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  1. #1
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    Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Going back to my Pass X250, I enjoyed that amp and the sound, however, moved to Levinson liking the sharper leading edges and quicker response better.

    There are characters of the Coda 8 that are better than my Levinson, more intelligible vocals and better detail in some aspects overall, it's just as fast, yet there is something I still likeabout listening to the Levinson better. The Coda has such a quiet background you'd have to hear it to believe.

    I am mad at myself it takes me so long to figure these things out, now I am not able to return the 8. I'm going to try to get $5k back out of it, not even 120 days yet.

    The real mystery to me is what is it I can't fully enjoy the 8, it's a great amp by anyone's standards. The 8 version I have is Class A for the first 12 watts, I'm wondering if I have an issue that I am one who may not prfer Class A. I don't like overly aggressive amps either. I guess we all have our sweet spot.

    I also listen to a wide variety of music so amps that may excel on certain genres would present an issue for me.
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  2. #2
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    For those of us old enough to remember, the original Mr. Peabody had something called a Wayback Machine for time travel. Pretty sure that could solve the problem.

    Just having a little fun, I donít mean to belittle your problem. I hope youíre able to find a good solution.
    Gary
    Main: Lumin A1, Accuphase E-650, Tannoy Canterbury GR, Shunyata, Audience
    Secondary: Lumin M1, Linton Heritage, Shunyata, Audience

  3. #3
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Even the Pass AB amps have some class A output. The X250.8 leaves class A at about 16 watts according to the spec sheets.


    https://www.passlabs.com/wp-content/...t8_specs_6.pdf
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  4. #4
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Having heard your Levinson/JBL set up I am somewhat familiar with that sonic presentation.
    Reading your many post, it is clear that your taste runs more towards the accurate than the romantic.
    I have found class A to offer a somewhat sweeter and more mid hall presentation. More similar to tubes.
    And I can see where this Coda amp is a deviation from your preferred voicing.
    I had a Coda amp a while back and sent it back to the factory to have the bias adjusted, making it a little more dynamic. It did help
    but overall it was not a keeper in my system.
    Hope you can get out of this without too much pain.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Gary, the Wayback would certainly fix things.

    Joe, I probably didn't explain myself well enough. I knew the Pass was Class A up to a point, I was trying to show I moved on from the Pass to the 532h, some Class A to an amp with very little.

    Dave,I suspect you nailed it. Liking a more accurate amp and keeping with one that won't offend leaves a narrow field. Or, high price tag, LOL
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  6. #6
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Ah, yes, sorry I misunderstood.

    Sorry you arenít crazy about the Coda.
    Vienna Acoustics Haydn Jubilee, Wharfedale Linton w/ stands, Klipsch RB-75, Klipsch RP-160M.

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  7. #7
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by joeinid View Post
    Even the Pass AB amps have some class A output. The X250.8 leaves class A at about 16 watts according to the spec sheets.


    https://www.passlabs.com/wp-content/...t8_specs_6.pdf

    Wow, that chart showing the 250.8 to leave Class A contradicts other reported spec's stating it runs in Class A for the first 25 wpc.

    Mr. P., I have wrestled with do I want a very detailed system or one a little more rounded like my X250. It is a trade off for sure. On well recorded music, I like the extra detail but in the long run I find the Pass sound more listenable over a long period of time. I guess you can get a little extra detail with a DAC and/or preamp. The type of music player also plays a role. I use Audirvana or Hysolid for general listening and ease of use but for critical listening I go back to the the pain in the ass to use BugHead which sounds fabulous and detailed and is very tunable. As I have gotten older my tastes are for excellent tone and a romantic midrange vs extreme detail.

    My son is dealing with the same issue. He recently bought a Cary SI-300.2d integrated which sounds fabulous by the way but at RMAF last year he heard the Primare Prisma I35 integrated which was hyper detailed and now wonders if he made a mistake.
    My Gear- Mains System-Pass X250 amp, BAT VK-51se preamp, Luxman DA-06 DAC, Magnepan 1.6's, Thorens TD-145 TT, Dual Martin Logan Subs, Vintage Luxman T-110 Tuner, Other systems- Parasound A21 amp,Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid tube DAC and Preamp, Magnepan MMG's, Monitor Audio S1's, PSB B6's, Def Tech Pro Monitor 1000's, Velodyne sub, Adcom GFR-700 AVR, Music Hall 25.2 modified CDP, Cables by Cardas Parsec, AQ Columbia DBS 72v, Wire World.

