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Need advice on an pre-amp/amp or integrated amp under $1000...

Discussion in 'Equipment Reviews & Opinions' started by Jeff Vitale, Jan 20, 2018.

  1. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    Hi All.. new here... just re-starting with my sound system after MANY yrs... I used to have a Harman Kardon Citation IV/V (my dad built) and some Fisher speakers (3-way), as well as a Marantz 2270 and some Bookshelf BICs... was storing my gear at my sisters... after decades... she decided it was junk virtually gave it all away at a garage sale (ahhhhhhhhh)... wish i had the citation IV/V and the Marantz now!

    Anyway, starting fresh... purchased a pair of Sonist Audio Concerto 4s locally because they had good specs, look great and the price was right at 20% of current retail... I drove off thru the snow to get them new years day... desperate to hear them in my living room.... i needed an amp IMMEDIATELY... only place open was walmart... they had nothing under $100 that i could even use for a day and toss... so... my sister scanned facebook marketplace and found a Superscope A-225 for $70 10 miles from the walmart...

    Okay... i since have purchased a Schiit Bifrost Multibit DAC, some good descent cables, a laptop and have JRiver installed.

    Don't think the Superscope is the best solution... basically 5 watts RMS per channel and i hear clipping once i get to above 80 decibels.. but have to admit it sounds damn nice at normal volumes... the bass may be a little understated... but perhaps that's the speakers...

    I have eclectic musical tastes... wagner to disco... choral to new age to R&B.... not big on hard rock... hate metal, despise rap and become nauseous if forced to listen to reggae or Mexican ranchero for more than 5 minutes. While i have no need to shake the walls on a regular basis... sometimes volume is needed... the walls be damned.

    Listen to mostly digital... maybe one day i might get into vinyl.. but not critical now.

    So... I need recommendations on an amp... plug and go for under $1000.. vintage or new... sound quality for the money is the criteria...

    Any and all advice appreciated. The specs for the Speakers are 27Hz - 40Khz, Sensitivity: 97db, 9 or 6 Ohms. Pic attached. The specs of my current little Superscope A-225 are also attached as well as a cute ad i found from 1973 where the Superscope was on sale for $69... funny since i paid $70.

    Thx

    Jeff
     

    Attached Files:

     

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  2. Yamaki

    Yamaki Not For Hire Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,201
    Location:
    Hillsboro, Oregon
    Looks like that Superscope held it's value pretty well! :D

    Do you want or need more than 2 channel operation? I was shopping for a simple system to set up for my sister and found a very nice, well made Onkyo AVR for less than $100 on my local Craigslist. It's going to be a TV and music listening system. Eventually she may want to add a DVD player but for now, it's just streaming and cable for her at this point.

    My point is there are lots to choose from out there, new and old. You might want to go listen to a few at a big box store in your area to get some ideas on what sounds better.

    Brands to check out, IMHO, are Marantz, Denon, Onkyo & Yamaha.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    I dont really think i need anything more than stereo... and since it will be in the living room looking nice is also a plus... funny i have an Onkyo AVR that i bought on ebay a few yrs back with a Klipsch quintet speaker set.. the onkyo AVR was so damn complicated that i almost lit it on fire... it reprogrammed itself constantly... screwing up digital sources and i could never get all he speakers to work.. i am sure i bought a lemon but... boy was it frustrating...

    While it may seem irrational... music is music... movies are movies.. would prefer a system just for my music... i'll get around to dealing with video and surround sound at later date.

    I think i am a bit partial to vintage stuff but would consider new... also the big box stores are not going to be able to really show me what works well with my speakers... so what i need is a suggestions for high efficiency speakers... while they are by no means top of the line speakers... they should be descent at $6500 a pair retail... so I need an amp to do them justice.
     
  4. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    There are too many options of course... been considering Marantz 22XX (50 watts plus per channel), Marantz 18 or 19 (both over my budget once serviced), HK Citation II with a passive preamp (also over budget of course), a NAD C320BEE, Rega Brio... also perhaps one of the new chinese tube amps... (like a Yaqin KT88 or variant)....
     
  5. joekapahulu

    joekapahulu Active Member

    Messages:
    262
    Location:
    Honolulu, HI
    Id look for a Marantz pm8004-8006 integrated. I have an 8005 from 2016. $1000 new with 75wrms into 8 ohms, tone controls and direct bypass, remote, made in the Japan Reference factory.8004 was the first model and the 8006 just came out recently. Very nice sounding amp with detail and some warmth. It is the first modern amp I have along with updated McIntosh vintage gear and other gear from 15 years ago or longer. Check out accessories4less.com for good deals on them. Lots of reviews online. Another option is newer Yamaha integrates.. Very well made and great sound. Modern gear is just as good as vintage if you do your homework. Other good offerings, Rega Brio, Creek, Heed Elixir. Look on AK for reviews discussion on small form factor amps.
     
    Jeff Vitale likes this.
  6. Grenadeslio

    Grenadeslio Super Member

    Messages:
    2,798
    Kenwood KA-7100, awesome integrated who's reputation is growing that won't hurt the wallet too much, but the secret is out so prices are rising.

    kenwood_ka-7100_front.jpg
     
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  7. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    The Kenwood KA-7100 has nice specs... what would be a fair price for a restored/re-capped one, in your opinion?
     
  8. Grenadeslio

    Grenadeslio Super Member

    Messages:
    2,798
    Pristine untouched if patient as low as $170, fully restored $300ish, though worth a lot more in either case. All prices plus shipping, just checked eBay and there are a number of options.

    The one including the handles looks nice, the handles sell for $100-$150 alone. I usually like to see a bit more info in the ad than "it works", communication is key.

    Screenshot_2018-01-26-09-34-27.png
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2018
  9. sgleich

    sgleich Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    545
    Location:
    Chicago Burbs
    Hk pm665 integrated? These can still be had at a decent price. They are escalating however now. 100wpc dual mono.
     
  10. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    Thx for the tip. Anyway found a PM-645vsi on ebay (smaller than what u suggested... only 60 wpc but killer specs). Should be fine for my speakers since they are high efficiency. Am currently using a superscope A225 at 5 WPC and it gets fairly loud without clipping. Seller says the PM-645vsi is in good working order with new gold plated Dahlquist terminals because one of the originals was broken... anyway was $92 including shipping figured what the heck... great place to start!
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2018
  11. sgleich

    sgleich Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    545
    Location:
    Chicago Burbs
    Let us know how you like it. They have that clean HK sound.
     

     

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  12. Jeff Vitale

    Jeff Vitale AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Newaygo, MI
    will do...
     

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