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Wharfedale Diamond 9.1's + Amp or Cambridge Audio SLA25's? Or Alternative?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi,

 

I am looking to buy my first pair of speakers and I have very little experience with these things. My budget isn't very high, originally I only wanted to spend £150 max. I had decided on the Wharfedale Diamond 9.1's, which are £120 for the pair and quite highly rated, what I didn't realise is that I'd need an amp to go with them. I really can't afford to spend more than £100 on an amp, can I get one that will compliment the Wharfedale's for this price? I saw the Cambridge Audio Topaz AM1 is £80, would this be worth getting? Or are there other amps that are around the same price and better?

 

I was going to use them with my PC, get a sound card for ~£50, connect that to the amp and then run the speakers off the amp, would that work? How would it sound?

 

The alternative was a pair of Cambridge Audio SLA25s, which have an inbuilt amp and so can be connected straight to the PC and bypasses any soundcard, they're priced at £300 though. Would these sound better than the Wharfedale -> Amp -> Sound card option?

 

I also have a pair of HD555's, so ideally, if I was to get an amp, I'd want one that would allow me to connect my headphones as well.

 

So any ideas on which is the best option? Or any alternatives? £300 is really, really pushing my budget, but if it's going to create a better system then it might be worth it.

 

Thanks for the help.

post #2 of 10
Thread Starter 

Anyone?

post #3 of 10

If u want to run cans and speakers perhaps consider an external DAC with headphone amplifier section? Have a look at the Fiio E10 perhaps? As for amps some vintage/classic amps sound awesome to this day and places like Gumtree UK are great sources for used classic/vintage amps tongue_smile.gif

post #4 of 10

Can't say more then:Amp takes more,space but allows alot of differens speakers to be used.

My diamond9.0 and my Cambridge audio topaz am5 sound wonderfull.

Got the AM5 for 120£ and the speakers for only 40£.


Edited by Great Sound - 1/8/12 at 12:58pm
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by trog View Post

If u want to run cans and speakers perhaps consider an external DAC with headphone amplifier section? Have a look at the Fiio E10 perhaps? As for amps some vintage/classic amps sound awesome to this day and places like Gumtree UK are great sources for used classic/vintage amps tongue_smile.gif


x2

 

don't forget speaker + interconnect wires.

post #6 of 10

my choice would be: Boston A25 + Lepai Amp + Fiio E10 (optional) + some cables, that's it. the Lepai should drive the speakers just fine as long it's not pushed too hard. then once you've more cash buy a better amp. all in all this should run you at about £200, more or less. way better than spending money on those rubbish little pc speaker systems.

post #7 of 10

I'd recommend saving up for a decent amp to be paired along with the speakers. I can speak for many people when saying patience takes a huge part in this "philia" we all have for audio.

post #8 of 10

I am currently running a very modest setup, which sounds pretty decent decent:

 

Toshiba Laptop -> HRT Streamer II -> Topping TP20 ->Cambride Audio S30.

 

I was on a tight budget and had the Streamer II so went this setup.

 

Also you may want to check this:

 

http://playitclear.blogspot.in/2011/02/ultra-budget-stereo-nuforce-icon-udac.html

post #9 of 10

This is my current desktop setup:

 

PC => USB-out => Fiio E10's line-out => Topping TP22 TA2050 T-amp => Wharfedale Diamond 9.1 on granite slab on rubber dampers on heavy wooden desk

 

Took me a while to position them properly, angle them so that tweeters were in the correct height for my sitting position, but now all is awesome. I think I combined all these bang for your buck items in a pretty cool budget desktop setup that sounds amazing. 

post #10 of 10

I prefer a dedicated 2 stereo channel system, but then again that's just me ;)

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