  8. #8
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I think I agree with you, although my experience of Class A amps stretches to just 2.

    The Sugden Masterclass FPA-4 and Accuphase A-36. The former was a non-starter but the Accuphase is a wonderful amp that I kept for a couple of years before deciding that it was a little less involving or exciting than what I was looking for in an amp.

    Amongst many A/B amps I've tried over the last couple of years, the new Mark Levinson 5805 was very civilised and nice sounding but I passed on that in the end. I found the GamuT D200 Mk III a better listen but sadly is was far too uncivilised in that it had no speaker protection relays so gave my 107dB speakers a most unwelcome thump on power up and down.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    might not be helpful to your situation, but two thoughts that occurred to me:

    sometimes my listening preferences/impressions are time and mood dependent... maybe give it a few weeks and switch the coda 8 back into your system and see if you still feel the same?

    also, not to open up another rabbit hole but if you would like to keep the coda 8 for it's properties that you like then maybe a tube pre-amp would get you where you need to be in terms the overall sound having the right amount of politeness?
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  10. #10
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechnutt View Post
    Wow, that chart showing the 250.8 to leave Class A contradicts other reported spec's stating it runs in Class A for the first 25 wpc.

    Mr. P., I have wrestled with do I want a very detailed system or one a little more rounded like my X250. It is a trade off for sure. On well recorded music, I like the extra detail but in the long run I find the Pass sound more listenable over a long period of time. I guess you can get a little extra detail with a DAC and/or preamp. The type of music player also plays a role. I use Audirvana or Hysolid for general listening and ease of use but for critical listening I go back to the the pain in the ass to use BugHead which sounds fabulous and detailed and is very tunable. As I have gotten older my tastes are for excellent tone and a romantic midrange vs extreme detail.

    My son is dealing with the same issue. He recently bought a Cary SI-300.2d integrated which sounds fabulous by the way but at RMAF last year he heard the Primare Prisma I35 integrated which was hyper detailed and now wonders if he made a mistake.
    Hi, Mechnutt. I see this post is quite awhile ago but the issue or "detail" versus "round" has been quite relevant for me recently. Reading the objectivist hype over at Audio Science Review I decided to try Purifi 1ET400A-based amp. I also decided to sell my Pass Labs X150.5 having owned and enjoyed it for several years.

    Well, the Purifi is a champion of resolution, transparency, and dynamics and the expense of being stone cold and highly intolerant of 2nd rate recordings. See my review at Audio Asylum ... REVIEW: VTV Amplifier Purifi 1ET400A Stereo Amplifier (SS) - Feanor - Amp/Preamp Asylum

    My dilema today is whether I ought to retreat to a "rounder" sounding amp or take some other measure to mitigate the coldness of the Purifi. I have tried my Schiit Freya + preamp in Tube v. Passive Mode: this did "round" the presentation a bit plus offered tubes' "holographic" sound. However I quickly found myself missing the full transparency of the straight Purifi. So I'm still wondering what's to do?
    ~ Bill

    Win10/Foobar2000 => Topping D90 DAC => Sonic Frontiers Line 1 preamp => VTV Purifi 1ET400A stereo amp => Zaph ZRT (DIY) speakers + PSB Subsonic 5 subwoofer

  11. #11
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    Well, the Purifi is a champion of resolution, transparency, and dynamics and the expense of being stone cold and highly intolerant of 2nd rate recordings. See my review at Audio Asylum ... REVIEW: VTV Amplifier Purifi 1ET400A Stereo Amplifier (SS) - Feanor - Amp/Preamp Asylum
    My amp (NAD M33) has the latest Purifi Eigentakt module but I wouldn't describe it as "stone cold". Granted it isn't warm like a valve amp, but neither is it cold. For me it offers a good balance with the feeling of the music being "live" rather more than most amps. You describe your amp as being Purifi 1ET400A-based . I thought 1ET400 was a Hypex module, but I'm not expert in these matters.
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  12. #12
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    As Nelson has written about, I think some people prefer 3rd harmonic over 2nd harmonic distortion (ie. me).

