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YAMAHA AS500 AND DALI ZENSOR 1

admin_exported

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Aug 10, 2019
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HI ALL

I am trying to build a budget hi-fi system...mainly to listen to jazz fusion. purchased the yamaha AS500...and looking to maybe add dali zensor 1 speakers... currently connected to old project debut turntable and old mordaunt short MS 3.10's....I am currently finding the amp lacking a bit of warmth...any suggestions on what speakers would be suitable please...thanks in advance
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I heard these the other day with the Yammy amp and a NAD C326BEE and TBH I wasnt overly impressed


The Monitor Audio BX2's or RX1's, B&W 685's & Dali Lektor 2's would be better suited IMO

What's your overall budget and also what cabling are you using (the likes of Chord CrimonPlus or CobraPlus interconnects along with Chord Carnival Silverscreen or Odyssey 2 speaker cable would help to calm a bright system down)
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I'd change the amp first, and see what the speakers sound like with a decent one.

Forget fancy cables - total waste of money and will affect nothing except your wallet.

If you can audition a Class A amp of any description or get your hands on some tube gear. Refurbished Quad II amps are a pretty good bet TBH, else go for a reasonable prices tube set - which normally means Chinese or Chinese sourced. Read up on Nutshell HiFi to learn about your system and why it sounds like it does.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
908
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Globs said:
I'd change the amp first, and see what the speakers sound like with a decent one.

Forget fancy cables - total waste of money and will affect nothing except your wallet.

If you can audition a Class A amp of any description or get your hands on some tube gear. Refurbished Quad II amps are a pretty good bet TBH, else go for a reasonable prices tube set - which normally means Chinese or Chinese sourced. Read up on Nutshell HiFi to learn about your system and why it sounds like it does.
So you're suggesting using a Class A amp, with an exponentially cheaper speaker like this Dali? And you'd ask the OP to change his nearly double the price amp to suit the cheaper speaker?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Globs said:
I'd change the amp first, and see what the speakers sound like with a decent one.

Forget fancy cables - total waste of money and will affect nothing except your wallet.

If you can audition a Class A amp of any description or get your hands on some tube gear. Refurbished Quad II amps are a pretty good bet TBH, else go for a reasonable prices tube set - which normally means Chinese or Chinese sourced. Read up on Nutshell HiFi to learn about your system and why it sounds like it does.
Re: Changing Amp first - Rubbish... You can change amps & speakers around alike and it wont always make the right improvement... Try speakers first and see how that goes. If then the speakers still dont sound right then maybe take a look at the amp side...

Re: Cables (here we go again) - PROVE IT


Re: Tube amps etc and Nutshell Hifi... Might work for YOU but may not work for the next person. We all have DIFFERENT hearing so its horses for courses...
 
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Anonymous

Guest
manicm said:
Globs said:
I'd change the amp first, and see what the speakers sound like with a decent one.

Forget fancy cables - total waste of money and will affect nothing except your wallet.

If you can audition a Class A amp of any description or get your hands on some tube gear. Refurbished Quad II amps are a pretty good bet TBH, else go for a reasonable prices tube set - which normally means Chinese or Chinese sourced. Read up on Nutshell HiFi to learn about your system and why it sounds like it does.
So you're suggesting using a Class A amp, with an exponentially cheaper speaker like this Dali? And you'd ask the OP to change his nearly double the price amp to suit the cheaper speaker?
Dammit... You beat me to it
 

noogle

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Jul 29, 2010
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Whatever the OP does, wouldn't recommend 15W valve amps like Quad IIs with speakers like the 6ohm/86.5dB Zensors - particularly if partying is on the agenda.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
All comments noted, but the OP says: "I am currently finding the amp lacking a bit of warmth".

Given the amp is a cheap transistor one I think the solution is rather obvious and as stated by me. You'd be surprised how many speakers written off by people respond to a decent tube amp, harsh cold screeching becomes solid warm and sparkling.

Additionally you should not write off a 'low power' tube amp until you have tried one, they produce much more power than a solid state one rated at twice the power. Why? Because in general they have decent PSUs, something sadly lacking in modern budget boxes. If you really want power, depth, thumping bass and a clear treble try a 40wpc push-pull tube amp - especially a KT88 or GU50/FU50 one.

