Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by pdxway, May 31, 2019.
what will you be using as a preamp for the a21?
Parasound P 7 !!! I've had that since late 2014, driving my Paramount 300B amps. I had had a McIntosh C220 preamp, wasn't using my stereo much for a year or more (too busy! I know, it's a sacrilege!), needed cash for daughter's wedding, so sold it. A few years later got to where I could replace so got the P 7. It sounds as good or better to my ears and has all the bells and whistles I now desire (including remote fine BALANCE control which I experienced for the first time with the C220). Definitely going to run balanced connections, altho I will likely try it initially with my current Synergistic Research Looking Glass Phase II unbalanced ICs I have in there now with the 300B amps. Going to place the A 21 on the bottom shelf of rack, where the 300B amps currently reside. They will be moved to either side lower shelf on my TV rack stand thing, so will need longer unbalanced ICs from the P 7 outputs to them.
I intend on running dual systems at least for a while, choosing the 300B / Triangle Tituses or the A 21 / Silver 8s ... should be interesting! The Tituses are on stands in the nearfield so would move them back out of the way when listening to the A 21 / S8s.
Very interesting, this will be the first time in decades I haven't had a tube in the system ...! So if there's some aspect if things I want to tweak, I guess ICs and speaker cables will have to suffice. I already am thinking about getting another pair of AP Oval 9 speaker cables (IF I decide to keep both systems). May end up passing the 300B / Titus system along and using the Oval 9s with the A 21 / S8s. We'll see!
There it is then! I was just typing a response saying could use Marantz as pre for a while, and consider P5 or P6. But you're all set!
The P7 is definitely one that works well with both HT and 2-channel, and the analog section is an upgrade over the P5 / P6.
P 7 -> A 21 Interconnects? Thinking balanced for sure, I just ordered some $315/1m pair (CableCo) Analysis Plus Micro Oval-In (Copper), 1m with XLRs ... were the 'cheapest' balanced regular ICs that AP makes. Plan on trying generic but decent speaker cables (I have some Sewell 'Silverback' OFC 12 ga. cables from the surround system) then the mighty AP Oval 9s ... which I suspect will stay in there! Ah, Bottlehead 300Bs and Triangle Tituses, you may be in for a new owner!
Almost went for the Solo Crystal Oval ICs ... but an extra $235 ... then there's the Silver Apex at $995/m pair ... but thinking those might be a little 'bright' in this system? Maybe someday ...
Liked my new A21+ so much that I added another addition to my Parasound family. The Z3 amp. I was trying to build a decent system for the bedroom on the 'cheap' and with a small form factor. I'm going to use a Raspberry Pi as a streamer into a iFi dac. Hopefully it will sound decent when all is said and done. Shouldn't take up too much space.
Listening to the new silver monolith now (a21+).
The thing is beautiful, clean understated elegant design. Build quality is excellent.
So far the sound is very nice, smooth and appealing. Unfortunately the headline for now reads "Reluctant".
Two hours or so on the clock and the sound belies both the massive size and power spec. Dynamics are somewhat hesitant. I hope this changes.
I was reminded today how heavy those Parasound amps are. Now I have the excuse the amp broke my back have to lay on the couch and listen.
I wasn't sold on mine at first..still wonder if I could have spent less money and accomplished a better sound than what I previously had. I think the $$$ aspect made me expect the thing to serve me dinner too. I gave up on listening to every nuance and just started playing music and I'm a whole lot happier now.
You know the deal........Time. My Hint took probably 150-200 hours before the amp section began to blossom.
Like Catcher10 said, I bet after 50 hours or more things will open up ... I just enjoyed reading all the accolades at Parasound A21 Amplifiers user reviews : 5 out of 5 - 21 reviews - audioreview.com ... so am drooling with anticipation! BUT my trip had to be postponed, so will have to wait a few more weeks to hear my new to me A 21 that's on the way to our new house ...
Tony, all those HUGE Capacitors in the design most definitely take several hours to run in. I know there are many who do not believe in 'Burn In' but in this case, it is most certainly real.
A purchased a used Dealer Demo JC5 and the Dealer commented that the Amp hadn't completely broken in yet. And he was right, I'm guessing I've logged around 100-150 hours so far, and it has become much smoother and spacious then when I received it.
I think your patience will be rewarded
Your caps (JC5) are bigger than my caps (A21+).
Not by much
I know it's only been 24 hours since your initial update.... any updates or new observations?
I am one who thinks that 90% of SS break in happens in the first 10 hours (except for Teflon caps) --- curious if you got any more time with it?
I use VanDenHul “The Name” XLR and love the sound. Very refined and still detailed, quite reasonable too.
The amp was sounding excellent last night (5 total hours of on time) and killed any thoughts of returning it for now.
I will be working at home all next week and playing it constantly. I am now optimistic that it will inherit the crown.
What are you using for a preamp? The A21+ or JC5 is on my radar. Hope you follow up with your opinion as time progresses.
Will do. Yesterday I was thinking about which amps to buy when I return the a21+. Last night was a break through and I am calling it a keeper. We'll see how it works out as I do more listening.
The preamp I use is shown below- a Rogue Audio RH5 tube linestage and headphone amp. An excellent sounding preamp balanced design, currently using the 12db gain setting and Amperex NOS tubes.
I am prepared if the a21+ starts talking to me in a robot voice.
Fwiw...i think you're doing it right.Tube preamp,SS power amp....character and power...relax and enjoy your music bud
FWIW the gain on the a21+ are full maximum.
This should suppress the noise floor of your system maximally.
Thanks! I checked your profile and wasn't sure if you were still using the Rogue. I bet your system is sounding great!
That's great news avanti........ there's a good testimonial to initial break in!
We put a lot into these decisions, nothing better than when then work out........ congrats!
I have been using the Parasound JC5 since it first came out. I have been a firm believer in McIntosh preamps for many years. At present I have the C2600 tube preamp and it works well with the JC5. I do like the idea of using a SS amp with a tube preamp.
good advice as ever....
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