3-channel amps

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Troy TN, Mar 23, 2002.

  1. Troy TN

    Troy TN Stunt Coordinator

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    I read so many glowing reviews of the Parasound 3 channel amps like the 2003a why doesn't Parasound make a 3 channel amp anymore? How does this amp compare to other 3-channel amps like the Acurus 200x3 and the adcom? Has anyone demoed these to see if there is a big sound difference between them?

    I have Klipsch RF-7's for speakers.

    Any comments of quality/sound differences would be appreciated. I may use a Denon receiver as a pre-amp.

    Troy
     
  2. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    I am curious about newer 3 ch amps as well. I would like to get into a decent amp to add to my receiver if the price allows, since I may be switching to 4 ohm speakers L/C/R and I want to releave some of the load on the receiver. I will be curious to see what the responses are.
     
  3. Robert George

    Robert George Screenwriter

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    3-channel amp have fallen out of fashion as the market has changed. Prior to the rising popularity of home theater, dedicated power amps were pretty much exclusively the venue of stereo audio systems, hence virtually all amps at that time came in two basic flavors, 2-channel stereo or mono blocks. In the early days of home theater, there was a need for an additional three channels of amplification since many people already had stereo amps. It could be said that the first 3-channel designs were created as stopgaps for a burgeoning home theater market.
    3-channel designs hung on until relatively recently due to the fact that early 5-channel amps often lacked the power supply and current capacity of separate 2 and 3 channel amps. Indeed, some manufacturers even designed 5-channel amps with separate power supplies, one for the two channels driving the L/R mains and one for the other three channels driving the center and surrounds.
    Now that very cabable 5, 6, and even 7 channel designs are commonplace, the need for 3-channel amps has diminished, current popularity of adding external amps to receivers not withstanding.
    Troy:
    I can't offer you any personal comparison between Parasound and Acurus. I happen to have just purchased an Acurus A200X3 on closeout and I consider it the best accessory for a $4000 receiver one can buy [​IMG]. I have some limited past experience with Parasound as well, and I can say these are also excellent amps as well as an excellent value. If you want an HCA-2003, I suggest checking around audiogon.com. These come up for sale on the used market fairly regularly. Beyond the used market, it may be necessay to go for a decent 5-channel such as the Outlaw 755.
     
  4. joe logston

    joe logston Stunt Coordinator

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    hi robert you thank that there are a few aragon 3 achannel amps around that matches the aragon 4004 mark 2 i anded the aragon to my yamaha rx-v1, and im thanking that i should find a 3 channel for the front end and put the aragon to 4004 to the surounds is it a good idea you think.

    thanks
     
  5. Johann

    Johann Auditioning

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  6. Robert George

    Robert George Screenwriter

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    What do I think? I think that driving surround speakers in a HT system with an Aragon amp is kinda like feeding caviar to your cat [​IMG]. But I understand you have that 2-channel just sitting there with the desire to do something about the front three channel. As far as putting a 3-channel Aragon on the fronts, hell yes. I only bought an Acurus myself because I can't afford an Aragon. If you can stil find one, the Aragon 8008x3 would do quite nicely. Then you can "waste" the 4004mkII on the surrounds [​IMG].
     
  7. Henry W

    Henry W Stunt Coordinator

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    Try the Bryston 6B ST. It is an excellant 3 channel amp. I use one for the center and main speakers. I have a pair of Bryston 4B ST amps for the surround and back channels. These are all rated at 300+ watts and the system works like a charm.

    I am not so sure 3 channel amps are a thing of the past. Building a 5 or 7 channel is not easy. Weight and size is a big factor as well as trying to locate all the various parts inside one unit without creating difficulties. The 6B ST alone weighs 80 lbs., not to mention a size of 19.5" x 20.5" x 17". I couldn't find what I was looking for in a 5 or 7 channel amp so I bought a 3 channel and a pair of 2 channel amps.

