So, I've been running the Audiolab 8200P in my system for a while and it's been really nice, I had always planned on getting a second one and bi-amping, so when one finally turned up on Trademe, I snapped it up!
I took it home, pulled out the existing amp, didn't touch anything else and simply plugged all the existing cables into the new 8200P. I was immediately floored by how different it sounded. I'm not talking subtle differences, I'm talking COMPLETELY different. The new amp immediately doubled the width of the sound stage and had way more transparency and detail in the upper frequencies, however it has a much leaner sound overall and can even be a little brittle in the upper mids. When turning up the old amp, it would just keep getting bigger and louder, but it would stay warm and un-fatiguing and the bass would stay in proportion, when turning up the new amp, it can get a bit bright and it definitely compresses the sound earlier.
One has a serial number in the 300 range and the other has a serial number in the 800 range.
Has anyone experienced anything as drastic as this in the same model? In the decade I spent working in the industry, I certainly never encountered two examples of the same model sounding drastically different.
I'm wondering if one of them isn't functioning to its full potential...