cambridge audio azur products

admin_exported

New member
Aug 10, 2019
2,556
4
0
Hi, I am thinking about getting the Cambridge Audio Azur 640A Amp and The Azur 640C rev2 CD player. They are both within the range I can justify paying to the missus and was wandering if anyone has this combo, what they think, or can you suggest anything at a similar price that may be better. They will be driving Mission 780 Argonauts which I am not flexible on as I am just spending circa £400 getting the parts to mend them.

I listen to a broad range of music, from vangelis to trance, White Stripes to The Cranberries, Blur to Duran Duran....(goes on and on) Is there any style of music the azurs don't live up to?

Thanks for any advice.
 

Clare Newsome

New member
Jun 4, 2007
1,657
0
0
They are both excellent products for the money that suit just about any genre, so you're sorted on that front. There's obviously also the visual and usability appeal of matching units that can be operated from one remote!

However, if you wanted yet-better performance in the same price band, the Rotel RA-04 amp (£250) and Marantz CD6002 (£270) CD player would be ones to audition. That combination should often slightly more refinement, rhythmic ability and punch than the CA pairing.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I was a bit disappointed with the 640A amp, but changed to the 740A and found it a big improvement and I'm *really* pleased with it. I've got the 640Cv2 cd player and very happy with that too (but haven't heard the CD6002!).

I know the 740A is more money, but I think it's a big step up. Mined ewe, for that money, I'm sure there's lots of other alternatives - I'm not sure how the 740A stacks up against the competition at this price point.

If you are buying from Richer Sounds, I'd seriously consider buying mail order - then you are entitled to a refund if you're not happy. If you buy from a store, they'll do an exchange or a refund only at their discretion...

if I was buying now, I'd also consider this:

http://www.superfi.co.uk/index.cfm/page/moreinfo.cfm/Product_ID/2723

Lettuce know what happens..!

EDIT: sorry seem to have no formatting!
 

Tesler

New member
Oct 2, 2007
38
0
0
I did exactly the same thing, I bought a 640A and found the top end very harsh and edgy. I took it back and exchanged it for the 740A no problem. However I connected it up to my marantz CD63se and my B&W DM602 S2's and still found this a bit harsh at the top end. Now I have got my old Pioneer A400 out of retirement and found that it is way better than either of the cambridge amps (IMHO).

The 740A has been relagated to the spare room, Maybe someone could tell me if my Marantz CD63 is not good for the cambridge amp?

Thanks a lot.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
eyther of you wondered y the top sounds edgy ? i have a 640a my self and im selling it because it is edgy and thats because it runs out of power very easyly
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I done a similar thing last week - I killed my 740A (replaced with a new one by CA the next day! Well done CA!) and dug out my old Yamaha AX400 and Denon PMA355 - I was expecting to find the change nice and refreshing.

I was shocked at how bad they sounded compared to the 740A! I was jolly glad to get the new 740A!

I've heard lots of good things about the A400 (with careful partnering), so thats good to hear!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
[quote user="sex"]eyther of you wondered y the top sounds edgy ? i have a 640a my self and im selling it because it is edgy and thats because it runs out of power very easyly[/quote]

Dunno why it sounds like it does. I found it lacked weight, body and 'oomph'. Sort of hard and shallow. Sorry I find it tricky to descibe sound! Maybe it was just a power thing, but my speakers are quite sensitive (89dB I think), but are known to be bright (MA RS6), but I love the sound with the 740A which has the same circuit topology (more power and extra output transistors I think), so can't explain it meself.
 

Tesler

New member
Oct 2, 2007
38
0
0
Well I was still getting the edgy sound from the 740A albeit to a lesser extent. I also found that you had to turn the volume right up to get a reasonable amount of clout from it. The 740A has a LCD display with the volume mesaured in minus db. I found to get a a reasonable amount of volume it had to read about minus 18db, this gave a singer the sound as if they were singing through a comb with a piece of tracing paper in front of it.

I also tried bi wiring he speakers but it just made it sound worse. That is the reason I went back to my A400. In my view it's much warmer, better soundstage and definately no harsh brash treble.

I hope my A400 keeps going for a few years yet, I have no idea if there is anything with a similar sound to this around now, perhaps someone might be able to tell me if this is so?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
-18dB Good grief! I usually have mine at -40dB or thereabouts! I find -37dB or so quite loud! -18dB?! I presume you don't have neighbors?! I tried bi-wring too, but didn't notice a difference. -18dB!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I have the 840c and 840C running a pair of MA GS10, and they took weeks and weeks to run in, I have to agree that at first they did sound a bit harsh, but a good thrashing for a few weeks resulted in everything filling out nicely.

I brought all three products at the same time so no idea which part took the most running in, but at Richer Sounds and Seven Oaks the advise was to run in for a very long time, and they were right

Now I turn them on for about 15 mins before I am going to use the system and now there is no trace of hardness, but it really did sound rough for the first few days.

