Need a 2 or 3 channel amp for around $1k - whatcha got?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Dinglehead, Feb 10, 2019 at 4:15 PM.

  1. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    so right now I’m trying to keep my spending under 1200 or so.

    I’ve been looking at the Emotiva XPS 2/3, the Emotiva A300, the Monoprice Monolith 3x200, or the Marantz MM7025.

    I’m going to be driving a pair of Polk LSiM 705s and a Polk LSiM center Channel. It doesn’t HAVE to be 3 channels but I figure I might as well.

    What’s my best option? Is there anything I’m missing here?
     
  2. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Gah! Comparing these is driving me nuts. Do I really need more than 200 watts? Would the 150 in the a300 be plenty?
     
  3. rockclassics

    rockclassics Forum Resident

    Location:
    Arkansas, USA
    Depends on the size of your room and the desired volume level.

    What kind of music do you listen to?
     
  4. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    I listen to mainly funk, jazz, rock, etc. Its a pretty big room (the main living area in our house), and I like to get loud sometimes, but usually run things at between -10 and -20.

    I'm also checking out the Parasound 2125 - which looks like a pretty great little 150w amp.
     
  5. zeppage2

    zeppage2 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oakland, CA
    Don't skimp on power, you will regret it and invariably spend more money buying the higher end piece after already buying the lesser piece.
     
  6. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Shouldn't 150x2 be plenty to drive 88db sensitivity speakers? Am I going to see that much difference in the 150 watts the Parasound delivers and the 200 the Monoprice (ATI) puts out?
     
  7. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Also.. I'm looking at starting with the Parasound 2125 (150x2) - and if that's not enough power just adding a second 2125 and using them in bridged mode for each speaker.

    BUT then of course Im right at the price of the 3-channel Monolith 200w amp.
     
  8. chili555

    chili555 Forum Resident

    How are you going to drive three speakers with fewer than three channels?
     
  9. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    The AVR is going to pick up any slack. My main concern is putting the front two speakers on their own amp - the center channel would just be a bonus.
     
  10. chili555

    chili555 Forum Resident

    If I understand correctly, the AVR is going to drive the center and, if any, surrounds and you want a better amp for the front left and rights. Correct?

    My vote is the Parasound 2125.
     
  11. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    Monoprice often has 20% off sales during holidays. That would be a decent discount on a 200x2 or a 200x3.
     
  12. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Man. I noticed that last month they did 20% off using amazon pay or something. Ugh.
     
  13. Apesbrain

    Apesbrain Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Coast, USA
    Note there's a "v2" version of this amp out now. The Parasound Halo A23+ is very sweet if a little over OP's budget.
     
  14. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Thats correct! I think the 2125 is where I'm leaning as well right now. Less money, expandable, and people seem to like the way they sound.
     
  15. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    So I guess my ultimate question is....

    With these speakers that handle up to 250 watts and 88db sensitivity.... is 150 enough, or should I be looking at 200+?
     
  16. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    In the scheme of things, there's very little difference between an 150 and a 200 watt amp. If your 88dB speakers aren't loud enough with 150 watts, you'd have to double that, to 300 watts, to gain a modest 3dB in output.

    Maybe consider this: what type of sound do you like? Warm, soft and musical, or more extended in the treble, with a more accurate balance? From descriptions I've read, the Monoprice amps are warmer in tone, with a softer treble balance, while Parasound amps are cleaner, with perhaps more detail. Which would better suit you and your Polks?
     
    beowulf likes this.
  17. Dinglehead

    Dinglehead Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Florida
    Thats true - at the listening levels I usually use I can't imagine the 150 watts wouldn't be enough.... but I just wonder if all the extra headroom would be of much benefit.
     
  18. StimpyWan

    StimpyWan Forum Resident

    I kind'a worried about amp power. But I don't listen at extended high power levels at all. So, I feel it's a moot point.

    Now, years ago, I bough a NAD 3140 integrated amp. Cool little amp too. LED power meters on the front, which were fun to watch. I set it up as an early video system, with a RCA CED player(!), and Radio Shack Minimus 7 speakers. The first movie I watched was The Empire Strikes Back. I still remember the Walker scene on Hoth. The NAD was showing average levels of about 2 watts. Then the Walker came into view. One of the Walker foot falls peaked at 40 watts, when it stomped down! That surprised me. I didn't think I had the volume loud, but transient peaks can bring some power draw.
     
  19. james

    james Forum Resident

    Location:
    Annapolis
  20. pdxway

    pdxway Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    You should check audiogon, Craigslist, eBay, etc. for some nice used choices. I got 2 of my used Parasound A23 from Craigslist and ebay for a total of about ~$1200. My other A23 with warranty was a demo from a dealer with a discount.

    There is a 5 channels a52 in audiogon (retailed for ~$2800) asking for $1200. You can still offer a lower price and see if you can get it even cheaper. Parasound A-52 | Multi-Channel Amps | Edgewater, Colorado 80214 | Audiogon. The only issue I have with this seller is he has no ratings.

    BTW, I am happy with my three A23 driving my mains and surround speakers. In 4.1, with my preamp, it is the best I have heard in my home. Do note that you should at least try some decent interconnect cables like those from Blue Jeans. Don't try to go too cheap with interconnect. There is a difference between the very cheap ones and decent one, at least in my system.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019 at 3:15 PM

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