The *OFFICIAL* Vienna Acoustics Owners Thread - Page 102 - AVS Forum
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post #3031 of 3049 Old 06-28-2014, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by ei001h View Post
Thank you Artur, your comments appreciated.

I've been looking at Emotiva and ADCOM amps. Any experience with these?

Do you think that Using my Pioneer elite as a pre-amp would degrade the overall sound quality?
Im looking at parasound now.
Do you know about P3/A23?

Will I need a DAC in addition to preamp and an amp?

what are the advantages of a mono block vs. 2 channel amp?
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post #3032 of 3049 Old 06-29-2014, 07:02 AM
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Im looking at parasound now.
Do you know about P3/A23?
Only by reputation. IMO, for the Mozarts you're going to need more power than the A23 has. When I went from the A52 (same power as A23) to the Belles (a bit more but with more "headroom") the difference was clearly audible.

Again, in your position, I would use the Pioneer as a preamp and buy the best amp I could find. Something high current with 200watts per channel @ 4ohms. The A21 would work better than the A23. I think the high current part is where Emotiva fails, IIRC.

On the other hand, there are all kinds of nice preamps out there on the used market.
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Will I need a DAC in addition to preamp and an amp?
Not if you keep the Pioneer but the P3 doesn't have a DAC. Schitt Audio makes some affordable DACs that sound great.
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what are the advantages of a mono block vs. 2 channel amp?
That's a topic beyond anything I can discuss. I always look at it as a way to keep channel separation better and the flexibility of having an amp for a single channel.
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post #3033 of 3049 Old 06-29-2014, 07:12 PM
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Only by reputation. IMO, for the Mozarts you're going to need more power than the A23 has. When I went from the A52 (same power as A23) to the Belles (a bit more but with more "headroom") the difference was clearly audible.

Again, in your position, I would use the Pioneer as a preamp and buy the best amp I could find. Something high current with 200watts per channel @ 4ohms. The A21 would work better than the A23. I think the high current part is where Emotiva fails, IIRC.

On the other hand, there are all kinds of nice preamps out there on the used market.

Not if you keep the Pioneer but the P3 doesn't have a DAC. Schitt Audio makes some affordable DACs that sound great.

That's a topic beyond anything I can discuss. I always look at it as a way to keep channel separation better and the flexibility of having an amp for a single channel.
A23 has Continuous power output:
125 watts RMS x 2, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 8 Ω, both channels driven
225 watts RMS x 2, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 4 Ω, both channels driven
400 watts RMS x 1, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 8 Ω

Current capacity:
45 amperes peak per channel

How is this inadequate for Mozarts? Is it the current capacity? A21 has 400w into 4 Ω with 60 pas per channel.

What about odyssey stratos? it has :
2 x 150 Watts RMS @ 8 Ohms
2 Ohm load stable
45 amps current delivery

Does this mean it will deliver more power into 4 ohms?

Thank you for your feedback
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post #3034 of 3049 Old 06-29-2014, 07:19 PM
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No, I haven't heard those. I've only experience with old Rotels (really old), Yamaha, and recently the Parasound and Belles.

I know on this thread the Primares also came highly recommended. After my recent experience switching from Parasound to the Belles I'm not in the "all good amps sound the same" camp.



Pioneer elites have a good name so I wouldn't be in a rush to replace it. But I haven't heard them in many years. Judging from the spec sheet it has a good amount of connectivity.

It's hard to hear the differences in preamps if the amps aren't of equal or better quality, assuming the speakers are good enough to reveal them. Since we're talking Mozart Grands I know they can
Which belles amp do you have? Any experience with their integrated amps?
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post #3035 of 3049 Old 06-29-2014, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ei001h View Post
A23 has Continuous power output:
225 watts RMS x 2, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 4 Ω, both channels driven
How is this inadequate for Mozarts? Is it the current capacity? A21 has 400w into 4 Ω with 60 pas per channel.
I'm just going by my experience with the A52 versus the Belles 150A Hot Rod. My Haydns, which sounded good with the A52, definitely sounds richer with the Belles. That little bit of extra power made a noticeable difference. Makes me want to try the Belles 350 but I thought that was way too much power. I'm reconsidering that.

The Mozarts, being larger, I would expect would like even more power.

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What about odyssey stratos? it has :
2 x 150 Watts RMS @ 8 Ohms
2 Ohm load stable
45 amps current delivery

Does this mean it will deliver more power into 4 ohms?

Not necessarily more power but better power. The Vienna Acoustics speakers, while rated at 4Ohms, can actually dip somewhat below that. I think Stereophile measured them as going down to 2.5 - 3.0 Ohms. So you would want an amp that can handle that so that the Mozarts sound as good as they can.

