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Three very different amps. Which to choose?

pogo

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Why limit yourself to 1ET9040BA. Much cheaper class D designs are still capable of audibly indistinguishable performance at a few hundred watts.
Then you probably haven't heard purifis in bridge mode yet. The 1ET9040BA is already bridged on the module itself. And the 'magic'/improved sq has nothing to do with the output power.
 
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wscottdo

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I am researching the NAD M66. In that case get the M23, or is there a better performing choice?
 

Steven Holt

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OH FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE'S MAN, BUY THE McINTOSH MA 5300 AND BE DONE WITH IT!!
 

earik

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If you've been doing internet research on amps, that probably means that you've read way too many "initial impressions" posts on the huge difference that some fancy amp made in some guy's system, and have found yourself in a frustrating situation where you are trying to buy the one that sounds the best, but can't be sure which person to trust. Here's my personal experience, out of having listened to a bunch of different amps: I can't hear the difference between any of them. I don't think you will be able to either.

So my advice will be to get the idea of "which sounds better" completely out of your head. They all sound the same. Power (more is better), build quality, and looks are what you need to decide on. Yeah, looks don't influence sound either, but honestly, that's probably what's behind all those impressions posts you've been reading. Don't believe me? Notice that the guy above me just recommended a McIntosh! Worse specs than class D, no audible difference, but it looks pretty cool sitting there. That stuff matters. If it didn't, we wouldn't have discussions about sighted bias.

Anyway, between the 3 you listed, Purifi is the "best" choice. But again, you're not going to be able to hear a difference between that one and one of the Apollon $1k Purifi amps that are also available.
 
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kemmler3D

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wscottdo

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Even if this implementation of the 1ET9040BA doesn't get the most out of it (due to the PSU), this would also be my first choice. Purifi in bridge mode is simply magic and unrecognisable, even at low volumes.
Can you explain your point about the PSU?

Thanks
 

kemmler3D

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Can you explain your point about the PSU?

Thanks
Sometimes the PSU in an amp doesn't supply enough current to the amplifier for it to reach its maximum voltage, I think that's the case here. So sometimes you may see the same module in an amp rated for higher wattage. It doesn't mean this amp won't perform as advertised, though.
 

terryforsythe

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Can you explain your point about the PSU?
The PSU probably is the limiting factor with regard to maximum output power.

As an example, my Hypex Nilai 500DIY Stereo amplifier uses a single power supply and two amplifier modules, one per channel. In that configuration the power output is rated at 250 W/channel, so each module is putting out 250 W.

The mono version of the amplifier uses the same power supply and amplifier module, but only one amplifier module since it is mono. In that configuration the amplifier module is getting all of the power provided by the power supply instead of sharing it with another amplifier module, and thus outputs 500W.
 

pogo

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If you look at the data sheet of the 1ET9040BA, you will see that the current PSUs do not deliver the full power at 2 ohms. And if you implement further measures, such as those at NAD (see also thermal management, ... of the M33/M23), even higher outputs are possible if the PSU is designed accordingly.
As an example, you can take a look at an M23 (1ET400A) and compare it with the other implementations.
 

Ze Frog

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I'd take the Apollon.

The tube amp, possibly if I lived in or near a country that makes decent tubes still. Most stock in Europe at present is largely the stuff first rejected from matching batches due to events Eastward.
 

Blumlein 88

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I'd take the Apollon.

The tube amp, possibly if I lived in or near a country that makes decent tubes still. Most stock in Europe at present is largely the stuff first rejected from matching batches due to events Eastward.
That tube amp is simply not a good choice for F208 speakers. It has a higher output impedance, in a larger room limited power, and isn't the best choice. The F208 has its lower impedance range in the lower frequencies where the tube amp will work less well. If one wanted tubes with F208's you need a bigger more powerful tube amp in this situation.
 
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wscottdo

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That tube amp is simply not a good choice for F208 speakers. It has a higher output impedance, in a larger room limited power, and isn't the best choice. The F208 has its lower impedance range in the lower frequencies where the tube amp will work less well. If one wanted tubes with F208's you need a bigger more powerful tube amp in this situation.
Can you suggest 2-3 tube amps that would be an outstanding choice? budget less than 6k
 

SIY

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Can you suggest 2-3 tube amps that would be an outstanding choice? budget less than 6k
Don't. There aren't any currently made commercial tube amps I'm aware of that could be an "outstanding" choice. If you hired someone competent to custom make one for you (and "competent" is hard to find in that world!), you'll be laying out five figures easily. Certainly I wouldn't do it for less than $10k, and I don't think people like Pete Millett or Menno Vanderveen or Morgan Jones would, either.

For a tiny fraction of that, you can get a Class D amp that will drive the heck out of your speakers, not kill your electric bills, and run cool and reliably. This is 2024, be happy that we have come so far in electronics!
 

Ze Frog

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Can you suggest 2-3 tube amps that would be an outstanding choice? budget less than 6k
Muzishare X7 is a quarter of your budget and measures favourably compared to lots of more expensive stuff. Check out Skunky Designs review on it on YouTube, also mods to make it even better.

With this thing you could even buy a great class D amp and still have a chunk of money saved.
 

kemmler3D

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If you are very keen to have tubes in the signal path, you can use a tube preamp and run it into the apollon or other Class D unit. A tube power amp is probably more trouble than it's worth in 2024.
 
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wscottdo

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I think the tube option has been crossed off by consensus.

Apollon vs Benchmark x2?
 

kemmler3D

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I think the tube option has been crossed off by consensus.

Apollon vs Benchmark x2?

Benchmark stuff is well regarded around here, AFAIK it's seen as reliable, well-built, and performs extremely well.

I don't think there's a sound quality argument to be made between the two - the numbers are excellent for both, and so no difference in audible quality is expected.

Ultimately between those two it's a matter of what your priorities are in terms of looks, warranty, build quality, etc. I think a lot of people at ASR would say Benchmark is too expensive for the watts you get, others would say it's more than fine to go with them for the fit & finish and other characteristics.
 
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