Finally, changing pieces of wire in a vain attempt to soften the treble of an over-bright transistor amp is futile and pointless. Physics already proves this, unless you have such a feeble pre-amp and such a capacitive cable that it rolls off like a single order filter - but that is not the case here. The problem is a cheap screeching amp that needs to be changed for a decent one. Cables are irrelevant and a waste of amplifier funds.
 

Cypher

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Jun 8, 2007
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I like the speakers........the zensor 1 is really good for the money.

I would change the amp........the A-S500 is a very clinical sounding amp to my ears. Try the nad c326 or marantz pm6003, both better than the yamaha.

Just my opinion ;)
 
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Anonymous

Guest
"purchased the yamaha AS500..."

If the op has just purchased the amp, why would he want to change it??
Why not suggest some warmer sounding speakers, that aren't expensive. The clue is in the "..budget system".

The B&W 685's were a "warm pair" but maybe above the price range. How about the mission MX1's or the MA bx2's?
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
908
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IMO the OP has a fine amp, he's bought it and he should keep it for now, all suggestions that he replace it are not helpful at all.

Soulfantasy - try the 685s out - the Yam has enough power to push them nicely - and these speakers like to be pushed - they might have the warmth you're looking for - but they're not exactly forgiving speakers .They're also relatively flexible when it comes to placement.

As you're looking for warmth - I'd say narrow it down to the 685s, MA RS1s, Rega RS1 or RS3 (budget permitting), KEF Q100/300. None of these are exactly cheap, but they will make a good long-term hifi investment.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I forgot to mention that if you're open to 2nd hand speakers then the likes of the B&W 602 S2's or S3's would work very well with the Yamaha amp as would Acoustic Energy AE109's or Neo 3's (if you're open to floorstanding speakers also)
 

rich51080

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Jul 24, 2007
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I'd personally look at Wharfdale,Tannoy or Monitor Audio.

I have heard the Yamaha with Wharfdale and have to admit it sound warm and vibrant. Makes you want to tap your feet to the beat.

B&W are to me "lazy" speakers - Need lots of power and do sound flat with some amps/sources.

I own B&W 705 and they work with Naim well but having heard the Yamaha I would go for some Wharfdales. Spend some money on Chord speaker wire and your all set. Avoid QED unless you like bright sound.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Based on what I've read here, it seems that some Dynaudio standmount speakers is what you're looking for.

Never heard them, though.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Personally I think the combination of that amp and the B&W 602 would be enough to put someone off music together. Whenever I have listened to those at hi-fi shows the immediate thing that strikes me is a dreadful harsh coloured sound, that perhaps people today assume is 'detail' and 'clarity', rather than the ear offending noise it is.

I know B&W are big advertizers so their products always review well, but you can also read between the lines. For instance a review will go on a length about how great the latest model is. When the next model comes out the reviewer then points out the boxy, compressed sound of the previous model having been eliminated in the latest super model that is great in every respect. This goes on ad infinitum.

Sorry OP but you have bought a typical screechy amp - lots of people do it, most amps are the same, nothing to be ashamed about. If you really want a decent transistor amp try RE Designs, and have a read of Positive Feedback to point in the right direction.

BTW the reason the amp is screechy is the design. It's a high-gain highly non-linear amp with bags of cross-over distortion, all made nice again by a whopping global negative feedback loop wrapped all the way around. Sadly that loop also acts as a harmonic multiplier so you get greater high odd-order harmonics (the ones that sound unpleasant) that you should, and the TIM (Transient intermodulation distortion) suffers as the internals of the amp puff and wheeze to keep the signal in check. They measure a low THD at 1kHz, but sound pretty ropey.

With a class A you lose the cross-over distortion - the main reason they sound better. You also tend to be biasing the deviced in a more linear region - another reason they sound better. Then class A tends to draw a continuous power from the PSU, so the PSU doesn't have to play the music like in a class B, so you remove most of the PSU from the music. Ironically the more linear an amp is, the less bad effects GNFB has on it too, so you will also win there. Tube amps have similar clear physical reasons why they sound better but I'll not go into that here.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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Globs said:
Personally I think the combination of that amp and the B&W 602 would be enough to put someone off music together. Whenever I have listened to those at hi-fi shows the immediate thing that strikes me is a dreadful harsh coloured sound, that perhaps people today assume is 'detail' and 'clarity', rather than the ear offending noise it is.