    For instance, I don't prefer SET amps - I owned a half dozen of them in my Zu days and this was re-confirmed to a lesser extent with a friend's SIT-3 recently.
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  13. #13
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I run Pass Labs X260.8s monos. They are Class A to 34 watts, then Class A/B. They are absolutely wonderful. If I ever decide upon my new system (COVID listening delays), it could easily include some Pass X600.8s - 100 watts of Class A, then Class A/B.

    For me personally, this gives me the best of both worlds - excellent sound without too much heat. Most Class A amps run too hot for me here in FL, but Class A/B run warm, not hot.
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  14. #14
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    it would take a person with an incredibly acute hearing ability to discern when an amp output stage slides from A to AB while playing program material (IMO its plain BS). I'm agnostic re class of operation, its the SQ that matters most when driving my particular speaker of choice. There are good and bad implementations of Class A design as all the other classes including D.
    "Listening to Analogue music is an act of rebellion in a digital gulag" - Simon Yorke

  15. #15
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by puroagave View Post
    it would take a person with an incredibly acute hearing ability to discern when an amp output stage slides from A to AB while playing program material (IMO its plain BS). I'm agnostic re class of operation, its the SQ that matters most when driving my particular speaker of choice. There are good and bad implementations of Class A design as all the other classes including D.
    I don't recall anyone stating they could hear the slide from Class A to B. However, having more Class A bias does effect the sound of the amp overall. As Pass states on their website, "Like all of the class A/B .8's, this amplifier has some class A bias, rewarding its listeners with a whole new zenith of sound quality."
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  16. #16
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin View Post
    I run Pass Labs X260.8s monos. They are Class A to 34 watts, then Class A/B. They are absolutely wonderful. If I ever decide upon my new system (COVID listening delays), it could easily include some Pass X600.8s - 100 watts of Class A, then Class A/B.

    For me personally, this gives me the best of both worlds - excellent sound without too much heat. Most Class A amps run too hot for me here in FL, but Class A/B run warm, not hot.
    The huge X350.8 ran just to the point of being uncomfortably warm in my LA-based living room. It is regularly 90+ degrees in the Valley summer here. YMMV.
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  17. #17
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by KeithR View Post
    The huge X350.8 ran just to the point of being uncomfortably warm in my LA-based living room. It is regularly 90+ degrees in the Valley summer here. YMMV.
    I've never run a 350.8, but I've heard that the 250.8s run a little warmer than the 260.8s. Uncomfortably warm wouldn't be good for me either - Of course there's a lot of variables to consider such as room size, etc.

    I was talked out of XA200.8s and XA160.8s (Class A) because they get HOT. According to a dealer the 600s about the same temp as the 260.8s. But the Boulder 2150s (Class A) run about the same as the Pass 260s (A/B).
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  18. #18
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin View Post
    I've never run a 350.8, but I've heard that the 250.8s run a little warmer than the 260.8s.
    As an owner of the X260.8's I disagree. Two reasons, first the 260.8 is a mono amp, thus I have two of them and the 250.8 is a stereo amp. Secondly, the 260.8's have the highest amount of initial Class A bias(save the mighty 600) of any of the Pass A/B amps.

    so therefore it's highly unlikely the 250 would run warmer.
    Cheers ! Ö. Dave

  19. #19
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Hear Here View Post
    My amp (NAD M33) has the latest Purifi Eigentakt module but I wouldn't describe it as "stone cold". Granted it isn't warm like a valve amp, but neither is it cold. For me it offers a good balance with the feeling of the music being "live" rather more than most amps. You describe your amp as being Purifi 1ET400A-based . I thought 1ET400 was a Hypex module, but I'm not expert in these matters.
    The 1ET400A is indeed Purifi, not Hypex; it's really just another name for the Eigentakt.

    By the way, the NAD M33 is very impressive in its capabilities.

    That Purifi module is usually coupled to some sort of input buffer that provide a some extra gain. The point is that this buffer can color the sound to some extent. The buffer usually include an op amp but might used a discrete circuit to provide this gain. My VTV amp uses a VTV buffer with at Sparkos SS3062 op amp, while NAD uses its own, proprietary buffer, so it's possible that my amp and your NAD could sound subtly different.

