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Review and Measurements of Crown XLS 1502 Amp

rajapruk

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#41
Yes there has been a lot of talk on the Crown PA amps suitability for Hi Fi use and this pretty much answers that.
Thanks to Amir and the loaning member!
This was the entry-level tested. I would really like to see some of the Crown flagships tested as well. ITech 5000HD for example.
https://www.crownaudio.com/en/products/i-tech-5000hd

Just to see how they compare to Hypex nc400.
 

sonci

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#42
Is this a class D or AB amplifier?
It would be interesting to see how vintage power amplifiers stack against modern ones..
 

Dialectic

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#43
Is this a class D or AB amplifier?
It would be interesting to see how vintage power amplifiers stack against modern ones..
It is Class D.
 

confucius_zero

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#44

Ron Texas

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#45
I have a 1502 hooked up to a pair of LS50's. The built in DSP high pass filter is set to 71 hz, which actually starts to roll off the bass at 75 hz. As I look at the charts distortion seems to be weighted to high frequencies which I can't hear due to being older than most of the crowd around here. My thinking is the high pass filter cuts speaker distortion more than an amplifier with much higher resolution would provide given my "lack of appreciation" for the final octave.

I will try going without the high pass filter, perhaps stuffing the ports to roll off the L50's and see if there is any change. There are Nord makes Hypex stereo amps for under $700 using the new single board Hypex modules. Or, I could spend that money some other way...
 

andreasmaaan

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#46

RayDunzl

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#47
These more expensive models aren't supposed to offer better audio performance IIUC, but simply more power.
I think this is the Crown selection for the JBL M2 speakers;

1546888948326.png


About the same, I suppose. More processing options. More power.

Probably "good enough".
 
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rajapruk

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#48
It would be very interesting to know that for a fact (that itech 5000 hd has same distortion performance as xls 1502)
If so, then the standard JBL M2 Master Reference Monitor setup is used with eye-watering crappy amps (relatively) in studios etc.
 

Blumlein 88

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#50
Might that be why in the Avs shootout the Revels were preferred. Better amps than they M2.
 

amirm

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#51
It would be very interesting to know that for a fact (that itech 5000 hd has same distortion performance as xls 1502)
If so, then the standard JBL M2 Master Reference Monitor setup is used with eye-watering crappy amps (relatively) in studios etc.
There is a Mark Levinson package for M2 under the JBL Synthesis. And other configurations can be used with guidance from Harman.

But yeh, probably a fair number of them are using the Crown. Maybe my review increases the sales of other amps. :)
 

JJB70

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#52
Whilst the measurements may not be brilliant, I do think this amplifier shows that it is possible for a recognised brand name with a good provenance to build a high powered amplifier to a high standard and a modest price with none of the sloppy build, safety and poor layout issues that bedevils a lot of low cost audio gear. Despite the measurements, for real world listening I suspect these would be perfectly adequate for most people.
 

andreasmaaan

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#53
I would have thought this amp measured very well. There might be a borderline few listeners/systems/recordings in which this amp's nonlinear distortion is just audible - thought certainly not objectionable - while in the majority of cases this amp will provide transparency and mountains of power.
 

sergeauckland

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#55
I would have thought this amp measured very well. There might be a borderline few listeners/systems/recordings in which this amp's nonlinear distortion is just audible - thought certainly not objectionable - while in the majority of cases this amp will provide transparency and mountains of power.
Compared to the effect on SQ of recording quality, speakers and room acoustics I think even if listeners can discern distortion it'll be trivial compared to those other factors.
Once transparency is reached, and I think that pretty much most amps since the 1980s are thus, there are far more important parameters than sheer measured performance. Reliability and ruggedness, including full protection for any load, stability when clipping and thermal protection are to me more important than another 20dB off the distortion. Serviceability too matters, although I accept that the use of SMD has increased reliability at the expense of serviceability, so it's a reasonable tradeoff, albeit one that grates when a product eventually has to be thrown away rather than repaired.

S
 

RayDunzl

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#56
Hook up a speaker and drag out your measurement mic.

See if you can see any of the defects above in-room at 2~3 meters...

Although, as a Level 8 (is that what you achieved?) you should be able to hear them...

I'm probably a level 1, matching my speakers. Guess I need to attempt the test to be sure.
 
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amirm

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#57
Whilst the measurements may not be brilliant, I do think this amplifier shows that it is possible for a recognised brand name with a good provenance to build a high powered amplifier to a high standard and a modest price with none of the sloppy build, safety and poor layout issues that bedevils a lot of low cost audio gear. Despite the measurements, for real world listening I suspect these would be perfectly adequate for most people.
That's for sure. It leaves no reason to buy non-name stuff from ebay and such.
 

svart-hvitt

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#59
@amirm , time to listen? Is the distortion of Crown’s cheapo amp ameliorate, benign?

Audiophiles seem to seek distortion so this may be just what the doctor ordered?

;)

On a more serious note: Did you listen to it? Are the unnwanted byproducts easily audible?
 

confucius_zero

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#60
Did you listen to it? Are the unnwanted byproducts easily audible?
I was wondering that too. Review is missing subjective listening section.
 

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