Calling Shahinian Arc owners past and present!

Tazman46

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Oct 19, 2012
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Trev
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Hi guys, the box swapping bug has bitten and I'm currently trying out a DK Designs VS1 ref. MK3, a stunning amp on paper but it seems to highlight how bright the Arcs are, something I hadn't particularly noticed before with my Prophet / Exposure Dual IV combo. I've tried the DK with some of my other speakers and none show the harsh treble trait to the same degree as the Arcs. I love everything else the DK does and it's quite an eye opener but I hadn't banked on building an entire system around it, more a case of wanting to build around the Arcs as it goes. I'm now thinking valves could be the way to go on the power side too and am potentially making a long trip to listen to something at the weekend.

Before I go, does anyone have any advice on good partnering equipment and I suppose more specifically whether they encountered the same brightness / harshness and found the anti-dote? Many thanks.

 

Lefty

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You rang? :mrgreen:

I've owned Arcs twice in the past and thoroughly enjoyed my time with them. They weren't overly bright to my ears, so I'd be interested to know what speakers you are comparing them against? (It could be that we have different reference points re: bright speakers). The Obelisks on the other hand can sound bright. I actually prefer the Arcs.

In terms of amplification, I used:

Dynavector L100 / HX75 - These sounded superb. In fact, I ran these for almost 2 years with the Arcs, which is saying something for a box swapper like me!

Dynavector L300 II / HX75 - People rave about the L300 II pre and so I just had to try one. Unfortunately, it sounded worse to my ears than the humble little L100. (Too clinical and dry).

Puresound A30 - This sounded every bit as good as the L100 / HX75 combo whilst costing less money. Arcs are actually relatively easy to drive and this was proved by how good the A30 sounded with them. I would say it's definitely worth trying a good valve amp with them before you call it a day*

The other thing to consider is your room. Despite what people say, Shahinians need a decent size room to work properly. (That's why I don't have them anymore. I am now in a smaller room).

Hope this helps and will be interested to hear what you decide to do :)

Lefty

* The only exception to this is single ended valves. Buoyed by my success with the Puresound A30, I decided to try a pair of 845 SET monoblocks with the Arcs. I figured that if 30W of valve power were enough, then surely 25W would be ok too. I was very wrong. The single ended nature of the 845 amps meant that they were sadly not man enough for the task. I got much better results with a pair of AN AZ1. But that's another story altogether.....

 
B

bigguy

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dynavector hx75 just turned up on hifi for sale .com £995 whith a L200 pre £695

 

Tazman46

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Hi Lefty, thank you very much, many potential options to try there. I didn't think they sounded bright either until I played the DK through them. They are an early pair so maybe a different vintage & sound to what you had? Admittedly it all started with a particularly thrashy sounding Green Day album, which had me turning it all down very quickly & then I started fixating on that trait and what else might upset them. I must stress they're fine with my existing amps and if I hadn't had the desire to tinkle I wouldn't be writing any of this!

I don't think room size is an issue here as it's around 16' x 30' with me sat about half way down the length. Personally I find that they don't need careful set up and for that reason I don't even bother keeping them in the listening position when they're not in use.

What a shame that it's exactly an 845 I had in mind! You may have saved me a long drive there, had it not been so far away I would have gone ahead anyway, as it is I need to give it some more thought. Thanks again for all your help.

 

One Drop

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I had some Arcs until recently... They sounded great with a Musical Fidelity Synthesis and even better with an A&R Cambs SA200, which was a bit more neutral than the warm-ish sounding Synthesis.

When I tried them with a Musical Fidelity A5, they scared the sh*t out of me - very bright. The bass was very lean and controlled though..

 

Tazman46

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Oct 19, 2012
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I had some Arcs until recently... They sounded great with a Musical Fidelity Synthesis and even better with an A&R Cambs SA200, which was a bit more neutral than the warm-ish sounding Synthesis. When I tried them with a Musical Fidelity A5, they scared the sh*t out of me - very bright. The bass was very lean and controlled though..
Thanks Tom, that's some vintage stuff you're talking about there. I'll have a look into that as I shouldn't think it it will cost an awful lot to give it a try. Pretty sure my 1st ever real amp was A & R, no idea what but it was a black slab with a green round glow around the power button, probably the sole reason I bought it from the 2nd hand shop and so began the slippery slope :D

 

tommy1

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I had a pair few years ago, don't remember them being bright. I had some Naim stuff (72 pre, Hicap, 250 power) then some Avondale s/s monos and pre, finally I think I had them on the end of a Tube Technology Unisis integrated. I replaced them with a pair of World Audio Design 25T floorstanders which, to my ears sounded better and only cost me a third of the money I got for the Arcs. TBH I think Arcs needed more space than I could offer. They never sounded as good in my room as they did in the room of the chap who sold them to me. He said that the Dynavector amps were a good match for Shahinians, as per Leftys post.

 

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