Mikeyn

Advice Needed

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Hi everyone,

I recently became the owner of a set of KEF 205.2's. I have been running Arcam alpha 8 integrated (Running front treble) Alpha 8 power amp (running Base), old Yamaha for 6 channel av.(Running surround and sub woofer)

I have bought a new ex demo Arcam A49 which will soon arrive.

What is the best thing to do? Is it to run the front speakers of the A49 and get rid of the Alpha's?

Or should i utilise either of the old amps in any way?

I ask because I will have to wait before I can invest in a C49 & P49

Mikeyn

I am a novice

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I used to own the 205/2s and have heard the A49 many times....mostly with the New Refs....but also with the 203/2s. It's a really good amp, with a Class A "feel" to the sound.

My advise would be to use the A49 to run the front speakers......and suspect that you will not feel the need to upgrade to the C49/P49.

One thing to bear in mind, with components of this level of transparency......is the quality of your Source.

What Source are you currently using?

I have always found a Linn DS works very well, with A49 and Kef Ref.

BTW. Welcome to the mayhem. 

Edited by CnoEvil

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I think @CnoEvil has summed it up pretty well. Although the KEF’s impedance does drop fairly low, on paper the A49 should have plenty of grunt for them. 

@TheFlash is the forums resident Arcam fanboy, hopefully he’ll see this thread (he has the A49) and give some input.

As a former owner of several items from the Arcam Alpha series, I do find it funny that most end up Bi-amping, although in my experience it made absolutely no difference.

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Super Wammer
30 minutes ago, Blackmetalboon said:

I think @CnoEvil has summed it up pretty well. Although the KEF’s impedance does drop fairly low, on paper the A49 should have plenty of grunt for them. 

@TheFlash is the forums resident Arcam fanboy, hopefully he’ll see this thread (he has the A49) and give some input.

As a former owner of several items from the Arcam Alpha series, I do find it funny that most end up Bi-amping, although in my experience it made absolutely no difference.

You rang, sir?

1 hour ago, Mikeyn said:

Hi everyone,

I recently became the owner of a set of KEF 205.2's. I have been running Arcam alpha 8 integrated (Running front treble) Alpha 8 power amp (running Base), old Yamaha for 6 channel av.(Running surround and sub woofer)

I have bought a new ex demo Arcam A49 which will soon arrive.

What is the best thing to do? Is it to run the front speakers of the A49 and get rid of the Alpha's?

Or should i utilise either of the old amps in any way?

I ask because I will have to wait before I can invest in a C49 & P49

Mikeyn

I am a novice

I'm not sure I entirely inderstand your stereo/surround setup but let me take a stab focused on stereo listening only (you may wish/need to keep the Yamaha for surround):

  • My A49 replaced bi-amped A38/P38 which replaced A85/P85. Just dangling my 20+ years Arcam and bi-amping credentials out there.
  • My A49 trounced the A38/P38 bi-amp combo. The A49 is a big boy with huge reseves of clean power and with no need of a support act
  • Sell the alphas. The A49 would embarrass them if they were part of same setup
  • Forget the C49 and P49. The A49 does it all, nothing to be gained by bi-amping with a P49 or by buying two boxes to do the same job. The only reason you might want to change from A49 to P49 is if you wanted to use a different pre from the C49.
  • Sell your redundant pair of cables. Add it to the money you get from selling the Alphas and thought you might have to save towards a C49 and/or P49. Treat your wife!

I think that's clear enough... I may have disagreed with Cnoevil here through misunderstanding your surround sound set up and the role the A49/KEF's may play in this.

Merry Christmas!

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17 minutes ago, TheFlash said:

I think that's clear enough... I may have disagreed with Cnoevil here through misunderstanding your surround sound set up and the role the A49/KEF's may play in this.

I was assuming Pre-Outs into A49......and Refs covering 2 Channel and Fr+FL for AV.

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1 hour ago, CnoEvil said:

I used to own the 205/2s and have heard the A49 many times....mostly with the New Refs....but also with the 203/2s. It's a really good amp, with a Class A "feel" to the sound.

My advise would be to use the A49 to run the front speakers......and suspect that you will not feel the need to upgrade to the C49/P49.

One thing to bear in mind, with components of this level of transparency......is the quality of your Source.

What Source are you currently using?

I have always found a Linn DS works very well, with A49 and Kef Ref.

BTW. Welcome to the mayhem. 

Hi

Arcam alpha 7 cd, & Radio, Rega 10 Phono

Yam for the AV

Mikeyn

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Super Wammer
10 hours ago, TheFlash said:

You rang, sir?

I'm not sure I entirely inderstand your stereo/surround setup but let me take a stab focused on stereo listening only (you may wish/need to keep the Yamaha for surround):

  • My A49 replaced bi-amped A38/P38 which replaced A85/P85. Just dangling my 20+ years Arcam and bi-amping credentials out there.
  • My A49 trounced the A38/P38 bi-amp combo. The A49 is a big boy with huge reseves of clean power and with no need of a support act
  • Sell the alphas. The A49 would embarrass them if they were part of same setup
  • Forget the C49 and P49. The A49 does it all, nothing to be gained by bi-amping with a P49 or by buying two boxes to do the same job. The only reason you might want to change from A49 to P49 is if you wanted to use a different pre from the C49.
  • Sell your redundant pair of cables. Add it to the money you get from selling the Alphas and thought you might have to save towards a C49 and/or P49. Treat your wife!