    In any case, I misspoke describing the Purifi as "stone cold": the phrase has too negative a connotation. Rather I should simply have said it that it's not warm.
    ~ Bill

    Win10/Foobar2000 => Topping D90 DAC => Sonic Frontiers Line 1 preamp => VTV Purifi 1ET400A stereo amp => Zaph ZRT (DIY) speakers + PSB Subsonic 5 subwoofer

  20. #20
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikado463 View Post
    As an owner of the X260.8's I disagree. Two reasons, first the 260.8 is a mono amp, thus I have two of them and the 250.8 is a stereo amp. Secondly, the 260.8's have the highest amount of initial Class A bias(save the mighty 600) of any of the Pass A/B amps.

    so therefore it's highly unlikely the 250 would run warmer.
    Interesting. Again, my statement was based upon what I've heard by Pass users in the forums.

    From what I understand with the monos you have a greater overall surface area to help dissipate the heat better. 250.8 (19 x 21.25 x 9) as compared to the 260.8s (19 x 21.25 x 7.5 - *** times two). Everything in the 250.8 is stuck into one box, so wouldn't it feel and run hotter?

    There's only 9 Class A watts difference between the the 250.8 and 260.8. I'm not sure we could tell the heat difference from 9 watts. And the 600s, which have app. triple the Class A watts of the 260s allegedly run about the same temp as the 260.8s. But they also have a larger chassis (19 x 21.5 x 11 - *** times two).

    A question: Would the Power Consumption of both amps make a difference in heat? 250.8 - 450 watts vs the 260.8 at 375 watts.

    IMO, the smaller surface area of a 250.8 may make it feel and run warmer.
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  21. #21
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I may have given the wrong impression of the 8. It could also be wrong of me to stereotype Class A sound.

    I did some more listening today, amp swapping. I stayed withsome favorite Traffic songs which was interestingly really good for the comparison.

    The 8 is just as quic as the 532h and I don't get rounded edges from the 8, in fact, drums were snappy and the bass lines cleaner. The 532h spreads the sound stage out more. The 8 in most aspects provides the most detail. There is just an undeniable synergy between the two Levinson pieces. Or, perhaps the 8 prefers a different preamp. My friend who replaced his Krell KSA-250 with an 8 also has the Coda 07x preamp. I unfortunately have not been able to check his rig out yet.

    I would rather try to sell the 8 opposed to changing my system, another preamp etc.

    I don't think it's Class A of the 8 as much as the tonal character of my system with it in. I can't explain that except it is. Keep in mind I sold a new 50.2 for similar reasons. Similar, for lack of a better word, what was the same I just didn't care for the sound I was getting with it in my system. The 8 is more like it's really good but not to my taste.
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  22. #22
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Calvin have you heard both Pass and Boulder? From the Boulder I've heard the brands have very different presentations. In fact, I was surprised to learn Boulder was Class A.

    I just wondered what your impressions were of the two. Or, anyone else who may have heard both.
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  23. #23
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Calvin have you heard both Pass and Boulder? From the Boulder I've heard the brands have very different presentations. In fact, I was surprised to learn Boulder was Class A.

    I just wondered what your impressions were of the two. Or, anyone else who may have heard both.
    I haven't heard the Boulder yet, only spoken about them with Mike who has me seriously considering the 2150s. It and the MSBs are on my Post-COVID List to listen too.

    A friend who lives about a mile away and posts on this forum just purchased a Boulder stereo amp. He also owns(ed) Pass and Audio Research amps. He has a keen ear and doesn't purchase anything lightly. Unfortunately, he won't have it hooked up until next month when Mike delivers him some new speakers. What a system he will have!!!
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  24. #24
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    It seems it was the older Boulder series I heard, Mike gave a description on another thread.

    I didn't know Ed had such a nice collection. I wonder if he will keep the Soundfield speakers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin View Post
    I haven't heard the Boulder yet, only spoken about them with Mike who has me seriously considering the 2150s. It and the MSBs are on my Post-COVID List to listen too.

    A friend who lives about a mile away and posts on this forum just purchased a Boulder stereo amp. He also owns(ed) Pass and Audio Research amps. He has a keen ear and doesn't purchase anything lightly. Unfortunately, he won't have it hooked up until next month when Mike delivers him some new speakers. What a system he will have!!!
    Aurender ACS10 w/Audioquest Diamond USB,
    Mark Levinson #526, 532h, JBL 4367's
    Clearaudio Performance DC w/Maestro cart
    All Clarus Crimson cabling, AC to binding post. Surgex
    HT: Marantz AV8003, Linn 5125, JBL SAM3ha, Revel s30,
    SVS PC13 Ultra
    Transparent, Analysis Plus & Tributaries. PS Audio filtering
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  25. #25
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    Hi, Mechnutt. I see this post is quite awhile ago but the issue or "detail" versus "round" has been quite relevant for me recently. Reading the objectivist hype over at Audio Science Review I decided to try Purifi 1ET400A-based amp. I also decided to sell my Pass Labs X150.5 having owned and enjoyed it for several years.

