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Spatially impaired person needs a budget amp

TeeF

Member
Feb 10, 2020
3
0
20
Dear all,

I'm in need of help. My music doesn't sound as good as I would like. And I don't have three thousand to drop on a new pair of active genelecs. But by halving my noodle/ vinyl purchase rations, I could manage roughly £300. I currently have a pair of wharfedale diamond 122's, a computer with s/pfdif, an audio technica LP-3 vinyl player and a POS AV receiver. So I would like to bring the amp from the status of free and sad to match the rest of my cheap but cheerful, workable setup. However, I'm currently very much limited when it comes to ability to demo hifi gear due to my location. Same goes for picking up used deals, even though I'm keeping my eyes open.

So requirements: Vinyl preferably via decent phono (although the lp3 does have a pre), streams and occasional cd's via computers s/pdif (although a separate DAC could be considered if money was saved on the amp), some kind of loudness control for quiet listening and enough power to get ~90 dB and be able to disable the loudness nonsense. Direct switch would be a benefit for those days.

I prefer a punchy and detailed, rhythmic delivery, lots of roots and funk records being played. Clarity is great but being overly tame and polite is not what I want.

I suppose the contestants are the usual ones.

Marantz pm6006 (Praised tone but with apparently a poorly shielded internals resulting in common problems with especially the digital inputs and the phono box..) I've also heard the pm6004 which sounded good but a bit limp (although could've been the speakers fault as well).

Onkyo 9010 or 9110. Particularly interested in the latter. Lacks a DAC though.

Yamaha 501. Don't know anything about this. I realize this is not made in Japan, but from past experiences with Yamaha, I would assume quality control would have to be at least equal if not better than the others.

Denon PMA-600ne. Don't know anything about this. Seems to tick a lot of boxes though.

Has anyone a/b'd these? The first two are reviewed on this site but the grains of salt needed might lead to severe hypernatremia.

Any input would be greatly appreciated, especially on how the tonal qualities compare and what the denon box is all about :)
 

Al ears

Moderator
Out of your list I have only heard the Yamaha and its a good choice if it ticks your boxes.
My brother has a Denon amp, higher up the chain than the one you indicate, but its very good.
 

knaithrover

Moderator
Nov 24, 2013
193
75
18,670
If i was you I'd get this.....

 
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TeeF

Member
Feb 10, 2020
3
0
20
"and enough power to get ~90 dB"

S*d living next door to you :mad: Ever considered headphones?
While I do own a nice pair of quality headphones and I do appreciate the pointless remark, rest assured, I'd never use that kind of volume unless I was sure it didn't bother anybody or if it wasnt fit for the situation. But since I'm fortunate enough not to live next to people like you, I actually want to invite friends over occasionally and listen to music outside. This includes my neighbor who has an awesome music collection for those long summer evenings. Sometimes there is even dancing included. I know all this might sound weird to you, but worry not, all is under control.

Also thank you all for the actual suggestions. I'll give yamaha a go!
 

Tammytastic

Well-known member
Mar 18, 2018
8
2
520
I think the downsides on the Marantz are down to a few issues as it's such a popular amp. And it's popular for a reason - for that budget go for it. I'm amazed by the change it made to my system by admittedly poor amp choices before
 

TeeF

Member
Feb 10, 2020
3
0
20
Thank you everyone for your input. I actually managed to make it to an actual city to test some amps. In store 1, I had the chance to demo yamaha s 501 against the marantz 6006. I was not sure which one I preferred. Generally, I thought the marantz was better when it came to clarity and general tone but it was slightly lacking in... I don't know, enthusiasm and percussive touch? It was very much a draw. In other store I got to A/b an onkyo 9110 with the marantz and clearly preferred the onkyo. Again, marantz was clearer and sounded really good, but the onkyo just made things groove with great punch and good enough clarity. I also tried onkyo 9010 and the marantz and out of those two, I would've probably got the marantz.
I ended up getting the onkyo 9130 and I'm sure I got the one that suited my preferences and needs the best.
 

gasolin

Well-known member
Mar 17, 2013
952
160
19,070
The denon you mentioned would also be an options since they have bluetooth so you can listen to music on your hifi system thru your phone or tablet
 

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