DrGregC
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Magnepan 0.7 and PrimaLuna Integrated Amp
commsysman
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DrGregC wrote:

I have always been a Magnepan guy. When my listening space went from my spacious 14 x 26 family room (which also opened into the kitchen) to my 10 x 20 study, I downscaled in every way. For the past 5 years I have been happy listening to the little-known Quad 22L2 speakers with my favorite piece, a PrimaLuna Prologue Premium integrated amp.

I miss the Magnepan sound. I want to believe that my (EL34) 35 watts into 8 ohms can properly power the Magnepan 0.7's in my smaller space. It's a crowded room, with the listening space effectively 10 x 12, and the speakers must be placed along the short wall.

Has anyone tried to run the Magnepan 0.7 (or 1.7) speakers with a PrimaLuna integrated amp?

I find it extremely unlikely that that amplifier will do a good job with the Maggies.

It might be OK if you limit your listening to very low sound levels, but that is a limitation most people would not be happy with.

I suggest that you consider the Musical Fidelity M5 or M6 amplifiers. They have wonderful sound quality and lots of power to drive those speakers.

FrankZ
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I think you are going to be very happy with your Primaluna and 0.7s.

Talking numbers, the 86dB sensitivity 0.7s would rise up to 101 dB max with your current amp, lets say 102 if you put the KT150 tubes. So, if you want to get a max 110dB (concert hall sound pressure) you should get an amplifier able to run at 256 watts. 512 watts for 113dB... In order to find anything close to your amp musical qualities think tenths of thousands $$...
With your Primaluna there is no worry to run it as hard as you like. There is almost nothing you can do to damage it, and saying almost because you can always get a hammer... It will run any speaker you through on it! It will run it without any fatigue up to its limits. If you had a solid state 34 watt amplifier I would recommend you to get more watts too, but for a tube amp you only need a good quality power transformer and forget about watts... and you already have one of the best!
Since you miss the sound of your Magnepan, I’ll take that you are more for the quality than the quantity guy. I think you will just love the combination.
If you need that extra power think of Ayon Orthos XS with KT150.
If you are tired of tubes but you like their sound, consider Pass Labs.

I own the dialogue premium hp integrated with kt150 to run the 500 watt rated B&Ws 803D2 from the 4ohm taps. I can’t be any happier.
Never missed the extra power I had before and every day I enjoy the musicality, the wide stage, airness and body I have now. I listen mostly to classical and so far I have never raised the volume more than 50%, which is very very loud...

My piece of advise is just connect the speakers you like and enjoy them with you excellent amp.
If you miss the extra power you can always upgrade later on.

DrGregC
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FrankZ wrote:

My piece of advise is just connect the speakers you like and enjoy them with you excellent amp. If you miss the extra power you can always upgrade later on.

As a previous owner, I know Magnepan discourages use of subwoofers with their speakers. I have read consistent positive recommendations for use of REL active subwoofers with Magnepan speakers. I actually tried to use the passive Magnepan DWM Bass Panel. It quickly trigged the protection circuitry in the PrimaLuna amp. Not a good match.

Just wondering if adding an active subwoofer might be a better option than upgrading to extra (solid-state) power?

FrankZ
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DrGregC wrote:
FrankZ wrote:

My piece of advise is just connect the speakers you like and enjoy them with you excellent amp. If you miss the extra power you can always upgrade later on.

As a previous owner, I know Magnepan discourages use of subwoofers with their speakers. I have read consistent positive recommendations for use of REL active subwoofers with Magnepan speakers. I actually tried to use the passive Magnepan DWM Bass Panel. It quickly trigged the protection circuitry in the PrimaLuna amp. Not a good match.

Just wondering if adding an active subwoofer might be a better option than upgrading to extra (solid-state) power?

As an owner of Primaluna and Magnepans, did you try to run your panels?
What would be your best thought for prologue premium running the 0.7s?
Which was your amp? Your panels?

I have triggered the protection circuitry of mine too, but I had to crank the volume almost at full playing Craig Armstrong’s “weather storm”. (That is about 110 dB for my setup)

Magnepan encourages quality high power A/B class circuits. Best solution would be few quality separates running such system, but that has it’s $ cost.

So far you seem to be the most experienced answering the original question. What would you think?

