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Review and Measurements of Crown XLS 1502 Amp

amirm

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The Wyred4Sound ST1000 mkii should do it.
It's probably hard for them to mess up an ICEpower design, but after seeing that DAC review...

Personally, I feel the ATI/Monoprice Monolith is the known-good, value leader around $1k, at least for buyers in the USA. (Because of the modular design, I'd buy 3 or 5 channels. Only $100 extra each...) Audioholics ran AP tests a while back, and the current versions add XLR inputs. The major drawback is size/weight from the traditional AB design.

March Audio's P502 stereo amp for $1000 would do it as well.
Those look fantastic, too. It's good to see Ncore without tweaky buffers, etc.
 

yummy

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those old Crown are better, golden days, but all units on the market are used, need to change caps
 

confucius_zero

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so how do I hook up RCA cables into it from a RCA pre-amp?
 

Blumlein 88

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It's probably hard for them to mess up an ICEpower design, but after seeing that DAC review...

Personally, I feel the ATI/Monoprice Monolith is the known-good, value leader around $1k, at least for buyers in the USA. (Because of the modular design, I'd buy 3 or 5 channels. Only $100 extra each...) Audioholics ran AP tests a while back, and the current versions add XLR inputs. The major drawback is size/weight from the traditional AB design.


Those look fantastic, too. It's good to see Ncore without tweaky buffers, etc.
I've the Wyred4Sound ST500. I use it on Soundlab Aura ESLs. You need quite the amp to play those well. These ST500 play them with aplomb and with good sound. I've had some much more expensive amps on them and none equal the ST500. A friend had the ST1000 and switched to the Bel Canto Reference 1000 monos. They might be better, but I'm not sure. Bel Canto has a darker sound that seems just a little too dark to me. I've used some Classe 25 (also slightly dark IMO), some of the large C-J FET amps (beautiful sound, but not quite transparent), and heard another pair of Soundlabs with bridged Classe 25's. The latter was the only thing that seemed to handle the Soundlab about as well.

The Hypex NC400s should be better still.
 

sac

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Bought the 1502 ~ month ago for home audio. Wanted a high power amp for biamping the woofer sides of my apogee caliper signatures(3 ohm and 80dB sensitivity) My rotel 200W a side amp would get very hot powering these speakers to high volumes by itself. Figured even if the 1502 didnt have good S/N ratio that it wouldn't matter with my low sensitivity speakers and would leave the topend to the rotel.

When I first got it I just did a swap for the rotel and it sounded louder and better.....and barely got warm. Now I have it setup just powering the bass panel with a 600 Hz cutoff and the rotel on the topend.
My major annoyance is that the amp's sleep mode isnt really a sleep mode but just a speaker mute, temperature measurements confirm it uses just as mush power in sleep than it does at idle switched on.
 
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anmpr1

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...(3 ohm and 80dB sensitivity)
But...but, you'd get so much more front to back depth, pace, and liquid soundstage using a single ended triode amp! And with those sensitivity figures pumping out the low end, you could (would have to) tube roll every other day. LOL
 
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My major annoyance is that the amp's sleep mode isnt really a sleep mode but just a speaker mute, temperature measurements confirm it uses just as mush power in sleep than it does at idle switched on.
I put mine on a smart power strip, triggered by my preamp. Zero watts in sleep mode now :).
 
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I've used this unit as my amp for my speakers for a long time and love it.

After this review though it seems that what I learned on avsforum may have some room for improvement. If I understand the review (and conclusion which is easier for me haha) it really looks like I need to eventually upgrade this amp.

Currently I love it though I have the original 1500 and it's been in use for 6+ years now.

Edit: I can't imagine you'd not be well received at avs forum diy section. I'm sure many members would send you other amps for measurements too.

The crown XLS is a crowd favorite there which is why it was my first amp.
The inuke and the lab grupen Chinese clone amps would be very interesting to see tested and I'm sure you'd easily have someone send you one as members are ordering new amps all the time.

Now that I know you test home units, there is no way I'll buy one without checking to see if you're able to receive and test it first.

It depends how loud he likes his music, I doubt any many people are using this amp for near-field desktop listening, it would be a little bit over kill.
I use this amp near-field on my desk connected to my phone pc or ipod.
I have seen tests on avsforum where people limited speakers that were 99+ sensitivity rating to 1 watt and it was loud as hell.

I just like having the headroom... I haven't been using surround sound since I've moved twice recently, so I only had lcr set up, and that I powered off my inuke (center off the receiver left 1 channel unused and had a sub powered too. It's the 4 channel one). So I just had the amp unused and the surrounds unused so put them on my desk. I'll use 6.5 inch woofer bookshelf speakers on my desk!
 
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amirm

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Edit: I can't imagine you'd not be well received at avs forum diy section.
I am banned on AVS Forum after more than 15,000 posts and more than a decade there! The reason for banning was linking to articles I had written for various magazines which the moderator in charge said was "spam." AVS forum has since changed hands as far as ownership but my banning status remains. I have not tried to get back in. Occasionally I see questions about my work here which sadly I can't respond to it.
 
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Currently I love it though I have the original 1500 and it's been in use for 6+ years now.
IIRC, that amp does not have the DSP features. Seems possible that it's higher fidelity than the current xx02 models.

Either way, it is a bit overkill for nearfield use. :)
 
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I have the 1500 and 2000. Never heard the later version but assumed the DSP was defeatable. Never tried the crossover and other functions, including the attenuators.
Feed it a balanced signal and use the Speakon outputs. Run the attenuators wide open and control the volume upstream. Works fine with normal sensitivity speakers.
Paid 169.00 for the XLS-1500 and 269.00 for the XLS-2000 after the ‘02 versions came out. I saw the XLS-1500 got down to 149.00 and the 2000 for 199.00. Missed out.
 
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Sorry guyz, I can't agree: PA-oriented amps are unusable on home/hifi setups, due to active cooling (fans).

Fanless (= 0db noise) amps - such as studio ones - is the RIGHT way to go.
 
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Sorry guyz, I can't agree: PA-oriented amps are unusable on home/hifi setups, due to active cooling (fans).
Fanless (= 0db noise) amps - such as studio ones - is the RIGHT way to go.
As with most generalizations, not always true. The specific amp series in question is silent in normal home/hifi use (fan doesn't come on at all). I've monitored mine personally through some rather intense dual subwoofer duty (loud with measured flat to 17Hz in room response). Others have reported that if they do come on, they are quiet around normal domestic noise floor.
 
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