Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation

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wowyahoo

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Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« on: 26 Dec 2017, 06:09 pm »
Hello everyone,

Through research looking for lush mids, something sounding similar to the LCD-3, I came across Omega speakers. I have a pair of Ascend Sierra-2 ribbon speakers, but the mids aren't as lush as I like. With that being said, I am looking for an amp under $500 that will match well with the SAMs. No DIY kits.

Thank you.

rghanbari

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #1 on: 26 Dec 2017, 07:52 pm »
I'm new to this high efficiency speaker world, but the Bantam Gold is absolutely lovely with the SAMs.  I'm eager to hear other recommendations on this thread.  Me and my friends are driving the SAMs and CAMs direct from our DACs (Chord DAVE and Hugo2), but there are times when the music really demands a beefy amp behind the Omegas, but one that doesn't get in way of the remarkable dynamics and transparency that the Chord DACs and Omegas are capable of.

nature boy

Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #2 on: 26 Dec 2017, 08:05 pm »
I understand that Steve Deckert (Decware) is currently developing a 25th Anniversary Zen amp.  This will be his attempt at the ultimate 2-watt SET amplifier.  I plan to order one to use with my Omega SAHO XRS speakers.  More info is available on the Decware forum "new developments" section.  The amps will include top notch VCAP Teflon capacitors.

Louis's Omega speakes's have  great synergy with Decware amps.  Not sure of the pricing and availability yet, Steve has been working on this new amp for over a month to get the voicing perfect.  The VCAP's take a while to settle in.

If it were me, I'd save up your shillings and buy one of these very special amplifiers.  They are sure to become a treasured item.

NB

Vlad

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #3 on: 26 Dec 2017, 08:17 pm »
I would recommend Gemtune APPJ1501 SEP amp - it is reasonably priced (I bought it from massdrop a little cheaper) and it has great synergy with SAMs:
https://www.amazon.com/Gemtune-PA1501A-amplifier-6AD10-black/dp/B00X5ECQ4Q/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1514319097&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=6ad10+amp

If you don't like tubes, many people here recommend class D amps (e.g. fleawatt, etc.) - they are in the same price range and sound supposedly as good as tube amps (may be even better).

Vlad


guillaume bougard

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #4 on: 7 Jan 2018, 06:01 pm »
one amp that really surprised me (in a good way!) is the Audioengine N22

https://www.amazon.com/Audioengine-N22-Desktop-Audio-Amplifier/dp/B0049OI08W/ref=sr_1_13?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1515347975&sr=1-13&keywords=audioengine

then check out Fleawatt

http://fleawatt.blogspot.fr/

marvelous, not costly, super sound

charmerci

Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #5 on: 7 Jan 2018, 06:36 pm »

then check out Fleawatt

http://fleawatt.blogspot.fr/

marvelous, not costly, super sound

Nix that - from his blog.
 Fleawatt Hiatus    I've decided to take a break from manufacturing audio wares for others.  I may or may not continue in the future.  Thank you to all who have purchased amplifiers from me over the last several years.  I will continue to perform any warranty work on any of the amplifiers I've produced.

pstrisik

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #6 on: 7 Jan 2018, 07:00 pm »
Something to consider.  A pair of Pass designed, Class A, 8 watt, monoblocs.  :D

http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=154715.0

.......Peter

OzarkTom

Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #7 on: 7 Jan 2018, 09:11 pm »
Audio Nirvana recommends and sells these budget amps for full range speakers.

http://www.commonsenseaudio.com/nirvanaamps.html

Canada Rob

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #8 on: 8 Jan 2018, 04:45 pm »
The Glow Audio Amp One is a great little amp and would be a great match for your SAMs.  They are on sale right now at a ridiculously good price.

See link: http://www.glow-audio.com/getglowamp1.html

JeffofArabica

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #9 on: 10 Jan 2018, 03:30 am »
I understand that Steve Deckert (Decware) is currently developing a 25th Anniversary Zen amp.  This will be his attempt at the ultimate 2-watt SET amplifier.  I plan to order one to use with my Omega SAHO XRS speakers.  More info is available on the Decware forum "new developments" section.  The amps will include top notch VCAP Teflon capacitors.

Louis's Omega speakes's have  great synergy with Decware amps.  Not sure of the pricing and availability yet, Steve has been working on this new amp for over a month to get the voicing perfect.  The VCAP's take a while to settle in.

If it were me, I'd save up your shillings and buy one of these very special amplifiers.  They are sure to become a treasured item.

NB

I second this.  I am running the Decware Zen Mystery Amp (ZMA) with my SAHOs and it is truly a match made in heaven! 

I will ABSOLUTELY be order the 25th Anniversary Zen Amp from Decware, but I am afraid it will not be a "budget" amp for those looking for something sub $1K.  It will likely be $3K+ based on recent statements from owner Steve Deckert.  But that being said, based on what I have read, it will be worth every penny!  I will purchase this amp with 100% certainly and look forward to the comparison with my ZMA. 

The Decware/Omega synergy is well documented and cannot be denied. 

guillaume bougard

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #10 on: 11 Jan 2018, 09:37 pm »
At 3K, there has to be other options. 2Wpc is not that much and one can get to that limit quite quickly.
For that money, you get a nice refurbished Eico HF81 or even a refurbished McIntosh or a Solid state amp from audio gd that absolutely kicks massive ass. I know they are chinese, but I got one when I heard what they could do at a friends of mine.

rodge827

Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #11 on: 11 Jan 2018, 11:45 pm »
Here is a nice little 50w amp that some have said outplays other tpa3xxx amps:

https://www.allo.com/sparky/volt-plus-stepped-attenuator.html


sean619

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #12 on: 26 Jan 2018, 07:24 am »
Nix that - from his blog.
 Fleawatt Hiatus    I've decided to take a break from manufacturing audio wares for others.  I may or may not continue in the future.  Thank you to all who have purchased amplifiers from me over the last several years.  I will continue to perform any warranty work on any of the amplifiers I've produced.

His casework was really cool and unique, but was he really doing anything other than adding a nice volume pot and quality binding posts? :scratch: Nobsound does dual TPA-3116 for $30 delivered complete with case, inputs, etc.

Anyway, I have tried Rega Brio R, Audioengine N22, and Musical Paradise MP-301 MK3 with my Super 3 XRS and can confirm that they are wonderful budget amps with the RS5.

JLM

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #13 on: 26 Jan 2018, 11:29 am »
I'm a 'speaker guy' but leery of going super cheap and/or tiny on the amp for $2000/pair speakers.  Sure it will "work" and you'll be able to "get by" but you'd be wasting the full potential of the speaker.  You want an amp that has enough muscle to provide a commanding grip on the speaker (beefy power supply, which shouldn't be cheap) to provide the full power/dynamics the speaker is capable of.  Quality amps will reveal the detail, timbre, and imaging that your nice speakers are capable of. 

macdane

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #14 on: 26 Jan 2018, 08:53 pm »
I second this.  I am running the Decware Zen Mystery Amp (ZMA) with my SAHOs and it is truly a match made in heaven! 

I will ABSOLUTELY be order the 25th Anniversary Zen Amp from Decware, but I am afraid it will not be a "budget" amp for those looking for something sub $1K.  It will likely be $3K+ based on recent statements from owner Steve Deckert.  But that being said, based on what I have read, it will be worth every penny!  I will purchase this amp with 100% certainly and look forward to the comparison with my ZMA. 

The Decware/Omega synergy is well documented and cannot be denied.

I'll second Jeff's "second" of the Decware Anniversary amp. I've only been lurking while he's been pretty active on the thread:

http://www.decware.com/cgi-bin/yabb22/YaBB.pl?num=1408725911/550

I absolutely dare you to read through that and not immediately start counting your nickels.

Dane

Canada Rob

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #15 on: 26 Jan 2018, 10:15 pm »
Seems like my recommendation of the Glow Amp One was ignored.  I have experience with this amp and it would be a great match for any Omega and at 5w/ch easily has enough power to drive the SAMs.  The OP also said his price was $500 and I can't think of a better amp in that price range than the Glow at $580 on sale.  Glow also stands behind their product.  I have no affiliation with any brand anymore as I have shut down my audio business, so "business bias" is out of the picture.

JB2386

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #16 on: 28 Jan 2018, 04:21 am »
Give the Vista Audio Spark amp a whirl, mine is currently being used to power EB Acoustic EB1’s in a desktop setup with ease.  I had it pushing my Omega SAM’s prior to its duties as a desktop amp and it was pretty amazing for $349!!!!  The guys (Boris) are very attentive and will answer any questions you have and ship your amp promptly from their NY location.
 
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=GERhpHTYXOE
http://vertyaudio.com/vista-audio.html

sean619

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #17 on: 29 Jan 2018, 02:14 am »
Seems like my recommendation of the Glow Amp One was ignored.  I have experience with this amp and it would be a great match for any Omega and at 5w/ch easily has enough power to drive the SAMs.  The OP also said his price was $500 and I can't think of a better amp in that price range than the Glow at $580 on sale.  Glow also stands behind their product.  I have no affiliation with any brand anymore as I have shut down my audio business, so "business bias" is out of the picture.

I considered the Glow One but went with the Musical Paradise MP-301 MK3.
It has more power (6.5 watt SEP vs 5 watts SEP)
A heavier output transformer. Amp weighs 7 pounds more than the Glow 1
The cost was about half as much.
Designed and sold by a Canuck!!
The Glow One is all point to point wiring which is super cool, although there is debate about whether or not this is a benefit. 
   

Canada Rob

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #18 on: 29 Jan 2018, 07:41 pm »
sean619,

I forgot about the MP301.  Everywhere I've read it gets good reports, and it appears to be a great bargain, and yes it's price is considerably less than the Glow, even with the Glow on sale.

Point to point wiring has 4 advantages over PC board mounted tube sockets, not that any of them are necessarily a deal breaker:

1) No heat bleed into a circuit board from the tube sockets.
2) No flexing of the circuit board when tube rolling, as the tube sockets are chassis mounted.
3) The point to point wires are likely a larger gauge than the traces on a circuit board, not to mention much more robust.
4) Point to point wired amps are easier to modify.

Keep in mind the Glow Amp One is an $840USD amp on sale at $580USD whereas the MP301 is about $350USD regular price.  I will hazard to say the Glow is in a different class than the MP301 (having never heard the MP301).

Also, output transformer size is not everything, but design is.  Decware's OPTs on their low powered sets are quite small compared to some other brands, but to this day they are my reference how an amp should sound - absolutely incredible.

sean619

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Re: Super Alnico Monitor - budget amp recommendation
« Reply #19 on: 30 Jan 2018, 12:39 am »
sean619,

I forgot about the MP301.  Everywhere I've read it gets good reports, and it appears to be a great bargain, and yes it's price is considerably less than the Glow, even with the Glow on sale.

Point to point wiring has 4 advantages over PC board mounted tube sockets, not that any of them are necessarily a deal breaker:

1) No heat bleed into a circuit board from the tube sockets.
2) No flexing of the circuit board when tube rolling, as the tube sockets are chassis mounted.
3) The point to point wires are likely a larger gauge than the traces on a circuit board, not to mention much more robust.
4) Point to point wired amps are easier to modify.

Keep in mind the Glow Amp One is an $840USD amp on sale at $580USD whereas the MP301 is about $350USD regular price.  I will hazard to say the Glow is in a different class than the MP301 (having never heard the MP301).

Also, output transformer size is not everything, but design is.  Decware's OPTs on their low powered sets are quite small compared to some other brands, but to this day they are my reference how an amp should sound - absolutely incredible.

Hi Rob. I suspect that the extra labor cost involved with point to point is also reflected in the price. Although the Baby Sophia Electric II amp (5 watt SEP) is not point to point and costs more than both amps. Like Decware, it is assembled in America.
It doesn't appear that the Musical Paradise amp is skimping on parts. Alps volume pot and switch, US Military Vishay Dale resistors. RIFA 450, Rubycon, Philips BC and Nichicon capacitors.
He doesn't appear to be marking up the price of the amp much at all. I know that he has a day job.