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what power amp or intergrated amp for Monitor audio gold 300 floorstanders

paulg22

New member
Sep 14, 2017
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Hi what amp should I be looking at to power the Monitor Audio Gold 300 floorstanding speakers.

At the moment I have got them hooked up to the Cambridge Audio cxa60 intergrated amp. Should I be looking for something more powerful to get the full potential?
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
163
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4,595
Speakers and certainly will perform better with better amplification. I've read lots of people here mention that, monitor audio goes really well with arcam. Won't be long before everyone gets here with suggestions though :)
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
I'd agree on the arcam front, if the 300s have the same house sound as cheaper monitor audios which tend to be tuned for detail retrieval and treble. arcam is quite a smooth sound bass wise and not to harsh in the high frequencies, so if you match this with the monitor audios you can tame the speakers a bit.

But it depends on your tastes of the sound too as if you like lots of treble the arcam may tone the 300s down too much. The easiest thing is to trial lots of amps, but I really think it's necessary to spend at least the same amount of money on amps to speakers, and preferably more. If you can't now I'd aim to in the future as great speakers around £3k demand really good amplification. Lots of people in the uk spend more on electronics than speakers where great speakers from £2k plus are concerned. In the us I've seen on forums they don't spend much on amplification maybe to do with the fact we seem to have much better quality speakers at lower prices.

i think Cambridge audio would be a good match for monitor audio, generally good detail and dynamically. Rega, leema. Musical fidelity, Cyrus, also very good.
 

paulg22

New member
Sep 14, 2017
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Ah ok I better get some amps on demo. I got the gold 300`s because they had a good separation between bass, mid & tweeter.

Would It be best to use pre amp & power amp? Maybe bi amp or is that just a case of marginal gains?
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Really depends on intergrated v pre/power route as depends on the amp and it's quality. I've never really bi amped but just preferred to monoblock and it depends on speakers and/or amps too. What's your top budget ? I'm sure you'll get lots of suggestions if you state this on here, as well as from people who have monitor audios already.
 

paulg22

New member
Sep 14, 2017
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at a push £5000.

could I use the cambridge cxa60 I already have as a pre amp to the azure851w?
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
163
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4,595
Mark you are spoilt for choice actually :)

What is your source ? Do you stream or play vinyl or CD's. You can build a complete system with that budget. Depending on your source, people can suggest if a pre+power or integrated or even an excellent all in one could be a better approach.

And what is the size of your listening room and do you favour any particular genre of music
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
163
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4,595
the sound of the CA cxa60, you can make it better by changing it for a CA azur 851N and adding the azur 851w for amplification. Considering that the sensitivity of the speakers is 90db, you won't need more power than this.
 

paulg22

New member
Sep 14, 2017
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Ive got the cambridge cxn network streamer, cxc cd transport and the audio technica AT-LP5 turntable. so I listen through varios sources

I also use Spotify through the network player and use bluetooth dongle on the cxa 60 for youtube music etc
 

paulg22

New member
Sep 14, 2017
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I listen to lots of different music, Hip hop, rock, reggae, dance music to country,classic funk, soul even some opera etc etc.
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
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paulg22 said:
Ive got the cambridge cxn network streamer, cxc cd transport and the audio technica AT-LP5 turntable. so I listen through varios sources

I also use Spotify through the network player and use bluetooth dongle on the cxa 60 for youtube music etc
To my mind your setup is overly complex and would probably benefit from some simplification.

I would make the CXN the hub of the system, connecting the LP5 via usb and a bluetooth receiver into one of the digital inputs. Move on the CXA60 and buy a BFO power amplifier, using the 851w as the model to beat.

Everyone will recommend their own favourite but the 851w is powerful, neutral and pretty transparent, with bags of control, alternative amps may have more character which you may or may not like.
 
S

SemiChronic

Guest
I sometimes regret not going for the 851W. Dont get me wrong, im very happy with my amp.

But occasionally i think "Why did i buy a stupid integrated" . . At the time i couldnt demo one, and the lack of buttons and stuff on the front also scared me a little.

