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e32lover

Most powerful 5.1 under 5k?

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If 2 channel is more important, I would skew the budget towards a reasonably decent AVR rather than a pre pro. I'd suggest waiting for the new Denon 2013 models to arrive first. There's a new X4000 which is about half the price of their current (mid) flagship the 4520 and does just about everything the flagship does (save for supporting 11 channels of sound processing). This includes Audyssey XT32. I read that it is selling for S$1.4k or around A$1.1k. The other option is the Onkyo 818 (last year's model). If you don't need 3D, I have an old Denon 4810 which is HDMI 1.3 compliant and IMHO out performs the 4520 in the sound department and has pre outs for all 11 channels. I just took it out of the system (replaced with a Marantz AV8801).

 

I would put more of the money then on a 2 channel system with HT bypass. For the budget, I'd have a look at the Wyred4Sound mAmp monoblocks and a tube preamp like a Modwright LS100, maybe second hand if you can find it. 

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a good quality 2ch integrated with ht bypass coupled to a mid range avr in my opinion is a great combination if trying to achieve a system with excellent 2ch abilities and does ht pretty good justice.

 

$2k-$3k should buy a really good 2ch integrated eg the musical fidelity a5, or nad m3 on second hand market. both power houses and with decent pre stages and all importantly with a ht bypass(nads enabled by firmware).

 

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NAD-M3-Steeo-Integrated-Amplifier-Ex-Demonstration-/290774718493?pt=AU_Electronics_Audio_Amplifiers&hash=item43b386181d&_uhb=1

 

couple with any avr in the $2-$3k mark again here you will find good grunty ones e.g. the ones have mentioned already or can also choose as suggested a latest denon or the like. the grunty 2c integrated will take a lot of load off the avr in driving the mains. and dont forget the sub also takes a lot of load off the avr in driving the other channels. hence a very good arrangement that many I know use to great success :)

Edited by :) al

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Emotiva will be purchased.

 

Good choice on a watts per dollar basis.       I would personally recommend speakers which didn't need such large amounts of power ..... so it's a bit moot .... Although this all does depend on how much SPL you require.    "Normal" efficiency speakers, in a big room, at THX reference.   Then bigup the watts  :-D

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I would still say put speakers first though, its where literally rubber hits the road. any "old garbage" is only going to give said result. I would personally be choosing speakers first. and really thats probably most influential on kind of sound your chasing. amps you simply get to support their need. and no dont need massive watts in my experience quality is more important. infact to the point get a quality amp with plenty of headroom and you find you actually listen at lower volumes. dont need to crank to the max to enjoy. this has been an experienced repeadly reported over and over and over again have seen from people upgrading to quality amps. watts hopefully I illustrated in the link I posted is not be all and end all. but look no rights and wrongs in this stuff a lot of approaches am sure you'll work your way through end up with something hits the spot :)

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I would still say put speakers first though

 

This for sure.    In the scheme of things there is vastly more difference in performance between different speakers, than different amplifiers (when they are used fairly).

 

It is unfortunately much harder to fairly A/B speakers   (rooms and placement have so much effect, and no instant switching possibility)

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$5000 5.1 avr... Try the primare spa23 av amp.

A mate has the prior version, puts out very nice sound into his vaf i93 mk1's.

I reckon it'd be nice one box solution for a beach house.

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The primare would be a beauty. 2ch and ht in one.

To give op a headsup

http://www.dtvforum.info/index.php?showtopic=133446#entry1894455

That there is a top line integra avr going for $1700 shipped !

Not lacking in power ! For bulk of people be more than adequate and leaves bulk of the $5k budget as in $3300 untouched to add something really decent for the 2ch side of things :)

Edited by :) al

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Basically I am more interested in the 2 chanel music aspect of it, but a certain person demands 5.1 so it has to be 5.1 Anyway I thought it would be great to get the amp and source unit first, and just get something way overkill as this needs to go in ASAP, then I will have a bit of time to audition speakers, and I wont be restricted in my choice due to amp power output. I havnt thought too much about mains yet except that I would like some large 3 way floorstanders, prob around the 4k mark i think would get me something sufficient. With the rest of the system (subs, surrounds, centre) I will just use the complete garbage I have now, and upgrade that later when the finances recover. Like I said I am primarily focussed on having an epic 2 ch system at the moment, with a view to a really top end 5.1 system eventually.

