New Amp advice please

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi and General Audio' started by ne5, Feb 22, 2020.

  1. ne5

    ne5

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    Hi, I have an old Rotel RA-930BX amplifer, I've had it over 20 years, and it is finally maybe on the blink. What is happening, is the power ie volume drops (just in one speaker it seems) and audibly affects the effect the bass has on the tone. The treble is fine but when the power drops it sounds hollow and tingy.


    I love this amp combination with KEF Q300 speakers, and even though I don't have a remote (but I use a squeezebox which does so its not really a problem) can anybody suggest a good amp to go with these speakers ?


    I know they are good speakers and there are lots of amps out there, price is not really an objection up to a grand I would rather pay 700 quid outright than pay 300-400 or whatever only to not be happy and have to start again.


    I like a nice treble and firm backing but absolutely NOT boomy or over powering bass or thump.
     
    ne5, Feb 22, 2020
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  2. ne5

    Dissily Mordentroge

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    Introduced in Japan about 1990 and, if memory serves about 30 watts it should be easy to replace. If you’re willing to go second hand there are always a number of Rotel amps of more recent vintage on eBay.
    If you prefer new I’d start looking at the Rotel A 10, their nearest equivalent today to your old amp.
     
    Dissily Mordentroge, Feb 24, 2020
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  3. ne5

    ne5

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    ne5, Feb 24, 2020
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  4. ne5

    ne5

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    The prob as I'm sure you realise, is spending money then finding I don't like it as much as the current one, if its better, then fine, but when I bought the KEF's it took me 3 attempts to find the speakers I like. I've looked at other Rotels on ebay, and I suppose a "superior" rotel is worth a punt.
     
    ne5, Feb 24, 2020
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  5. ne5

    Dissily Mordentroge

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    Your problem is a common one today given audio retailers are nearly all unwilling to lend gear for you to try at home.
    The only alternative is to lug your speakers to their listening room but even then a lot of them won’t agree to provide that service unless you’re going to spend huge amounts.
    The other thing to consider is the sound of your old Rotel will have altered over years of use and my not be as it was when new so comparing what you’re now used to with a new amp is itself problematic.
    There’s no way you can be absolutely certain you’re going to like a new amp on your old speakers.
    All I can suggest is biting the bullet and putting your money down for the Rotel A 10. And remember, hardley anyone here is going to be able to accurately predict your reaction to any new amp on your old speakers.
    It’s a risky business. Sorry to be of so little help.
    I could prattle on about a valve amp giving your old speakers a warmer tone etc but how do I know if you’re going to like that? What may help those willing to take the risk of making a recommendation is telling us how big your room is, how much soft furnishing etc it contains, what kind of music you mostley listen to and at what volume.
     
    Dissily Mordentroge, Feb 24, 2020
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  6. ne5

    Dissily Mordentroge

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    To help others make recommendations they need to know if you’re determined to have tone controls.
    If not I’d be pointing you towards a used Pioneer A 400. If however you decide to go down that path make sure the volume control doesn’t make scratchy noises when turned. They are however easy to clean, you could even do it yourself.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
    Dissily Mordentroge, Feb 24, 2020
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  7. ne5

    ne5

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    I wouldn't buy anything without tone controls. This amp cost about 220 quid when I bought it, and the Rotel a-10 is 319 from Peter Tyson. As you say, its all hit and miss, but I bought the KEF speakers only a few years ago from Peter Tyson and there is a dealer near me. Would you say, based on price, 220 quid now 319 is comparable, I would have happily paid more than that so long as it is not inferior to my BX 930, although yes I realise I might have to try again and move it on. I'm very tempted to go for it tbh.
     
    ne5, Feb 26, 2020
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  8. ne5

    ne5

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    in fact, its reduced from 390 at Peter Tyson
     
    ne5, Feb 26, 2020
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  9. ne5

    Dissily Mordentroge

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    I’d go with the Rotel A 10 but remember, if new amps can take a significant time to burn in. I’d leave any decision about it for some time otherwise you could be throwing away a good amp. The price, if you take into account inflation is very fair.
    As you wouldn’t buy anything without tone controls that removes my other suggestion of a used Pioneer A 400.
    When you and if you instal the A 10 make sure you clean all the speaker and interconnect contacts etc.
     
    Dissily Mordentroge, Feb 26, 2020
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  10. ne5

    YorkshireRHT

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    Not actually heard this amplifier but its certainly receiving some praise, IOTA VXSA3 integrated, think it retails around £400, worth a look at and moreso a listen to. Seems theres a Power Amplifer add on for it too, all the best in your search.
    P.S Seems the tone controls are via the remote etc.
     
    YorkshireRHT, Feb 27, 2020
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  11. ne5

    Yellow

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    Definitely consider a new Rotel or even a NAD. Something like the C328 which will give you a similar sound but the added benefit of streaming, plus the amp contains a DAC, bluetooth, phono-in and headphone socket.
     
    Yellow, Mar 1, 2020
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