In hindsight i should have manned up and took home the 851W, instead of thinking what if?

There are some detailed reviews of the 8 series via google . .
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
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SemiChronic said:
I sometimes regret not going for the 851W. Dont get me wrong, im very happy with my amp.

But occasionally i think "Why did i buy a stupid integrated" . . At the time i couldnt demo one, and the lack of buttons and stuff on the front also scared me a little.

In hindsight i should have manned up and took home the 851W, instead of thinking what if?

There are some detailed reviews of the 8 series via google . .
This is a serious piece of kit, but it is not 'voiced' to sound different/musical, nor does it have the advantage of an impresive hi-end brand name. It is 'just' an amplifier, transparent, powerful but largely unassuming.
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
163
9
4,595
Is very well regarded in the reviews. Might not have the brand strength in the UK at the moment. But is doing extremely well in the US at the moment. Even the cxa80 is moving like hot cakes..

The weak brand perception is actually factored in the asking price. The same amp from a reputed house would have costed twice as much
 

CnoEvil

New member
Aug 21, 2009
556
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Hi Paul

With up to 5k to spend, you have the potential to do the speakers justice and put together a very good sounding system.

It is vital that you do as much demoing as possible with your speakers, because synergy is important. The sort of brands I would suggest you try are:

- Accuphase E370

- Luxman L-507UX or 550AXII

- Electrocompaniet ECI-5

- Sugden Masterclass IA-4

- Musical Fidelity Nu Vista 600

- Pathos Logos

- Lavardin IS Reference

- Devialet 130 Pro

- Classe Sigma 2200i

- Arcam A49
 

emcc_3

Well-known member
Feb 20, 2008
59
11
18,545
I would try Arcams, Roksan (now owned by MA so natural synergy there) and Rega (though might be a bit too forward). I personally can vouch both Arcams and Roksan go well with MA bronze and silver so should also have a synergy with the golds.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
I wouldn't bother with the Cambridge audio power amp mentioned. Especially since it's not going to fair as well as lots of much better quality amps a bit more expensive and within the budget. I'd be trying brands like musical fidelity, naim, Cyrus, leema etc. I'd avoid brands like roksan and Rotel and Cambridge audio for amplification. They tend to occupy budget ends if market. Roksan is not quite as dynamic as these other brands and is a bit lazy in bass which is its reputation, Brands from likes of musical fidelity and leema are some of the best you can get at their price, Cambridge audio isn't in the class of these brands on amps, sources yes. I'd add rega but you want a much better intergrated than the elicit r.

The reason the Cambridge audio is doing well in the us is probably because they like huge power amplification but I'd be dubious about the Cambridge audio doing sound as well with such a huge power output for such a price, which to do it much better its usually the preserve of much pricier amps. You also don't need all that power at normal listening levels, so go for all out quality in the brand. I'd be thinking of distortion and just being too forceable a sound with all that power and there probably wouldn't be much control of bass. If I was you I'd try some intergrated amps around £2500 and go upwards from there in trials, as some of them will outclass that Cambridge audio amp by quite some margin. A Cyrus stereo 200 will be a lot better amp than that Cambridge audio around the same price, and you could add a pre dac. But I think some form of decent intergrated is the way to go I think, as the pricier ones are just as good as pre and power amp combos.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Ps the amps pmc are distributing are very good. Bryston is extremely good but probably out of budget, but the avm intergrateds are seriously good. How about too the pmc cor amplifier.
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2008
1,636
83
19,770
Disagree with the 'Quest'. I have heard Roksan Caspian with MAs of various descriptions and they match really well. The Caspian may not be the most powerful amps for retail but it's quality over quantity.

I would also look at Creek Evo 50 or 100. Again the synergy between older Creeks and MA sounded pukka, so can't see much changing with the newer models.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Yes but if you've got £5k to spend I don't think you'd do much better than your very own leema Tucana mark 2. A superb amplifier. But I still reckon my £8k of Cyrus signature pre and power amps would outclass it. (Tongue in cheek). I would though, wouldn't I. Particularly as I'm about to upgrade to mono x300 signature power amps.
 

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