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Upgrade to TAG/Rotel system?

Discussion in 'TAG McLaren Audio Owners' Forum' started by P Adams, Oct 28, 2003.

  1. P Adams

    P Adams
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    Hi

    My wife kindly allowed me to spend out on an AV32R EX 7.1, a Rotel RMB 1075 power amp and a Toshiba SD900E DVD player last year. It's all linked to a Mordaunt Short T1000 centre, Mordaunt Short MS208 floorstanders and Mission 77DS surrounds with a REL Q150 sub so the electronics are probably too good for the speakers, but...

    It sounds fantastic, especially as originally all I was aiming for was a Denon or Pioneer receiver. This set up replaced a Yamaha 2070 Pro Logic amp and Toshiba 220 DVD player. I hadn't heard our DVD collection in Dolby Digital or DTS up until August 2002!!!

    The question is do I start allocating funds towards upgrading the TAG or Rotel? At the moment we only use 5.1 but eventually would like to utilise EX/ES encoding.

    In your humble opinion which upgrades would bring about the best value in 'sound for pound' stakes. I am not really interested in DVD audio discs so I suppose the 5.1 bypass is a little over the top. 192khz DACs sound interesting and as for the dual processors! My system software is V3.7 and I have PL2 and HDCD activated but not DTS NEO 6.

    I'm not complaining, the set-up sounds awesome but I want to make the most out of the potential there.

    Thanks in advance

    PA:)
     
  2. rags

    rags
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    Hi PA,

    In terms of amp and processor I have a similar setup to yours - a lower processor -AV30R but a more powerful amp -Rotel 1095. I use them with M and K speakers. A few days ago I bought home an AV32R BP192 and tried it with a number of dvd's and cd's. I didnt think it was a worthwhile swap - the noise levels were slightly lower than the AV30R - there will probably not be a notable difference in noise levels between your AV32R and a BP192- but overall there was nothing that stood out as being different. Now a dual processor version may be significantly better as it should be given the high price but I havent tried one.

    To cut a long story short I went for a Parasound Halo C2 as this did present a significantly better sound but to be fair this does bring you into TAG dual processor price territory.

    If I were in your position and I wanted to upgrade I would change the speakers/subwoofer first as this is likely to bring about the best improvement in sound. I havent heard the MS speakers so dont have an opinion on them but I definately dislike the mission dipoles - to me they sound flat and thin but I know lots of people here like them.
     
  3. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    P. Adams

    Were it my money i would change the speakers also and then the power-amp followed by the Tag hardware upgrades.
    I would consider sticking at least 1500.00+ into the front three, with careful shopping you will pick up some good deals with this spending power.
    Your power amp you could move up the ladder for not too much money, i.e sell your Rotel 500.00 ish, a Parasound 2205 can be had for about 1300.00 which is significantly better than the 1075.
     
  4. Peter

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    I upgraded to 192 / Dual Processor and can't say I heard a difference, though some say it's considerable. Not to me it wasn't. The DP does get you to TMREQ, and depending on your setup it may or may not be useful. It has the potential to make a much bigger difference than higher-res DACs.

    I'd agree with the general consensus - put upgrade money into the speakers: modern solid state electronics are very good so you'd have to spend a great deal to get marginal benefit. You'd only need to upgrade the amp if it struggles to drive whatever new speakers you choose.
     
  5. alexs2

    alexs2
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    As everyone else has said,I'd definitely put the money into upgrading the speakers...this is where the single largest improvement would come from.
     
  6. P Adams

    P Adams
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    Hi everyone,

    Thanks very much for the advice and apologies for not replying sooner.

    I think that upgrading my speakers is a very solid idea. As I said I wasn't expecting to link an AV32R to my existing speakers and I would like to push it to the limit before possibly upgrading to 192 DACs and dual processors etc.

    I do like my Mordaunt Short floorstanders and centre so do you think something in the B&W or KEF range would be appropriate as a replacement for these three and bring out the best in the TAG and Toshiba SD900e?

    PA
     
  7. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Personally,I find that the B&W Nautilus range work very well with my system,but the only way to be sure about this is to try as many good speakers in that sort of price range as possible....consider also ATC,Wilson Benesch and possibly Spendor and Proac
     
  8. P Adams

    P Adams
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    Thanks Alexs2

    I'll start buttering my wife up, so to speak, with a view to auditioning some of the makes you suggested.

    She actually convinced me to go for the TAG over the Denon/Pioneer electronics so you never know!

    PA
     
  9. parky43007

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    I would also take a look (or listen!) at the new Linn Akurate speakers alongside B&W, Wilson Benesch etc....
    They really do sound fantastic.
     
  10. hornydragon

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    Okay a really off the wall suggestion (unpopular with forum members) but here goes, Why not try your Tag Processor with B&O Active loud speakers, I am thinking BeoLab 1 fronts and 6000 rears (centre pose's a challenge!) but why not give it a go! advantage of B&0 Actives is no power amps needed and Lab 1 have ice power digital amps in them!!!! (a hefty upgrade though £5k+)
     
  11. dml

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    NO! NO! NO!

    The obvious speaker upgrade for the TAG is a Bose Acoustimass system! There your problem is solved. :D
     
  12. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Interesting that you mention the B&Os'....their latest offering,the Beolab 5 Actives have been getting some very good press(but should do at around £10k).
    If you were considering a move to actives with a good pedigree,Meridian would be the obvious choice,with some very good secondhand prices around.

    dml....your "contribution" is somewhat reminiscent of nathan_silly's level of help.
     
  13. dml

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    My previous "contribution" was posted in a spirit of friendly humor, in a moment of madness on an otherwise bad day. Appologies to any forum members who might have been offended.:rolleyes:

    Seriously, I would agree with other members, your current electronics are such that you are probably approaching the law of diminishing returns. You could spend a lot of money and get only a marginal improvement in sound. You may not feel it worthwhile.

    Changing your speakers will make a far more dramatic difference to your systems sound. As always speakers are a very personal and subjective choice. The suggestions above are a good place to start. If the idea of powered speakers interests you then consider MK 150s at least for the front three.

    If the watchword in the property market is "Location, Location, Location" then in AV it should be "Audition, Audition, Audition". Preferably in your own room with your own software. I would go for the best speakers I could afford with the intention of an amp upgrade in the future.

    Perhaps the new Tag 7 channel power amp should be given a listen?

    Good luck in your research and give us a progress report.
     
  14. PhilCTTE

    PhilCTTE
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    Regarding the beolabs ... They are not to everyones taste !! be warned !. To me they dont sound natural. I've listened to the new Beolab 5's at 10K and they go really loud with a considerable amount of bass and do not get distorted at all ! The trebles are clean and the bass deep, but I'm not sure about the the imaging and the all important midrange. It seems to mess things up somewhat. If you cant be bothered in finding the right amps and have difficulty in placement then hey thay might be for you, but if its hi performance reference reproduction you want then try some others. They look v.bizzare "its stereo Jim, but not as we know it". Take a look and listen at the new B&W 7 series they are getting rave reviews. Also I dont think the beolabs have a dedicated center.
     

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