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Review and Measurements of Klipsch PowerGate DAC & Amp

GGroch

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Buyers beware!.......
Perhaps, but that does not sound at all right to me.

State of the warranty would totally depend on who on Amazon you purchased it from, not the price you paid.

I am sure that one of the two $150 sellers, Sound Distributors Inc, is a large authorized Klipsch dealer. They show on Klipsch's dealer list. The other current seller is Roberts Camera, is a very reliable 70 year old company showing Klipsch on their website. It does not really matter if they show up on Klipsch's dealer list, what matters is whether Roberts bought them from Klipsch.

Since you are concerned, I would contact your Amazon merchant seller directly and ask them. Since they are being sold as New, not factory refurbished or open box 2nds, then Klipsch must honor the full warranty if Klipsch sold them to these dealers.
 
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Perhaps, but that does not sound at all right to me.

State of the warranty would totally depend on who on Amazon you purchased it from, not the price you paid.

I am sure that one of the two $150 sellers, Sound Distributors Inc, is a large authorized Klipsch dealer. The other current seller is Roberts Camera, is a very reliable 70 year old company showing Klipsch on their website.

Since you are concerned, I would contact your Amazon merchant seller directly and ask them. Since they are being sold as New, not factory refurbished or open box 2nds, then Klipsch must honor the full warranty if Klipsch sold them to these dealers.
Thank you. I will do that. But for future buyers I guess the warning still applies.
 

invaderzim

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....then Klipsch must honor the full warranty if Klipsch sold them to these dealers.
The key part there being "if" Klipsch sold them to the vendor.

Vendors that aren't 'authorized' have a lot of different ways of getting a hold of products. I remember a story a boss once told me about Costco and their 'interceptors' that tracked large shipments from manufactures, that wouldn't sell to Costco, to their authorized customers. Once they found out the shipment was in transit they would contact the destination customer and offer to buy the entire shipment. If successful the delivery would then be rerouted.
With one product the original company then sent their sales reps into Costco and had them buy every one of the products just to keep the 'exclusive' feel to their line.

About a decade ago Honda cleaned out a bunch of 'extra' accessories from their warehouses. They wrote the product off and paid to have it hauled to a land fill. The company hauling it realized it was actually valuable and the best of it was unloaded before the land fill. All sorts of 'Genuine Honda' stuff showed up on Ebay for a fraction of the price that Honda dealers could get it for.
 

GGroch

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........Vendors that aren't 'authorized' have a lot of different ways of getting a hold of products......
You are right, not every dealer of a product is authorized and it is good to be skeptical. In this particular case both dealers on Amazon selling "New" Klipsch Powergates for $150 at the moment are authorized Klipsch Dealers.

The 1st, Sound Distributors Shows up on the main Klipsch "Authorized Dealer" web page. The 2nd, Robert's Camera shows up in their dealer locator and key in Robert's Headquarters Zip Code: 46204. Because I am familiar with both dealers and the Klipsch website confirms they are authorized, that is enough for me. But, certainly one could call the dealers, or Klipsch, or both if you are still unconvinced.

The Costco story interests me because I worked for a major regional HiFi/TV chain for many years. Your story sounds right. But Costco was in most cases honest with customers about not being authorized, and provided their own "if it ever breaks, bring it back for a refund" warranty. They are a top 10 electronics retailer now and a lot of big brands are fighting to sell to them. Sadly, they no longer have that if it ever breaks return it deal.

I used the wording "If Klipsch sold it to them" because there are often cases where manufacturers will go outside of their normal dealer network to unload excess products, and do it through previously not authorized dealers. One example was a really great sale on JBL 306P MKii monitors before Christmas. You could get them from several very large internet retailers for $157 a pair. Most of the dealers were not previously authorized, but since JBL sold them to them, JBL must back the warranty regardless of whether they are listed on the website or not.
 
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I used the wording "If Klipsch sold it to them" because there are often cases where manufacturers will go outside of their normal dealer network to unload excess products, and do it through previously not authorized dealers. One example was a really great sale on JBL 306P MKii monitors before Christmas. You could get them from several very large internet retailers for $157 a pair. Most of the dealers were not previously authorized, but since JBL sold them to them, JBL must back the warranty regardless of whether they are listed on the website or not.
heh, i got in on that 306P sale (BH)...that was a killer deal.
 

GGroch

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heh, i got in on that 306P sale (BH)...that was a killer deal.
Sure was. I got 2 pair and resold one to pay for the other.

There was some discussion then on Slickdeals about warranty status, and one SDer phoned ProAudioStar (a gigantic pro sound distributor) and asked why they were not listed on JBL's website as a dealer. His frustrated response...."Where else but JBL do you think I got 30 pallets of the damn things."
 
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No fan, but does have grills on the sides. FWIW, just measured the temps again -- off but plugged in for several hours...around 107 top and bottom, same 75 ambient. Warmer than i'd like. I'll try standing it on it's side while elevated a bit off the desk...or I could hook it up to my smart power strip.
rainy saturday, so i dug out the flir one...powergate was on standbuy for a few hours.

top:
powergate top.jpg


top high temp:
powergate top temp.jpg


bottom:
powergate back.jpg

bottom high temp:
powergate back temp.jpg
 

HuskerDu

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Thanks @amirm,

Great information. I returned my Emotiva for the Klipsch. Using CCA DAC as an analog source. Powering Zu DW speakers.

