I was going to post a review of the A-S3000 in it's own thread but I'd rather not since we are all fans of the A-S2000 and folks who are more focused on the Yamaha badge and not the sound don't deserve to know what they are missing. ***Correction*** I'll just post this in the Yamaha section so Yamaha fans can check out their current flagship 2 channel amplifier. I just received the Yamaha A-S3000 and I will be auditioning it to replace my A-S2000. The A-S2000 amplifiers reviewed well a few years back and are built to last a couple lifetimes. They have a "retro" or austere appearance that suits their quiet confidence and ability. I'm the kind of stereo enthusiast who enjoys listening to his recordings and likes for equipment to get out of the way. I began my 2 channel system around an A-S700 and found that I thoroughly enjoyed the naturalness of the A-S series. I tried slightly warmer speakers (B&W CM1, CM5, And Vienna Acoustics Bach Grand, and Hayden Grand) and I could note the nuances of the speakers design. As I moved to less sensitive ATC speakers (SCM11 and SCM40--though they aren't as insanely insensitive as some would suggest), I moved up to the A-S2000 and was rewarded with significantly more headroom and an amplifier that is built like a tank and gets better and better every time you listen to it. My most recent long-term floor speaker is the Yamaha NS1000. This speaker is well-known for its accuracy and I think that the ebony version I own is a work of art. My problem has been that I've needed a subwoofer to augment the low frequency response of the NS1000 and I get very tired of the long process of finding the optimal settings and location for a sub only to have new music show up the challenges of subwoofer integration. Having owned the ATC SCM40, I know that speakers that need high current AND high damping factor from and amplifier can get an undeserved reputation for being bass shy. I suspected that more was possible from the NS1000 with a slightly warmer amplifier and higher damping factor. The A-S3000 with its MOSFETS and high damping factor (250) seemed like exactly what I was after. First impressions: I'll just share that I opened the box and had the amplifier running in no time. If you're familiar with the Yamaha A-S line, this amplifier is only 4 lbs heavier than the A-S2000 at 54.2 lbs. Not sure why I was expecting heavier--possibly that huge dent in my checking account. Updated picture. Bought a silver unit to match my Sony HAP-Z1ES The sound has been amazing so far. Significantly more focused imaging, the soundstage gets a little beyond the NS1000's and that is a feat as they don't generally do a very wide soundstage. The soundstage is deeper and the damping factor is clearly gripping the woofer more effectively. I could actually see life without a subwoofer as the low frequency is now properly integrated with the high and mid and increases/decreases proportionately with volume. 20 hours in: I'm now wishing I'd never ordered or heard of the A-S3000. It slightly better than the A-S2000 out of the box and after a few days, at least with the NS1000's, I'm blown away. It doesn't do one thing better than the A-S2000, depending on your speakers, every aspect is better. The imaging is much better, the sound-stage is a little less fenced-in by the edges of the speakers but I can hear much more the placement of instruments within that sound-stage. A few of my current favorites for reference: Gregory Porter - Liquid Spirit LP, 16/44 ALAC, 24/96 FLAC Erin Bode - Over and Over 16/44 FLAC, Kat Edmonson - Way Down Low 16/44 FLAC James Taylor - Gorilla 24/96 FLAC Cassandra Wilson - New Moon Daughter 24/96 FLAC Michael Franks - Every CD he's every done The part that is just head and shoulders above the A-S2000 is the power, control and tiny dash of warmth. The amp drives the hard to grip woofers to the point that I don't need subwoofers at all and there may be too much low frequency for my space. Anyone who's heard NS1000's on a few different amps knows that too much low frequency in reference to the NS1000's is unheard of. One review I read noted a tube-like sound of the A-S3000 and I would think that that may be the case with warmer sounding speakers. I'd bet that this amp would be amazing with the SCM40's. (Also, the ATC SCM19 is almost a perfect match for the A-S2000 if you like neutral and a great mid range.) The part that I'm really loving about not needing a subwoofer is that I was never able to match a subwoofers levels in a way that it sounded spot on at every volume. The subwoofer would nearly power off at my evening listening level and then get boomy if I went higher than my usual volume. That was more an issue with my B&W ASW610 than the PV1 or PV1D but it was still audible. The A-S3000 may be a modern-day Yamaha B2 in pairing so seamlessly with the NS1000. Thoughts heading into week two of my demo period: I'm getting a little anxious about keeping it as it was so much more expensive than comparable McIntosh gear. The good thing is that but for the A-S2000 sitting on my coffee table, I doubt that my wife would have noticed it. Much less flashy than McIntosh but it sounds every bit the "flagship" label. I just ordered a Sony TA-A1ES just to be certain that the FET's and class A/B on that amp can't achieve anything like what I'm hearing from the A-S3000. Gotta have a ton of equipment around to overlap these trial periods. If the Sony is even nearly as good as the A-S2000 but a hair warmer and able to move the NS1000 woofer, I'll just keep the Sony for the NS1000's, send the A-S3000 packing, and put the A-S2000's and B&W PM1's in another room. Not sure I can go back to the A-S2000 after this: Also, just for the sake of matching every speaker I have on hand with every amp--something I learned when I sold a set of speakers unopened to preserve the value rather than trying them out with amps I had on hand--I tried the B&W PM1 and KEF LS50 with the A-S3000. My impressions was almost the opposite of the comparison I posted in another thread (PM1 > LS50 with A-S2000). I found that most of my "problems" with the LS50's went away with the A-S3000 and the PM1's were barely listenable. I guess I would say that the LS50's sounded like a class A speaker while the A-S3000 sounded a little trapped behind the PM1's. Mind you, I only tried this for a few hours... NS1000's were doing things I'd never heard so I consider that three hours a sacrifice for the community.