Originally Posted by kbarnes701
Properly designed, modern Solid State amps (which includes all of the amps we are discussing in this thread), working within their design parameters and not driven into clipping, have been proven numerous times, in properly conducted blind ABX tests, to be sonically indistinguishable from one another.
If there is any published research on this topic, I would love to read it. I could easily have believed what you are saying to be true a month ago, but given what I heard recently, and again I claim no real expertise, I now find it very hard to believe. Plus, even if true, I suspect there would be so much sound-shaping required to make the XPA-5 sound like the Luxman that it wouldn't really be practical. I don't own an old-style equalizer and typically defeat any tone controls. What matters most is how music sounds in your space when you turn the contraptions on, right?
Still hope the folks at Emotiva find that something was wrong with the amplifier, they promised to bench-test it when it comes back in. They are super nice and one thing I can say is that you can buy from them with confidence that you will have a fair opportunity to listen and decide for yourself. The return process was super easy, and I will still consider their stuff. I currently am using a USP-1 and really like it, even the MM phono stage.
Another feature I like about Emotiva is the pretty-much troll-free forum they have put together.