Upgrading to separates---what's most cost effective?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Brandon WB, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. Brandon WB

    Brandon WB Extra

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    Hi everyone,
    I am new to this forum and could use some advice from all of those more experienced in the "audiophile world" than me. The situation. Looking to move up to seperates over my current A/V receiver & etc. Wondering where my money is best spent & on what brands. The first thing I have been looking at is the B&K st125.3 amp (125w x 3) for the front L/R & center channel. Should I consider a 200w/channel instead or not worth it? My ultimate goal, or #1 priority is to improve the sound of my 2ch music then HT. After the amp, what would be the next best move? Go with a pre/pro, upgrade to another amp for the sorrounds, get a better cd player, or new speakers?

    Current system
    Speakers main L/R - Boston Acoustic vr-950
    Center - Boston crc
    Sorrounds - Boston cr-75
    Sub - klipsch ksw-12
    Receiver - yamaha rx-v1300
    DVD/CD player - toshiba sd-4800

    Any recommendations or suggestions would be great.
    Thanks
     
  2. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    There any many amps out there:
    Sherbourn
    Parasound
    Rotel
     
  3. Ernest Yee

    Ernest Yee Supporting Actor

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    Personally, I would upgrade the speakers, source, then get the amp.

    BTW, what cd player are you using for this setup?
     
  4. WayneO

    WayneO Supporting Actor

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    At 110W, I think you have enough power for the surrounds, so I'd just leave them alone until you decide to move to a pre/proc which would be the next step. But in doing that you'll then need an amp for the rears so that move becomes costly. I use a separate Acurus 150W amp for my mains along with my 7x110wpc Onkyo for the rest. That amp really didn't bring any noticeable sound changes except for less strain at loud volumes. You going to 125w from 110w will definately ease the Yamaha amp but whether you get a sound improvement will be hard to say since the Yamaha is still doing the processing. I tried a Rotel 120w amp before the Acurus, it didn't seem to help at all, but a 140w Parasound helped at louder volumes and spurred my interest in getting a more powerful amp for my mains. I would look at a 150-200wpc amp just for the mains, then get a something like a 3x125w amp for the center and surrounds if you move to separates. Look at Adcom, Parasound, Rotel, Acurus, Outlaw, B&K for something affordable.
     
  5. Brandon WB

    Brandon WB Extra

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    My cd player is an inexpensive toshiba sd-4800 dvd/audio player. Upgrade the Boston acoustics, hey? I have been quite pleased with their sound. Thought maybe a cleaner & more powerful amp would bring them alive.
     
  6. Steve Crowley

    Steve Crowley Stunt Coordinator

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    In order to get a 3dB sound increase you will have to find out the efficiency of your speakers and determine if going 25 watts more power is going to make a difference. If your speakers have an efficiency rating of 90dB/1 watt/1 meter then you will not have much of a difference. You would have to go around 125 watts more to increase the level 3 dB more.
    That means you would go from 110 watts to 235 watts for this increase.

    I would go with a more efficient speaker such as Klipsch,Altec,JBL or as such for right now and later upgrade
    the amps. Cheer.
     
  7. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    Brandon,

    Try a nice 150/200 watt 2 channel amp and see if you notice any improvement. If not keep the amp and then upgrade to better speakers or sell the amp and buy speakers to see if that helps in any way.

    I went from just my Pioneer 811 to Pioneer 811/with parasound HCA855a and I actually have more clarity/depth and I gained like 7db(very odd #) on my setup........
     
  8. Robert_Gaither

    Robert_Gaither Screenwriter

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    Imho I think if you can borrow an amp first from a friend or family to try it out to see if it makes a difference. I had a Denon 2400 that claimed 70 wpc that was easily out performed by an Adcom 535 that was rated at 60 wpc. Though some systems will have an improvement with various amps, it should always be tried at home with the intended gear to find out for sure.
     

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