I know B&W are big advertizers so their products always review well, but you can also read between the lines. For instance a review will go on a length about how great the latest model is. When the next model comes out the reviewer then points out the boxy, compressed sound of the previous model having been eliminated in the latest super model that is great in every respect. This goes on ad infinitum.

Sorry OP but you have bought a typical screechy amp - lots of people do it, most amps are the same, nothing to be ashamed about. If you really want a decent transistor amp try RE Designs, and have a read of Positive Feedback to point in the right direction.

BTW the reason the amp is screechy is the design. It's a high-gain highly non-linear amp with bags of cross-over distortion, all made nice again by a whopping global negative feedback loop wrapped all the way around. Sadly that loop also acts as a harmonic multiplier so you get greater high odd-order harmonics (the ones that sound unpleasant) that you should, and the TIM (Transient intermodulation distortion) suffers as the internals of the amp puff and wheeze to keep the signal in check. They measure a low THD at 1kHz, but sound pretty ropey.

With a class A you lose the cross-over distortion - the main reason they sound better. You also tend to be biasing the deviced in a more linear region - another reason they sound better. Then class A tends to draw a continuous power from the PSU, so the PSU doesn't have to play the music like in a class B, so you remove most of the PSU from the music. Ironically the more linear an amp is, the less bad effects GNFB has on it too, so you will also win there. Tube amps have similar clear physical reasons why they sound better but I'll not go into that here.
I happen to agree with this, and have been encouraging people to try Class A........but if you use language that is too forthright, you may end up alienating them to what is otherwise good advice.

I intend no offence as I'm only interested in promoting the musicality of Class A. I currently use Musical Fidelity AMS35i, which gives me great enjoyment.

Cno
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
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Globs, you're taking many liberties with the truth here - stretching those liberties to lies in fact. How much more grain and distortion does the Yamaha AS500 have than any other 300 quid amplifier?

2ndly true Class A amps are very expensive and scarce to come by.

3rd, valve amps are equally expensive - the good ones anyway.

4th, you are right when you say that the B&W 602 S3 and the Yamaha AS500 will not be a good pair - as they're both naturally bright components. Where you're wrong is saying reviewers follow a pattern - well not in this case - the 602 S3 is still a universally praised speaker, and I have not come a single description of 'boxy' being applied to it.

You're not being helpful to the OP at all.

What I woud suggest the OP do is take his amp to his preferred dealer, and audition with 3 speakers. If he's still unhappy, then he can consider trading/selling his amp as a last resort.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I love Musical Fidelity, one of the more pioneering brands - that amp you have looks great!

It's a shame not everyone can hear one, it's only when you hear a decent amp you realise how poor the others are! I must admit I'm guilty of owning a class-A amp too - the Usher R1.5, although my SEP is currently in use so the Usher makes a handy 40kg side table..
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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Globs said:
I love Musical Fidelity, one of the more pioneering brands - that amp you have looks great!

It's a shame not everyone can hear one, it's only when you hear a decent amp you realise how poor the others are! I must admit I'm guilty of owning a class-A amp too - the Usher R1.5, although my SEP is currently in use so the Usher makes a handy 40kg side table..
Thank you for the kind words, and IMO Class A is the only way to go.......the trouble is, that it's not for everyone. My mission has been trying to get it on peoples' audition list, so that they can at least get to hear one - but it's "baby steps". Like you, I feel passionately about how music should sound but you can't force people to your POV, only encourage them. :)

Cno
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
908
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CnoEvil said:
Globs said:
I love Musical Fidelity, one of the more pioneering brands - that amp you have looks great!