 

Emotiva will be purchased.

Nice. I'm sure you will enjoy it :)

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Good choice.  A mate just got 2x xpa1's and they sound great.

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I got the Emotiva 5x400 and the emotiva source unit. Came to about 3k delivered after i got slugged $450 customs duty + GST. They catch everything these days. Havnt unboxed it yet, i think the amp is made of solid concrete. Im afraid if I remove it from the box i will not be able to move it anywhere.

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Congratulations!  :)  :)  

 

Nice to see it is impressively solid.....   

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speaker first then amp or avr, but still depend on music or HT, even music stll depend on which style you like, classic or pop ? 5000$ can do much better than just go for Emotiva.

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Emotiva are very appealing for their price and what they offer for it. However, I'm not sure if you realise the implications of this decision. It affects your choice of speakers a great deal. Firstly, most speakers will not be able to handle the power. Typically 50w will cause most bass drivers to reach their excursion limits. 400w is enough power to destroy bass drivers mechanically and fry them thermally. Can you be trusted to drive the drag racer safely?!

 

There are many speakers that are not well paired with Emotiva amps. Many audiophiles with a lot of experience with different systems may not like the sound of Emotiva products - primarily those who prefer electronics that have a mellow/warm character and that doesn't describe anything Emotiva. Many speakers as a result will not sound very good paired with anything Emotiva.

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Many speakers as a result will not sound very good paired with anything Emotiva.

 

I actually find that pretty hard to believe. Perhaps not to someone's tonal taste because Emotiva (apparently) have a pretty flat frequency response, but I don't think there's a speaker that'll sound "not very good" with this choice of amp.

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Come off it, Paul. It's all about headroom, not continuous power. I know a couple of guys with those 750W Musical Fidelity 'supercharger' amps. Strangely enough they don't have 1000W speakers, and strangely enough they haven't blown their speakers up. But you would know that; you're no fool. 

 

I'm absolutely gobsmacked by posts #38 and #39. Dissing on the OP's choice after he chose and bought the amp? Where were your bright and sparky opinions after posts #5 and #7? As Johnny Cash would have sung, Just the other side of nowhere

 

Now, if I look on the bright side, just as a total policy reversal for this thread, the Emotiva amp will open up some speaker options that are well suited to its output, that might not cruise so well on a 40W amp that goes best with 90+ dB/W speakers. The OP is asking for your enlightened input along these lines in another thread. 

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I actually find that pretty hard to believe. Perhaps not to someone's tonal taste because Emotiva (apparently) have a pretty flat frequency response, but I don't think there's a speaker that'll sound "not very good" with this choice of amp.

 

None of my designs will sound poor with Emotiva amps - I design speakers that don't require the electronics to alter the sound tonally. However, there are many speakers that will not sound very good with Emotiva amps. This is very subjective of course and no doubt many will disagree. There are many however, who know exactly what I'm talking about.

 

Many audiophiles with speakers that are slightly bright or forward in character choose to tame the sound elsewhere in the system, with turntables, valves, cables, amps. I don't favour this approach and instead prefer to use transparent and neutral electronics and with speakers that don't require adjustment or taming.

 

Having said this, Emotiva amps aren't the last word in technical performance. Their published measurements show very poor distortion measurements once one steps below power levels normally used in conventional passive speakers. I know little about the design of power amps, but I understand this points towards the bias settings which favour reliability over better sonics. Changing the biasing would cause the amp to run hotter and operate in class A mode more of the time.

 

That said, I am intending to demo LSK kits on an Emotiva power amp and surround processor. Ultimately, I expect I may also have something higher end to demo other products. I have not had the chance to do the critical listening involved and some of these designs are on the drawing board right now.

 

My experience has been that you can't rely much on your preconceptions about how things will sound. There are things you expect to sound average, that you can't pick at all blind. And there are things you don't expect to pick that defy your expectations.

