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AVR vs Integrated stereo amplifier for KEF LS50 Meta?

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Hello,

I have a pair of KEF LS50 Meta and am currently powering the speakers with my Yamaha TSR-700 AVR (rated at 100WPC @ 8 Ohms). While I think the sound coming out of the speakers already sound pretty great, I was wondering if a dedicated stereo amp could make it sound even better. If they would actually sound significantly better, what stereo amps would you recommend?

I was looking at:
Bluesound Powernode
Rotel A12
Cambridge Audio CXA81

But feel free to let me know if there are better options!

I'd be most likely using the amp with A&K SE180 DAC connected to my desktop PC. Having said that, bluetooth, HDMI, PC input or integrated DACs are all welcomed features, but are not necessary.

Thank you so much for your help in advance!
 

CBdicX

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Hello,

I have a pair of KEF LS50 Meta and am currently powering the speakers with my Yamaha TSR-700 AVR (rated at 100WPC @ 8 Ohms). While I think the sound coming out of the speakers already sound pretty great, I was wondering if a dedicated stereo amp could make it sound even better. If they would actually sound significantly better, what stereo amps would you recommend?

I was looking at:
Bluesound Powernode
Rotel A12
Cambridge Audio CXA81

But feel free to let me know if there are better options!

I'd be most likely using the amp with A&K SE180 DAC connected to my desktop PC. Having said that, bluetooth, HDMI, PC input or integrated DACs are all welcomed features, but are not necessary.

Thank you so much for your help in advance!

Hi, do not think you will "hear" any differents when you start using a Stereo amp when you compare both in "Pure / Direct"setting.

The Yamaha will take any audio format, a Stereo amp will not, you have room correction and more benefits from the TRS.
A modern AVR is for my ears as good as any Stereo amp but the AVR will have loads of benefits.
 
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Hagar

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I'm powering my Kef LS50's with an older Denon AVR-988, which I use in direct mode. Prior to this I was using a Yamaha A-S501. I could not hear any difference between the 2, so I sold the Yamaha.
 

Astoneroad

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I've used both the Yamaha N-500 stereo amp and now use the Yamaha RX-V385 AVR to drive my Revel F206s. I can't hear any difference in Direct mode between the two. It makes me very happy to get this kind of great sound for relatively little money for the AVR/Amp. I definitely would not invest with the expectation of an actual, noticeable improvement. I also owned several pairs of the LS50s that were powered with both these Yamahas... they sounded great too.... take it for what it's worth. Good luck.
 

CBdicX

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No human can hear any differents in amps when played in Pure or Direct mode.
Its the speakers that make "warm" or "cool" sounding amps, not the amp itsef......

The people that say they can hear differents in amps, must do a blind test with several amps, and try to pick out the correct amp :rolleyes:
 
OP
I
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Thank you for your input! I already placed an order
No human can hear any differents in amps when played in Pure or Direct mode.
Its the speakers that make "warm" or "cool" sounding amps, not the amp itsef......

The people that say they can hear differents in amps, must do a blind test with several amps, and try to pick out the correct amp :rolleyes:
I agree with both of you. After looking at myriads of reviews everywhere, I actually took some time to test out bunch of options personally. While I could sometimes hear subtle differences, they weren't worth spending hundreds or more for an integrated stereo amp. Thank you for your inputs!
 

kongwee

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In my country, many shops that house these models. Can really test them whether you need a dedicated amp or not. This is only way to shop if you don't want to regret a purchase. If you are really sticking to stereo in long run, don't need to buy AVR. Go out and listen since you have a setup.
 

CBdicX

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In my country, many shops that house these models. Can really test them whether you need a dedicated amp or not. This is only way to shop if you don't want to regret a purchase. If you are really sticking to stereo in long run, don't need to buy AVR. Go out and listen since you have a setup.

That is an option, only not the best option.

The best way to test a amp (or speaker) is in your own home/room !!
Your room is dictating the way audio stuff sounds, if you listen in a store, you judge the sound in that space.

At home you can do an A/B test between your AVR and Stereo Amp (and come to the conclusion that there is no differents ;) )
Also for speakers, do not judge them in a store, buy them online, get them in your house and if you do not like them sent them back.
This is what I do for years now, its some work but the best way..........
 

kongwee

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That is an option, only not the best option.

The best way to test a amp (or speaker) is in your own home/room !!
Your room is dictating the way audio stuff sounds, if you listen in a store, you judge the sound in that space.

At home you can do an A/B test between your AVR and Stereo Amp (and come to the conclusion that there is no differents ;) )
Also for speakers, do not judge them in a store, buy them online, get them in your house and if you do not like them sent them back.
This is what I do for years now, its some work but the best way..........
Home is the best. Yes and no. In store, they can have the same speaker like yours. Or even test with harder speakers. I rather go out and listen all these at once rather than keeping send in and out. For me I can heard the different easily between AVR and dedicated amp. I mean $1000 AVR can easily done by $500 amp in stereo why not?
 

CBdicX

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Home is the best. Yes and no. In store, they can have the same speaker like yours. Or even test with harder speakers. I rather go out and listen all these at once rather than keeping send in and out. For me I can heard the different easily between AVR and dedicated amp. I mean $1000 AVR can easily done by $500 amp in stereo why not?

When you want to hear differents, you will hear differents !

Why would a Stereo amp of $500 be any better then a $1000 AVR > in Direct/Pure mode ??

With a pure Stereo amp you will miss out on room correction/ bass management / LFE control ect. and not just for multi channel use.
I will never go for a Stereo amp, it has 0 benefits compared to a modern AVR or AVC, and a Stereo amp will sound exact the same at best, and less if you take room correction and the other AVR benefits in account.

And I do not like Stereo (mode) for TV or Movies, for Music its ok, and then I run the LS50M in Direct mode, without the 2 subs.
So for me........ AVR's rules ..........:D
 
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Ata

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I am happily using the AVR in my signature and the LS50 Meta, using Direct mode for more critical listening.
 

kongwee

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When you want to hear differents, you will hear differents !

Why would a Stereo amp of $500 be any better then a $1000 AVR > in Direct/Pure mode ??

With a pure Stereo amp you will miss out on room correction/ bass management / LFE control ect. and not just for multi channel use.
I will never go for a Stereo amp, it has 0 benefits compared to a modern AVR or AVC, and a Stereo amp will sound exact the same at best, and less if you take room correction and the other AVR benefits in account.

And I do not like Stereo (mode) for TV or Movies, for Music its ok, and then I run the LS50M in Direct mode, without the 2 subs.
So for me........ AVR's rules ..........:D
DSP, you can do it outside the amp. It is not big concern, OP has PC to do it anyway. With the same quality component using listening to stereo, of course $500 is better. You save on extra 4 channel, extra inputs....etc that you don't need, and lots smaller. Just a lot less components to compromise quality. Properly you get better handling of speakers. Especially the drive and controlled punch. Japanese amp has their own character too, from Yamaha up to Accuphase, they alway sound polite and relax.
 

BDWoody

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Just a lot less components to compromise quality. Properly you get better handling of speakers. Especially the drive and controlled punch. Japanese amp has their own character too, from Yamaha up to Accuphase, they alway sound polite and relax.

Complete nonsense.

Once again.
 

Shat_thyself

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An interesting discussion, and an additional purchase many avr owners have no doubt considered.
 
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