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post #1 of 23 Old 08-04-2014, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Cheap as possible 2 channel amp that is still good.

Hi,

I am wondering about replacing my onkyo receiver (605) with a cheap but good amp due to the onkyo getting really hot around the HDMI board, thus giving out an unpleasant smell of hot electronics.
Other than seeing if it would work at all without the HDMI board plugged in, I think a replacement is needed.

I want a 2 channel amp due to the fact I only have 2 speakers, the speakers are going to be connected up to a PC (and a Intel NUC doing DRC) thus I do not really need anything else that a AV receiver does.

I have been looking at the Emotiva mini-x a-100, but I am afraid of reliability due to the shipping costs of sending a faulty one back (from AUS).
Does anyone have input on this?

I am also looking at the Cambridge Audio TOPAZ AM10 and the Pioneer A10 (but I think both of them will end up at a higher price than the Emotiva).

I don't want anything like a class T amp due to their problems with frequency response changing based on the speaker impedance (but if there is something like a good Hypex class D based amp in $200-$399 price range I would not say no to it).

I am also willing to buy used but I have no idea what is good.

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."
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post #2 of 23 Old 08-04-2014, 08:53 PM
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You could try mounting some CPU cooling fans to dissipate the heat. FWIW, Emotiva makes reliable gear. Perhaps you should contact them regarding shipping.

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post #3 of 23 Old 08-04-2014, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by postrokfan View Post
You could try mounting some CPU cooling fans to dissipate the heat. FWIW, Emotiva makes reliable gear. Perhaps you should contact them regarding shipping.
I thought of putting some cooling fans on it, but I do not have a spare 12V PSU to run them and even then, I have read a few reports of the 605 giving up the ghost anyway (and I am not sure it will stop an other problem of humming that an inductor starts to do after a while).

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."
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post #4 of 23 Old 08-04-2014, 10:05 PM
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Crown x1000 for $99 at musicians friend on closeout.

You won't best that period.

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post #5 of 23 Old 08-04-2014, 10:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
Crown x1000 for $99 at musicians friend on closeout.

You won't best that period.
Won't ship to Aus (and even if they did, it is 120v only).

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."
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post #6 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 03:56 AM
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Originally Posted by TheD View Post
Won't ship to Aus (and even if they did, it is 120v only).
Does amazon ship to Australia? Also, what kind of audio outputs are you using? If you can use xlr or trs then maybe consider something like a behringer nu1000.
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post #7 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 04:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cmryan821 View Post
Does amazon ship to Australia? Also, what kind of audio outputs are you using? If you can use xlr or trs then maybe consider something like a behringer nu1000.
Yes (depending on the product and seller), but the iNuke frequency response is load dependent (something I really want to avoid) and its fans can get loud, so I am going to steer clear of it.

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."
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post #8 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheD View Post
Yes (depending on the product and seller), but the iNuke frequency response is load dependent (something I really want to avoid) and its fans can get loud, so I am going to steer clear of it.

Fan noise I understand. It doesn't bother me personally, but I also have it in an adjacent room. I'm not quite sure I understand what you mean by the frequency response being load dependent. I have read that it may not supply full power below 20hz into a 4 ohm load with both channels bridged. Is that what you meant?
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post #9 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 01:04 PM
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I just received the 2nd generation of the Emotiva miniX a-100 and am happy with it thus far. I have an MS Surface Pro with a Geekout as my source and DAC. Sounds excellent
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post #10 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmryan821 View Post
Fan noise I understand. It doesn't bother me personally, but I also have it in an adjacent room. I'm not quite sure I understand what you mean by the frequency response being load dependent. I have read that it may not supply full power below 20hz into a 4 ohm load with both channels bridged. Is that what you meant?
It is a class D amp that takes feedback before the output filter, thus requiring it to have high output impedance and due to speakers being a reactive load that have different resistance at different frequencies it can cause quite large frequency response variation depending on the speaker.

http://forum.speakerplans.com/behrin...202_page2.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by mlknez View Post
I just received the 2nd generation of the Emotiva miniX a-100 and am happy with it thus far. I have an MS Surface Pro with a Geekout as my source and DAC. Sounds excellent
Nice, how hot does it run and is the fan on all the time or only when it is pushed?

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post #11 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 04:03 PM
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I have not heard the fan on the Emotiva yet after 2 days of use.
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post #12 of 23 Old 08-05-2014, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
Crown x1000 for $99 at musicians friend on closeout.

You won't best that period.
guitar center also has this at the same price.
http://www.guitarcenter.com/CROWN-X1...53-i2670626.gc

I'm buying one just to try with my Denon AVR. I want see if all this extra power really makes a difference and sounds cleaner. They said it runs silent too.

Curiosity is getting the best of me so I have to test it.

Afro GT
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post #13 of 23 Old 08-06-2014, 04:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by afrogt View Post
guitar center also has this at the same price.
http://www.guitarcenter.com/CROWN-X1...53-i2670626.gc

I'm buying one just to try with my Denon AVR. I want see if all this extra power really makes a difference and sounds cleaner. They said it runs silent too.

Curiosity is getting the best of me so I have to test it.
I too am curious. Would this be a suitable amp for 11.x setup to drive the additional 2 channels with the 9.2 receiver (ay Onkyo 929)? (Sorry for the dumb question)
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post #14 of 23 Old 08-06-2014, 04:48 AM
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If your source is a PC, a AVR still makes a good choice.

Digital out from PC (either coaxial, optical or HDMI)
AVR has digital inputs, and HDMI switching.