    Best regards-Henry
     
  8. Eric A

    Eric A Second Unit

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    I do not know what your budget is but you can get a Soundstream M-3 THX on Ebay right now for $350 using "Buy It Now". This amp is new in the box and a real find. Soundstream does not do home audio anymore but is still fantastic. I have owned an M-3 and they are wonderful. It is a 3 channel monoblock design such as the Marantz. It is 125 wpc at 8 ohms and goes to 230wpc at 4 ohms. This is a very warm sounding cleam amp with 3 separate torroidial transformers and 3 separate power cords. This amp sold for $1350 when new. I have looked long and hard at it but I already own 4 Soundstream DA-1s and do not really need it.
     
  9. Troy TN

    Troy TN Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the responses. I was wondering for those that currently have added an amp to an existing Receiver. It seems everyone states it has improved the main channels sound. Are all of you running your Main speakers as Large or small in the surround sound receiver you use as a preamp? It seems if one ran them Large you would her more benefits of an external amp vs a small speaker setting which has the crossover point in it. Basically most people that add an external amp probably have decent high end speakers to b powered by an external amp.

    It seems most people run speakers at the small setting even though their current main speakers are quite capable for Large or full range setting. Does anyone run there main speakers at small and STILL hear a dramatic improvement in sound by adding an external amp?

    I will have to watch out for those 3 channel amp deals out there.
     
  10. Kevin T

    Kevin T Screenwriter

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    joe:

    if i'm not mistaken, the 4004 was a dual mono design and you would probably benefit more from using it for your front channels and the 8008x3 for your center and rears. don't get me wrong, i have the 8008x3 (purchased from ubid) powering my fronts and center right now but that's only because i'm holding off for a few months until i can round everything out with an 8008bb then my 8008x3b will be seeing center / surround duty.

    kevin t
     
  11. joe logston

    joe logston Stunt Coordinator

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    yes its a dual mono amp it haves 200 w into 8 ohms & 400w into 4 ohms thus 4004 400 into 4 i have my yamaha rx-v1 surounds running off a dennon poa-2400 amp so the only channels the yamaha is running is the front center, rear center, and the 2 effects speakers it cleaned up the yamaha a lot it dont have no receiver sound at all now the sound is deep deeep deep and wide.
     
  12. joe logston

    joe logston Stunt Coordinator

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    wend i added the dennon poa-2400 amp to the surounds channels i could not beleive the differance it ceaned them up and they got louder, and the front center channel is so clean now that you can hear every thing going all the way back in the sound stage its unbelivable, its hi-fi heavin, i want more. i want the 3 channel aragon.
     
  13. JerryW

    JerryW Supporting Actor

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    Hi Troy, how've you been?

    I have an Acurus A200X5 and it's an awesome amp (I use it to drive my CC and surrounds). It has power for miles and a sweet neutral sound. I'm sure their A200x3 would be no exception. Another option is Aragon. I have a 4004 MKII stereo amp that I use to drive my mains and it's truly an incredible product, best of it's kind that I've ever listened to, for the price.
     
  14. Troy TN

    Troy TN Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Jerry...I was wondering do the Acurus amps have a 12v trigger? I guess without a 12v trigger one would have to manully turn it on and off rather than it being automatic through a preamp with the 12v trigger on it?
     
  15. Craig Ball

    Craig Ball Second Unit

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    Troy, the Acurus amps do not have a trigger, but what I did was pick up a Panamax 5300 and plugged both amps into it, now i have the panamax set to a 10 second delay when they turn off, no more thump works great!! The Panamax turns everything on.

    Craig
     
  16. Dalton

    Dalton Screenwriter

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    Has anyone hear heard the B&K 3140? It's 140wx3. I have been looking at 5 channel amps lately but only need 3 and have seen this B&K for $599 brand new. Anyone own it or have heard it? Thanks for any opinions.
     
  17. Troy TN

    Troy TN Stunt Coordinator

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    Can someone list all curren or upcoming 3 channel amps.
    It seems all manufacturors are not making them anymore and are going to 5 and 7 channel amps. One would think with the growth in DD EX and DTS Es that these amp companies would see a demand for 3-channel amps for add ons in existing systems.
    I noticed the entre new line of Aragon amps which are to be released this month at www.klipsch.com are all THX Ultra 2 certified and look pretty decent. Again no 3-channel amps.
    Who currenty sells NEW 3-channels amps.
    Troy
     

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