing an amp - ~ £500

oxidising

Standard Member
I'm stuck on choosing an amp in the £500 range to power two Dali Oberon 5s. I'm torn between a Yamaha AS801 or a Rega Elex-R which is ~ £150 more expensive. I also like the look of the Yamaha and having the tone dials though I supposed I'd rarely use those. Can anyone recommend one over the other or something completely different?
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Let me know where you can get either for £500 :) What are your sources?
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Hah I meant what are your sources i.e. CD player
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Types of music? Can you audition either at home?
 

oxidising

Standard Member
A mix of dance, rock, blues and jazz, so quite a wide range really. I can't audition either unfortunately, I'm taking a bit of a gamble I know, but hey.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Yup but hard not to sometimes. It's a hard one to call as judging by amp stereotypes I'd have said Yamaha for rock and Rega for blues & jazz. If there's any way you can do this I'd try the Rega and if you don't like it sell it and get the Yamaha.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I'm stuck on choosing an amp in the £500 range to power two Dali Oberon 5s....

- Yamaha AS801
- Rega Elex-R which is ~ £150 more expensive....

Those are very different amps that do very different things. For example, I believe later you said one of you main sources was a PC. The Yamaha AS801 has a USB-PC connection for direct connect to a computer for transferring Audio between the two.

The Yamaha AS801 also has 1xOptical and 1xCoaxial input in addition to the USB-PC. Further it have Phono-In, Sub-Out, and Tone Controls, plus a pretty healthy 100w/ch at low distortion.

The Rega amps in general are very minimalistic. That is, they have a Source Select and a Volume Control and that is pretty much it - No DAC, a single set of Speaker Terminals, No Phono. Realistically about 70w/ch to 8 ohms. Note the 90w/ch is to SIX ohms.

But indisputable, the Rega are great sounding amps. But what I am getting at is that very very likely you do not need a generic Amp, you need a specific amp to do a specific job, to connect to a specfic set or Source Devices.

Find the amp that specifically does the JOB that you specifically need done. As mentioned before, you are connecting to a Computer, so having a USB DAC is an advantage.

The Yamaha AS801 is at the TOP of Yamaha's Consumer line of product. To go one model up from there is a very massive increase in price.

Quickly checking the Yamaha AS801 is £679 from the source I checked.

The Rega Elex-R is about £949 from a different source.

Yamaha always represents High Value in an Amp. But Rega represents very high sound quality.

But as I said, you do not need a generic Amp, you need an Amp to suit your specific needs. Those requirements and needed feature will help guide you to the amp that will best do the job specifically for YOU.

Offering an alternative to consider -

Rotel A14, 80w/ch, Optical, Coaxial, USB-PC DAC, Bluetooth, Phono-In, Pre-Out - £899 -





This fall somewhere between the other two suggested.

Steve/bluewizard
 
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daytona600

Active Member
£600 Musical fidelity M2SI well worth the extra outlay one of the best under £1500
recently they where £799 no bells , no whistles , no dac , no streamer , no headphones
just a good old school hifi amp
 

Paul7777x

Distinguished Member
£600 Musical fidelity M2SI well worth the extra outlay one of the best under £1500
recently they where £799 no bells , no whistles , no dac , no streamer , no headphones
just a good old school hifi amp

I’d be tempted by this one.

A rock solid, simple amp.

A streamer can be added for a couple of quid. Or a couple of hundred when the cash pile recovers. Or anything in between.

I’d always recommend getting the amplification for your speakers right if you plan on keeping it a long time. And the MF is a bargain and will handle anything your speaker loads can fling at it.
 

Paul7777x

Distinguished Member

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I might have been reading two separate threads and gotten them mixed up. Here is a more affordable ROTEL A12 (60w/ch, DAC, £699) -


Still a bit over budget.

Of course for absolute bargains, the Yamaha are good quality, lots of Power, and lots of feature. I suggest you at least look at these -




For me, Yamaha always wins for high value, but I also concede that this is not necessarily what everyone is looking for. The range of price on the Three Yamaha above are from £595 to £670. Pretty close to your stated budget.

