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Arcam Diva A85 has no Personality, New Amp Needed!

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Rich27

New member
Apr 19, 2009
1
0
0
Craig M.:Rich27, i was just wondering why you use the hiface. do you hear a difference between it and optical into your dac?

Craig,

Yes it did make a subtle improvement but worth a try for the £100 or so it costs. The sound from Mac Mini/hiFace is different to that of the CD5XS but I would struggle to say which was "better". This is just using the CD5XS on analogue out at the moment as I am waiting for another bnc-bnc cable to arrive.

Cheers.

p.s. this is a direct answer to Craig's question please don't all chime in with dissing what is just my opinion!
 
T

the record spot

Guest
Rich27:
Get off your high horse...

I wasn't on it thanks. The stable's getting cleaned out.

Rich27:
...if you really don't care why do you get so wound up about the simple opinion of other people.

I don't, but you appear to be by mine. Why, for one thing, is it alright to have one opinion yet not to have the opposing one?

You can hold your opinion all day long and you're welcome to it by all means. Don't, however, confuse that with the possibility that a given viewpoint won't be queried, or challenged or just plain refuted - on an internet forum probably more than anywhere else. And if you think this is bad, you've led a charmed life on the various audio forums out there.

Rich27:
You obviously believe that yours is the only "right" opinion and others are not allowed to express their own.

Hmmm, nope, I don't believe I do. Free country and all that. In addition, I refer the honourable gentleman to the answer I gave a moment ago in the point above.

In the same way that you came to your opinion through whatever means, mine came through trial, error, significant expense and a bunch of products including Nordost, Van den Hul, Audioquest, QED and a three-point BT Mains Conditioning Unit. The Nordost wires cost me about £90, Van den Hul were £60, Audioquest between £40-£70, QED about £40 and the ones I use currently around £7.

Apart from the Nordost, which were silver based, the rest were copper, solid core, and came in a variety of different coloured sheaths and smart boxes, with some pictures on the back telling me how they were made and usually some mention of a five star review in WHF. All of which did, with the exception of my current Computergear cables.

In the end, I came to the conclusion that I am using the right wires, which have the right composition (copper core) and does what I need it to do effectively. Or, carry the signal from the source to the amp over a distance of around 1m.

For the mains conditioner, I bought the BT MCU off Ebay on recommendation from someone on here. Tried it out, had it up and running again just recently and compared against my existing 5-way generic block and going right into the mains socket in the wall. Also, I live in Edinburgh and enjoy a good supply without issues.

I mention that as, for the MCU, there was no change to the sound plugged in the wall, the existing block or the BT unit. Nor was there when I just re-ran it for the past week.

For the interconnects, again, the only difference was that between silver and copper. I'll never use a silver based cable again as it was hopelessly bright sounding and killed the tonal balance of the kit I had at the time. As for the copper ones, I have significant misgivings around the claims in the magazines as there was no difference between any of the ones I mentioned above. If you hear one, then good on you. I have my Computergear cables, am delighted with them and would recommend anyone to buy a pair and try them out. £7? Chump change.

And as for bitrates? I think it's the latest in a long line of audio arguments that go back decades. I use 192, 320 and lossless as and when. I used Apple Lossless for the Beatles Mono Boxset, but converted many to 192kbps. Some to 320. I have a mix on my iPod and on iTunes and play them back at times through the stereo via an Apple Airport Express. No difference.

I think what people are able to hear, what they think they hear and what they feel they ought to hear are completely different things. And there's a bunch of stuff at certain frequencies we never could and never will and yet somehow, this impacts on the audible spectrum when it comes to bitrates and hey presto - new holy grail territory.

So you'll need to forgive my intemperate replies from time to time, but, like you, I think the OP can make up his own mind very well indeed. It's just that an informed position isn't arrived at solely by virtue of hearing one opinion and one opinion alone.

Rich27:
Personally I couldn't give a monkeys whether you can hear the difference or not, that is up to you.