    Well, the Purifi is a champion of resolution, transparency, and dynamics and the expense of being stone cold and highly intolerant of 2nd rate recordings. See my review at Audio Asylum ... REVIEW: VTV Amplifier Purifi 1ET400A Stereo Amplifier (SS) - Feanor - Amp/Preamp Asylum

    My dilema today is whether I ought to retreat to a "rounder" sounding amp or take some other measure to mitigate the coldness of the Purifi. I have tried my Schiit Freya + preamp in Tube v. Passive Mode: this did "round" the presentation a bit plus offered tubes' "holographic" sound. However I quickly found myself missing the full transparency of the straight Purifi. So I'm still wondering what's to do?


    Hi Bill,

    You may want to consider a Pass 0.8 series amp which is a different animal from the 0.5 series. Great transparency and sound stage but not sterile sounding. Based on the reviews it may be what you are looking for without sacrificing detail. Another option is to try a Prima Luna tube preamp. Also, a DAC like an Aqua La Voce or an original Chord Hugo may give you what you are looking for.
    My Gear- Mains System-Pass X250 amp, BAT VK-51se preamp, Luxman DA-06 DAC, Magnepan 1.6's, Thorens TD-145 TT, Dual Martin Logan Subs, Vintage Luxman T-110 Tuner, Other systems- Parasound A21 amp,Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid tube DAC and Preamp, Magnepan MMG's, Monitor Audio S1's, PSB B6's, Def Tech Pro Monitor 1000's, Velodyne sub, Adcom GFR-700 AVR, Music Hall 25.2 modified CDP, Cables by Cardas Parsec, AQ Columbia DBS 72v, Wire World.

  26. #26
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin View Post
    Interesting. Again, my statement was based upon what I've heard by Pass users in the forums.

    From what I understand with the monos you have a greater overall surface area to help dissipate the heat better. 250.8 (19 x 21.25 x 9) as compared to the 260.8s (19 x 21.25 x 7.5 - *** times two). Everything in the 250.8 is stuck into one box, so wouldn't it feel and run hotter?

    There's only 9 Class A watts difference between the the 250.8 and 260.8. I'm not sure we could tell the heat difference from 9 watts. And the 600s, which have app. triple the Class A watts of the 260s allegedly run about the same temp as the 260.8s. But they also have a larger chassis (19 x 21.5 x 11 - *** times two).

    A question: Would the Power Consumption of both amps make a difference in heat? 250.8 - 450 watts vs the 260.8 at 375 watts.

    IMO, the smaller surface area of a 250.8 may make it feel and run warmer.
    the initial Class A bias of the 260's is actually 18 watts greater than that of the 250. Remember, a Class A amp at idle has but one way to dissipate it's energy, through heat for there is no load being driven. Regardless I do not consider the 260's to be a major issue, is it noticeable in the summer time, yes, but not a deal breaker IMO.
    Cheers ! Ö. Dave

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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikado463 View Post
    the initial Class A bias of the 260's is actually 18 watts greater than that of the 250. Remember, a Class A amp at idle has but one way to dissipate it's energy, through heat for there is no load being driven. Regardless I do not consider the 260's to be a major issue, is it noticeable in the summer time, yes, but not a deal breaker IMO.
    . My bad you are correct on the Class A wattage.
    Sincerely,

    Calvin

  28. #28

    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    Hi, Mechnutt. I see this post is quite awhile ago but the issue or "detail" versus "round" has been quite relevant for me recently. Reading the objectivist hype over at Audio Science Review I decided to try Purifi 1ET400A-based amp. I also decided to sell my Pass Labs X150.5 having owned and enjoyed it for several years.