On the loudness front my previous speakers were MA RS1 which I still have they are rated as 91db and my current MA GS10 are rated at 89db, and I have to say that whilst the golds are deffinately a better speaker especially in the base, that small diffence in sensitivty means I have to crank the volume up a fair bit more with the golds than I did with the silvers.

Finally I have found that by and large when you take a hike up in quality when upgrading your hifi, better quality stuff does seem to make you reach for the volume. I am not sure if this is because less distortion/ better quality makes your music sound as though you need more volume. The only exception to this I have experianced is Naim kit which always sounds loud and fast
 

Tesler

New member
Oct 2, 2007
38
0
0
Fortunately for me I don't really have any neighbours.My HiFi is in a conservatory, hard floors, one solid wall where the HiFi is located and the rest is double glazed all round with Glass ceiling.I don't have much in the way of soft furnishings in there and the room size is about 25ft X 20ft. I don't know if this makes any difference to the sound of the amp or not.I get a louder sound from the Pioneer with the volume just under the no 2 position on the knob then I did from the 740A at -18db. I wonder if the input sensitivity on the Cambridge isn't that high or maybe my Marantz CD63SE hasn't got enough output to do it justice or something like that?

But whatever it is the 740A doesn't sound as good as the A-400 with my set up.

Marantz CD63SE CD Player

Pioneer A400 Amp

Project Audio Debut II Turntable

Nakamichi DR2 Cassette Deck

B&W DM-602 S2 Loudspeakers
QED XT Anniversary Speaker CableCustom Design Speaker Stands

I do have a CA 640 Phono stage aswell.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Cheers Guys, I'll have a look into CA 740 and other suggestions. Thanks for the heads up on the mail order from riche sounds - this means I can hear my beautiful missions on them.

I just got the specs for the Argonauts from mission they are as:-

Mission 780 Argonaut
Enclosure Type: 2-Way Tuned Reflex
Frequency Response: (ñ 3dB) 30Hz -20kHz
Sensitivity: SPL/M @ 1w 95dB
Crossover Frequency: 1.7 kHz
Effective Volume: 55 Litres
Nominal Impedance: 8 W
Recommended Amplifier Power: 50 -200W
Cabinet Dimensions: (H x W x D) 950 x 260 x 320 (mm)
Finish: Black Ash, Walnut, and Grey
Weight: (Per Loudspeaker) 28kg

Unfortunately, I don't think the budget will be great enough to accomadate a 200W amp for a while... I can hear the rest of the street breathing a bit lighter as I type. Aham though.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Upright - from your figures above, the Missions have quite a high sensitivity of 95dB, so I wouldn't have thought you'd need a 200W amp to drive them succesfully. Andrew, Clare et al will be able to advise better than me though, but wanted to point out that sensitivity is a better indication of amp requirements than just the max power rating.

Cheers

bloney
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Cheers Bloney - I knew I didn' have to supply 200w to them - would be nice to be able to though. They are very sensitive, looking at specs on some current speakers, I've seen that in comparison they do well or is that a bad thing? I know it means more sound for less power... Anyways I'm a bit blinkered with them as I know how good they are and it's a personal "mission" if you will to make them sing again.

On reading quite a few reviews on the Azur amp, I have decided to up the budget slightly and get a NAD amplifier, the C352 and thier CD player, the C542 C. I've read many reviews on these and most of them rate them at the top in thier pice range. I also see What HIFI awarded them. The main drawbacks listed are of build quality, but the impression I get is that it is mostly the asthetics that people worry about and no the actual working parts. So if treated properly it shouldn't really be an issue should it? The C352 also pumps out 80W/ch so is comfortably inside the minimum spec'd by Mission.

Anybody on here have any pointers on the NAD poducts? I will be paying £580 for the 2 - is that too high? I'm waiting for a guy to come back to me on whether he'll let his go for £150 one went on ebay for that the other day.

Thanks so much for your advice guys.
 

Thaiman

New member
Jul 28, 2007
360
2
0
[quote user="Tesler"]

But whatever it is the 740A doesn't sound as good
as the A-400 with my set up.
[/quote]

Personally I think Cambridge Audio's cd players are better than their amps. The 740A is a very good amp for the price, Have you try it with any other speakers??? Having said that, look at your list, I can see your system have a very good Synergy anyway + the A400 AMP is a classic in the absolute sense...many people find it hard to move on from them even it as old as Mr Burn from The Simpsons.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
i read a couple of reviews where the cambridge 640a amp was described as being better value than the cd player so i guess its all rather subjective. what i do know is that i have an azur 640a v1 amp and it is excellent. Plenty of poke and punch and can drive my S1s effortlessly. indeed i previously had an Arcam a75+ amp , which cost about £470, and the £300 cambridge killed it in the punch and bass dept. If anything i found the cambridge to be a tad rounded off in the treble compared to the arcam but once i added a power amp it opened it up very nicely. if i were you i would have no fears about buying a cambridge, if you havent bought something else already by now!
 

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts