Upgrade from Arcam FMJ A28

Tapper82

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Apr 6, 2024
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Hi I would like to ask peoples thoughts on a upgrade path from my Arcam FMJ A28.

My speakers are the B&W DM603 s2. From 1999 from the tag on the tweeter cone in side the cabinet.
I play my music from my PC {Spotify} and my DAC is the IFI Zen v2.

I was thinking that I can get rid of the DAC and use an amp with a built-in USB DAC.

Cambridge Audio CXA81 £899
Roksan Blak £1600

I never heard of the Blak but they are trying to get rid of them in Richer Sounds.

Is the blak much better?
Any more amps I should have a look at?
£1600 would be as mutch as I want to spend for now.

I want more of a wide sound stage. I feel the Arcam is not as good with vocals as I would like.


What do you lot think?
Thanks, Tapper
 
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Gray

Well-known member
Would I get more from upgradeing my DAC? Or new speackers as the B&Ws are old now?
You might get the odd person tell you otherwise, but most will tell you that a change of speakers will be vastly more noticeable than a change of DAC.

Always best to listen to any potential new speakers, with your amp, in your room.
And don't be surprised if they sound significantly different to a sound you may have become very familiar with (you may need to give them some time before judging them).
 

Tapper82

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You might get the odd person tell you otherwise, but most will tell you that a change of speakers will be vastly more noticeable than a change of DAC.

Always best to listen to any potential new speakers, with your amp, in your room.
And don't be surprised if they sound significantly different to a sound you may have become very familiar with (you may need to give them some time before judging them).
Yeah I did have Mission Volare V63 floorstanders before picking up the B&Ws up off Ebay. The B&Ws are mutche better sounding. My room is not the best tho. A bit boomy on the base because of a wooden floor. The thing I am after is a bigger soundstage. I can go to Richersounds to test out some speackers. I don't know what to test out tho. I know I want to upgrade, but not which part. lol I was thinking about upgrading the amp, because that is the one I have had the longest. I all so am not shure how far the speackers can go up the range of amps before being out classed. If you get what I am trying to say.
 
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Agree with @Gray

Speakers generally make the biggest difference.

If possible try and demo Totem Arros. They are tiny floorstanders that pack a real punch, and the stereo imaging is second to none within their price bracket. Most importantly, they work well with Arcam amplification.

Monitor Audio Silver & Gold also work a treat with Arcam, as does Focal.

However, it's always wise to demo as they all offer different sonic traits. Some you might like, others not so much.
 

Tapper82

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Apr 6, 2024
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Agree with @Gray

Speakers generally make the biggest difference.

If possible try and demo Totem Arros. They are tiny floorstanders that pack a real punch, and the stereo imaging is second to none within their price bracket. Most importantly, they work well with Arcam amplification.

Monitor Audio Silver & Gold also work a treat with Arcam, as does Focal.

However, it's always wise to demo as they all offer different sonic traits. Some you might like, others not so much.

Hi thanks for your reply.

I am from the UK hence me asking about speakers and amps that are sold in richer sounds.

As for the Totem Arros I don't think I could get the base I want from them.
https://www.whathifi.com/totem/arro/review

I will take a look at Monitor Audio and Focal.

Thanks for your input.

Would any of the amps I asked about be better than the FMJ A28?

I mite be mooving house soon so it's simple to change amp or dac speakers not so mutch. I don't know what the space will be like.
 
Hi thanks for your reply.

I am from the UK hence me asking about speakers and amps that are sold in richer sounds.

As for the Totem Arros I don't think I could get the base I want from them.
https://www.whathifi.com/totem/arro/review

I will take a look at Monitor Audio and Focal.

Thanks for your input.

Would any of the amps I asked about be better than the FMJ A28?

I mite be mooving house soon so it's simple to change amp or dac speakers not so mutch. I don't know what the space will be like.
Contrary to the review Totems have a deeper bass than the review might suggest. Obviously, because they have a small stature they won't go as deep as larger floorstanders. This is why I suggested a demo.