The Parasounds can do that but the Belles seems to do it more effortlessly, for whatever reason (I am not an audio engineer). From what I've read about the Odysseys they seem a good match for what the Vienna Acoustics want as well.

Any of the amps we're talking about are probably better than the Belles I have, though.
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post #3036 of 3049 Old 06-29-2014, 07:56 PM
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Which belles amp do you have? Any experience with their integrated amps?
Supposedly, Belles' integrated are quite literally their preamps built into the same chassis as their amps. Their Soloist 5 is definitely described that way.

But no personal experience with that. I know of a Belles pre that was listed on audiogon that is still for sale, last I heard.
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post #3037 of 3049 Old 06-30-2014, 04:52 PM
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i have almost the same setup as robonaut, but i have the parasound 2100 with ht bypass and the ps 2250 amp, and the marantz 8001 sacd. with a rel t3 sub. and the mozarts shine with this setup! i do agree that the va are a little laid back, but are very smooth, warm a very musical! image like crazy with good speaker placement and a good powerful amp. but more importantly a real good preamp. i had b&w 804s for years and liked the mozarts so much i traded the 804s for the mozarts.
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post #3038 of 3049 Old 06-30-2014, 05:08 PM
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imo avr amp combo is not the way to go. an avr main priority is digital first,(movies gaming systems, cable) the preouts are an after thought. look for a preamp that has ht bypass i know parasound makes them. the 2100 and p5 come to mind, preamps are built for two chn audio! i went threw this problem using a marantz with an adcom 555mk2 plugged into the preouts and the sound was "muddy" when i added the 2100 with ht bypass my mozarts came out of the dark.
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post #3039 of 3049 Old 07-04-2014, 09:47 PM
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imo avr amp combo is not the way to go. an avr main priority is digital first,(movies gaming systems, cable) the preouts are an after thought. look for a preamp that has ht bypass i know parasound makes them. the 2100 and p5 come to mind, preamps are built for two chn audio! i went threw this problem using a marantz with an adcom 555mk2 plugged into the preouts and the sound was "muddy" when i added the 2100 with ht bypass my mozarts came out of the dark.
I've been looking around and trying to decide between an integrated vs. separates for my Mozart Grands.

I have a choice between krell S300i and S550i integrated. Has anyone tried them with MG? Is there a big difference between them?

Other choices are for integrated: Belles soloist 1 and 5. vs. Odyssey cyclops

Separate Amps: Levinson 23.5 (2000$), Krell kst100 (1000$), Levinson 27 ($1500) ADCOM 555ii ($350)

Have not found any decent pre-amps. Possible idea parasound a23/p5. This will be the cheapest set, I believe.

Any suggestions appreciated. I mostly listen to classical/opera. Should I be looking at separates or just get an integrated? How much of a difference is there? I don't want something that's going to be noisy and extremely hot, and it has to be nice to look at. I want adequate power, should I aim for greater than 200w?

Thank you.
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post #3040 of 3049 Old 07-05-2014, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by ei001h View Post
I've been looking around and trying to decide between an integrated vs. separates for my Mozart Grands.

I have a choice between krell S300i and S550i integrated. Has anyone tried them with MG? Is there a big difference between them?

Other choices are for integrated: Belles soloist 1 and 5. vs. Odyssey cyclops

Separate Amps: Levinson 23.5 (2000$), Krell kst100 (1000$), Levinson 27 ($1500) ADCOM 555ii ($350)

Have not found any decent pre-amps. Possible idea parasound a23/p5. This will be the cheapest set, I believe.

Any suggestions appreciated. I mostly listen to classical/opera. Should I be looking at separates or just get an integrated? How much of a difference is there? I don't want something that's going to be noisy and extremely hot, and it has to be nice to look at. I want adequate power, should I aim for greater than 200w?

Thank you.
Are you making a music only system?

The thing about amp ratings is that they are usually rated at 8ohms while the Mozarts are only 4Ohms.

You want a preamp with a DAC?

Personally I was very tempted by the Cyclops but I want/would like HT bypass.

The separates route is really for people who enjoy mixing&matching or incremental upgrades. If it's a one&done then the integrated amp makes a lot of sense.

One of the highest rated integrateds with DAC out there is the Hegel. Have you considered that? No personal experience but everyone raves about it.
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Are you making a music only system?

The thing about amp ratings is that they are usually rated at 8ohms while the Mozarts are only 4Ohms.

You want a preamp with a DAC?

Personally I was very tempted by the Cyclops but I want/would like HT bypass.

The separates route is really for people who enjoy mixing&matching or incremental upgrades. If it's a one&done then the integrated amp makes a lot of sense.

One of the highest rated integrateds with DAC out there is the Hegel. Have you considered that? No personal experience but everyone raves about it.
Im Just looking for a 2.1 music system.

If the amp is rated at 8ohms doesn't that mean it would deliver more power into a 4ohm speaker? I assumed this is the case since there is less resistance.

