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Upgrade Audiolab 8000S to AVsystem

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by sledwich, Jul 7, 2004.

  1. sledwich

    sledwich
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    Help!

    I want to upgrade my excellent Audiolab 8000S + 8000PX (poweramp) (+8000CD) to a full blown av system.

    Firstly I am looking for:

    1. same audio quality from an av amp and maybe trade in my existing kit for a new av amp.
    2. I really like the look of the tag av32r but is this a serious replacement for my kit?

    Hoping to look on the s/h market as my I dont want to exceed 2k on my spend.

    I have just bought a Sharp 37" LCD screen which is AWESOME :thumbsup: and need something to drive the audio side. The unit came with a DVD recorder which looks good with component cables connected.


    Any help is much appreciated. :lease:

    Thank you.
     
  2. russraff

    russraff
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    The AV32R is a good processor for AV and I am aware that TAG is the sucessor to Audiolab who you obviously like...
    However, there are a couple of points that need to be voiced.

    1) I have heard that the AV32R isn't too hot with music unless a direct analog bypass is present. This has something to do with the processor converting analog signals into digital then back to analog again. By "not too hot" what I mean is the 32 will be better than most mid-high end receivers.

    2) TAG perhaps isn't the company it used to be. I am not certain of Tag's future. Cyrus AV8, Meridian 56x or Rotel 1098 may be a better choice if this is a concern. Certainly Meridian's Trifeild mode is outstading for stereo stuff. Of all the companies, though, Cyrus probably errs more to Audiolab sound than most.

    3) I used to own an Audiolab 8000S and the amp is superb. If you are looking at a processor then you'd abviously be looking toward a very good poweramp. Certainly none of the current AV flagships will compare with the 8000S in terms of pure sound quality. The h/k 8500 gets somewhere near, but the sound character is very different to Audiolab. In order to get the same level of performance from a poweramp you'll be looking at the Rotel 1095 or a brace of Cyrus Smartpower, or better, amps.

    4) If you value CD replay, keep the CD player - most DVD players are very poor at CD replay, even some that you'd expect to be pretty good (pioneer 757, Denon 3800/2900).

    5) You could keep the Audiolab stuff and simply add a reasonable receiver, like Arcam's AVR300?

    Russell
     
  3. sledwich

    sledwich
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    Thanks for the reply.

    I hear what you are saying and agree. I think I may be telling myself that I can achieve the quality audio I am used to with a new AV, simply because its what I want to hear. Simply because it makes paying for it all easier if I part with the 8000 series.

    ok so looking at simply adding a receiver, the Arcam unit looks good. I have only had a quick look but will trail around for some reviews.

    Do you think that the lack of THX on this unit is a problem?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  4. roversd1

    roversd1
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    A second hand AV32R will knock the spots off the 8000S pre-amp section.

    Sorry to correct you Russraff - the AV32R was developed for music first well before the AV section was developed. It was important to TMA's 'Golden Ears' that the AV32R worked well for music before it could be released as an AV processor.

    Ok so TMA doesnt exist anymore but that doesnt make the products suddenly turn nasty overnight, development is still going on, there is full service back-up and the upgrade path is available as before.

    You can use the 8000S as a power amplifer for the surrounds and the P for the fronts or chop it in for a new multi channel amp.

    Source is important so choose wisely as you may end up disapointed
     
  5. sledwich

    sledwich
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    Thanks for the additional info.

    I guess the analog bypass is the important bit to ensure that I can maintain 2ch audio quality.

    When you say source is important, are you refering to the Sharp DVD source. Am I going to be losing a lot of quality using this device?

    Thanks again for your help.
     
  6. roversd1

    roversd1
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    Hi Sledwich

    Without wanting to get bogged down -

    ignore the 5.1 bypass, this plays no part in 2 channel audio 'quality'

    unless your budget stretches to a 'high end' DVD player (Linn, Meridian, TMA etc) you will likely end up keeping the 8000CD for music and have something else for DVD.

    A second hand AV32R will sort out your 2 channel and multi channel needs as long as you have good amplification and quality sources.

    In your position, I would be looking at Meridian and TMA processors as they both had excellent products with music in mind.

    Hope this helps.
     

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