Amp for P3ESR (sub €2000)

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Christophe999s, Aug 10, 2018.

  1. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    Lately I've been looking to replace my current amplifier for my P3ESR's. I'm not unhappy with it, but it's time to try something else.
    I'm quite sensitive to listening fatigue, so preferably something smooth. The amp needs to have HT bypass, so that I can hook it up to my surround receiver.
    I prefer an amp without a phono input, since I have a good preamp. Onboard DAC is a plus, but not a dealbreaker. Budget is between €1500 to €2000.
    SS, class D, tube amp, ... I'm open to all suggestions.
    Currently I'm looking at
    - Hegel H90 (or maybe second hand Rost)
    - Exposure 2010S2D (or secondhand 3010S2D)
    - Line Magnetic LM34ia
    - Yamaha AS1100
    - Peachtree Nova150
    Anyone who has experience with these amps, or other suggestions ?
     
  2. Ulises

    Ulises Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    After a long search and trying several amps, I ended up with the Belles Aria. I believe it does home theatre bypass. No dac. Does have a mm phono stage. Great power. Very smooth. Dead silent. No fatigue. I got overly excited and wrote a gushing review here that has my listening impressions.
     
    ls35a likes this.
  3. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    I did come across the Belles during my search (and your review :) ), but I can't seem to find any dealers in Europe, or second hand offers. I did find a pricelist from the UK, but new it was £2300, and that's above budget.
     
    Ulises likes this.
  4. Hifi Kenny

    Hifi Kenny Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    The Nait 5si could be an ideal match and is within the OP's budget - NAIT 5SI .

    It's very popular with P3ESR owners, is class AB (60 watts into 8 ohms) and has the AV bypass.
     
    bhazen likes this.
  5. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    The P3s really come alive dynamically when you give them lots of smooth power- and they can take it. I heard them most recently being driven by a set of Vinnie Rossi signature mono blocks, which are out of your budget but point being the P3s can thrive surprisingly so with robust amplification that would otherwise seem above their capability.
    The Yamaha AS1100 fits the bill with 190 watts / channel @ 4-ohms in the tradition of smooth sounding MOSFETs and large transformer based power supplies.
    Easily the best one on your list in terms of sound quality and getting the most out of the speakers you have.
    My other recommendation would be the Parasound integrated but you may not have access to that amp in your country.
     
    NOS300B, Christophe999s and Agitater like this.
  6. Agitater

    Agitater Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    I've used the Yamaha A-S2100, A-S1100, Audio Analogue Maestro, Naim Supernait 2, LFD NCSE MKII, Hegel H90 and H160, and the Peachtree nova300 integrated amps with the Harbeth P3ESR and several competitors (Audio Space AS3/5A, Graham, and the Falcon Acoustics LS3/5A. My favorites integrateds by far are the Naim Supernait 2, the Yamaha A-S2100 and A-S1100 and the Hegel H160. Superb control, naturally accurate voices and acoustic instrument timbres, soaring electronica (e.g., Yello) and a lot of glorious music. All of the LS3/5A magic pops out, grabs you, and hangs on. Wonderful music listening.
     
  7. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    I have looked it it, but at €3200, it's above budget. And if one shows up on second hand websites, it goes for around €2500 :(

    I've heard the AS1100 paired with a pair of Kef's and was quite impressed with it. And, not to forget, VU meters! Everything is better with VU meters :D
     
  8. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    If you shop around in Belgium or NL you should be able to find the A-S1100 for around €1500. That makes it an incredible value IMO.

    Out of all amps I have ever heard, the Yamaha is easily the most musical one. Very subjective, I know. Like any amp, it does have a sound of its own, so make sure you really love its signature before you commit. E.g. if you strongly value rhythm/fast transients, something like Naim could be more to your liking. The Yamaha excels in timbre, resolution, liquid midrange, and deep bass.
     
    ThorensSme and Helom like this.
  9. Ulises

    Ulises Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    I couldn't agree with this more. I honestly find it baffling that Harbeth suggests "50 watts Programme" for such insensitive speakers. If you look at negative reviews like this one you find a consistent theme of underpowered amps and the (in my opinion) inaccurate belief that the speaker is only good for vocal/ jazz etc. But once you get closer to 100 watts, the speaker comes alive and sounds amazing across genres, even those (like hip-hop and electronic music) so many report the speaker doesn't handle well.
     
