you for always being there . . ."
questions this time. I just wanted to wish you and yours a happy, peaceful joyous holiday.
Thank you for always being there to help me sort through the questions, the gear, the
concepts, etc. of this awesome hobby we both enjoy. No one out there comes even remotely
close to you and the TAB staff. Best wishes for the holidays and the upcoming new
year. Health, peace and prosperity!
amp for KEF LS50s?
looking to buy a pair of KEF LS50s very shortly and would be greatly interested in your
views on the most synergistic integrated amplifiers for these speakers. I enjoyed your review of the Arcam A19 (you are one of my favorite hi-fi writers!)
and duly noted your remarks regarding the successful pairing with the LS50s. I have the
Arcam on a short list, but I am very keen to know what other integrateds marry
successfully with the KEFs. I'm not limited to budget amps, but at the same time cannot
afford anything with an uber prefix!
glad you are considering the A19; its easy to overlook simply because it is so
affordable. Used with the LS50s, it really is half of a pairing thats greater than
the sum of its parts.
other amplifiers would I consider, if I was prepared to spend a bit more money? First up,
let me just say that the LS50s are definitely worth the effort, especially if theres
no option to look at larger, wider-bandwidth models. Even then, youd be looking at a
pretty serious step up in price to get the benefits of the bigger box without sacrificing
the LS50s coherence and integration.
Id look at two amps in particular. If I wanted greater transparency and
detail and greater musical insight than the A19, Id look at the Lavardin IS
Reference. It wont go as loud as the A19, but it is a lot more refined and seriously
engaging on a musical level.
the A19 but just want more of what it gives you, look at the Naim SuperNait, a great match
for the LS50. Just dont use NACA5 cable with the combination or it will sound clumsy
and youll lose the remarkable fluidity that the little Naim can supply.
if you want the best of both worlds, try the Arcam A49, with its innovative class-G output
stage. Quick, clean and super powerful, it was John Dawsons response to the
challenge of driving the Blades. Combine it with the LS50 and the results are spectacular:
a classic big-amp/small-box combination.
if you can find one, Neodios NR-800 or the bigger NR-1500 are more powerful
alternatives to the Lavardin, with some of the same heritage and design DNA. If you love
that clean, grainless and unobstructed clarity but want more grunt, theyre just the
ticket. -Roy Gregory
you recommend I try to audition an Esoteric K-03 player against my Ayre C-5xeMP as a
possible upgrade? I cant afford the K-01, and a good friend of mine took my Esoteric
X-01; the C-5xeMP performs as well, just as your review from years ago stated.
advice for anyone looking for a new universal player is unconventional, because the
product I recommend is not strictly for playing files (although it will do this) and no
longer made. Keep your eyes peeled for an Ayre DX-5, then have
Ayre upgrade it to a DSD unit, which will cost you another $1250. You'll not just have
a terrific CD, SACD and DVD-A/V player, you'll also have a Blu-ray player and a high-end
USB DSD-ready DAC as well. I do like the Esoteric players, and while I'm sure the K-03 is
a worthy unit, it won't play Blu-rays or DVD-As, which will represent a fraction of
anyone's collection but are still high-rez discs. I own a DX-5 DSD, and it is probably the
last piece of my system I would change -- because I'll never find another one. -Marc
response to the Audio Systems Optimized "equipment review,"
I must say that if one hasnt made the sort of effort toward good music reproduction
described in Stirling Trayles process, one must have been sleeping the last few
should be canon that the foundation of good power distribution, adequate grounding,
resonance control and rational signal cabling are required should one expect a good
would really like to join your reader list.
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