Originally Posted by Prosoft7
Here is my comments after the audition:
Finally I completed my little comparative listening sessions involving Integra 80.2 and Krell Foundation. This was 2 days of work for me. It is far from easy! There is a reason why we so many of us eagerly read various feedback from others and then factor in those observations in our decision making process… but nevertheless, even though I do respect all the specs info and exciting R&D related stories of various brands, but like many others, I believe there is no substitute to actual critical listening by the end user for evaluating and rating a product.
My observation (where Krell shines):
1.Sean Hayes (Lucky Man) Bob Dylan (Masters of War) and Eric Clapton (U Look Beautiful Tonight) - the voice was much more pronounced and clearer, separation of instruments was significantly distinctive.
2.Documentary “The Planet Earth” - the sound of wind blowing in the vast plain and the subtle sound of the Eagle’s wings flapping in the sky was much pronounced and readily identifiable with Krell. The environment seemed more realistic. I felt an increased sense of being present at the scene myself.
3.Flight of the Phoenix – I clearly felt the air pressure around my legs while the plane was going down in the desert storm! The sense was uncanny!
4.Adele/Yanni – the overall sound was quite powerful and it seemed to me to be crispier and sharper, and very importantly, the bass blended with the other higher frequencies very well, commendably well! This factor clearly had a significant contribution to the pleasure of listening to the concerts.
The overall assessment:
Krell to my ear, sounded significantly cleaner and separation of instruments was amazing! The bass integration was unmistakably much better (the option of being able to run the ARC below 250Hz or 125Hz might be a contributing factor?). I also like the ability of Krell to let me increase or decrease the volume of individual speakers, this might prove to be quite useful in certain cases. Last, but not the least – the amazing distinctiveness of various listening modes (Orchestra/Mezzanine/Party) seemed quite impressive to me. I might not like some modes, but that shows me how much better some other modes are!
Now the final “mother of all questions” – is it worth paying nearly 3 times the price of Integra 80.2 or almost twice the price of Marantz av8801? That depends on the perceived value of an individual buyer and this perceived value, in turn, might depend on the combined factors of the purchasing-power-adjusted cost for the buyer to acquire the Krell Foundation and, the specific priorities of that particular individual (for example - quality of audio VS more options & ease of operation, also higher price VS brand image in the market, excellent performance mainly for HT or primarily for Music or in average, quite good for both, et Cetera et Cetera).
If you ask me, I would say (with a smile), wrong question – I have already bought it mate! And happy...
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