Yes, which would be pertinent in as much as it's me doing the listening. As to you giving a monkeys or not about what I think, let me put it this way - I don't care.

Rich27:

In my earlier threads I was just trying to offer some simple helpful advice to the OP, when it gets reaction like yours, I won't bother again.

 
A

Anonymous

Guest
the record spot:Don't be conned into believing the whole bitrate nonsense. Most people can't tell the difference between say 192 and 320 and then CD quality. I use 192kbps, it's absolutely fine. The critical thing is the quality of the recording in the first place and that just shines through no matter what the bitrate is.

I can hear the difference between 192kbps and 320kbps on my hi fi without any difficulty.Thats burned to disc and payed on the hi fi, not connected straight through an mp3 player. My mate does use an mp3 player as a source though. I am not sure what rate he uses but i know its lower than 320 and higher than 128. I can hear the difference easily on his system. It sounds duff compared to orignal cd's. In fact i always ask him not to use his i pod when i am round as it sounds so bad compared to originals.

You have said in the past that you cant hear the difference that supposedly better and more expensive interconnects and speaker cables make either. Have you considered that its your ears? Some people are tone deaf and there are varying degrees of tone deafness, maybe its something like that. I cant for the life of me otherwise understand how you can't hear what i ,and others, hear easily.
 
T

the record spot

Guest
LOL, no mate, ears are fine with the usual limitations that ageing brings. I don't play the nano through the streo though. It all goes straight off the hard drive on the laptop to the system (via iTunes of course).

And there will be a difference to some degree with a CD player given the source will be different. So a straight compare between the information from a hard drive and that from a CDP isn't on the cards for me.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Frankly, RS, you do get bees in you bonnets and hang on them more than just tenaciously. I dare anyone to say Genelec are anything less than the best speakers out there on this forum!

I have only average hearing, but I can tell the difference between compressed, lossless and uncompressed pretty easily on my equipment. My thought would be it's the gear you're using that makes it difficult to tell the difference.

[EDITED BY MODS - Let's stick to this forum]
 

Rich27

New member
Apr 19, 2009
1
0
0
[Edited by mods - Please - as per Clare's post above - do not let this descend any further into personal attacks.]
 

Rich27

New member
Apr 19, 2009
1
0
0
APatel8:Calm down guys. Stick to my rubbish system :p

Thats the point, you don't have a "rubbish" system and there are some simple (and free) things that you could try without resorting to spending a lot more money. Get your computer source as good as it can be, then you will have a firm base on which to try changing other components, preferably in your home using your source.
 

daveh75

Well-known member
Jul 31, 2008
564
3
18,895
And all this tit for tat is helpful to the OP, how exactly?

[NOTE FROM MODS - A VERY GOOD POINT, DAVE. PRECEEDING SQUABBLE DELETED]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..
 

MUSICRAFT

Well-known member
APatel8:
Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..

Hi APatel8

I'll again suggest you also look at Rotel's RA-1062 amplifier as i feel this will do the trick for you.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I used to use a Rotel RA03 with some MA RS1s and the combo was very punchy and musical. I found the MAs too bright for me and the bass wasn't the best but I used to forget about it and get into the music. Rick's recommendation sounds like a good one based on my experiences.

If you didn't like the bass on the Chameleon then try their new Crimson Plus. I used to have the older Crimson and it was fab, very balanced and easier to live with than the SHBs (that I use for TV and DVD with great success). I've heard that the Crimson Plus is a decent step up from it's predecessor. Gotta be worth a try.

Dazmb recently sung the praises of Nene Valley Audio's cheaper cables and these may be worth a punt for beer money and fun.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
MUSICRAFT:APatel8:
Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..

Hi APatel8

I'll again suggest you also look at Rotel's RA-1062 amplifier as i feel this will do the trick for you.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Hi Rick,

Thanks for the suggestion. I've been looking for a second hand one but finding it hard to come by. I'm looking for either one of these or the creek evo's.