    Well, the Purifi is a champion of resolution, transparency, and dynamics and the expense of being stone cold and highly intolerant of 2nd rate recordings. See my review at Audio Asylum ... REVIEW: VTV Amplifier Purifi 1ET400A Stereo Amplifier (SS) - Feanor - Amp/Preamp Asylum

    My dilema today is whether I ought to retreat to a "rounder" sounding amp or take some other measure to mitigate the coldness of the Purifi. I have tried my Schiit Freya + preamp in Tube v. Passive Mode: this did "round" the presentation a bit plus offered tubes' "holographic" sound. However I quickly found myself missing the full transparency of the straight Purifi. So I'm still wondering what's to do?
    Are you sure your system didn't take a backwards turn in SQ when you swapped out your Magnapan speakers for kit speakers you installed in a kit cabinet that was less than optimum in volume for the woofer used as well as replacing your Pass X150.5 amp with a cheaper priced Class D amp?
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  29. #29
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Larry, the Cary and Primare are opposite ends of the spectrum. What made your son decide to sell the A21? If he feels Cary is too warm I'd recommend something not as Primare, maybe small step that direction. I've not heard any current Primare but their gear came off as a bit edgy sounding to me. We used to have a Primare dealer so I've tried some of the gear and had one of their processors. Of course some balance could be gained by system matching I suppose. I was using Dynaudio at the time I played with Primare so those aren't overly bright speakers.

    Bill, have you looked at the Schitt Alger power amp? Maybe misspelled. A friend bought two and tried as monoblocks, he loved the sound but they couldn't push his speakers. May be an option if your speakers are efficient. Larry had pretty good experience building a Pass preamp from a kit, that may be an option as well to keep good sound while adding a touch of warmth.
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    The 1ET400A is indeed Purifi, not Hypex; it's really just another name for the Eigentakt.

    By the way, the NAD M33 is very impressive in its capabilities.

    That Purifi module is usually coupled to some sort of input buffer that provide a some extra gain. The point is that this buffer can color the sound to some extent. The buffer usually include an op amp but might used a discrete circuit to provide this gain. My VTV amp uses a VTV buffer with at Sparkos SS3062 op amp, while NAD uses its own, proprietary buffer, so it's possible that my amp and your NAD could sound subtly different.

    In any case, I misspoke describing the Purifi as "stone cold": the phrase has too negative a connotation. Rather I should simply have said it that it's not warm.
    Thanks Bill. According to NAD, they worked with Purifi on the Eigentakt module and make it themselves rather than buy the standard unit off-the-shelf. They say:

    "NADís renowned designers worked closely with Purifi Audio to customise the Eigentakt implementation to ensure every product featuring the technology would meet the high standards NAD is known for. For this reason, NAD manufactures its own Eigentakt modules rather than buy off-the-shelf. Eigentakt is a once-in-a-decade amplifier innovation that will define the pinnacle of power and performance for years to come. Itís not often that such novel audiophile technology is made available with so much value packed in."

    How different the NAD version is compared with the off-the-shelf version I don't know but the output of NAD's M33 is quoted as 200 / 380 watts compaed with the 1ET400A's spec of ??? / 425 watts. Perhaps NAD found that de-powering improved the sound quality.

    However, you can bet your boots that NAD will be looking to find an even better amp module long before the "once-in-a-decade" period has ended! I'm sure the M34 is less than a decade away!

    For the time being, I'm happy with the M33 - as I was for a few years with its predecessor the Direct Digital based M32. Both great amps of exceptional value.

    Peter
    Sources - NAD M50.2 (streamer, CD player, CD ripper, hard drive music store)
    Amplification - NAD M33, NAD M12, Consonance Cyber 845 monoblocs
    Speakers - Avantgarde Duo XD, Avantgarde Duo (2006 - aesthetically modified), Martin Logan Expression 13A (now sold)

  31. #31
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Larry, the Cary and Primare are opposite ends of the spectrum. What made your son decide to sell the A21? If he feels Cary is too warm I'd recommend something not as Primare, maybe small step that direction. I've not heard any current Primare but their gear came off as a bit edgy sounding to me. We used to have a Primare dealer so I've tried some of the gear and had one of their processors. Of course some balance could be gained by system matching I suppose. I was using Dynaudio at the time I played with Primare so those aren't overly bright speakers.
    .

