I bought a 220 amp from Best Buy recently since the deal was too good not to try. I get it home, and out of the box was already smitten by how handsome it was. On top of that, the shallow design was easier to integrate into my media cabinet than have been other amps in the past. I set the amp up in place of my Marantz mono blocks, feeding power to a couple B&W 683s by way of a Pioneer AVR.
Initial impressions were that the top end was WAY sweeter than my Marantz amps, and certainly better than the onboard Pioneer amps. The bottom, while there, seemed to be a bit too laid back, and dare I say even clippy when pushed? There was certainly something strange going on.
But then, I heard it. Vocals really only coming from the left speaker. When I got up close, I conformed that the right speaker was indeed getting power, but it sure did sound a lot quieter than the left. I grabbed the mic for the pioneer room correction and ran a calibration. Sure enough, a 5.5db difference between the right and left channels!? That's huge!
I promptly returned the amp, and am somewhat disappointed that this is my first experience with this company. What I heard in my room could have been good, but wow, 5.5 db. To put it in perspective, my MA-700 mono blocks have different manufacturing dates, cost half as much (maybe about equal when new) and are within 1 db of each other, as two separate units....and THAT may just be due to room anomalies or speaker placement.
I really wanted to like the 220. Should I give (a different one obviously) it another shot?