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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK I got the diva 5.1's in place. They are driven by my Sony 333 es. I like the amp but I made the mistake of going to the local hi fi shop and noticed subtle differences in information not provided my system. Now granted this was several thousand dollars worth of amplification. I am chalking this up more to amplification than the Diva's. I am giving thought to separate amplifcation for the Diva's. Possibly using the 333 as the pre amp. So the system my look like this. Separate amps for the L and R fronts, and allowing the Sony to Power the center and rears. Now the budget has to be reasonable for me sub 1K. On ubid they have the Acurus 200X3 usually going for about 400 bucks.I could see where this would be a great way to amplify the fronts so I have a matched signal to LCR. I was wondering if there are any great values in amplication that I should consider 2 channel minimum. This hobby is gettin more complicated and expensive by the moment.
 

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I agree on the separates thing personally.

I'm going to be picking up some divas soon and i will be using a pre-pro configuration. I think that you shouldn't have problems with your sony IF you aren't overloading the amp and getting distortion. Your speakers won't like that at all. If you are only amplifying 2 channels or 3 channels then you should be able to hit that sub $1k mark very easily. Parasound is supposed to have some decent/cheap separate amps. Might want to look into the Outlaw, or the onix stuff on av123.

Just feed them good, clean power and you shouldn't have to worry. IMHO


my .02
 

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I agree that considering the Outlaw 750 5 channel amp would be a good way to go. It is 160 wpc which would give you more than enough clean power for the 5.1's and you could run all all 5 speakers off the 333 as the pre/pro. I like the Sony just for the blue idiot light alone. The 750 is about $1150.00 shipped.
 

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I will be recieving my Diva 6.1 set up in the next week or so. I've also been wondering which amps to get to drive the 2 mains only for now. I'll see how my Pioneer receiver does but I've narrowed my choices to the Cinepro 1K 2-channel amp or the Bryston 4B-ST. Either one would be a good choice I know but I need to run a couple of 20-amp dedicated circuits before I make my purchase. I'm hoping I can order one of these 2 amps by the end of February. So all you Diva owners what amps are you using with your set-up???


Go Diamondbacks!!


Mike


waltj2k,

My choices are a little more out of your price zone, but I did see a Bryston 4B-ST on audiogon.com for around $1450. Maybe you could stretch the budget a little??
 

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I too am looking at a seperate amp for my 6.1's. I currently have an Onkyo TX-DS696 (which I bought before I knew I was getting the Diva's) and I can't help but thinking these awesome speakers would sound even better with a seperate dedicated amp.


We don't hear much regarding the rest of AV123's line, namely the Onix line mentioned by AgtCooper. I was looking at the Onix A-2150 Power Amplifier. Does anyone have any experiance with this piece? Any other info would be helpful....I don't really have a budget for this (cause I'm out of money :), but I could convince myself to shell out the 600 bones needed if it would be a significant enough improvment...


Sean
 

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Forget any solid state equipment if you want those Diva's to really sing. Get yourself some valves and hear how smooth and detailed they truely can be. After all, you dumped a lot of money on them, get the best out of them. I recently came into the world of tubes and I am BLOWN away by the differance in sound. Grant it, tubes are not for everyone for they are not as "plug and play" like solid scrape is but...If you want real quality musical sound, tubes are the ONLY way to go! I am totally amazed by it all! :)
 

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In particular the Dynaco ST-70's.:D Check em out on E-Bay.
 

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Sean, I actually played with the Onix system you mentioned for a while and liked it till my Maggies pushed the preamp into distortion and in turn shut down the left amp channel. Both the preamp & amp was working fine according to Greg after they were return to AV123. If you look close enough into the part 1 Diva thread I mentioned at least once the Onix amp sounds somewhat like a Bryston which I also used on the 6.1's for awhile. Right now my 6.1's are being driven by two channels of a unbridged Citation 7.1 and is sounding fine though not as good as the Bryston I have to say.


Dave, you are correct that using a tube amp to drive the Diva's will sound different but may not be to someone's liking not to mention the added inconvenience, expense & heat as compare to SS. Granted most of the folks here are trying to get better music performance out of an originally multichannel setup and throwing a tube amp into the mix may not be the smartest thing to do. I was seriuosly considering using a tube amp in my music system until I found out about my speakers' incompatibility and finally settled on a tube preamp as a compromise.