  10. basie-fan

    basie-fan Forum Resident

    What about the AS801? Looks similar to the AS1100 but without the VU meters and wood side panels. Half the price and well reviewed.

    Has anyone directly compared these?
     
    G B Kuipers likes this.
  11. Agitater

    Agitater Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    Yes. The A-S801 is very good, but in my opinion the A-S1100 is where Yamaha’s true high-end begins. Power, bass weight and accuracy, tremendous instantaneous current delivery, better specifications and tighter tolerances across the board, and an even more musically satisfying experience driving almost any speakers you can think of.
     
    basie-fan and G B Kuipers like this.
  12. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
    Pioneer SX 1250.....kidding:)
     
    Christophe999s likes this.
  13. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    I haven't, but the A-S1100 has a euphonic thing going on which I don't expect the A-S801 to have. I know some forum members have had both, @Helom if I am correct..?
     
  14. Helom

    Helom Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.S.
    These two use a different transistor types. The 1100 sounds somewhat similar to a tube amp. The 801 will have a more traditional SS sound - leaning more toward the clinical.

    Both will produce very true-to-life string and piano tones - sort of a Yamaha theme IME.
     
    basie-fan likes this.
  15. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    I've been looking on several sites, but the cheapest I found it was €1650: Yamaha A-S1100 Silver flancs noir laqué - Amplis hi-fi stéréo
    And it seems that most stores don't have these is stock. Could it be that it will soon be replaced with a newer version? It's been on the market since 2015.

    Unfortunately, the AS801 is missing the bypass that I need for my surround receiver.
     
  16. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    I think you're right; can't find it any cheaper myself. Still a great price for an amp of this quality.
     
  17. Radiotron

    Radiotron Tube Designer

    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    I remember loving the P3ESR driven by PrimaLuna (KT88).
     
  18. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    Unfortunately, these cost €2400 with the standard EL34s, and they rarely show up on second hand sites.
    I have read great things about them, and would love to hear it paired with the Harbeths.

    I've always wondered if these valve amps have enough headroom to drive inefficient speakers like the P3ESR's.
     
  19. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    I have owned the PL DiaLogue Two and believe me, while it's a good and surprisingly powerful sounding amp (with amazing build quality), it does not really compete with the Yamaha in terms of timbral resolution, power, refinement and musicality. IMO. Tube rolling was a lot of fun, though.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
  20. Helom

    Helom Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.S.
    That says a lot regarding the Yammie's sound palette. Most don't believe me when I claim these amps can go toe-to-toe with some tube units.
     
    G B Kuipers likes this.
  21. Christophe999s

    Christophe999s Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Belgium
    I found a dealer who has a demonstration model for sale. I've emailed them for the price and I'm waiting for their answer. :)

    I'm surprised there aren't (m)any recommendations for the Hegel Röst and the Peachtree. I haven't heard them myself, but from what I've read they are supposed to be really good.
     
  22. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    Congrats!

    Personal opinion but Hegels have a distinct sound that is polarizing- an over abundance of bass with a somewhat compressed clarity and sound stage that many people like but requires careful system matching. Powerful but not open or natural.
    Peachtree are class D ICE power amps with high quality DACs and are high convenience, small footprint.
     
  23. theron d

    theron d Forum Resident

    Location:
    Baltimore MD
    see if you can find a used Luxman 505u ...thought it matched beautifully with my Harbeths (the speakers were 7es3)....
     
  24. james

    james Forum Resident

    Location:
    Annapolis
    I had a A-S2000 and currently have an A-S801. The A-Sxxx amps are great amps and I'd possibly have another if they had onboard DAC's. I purchased the A-S801 because I needed a one box solution. I can't say anything bad about the A-S801 but it's also not one of those pieces of gear that I feel "I need to hang onto this one".
     
  25. Hifi Kenny

    Hifi Kenny Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    It's amazing how many recommendations ignore the OP's budget and need for the HT bypass.
     

Share This Page