Jump to content

MrSchnitzer

PrimaLuna; standard vs HP

Recommended Posts

I’m part way into the process of gradually upgrading most of my 2 channel system.  One of the components I’m looking to upgrade soon is my integrated amplifier, which is currently a Audiolab 8000A.

 

I’m very tempted by a PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium integrated amplifier.  I haven’t yet auditioned one but will do so soon.  But I notice that the “standard” model is listed as 2 x 36W, which I’m worried might not be powerful enough.

 

I’m no head-banger (way too old for that), but I would have thought that it’s good to have an amplifier with enough power reserve to properly cope with musical transients.  So is 2 x 36W “enough” or should I look at spending the extra money on the HP version which claims to have 2 x 70W?

 

I know that “enough” is very subjective, but I’m new to valve amps and it would be tricky to organise a home trial of both versions of the amp.

 

(My current speakers are currently a pair of Whatmough 202’s, but they’re probably going to be replaced soon too.)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's true to say that "watts aint watts" and very possible that 36 of them, well applied and driving moderately efficient speakers, will be more than enough. As an example, a good mate of mine uses Yamaha NS-1000 (90db sensitivity, so definitely moderate) being driven by 18 watts of single ended tube fury. And they are remarkable. More remarkable than when they were powered by 45 of the same style of watts actually.

 

Now the HP may very well be a distinct cut above the standard version, but don't discount the standard purely on the basis of specs. You'll find out if 36 watts cuts your mustard with a home audition soon enough (hopefully Magenta offer this?).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Magenta which is based in the Adelaide Hills are the distributors of Prima Luna, I wonder if they have some models which you could listen to or maybe they can refer you to a shop where you could compare the two.

I run speakers of 90db efficiency with 28W valve amps. For my music it is fine.

It will depend on your speakers, your room, thy type of music you listen to and then your budget.

And then tube rolling comes into it. The Prima Luna amps as far as I know can be used with different tubes.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would in this case (if you are on a tight budget) hold off the purchase of the amp before you have settled on the speakers . Better still if you can get the dealer to set up a demo with both items you are interested in.

 

If you are dead set on getting the amp first and speakers second,  (and only if funds allow) I would go for the HP version which uses double the number of tubes for double the power.  You can never have too much power and the extra headroom is always welcome in any setup. 70 wpc is about as low as one should go so as not be too restricted in choice of speakers.

 

 

Edited by Sir Triode

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info, it is appreciated.  (Yes, I'll be talking to Magenta soon, but wanted to go in well prepared!)

 

My budget is fairly flexible, I'm ok with spending a fair bit but only if I feel that I'm getting vaue for money.  I can afford the HP, but if it's overkill then I'd rather stick with the standard model.

 

However, based on what @Jventer  says, it might simplify things if I buy new speakers first and THEN look at amplification.  For what it's worth, I'm currently leaning towards a pair of Focal Aria 926 speakers, but I'm also going to soon demo some Lenehan ML1's to see if it's worth paying the extra for those.

 

Then again maybe I should just go straight with the HP; as @Sir Triode  says it'll future-proof my setup.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another good thing about the HP version is that you can swap the output tubes to KT150s (at a cost) which will then make it a 96 wpc amplifier.

 

70 watts x 2 (EL34)
73 watts x 2 (KT88)
89 watts x 2 (KT120)
96 watts x 2 (KT150)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I have the  PimaLuna Dialogue Premium integrated amplifier (Non HP) and are very happy with its performance, have KT120's (44 watts) in at the moment and have also used KT88's (40 watts). I'm using 30 year old speakers with sensitivity of 89db with good effect although i don't listen at ground thumping levels. Best to have a demo somewhere you wont be disappointed:)

 

Don't forget its not all about power, the rectifier tubes can be changed as well for great results.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am using the Prologue Premium integrated with EL34 tubes 35W x2 with 87dB efficient speakers at 2.2m listen position in a medium (72m3) open plan room. I haven't the need for putting the volume up past the 1/4 point before everything will become uncomfortably loud >85dB. If the volume meter acts in a exponential way guessing would be that I am using around 1 - 2W of output, the SPL meter is saying that I am using a little over 1W of output. 87dB at 1M, 84dB at 2M.  Although tube amps delivery their best with the first few watts as I have been told.