    My son really likes the Cary. It is not too warm but it does not have that very crisp attack and extreme detail that the Primare has. The Cary has a lot of detail and a rich full bodied sound with a huge sound stage and great dynamics. It really is a great integrated. The Primare is just different with more detail, resolution and transparency. He is just second guessing himself because we thought that the Primare-Wharfedale room with the new Evo 4.4 speakers (which he ended up buying and are a truly remarkable speaker at its price and out performs speaker costing twice as much) at RMAF was one of the better sounding rooms at the show.

    He sold the A21 because he needed a new DAC and preamp and wanted a more audiophile sound. The Cary fits the bill and then some.
    My Gear- Mains System-Pass X250 amp, BAT VK-51se preamp, Luxman DA-06 DAC, Magnepan 1.6's, Thorens TD-145 TT, Dual Martin Logan Subs, Vintage Luxman T-110 Tuner, Other systems- Parasound A21 amp,Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid tube DAC and Preamp, Magnepan MMG's, Monitor Audio S1's, PSB B6's, Def Tech Pro Monitor 1000's, Velodyne sub, Adcom GFR-700 AVR, Music Hall 25.2 modified CDP, Cables by Cardas Parsec, AQ Columbia DBS 72v, Wire World.

  32. #32
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    had a beautiful class A amp here , absolutely stunning with my tannoys but with my horns it was too much for my ears !! i guess it all depends on synergy with the speakers !!
    1]bel canto pre 3 vbs ice power amps . rotel cd , modright modded jolida dac tannoy eaton legacy 2]bel canto pre 3vbs ,arcam a85 , black ice modded dac
    modded dac , marantz sa8005, reference fidelity impulse Ta`us horns

  33. #33
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Going back to my Pass X250, I enjoyed that amp and the sound, however, moved to Levinson liking the sharper leading edges and quicker response better.

    There are characters of the Coda 8 that are better than my Levinson, more intelligible vocals and better detail in some aspects overall, it's just as fast, yet there is something I still likeabout listening to the Levinson better. The Coda has such a quiet background you'd have to hear it to believe.

    I am mad at myself it takes me so long to figure these things out, now I am not able to return the 8. I'm going to try to get $5k back out of it, not even 120 days yet.

    The real mystery to me is what is it I can't fully enjoy the 8, it's a great amp by anyone's standards. The 8 version I have is Class A for the first 12 watts, I'm wondering if I have an issue that I am one who may not prfer Class A. I don't like overly aggressive amps either. I guess we all have our sweet spot.

    I also listen to a wide variety of music so amps that may excel on certain genres would present an issue for me.

    SS amplifiers have to be selected for the load they are going to drive no differently than how one would spend the time to match their tube amp selection to the speakers.


    How much class A is the levinson ..?

  34. #34
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin View Post
    I don't recall anyone stating they could hear the slide from Class A to B. However, having more Class A bias does effect the sound of the amp overall. As Pass states on their website, "Like all of the class A/B .8's, this amplifier has some class A bias, rewarding its listeners with a whole new zenith of sound quality."
    The slide is noticeable , this is why its important to match to speakers sensitivity, impedance Load and listening level desired ..



    Regards

  35. #35
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I'm not sure, Levinson to my knowledge has never published that but I suspect very little.

    I've never been able to detect the slide from classs A to A/B. Maybe I've not driven any of the amps that hard orjust don't know what to listen for. Unless the A/B had a high distortion rating I don't see how anyone could hear the transition. The power draw would vary depending on demand, if the transition was audible can you imagine the volume being on the threshold where the amp switched back and forth several times a song?

    Quote Originally Posted by a.wayne View Post
    SS amplifiers have to be selected for the load they are going to drive no differently than how one would spend the time to match their tube amp selection to the speakers.


    How much class A is the levinson ..?
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  36. #36

    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I have owned a ton of equipment as I like buying new stuff and seeing if I can make it work in my system. I also limit the amount I can spend on each purchase so I can try more stuff. That said, I have quite an inventory of cables so I can change the sound to my liking. Only once have I not been happy with my system when adding a new component (which was just recently). Why not take advantage of The Cable Company's loan program and try different cables with the Coda? It will probably be a bit cheaper to tune with cables than tune with components.

  37. #37
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Perhaps Class D?

    I run a pair of JBL 4365 monitors in a second system powered by Marantz PM-10 (and a SA-10 cdp). I find it enjoyable.

    Of course some think of Marantz as low brow.......not me.

  38. #38
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    I'm not sure, Levinson to my knowledge has never published that but I suspect very little.