Interestingly I really wanted to pair my RS8's with the Rotel RA-03 at the beginning, but just couldn't find one so settled on the Arcam, is the 1062 a big improvement on the RA-03?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
igglebert:I used to use a Rotel RA03 with some MA RS1s and the combo was very punchy and musical. I found the MAs too bright for me and the bass wasn't the best but I used to forget about it and get into the music. Rick's recommendation sounds like a good one based on my experiences. If you didn't like the bass on the Chameleon then try their new Crimson Plus. I used to have the older Crimson and it was fab, very balanced and easier to live with than the SHBs (that I use for TV and DVD with great success). I've heard that the Crimson Plus is a decent step up from it's predecessor. Gotta be worth a try. Dazmb recently sung the praises of Nene Valley Audio's cheaper cables and these may be worth a punt for beer money and fun.

Hi thanks for the interconnect suggestions.
 

aliEnRIK

New member
Aug 27, 2008
92
0
0
the record spot:aliEnRIK:

the record spot:Don't be conned into believing the whole bitrate nonsense. Most people can't tell the difference between say 192 and 320 and then CD quality. I use 192kbps, it's absolutely fine. The critical thing is the quality of the recording in the first place and that just shines through no matter what the bitrate is.

I dont think bitrate could be classed as 'nonsense'

Neither do I, it's the resulting golden eared claims that people can tell a difference between 192, 320kbps and an audio CD copy that I'm referring to.

I certainly dont claim to be 'golden eared', but when I last compared a particular track at 192 and compared to the cd, the cds bass was ever so slightly better (that said, it was only 'slightly' better so I can see where your coming from)
 

MUSICRAFT

Well-known member
APatel8:MUSICRAFT:APatel8:
Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..

Hi APatel8

I'll again suggest you also look at Rotel's RA-1062 amplifier as i feel this will do the trick for you.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Hi Rick,

Thanks for the suggestion. I've been looking for a second hand one but finding it hard to come by. I'm looking for either one of these or the creek evo's.

Interestingly I really wanted to pair my RS8's with the Rotel RA-03 at the beginning, but just couldn't find one so settled on the Arcam, is the 1062 a big improvement on the RA-03?

Hi APatel8

I sold many RA-1062's and keep in touch with some of my clients who still own the amp. They are all still delighted with the RA-1062 so this might be a reason as to why they are hard to come by. I would suggest to hold out for one as i feel it will be worth the wait.

The RA-03 is a good amplifer however imo the RA-1062 is much better than the RA-03, Evo and the A85. The RA-1062 has clarity, drive with grip and weight.

The RA-1062 is imo the finest overall amplifier Totel have produced in the last decade.

As for interconnects i would recommend Van Den Hul's The Integration Hybrid, for speaker cables a generic cable one will do the trick nicely and for mains cables use the standard ones supplied with your components.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
MUSICRAFT:APatel8:MUSICRAFT:APatel8:
Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..

Hi APatel8

I'll again suggest you also look at Rotel's RA-1062 amplifier as i feel this will do the trick for you.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Hi Rick,

Thanks for the suggestion. I've been looking for a second hand one but finding it hard to come by. I'm looking for either one of these or the creek evo's.

Interestingly I really wanted to pair my RS8's with the Rotel RA-03 at the beginning, but just couldn't find one so settled on the Arcam, is the 1062 a big improvement on the RA-03?

Hi APatel8

I sold many RA-1062's and keep in touch with some of my clients who still own the amp. They are all still delighted with the RA-1062 so this might be a reason as to why they are hard to come by. I would suggest to hold out for one as i feel it will be worth the wait.

The RA-03 is a good amplifer however imo the RA-1062 is much better than the RA-03, Evo and the A85. The RA-1062 has clarity, drive with grip and weight.

The RA-1062 is imo the finest overall amplifier Totel have produced in the last decade.

As for interconnects i would recommend Van Den Hul's The Integration Hybrid, for speaker cables a generic cable one will do the trick nicely and for mains cables use the standard ones supplied with your components.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Cheers Rick!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
maxflinn:ra-1062 , with my rx6s ? hmmmmm...rubs chin ...

