Advice: amp and speakers for low volumes


New member
Aug 10, 2019
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Looking to get a new amp and set of speakers.

The consensus seems to be an amp from the Cambridge 640, Marantz 6002 or NAD 352, and speaks from either B&W 685/6, KEF IQ5 or Cambridge S30.

As I live in a London flat the system is going to get played at low to med volumes and the speakers are not going to have much room, probably against a sidewall. Music which will get played will range from classical to rock/ pop and soul, but will not include base heavy dance genres.

I have 2 questions:

1) Do any of the above options match my requirements or are not suitable ? I read the IQ5s are not sensitive to positioning.

2) Where in London can I go to demo some combinations ?

Thanks for you help in advance


I just want to add Monitor Audio to your list. Consider the silver or gold series. One more interesting option would be Jamo C 803. It's shape helps eliminate standing waves and that should go in your favor. Not sure how much it will cost though.


i am not so sure about the b&w 686's as they have a sensitivity of 84 which could make them tricky to drive. not usually a good thing at low volume. Cracking sounding speakers though.Mon audio RS1's sound superb and are good at low volume.


Well-known member
First of all, forget the Cambridge Audio S30s. I have a pair and they are stunning for the money but don't respond well to being placed close to wall boundaries.

I find my combination of NAD C325BEE and Mordaunt-Short MS902i works very well at low volumes as well as higher ones. Unlike many systems, you can turn the level right down and still get good soundstaging, depth of sound and detail.

I've had MA Bronze B2s and found that they didn't work that well at low volumes although I've not heard the Silver or Gold Series so can't comment on those.


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