Steve/bluewizard
 
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Hixs

Distinguished Member
The AS701 shouldn't sniffed at if the 801 is out of budget. Similar power (more then you'll likely need), same build quality etc the only other real difference is the 801 has a 'better' dac, but how much of a audible difference that will make....? (going from memory here, so may be other minor differences)

Should be around 499 I think.

Certainly would be on my sub 500 list if buying new.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
The AS701 shouldn't sniffed at if the 801 is out of budget....

The Yamaha AS701, 100w/ch, DAC (24b/192k, 1xOpt, 1xCoax), Phono, Sub-Out - £499 -


This one is dead on your budget. It does not have USB-PC, and it has a 24b/192k DAC which is as much as you will ever need. (AS801 - PCM 384kHz/32*bit , 2.8MHz/5.6MHz DSD)

You could use Analog Out from you Computer, as most computers today have very high-res DACs inside. And in the future, if you so desire, there are a number of USB-PC and USB-only DACs to choose from.




Just to name a few. If you really want to save money, Amazon-UK has quite a range of low-cost Chinese DACs.

Amazon-UK Search - DAC Digital to Analog Converter

Links to Yamaha Specs -




The Yamaha RN803 does not have USB-PC, but given that it has Network Streaming, it doesn't really need it.

Steve/bluewizard
 

degsy

Active Member
£600 Musical fidelity M2SI well worth the extra outlay one of the best under £1500
recently they where £799 no bells , no whistles , no dac , no streamer , no headphones
just a good old school hifi amp
+1 for this. I have the MF M3i (similar power spec) and it is a good no frills amplifier
 

oxidising

Standard Member
Thanks for all these great suggestions! I'm definitely open to second hand as there seems to be some really good deals available.
 

oxidising

Standard Member
Would anyone recommend the Musical fidelity M2SI over the Rega Elex-R? I've found both for a similar price but the M2SI comes with a 2 year warranty which is attractive, but then the Rega is widely very well reviewed.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
The Elex has a good phono input which is lacking on the MF if that is important. I'd say the Rega but there again I'm a Rega owner and enjoy their signature.
 

TB Rich

Well-known Member
Would anyone recommend the Musical fidelity M2SI over the Rega Elex-R? I've found both for a similar price but the M2SI comes with a 2 year warranty which is attractive, but then the Rega is widely very well reviewed.

Depends if you need it or not, but the MF has HT-bypass whereas the Rega does not.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Depends if you need it or not, but the MF has HT-bypass whereas the Rega does not.
Certainly a consideration worth pointing out. The first model in the Rega range to have HT by-pass is the Elicit-R which is a wonderous amp. :smashin:
 

oxidising

Standard Member
I've heard that the bass on the Elex-R isn't great, listening to dance music bass is something I like to hear, have you noticed any bass lacking @gibbsy ?
 

TB Rich

Well-known Member
Just to muddy the waters even more, the Cyrus One is currently £599 @ Audio Affair which I think is a real bargain and I think would be my choice at that price point. It's a great amp and at the Bristol Hifi show a couple of years ago Cyrus actually had it paired with some Dali for what it's worth (think it was Opticon 5's).
 

gibbsy

Moderator
I've heard that the bass on the Elex-R isn't great, listening to dance music bass is something I like to hear, have you noticed any bass lacking @gibbsy ?
I've got the Elicit-R. It's fast bass response was one of the reasons I went for it. I'm not into heavy bass, I like to hear the bass guitar note starting and finishing as well as drum strikes. For this the Rega Elicit was exceptional. Naim would be better for dance music as it's bass is deeper and less controlled with KEF speakers.

I prefer singer songwriters and folk rock. Old fella see, remember the days of good music.:thumbsup:
 

AudioJosh

Active Member
If sub £500 is your budget then I can't help but recommend the Cambridge CXA80, it's a fabulous integrated amp and there are currently refurb models on eBay here for £390 (sold by Cambridge themselves - Silver models also available).

Not a bad deal. I own one myself and love it.

The Yamaha AS series are also very good if you're considering buying one. I have a AS-501 which is a great amp and I know Audioholics love the AS-801.
 

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