I think that's clear enough... I may have disagreed with Cnoevil here through misunderstanding your surround sound set up and the role the A49/KEF's may play in this.

Merry Christmas!

Bumping this because it’s full of brilliant advice... 🤔

  • Haha 1

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10 hours ago, Mikeyn said:

Hi

Arcam alpha 7 cd, & Radio, Rega 10 Phono

Yam for the AV

Mikeyn

FWIW. My advice would be to upgrade the Source when funds allow.

The 205/2s are a Reference speaker...but can sound a bit lean, forward and edgy with the wrong ancillaries - and will show up weaknesses in the chain. They work very well with amps that aren't too forward....so Arcam is a good choice.

As The Flash says, the A49 has plenty of guts and is easily up to the job. I recommend the Linn DS (Majik or Akurate), as they have an "analogue like" quality to the sound. 

Edited by CnoEvil
  • Like 1

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Super Wammer

An Arcam fanboy would keep his eye out for a CD23T... they’re coming up for sale less and less often and are getting on a bit but I have two and they’re still fabulous. In fact I’d got so used to the sound that when I heard a Marantz CD6006 (well-reviewed) in same system I was shocked by the difference.

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Personally speaking I would run the speakers single wire (not a fan of bi-amping or bi-wiring) straight from the A49.

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Super Wammer
1 hour ago, plasticpenguin said:

Personally speaking I would run the speakers single wire (not a fan of bi-amping or bi-wiring) straight from the A49.

Absolutely ^this. 

Alpha 8 integrated + power = 50w+50w per side  = 100w per side. A49 = 200w per side and they’re lovely watts!

Edited by TheFlash

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15 hours ago, TheFlash said:

You rang, sir?

I'm not sure I entirely inderstand your stereo/surround setup but let me take a stab focused on stereo listening only (you may wish/need to keep the Yamaha for surround):

  • My A49 replaced bi-amped A38/P38 which replaced A85/P85. Just dangling my 20+ years Arcam and bi-amping credentials out there.
  • My A49 trounced the A38/P38 bi-amp combo. The A49 is a big boy with huge reseves of clean power and with no need of a support act
  • Sell the alphas. The A49 would embarrass them if they were part of same setup
  • Forget the C49 and P49. The A49 does it all, nothing to be gained by bi-amping with a P49 or by buying two boxes to do the same job. The only reason you might want to change from A49 to P49 is if you wanted to use a different pre from the C49.
  • Sell your redundant pair of cables. Add it to the money you get from selling the Alphas and thought you might have to save towards a C49 and/or P49. Treat your wife!

I think that's clear enough... I may have disagreed with Cnoevil here through misunderstanding your surround sound set up and the role the A49/KEF's may play in this.

Merry Christmas!

Hi

Great thanks for the help. So in regards to the source, do you agree that a linn is the way to go?

I would like to play music that i download?

Also My av set up is an antique, I am running a ket sub, and two Kef Q1 book shelves as my rears. But the Yam processor has no bluetooth or Internet connectivity and I suspect the sound it delivers is well out of fate too.

Whats the best way to go forward re source and AV processing?

Mikeyn 

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Super Wammer
45 minutes ago, Mikeyn said:

Hi

Great thanks for the help. So in regards to the source, do you agree that a linn is the way to go?

I would like to play music that i download?

Also My av set up is an antique, I am running a ket sub, and two Kef Q1 book shelves as my rears. But the Yam processor has no bluetooth or Internet connectivity and I suspect the sound it delivers is well out of fate too.

Whats the best way to go forward re source and AV processing?

Mikeyn 

I can’t  comment on Linn, sorry, will need to leave that to others. I have a Bluesound Node2 which does a fabulous job of feeding music from my computer (NAS, actually) or from Spotify into my A49; I bought it after discussions and recommendations on the Wam and have not been disappointed. It’s just a Streamer and DAC in one box with a great control app you can run on a tablet/iPad, and you can hardwire it to computer so don’t need to send music signal over WiFi (ok) or worse Bluetooth.

Worth doing a search on the forum if you want to see further discussion of the Bluesound, the alternative Auralic Aries etc. 

Enjoy the A49!

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19 minutes ago, TheFlash said:

I can’t  comment on Linn, sorry, will need to leave that to others. I have a Bluesound Node2 which does a fabulous job of feeding music from my computer (NAS, actually) or from Spotify into my A49; I bought it after discussions and recommendations on the Wam and have not been disappointed. It’s just a Streamer and DAC in one box with a great control app you can run on a tablet/iPad, and you can hardwire it to computer so don’t need to send music signal over WiFi (ok) or worse Bluetooth.

Worth doing a search on the forum if you want to see further discussion of the Bluesound, the alternative Auralic Aries etc. 

Enjoy the A49!

Thanks ever so much. Have a great break!

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Super Wammer
44 minutes ago, Mikeyn said:

Thanks ever so much. Have a great break!

And you!

Dont forget to update at least your personal profile so folk know where you are in the country/world: Wammers have a habit of helping each other out and if folk know your eyes just around the corner then opportunities to hear kit etc can open themselves up.

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