DrGregC
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FrankZ wrote:

So far you seem to be the most experienced answering the original question. What would you think?

When I referred to owning Magnepan speakers, I was talking about several years ago. I had MG 3 speakers in a large space, being driven nicely by a high-current Mark-Levinson amp.

I am now in a small space. I heard the 0.7 speakers driven by a PrimaLuna amp recently in a dealer showroom. Fantastic sound at moderate levels but little, if any, real bass. When we added the DWM panel, the amp shut down. We did not try the 0.7's with an active subwoofer.

I am not the expert. That is why I am asking the questions! Lol...

bierfeldt
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The 0.7 is a wonderful speaker but what you are hearing in lack of bass has nothing to do with the amp and more to do with that speaker having a frequency response that goes to about 50hz. You will need a subwoofer for better bass response and the key to integration is that it needs to be sealed and high power.

Rel makes wonderful subs but they are expensive to connect if you don't have an RCA subwoofer output because you are forced to use the Neutrik Speakon connector which is like a $450 cable.

Sunfire's HRS line is similarly priced and has speaker level inputs which would make it much easier / less expensive to connect.

If you attach Maggies to a PrimLuna it will need to be attached to the 4 ohm outputs and if it delivers adequate volume for you, then you are good. Using 50% of the amps power, you would deliver 96.7dB at 8' That should be uncomfortably loud.

DrGregC
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bierfeldt wrote:

The 0.7 is a wonderful speaker but what you are hearing in lack of bass has nothing to do with the amp and more to do with that speaker having a frequency response that goes to about 50hz. You will need a subwoofer for better bass response and the key to integration is that it needs to be sealed and high power.

Thank you! That is exactly the answer to my question. I think my logical step is to purchase the Magnepan 0.7 speakers and insert them into my current system with the PrimaLuna. As I understand it, the 0.7 is not less of a speaker than its larger brothers, just smaller. I wish I had room for the 1.7.

If lack of drive and/or lack of bass becomes a problem, I will reluctantly consider Plan B - replacing the PrimaLuna amp with an integrated that drives the speakers better and has a line-level subwoofer output to give me that option as well. Just from reading, it seems like the Rogue Sphinx, Hegel H80, and Naim 5si will be on my short list.

https://www.stereophile.com/content/gramophone-dreams-5-page-2

bierfeldt
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You need to ask PrimaLuna but you can potentially just run a second set of speaker wires from the back of your PrimaLuna to the speaker level inputs on a sub. So long as the PrimaLuna is "internally common grounded" it is perfectly safe. I did this with my Rega Brio R and I currently do this with my Rogue Audio Medusa power amp. Send PrimaLuna or Kevin Deal at Upscale Audio an e-mail and confirm that it is okay. The sub draws only a tiny amount of power and has no impact on the performance of your amp.

There is an argument to be made that using speaker level inputs delivers better sound than a dedicated subwoofer output because you are sending the same signal to the speakers and the subwoofer. Also, there is the potential that depending on the sub, the crossover on the sub will be bypassed via the RCA input and works with the speaker level input.

DrGregC
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"A subwoofer would certainly be a great option to achieve what you're aiming for, in my opinion. The lack of a subwoofer output is no problem, as many of the best subs have what are called high-level (or speaker-level) inputs. All you need to hook these subs to your ProLogue Premium is another pair of speaker cable (so you have one pair running from the amp to the speakers, the other pair from the amp to the sub). This is actually the optimal way to connect a subwoofer into any two-channel system, as it ensures the sub is seeing the same exact signal as your main speakers. The sub gets all the same coloration from your amp as the speakers, creating greater synergy.

One brand in particular that I think work exceptionally well with PrimaLuna is REL. They sound great, they're easy to use and have a wide variety of models and sizes to fit any room or budget."

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I know this is an old post but I thought I would chime in. I am running the .7's with a set of 2 Klipsch 10" subs. One of the Klipsch I bought now in the early 2000's and I just bought the same model on ebay for $160 shipped. They sound great with the .7's, and I have a pretty big room (15x30). I am sure the REL is better, but in a small room you might be able to get away with less.

Also, I am running 200 WPC on a Mcintosh and I want it louder. I love the sound out of the Maggies but they sure want a lot of current! (See my post in the newbie section).

-Geoff

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