Any suggestions for a high current amp?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by George_W_K, Oct 11, 2003.

  1. George_W_K

    George_W_K Screenwriter

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    Hello,


    A few months back I purchased Martin Logan Aeon's for my main fronts. I am currently powering them with a 80W/ch Yamaha receiver. I'd like to upgrade to a good high current amplifier to power these speakers so I can take the strain off of the Yamaha. I am planning on upgrading the center channel and rear surrounds to Martin Logan speakers as well and I know the Yamaha won't handle all of that. Any suggestions on which amps to look at? Are there particular things I should look for in an amp?

    This will be my first step into getting into separates and I'd like to start off right. Another question I have, should I get a 5.1, or 7.1 channel amp? Or should I just get a 2-channel amp for now and add more amps when I am able to upgrade the rest of the speakers?

    Thanks for the help and pointing me in the right direction. Oh, and I am not sure on a price range yet as I am just starting to look at my options. However, I'd like to stay realistic for my income level so if the price is more than four figures that is a little too high.[​IMG]


    Thanks again,
    George
     
  2. Jerry Thomas

    Jerry Thomas Stunt Coordinator

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    That's funny b/c my buddy Dave is using a Yamaha RX-740 with his Aeon fronts, and Cinema center, but using a B&K ref 2220 for the Aeon's, and is overly concerned that the 740 isn't enough power for the center. I just posted a thread in this forum on it.

    Anyway personally would go with B&K. Whether it is the ST or Reference line, they are both great. I believe the ST125.2 2ch amp retails for $800 (not sure) and is 125watts per channel, and is more than capable of driving your Aeon fronts.
     
  3. Jason.Soko

    Jason.Soko Stunt Coordinator

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    SimAudio's Moon line has some seriously high end audio shit.
     
  4. Alan Pummill

    Alan Pummill Screenwriter

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    Howdy George,

    I bought a used Rotel RB-990BX amp (2 x 200wpc) off of Audiogon for $375. The dude lived in Columbus, so we met half way to save shipping hassles. I have a Carver AV-705x amp (5 x 125wpc) to run my center and 4 surrounds. I bought it used off of e-bay for $550 about a year ago.

    If you listen to stereo CD's a lot like I do, you will appreciate that extra power up front. I could tell a big improvement from the Rotel over the Carver in stereo mode. HT sounds great with this amp combo and my Outlaw 950 pre/pro.

    If you like stereo, I say go for the gusto up front along with a 5-channel center/surround amp. You will probably save some bucks. Speaking of BUCKS, go OSU over Wisconsin!!
     
  5. Carl Gaff

    Carl Gaff Second Unit

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    I agree with Jerry. All my home theater speakers are Martin Logan and I use B&K amps to run them. They are a very good match as the B&K amps have somewhat of a "warm" sound which works well with the Martin Logans. Whatever amp(s) you get make sure they will work well with a 4 ohm load. I guarenteee you are going to be amazed at the difference in sound when you put some power behind those M&Ks. I'm running B%K amps that are 375 watts @ 4ohms and they sound excellent.
     
  6. MikeTz

    MikeTz Stunt Coordinator

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    George:

    Multi-Channel amps from the following companies will provide more power at prices within the atmosphere:

    Anthem
    Outlaw
    Rotel
    Parasound
    B&K

    There are more good choices others will recommend that compete with those above but all the companies I mentioned have products that have been extensively reviewed. You can also get used amps from some excellent manufacturers.

    MT
     
  7. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

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    Take a look at the 5 channel Sherbourn. I demoed the 5/1500A in my system against the Rotel 1095 and Parasound 2205 and bought the Sherbourn.
     
  8. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    B&K amps make a good mate to Martin Logans. Nice and smooth neutral sounding combination. Parasound, Rotel or Classe would also make a good combination.
     
  9. George_W_K

    George_W_K Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the suggestions so far guys.[​IMG]

    I have another question, my speakers are rated up to 200W (I think, that's by memory, too lazy to walk downstairs:b .), some of the amps by the companies suggested were rated higher. Would this be a problem listening at normal volumes, or would I have to play at deafening levels before those wattage levels did any damage? For example, I found a Parasound amp rated at 500W @4 Ohms. A B & K rated 375 @ 4 Ohms.

    Thanks again!
    George
     
  10. NicholasL

    NicholasL Second Unit

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    Not sure if you were referring to the Parasound Classic line, or their HALO line, but whatever the case your speakers are probably not 4ohms, so the 500 watt rating is not what you should go by. I don't know the exact conversion, but that's around 200 watts at 8ohms. Which perfectl matches your speakers.
     
  11. George_W_K

    George_W_K Screenwriter

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    My speakers are rated @ 4 Ohms according to ML's website and the paperwork that came with them.
     
  12. Carl Gaff

    Carl Gaff Second Unit

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    George as I mentioned in my previous post, I am running B&K amp that rae rated at 375 watts at 4 ohms through my Martin Logans with zero problems.
     
  13. Jerry Thomas

    Jerry Thomas Stunt Coordinator

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    I wouldn't worry about the wattage George. The ML's like good clean power, and that is exactly what I get from my B&K's. I used a pair of Scenario's for awhile (before I upgraded) with a B&K reference 2220, and I have never heard Scenarios sound so good. But whether you go with the ST or Reference line it'll make a big difference over the Yamaha. I chose B&K b/c I felt it was the perfect match for my ML's over Parasound, Adcom, Rotel, & ATI. Other good matches are Mcintosh, and Krell, but for the price I'd go with B&K and by no means are you settling for a lesser amp. The B&K will bring your Aeon's to life.
     
  14. George_W_K

    George_W_K Screenwriter

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    Sorry about that Carl, I read your post about B & K, but didn't pay attention to the numbers. Hope I didn't offend.

    Right now I am going to concentrate on the B & K, I appreciate everyone's suggestions.

    George
     
  15. Carl Gaff

    Carl Gaff Second Unit

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    Not a problem Geaorge. I just sent you an email with some additional info I thought you might use
     
  16. Jerry Thomas

    Jerry Thomas Stunt Coordinator

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    BTW George, what Yamaha Receiver are you using?
     
  17. RichardHOS

    RichardHOS Second Unit

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    George,

    Using an amplifier rated at significantly higher power than your speakers are rated to handle is generally not a problem provided you don't often crank the volume to maximum. Many (most?) speakers can handle quite a bit more power than their rating provided (1) it is for a relatively short period of time and (2) it isn't at extremely low frequencies.

    Given those two conditions above, it is usually better to have an amp "oversized" than one "undersized." An amplifier struggling to put out the power you request might go into clipping at a volume you actually listen to. The distortion produced from clipping can be very damaging to speakers of all types and sizes. However, a large amp will generally produce clean output at any volume you could stand, and your speakers will be safer, even if fed more than their rated power for short periods.

    Case in point: my speaker are rated for 250 watts power handling. At the moment, I'm feeding them over 700 watts each, listen at rather loud volumes on occasion, and haven't experienced any (nor expect any) problems.
     
  18. George_W_K

    George_W_K Screenwriter

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    Jerry,

    I am using the Yamaha AVR-1105 AKA 795a.

    Richard,

    Thanks for the explanation, that certainly eases my nerves.

    You all have been very helpful so far and I appreciate it. Now I have come up with another question. What size speaker wire should I use with a high powered amp? You'd laugh if you saw the set-up I am using now. :b

    George
     
  19. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

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  20. RichardHOS

    RichardHOS Second Unit

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    Yep, 12AWG (something like that found at Home Depot or the Soundking wire found at www.partsexpress.com) should be fine for pretty much any length run you are likely to have.
     

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