PF
 

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So would that be a thumbs up or down in the end for the 2150 over something like my Onk 696?


:)


Sean
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Musicality and depth of soundstage is what I am after. I guess just like everyone else. Though depth of soundstage is limited by the location of my 32' panasonic superflat. Come on plasma screen prices plummet. I've given thought to the outlaw, I seems for my 1st foray into separate amplification this is a no brainer based on all the reviews I have read about the amp. I have also checked out the Marantz 5 channel amplifier. I little bright. Bryston I will have to find a dealer here in Dallas to listen to and look at their product. Any company confident enough to put a 20 year warranty on their product must be making a solid product. Bryston is also in a bigger league than the budget will allow, for now. But then again this is for future consideration and it may be something to aspire to. I don't know if anyone has had a chance to listen to the sim Audio moon I 5 but that thing is wonderful, but now we are talking over 2k.


Tubes.....may sound wonderful, but I don't think they would be a good fit for me.


I have also been intrigued by the ONIX amplifiers on the av123 website. I wonder if they will have a review on the 2150 as well. We could use a little more clarification on PMF's comments.
 

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I'm using an Outlaw 750 with my Diva's (6.1's, 4.1's, C-3) and am very happy with the results. It's a very neutral amp with more power and headroom than the Onix amps, and would seemingly compare well to the Acurus A200X5 model (although Acurus is not too forthcoming with specs and build details). An ATI 1505 would be a nice match too if you can find one for within a couple hundred bucks of the Outlaw unit. I understand this is do-able if you look around. Although the ATI has the ability to properly drive lower impedence loads than just about anything in it's class (edges the Outlaw just a bit), I don't think you'd find this particularly useful with a relatively easy load like the Diva's. However I do think it's got a prettier face and that's gotta be worth something in the WAF area!
 

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Sean, I like the Onix combo driving my 6.1's if those are the speakers you're going to pair them up with. In fact I like the sound of the Onix over the Citation on the Diva's. The preamp also has some neat features you don't find on other preamps of this price. Apparently the Maggies' 4 Ohm load was a bit too much for them to handle even though I wasn't playing them loud at all (during speaker break in) in comparison to the 6.1's. Things I don't like about the Onix are the flimsy power cord & chassis. You can always do what I did which is audition them and if don't like ship them back although you would have save yourself the added cost of a separate preamp if you are to use your Sony's preamp outs.


PF
 

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waltj2k


After hearing Anthem's new MCA5 ver. II in 3 different installations, one of which was powering some Energy bookshelf Veritas, the other installation found it wonderfully driving Martin Logan Prodigy's while just getting above room temp. (no easy feat). Having spent some time in the Anthem/Martin Logan Room listening to a few audio only tracks I know quite well, (Loreena McKennitt's "The Mask and Mirror", the sound track from Stephen King's "The Stand", Enya: "Watermark", and Dead Can Dance "A Passage In Time"), I was completely taken by surprise as to what a "budget" amp. can do these days! So much so as to now seriously reconsider getting another Sunfire for my upcoming HT in favor of getting 3 MCA2 II's and saving a whole lotta money!


According to Anthem literature, this series of SS amps comes in the following varieties:

* MCA 2 Series II 185 watts in 8 ohms, 270 into 4, 400 into 2

* MCA 3 Series II 170 watts in 8 ohms, 250 into 4, 325 into 2

* MCA 5 Series II 170 watts in 8 ohms, 250 into 4, 325 into 2

Strangely, Anthem uses the single channel only figures elsewhere in their site, which rounds-up the numbers (i.e. MCA 2 @ 200 watts)


Nonetheless, I was auditioning the AVM20 (which I purchased!) upstream from the MCA5 II, and though the pre/pro and amp. were still breaking-in and the sales staff hadn't set up the room properly, the sound (at this early stage in their cycle) was so impressive as to wonder how Anthem does it for the money (they didn't sound budget in the least!). For instance, the MCA 2 II can be had for around $600-700 depending on dealer greed and your bargaining skills. And if you know someone in Canada who's close to a place that'll take care of their customers (oh like East Hamilton Radio in Hamilton, Ontario) that figure will be closer to $600! Which for what this overachieving series of amps can do is phenomenal!