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I'm absolutely gobsmacked by posts #38 and #39. Dissing on the OP's choice after he chose and bought the amp? 

 

I'm flabbergasted that you're gobsmacked.

 

Somebody gives advice that:

  • You should ideally choose an amp for speakers (not the other way around)
  • Choosing more power than you need is a generally bad idea

... and they're doing the wrong thing?

 

 

They're only "dissing his choice"  if he is actually going to run into the above problems.   If he truly does need or want the power, and has well matching speakers..... then fine.

 

 

I'd call any advice given about amplifiers before asking questions about speakers and listening levels pretty ill-conceived 'advice'.... and I think that needs to be called out.

 

 

It's all about headroom, not continuous power

 

At the top of the output range it is, sure ..... but much more importantly is what happens at average levels.

 

If you have 92 dB speakers, don't buy an amplifier with rubbish performance around 500 mW.

Edited by davewantsmoore

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Great posts Paul, I totally and 100% agree :)

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I've never come across driver damage from too much power. In fact the converse is true. When the power amp isn't delivering enough power, the clipping causes DC to be sent to the drivers. That seems to have damaged the drivers more frequently.

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I've never come across driver damage from too much power.

 

Try harder  (evil laugh).... but yes, most modern drivers are very robust.

 

 

When the power amp isn't delivering enough power, the clipping causes DC to be sent to the drivers. That seems to have damaged the drivers more frequently.

 

Yep, a small amplifier clipping can hurt speakers.

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Come off it, Paul. It's all about headroom, not continuous power. I know a couple of guys with those 750W Musical Fidelity 'supercharger' amps. Strangely enough they don't have 1000W speakers, and strangely enough they haven't blown their speakers up. But you would know that; you're no fool. 

 

Hello Newman

 

I don't think you are being fair to people offering different views.

 

I presume you know, that you are not comparing apples with apples re the Emotiva you recommend versus the MF 750K you refer to.

Just because they are both amplifiers, doesn't mean they are comparable.

 

I think it would be like comparing a Mazda 3 with a current AMG 630.

 

They are both 4 door sedans, they are both competent at what they are designed to do, but they are really designed for different markets and designed for different applications.

 

You are comparing the Emotiva with this http://www.stereophile.com/solidpoweramps/1208mf

 

If the Emotiva is the right choice for the OP, then good.

But the OP asked an open question on an open forum. He will get differing views.

 

Yours or others is not the only answer.

 

As always, it is up to the OP to wade through all the differing responses & act as he/she sees fit.

 

Graham

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Make up your mind Dave, the OP's head must be spinning from reading your comments in isolation.

 

The OP clearly knew what sort of speakers he wanted when he asked for amp advice -- as we now know from his thread on speakers. He asked for the most powerful and when he gets it, only then, the posts come rolling in, "what did you buy that for?". 

That's not helpful. Except maybe for his next amp purchase.  :P

 

I'm flabbergasted that you're gobsmacked.

 

Somebody gives advice that:

  • You should ideally choose an amp for speakers (not the other way around)
  • Choosing more power than you need is a generally bad idea

... and they're doing the wrong thing?

 

I'd call any advice given about amplifiers before asking questions about speakers and listening levels pretty ill-conceived 'advice'.... and I think that needs to be called out.

 

And yet on 25 June, when he wrote in response to your question, that he is buying amp before speakers, you didn't 'call out' anything. And 4 days before that, you had suggested the Marantz MM8003. [edit: this all happened 3 months ago.]

 

His head must be so spinning! Well, mine is!  :lol:

Edited by Newman

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i never saw anyone blow their speakers because too powerful amp, they blew it because listening too loud and too long outside their capabilities.

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Hello Newman

 

Heh heh, you need to put Newman in italics, Jerry!

 

 

 

I don't think you are being fair to people offering different views.

 

I presume you know, that you are not comparing apples with apples re the Emotiva you recommend versus the MF 750K you refer to.

 

The comparison was in relation to the Emotiva blowing up speakers with its power. If the MF750K doesn't blow 'em up, that is a perfect example of why the Emotiva might also not do it.

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