Cambridge Audio 840v 1 - how much does it lack from the newer version?

Gerrardasnails

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Does anyone have this amp? I'm interested to know if the version 2 is that much better. Would the version 1 be a lot better than the 740 for instance? Clare, Andrew, Thaiman, Joel, anyone else??
 

Tesler

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Good Question!
I've got the 740, I bought it last summer and didn't like it much at first. I connected it up in the spare room and left it turned on for about a week to run it in. I've been doing that since june last year and now need it in my main HiFi system because my old Pioneer A400 has pulled a sickie.
I think it sounds much better now than it did before. If you are thinking of buying one than think carefully about the rest of your kit. I found the top end was a bit harsh and scratchy because my old Marantz CD player was getting a bit tired too

I've heard the 840 and it does sound a bit more forthright than the 740 but don't know if it's worth £250 more, Try and audition both if you can first and then decide for your self

Tes
 

Gerrardasnails

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Thanks for that. The nearest Richer Sounds to me don't have demo rooms. I am chewing over the 840 v1 2nd hand or a Denon PMA1500ae. I've just sold a Creek Evo as it wouldn't connect to my AV receiver so that I could use my stereo speakers in a 5.1 system too. The 740, 840 and Denon offer this option (it's in their manuals). After the hassle I had trying to get my Evo working with my receiver, I want to see it in the manual before buying!
 

Cypher

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The NAD C355BEE maybe ? I think it will work well with your RS6 speakers also...........
 

tonky

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Hi Tesler,

I'd like to know if the 740A was as good as a Pioneer A400 (which I have and love. I also have a Cyrus 2 which is v good). I am thinking of purchasing the 840A v2 (if it's appreciably better).

I have been demo'd the 840A v1 and thought it was very good and intend to listen to v2 sometime in the future in an AB comparison with the Pioneer A400 .

cheers
 
A

Anonymous

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The old NAD grey is being phased out. Their new products are available in titanium (silver) or graphite (black).
 

Tesler

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Tonky,

You asked "I'd like to know if the 740A was as good as a Pioneer A400" well this is my experience.

The CA 740 has a DIFFERENT sound to the A 400, I didn't like it at first, but after a few hundred hours of running in it has started to sound better. However If like me, if you have been used to the Pioneer for many years, you will find the 740 sounds restrained and a little harsh on the treble (it does settle down after a while).

The pioneer is more fluid and sounds more dynamic in my opinion but It's not quite as good as the Cambridge for revealing little subtleties in the mid range.

So this answer to your question "is the 740 as good as the A400" ? Well, I would say maybe! They are both cracking amps but have different presentations.

which one do I prefer? I'm going to have to say that they A400 would take the prize, although mine has a slight mains hum through the speakers when switched on.

Tesler.
 

Gerrardasnails

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I'm just about to purchase the 840v1 for just under £500. Considering the 740 retails at £500 and you can't seem to buy them cheaper anywhere, I thought this was good business. Thaiman, your thoughts please - I ask you as you seem to have tried every amp/cdp known to man!! I will be using the underated Denon DCD700ae at first and may upgrade to something else next year although I really like it.
 

tonky

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Thanks for that Tesla,

I will A/B the pioneer A400 with the CA 840A v2 sometime in the future and hear if the difference is worth it. I picked up the A400 for 40 GBP through a local newspaper add - What a bargain!

I prefer it (only just though ) to the Cyrus 2 even tho I am listening to music thro the Cyrus 2 at the moment.

And very nice it sounds too!

Tonky
 
A

Anonymous

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Can't understand what the fuss is all about; these are a retailers own branded products and are usually sold without a comparible demonstration. I've only heard two Cambridge products and on both occasions similar priced kit from Arcam sounded far better!
 

Gerrardasnails

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If you have only heard two CA products, how can you have such an opinion? The press reviews for the original 840a were superb all bar WHSAV. The ironic part of this is that one of the excellent reviews was by Gramophone. Andrew Everard works on that magazine also. Does this mean that WHF was right and everyone else was wrong?
 