Low-level detail was remarkable as were dynamics, octave-to-octave balance, imaging, harmonic structure, etc., etc., but most of all, the ease with which the ear/brain did comparatively little work to resolve the "picture" provided - was astounding for even way beyond the asking price. Before listening to the Anthems, I was resolute in knowing that Rotel marketed some of the best budget power amps of my acquaintance. Though I've not yet heard the two company's offerings side-by-side, it is highly likely that Anthem may just displace Rotel in my book. Moreover, let me put it this way: with wisely chosen ancillary equipment, an MCA based system will have your contemporaries wondering why the money they blew on costlier setups doesn't sound as good as yours (always good for discrete bragging rites!)


Get thee hence and listen wisely my brother...

;)
 

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Quote:
In particular the Dynaco ST-70's. Check em out on E-Bay.
Hoooo boy..... you're giving me a flashback to the bad old days, rt297. The first amp I ever owned was a brand new ST-70. Tubes were all we had back then and the 70 was quickly followed by better tube gear from McIntosh, etc. At best, the 70 was a mid-fi amp at a low-fi price. At worst, it had a terrible S/N ratio and high distortion levels, not to mention the change in the sound as the tubes aged. I was soooooooo glad when good solid state amps finally became affordable. Hey, I like classic cars but I wouldn't want to enter a race with one. I like classic tube gear as a conversation piece but I wouldn't want to listen to (or maintain) it. Beentheredonethatgotthetshirt.
 

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Catapult,

LOL. I think the Dynaco's S/N ratio is about 85. Ever heard of Sound Valve?


BigWally,

What pre/pro are you using with the 750?
 

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Ok now all this talk about amps is making me worried. Im real close (2-5 days) from buying a Diva setup 6.1, r3's and C3 along with an Onky 797. I was under the assumption that would be a sufficient enough reciever for those speakers (probably will use my current Infinity center channel for my rear center) Please tell me it will work and I should have no problems. I really would hate to tell my wife that i needed an amp or two also. Besides I need to save for my RPTV or plasma tv .
 

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Cool & mello, chill out the 797 will drive the Diva's fine. In fact you have the same setup as Max whom I suppose is now spending lots of time enjoying his new found pleasure. ;)


It was Walt who asked about taking some burden of his receiver that this whole amp thing was bought up. Of course if you are like most of us eventually the upgrade bug will get to you & the next logical step to take is by adding amp(s) to improve two channel music performance. :)


PF
 

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rt297,


I've been using a Denon AVR-3300 as a pre/pro for a couple of years with no complaints, but will probably spring for the Outlaw 950 once it's out. I'd like some better bass management and DPL-II so this unit looks like it will fit the bill nicely.
 

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coolmello, just wanted to clarify that I don't have any problems with my 696. Like pmf (Gifford- right?) said, just looking for the next thing that would enhance what is already the best system I have ever owned :)


Sean
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Cool mellow

I don't want to get you concerned about the 797 driving the Diva's. To be honest My Sony 333es rated at 85x5 runs my system nicely. No distortion, clean signal and pretty blue idiot light when detecting a 5.1 signal :D. Onkyo makes great amplification. If it makes you feel better I have a friend who is looking at the 787 for his next receiver. To help him out I contacted onecall.com. I asked if he had any sony es equipment on clearance. He mentioned they were are cleared out. But they had the 787 for 599$ he mentioned he felt it was a better receiver than the sony. Unbeknownst to him I own an Sony and they sold it to me. So take nice slow deep breaths, everything is fine.........let this purchase settle, then about 9 months from now start sowing the seeds of separates. "Honey the system sounds great but it could be better" Take this part of my advice with a grain of salt. I'm single, you ain't :rolleyes:


AirCeeJ

I will definitely "Get thee hence and listen wisely my brother" this is a new manufacturer on me so I will do my homework. But that is what makes this enjoyable. What I liked about you comments on the amp were....


Low-level detail was remarkable as were dynamics, octave-to-octave balance, imaging, harmonic structure, etc., etc., but most of all, the ease with which the ear/brain did comparatively little work to resolve the "picture" provided.


Low level detail is where I am looking for the most improvement. Large power for my situation now isn't to shake the walls. But to get fine details at a reasonable listening level.
 
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