doug2507

LS3/5A pairing with Sugden?

47 posts in this topic

I used to own Stirling Broadcast LS3/5a V2 speakers. They were fine with an old Quad 306 in a room slightly smaller than the OP, but then I don't play loud.

I have to say, it took me a while to adjust to the sound of the LS3/5a after living with small ProAcs for 5 years, but eventually I got it. But when I moved to Harbeth P3ESR they were comprehensively beaten. Now, I really can't understand the fascination with them in the face of the clearly superior Harbeth P3ESR.

Ken Kessler even said that they won't put them back into production because it would be to admit that Harbeth can't better a design from the 70s. I find that a bizarre way of looking at things, when I demoed the P3ESR they were just better across the board.

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I totally understand it though most people who like that sound signature would actually prefer Spendor BC1. Better balanced and far easier to set up. A lovely treble which is something the LS3/5a lacks.

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I totally understand it though most people who like that sound signature would actually prefer Spendor BC1. Better balanced and far easier to set up. A lovely treble which is something the LS3/5a lacks.

Or even B&W DM4, which you can pick up for less than a £100 and which people compare favourably to the BC1.

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I have a pair of ls3/5a's and must admit I have never managed to make them deliver anything above the norm,and they sit boxed in the back room.

But I have heard them do fantastic 3d soundstaging and musical involvement in the right system ,that was spacedeck spacearm,lyra,Croft pre.Art audio el34's.

Also seem to hit the mark with Quad11's but boy is that synergy thing really important. Have you tried the LS3/5a Club site.

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The best I have heard them with are in two systems;

1st - Denon top of the range DVD player into a Arcam 8, sounded really good perched ontop of some B&Ws, not sure why as the Arcam stuff is a bit meh.

2nd - Marantz CD11 into a Audio Innovations S500 on a shelf in a bare room (you know all white with minimal furniture and wood floor).

I have some Spendor ones and I struggle to get them to sound good. The best so far has been the Art Audio EL34 integrated from the Transrotor Fat Bob/Koetsu Rosewood. I have found big heavy stands to be the best with a dab of blutac.

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With speakers like the Spendor S3/5R out there I would be very reluctant to go for an 'original' LS3/5A.

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I've got a pair of Stirling V2s. Find they sound good with 30+ watts a side up 'em. Best sound so far from NVA Ap30. Probably better up the range too. Saying that an Ap10 at about 15watts a side gives them a good run as well. Worked well also with Quad 303 and 405. And a Creek 4040 gives them a good kick too, not refined but bashes the tunes out in an appealing way.

Haven't tried the originals with KEF drivers, had heard these don't go as loud. Tempted to try Harbeth p3ESR at some point, but these are a good deal more expensive.

Always something better out there; just a question of knowing when to jump off the ladder!

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Thanks HHM. I guess its down to how 'authentic' you want to be. ie purists will want an original with original say Quad 303 amplification. I toyed with getting an original, but thought a new one more sensible at the time.

I tried the Quad 303 for a while. Got so used to it that was almost dismayed when I heard more from my classical records with the NVA amp! Is more revealing better? Million dollar question. I was quite happy with the Quad. Then I heard the Nva. I actually like both presentations. Technically the nva wins, but enjoy both and like the rugged build quality of the old unit. So maybe, just maybe, I should get hold of an old Ls3/5a just to see how good it really was in 1974 ;)

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Hi. I use LS3/5a speakers, Rogers and Audiomaster 15 Ohm types. What you have to remember is the the overall high impedance means that these speakers need voltage, not current, to get the best from them. The Quad 11 monoblocs, both old and new Classic re-issue versions, are ideal matches. The old Quad ll's were designed for 16 Ohm loads, like Quads own electrostatic 57 model, and the 15 watts output is enough to drive the high impedance of the 3/5a to highish levels. If you opt for transistor amps then let us say it has an output of 50 watts into 8 Ohms, as the 3/5a has almost double the load the amp will be making 25watts into this impedance. So if you are using solid state make sure the amp is at least 50 watts per ch into 8 Ohms for optimum results. The Sugden is 25 watts Class A and theoretically into the 3/5a will produce just over 12 watts, being Class A also means the power supply will quickly run out at high volume due to the continuous running that Class A imposes on the power supply circuit. It just means that you will not be able to play very loud - but that, of course, depends on what is classed as loud. Hope this helps.

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