I would prefer a preamp with a DAC. I haven't really seen many. Parasound A5 is the only one that looks ok.

Does cylops have a DAC? I have not heard of Hagel. Ill take a look. What about other amps and integrated I listed above?
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post #3042 of 3049 Old 07-05-2014, 07:48 PM
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Im Just looking for a 2.1 music system.

If the amp is rated at 8ohms doesn't that mean it would deliver more power into a 4ohm speaker? I assumed this is the case since there is less resistance.
It depends on how the amp is engineered. Some amps I've checked the specs on are rated something like 100W@8Ohms and 150W@4ohms. Other amps (more expensive) are rated 100W@8ohms and 200W@4ohms. These latter amps can deal better with speakers like the Mozart that has relatively wide swings in impedance. Other speakers don't have such large impedance changes so it doesn't matter much.

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I would prefer a preamp with a DAC. I haven't really seen many. Parasound A5 is the only one that looks ok.

Does cylops have a DAC? I have not heard of Hagel. Ill take a look. What about other amps and integrated I listed above?
The cyclops does not have a DAC, IIRC. BTW, it's Hegel not Hagel (so your googling works). IIRC, they are a Norwegian company.

All of them are excellent choices from what I read but I don't have any personal experience. None have DACs, tho, IIRC. Some of them are on the old side, tho, like the Mark Levinsons?

Are you expecting the preamp to perform crossover functions? That limits choices quite a bit. The alternative is to use the crossover in the subwoofer (aka high level inputs). When I was experimenting with that previously I preferred the sound that way but didn't like not having any control over the crossover setting.

RE: Separates vs integrated. It's really mostly personal preference and if you intend to keep swapping things in and out separates works better for that.

I got separates because I knew I was going to be mixing and matching to get the sound I wanted. Unfortunately, it's a great deal more expensive to go that way. Problem is my system is mixed music & movies so I need to be able to upgrade because of the darn "evolution" of movie sound encoding schemes.

Anyway, have you seen this list ?


The above list has the Hegel 300 which is a bit budget busting but the H80 or H100 might work. Here's a review of the H80. No personal experience but I've never seen anything but raves for the Hegels.

Another line, for amps, that was interesting to me was Red Dragon Audio. The prices are good and the reviews are good. If you like the looks they also run very cool because they are Class D amps. Still, no personal experience.

If it were me, with what I know now, I'd try to get the best preamp in my budget. There's less effect from the amp if it's a good amp. Not that I know what that preamp would be. Though aesthetically and for ease of use, the simplest processors I've tried out (not preamps because of the movie thing) were some older Primare and Bryston. But they don't have all the features that many want.

There are way too many choices out there.
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It depends on how the amp is engineered. Some amps I've checked the specs on are rated something like 100W@8Ohms and 150W@4ohms. Other amps (more expensive) are rated 100W@8ohms and 200W@4ohms. These latter amps can deal better with speakers like the Mozart that has relatively wide swings in impedance. Other speakers don't have such large impedance changes so it doesn't matter much.


The cyclops does not have a DAC, IIRC. BTW, it's Hegel not Hagel (so your googling works). IIRC, they are a Norwegian company.

All of them are excellent choices from what I read but I don't have any personal experience. None have DACs, tho, IIRC. Some of them are on the old side, tho, like the Mark Levinsons?

Are you expecting the preamp to perform crossover functions? That limits choices quite a bit. The alternative is to use the crossover in the subwoofer (aka high level inputs). When I was experimenting with that previously I preferred the sound that way but didn't like not having any control over the crossover setting.

RE: Separates vs integrated. It's really mostly personal preference and if you intend to keep swapping things in and out separates works better for that.

I got separates because I knew I was going to be mixing and matching to get the sound I wanted. Unfortunately, it's a great deal more expensive to go that way. Problem is my system is mixed music & movies so I need to be able to upgrade because of the darn "evolution" of movie sound encoding schemes.

Anyway, have you seen this list ?


The above list has the Hegel 300 which is a bit budget busting but the H80 or H100 might work. Here's a review of the H80. No personal experience but I've never seen anything but raves for the Hegels.

Another line, for amps, that was interesting to me was Red Dragon Audio. The prices are good and the reviews are good. If you like the looks they also run very cool because they are Class D amps. Still, no personal experience.

If it were me, with what I know now, I'd try to get the best preamp in my budget. There's less effect from the amp if it's a good amp. Not that I know what that preamp would be. Though aesthetically and for ease of use, the simplest processors I've tried out (not preamps because of the movie thing) were some older Primare and Bryston. But they don't have all the features that many want.

There are way too many choices out there.
Agreed, too many choices indeed.

I think it's gonna be easier for me to get an integrated after all. Thanks for the list, Ill need to research some more.