They were suggested for my RS8's though?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Interconnects:
Chord Crimson Plus Black Rhodium PreludeChord Cobra 3
Speaker Cable:
Chord Carnival SilverscreenChord Odyssey 2QED Revelation Ok, so for cabling, narrowed down to the options above. Given requirements, can people help narrow down? I should be testing some chord odyssey with my current system soon. Also as I said, used the Chord Cameleon interconnect to test today and there was a big improvement - more detail and seperation at the top end, however it seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion (this could have been because of the speaker cabling however).
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
APatel8:
maxflinn:ra-1062 , with my rx6s ? hmmmmm...rubs chin ...

They were suggested for my RS8's though?

strangely enough , im going to buy either an a32 or a85 , plus a power amp
...

ricks appraisal of the rotel is noted though , just in case


similar speakers so would probably match up well ...
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2008
1,636
83
19,770
MUSICRAFT:APatel8:MUSICRAFT:APatel8:

Hi Guys,

So just tested a different amp (Marantz PM8003) and used a different interconnect - chord cameleon. Unfortunately wasn't able to test a different speaker cable.

Firstly, the Marantz was an improvement over the Arcam. Sounded a lot better at lower volumes and seemed to handle the speakers a lot better, but dynamics were still lacking in my opinion. Definitely need an amp that is dynamic and punchy. The lack of dynamics could have been down to the speaker cable also..

The Chord Cameleon was a big improvement over the Silver High Breeds I use. I noticed when switching from Chord Cameleon to Silver High Breeds, there was less detail and there was hardly any separation at the top end.. both seemed to suffer from a bit of bass distortion.

With this in mind, any different suggestions for amp and interconnect. Amp definitely need something with some gusto that will give the music some LIFE - this is my main problem with what I am hearing. Interconnect my friend suggested perhaps Merlin Verdi or townsend dc 100... not really heard of any of them, but suggestions on these welcome!

Speaker cable also contributing to the lack of dynamics/punch probably..

Hi APatel8

I'll again suggest you also look at Rotel's RA-1062 amplifier as i feel this will do the trick for you.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Hi Rick,

Thanks for the suggestion. I've been looking for a second hand one but finding it hard to come by. I'm looking for either one of these or the creek evo's.

Interestingly I really wanted to pair my RS8's with the Rotel RA-03 at the beginning, but just couldn't find one so settled on the Arcam, is the 1062 a big improvement on the RA-03?

Hi APatel8

I sold many RA-1062's and keep in touch with some of my clients who still own the amp. They are all still delighted with the RA-1062 so this might be a reason as to why they are hard to come by. I would suggest to hold out for one as i feel it will be worth the wait.

The RA-03 is a good amplifer however imo the RA-1062 is much better than the RA-03, Evo and the A85. The RA-1062 has clarity, drive with grip and weight.

The RA-1062 is imo the finest overall amplifier Totel have produced in the last decade.

As for interconnects i would recommend Van Den Hul's The Integration Hybrid, for speaker cables a generic cable one will do the trick nicely and for mains cables use the standard ones supplied with your components.

All the best

Rick @ Musicraft

Have you heard the Rotel with the older Silver Range? I love Rotel, always have done, but the synergy with MA RS range isn't the greatest.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
maxflinn:APatel8:
maxflinn:ra-1062 , with my rx6s ? hmmmmm...rubs chin ...

They were suggested for my RS8's though?

strangely enough , im going to buy either an a32 or a85 , plus a power amp
...

ricks appraisal of the rotel is noted though , just in case


similar speakers so would probably match up well ...

Hmm Rotel definitely meshes with Monitor Audio. I've heard them power my speakers and GR20's and both sounded good - I just went with the Arcam as I thought it may mesh even better, but I think for my type of music the more dynamic Rotel may be just the ticket. My A85 will be on eBay pretty soon :)
 

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