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  1. #1
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    HiNew to the forum. considering a change of amp to match my speakers.Current set upRega Jupiter cdRega Cursa preRega Maia power amps - bi amped - driving the superbProAc Response 1sc speakersWhat I'm after is a more fluid/ liquid / air and space around the music.Any suggestions? worried about valves, as I know little. My instinct takes me to Sugden.

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    How much have you got to spend? Why worried about valves? judging by the type of sound you are after, they would seem ideal. The offerings from Sugden maybe underpowered for your proacs, how easy are they to drive? sensitivity?

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    Budget for about £1500, maybe £2000.I like the fit and forget aspect of transistor amp. prefer to go to a big integrated again.*ProAc's like a bit of muscle.

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    I wouldnot agree about the proacs needing more muscle . I have driven Proac D15s with a Sugden a21a in a largish heavily damped room and lack of power was never a concern. in fact barely had to turn the volume knob more than 11-O-Clock !

    I thought they sounded very well together..Only reason I did not go for it was that I felt another speaker which I was evaluating sounded more like what i wnated.
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    Thanks arjn, but using my current system the volume control is usually in the 12 o clock position.*For some cd's I'll turn it up to 1 o clock.*This might sound excessive, but its not that loud at those settings.Still have a niggle to listen to a Sugden though.

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    Gufmeister Leonard Smalls's Avatar
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    Can highly recommend the Sugden Masterclass integrated - 35 proper watts...

    Whether you can find one for £1500 is another matter.

    Alternatively, the Lavardin IS is pretty good for liquid-ness, though I personally found it didn't have enough power for my speakers (Ditton 66/2), but the Sugden did.

    However, I'm not a great fan of the Response series - not enough of anything for me.. So I'd lose them as well!

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    Thanks LeonardBut I'm sold on the ProAc's, had various ProAc speakers for the last ten years.They're just right for me, but I appreciate that they won't suit everyone.

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    ok, since we all like to recommend our own kit, try the Audio Analogue Maestro. 150W to drive the proacs, very smooth and airy sound, could be one to try and listen to.

    Problem is, its £3000 new, but if you hunt around, you might find an exdem or used model for at least half the asking price.

    Also, something like scm's Manley Stingray is right in your budget, and is apparently pretty stunning.

    Could also contact Mr Coherent (member here) and ask about a Bel Canto Power amp and Eastern Electric Minimax pre!

  9. #9
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    Bow Wazooo XL.

    You may have read my review of it. It really is stunning. It has a beautiful midrange.

    Only problem is they are hard to find 2nd hand.



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    What is the power rating of the Lavardin, Leonard? Have you owned one?
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    Gufmeister Leonard Smalls's Avatar
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    The Lavardin IS (and IS ref) is 35w/ch. It has a fantastic mid-range and works very well with efficient speakers...

    The IT has 48w, and is a much betteramp - though it should be with an rrp of £2795! (the IS is £1500).

    I heard them both with my Dittons - the IT had a much easier time and matched the Sugden masterclass integrated for easy-listening with massive detail...

    In the end I didn't buy either - I bought a Bow Warlock SE pre and Bryston 14bsst power. With my speakers there's no substitute for cubes!

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    I didn't realise they were so modestly powered. Interesting.
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    Thanks for the replies, been scouring the net - any thoughts on using a hybrid amp?Saw some interesting reviews on Croft, and also the full blown valve Stingray amp.

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    Cloffo I, King of Scots Cloth-Ears's Avatar
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    Purplepleaser here on the board drives Response 1's even with a Sugden Bijou series amp.

    I immediately thought Sugden myself when I started reading the initial post, then I saw thename at the end of the sentence ! Indeed, Sugden themsleves say Proac is good in general. On the other hand, a small speaker is bound to be less sensitive.

    There is an A21 for sale on HiFI Choice Forum, possible going to Ebay he says.