    I've never been able to detect the slide from classs A to A/B. Maybe I've not driven any of the amps that hard orjust don't know what to listen for. Unless the A/B had a high distortion rating I don't see how anyone could hear the transition. The power draw would vary depending on demand, if the transition was audible can you imagine the volume being on the threshold where the amp switched back and forth several times a song?
    Most likely your only leaving class A on dynamic peaks if it was avg din outside of class A you would notice it most likely in the top end. Also heatsinks temps affects the slide if too hot they will stay out of class A meaning you wont notice anything as its permanently outside of class A.

    This is worst case scenario thou , amp would have to be roasting the heat sinks with high temps, if so most likely there would be no class A Bias , which could be what you are hearing as oppose to more class A bias ..


    Regards

  39. #39
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Gary, the Wayback would certainly fix things.

    Joe, I probably didn't explain myself well enough. I knew the Pass was Class A up to a point, I was trying to show I moved on from the Pass to the 532h, some Class A to an amp with very little.

    Dave,I suspect you nailed it. Liking a more accurate amp and keeping with one that won't offend leaves a narrow field. Or, high price tag, LOL
    Your levinson has a 4amp idle draw so it has some class A power .. Im estimating 25-high of 30 watts per channel class A bias ..


    Regards

  40. #40
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    I looked at that Marantz pair back when but couldn't find reviews or much said about them.

    I'd like to hear what the ATI Class D sound like.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom1040 View Post
    Perhaps Class D?

    I run a pair of JBL 4365 monitors in a second system powered by Marantz PM-10 (and a SA-10 cdp). I find it enjoyable.

    Of course some think of Marantz as low brow.......not me.
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  41. #41
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    You think that much.... hmmm. If that is the case it isn't class A that's the issue then. The amp doesn't get very warm to have class A bias.

    Quote Originally Posted by a.wayne View Post
    Your levinson has a 4amp idle draw so it has some class A power .. Im estimating 25-high of 30 watts per channel class A bias ..


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  42. #42
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    You think that much.... hmmm. If that is the case it isn't class A that's the issue then. The amp doesn't get very warm to have class A bias.
    I miss stated its total not per channel , specs says 85W quiescent draw ..

    Mark Levinson No.532H power amplifier Specifications | Stereophile.com

  43. #43
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    ..That Purifi module is usually coupled to some sort of input buffer that provide a some extra gain. The point is that this buffer can color the sound to some extent. The buffer usually include an op amp but might used a discrete circuit to provide this gain..
    The buffer is by design, this module will have OEM applications. It allows mfr to develop their own buffer stage (16 db) and power supply to give it their own signature sound. I would think a tube-based or fully discrete buffer module and linear instead of a switch mode PS would also contribute positively to the SQ. Im watching a few projects on the web that are underway using the Purifi modules and different buffers.
    "Listening to Analogue music is an act of rebellion in a digital gulag" - Simon Yorke

  44. #44
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    Re: Could it be I don't care for Class A

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Going back to my Pass X250, I enjoyed that amp and the sound, however, moved to Levinson liking the sharper leading edges and quicker response better.

    There are characters of the Coda 8 that are better than my Levinson, more intelligible vocals and better detail in some aspects overall, it's just as fast, yet there is something I still likeabout listening to the Levinson better. The Coda has such a quiet background you'd have to hear it to believe.

    I am mad at myself it takes me so long to figure these things out, now I am not able to return the 8. I'm going to try to get $5k back out of it, not even 120 days yet.

    The real mystery to me is what is it I can't fully enjoy the 8, it's a great amp by anyone's standards. The 8 version I have is Class A for the first 12 watts, I'm wondering if I have an issue that I am one who may not prfer Class A. I don't like overly aggressive amps either. I guess we all have our sweet spot.

    I also listen to a wide variety of music so amps that may excel on certain genres would present an issue for me.
    The correct answer is No. But that is only because none of the amps you've listed are class A. If they are class A, its to full power, not 12 watts or anything like that. IOW you're describing AB amps that you don't like as opposed to other AB amps that you do. Some are biased more heavily than others but that is very different from actually being class A. For fun maybe see if you can borrow a real class A amp and see if you still feel that way.

    FWIW though the differences we hear in amps usually are not about the class of operation. Its about the distortion they do or do not make.

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Could it be I don't care for Class A

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