Originally Posted by dac-906
Regarding the test data, you're making this (.1%) sound as if this is bad amplifier design when in reality, and every expert agrees that even a 1.0% distortion is STILL a very good amplifier. Would you call a Pass Lab amplifier a bad sounding amplifier? No... in fact their one of the gold standards (imo). But check one of their amps the Xs300 a $85,000/pair 300w mono and you'll see that it is rated at 1.0% distortion at rated power. Or the Krell Solo 375 a $29,900/pair 375w mono and rated at <0.19% @20Khz on 8 ohm. I think Emotiva is in good company! Another accepted fact by experts is that below 1.0% or even the difference between 0.1% and 0.05% is already inaudible and are just use for marketing purposes.
Lastly, Emotiva is one of the few companies that provide more information about their products (even AP test data) than most say Outlaw. Not saying that Outlaw is bad... but wouldn't you trust a company that is more transparent than one that has very limited information?
Like I said, the best test is to hear them and even better if you can hear them in your own listening environment.
You have given a couple of class A amplifiers, which are a different animal than Emotiva's class AB. Class A amps are sought after for their pleasing distortion qualities(even order vs odd order). My point is simple on the distortion measurements of Emotiva amps. I am not claiming theirs is a bad amp design. I'm not claiming that one can hear .1% distortion. If you go back and re-read my post, all I'm saying is it's cheaper to build a class AB amp @ 200 wpc amp whose distortion curve is already climbing, than to build the same amp whose distortion curve does not climb at the 200 watt level. The second amp will also have more headroom before distortion hits detectible levels(by the human ear). That costs more money. Emotiva cut a corner here to sell it more cheaply. Most of their XPA and UPA amps also have smaller power supplies, caps and less output devices per channel than other companies. All to make a cheaper amp, and like I said in my previous post, THAT IS FINE. What I object to is people claiming that they are just as good as amps costing much more. That's a load of bunk. They make a budget amp that has good build quality, and is worth the money charged. But they are not the amazing deal fanboys make them out to be.
I've owned 3 Emotiva products, so I know of what I speak( I used to be a huge fanboy btw). When compared to other amps I own, the XPA amp fell short. I used to believe that all amps sound the same until this point, and let me tell you I was shocked.
Anyway, on the transparent idea, Emotiva is transparent when they want to be. When it became clear that the Chinese company Tonewinner was heavily involved in designing the UMC-1 and other products, Emotiva clammed up. When it was proved that the XDA-1 was indeed NOT lossless volume controlled, Emotiva was silent on the matter until the model was replaced with the XDA-2 and the remaining XDA-1's were being sold off at a heavy discount. When TacT was unable to implement their product on the XMC, Emotiva was silent on the matter until Dirac had signed on the dotted line to give it a go. Only then did Emotiva update the long suffering customers waiting for their orders that the XMC was being delayed yet again. And Dirac STILL hasn't been installed in the XMC. This past Roadshow event that Emotiva held in various cities, they told not one customer the reason why they couldn't demonstrate Dirac on their flagship product. I could go on, but I think I've made my point.
Look, at the end of the day, Emotiva is a company trying to make a buck, and like I keep saying, that is fine. They make mistakes and hopefully learn from them. They make some decent products, some not so good, and they've made some lemons. But I will always differ with the idea that their amps are as good as anything out there. All you have to do is look under the hood if you know what you're looking for. Test them against other brands if you know what to listen for. If not, you'll think Emotiva is king. For the rest of us, the king has no clothes.