It's a shame not everyone can hear one, it's only when you hear a decent amp you realise how poor the others are! I must admit I'm guilty of owning a class-A amp too - the Usher R1.5, although my SEP is currently in use so the Usher makes a handy 40kg side table..
Thank you for the kind words, and IMO Class A is the only way to go.......the trouble is, that it's not for everyone. My mission has been trying to get it on peoples' audition list, so that they can at least get to hear one - but it's "baby steps". Like you, I feel passionately about how music should sound but you can't force people to your POV, only encourage them. :) Cno
It's one thing to espouse the merits of an amp that costs thousands, and encourage a buyer who's budget extends to a few hundred.

Your comments and the other's 'kind words' are meaningless to the OP's issue at hand.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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manicm said:
CnoEvil said:
Globs said:
I love Musical Fidelity, one of the more pioneering brands - that amp you have looks great!

It's a shame not everyone can hear one, it's only when you hear a decent amp you realise how poor the others are! I must admit I'm guilty of owning a class-A amp too - the Usher R1.5, although my SEP is currently in use so the Usher makes a handy 40kg side table..
Thank you for the kind words, and IMO Class A is the only way to go.......the trouble is, that it's not for everyone. My mission has been trying to get it on peoples' audition list, so that they can at least get to hear one - but it's "baby steps". Like you, I feel passionately about how music should sound but you can't force people to your POV, only encourage them. :) Cno
It's one thing to espouse the merits of an amp that costs thousands, and encourage a buyer who's budget extends to a few hundred.

Your comments and the other's 'kind words' are meaningless to the OP's issue at hand.
You are perfectly correct, and appologies to the OP for the detour. I wasn't suggesting that an expensive Class A was the answer in this case, but explaining my position to Globs without causing arguement.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
manicm: I realise that Tube amps can be expensive yes, but they don't need to be, and not all are. For instance Music Angel amps are pretty cheap, £130 gets a Mini L1 - a fun little amp, the Sweet Peach SE used to be cheap but seems to have almost doubled in price but the trusty and very good sounding Yaqin MC-10L is still around £269 and is the only one I'd recommend to anyone with no electronics expertise as it sounds good out of the box and is a solid design.

So in fact for below £300 you can be into a competent EL34 class push-pull of around 40wpc clean tube power, and then follow an upgrade path with Russian 6N1P-EV input and driver tubes and then some classier EL34 tubes. In fact a relative has one and it sounds damn good.

Price is not the obstacle to decent hi-fi, knowledge is.
 

Clare Newsome

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Jun 4, 2007
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Globs said:
;">I know B&W are big advertizers so their products always review well, but you can also read between the lines.
Nonsense - advertising has NOTHING to do with how a product reviews - certainly not on WHF, anyway, I can promise you.

B&W have had good and bad reviews, same as anyone else- it's all down to comparative product quality, nothing else.. Plenty of non-advertisers win five-star ratings and Awards. Indeed in our current issue, the cover story Group Test sees a non- advertiser beat B&W, Arcam and others.

Please desist with groundless insinuations and stick to facts, Thanks!
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I appreciate your position Clare, suffice it to say that I do know some people in the industry who have worked at big UK audio firms. However I have always found WHF a pretty even handed magazine with some excellent reviews so we'll leave it at that.

I think we are also in the same position - witnessing a shrinking base of people interested in hi-fi, the reason why WHF moved into video and home entertainment I suspect. Most of this is down to the record companies falling standards of quality in my view - but some is down to the hi-fi industry as a whole. Many segments of the public don't even notice the quality now.

Perhaps WHF could start turning that around by introducing some new amplifier tests that de-throne the ruinous THD measurement? Setting some new industry standards that would help hi-fi gain popularity by setting the big manufacturers a target that is actually useful. Without something like this I can't see much of a market after the next decade, which is a shame.
 

Clare Newsome

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Globs said:
I appreciate your position Clare, suffice it to say that I do know some people in the industry who have worked at big UK audio firms. However I have always found WHF a pretty even handed magazine with some excellent reviews so we'll leave it at that.
Erm, no we won't leave it at that - you are again making groundless insinuations. I have presented you with clear evidence (and can provide plenty more examples) that advertising and reviews are unrelated on WHF. That means far more than anonymous 'people in the industry' whom can and do say anything that suits their world view - they don't set our agenda, we do. And it's an independent, impartial one.

Please consider this a final warning re such comments. Thanks!
 

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