Marantz HD-Amp1 or other compact integrated?

Discussion in 'Equipment Reviews & Opinions' started by beastwoo, Jan 29, 2018.

  1. beastwoo

    beastwoo New Member

    I'm looking for opinions on the Marantz HD-Amp1 integrated amplifier to drive a set of Wharfedale Diamond 10.7 floor standing speakers, rated 90 dB, 6 Ohms. Does anyone have experience with this amplifier driving floor standing speakers like this?

    I have been looking for a compact integrated amplifier to fit inside the back of a 1968 Zenith Y931 stereo console. I bought this primarily as a piece of furniture, and it is in great shape as furniture. The receiver and turntable inside are in rougher shape, and because I already have speakers I love, I figured I would use the cabinet to house a modern amplifier but keep all the original parts unmodified so I could eventually overhaul the receiver when I have time or can find an expert. (Getting the Zenith working well would be a secondary project--I would still listen primarily through the Wharfedales.)

    Because I want to do no harm to the cabinet, I am working with limited space and ventilation, and won't have access to the unit most of the time, I figured modern, compact, class D integrated amplifiers with remote would serve my purpose. The working space is about 15 x 15 x 7" (wdh), so full-rack components won't fit. Aside from the Marantz HD-Amp1, I have considered NuPrime IDA-8 and Quad Vena. Both of those look good on paper, but I know less about the companies, and I would have to order either of those online without hearing them first. The Marantz ticks nearly all my boxes, I know I like the Marantz sound, and it is available somewhat locally so I could audition it, but I'm just a little worried about power driving floor standing speakers (35/70 wpc @ 8/4 ohms). However, I do not listen to music very loudly and I have read the Marantz is "quite conservatively spec'd". My room is approximately 16x24'.

    My sources will be streaming lossless CDs through an Airport Express and a Dual 1237 turntable paired with a Schiit Mani phono amp (these should fit with no modification to the cabinet). Most of my music is digital, and I may try a Chromecast or Raspberry Pi system at some point, so I would like the integrated amplifier to have a good DAC onboard. My musical taste includes jazz, classic rock, indie, and some classical music.

    Can anyone recommend the Marantz HD-Amp1 for this purpose, is one of the other amplifiers on my short list clearly superior, or perhaps another compact integrated DAC/amp in the ~$1100 range? Is there anything I've overlooked?


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