Roksan Kandy LIII L3 vs Marantz PM6003

bemaniac

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2010
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Hello I have the Marantz for my KEF Q500 floorstanders which I love and wondered if the knocking sound the speakers start to make above 50% volume is because the Marantz isn't upto the job of controlling the drivers at very high volumes.

The Roksan 2nd Hand is in my price range if I sell the PM6003 and is this going to give me more of what I'm looking for?
 
I've no idea about these new Kefs. However, having listened to numerous Marantz amps (not your model) and had a LIII on home dem a few years ago. In the main the Kandy is a lovely machine, a real bullsy sound. That said, in my living room and with RS6 speakers, and with certain styles of music, it was a little too boistrous for my tastes - could be just the ticket for you though.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
If control is what you're after, there are not many ways to do this cheaply whilst keeping musicality in the ballpark. The Roksan is a good amp, but they're very clinical sounding compared to others.

For cheap (£300 ish) the MF A3 is as good as you can get from both worlds. The next step in upgrade terms from that whilst keeping control and musicality as key ideas, would probably be a larger MF amp, a308 or similar. Though, the Sugden A21 is supposed to be very good too. The Arcam A18 would also be available for this kinda price range in the used market and has a lovely finesse about it.
 
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the record spot

Guest
Ideally, you need an amp that'll deliver a high current and a good power supply to control the speaker drivers. The Roksan's rated at 120w, so it might be worth a go. Alternatively, do consider - if only to discard - the AV amps from Onkyo which Noel Keywood at Hi Fi World rates well in his reviews. The TX-SR608 (previous generation model) apparently has a nice smooth sound to it (very listenable, not brash by all accounts) and of course, the other great thing is you can assign the onboard amps (being multichannel) so you can bi-amp. :bounce:

There's a common wisdom that AV amps don't cut the mustard against stereo ones and while that may have been true once upon a time, I think that gap's decreasing all the time to the point that, if it exists at all with some brands (like Onkyo for isntance), it's decreasing.

The other benefit of course is not only are AV amps multichannel, they're multi-format and usually offer a decent DAC option that will take other inputs. If that functionality is on your radar or you have some SACD or DVD-A discs or other hi-res formats to play with, then yer typical integrated is left far behind.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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Monstrous said:
If control is what you're after, there are not many ways to do this cheaply whilst keeping musicality in the ballpark. The Roksan is a good amp, but they're very clinical sounding compared to others.

For cheap (£300 ish) the MF A3 is as good as you can get from both worlds. The next step in upgrade terms from that whilst keeping control and musicality as key ideas, would probably be a larger MF amp, a308 or similar. Though, the Sugden A21 is supposed to be very good too. The Arcam A18 would also be available for this kinda price range in the used market and has a lovely finesse about it.

This is great advice. If you are enjoying your system, don't rush into changing it just for more power. Make sure you have the budget to do it right, and then do a lot of demos to find the right solution. In my case that's amps from companies like Sugden, Pure Sound, Electrocompaniet and Musical Fidelity.

Cno
 
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the record spot

Guest
There's the assumption that you need to have a big budget there ("...have the budget to do it right...") isn't there? The budget to do it right is the means to be able to control the movements of the speaker by the amplifier, that's the critical thing. Good current delivery and power. Not to be able to turn the wick up willy nilly, but to handle the dynamic peaks or when you want to push it harder.

I love the Sansui AU-217, it's a great little amp and still sounds good. Push it beyond the 10 o'clock position on the volume dial though and it gets ragged, the music gets rough. Do the same with the 717, 100wpc and high current and it just sails through. Had it up to the 1 o'clock position and it's still trying to break sweat. Yes, it's a better amp - dual mono/twin transformers - but it's got plenty in check when it's pushed. Simply saying that you need to spend more to get a better amp is a tad wide of the mark IMO, when the reality is there are many amps out there that could be up to the task without throwing the wallet at the likes of Electrocompaniet or Sugden or some high end MF overcharger costing thousands.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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the record spot said:
There's the assumption that you need to have a big budget there ("...have the budget to do it right...") isn't there? The budget to do it right is the means to be able to control the movements of the speaker by the amplifier, that's the critical thing. Good current delivery and power. Not to be able to turn the wick up willy nilly, but to handle the dynamic peaks or when you want to push it harder.

I love the Sansui AU-217, it's a great little amp and still sounds good. Push it beyond the 10 o'clock position on the volume dial though and it gets ragged, the music gets rough. Do the same with the 717, 100wpc and high current and it just sails through. Had it up to the 1 o'clock position and it's still trying to break sweat. Yes, it's a better amp - dual mono/twin transformers - but it's got plenty in check when it's pushed. Simply saying that you need to spend more to get a better amp is a tad wide of the mark IMO, when the reality is there are many amps out there that could be up to the task without throwing the wallet at the likes of Electrocompaniet or Sugden or some high end MF overcharger costing thousands.

That is not the assumption I was trying to convey."Don't rush into changing it"; "do lots of demos to find the right solution" and "In my case", more accurately represents my sentiment.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
the record spot said:
Simply saying that you need to spend more to get a better amp is a tad wide of the mark IMO, when the reality is there are many amps out there that could be up to the task without throwing the wallet at the likes of Electrocompaniet or Sugden or some high end MF overcharger costing thousands.

The MF A3 as I recommended will cost you less than £300, so only a tad more than the brand new Marantz PM-6003. It's dual mono with twin power supplies and class A/B biased. There's simply no comparison to any other amp for the money, it's absolutely stellar. I tested my own driving B&W 804's to the 2 O'clock mark, didn't even bother it.

