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post #1 of 11 Old 01-23-2020, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Outlaw 7220 and (new) Monolith 7x200 the same?

Hi there, forgive my ignorance. I tried searching for this but to my knowledge, this question wasn't answered.

I'm looking at the Outlaw 7220 and the Monolith 7x200 (with XLR inputs). As I'm looking at these, they seem like very similar, if not the same power amp.

It looks like the Outlaw 7220 is fully differential, but the Monolith 7x200 isn't?

I guess, I'm wondering if there are any noticeable differences between the two, or why someone would pay $1200 for the Outlaw vs the Monolith. I've heard the Outlaw is amazing, but is it really $1200 better than the Monolith?
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post #2 of 11 Old 01-23-2020, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by bishop27 View Post
Hi there, forgive my ignorance. I tried searching for this but to my knowledge, this question wasn't answered.

I'm looking at the Outlaw 7220 and the Monolith 7x200 (with XLR inputs). As I'm looking at these, they seem like very similar, if not the same power amp.

It looks like the Outlaw 7220 is fully differential, but the Monolith 7x200 isn't?

I guess, I'm wondering if there are any noticeable differences between the two, or why someone would pay $1200 for the Outlaw vs the Monolith. I've heard the Outlaw is amazing, but is it really $1200 better than the Monolith?
Here's my best guess:


Making a fully differential amp is very expensive. This ensures a very low noise floor, but you do need to have a pre-amp that can accept the fully balanced signal as well.

And then you have these primary factors: build quality, aesthetics, heat dissipation performance, and brand. In this case, the brands are comparable, as both are internet direct and actually made by ATI, probably in the same factory.



I think this particular Outlaw model is from ATI's premium lineup, whereas the rebadged Monoprice is quite price competitive thanks to economies of scale, and Monoprice's buying power.


And then the small details, that people will pay thousands, sometimes then of thousands extra for: i.e. "operates virtually no DC offset, runs cooler, and still maintains a class AB operation with two robust toroidal transformers." Then you have people who are open to paying tens of thousands more for aesthetics and brand, i.e. McIntosh.

Neither of which translates to performance, but you might get better customer and product support long term, and bragging rights!

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post #3 of 11 Old 01-23-2020, 09:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by nonametofame View Post
Here's my best guess:


Making a fully differential amp is very expensive. This ensures a very low noise floor, but you do need to have a pre-amp that can accept the fully balanced signal as well.

And then you have these primary factors: build quality, aesthetics, heat dissipation performance, and brand. In this case, the brands are comparable, as both are internet direct and actually made by ATI, probably in the same factory.



I think this particular Outlaw model is from ATI's premium lineup, whereas the rebadged Monoprice is quite price competitive thanks to economies of scale, and Monoprice's buying power.


And then the small details, that people will pay thousands, sometimes then of thousands extra for: i.e. "operates virtually no DC offset, runs cooler, and still maintains a class AB operation with two robust toroidal transformers." Then you have people who are open to paying tens of thousands more for aesthetics and brand, i.e. McIntosh.

Neither of which translates to performance, but you might get better customer and product support long term, and bragging rights!

Wow, thanks for the informative reply! Makes a lot of sense. It sounds like the big difference is, in fact, the "fully differential" aspect of the Outlaw vs the Monolith.

Does "fully differential" really make a big difference?

Also, what should I look for in a pre-amp so that I know it can accept a fully balanced signal? I was looking at the new Yamaha CX-a5200 as it seems fairly well received, but not sure how to check to make sure I can get the most out of the amp.
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post #4 of 11 Old 01-24-2020, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by bishop27 View Post
Wow, thanks for the informative reply! Makes a lot of sense. It sounds like the big difference is, in fact, the "fully differential" aspect of the Outlaw vs the Monolith.

Does "fully differential" really make a big difference?

Also, what should I look for in a pre-amp so that I know it can accept a fully balanced signal? I was looking at the new Yamaha CX-a5200 as it seems fairly well received, but not sure how to check to make sure I can get the most out of the amp.

That Yamaha looks very nice, but I don't have any experiences with it. The brand is super reliable though, and a great bang for the buck. It has the XLR inputs, but are not fully differential. That still means you get a low noise floor, just not as good if the signal is "fully balanced form end to end," meaning both the pre-pro and the amp are fully differential. It translates into a lower noise floor, which can be really significant for a setup, but not noticeable in another. Factors like speaker senstivity, length of cables, noise in your power outlets, and susceptibility to ground hum can affect the noise floor.



I don't think it's extremely important for most setups, and you need spend quite a bit to get that on some units. The cheapest I believe are the Emotivas, starting with the $3k XMC 2. I believe the Monoprice HTP-1 has it as well. To me, room correction is one of the most important factors in a pre-pro. That's why you see lots of fans of the Anthem (it uses an in-house correction called ARC) and Arcam and NAD pre-pros (which use Dirac). These tools are arguably much more robust and advanced than Yamaha's YPAO and Denon/Marantz's Audyssey. It can make a big difference depending on your room. I hope that helps.