I went from a stereo pre-amp on the PC system to a AVR, it just makes it easier. Course you could add an external DAC to stereo integrated, or get a integrated amp with built in DAC.

For close audio monitor use a Yamaha 3xx series would be plenty. I'm using a Yamaha 671. Route two computers and two consoles through the Yamaha

In fact before that I had three boxes LOL. Arcam amp, Lexicon MC-1 and Yamaha Pro-Logic amp with 5.1 input. That was just too stupidly complex for a PC system.

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post #15 of 23 Old 08-06-2014, 05:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by fatbottom View Post
If your source is a PC, a AVR still makes a good choice.

Digital out from PC (either coaxial, optical or HDMI)
AVR has digital inputs, and HDMI switching.

I went from a stereo pre-amp on the PC system to a AVR, it just makes it easier. Course you could add an external DAC to stereo integrated, or get a integrated amp with built in DAC.

For close audio monitor use a Yamaha 3xx series would be plenty. I'm using a Yamaha 671. Route two computers and two consoles through the Yamaha

In fact before that I had three boxes LOL. Arcam amp, Lexicon MC-1 and Yamaha Pro-Logic amp with 5.1 input. That was just too stupidly complex for a PC system.
As I said, I am going to use an Intel NUC (in fact an Asus Chromebox, but close enough) for DRC (and volume control), thus I have no need for an AVR.

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."

Last edited by TheD; 08-06-2014 at 05:34 AM.
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post #16 of 23 Old 08-06-2014, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaranddeeman View Post
I too am curious. Would this be a suitable amp for 11.x setup to drive the additional 2 channels with the 9.2 receiver (ay Onkyo 929)? (Sorry for the dumb question)
My guess is this amp is actually more powerful than your 989 front channels. Crown is rated 200W x 2 at 8 ohms, 300W x 2 at 4 ohms.

So yes, it would be more than suitable.

Afro GT
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post #17 of 23 Old 08-06-2014, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by afrogt View Post
My guess is this amp is actually more powerful than your 989 front channels. Crown is rated 200W x 2 at 8 ohms, 300W x 2 at 4 ohms.

So yes, it would be more than suitable.
Yup. Power-wise it "sounds" good. Looked at the back panel and I guess you can use either balanced or unbalanced input.
Just looking for general experience in HT setup because all the reviews are mostly the music folks, none I could find that used it in HT setup. Hence was taking the judgement..
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post #18 of 23 Old 08-09-2014, 09:00 AM
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TheD have a look at the NAD D3020, Hypex based. Or the NAD 316Bee.
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...fier-with-aptx
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...ated-amplifier


Or Cambridge Audio
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...dge-audio-am10


Or look for something similar used. Most solid 2 channel amps last a long time.


The problems you raise with Tripath seem more theoretical than audible, you might consider trying one. You could likely resell it.
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post #19 of 23 Old 08-10-2014, 07:40 AM - Thread Starter
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TheD have a look at the NAD D3020, Hypex based. Or the NAD 316Bee.
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...fier-with-aptx
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...ated-amplifier


Or Cambridge Audio
http://www.addictedtoaudio.com.au/pr...dge-audio-am10


Or look for something similar used. Most solid 2 channel amps last a long time.


The problems you raise with Tripath seem more theoretical than audible, you might consider trying one. You could likely resell it.
The NAD D3020 is out of my price range, the 316Bee does not look bad though.

Not really sure on CA anymore.

I am also starting to feel that if I am DIYing my speakers I might as well DIY my amp (a Icepower 50watt @ 4 ohm based power amp kit can be had for just over $200).

In regards to the Tripath: http://www.audioheuristics.org/markk_wp/?p=201

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post #20 of 23 Old 08-10-2014, 07:46 AM
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The Crown x1000 will do the trick. way more powerful than the DIY amp kit for $99. Plus you get a 3 year warranty.

I connected it to my Denon 989 and it sounds fine. Very quiet too.

Afro GT
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post #21 of 23 Old 08-10-2014, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by afrogt View Post
The Crown x1000 will do the trick. way more powerful than the DIY amp kit for $99. Plus you get a 3 year warranty.

I connected it to my Denon 989 and it sounds fine. Very quiet too.
Suggested earlier in the thread. He cannot get them shipped to Australia.
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post #22 of 23 Old 08-11-2014, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheD View Post
The NAD D3020 is out of my price range, the 316Bee does not look bad though.

Not really sure on CA anymore.

I am also starting to feel that if I am DIYing my speakers I might as well DIY my amp (a Icepower 50watt @ 4 ohm based power amp kit can be had for just over $200).

In regards to the Tripath: http://www.audioheuristics.org/markk_wp/?p=201
I'm going to pass on commenting on your post, other than to say that the Icepower 50ASX2-based amps do sound nice and are versatile.

Two other options I'd forgotten about:

AudioEngine N22
http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?...5965&cPath=571
http://audioengineusa.com/resellers/Australia


Yamaha RS201
http://www.todds.com.au/p/yamaha-ste...s201/YA-RS201B
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post #23 of 23 Old 08-21-2014, 09:15 PM - Thread Starter
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I have come across a bit more money to spend, so I think I could afford a NAD D3020.
What I want to know though is what happens to the other audio inputs (like SPDIF) when it is connected to a PC. Do they get exposed to the computer as inputs (like a USB soundcard) or not?

If they do it would save me from having to spend on a USB soundcard to take SPDIF input from my PC.

"Although it is fully understood scientifically, the phenomenon of "gullibility" has been experienced by many audiophiles."
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