I don't think anyone here meant you have to spend thousands, but obviously you're not going to do it with lunch money. Budget in this case, means £300-ish.
 

bemaniac

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2010
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The A3 is number 1 on my list after checking prices out. Just wait for a £300 one to appear first :)

2nd on the list is probably still the KandyL3

Thanks so far and it'll be a while before I truly choose one - anyone else that has suggestions please chip in!
 
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Anonymous

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bemaniac said:
The A3 is number 1 on my list after checking prices out. Just wait for a £300 one to appear first :)

2nd on the list is probably still the KandyL3

Thanks so far and it'll be a while before I truly choose one - anyone else that has suggestions please chip in!

Expect to pay up to £325 for a mint, boxed A3. About £375 for the same condition of A3.2. Probably £400 for the equivelant A3.5.

As for other suggestions, the Arcam A18 is definetly worth a listen. :)
 
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the record spot

Guest
Monstrous said:
the record spot said:
Simply saying that you need to spend more to get a better amp is a tad wide of the mark IMO, when the reality is there are many amps out there that could be up to the task without throwing the wallet at the likes of Electrocompaniet or Sugden or some high end MF overcharger costing thousands.

The MF A3 as I recommended will cost you less than £300, so only a tad more than the brand new Marantz PM-6003. It's dual mono with twin power supplies and class A/B biased. There's simply no comparison to any other amp for the money, it's absolutely stellar. I tested my own driving B&W 804's to the 2 O'clock mark, didn't even bother it.

I don't think anyone here meant you have to spend thousands, but obviously you're not going to do it with lunch money. Budget in this case, means £300-ish.

If you're talking used kit then you're money goes further subject to the usual caveats around buying used gear. That wasn't the statement though and that's what I was getting at. None of the brands mentioned are cheap new and the remainder, barring the MF and the occasional Sugden gear is a tad on the rarer side used, rather like the high end Sansui kit of the late 70s. If the OP's happy to wait, then no issues and the MF gear looks nice.

Which is my other point about higher end kit; you're getting into the realms of design statement as well as audio one with some brands. That's not a problem, it might be what a buyer wants, but forsaking that appearance for something that delivers the same 'under the bonnet' can reap rewards and come in cheaper as well.
 

bemaniac

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2010
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Looks are not important when it comes to my Hi-fi, only the sound and getting that vice like grip on the mid to upper bass keeping the treble sweet.
 

bemaniac

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2010
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Yeah I looked at the AU717 it seems to have a massive following with upgrades and services advertised on ebay which you don't get for many models at all. Must be something real special.
 

matthewpiano

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Nov 23, 2007
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The Arcam A18 is OK, but nothing more. I wouldn't recommend it for you as it doesn't have much drive and struggles with speakers that present any sort of challenge. It couldn't grip a pair of B&W 686s and it didn't do much better with Quad 11Ls either. Potentially a superb amp but let down by its ability to grip and control speakers.
 

dannycanham

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May 5, 2009
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the record spot said:
There's a common wisdom that AV amps don't cut the mustard against stereo ones and while that may have been true once upon a time, I think that gap's decreasing all the time to the point that, if it exists at all with some brands (like Onkyo for isntance), it's decreasing.

The limit at which Onkyo uses conventional stereo design wisdom in its systems appears to go hand in hand with the limit imposed by the type of features in each system.

I would view that as Onkyo firmly believing in conventional stereo design wisdom and being aware that they are at times making compromises for features.

If they didn't they could produce their stereo systems alot cheaper by following their AV designs.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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It could be argued that Japenese makes have (by and large) had this philosophy since they first started to appear.

A quote from HiFi Review's "How to build a system" from May 1987 (only slightly pro British!):

"To start with, you have to be aware that there are two very different approaches to hi-fi. Firstly there is the vast range of predominantly Japenese equipment where facilities and flashing lights often outweigh the considerations of sound quality."

I think you can figure what the second approach is.

Views expressed are those of the HiFi press in years gone by, and do not necessarily coincide with my own. :read:

Cno
 
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the record spot

Guest
jalaba said:
@TRS, how is your AU717 compared to Sansui AU Alpha 707L Extra?

Hi jalaba, unfortunately, I've not had the pleasure or the chance to compare. The latter hasn't appeared on UK Ebay, while one which did appear on the Japanese site was going for arond £1000, plus around £200 shipping. Looked mint though, but not one I'd be picking up alas. I think it went out mainly for the Japanese market, so international editions might be limited. Apparently brilliant though. I'd take one in a heartbeat (if it was a bit nearer!).
 
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the record spot

Guest
bemaniac said:
Yeah I looked at the AU717 it seems to have a massive following with upgrades and services advertised on ebay which you don't get for many models at all. Must be something real special.

Your last sentence nailed it bemaniac. It is a very special amp.

You'll get one for around £200, allowing a further £100 for a service. It kicks the backside off anything I've heard and is ahead of amps like Harman's HK990, Exposure's 3010 S2 and Leema's Mk II Pulse. So we're talking amps in the £1000-1300 bracket. Note that that's comparing it with amps which are feature-laden (HK990) and minimalist (the other two). Sound quality is not an issue here, so there's no need to buy into the 'minimalism over features' view. I don't see many McIntosh owners complaining either and that kit costs thousands with more features than you'd ever need...!

There's a firm on Ebay in the US (Service 55 being their handle) who do probably the best repairs and upgrades out there. But that immediately adds about £200 for shipping there and back in addition to the parts and labour costs. Pricey. Easier to buy another one from their probably as they take them to bits and effectively rebuild from scratch.

If you see one, check it over, ask the seller questions if you can't view it directly - scratchy volume pots, selectors, or the amp going into protection mode or the like - and find out if it's been serviced. If all's good, just buy it. The last one went on Ebay for about £220 I think. Prices are going up for good examples and people are realising how good a brand Sansui really were.
 

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