Edited by Primare Knob
typo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@MrSchnitzer Any progress on auditioning or purchasing the PrimaLuna?

I ask because I have been eyeing off the PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium HP Integrated Amplifier (EL34).

 

I'm in Brisbane and it looks like Magenta is the place to order from because Brisbane stores that do say they have them actually don't and so it makes sense it order directly from Magenta anyway.

So interested in any feedback on your experience with dealing with Magenta.

 

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, spin33 said:

@MrSchnitzer Any progress on auditioning or purchasing the PrimaLuna?

I ask because I have been eyeing off the PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium HP Integrated Amplifier (EL34).

 

I'm in Brisbane and it looks like Magenta is the place to order from because Brisbane stores that do say they have them actually don't and so it makes sense it order directly from Magenta anyway.

So interested in any feedback on your experience with dealing with Magenta.

 

Cheers

 

Just do it ....... you won't regret it ........ and then you can take it to Mr Lenehan and he will wave a magic wand over it (or change some capacitors) and it will sound even better ...... :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By HarbethRob
      Item: Primaluna Dialogue Premium Integrated Amplifier with KT88 tubes
      Location:Denmark, WA
      Price: $2,900 plus shipping.
      Item Condition:Excellent and in perfect working order
      Reason for selling:Rationalising gear and moving to solid state
      Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only
      Extra Info:
       
      I purchased this Primaluna dialogue premium amp in July 2015 from Aussie Hi fi. It is in excellent condition and perfect working order. There is a slight knick on one of the input terminals on the back that I made. It has a set of Primaluna KT88 power tubes and I have several sets of preamp tubes including prima luna and tung sol which I will also include. I am moving away from tubes and into solid state for the time being. No doubt that will change again in the future but for now it is sitting unused which is just silly. It has been driving a pair of Harbeth Super HL5s with ease. Of course, the Primaluna gets outstanding reviews and I will leave it to anyone interested to look those up. Dont hesitate to contact me by PM or phone to discuss. Cheers
       
      Rob
       
      Pictures:




    • By Rockster
      Item: Primaluna Dialogue Premium Power Amp
      Location: Melbourne
      Price: $2695
      Item Condition: Immaculate
      Reason for selling: Regretful sale to fund another purchase
      Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only
      Extra Info:
       
      Bought brand new in April 2017, so it's just over 18 months old, the amp was unpacked onto a HiFi shelf in a dedicated music room and hasn't moved since. It's in as new condition and comes complete with all original supplied accessories including the remote, cotton gloves, spare fuses etc, and also the double box. I am selling it with the original Primaluna KT88 and 12AU7 valves, which have probably had less than 30 hours use, and are excellent valves in their own right. This is a second amp in my system, or spare as my wife says, so it's not had a lot of use.
       
      I think this amp is truly a giant killer and, I'm my experience, for the money nothing comes close. It responds so well to different types of valves and I particularly love the sound of the Genalex Gold Lion KT77's, but you can also use EL34's, KT120's and KT150's (as well as the supplied KT88's). And if that's not enough fun for you, you can also roll the 12AU7's input valves just as easily. This is due to the clever adaptive bias system the amp which makes 'rolling valves' a simple plug and play process. On top of that the adaptive bias runs valves in a low stress state so they last a lot longer than in some other amps, all this with impacting the sound.
       
      The amp has plenty of power, my speaker's sensitivity are 87db, and it drives them really well. You also get a choice of 4, 8 and 16 ohm taps so you can match a wide variety of speakers. The advantage of this particular version of Dialogue is that you only need to buy a quad of power values if you want to play with different types and it makes the exotic NOS valves more attainable.
       
