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Yamaha as300 vs as500?

mafia

Standard Member
I am undecided weather to get an Yamaha AS-500 or a AS-300 for my B&W 602 S2.

Would the price difference justify getting the AS500 over the AS300?

The Amp and speakers will be used in a small ish room, and later moved into a living room
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
Both have plenty of power, though the AS500 has more. So, really it somewhat gets down to budget - £210 vs £296. If you've got the money spend it. If you are trying to keep the budget to a minimum, you won't be disappointed by the AS300.

In the end, it is down to money and desire.

Steve/bluewizard
 

mafia

Standard Member
Thanks BlueWizard, i just wonder if there is much difference in sound quality

am I in right in thinking that I would only notice any differences if I crank the volume up? at low volumes they would sound pretty much the same?
 

Member 513627

Established Member
BlueWizard's right tbf

If you can afford it and want more power then go for the 500, if not then go for 300...would you like the extra punch?

The 300 is perfectly fine if you'd rather save the £80.

Sound quality should pretty much be the same at lower levels imo, with the 500 edging it (obviously).

:)
 

mafia

Standard Member
I've just had a second thought, I really want the as500 now as I have just tested them against an A300.

Would anyone know which one would be better out of the AS500 orthe Arcam A85?

the A85 goes for around 300 on ebay and the Yamaha is around £300 new!
 
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Ben Jammin

Established Member
Well... it depends whether you like the Arcam sound.

It's not a simple case of "better"
 

sebbyp

Established Member
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mafia

Standard Member
The Arcam sound is a lot more smoother and less upfront then the Yamaha - that is down to personal preference.

Also there is some really good second hand Arcam Power amps to match the A85 that come up on ebay now and then so you do have room to upgrade for more power in the future.

Edit - That is the P85 by the way. Arcam P85 Diva Power Amplifier | eBay UK

Thanks for your input Sebbyp

I'm pretty new to all this, what would a power amp be used for and is it really necessary for some shelf speakers? I have already decided to go for the A85

thanks
 

sebbyp

Established Member
No Problem Mafia, I am new to the forums and I would love to to share some knowledge.

So the Arcam A85 is an integrated amplifier that includes a Pre amp (Controls the volume and so on) and a Power amp (actual power to drive the speakers).

By adding a power amp of course your adding additional power to your speakers therefore gaining more control over them. I have a pair of B&W 685's and there efficiency is relatively low so the more power behind them the better they will perform.

Also when you add a power amp to an integrated amp you have the ability to Bi-Amp, similar to when you Bi-Wire. One amp will control the high's and the other will control the low frequencies. This effectively means that the integrated amp no longer has to do the work in splitting the signal and you have two seperate boxes doing it.

So by driving the Bass and Treble separately you will hear a big difference in terms of sound stage and be able to get much tighter bass and Highs as there is more control over the frequency range.

Hope this helps.

Seb
 

patton

Established Member
I've just had a second thought, I really want the as500 now as I have just tested them against an A300.

Would anyone know which one would be better out of the AS500 orthe Arcam A85?

the A85 goes for around 300 on ebay and the Yamaha is around £300 new!

having owned the Arcam and currently own the Yamaha AS500 i can say the Yamaha is better sounding to my ears, the Arcam was way to warm sounding for me...
 

mafia

Standard Member
No Problem Mafia, I am new to the forums and I would love to to share some knowledge.

So the Arcam A85 is an integrated amplifier that includes a Pre amp (Controls the volume and so on) and a Power amp (actual power to drive the speakers).

By adding a power amp of course your adding additional power to your speakers therefore gaining more control over them. I have a pair of B&W 685's and there efficiency is relatively low so the more power behind them the better they will perform.

Also when you add a power amp to an integrated amp you have the ability to Bi-Amp, similar to when you Bi-Wire. One amp will control the high's and the other will control the low frequencies. This effectively means that the integrated amp no longer has to do the work in splitting the signal and you have two seperate boxes doing it.

So by driving the Bass and Treble separately you will hear a big difference in terms of sound stage and be able to get much tighter bass and Highs as there is more control over the frequency range.

Hope this helps.

Seb

Thanks Seb, sounds like the Power amp might be worth while but considering it is nearly the same price as an amp it may have to wait as i am on a bit of a budget!


having owned the Arcam and currently own the Yamaha AS500 i can say the Yamaha is better sounding to my ears, the Arcam was way to warm sounding for me...

Has anyone else found the same? its hard for me to test the Arcam at a showroom as its discontinued
 

sebbyp

Established Member
Sorry buddy - been a way for a while.

Best bet is to go to a hifi shop and listen to an arcam A18 to get an idea of the (laid back Arcam) sound.

Seb
 

blacklion

Established Member
About £80 difference now.

Would the price difference justify getting the AS500 over the AS300?

Its going into a mid-sized room and will replace a Pioneer A209R.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
There is no denying the superior quality (general quality) of the Arcam brand. But the lowest price I found on an Arcam A85 was £350 on Ebay. The correct current prices for the Yamaha are AS300 = £199, and the AS500 = £279.

They Yamaha are new with full warranty and dealer support, but they are not Arcam.

The Arcam very likely is used, and while it might be an exceptional bargain even at the higher price, you have to ask how much you trust the sell to represent the product accurately and to ship it properly?

Both the Yamaha AS500 and the Arcam A85 are rated at 85w/ch.

The Arcam has a lot of features, but most Arcam amps don't have tone controls, I'm not sure about this one. If that matters to you, then take it into consideration.

I would say, that the Arcam is probably on the low end of premium amps, though the DIVA A85 is not the highest in the Arcam line. The Yamaha are probably, just a little above mid-pack in consumer electronics. So, certainly Arcam is better quality. But, at the same time, Yamaha is not a bad amp, and is exceptional value.

You have to weigh New vs Used, and weigh features, then decide where your priorities are.

I found a Stereophile Magazine review on the Arcam DIVA A85, and the original selling price was US$1499, which would be about £990. Though I couldn't find the actual new selling price in the UK.

Arcam DiVA A85 integrated amplifier | Stereophile.com

So, certainly Arcam has the superior quality, but I suspect it will be difficult to find one for under £300. The A85 was new on the market around 2001 from the research I've done. So, more than 10 years old. That is something to consider.

Just a few thoughts.

Steve/bluewizard
 

PIEP

Established Member
"mafia" is not a joke...
 

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