Thanks @BillG and others for informative comments as well. I picked up the fan mentioned, and it works fine. Glad to hear about the USB port. Somehow I missed that when I was looking for it. I have noticed that the Powergate seems to boot up in Bluetooth mode (rather than the most recent source) after shutting itself off.

Just for fun, y'all, I was listening to a playlist on Qobuz lossless when I heard a track that had static from vinyl playback recorded into it. My wife, who started listening in the eighties, had never heard that noise before. What a hoot. (I'm not completely sure I'm describing it well, but the noise was specific to that track only.)

Also, FYI, my JBL Charge 3s sound very good too. I've been surprised that they seem to keep up pretty well. (Also CCA for the DAC.) At the end of the day, I like that big speakers move more air. But at night-time listening levels the JBLs are mighty close -- making the big speakers a guilty pleasure, for sure. (Many have pointed out that listening tests are tangled up in confirmation bias. I'm feeling pretty guilty... But hey, the Powergate has made me $300 less guilty, sooo ....)
 

BillG

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Thanks @BillG and others for informative comments as well.
You're welcome.

I have noticed that the Powergate seems to boot up in Bluetooth mode (rather than the most recent source) after shutting itself off.
I've only noticed this if I remove power from the unit and then turn it back on afterwards. When in network standby mode, upon reawakening, it returns to whatever source I had selected prior. Did you install the firmware update? :cool:
 

amirm

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HuskerDu

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Did you install the firmware update? :cool:
Definitely updated the firmware and ...something else I think. Getting it all done seemed to require two apps, but eventually the Klipsch apps confirmed the Powergate was running the most current software.

I think you're right about the recovery from stand-by. This morning it was top of the mind, and I noticed it coming back to where I'd left it. We've had bad weather lately and that box has bounced in between listening, for sure. (I usually unplug, always surge protection, etc... All's well so far.)
 
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Would using an under $30 DAC like the Speaka USB DAC as the input for the Powergate be a noticeable improvement? I need a desktop amp and DAC for my computer, the Klipsch would be perfect if the DAC were better. I cannot spend more than $180 total for the two, and I'd really like to get a least one of the 2 (amp or DAC) that I can use going forward and not need to upgrade for a long time. I can get the Speaka DAC & Powergate and later upgrade the DAC, or I can get a Topping or Tone Board now and a cheap class D amp and later upgrade that part.
 

GGroch

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Would using an under $30 DAC like the Speaka USB DAC as the input for the Powergate be a noticeable improvement?...
No. The Powergate's DAC measured poorly through the Preamp Outputs...for a DAC...but the cause was mostly its Distortion of .015% or so, which is bad for a DAC, but almost certainly not noticeable. The Poweramp's distortion measurements are worse, at .02%, but that is quite good for a poweramp, which usually measure more poorly. If you add a DAC it will have to go through the power amp....so its distortion would be added to that.

The DAC in the Powergate matches fine with the Powergate's Amp...and should not add noticeable distortion. Try it.
 

HuskerDu

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Would using an under $30 DAC like the Speaka USB DAC as the input for the Powergate be a noticeable improvement?
@scotto541 ... My reading around, to answer that question for myself, suggests that the DAC in the Powergate will do fine for you now. Later, you can play with DACs and see if you can hear a penny's worth of difference. I tried to compare the Klipsch vs the Chromecast Audio -- since I already had the CCA -- Mmmmaybe I could hear a difference in the "clashiness" of higher pitched sounds, like somebody singing the letter "s"...maybe. If I had not had them to compare back-to-back, I would have been none the wiser. Also, I've lately noticed my new speakers showing me very high pitched sounds I was not hearing before. My old speakers were really decent budget speakers...and prolly were not playing that far end of the range anyway! And of course, I'm hearing what I want to hear to rationalize my purchases. @GGroch is prolly right about the data, too. Again, assuming it's really there for me to detect, there are lots of reasons I would not have noticed it as a stand alone setup.

The Klipsch is (now) dirt cheap and a great way to tie a bunch of your old stuff together with 100 clean Watts out. The Bluetooth works well, for times when you just want some tunes.

Lastly, I had to unlearn Chromecast... This unit does the "broadcast" side, and the other little widget -- Amazon, $35 per drop -- allows speakers you don't want to wire up (e.g. by the pool) to "receive" whatever is playing on Powergate. There are several apps that appear likely to let you control the lot, as well as the Klipsch app. (I have had no reason to test the apps though... ;-)
 
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rainy saturday, so i dug out the flir one...powergate was on standbuy for a few hours.
Neat!

Have you done measurements after a few hours of powering speakers at moderate levels?

I know that mine would get to what I consider "hot to the touch" on the bottom of the unit after powering speakers for a while. That's why I added a fan.
 
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@GGroch and @HuskerDu , that is super helpful for me. I'm new here and I really love this site and the approach, but I'm having trouble interpreting the measurements and how to use this info in my sound systems and budget.
So would I notice the difference in the Klipsch's DAC vs the Speaka DAC if I had a higher quality integrated amp or preamp?
I'll go poke around the Hearability link when I can before I ask too many more questions that have already been answered. Thanks again.
 
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Neat!

Have you done measurements after a few hours of powering speakers at moderate levels?

I know that mine would get to what I consider "hot to the touch" on the bottom of the unit after powering speakers for a while. That's why I added a fan.
no, but the amp is still in "testing" (home office) versus "production" (living room), so i can do that. update to come.
 
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