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  1. #1
    Super Wammer Sheva's Avatar
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    Post imported post

    I’ve seen this referred to a few times as a classic, and identified as a seminal moment in amp design/value, but I’ve never heard one. What sort of characteristic sound did it have? I always thought of Pioneer of having a quite lush house sound, but I get the impression that the A400 was a lot leaner and punchier. Just curious…

  2. #2
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    harsh shouty and nasty ,i had one for a few years . buy a rotel instead far more relaxed.

  3. #3
    Wammer Papa Lazarou's Avatar
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    rudolph hucker wrote:
    [quote]harsh and nasty i had one for a few years . buy a rotel instead far more relaxed.[/quote}
    Not entirely, its a clean and quite thin sound. Requires a smooth, warm (often more expensive) source to sound its best imo. It was my first proper amp. Partnered with the right kit its a really good amp, the internal phono stage is poor though.
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  4. #4
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    spot on papa with a laid back front end and smooth speakers it sounds ok.
    certainly not a super amp as quoted in the hifi press many years ago though.

  5. #5
    Super Wammer JANDL100's Avatar
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    Post imported post

    I owned one for about3 hours.

    At first listen it is amazingly like a real audiophile amp - then you realise that it's got no "life" at all. Just an empty shell.

    Sad innit?
    Life's too short for boring hifi!

  6. #6
    Wammer syep2001's Avatar
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    I loved mine, a mate of mine still uses it, don't use it with bright sounding source or speakers else its paracetamol time
    I spent all my money on booze, drugs, and women, the rest I squandered

  7. #7
    Hi-fi/Pie-Fi Strider's Avatar
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    I use one in my studio sometimes as a reference amp. It can sound fatiguing with certain CDP/speakers but get it right and it is very revealing.
    SOME PEOPLE ARE LIKE SLINKIES. THEY'RE NOT REALLY GOOD FOR ANYTHING BUT THEY BRING A SMILE TO YOUR FACE WHEN YOU PUSH THEM DOWN THE STAIRS...

  8. #8
    Super Wammer musicbox's Avatar
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    I had one in the early 90s.... excruciatingly harsh but every mag in the business (even Gramophone) said it was the one to have so I bought it. That taught me a lesson.

  9. #9
    Wammer enjoy_the_music's Avatar
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    Was their reference Naim?

  10. #10
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    My mate had one, one of the best amp Pioneer ever made but that doesn't mean a lot!
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  11. #11
    Across a Wire Alex A's Avatar
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    We have one in the back living room. It's fantastic imo. But i'm sure matching has something to do with it.

    For instance, we have it driving a pair of Leak Sandwich speakers (big and warm) and it really injects some life into them. I've also had great results with B&W 601s. I can imagine the negative experiences above though if used with brighter speakers.

    For me it's very powerful indeed, clean, dynamic and exciting. It depends what you listen to. But it's pretty hard to beat for high volume blues/rock/live acoustic stuff. Although it might not please the hardened 'audiophile', it's a ton of fun, as it were.
    This is called logic. It'll set you free.

  12. #12
    Wammer
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    rudolph hucker wrote:
    harsh shouty and nasty ,i had one for a few years .
    I'm with Rudi on this one: IMO/E it was one of the most inexplicably over-rated pieces of kit it has been my misfortune to hear.

    Boxer

  13. #13
    Super Wammer cjr's Avatar
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    Alex_A wrote:
    We have one in the back living room. It's fantastic imo. But i'm sure matching has something to do with it.

    For instance, we have it driving a pair of Leak Sandwich speakers (big and warm) and it really injects some life into them. I've also had great results with B&W 601s. I can imagine the negative experiences above though if used with brighter speakers.

    For me it's very powerful indeed, clean, dynamic and exciting. It depends what you listen to. But it's pretty hard to beat for high volume blues/rock/live acoustic stuff. Although it might not please the hardened 'audiophile', it's a ton of fun, as it were.
    Alex is this the amp you were/are suggesting over are HK6550 or HK6150 ? ;).

    It cant be that amazing
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  14. #14
    Across a Wire Alex A's Avatar
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    Have you heard one properly?

    deja vu. Not sure why you're objecting, you should be happy i like some 'jap crap' as you put it.
    This is called logic. It'll set you free.

  15. #15
    Super Wammer The Strat's Avatar
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    enjoy_the_music wrote:
    Was their reference Naim?
    A friend of mine has one in his 2nd system - it rocks but can be harsh but absolutely no similarity with Naim at all.
    Nostalgia is not art (MIB 1 Jul 13)

  16. #16
    Wammer notaclue's Avatar
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    TNT reviewed tha A400X and said it had a "very warm and velvet-like sound". http://www.tnt-audio.com/ampli/400e.html

    Not the A400 but I wonder how different they were? Probably not very different.

    I use the Pioneer A300R Precision, which was a sort of follow-up to the A400.

    Nothing wrong with it as far as I can tell.

    What Hi-Fi used to say the A300R was bright and harsh but they used to say my other amp - Technics su-a700 - was warm and smooth.

    I find they sound very similar!

    So you really can't rely on what other people say about the sound of amps as it may bear little or no resemblence to what you hear.
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  17. #17
    Super Wammer cjr's Avatar
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    Alex_A wrote:
    Have you heard one properly?

    deja vu. Not sure why you're objecting, you should be happy i like some 'jap crap' as you put it.
    Wind yer neck in Alex, a realtive has one actually. Have heard it a few times so yes I have heard it properly, make a very nice din to these ears - he uses it with ancient Technic speakers with 8 inch paper cones, I was not objecting, I was actually posting in the style you joined the 6150 thread ;). And yes if you want a comparison between this amp and A400 the 6550 is in a different league IMHO. ;). nice though the A400 is. I just thought it funny this was an Amp you were pushing ahead of an amp you have not heard (you cant recall the number of the HK you heard) I'll leave you to it old chap. :mmmm:.
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  18. #18
    Wammer Steveh's Avatar
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    Post imported post





    Never heard one, this may help if you have not done review search already.

    Pioneer A400 integrated amplifier. Free data sheet by GB Audio ...
    http://www.gbaudio.co.uk/data/a400.htm - 10k - Cached - Similar pages
    I started out with nothing and I've still got most of it left..............pure genius

  19. #19
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    I've had the A400 and A400 with Tom Evans mods for few years and, with the right synergy, they still give much modern gear a run for its money IMO.

    Pros: expansive soundstage/'big sound', warm side of neutral, quite analogue sounding, very good midrange; good at conveying the spirit of the music rather than over forensic in delivery. Phono stage quite decent.

    Cons: loose in base, bit 'heavy' sounding compared to some amps, The plain A400 seems brighter in the treble than the modded one.Can't say I've found the plain onepainfullybright, aggressive or shouty in the setups I've tried. Might be my setups, or perhaps I favour what others call a 'bright' sound.

    The Tom Evans mods, as far as I can judge, seem to refine and smooth out the treble and help the bass extension and detail, giving amore euphonious sound over all.

    BTW, the A400 has a good reputation for reliability.

    Just goes to prove the rule with hifi that for every forthright opinion on a component, someone else will hold a completelycontrary point of view.

  20. #20
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    My brother has had one for 15 years. I've cleaned the pot & switches once but it still sounds fine with some JPW P1's a Systemdek and occasionally an old, relatively cheap, Technics CD Player. It was a brave move by Pioneer to make a no tone controls amp especially for the UK market but the combination of power, clarity & a good price made it the best budget amp available at the time. I've heard it working well with much better sources & speakers too.

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