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post #5 of 11 Old 01-24-2020, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by nonametofame View Post
To me, room correction is one of the most important factors in a pre-pro. That's why you see lots of fans of the Anthem (it uses an in-house correction called ARC) and Arcam and NAD pre-pros (which use Dirac). These tools are arguably much more robust and advanced than Yamaha's YPAO and Denon/Marantz's Audyssey. It can make a big difference depending on your room. I hope that helps.
I was just thinking about room correction brands. Is Dirac MUCH better than Auddessy?
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post #6 of 11 Old 01-27-2020, 10:28 AM
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I was just thinking about room correction brands. Is Dirac MUCH better than Auddessy?

It really depends on your room, but for most, I would say yes. It's much more robust, allows you to use a better mic, and has a better layout for adjusting a house curve, that better suit your tastes. At last in my setup, in comparison to Audyssey, the surround sound effect is much more detailed, cohesive, balanced, and spacious. It fills in the space and gaps between all your speakers, and there's a exquisite seamlessness I never experienced before in a home theatre environment.

It essentially help your speakers perform closest to its potential in YOUR specific listening environment.
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post #7 of 11 Old 01-27-2020, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by nonametofame View Post
It really depends on your room, but for most, I would say yes. It's much more robust, allows you to use a better mic, and has a better layout for adjusting a house curve, that better suit your tastes. At last in my setup, in comparison to Audyssey, the surround sound effect is much more detailed, cohesive, balanced, and spacious. It fills in the space and gaps between all your speakers, and there's a exquisite seamlessness I never experienced before in a home theatre environment.

It essentially help your speakers perform closest to its potential in YOUR specific listening environment.
Thank you so much for the detailed reply. This sounds fantastic. Audessy has done a wonderful improvement for my room from the default of no Audessy. But I know that there is lots of room for improvement. I just set up my 5.1 Klipsch Reference Premiere Home theater set up and it sounds good but I can pull more out of this setup.

You never know what you're missing until you hear the difference.

As such I've heard the biggest thing that you can do once you get your speakers set up and tuned is to do a room treatment so I'm going to be treating my room. Thereafter I'm going to look into getting Dirac for a more fine-tuned system in my room.

Initially, I thought spending more money and getting a power amplifier would boost and enhance the sound quality of my HT system but after getting more wisdom, I learned that it's about treating your room which is one of the biggest factors in perceived sound quality. And then also tuning the sound to the room using a robust room correction software like dirac.

These I feel will make the greatest impact on sound quality. That is assuming proper speaker placement has been done.
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post #8 of 11 Old 01-27-2020, 11:59 AM
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You're very welcome. And I agree with everything you mentioned in your last post. You definitely got it!
Ideally, if you have a perfect room, with perfect speaker placement and room treatment, room correction doesn't have to do much at all. It provides some additional tools to fine tune your set up. But it doesn't replace treating your room, you will notice a huge leap in sound quality, and satisfaction.

It's not as glamorous, and it takes much more time and research to do proper room treatment, but it can end up being a lot cheaper than purchasing amplifiers that don't fix the issues in the room. Good luck!
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post #9 of 11 Old 01-27-2020, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by bishop27 View Post
Hi there, forgive my ignorance. I tried searching for this but to my knowledge, this question wasn't answered.

I'm looking at the Outlaw 7220 and the Monolith 7x200 (with XLR inputs). As I'm looking at these, they seem like very similar, if not the same power amp.

It looks like the Outlaw 7220 is fully differential, but the Monolith 7x200 isn't?

I guess, I'm wondering if there are any noticeable differences between the two, or why someone would pay $1200 for the Outlaw vs the Monolith. I've heard the Outlaw is amazing, but is it really $1200 better than the Monolith?

IMO, it frankly is difficult to justify paying any more for the 7220. The designs of the two power amplifiers are very different.

The 7220 is cooled by fans instead of passively. While fans have improved since they have been refined in PC's, it makes little sense IMO to use two mechanical fans in a full size power amplifier meant for residential applications. Power amplifiers, that usually have no moving parts, can last for decades, but fans likely won't. When a fan fails, the amplifier needs to be repaired. The fans also will suck dust into the amplifier which inhibits cooling. It is difficult to see the benefit for the owner.

The 7220 is a bridged design with two amplifiers for each channel. One amp for the (+) and one amp for the (-). These two amplifiers are driven out of phase so voltage is increased, but the ability to deliver current is not increased, and it is usually current that is in short supply. Each amplifier sees one-half the impedance, 4 ohms driving 8 ohm speakers and 2 ohms driving 4 ohm speakers. Amplifiers don't like low impedances. Normally it means higher distortion, including crossover distortion. A bridged design would be good to drive high impedance speakers, 8 ohms and higher over the audio range. Such speakers are almost non-existent. There is a lot more demand to drive speakers close to 4 ohms.

The Monolith amplifier is a Class AB amplifier, of traditional design, based on ATI designs that have been refined over many years. Measurements of the Monoliths are available on Monoprice's site and also on sites such as Audioholics. The amplifier measures well and appears to be the typical ATI solid design. It will drive 4 ohms speakers all day long and doesn't have fans to replace or make noise overtime.