Other speakers that work well with Arcam is Dali and, I guess, Fyne Audio.

If you demo at Richer Sounds, they stock all if them except Totems.

I would certainly short list Dali Oberon 5, Monitor Audios & Fyne.

Not heard any Fyne speakers but certainly worth a listen.

I own Dali Rubicon 2, and they match well with my Leema, which has a similar tonal balance to Arcam.

As regards amps, you'll need to blag a demo at Richer Sounds.
 
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Gray

Well-known member
Any more amps I should have a look at?
£1600 would be as mutch as I want to spend for now.
You must surely consider one of Arcam's latest.
Even the A25 is below your budget - and it includes the USB input that you want.
(I wouldn't necessarily pre-judge its sound based on your Arcam).
Richer should be able to give you a listen.

Maybe compare PMC Prodigy 1 standmounts with the Prodigy 5 floorstanders while you're there too.
I had a (very brief) listen to the Prodigy 5 from what I think was a Rega Illicit.
I got just a hint of bass boominess - but that may be because I'm used to my own, small PMC standmounts - and also not used to whatever effect the Rega amp may have been having.

Your own personal taste is everything - especially when it comes to combinations of amps and speakers....and you've got plenty of choice.
 
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Hi thanks for your reply.

I am from the UK hence me asking about speakers and amps that are sold in richer sounds.

As for the Totem Arros I don't think I could get the base I want from them.
https://www.whathifi.com/totem/arro/review

I will take a look at Monitor Audio and Focal.

Thanks for your input.

Would any of the amps I asked about be better than the FMJ A28?

I mite be mooving house soon so it's simple to change amp or dac speakers not so mutch. I don't know what the space will be like.
The biggest mistake many people make is lumping a whole bunch of award winners together and expect a winning sound. It's all about getting the synergy right.

Out of my kit there's only two 5 star products, the rest are 3 & 4 star components.
 
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twinkletoes

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Op I think you need to ask yourself why you're upgrading what and you're missing? we could spend you're money like water here. And without an idea of what your missing and hoping to improve you're just pi@sing in the wind. Let me put it this way, If you want modern convinces such as streaming, HDMI arc, Roon and so on, well speakers aren't going to give you that but a streaming dac will.

I only say that as in one breath you talking about reducing box count in the next you mention changing speakers out of no where.

If you where to change anything id go down the connivance route with a Wim pro streamer, so you dont have to have your computer on to listen to music, that is where id start and its a cheap "Upgrade" and you're gaining something tangible that will make your hifi more usable.

In all honesty for the budget I think you'll be surprised how difficult it will be to truly be better those speakers. I find today 1600 quid in 2024 only really gets you the budget/mid range sound from 20 years back, sure the design are a tiny bit more refined these days, maybe! but its hardly night and day. There's only so much you can do with 4 pistons in 2 boxes. I know I struggled to find a replacement and didnt truly. Modern designs will sound anemic by comparison
 

Tapper82

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Apr 6, 2024
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Hi I am after more detail sound and a bigger wider sound stage.

I need a USB input as I play all my music off my PC as I am blind and use a screen reader to give me speech feed back of what's on the screen.

I play some flac files of my hard drive, but most stuff is from Spotify.

I had a dacmagic and changed to a zen dac v2. Wen I was looking at DACs it was hard to understand what ones were better than the ones reviewed on here. I got me the zen DAC v2 because I could get one for cheep from ebay. I did think about getting the Cambridge Audio DacMagic 200M. After reading the review I did not know if it would be a upgrade. The same gos for some of the amps reviewed.

I do use dt770 pros with the zen DAC v2.

Speakers make the biggest difference in sound, but the DAC is the cheapest part of my system. The speakers are the oldest.

I don't know what to upgrade. I guess I have the upgrade itch and don't know how to scratch it!

Sorry if you lot find this confusing.
 
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