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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been reading here for a while, and have a question for the experts:


I am setting up an HT. Current speakers are Martin Logan SL3s, and a ML center. I am about to get the Script surround speakers (I think).


My current AVR is a Sony GA8ES (5-6 years old), and from what I have learnt from this forum, and speaking to others, not suitable to drive the speakers correctly.


I am looking for a single AVR (rather than separates), mainly due to cost, that will drive the speakers at reasonable volumes (not to their limits), and well.


I also want to be able to switch component video (as I am about to get a FP).


Any suggestions in the $1000-2000 range ? Or do I really have to go the mono-bloc route, as the guy at Tweeters said ?


Thanks

Jason
 

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You could go with something like a Sony DA4ES as a preamp and a 5 channel power amp and stay under $2k with careful shopping (audiogon and ebay for the amp). I'd suggest using real power amps for Martin Logan speakers, but that is just because several ML speakers drop well below 2 Ohms, and that low of an impedance can be problematic for receiver amps. BTW, Sunfire amps and ML speakers go together like peanut butter and jelly. :D


If you are dead-set on only a receiver, then I'd look at the HK8000 from onecall (refurb for about $1150). That would be well within the budget, and should be able to drive the ML speakers fairly well considering H/K's stout amp sections.


Of course, YMMV.


Sorny
 

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You really should use a separate high-current amp for your ES speakers. In your budget range I recommend a Sunfire Cinema Grand multichannel. There is a dealer B-stock unit with warranty on sale at audiogon for $1,699, and several used ones even cheaper.


Dsmith
 

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I don't know how efficient the newer ML hybrid speakers are but a year ago I tried to drive my pair of CLSs with my top end Yamaha receiver. It was a joke compared to using any of my seperate amps. The CLSs just showed how lame even a very good receiver sounds, they are hard to drive and VERY revealing.


You would probably be very happy with a number of used amps on Audiogon. I remember seeing an Aragon 8008 x 3 for only $1,500. That whould be very decent sound for a reasonable price.
 

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I don't think you need to go to the monoblock extreme, but a good multichannel amp will drive your logans well. You could easily pick up a nice used multichannel amp from Rotel, Parasound, Marantz + a prepro like an Outlaw 950. Both of the amp and prepro could be had for under $2k. I'm not sure what the prices of used Sunfire amps are, but you definitely should take a look at Sunfire.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by shokunin
I don't think you need to go to the monoblock extreme, but a good multichannel amp will drive your logans well. You could easily pick up a nice used multichannel amp from Rotel, Parasound, Marantz + a prepro like an Outlaw 950. Both of the amp and prepro could be had for under $2k. I'm not sure what the prices of used Sunfire amps are, but you definitely should take a look at Sunfire.
The Aragon is a 3 channel amp, not a monoblock. I'm not a fan of the older Parasound amps for this speaker either, having just sold a 3500 that definately had an edge to it on my CLSs.


I would think that the MLs would also show up the limitations of the Outlaw pre. My recommendation would be a used processor. Several are selling now in the $1.5k range that will do much better with the revealing MLs. Try listning to a Proceed AVP, Lexicon DC-2 or MC-1or even a B+K Ref 30. All lack the latest SS formats but ought to have a more listenable sound long term than a cheaper but newer processor with all the latest bells and whistles.
 

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He needs amplification as well. A processor that costs $1500 leaves $500 for amps. Not a very wise alotment of cash IMHO.


Sorny
 

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I can't think of any combination at $2k that will do justice to speakers as revealing as the MLs are. There is no point in buying speakers with the strengths of inner detail without getting electronics that do them justice. The MLs are VERY demanding. I have used at least 2 recievers and 4 amps on my CLSs, so I know how revealing they are.


BUT I don't think that he needs to go the monoblock route either as suggested by the Tweeters salesman. IMO the value sweet spot for both used amps and processors these days seems to hone in at about $1,500 .
 

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I agree, $2k is limiting to go the separates route. Personally, I'd splurge more on the amp and get a decent prepro with the intention of upgrading the prepro at a later date, when money allows.


However, we all have to start somewhere. Even though he won't be able to extract the last bit of detail that his MLs can provide, a basic prepro and a good amp should begin his quest for great sound.
 

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This is about a month late, but I'm having good luck driving a pair of scripts with a denon 4802. Admittedly, they're about the smallest MLs you can get. :p


I'm still trying to choose a center to go with them, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well Guys,


thanks for all the info so far. As an update, I have now bought a DA7ES (for $1050) and love it. This drives the MLs ok, at low volumes, but I am still looking for an AMP. I also plan to go with ML scripts as the surround speakers, but since these are 6Ohm, I was thinking of driving these from the DA7ES, and getting a 3 channel amp for the front speakers.


Since I am going the ES route now, (I just got the NS999ES) I will probably get the TA-N9000ES amp from Sony.


I will audition it first though :)
 

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Jas666,


I think with all the good suggestions here, you figured out the most reasonable way for yourself. Get a decent AVR and then later a nice 3ch-amp and let the AVR handle the surround stuff. This is most likely the best bang for the buck. I do second the audiogon/ used tip but please be extra careful with ebay.


Till
 

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I had ML's for a while ( I miss them )


The more power you give them the better they will sound. These speakers are very revealing of any short comings in your equipment.
 

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Jas666,


If you want the very very best amp for your MLs, I strongly recommend the Innersound ESL, which is designed to drive electrostatics and difficult loads.

I use it for my non-esl speakers and it is a fanatastic amp for them also. The Innersound ESL is not cheap, but you can sometimes find them used at audiogon for under $2K. I suggest you go to the innersound.net website and learn more.


Dsmith
 

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I agree with the innersound amp being one oof the best amps to get for driver es. But for the money you can get a sunfire 5 channel amp used for about 1000-1200 that will give you 90-95% of what the innersound does. Also your looking at two channel which goes for 1600-2000 used vs. five. Heck at the 2000 level you are then looking at a used cinema grand. Definitely check out the white paper on the esl amp from www.innersound.net It will explain what to look for when trying to drive esl. It all about the voltage.
 
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