There are small differences that likely make a difference overall. The two amplifiers have about the same capacitance in their power supplies. The 7220 uses two capacitors, the Monolith unit, four capacitors, with pairs in parallel. Putting capacitors in parallel cuts the equivalent series resistance and inductance of the capacitor bank in half, which is good. Resistance and inductance in capacitors in undesirable. The lower the better.

Similarly there are multiple, parallel resistors connected to the emitter of each output transistor in the Monolith unit, there appears to be one resistor per transistor in the 7720. The effective resistance is likely the same, but parallel resistors likely will have lower inductance and a larger surface for cooling.
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post #10 of 11 Old 01-31-2020, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post
IMO, it frankly is difficult to justify paying any more for the 7220. The designs of the two power amplifiers are very different.

The 7220 is cooled by fans instead of passively. While fans have improved since they have been refined in PC's, it makes little sense IMO to use two mechanical fans in a full size power amplifier meant for residential applications. Power amplifiers, that usually have no moving parts, can last for decades, but fans likely won't. When a fan fails, the amplifier needs to be repaired. The fans also will suck dust into the amplifier which inhibits cooling. It is difficult to see the benefit for the owner.

The 7220 is a bridged design with two amplifiers for each channel. One amp for the (+) and one amp for the (-). These two amplifiers are driven out of phase so voltage is increased, but the ability to deliver current is not increased, and it is usually current that is in short supply. Each amplifier sees one-half the impedance, 4 ohms driving 8 ohm speakers and 2 ohms driving 4 ohm speakers. Amplifiers don't like low impedances. Normally it means higher distortion, including crossover distortion. A bridged design would be good to drive high impedance speakers, 8 ohms and higher over the audio range. Such speakers are almost non-existent. There is a lot more demand to drive speakers close to 4 ohms.

The Monolith amplifier is a Class AB amplifier, of traditional design, based on ATI designs that have been refined over many years. Measurements of the Monoliths are available on Monoprice's site and also on sites such as Audioholics. The amplifier measures well and appears to be the typical ATI solid design. It will drive 4 ohms speakers all day long and doesn't have fans to replace or make noise overtime.

There are small differences that likely make a difference overall. The two amplifiers have about the same capacitance in their power supplies. The 7220 uses two capacitors, the Monolith unit, four capacitors, with pairs in parallel. Putting capacitors in parallel cuts the equivalent series resistance and inductance of the capacitor bank in half, which is good. Resistance and inductance in capacitors in undesirable. The lower the better.

Similarly there are multiple, parallel resistors connected to the emitter of each output transistor in the Monolith unit, there appears to be one resistor per transistor in the 7720. The effective resistance is likely the same, but parallel resistors likely will have lower inductance and a larger surface for cooling.
Do you still hold the same opinion that it's not worth getting the Outlaw 7220 over the Monolith?


Thanks
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post #11 of 11 Old 02-01-2020, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post
IMO, it frankly is difficult to justify paying any more for the 7220. The designs of the two power amplifiers are very different.

The 7220 is cooled by fans instead of passively. While fans have improved since they have been refined in PC's, it makes little sense IMO to use two mechanical fans in a full size power amplifier meant for residential applications. Power amplifiers, that usually have no moving parts, can last for decades, but fans likely won't. When a fan fails, the amplifier needs to be repaired. The fans also will suck dust into the amplifier which inhibits cooling. It is difficult to see the benefit for the owner.

The 7220 is a bridged design with two amplifiers for each channel. One amp for the (+) and one amp for the (-). These two amplifiers are driven out of phase so voltage is increased, but the ability to deliver current is not increased, and it is usually current that is in short supply. Each amplifier sees one-half the impedance, 4 ohms driving 8 ohm speakers and 2 ohms driving 4 ohm speakers. Amplifiers don't like low impedances. Normally it means higher distortion, including crossover distortion. A bridged design would be good to drive high impedance speakers, 8 ohms and higher over the audio range. Such speakers are almost non-existent. There is a lot more demand to drive speakers close to 4 ohms.

The Monolith amplifier is a Class AB amplifier, of traditional design, based on ATI designs that have been refined over many years. Measurements of the Monoliths are available on Monoprice's site and also on sites such as Audioholics. The amplifier measures well and appears to be the typical ATI solid design. It will drive 4 ohms speakers all day long and doesn't have fans to replace or make noise overtime.

There are small differences that likely make a difference overall. The two amplifiers have about the same capacitance in their power supplies. The 7220 uses two capacitors, the Monolith unit, four capacitors, with pairs in parallel. Putting capacitors in parallel cuts the equivalent series resistance and inductance of the capacitor bank in half, which is good. Resistance and inductance in capacitors in undesirable. The lower the better.

Similarly there are multiple, parallel resistors connected to the emitter of each output transistor in the Monolith unit, there appears to be one resistor per transistor in the 7720. The effective resistance is likely the same, but parallel resistors likely will have lower inductance and a larger surface for cooling.
Quote:
Originally Posted by thatguy1985 View Post
Do you still hold the same opinion that it's not worth getting the Outlaw 7220 over the Monolith?

Thanks

Here is a link to post from a person who just purchased a 7 x 200 Monolith.

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-re...l#post59184822
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