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craigmclellan

Wammer
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Jun 17, 2011
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Boston, Lincolnshire
AKA
Craig
55ES is an amp suitable for moderately sized bookshelf speakers. I would say you won't get an upgrade unless you buy 2 and either run them in mono, or wire them in a vertical bi-amping configuration. You could achieve that by powering the bass drivers with one amp and then the tweeters with the other. I experimented with this and found I got a nice sweet sound by powering my CDM-1NT woofers with the VA555ES, then powering the tweeters with an N55ES. Was very good, actually. The latter is how I would recommend you try running your system if you only have 1 N55ES available to you.

The N80ES is the amp to go for - it is a lovely looking amp with the faux rosewood side panels and has power to match the size of the amp. It powers my NS-1000Ms with aplomb and doesn't run hot. Unfortunately, they are rare, very sought after so cost a lot more.

I recently sold my 2 N55ES amps - one went for 170 and the other went for 160 which I was pleased with. If you get it in good condition you won't lose money on it if it doesn't do what you want. I've had 5 of them in total because they are nice sounding amps, but they aren't powerful enough to warrant keeping long term in my opinion (obviously this depends entirely on what speakers you own, I am not familiar with yours so I cannot comment on how they might perform.)

Plus point is, they're easy to work on, do not run hot and they have a level attenuator on the front, so you don't need to run them with a pre amplifier.

 

HoopsOnToast

Legend Wammer
Wammer
Feb 6, 2006
11,628
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Rob
HiFi Trade?
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AFAIK, the N55ES is essentially the same as the TA-F570ES but without the Pre-Amp section, it certainly has the same output transistors, Transformer and PSU Smoothing Caps.

If you can, I would go for a TA-F770ES, it can be run as a power amp too. I thought it was a big upgrade over the TA-F670ES.

A TA-F670ES can be had around £100-£150 and the TA-F770ES between £250-£300.

 

cjr

Wammer
Wammer
Aug 8, 2005
8,508
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UK
You can pick up a 55ES for £100-150. Which to me is a bargain. Plenty of threads about them on Audiokarma. I first used mine as a single source amp (using volume attenuators on the front) for a PC Study system, then slotted in a Yahama C60 Anlg pre-amp. I then sourced the Sony SP-EP90ES Digitak pre-amp. Most powerful ES amp I have had in my collection was the 630ESD. Loved it but it conked. The 55ES seems to match it. Having tried it with both the Diapason Emeras and Dynaudio Contours 1.3 IIs. I'll be keeping mine (even though the TA-N80Es is tempting but rare!). But plenty of other Sony ES amps about.

As Craig mentions I have played around with the AVR Sony ES world also. Had the 2400ES and also have the 3200ES, I tried the latter recently as a Digital pre-amp and was impressed. Never tried the 2400ES in this respect.

http://www.thevintageknob.org/sony-TA-N55ES.html#

 

uzzy

Grumpy Old Git
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Apr 16, 2006
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David
HiFi Trade?
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For £100 to £150 second hand it is reasonable value - but if you want to build a system to listen to I am not sure it will improve anything over what you have (unless you just wanted a bit more grunt).  

 

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