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Anonymous

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Hi,
The 840a was one of them and I thought it was dreadful. It doesn't mean anything of the sort either; just that people should always have a comparative demo that allows them to make a choice and not just follow reviews like lemmings. When it comes to choosing kit my ears are all that matters (as do yours when it comes to choosing kit for you) but I am uncomfortable with own brands because in my experience all you get in some shops is own brands rammed down your throat and no real choice. What good is that for the consumer?
Also as most brands are "voiced" if you don't like a few products my findings have been that you won't like others. I'll be unlikely to listen to others because the shop that sells them won't compare them with relevant alternatives and I don't trust hifi magazines to buy my kit for me.
 

Andrew Everard

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[quote user="Gerrardasnails"]The ironic part of this is that one of the excellent reviews was by Gramophone. Andrew Everard works on that magazine also.[/quote]

Nothing ever vaguely ironic about it - Gramophone reviews products purely for their ability to play classical music, whereas What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision reviews with more of an emphasis on what Gramophone readers would consider to be 'young people's music'. So there are bound to be times when the two reviews differ, purely due to the variations in focus.
 

Clare Newsome

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And as for our variation to other magazines' reviews, I'll repeat again that we consistently comparatively test products, not just listen to them in isolation. The CA isn't a bad amp - far from it; it does a lot of things very well indeed - but in our opinion you could buy better all-rounders. Which CA obviously agreed with, hence the upgrade...
 
A

Anonymous

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That surprises me because I always felt if a system was capable of doing its job properly then it should play all types of music. How does opera differ from hard-rock when it is a signal waiting to be reproduced? If a speaker is "good for rock" does that mean when your taste in music develops you have to chuck them out? Music is a journey and you don't always know what will "turn you on" and become your next purchase. What use is a system that doesn't allow you to do this?
 

Clare Newsome

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Hence our insistence on all-round performance.
emotion-2.gif
 

Gerrardasnails

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I didn't know that Andrew, not being a massive fan of classical music, I've never read Gramophone. I was hinting that Gramophone was no rag as you work on it as well as this one. My main point is that all the reviews have been excellent apart from the 3 star one from WHF. As for the other poster, I know I should demo but at £750 from Richer Sounds, it made sense to me to pay almost £300 less and listen and play at home knowing that if it's not what I want, I should be able to sell it for similar.
 

Andrew Everard

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[quote user="Rev"]That surprises me because I always felt if a system was capable of doing its job properly then it should play all types of music. How does opera differ from hard-rock when it is a signal waiting to be reproduced? If a speaker is "good for rock" does that mean when your taste in music develops you have to chuck them out? Music is a journey and you don't always know what will "turn you on" and become your next purchase. What use is a system that doesn't allow you to do this?[/quote]

Indeed, but a system designed to keep a rock fan happy might be very different from one favoured by a fan of opera or chamber music, for example...
 
A

Anonymous

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[quote user="Andrew Everard"]
[quote user="Rev"]That surprises me because I always felt if a system was capable of doing its job properly then it should play all types of music. How does opera differ from hard-rock when it is a signal waiting to be reproduced? If a speaker is "good for rock" does that mean when your taste in music develops you have to chuck them out? Music is a journey and you don't always know what will "turn you on" and become your next purchase. What use is a system that doesn't allow you to do this?[/quote]

Indeed, but a system designed to keep a rock fan happy might be very different from one favoured by a fan of opera or chamber music, for example...

[/quote]

I really can't see that Andrew. Do people listen to the same CD all the time and never grow in their taste for music? Good bass is good bass regardless of if its Motorhead or Holtz. Buy a system because it suits a few CD's and its a recipe for dissaster!
 
A

Anonymous

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[quote user="fr0g"][quote user="Rev"]Can't understand what the fuss is all about; these are a retailers own branded products and are usually sold without a comparible demonstration. I've only heard two Cambridge products and on both occasions similar priced kit from Arcam sounded far better![/quote]

Own brand? - CA is sold arund the world. In the UK Richer Sounds has an exclusive contract with them (who are part of Audio Partnership Plc I think?) . They aren't Tesco Value![/quote]

Richer Sounds parent company owns the Audio Partnership!
 

Andrew Everard

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[quote user="Rev"]Good bass is good bass regardless of if its Motorhead or Holtz.[/quote]

No, one is amplified, processed and manipulated, as most rock/pop/etc recordings are, and the other is the sound of real acoustic instruments, (hopefully) faithfully recorded.

Holst, maybe?
 

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