      There are many many glowing reviews online, just do a quick search, but to quote one very famous HiFi critic, Art Dudley from Stereophile Magazine, “I tried to find fault with the PrimaLuna DiaLogue Premium. I failed.”
       
      Pictures:










    • By IanB
      Item:  Primaluna Dialogue Premium HP Power Amplifier
      Location: North Fitzroy
      Price: $3350
      Item Condition: Immaculate - except for one scratch on casing
      Reason for selling: No time to listen. Need money for other priorities
      Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, COD Only
      Extra Info:
      Comes with a set of KT150- lush big sounding amp. Read all the reviews. Many can be found on line. Some links below. With the KT150s new value of amp approxiamately $6000,  This Amp is the high powered version. Double the number of output tubes. Retails for  $5400 with less expensive KT88s. Urgent sale. Need money to buy something else. Not HIFI! . Also selling some Lenehan ML2s..  This combination sounds great. It was because of Mike Lenehan the designer of ML2s that I brought the Primaluna.
      Also includes Tube cage and original packaging.
      Some reviews http://www.the-ear.net/review-hardware/primaluna-dialogue-premium-hp-power-amplifier  https://www.dagogo.com/primaluna-dialogue-premium-hp-power-amplifier-review/

       
      Pictures:





    • By Rockster
      Item: Primaluna Dialogue Premium Power Amp
      Location: Sandringham
      Price: $2950
      Item Condition: Immaculate
      Reason for selling: Regretful sale due to a vehicle purchase
      Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal, EFT, COD Only
      Extra Info: I know people always say that it's a regretful sale, but this truely is, I agreed that I would sell some of my 'spare' HiFi to fund the purchase of a vehicle.
       
      Anyway, I bought this power amp brand new in April 2017 so it's just over 18 months old. It was unpacked onto a HiFi shelf in a dedicated music room and hasn't moved since. It's in as new condition and comes complete with all original supplied accessories including the remote, cotton gloves, spare fuses etc, and also the double box. I am selling it with the original Primaluna KT88 and 12AU7 valves, which have probably had less than 30 hours use, and are excellent valves in their own right. This is a second amp in my system, or spare as my wife says, so it's not had a lot of use.
       
      I think this amp is truely a giant killer and, I'm my experience, for the money nothing comes close. It respond so well to upgrades and I particularly love the Genalex Gold Llion KT77's in it, but you can also use EL34's, KT120's and KT150's (as well as the supplied KT88's). And if that's not enough fun for you, you can also upgrade of the 12AU7's input valves. Due to the clever adaptive bias system the amp uses all this can be done easily and 'rolling valves' is a simple plug and play process.
       
      The amp has plenty of power, my speaker's sensitivity is 87db, and it drives them really well. You also get a choice of 4, 8 and 16 ohm taps so you can match a wide variety of speakers. The advantage of this particular version of Dialogue is that you only need to buy a quad of power values if you want to play with different types and it makes the exotic NOS valves more attainable.
       
      There are many many glowing reviews online, just do a quick search.
       
      Pictures:










    • By Primare Knob
      Item: PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium Pre-Amplifier
      Location: 3782 VIC
      Price: $2.600 plus shipping
      Item Condition: Excellent
      Reason for selling: Chasing butterflies.
      Payment Method: Pickup - Cash, Paypal (Friend) .
      Extra Info: Item can be shipped in original packaging.
      Extra Info: Item can be auditioned.

      This amp has been my reference for audio, but is hardly being used since I mostly watch movies or play games in my home theater room. I kept it around because it is such a great performer, but it deserves a whole lot more use than what I am giving it. Because of this I have decided to chase butterflies in pursuit of the same kind of performance in multichannel audio and looking for a new home and free up some funds.


       
      Pictures:




×