If not a Sonos amp, then what?

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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Hi all,

we'll be moving house in the next month or two and whereas now we have a dining room and a kitchen, we'll be moving to a kitchen/diner. Today I have a ZP90 in the kitchen and a ZP120 in the dining room.

I was thinking initially of using the ZP120 in the new kitchen/diner, but then got to wondering. What would I need to spend on a second hand stereo amp to use with the ZP90 instead that would give me a better sound and what would it be?

The speakers are little acoustimass jobs - 2 cubes and a sub (yes, yes I know, but they work in the space allowed)

Any thoughts?
 

visionary

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Apr 4, 2008
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Hi Lee

You don't really explain what you hope to gain. You imply that you know/suspect that your speakers are maybe not ideal.

What are you trying to achieve by changing to another amp (or is it that you have plans for the ZP120 elsewhere?)
 

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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visionary said:
Hi Lee

You don't really explain what you hope to gain. You imply that you know/suspect that your speakers are maybe not ideal.

What are you trying to achieve by changing to another amp (or is it that you have plans for the ZP120 elsewhere?)
Hi,

yup, I know the speakers aren't the best. I guess my question boils down to....

If I was to spend say £150-£200 on a stereo amp (new or used), would that give me a noticeable increase in performance? The ZP120 could then be used in another room or potentially to create a garden zone. If I had to spend more that that, it probably wouldn't be a cost I could justify right now.
 

Clare Newsome

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Jun 4, 2007
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If it were me, I wouldn't do anything until i'd seen/heard the current set up in the new house- plus assessed the space available for all the kit once the rest of the furniture etc is in place.

That ZP120/Bose combo could/should sound different in an open kitchen/diner than it does in a smaller kitchen, for starters.,...

Once you've experienced your existing kit in situ, then i'd start experimenting - eg maybe borrowing an amp from a mate?
 

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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Oh no, that won't do at all. I need to plan to spend some money and have something new and shiny in my life ;)
 

BenLaw

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Nov 21, 2010
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As an alternative, and for a little over budget, how about a pair of small actives with the ZP90, such as from Adam Audio or KRK?
 

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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BenLaw said:
As an alternative, and for a little over budget, how about a pair of small actives with the ZP90, such as from Adam Audio or KRK?
Thanks Ben, I'll have a look at that.
 

visionary

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Apr 4, 2008
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Think I'm correct in saying the good thing to remember about the ZP120 is that it runs cool being Class D. This means you can hide it somewhere.

Then your new bright shiny could be on display in another location
 

eggontoast

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Feb 23, 2011
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What about ditching the amplifier altogether and getting a couple of Sonos play 3's and use them as a stereo pair in your kitchen/diner. Just a thought as you are already Sonos enabled.
 

The_Lhc

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Oct 16, 2008
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eggontoast said:
What about ditching the amplifier altogether and getting a couple of Sonos play 3's and use them as a stereo pair in your kitchen/diner. Just a thought as you are already Sonos enabled.
That would cost more like £500 though...
 

eggontoast

Well-known member
Feb 23, 2011
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The_Lhc said:
eggontoast said:
What about ditching the amplifier altogether and getting a couple of Sonos play 3's and use them as a stereo pair in your kitchen/diner. Just a thought as you are already Sonos enabled.
That would cost more like £500 though...
oops sorry forgot about the budget constraints.
 

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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Yep, I'd be topping out around £200. And that's £200 without the "Escape to the country" mystery house that's actually twice the budget and not at what you'd asked to see style of "around" :)

The obvious thing is to wait, but as an academic exercise in the meantime - has anyone found an improvement by adding a relatively inexpensive amp?

There seems to be a range of stuff on eBay around that price point, but I have never bought a stereo amp before so don't really know what I'm looking at.
 

scene

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Sep 25, 2008
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Although I tend to agree with Clare, I know what you mean about the shiny new toys... >) I"ve used an arcam A85 with my zp90 and it sounds sweet, so much so that I'm getting another zp90 to go with the a85 in due course, once the building work's complete and I have some money again... I have seen a85's for around £200, but they tend to go for nearer 250. Cracking amp, but I think the speakers may be the limiting factor here. Hmm....
 

Lee H

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Oct 7, 2010
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Thanks Scene, this is what I'm getting at :)

Have you got a 120? Do think it's a step up?
 

scene

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Sep 25, 2008
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Lee H said:
Thanks Scene, this is what I'm getting at :)

Have you got a 120? Do think it's a step up?
No I've only got a zp90 and four s5s. Soon to get another zp90 and a third one in due course... Sonos must love me :)
 

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