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Matt1150
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Amp recommendation for SF Toy Towers

I would like to replace the Denon AVR 1913 (90w @ 8 ohms) I am currently using to power my Sonus Faber Toy Towers. The speakers are rated at 8 ohm nominal with a sensitivity of 89 db. I like to listen to the blues and guitar driven rock at mostly medium, sometimes loud listening levels. I run WAV files with JRiver through a Musical Fidelity V DAC Mk II. I tend to avoid overly bright Systems, this is why I liked the speakers and DAC. I also have no need for another AVR and want a two channel amp.

My room is 25'x30' with the speakers on the short wall, carpet, usual living room furniture, tall ceiling (16') with a wood ceiling.

My local audio stores don't carry many amplifiers that I could demo, so I'm curious if anyone who has experience with these speakers may be able to recommend an integrated or separate stereo amp/preamp that would pair well with the speakers, room layout and my listening habits. I am looking to spend under $2,000 but would consider spending more if there is a magical combination out there. Thanks in advance!

Matt1150
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More info

Ok, maybe throwing some options out there would help...

Vincent SV 236 MkII integrated, 150w at 8 ohms, I found a demo for sale

Creek 5350, 120w at 8 ohms

Musical Fidelity M3i, 80w or so at 8 ohms 

Krell S-300i, 150w and on sale for $1,795

a Rega or Naim? A  lower power Simaudio?

the Primare 32i?

I have heard that SF speakers are demanding and I should be looking at an amp with over 100w, is this a good recommendation?

Bill B
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Spkrs

That's a lot of cubic feet in that room. So yes, 100 wpc at least. 

 

I like the Vincent. 

Allen Fant
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The Toy sounds excellent w/

The Toy sounds excellent w/ Rogue Audio gear. Happy Listening!

commsysman
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AMPLIFIER

The Vincent, Musical Fidelity, and Krell amplifiers should all sound very good and have plenty of power.

Overly bright is what I would expect to hear from Denon or Onkyo or Pioneer; that is what I always hear when a friend is unfortunate enough to have one of those amps or AVRs.

That Denon amp may be rated to put out 90 watts per channel to an 8 ohm RESISTOR on a test bench (which is plenty for your speakers), but when driving actual SPEAKERS the distortion will be far more than one wants to listen to. Better-quality amplifiers such as Musical Fidelity  and Krell have much more robust power supplies, which allow them to drive the inductance and capcitance of real speakers with much lower distortion. That is why they cost a lot more.

There are lots of integrated amplifiers that are well-designed and are only rated at 50 watts and would sound great driving your speakers. On the other hand, I can show you amplifiers and AVRs that can deliver 150 watts or more to an 8 ohm RESISTOR and still sound like crap driving most speakers.

Power is not the issue. Shopping for an amplifier by looking at power ratings is foolish, because they do not tell you how much distortion will be there when driving real speaker systems. There are no specs for that, and that is what counts.

I am selling one of my homes, as I am retired and downsizing things in general.

I have already sold off some speakers and other gear, but I do have a Musical Fidelity M3i that I am going to put up for sale. I will let it go for $950. It is an excellent amplifier, like new, and according to independent laboratory tests will put out approximately 100 watts per channel at either 4 or 8 ohms.

I have used it with KEF, PSB and Vandersteen speakers and the sound quality has always been excellent and the power way more than needed. 

That should suit you perfectly, and save you a good bit of money. 

Check out my ad on the AVS Forum Classified section or send me a PM if you are interested in it.

Matt1150
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Follow up

I have found several amps:

the Vincent for $1800 on the net

Krell s300i for $1800 on the net

Peachtree grand integrated x1 locally for $2000

I took the Peachtree home for the weekend and it sounds very good. Lots of punch, wide soundstage, imaging and good detail. I'm leaning this way as I like to buy locally...any comments?

commsysman
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I would vote for the Krell,

I would vote for the Krell, but if you like what you have, you might as well keep it.

Matt1150
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Thanks for the replies! I

Thanks for the replies! I pulled the trigger on the Grand Integrated X1 and am very happy with it!

Bill B
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good choice

u will dig that amp.  Plus it's a DAC and a headphone amp too, nice.

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