Need help choosing an amp
Jul 18, 2002 at 12:55 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 6

Snufkin

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I've just spent .. well, quite a while, reading through past amp posts and reviews and I'm even less sure of what I should get now
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I need someone to hold my hand and take me amp shopping, here's what I want:

Versatility - I listen to everything from 80's music to trance/goa to classic rock to acoustic stuff to general crap.

I'll be using my Beyer 531s (250ohm) and 770pros(250ohm), maybe now and then using the 250-80s, and adding another to the collection in the future isn't difficult to imagine (probably a pair of hd580s)

I've posted this question before and had an idea of what to consider, but I've increased my budget somewhat which opens up a few more possibilities.

I currently have an x-cans, which doesn't actually have the original internals, I didn't catalogue what it has, but I bought it 2nd hand from someone who'd done a bit of fiddling with it and I got it cheap, so it made for a good first amp as far as I can tell
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Here's what I've been considering (and feel free to shoot my considerations down and stomp on them with golf shoes);

MG head
RKV (brought to my attention recently, probably just outside my budget, but who can resist a bargain)
Corda headamp
something else (?)

Now there's a couple of things I'm not sure about - first, because I'm in Australia and we have a 240v power system here, am I going to need to get anything extra in the way of power supplies?
Second - what will I have to spend (or not have to spend) to notice a difference and third, is there anything else I should be considering?

I'm not adverse to a tube amp, and while I find the idea of tube rolling interesting, I'm probably not actually likely to ever do it... although I really do enjoy the idea of glowing equipment
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Thanks in advance gang and please, be gentle
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Jul 18, 2002 at 1:18 PM Post #2 of 6

kelly

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Snufkin

If you're concerned about having a "well rounded" amplifier that does everything right, the Corda HA-1 is a great solution. I'm not sure how the price converts to Australian but I am sure that Meier can sell you one that works in your area (if they don't already all work in every area? Seems like he said that.).

Of course, I think the RKV is a very good amplifier but it costs quite a bit more than the Corda.

The MG Head is excellent and a great value as long as you understand its strengths and weaknesses. Add $25 to the price because the Raytheon tube is practically required. With that tube and in OTL mode, you'll have one of the best sounding midranges out of all the amps out there. Unfortunately, you'll be missing a good deal of extension and speed. Is that trade off worth it to you? That's the thing to consider. If you listen to mostly guitar rock or jazz solo artists, I generally think it's worth it. If you listen to mostly orchestral pieces, prog rock or fusion, those trade offs aren't worth it to me. When it came time for me to choose between the MG Head and the Corda, I went with the Corda because of its versatility even though the midrange wasn't quite as nice.

Of course, I think the three amps on your list so far are all great choices. I might add to that the Sugden Headmaster (which I personally ordered but have not received) and the Berning microZOTL (which I've not heard but carries excellent reviews from great HeadFiers).

If I can help in any way, let me know. Amps have become my favorite part of this hobby.
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Jul 18, 2002 at 1:42 PM Post #3 of 6

Snufkin

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Kelly - thanks a lot for the advice, it's good to hear the ha-1 stacks up well against the other options
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The main problem is I don't really know how any of the options sound, so I'll be buying them on the faith that they will suit my needs.

I know how the x-cans sounds, and as far as I'm concerned if I upgrade and every aspect of the sound is better, I'll be happy - I wouldn't want anything to sound.. less than the way the x-cans sound, and I guess from what I have heard, I tend to enjoy the tube-ey sound.. on the other had it may not actually suit my tastes in music.

In terms of what I listen to, I'll narrow it down a little more by listing what's scattered here in front of me - in no particular order; Led Zep, Pink Floyd, Cure, Depeche Mode, Ian Pooley, Thievery Corporation, The Police, Astral Projection and Tool (as a sample of some of the stuff I listen to)

In terms of cost, it's basically a 1-2 ratio, $300US is $600AU, so the RKV really is a bit of a stretch... one I'd be willing to make if it really were worth it.

I suppose later on down the track I'll add another amp to the collection, but in the meantime I'm really after something that will offer me a noticable upgrade from what I have
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oh.. btw; headmaster - where and how much?
 
Jul 18, 2002 at 7:15 PM Post #4 of 6

zzz

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Quote:

Originally posted by Snufkin
oh.. btw; headmaster - where and how much?


two places I know:

www.stoneaudio.co.uk (they sell 240V version too). some people who ordered from them have received their stash in less than 2 weeks, some had to wait for several months. they have never replied to my emails. about 860 USD shipped (+import tax).

brooklyn audio (search on audiogon for `headmaster`, you'll find them). don't know anything about 240V. you *WILL* have to wait because they are sold out of sugdens again (they order 4-5, wait for a couple of months to receive them, sell them all the same day, repeat...). 799 shipped in Canada, 819 shipped to US (+import tax).

there are others (mostly local stores), but I have no idea if any of them will be willing to ship. the price is usually higher (around 1k USD).
 
Jul 19, 2002 at 12:41 AM Post #6 of 6

Snufkin

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*crosses headmaster off his list*

My girlfriend would kill me...

With the RKV I'd be able to dazzle her with the shiny-ness, she'd understand, but the headmaster definately exceeds my budget...
 

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