    If it doesn't work out you can easily sell on an A21....... and the speakers for that matter.
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    nicolap99 wrote:
    Thanks for the replies, been scouring the net - any thoughts on using a hybrid amp?Saw some interesting reviews on Croft, and also the full blown valve Stingray amp.
    Not heard any Croft amps (Davewhityetagain is a big fan of Croft) so cannot comment, but own the Manley Stingray myself. It's main advantage over other similar priced valve amps is bass, very tight controlled deep bass, almost solid state like with all the other benefits of valve.....clean top end, smooth detailed mid range.Almost dual mono design, 2 input selectors and left rca's on left hand side of amp and vice versa giving superb imagery. I am chuffed to bits with mine.
    As far as Hybrids are concerned I have home demo'd the Pathos Classic one and didn't get on with it at all, bass was superb along with a clean top end but mid range sounded very recessed, voices sounded weak compared to the rest of the music.

  16. #16
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    Hi nicolap99, Just thought that I would mention that I use the Sugden Musicmaster to drive the exellent Proac 1sc . This little amp has only 15watts at 8ohms. I am in a modern house so volume is a problem. I chose to go with the Musicmaster over the Sugden Ampmaster due to several reason. It sound so much more open,sweeter,clearer,more effortless,the sound stageseems huge in comparison.The Musicmaster will not go as loud as the Ampmaster which has twice the power but it's sounds so much better through out the volume range and has more control. Yes it is twice the price but you get more than twice the sound. It may be worth a listen .I am going to get another to bi-amp my Proac's soon.I know that I will have to g-clamp my socks on as my single Musicmaster blows them off already.Hope this may help and good look finding a amp to get the best out of the best stand mounters in the world



    lee





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    Besides the many fine suggestions, I'd try to take a listen to Exposure's range - even their cheapest, starting at around £500 new,have a lovely liquid musicality rare in class AB solid-staters.

    churz, eofs

  18. #18
    Cloffo I, King of Scots Cloth-Ears's Avatar
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    Careful Sodbury, based on my own experience, I wouldn't say they are "liquid" in the way Sugdens are. Maybe they still need more burning in, but my top amps seem to need speakers that willopen them out, particularly when using the Exposure CD player as well, compared to my Ringdac Arcam. Having said that, I was used to valve off and on.
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    Cloth-Ears wrote:
    Careful Sodbury, based on my own experience, I wouldn't say they are "liquid" in the way Sugdens are. Maybe they still need more burning in, but my top amps seem to need speakers that willopen them out, particularly when using the Exposure CD player as well, compared to my Ringdac Arcam. Having said that, I was used to valve off and on.
    I should have said "IME & IMO", then. My experience is coloured by mainly using solid-state gear... For sure they're no valvers (can't comment on the Sugdens), but they'resimpler to live with long term IME/IMO...!

    churz, eofs

  20. #20
    Cloffo I, King of Scots Cloth-Ears's Avatar
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    Oh not at all EofS, you don't have to prefix everything with that, as when you sayyour bit you are puting over your opinion. Reviews of Exposure eqiupment have certainly echoed what you have said. Indeed it formed part of the decision to go full on Exposure myself.

    I'm presently in touch with Exposure about it, as there may be something amiss with my equipment. Its not as open as I expected. I had some old stuff, and the new stuff was said to be more open, yet there is a certain thickness in I suppose you could call the lower mid/upper bass that seems to muddy up the sound for one as cloth eared as I. This is particularly true when using the CD22 rather than the light and detailed Arcam with the Ringdac. I have been told to burn them in for a lot more hours than I have so maybe time will tell. Odd though.

    This is the basis of my need for speakers to open up the sound. The cheap AE floorstanders do not sit well on things like acoustic folk, but actually did great with Led Zeppelin live. On balance though I need the transparency so if I'm going to stick with Exposure rather than valveI'm going to need open sounding speakers. Maybe Umberto's Skibbo's are the answer. Then again, if the sound is going to change or there is a fault with them, maybe the Skibbo's are not the answer.

    Argh ! I wish I could magically "know" .
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