Looking at specs alone, do you think there is a big difference in sound of krell S300i vs. s500i? If you had my speakers which are rated to 4ohms and 200w which will mostly be used to classical music. Which one would you choose?
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post #3044 of 3049 Old 07-06-2014, 09:47 AM
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Agreed, too many choices indeed.

I think it's gonna be easier for me to get an integrated after all. Thanks for the list, Ill need to research some more.

Looking at specs alone, do you think there is a big difference in sound of krell S300i vs. s500i? If you had my speakers which are rated to 4ohms and 200w which will mostly be used to classical music. Which one would you choose?
Krell's very conservative in their power ratings so I imagine the 300 has plenty of power.

Now, a lot of people don't like the Krell sound. If you can give the units a listen that's your best bet.

Would you use the iPod dock on it? That's a nice feature.
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post #3045 of 3049 Old 07-15-2014, 08:26 PM
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Krell's very conservative in their power ratings so I imagine the 300 has plenty of power.

Now, a lot of people don't like the Krell sound. If you can give the units a listen that's your best bet.

Would you use the iPod dock on it? That's a nice feature.
After much research decided on an integrated and bought a used mcintosh ma6600.

If I wanted to add a sub, how would I do it? Do I need a separate amp?
Also, in terms of a power line, can I just hook it up to the wall outlet or do I need something special?

Also, can anyone recommend good but reasonably priced speaker wires and RCA cables? I don't want to spend more than 200-300 on wires.
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post #3046 of 3049 Old 07-15-2014, 08:53 PM
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After much research decided on an integrated and bought a used mcintosh ma6600.

If I wanted to add a sub, how would I do it? Do I need a separate amp?
Also, in terms of a power line, can I just hook it up to the wall outlet or do I need something special?
Most subs come with an amp; these plate amps are built into the sub. Only passive subs require external amplification. So no worries there.

That McIntosh doesn't have bass management. Assuming the most common case, you'd either run the RCA connects from your stereo outs to the subwoofer or run the speaker wires from the McIntosh to the speaker inputs on the sub then the speaker out to the speakers.

That being said, for music, it's difficult to get a sub to blend well. In your position, I wouldn't rush out to get one as the Mozarts have very nice bass.
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Also, can anyone recommend good but reasonably priced speaker wires and RCA cables? I don't want to spend more than 200-300 on wires.
I usually get what I need from Monoprice but I do admit that the Audioquest brand is better constructed.
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post #3047 of 3049 Old 07-15-2014, 08:57 PM
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Also, in terms of a power line, can I just hook it up to the wall outlet or do I need something special?
Many people think it's best to hook it up to the outlet to maximum the current into the amp. My POV is I'd be sad if lightning took out my system so I go through surge protectors.
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post #3048 of 3049 Old 07-16-2014, 07:19 AM
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Most subs come with an amp; these plate amps are built into the sub. Only passive subs require external amplification. So no worries there.

That McIntosh doesn't have bass management. Assuming the most common case, you'd either run the RCA connects from your stereo outs to the subwoofer or run the speaker wires from the McIntosh to the speaker inputs on the sub then the speaker out to the speakers.

That being said, for music, it's difficult to get a sub to blend well. In your position, I wouldn't rush out to get one as the Mozarts have very nice bass.


I usually get what I need from Monoprice but I do admit that the Audioquest brand is better constructed.
I've read about 50% of this forum and found that most people who use a sub recommend REL subs. I'm not sure if those are powered or if they need an amp. They're described as sub bass LFE?
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post #3049 of 3049 Old 07-16-2014, 07:52 AM
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I've read about 50% of this forum and found that most people who use a sub recommend REL subs. I'm not sure if those are powered or if they need an amp. They're described as sub bass LFE?
The Rel subs have built in amplifiers.I use the Rel R-328 with my Mozart Grand Se's.The Mozarts have very nice bass all on their own but do benefit from having a nice/fast sub playing with them.You can hardly tell that my sub is on but if you take it out of the system the speakers shrink.The sub makes the Mozarts sound better.The Rel should be connected using high level to the same outputs the speakers are connected to,this is the ideal way of connecting a Rel in a two channel setup.A little tricky in placement and setup but once dialed in the sound is sublime.
Nice choice with the McIntosh.I auditioned the Krell S300i and found it to sound a little veiled.I ended up getting the Arcam FMJ A38 and found it to sound much better for my tastes.It's not as powerful as the Krell but still gets the job done with great results.

Arcam Fmj A38,Arcam Fmj CD17, Arcam rDac kw,Vienna Acoustics Mozart Grand Se,Rel R-328,Cardas Golden Presence and Crosslink ic's,Kimber 4tc,VH Audio power cords,Shunyata Venom PS8 & Defender & HC power cord, Furutech wall outlets.
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