|Hello everyone! I'd appreciate your guidance. I also sent an email to Adam at Zu to get his feedback.|
I'm trying to match a stereo amp or pair of monoblocks (or dual mono amp) for my Zu Pro speakers passive woofer arrays. The front arrays are driven by a Yamamoto A-08S.
My other gear:
Canary CA-903 Line Stage Preamp
Ayre CX-7e CDP
Roksan Radius 5 TT w/Zyx Airy S cart.
Canary CA-400 Phono stage preamp
My budget for the subwoofer amp is around $500-$1000, though I could stretch that a bit if an amazing deal surfaced. After spending a few days reading through MANY, MANY, MANY posts and on-line reviews, here are the options I'm considering:
Classe CA-100 or DR-9
Carver Silver 7t monoblocks (a SS copy of the Silver 7 tube monoblocks)
Belles 150A Hot Rod Version or 350A
Krell KAV250a or KST-100
Bryston 2B-SST or Bryston 4b Pro
Musical Fidelity Supercharger 550K - ok, this is out of my price range, but do I need this much power to control the woofer array?
One other consideration is I'd prefer, though not a requirement, that the amp accept XLR connections b/c I must pass the signal from my preamp through the Rane PEQ55 to the subwoofer amp. This will allow me to filter the signal below 40-65hz and below for the subwoofer array (the subwoofer drivers go down to 16hz and up to 1khz). The Rane PEQ55 has XLR connectors only and RCA/XLR cables are harder to come by on the used market (I prefer not to use cheater plugs), so an amp with XLR connectors would be a better option for me. Of course I can get around this with an XLR to RCA cable, but I'd prefer XLR to XLR.
PS I found a post on Agon about the Pro woofer arrays that was kind of helpful:
While the rear arrays of the Pro's seems easy, with their high efficiency, my experience has been anything but.
First, I had a Bel Canto e.one 300, which should have plenty of output. It didn't. Sean at Zu told me to try a conventional Class A/B amp. I found an Adcom 555II, which has 200 wpc and should have been a champ. It wasn't.
I then tried an inexpensive NAD amp which fared no better. All these amps had the same problem of insufficient output and insufficient definition.
Then, I tried the amp circuit of a 60 wpc Audiolab amp - here we go, much better! Then, I went to the local stereo shop and traded the Adcom for an old Hafler 220 DH, with about 110 wpc. I'm sure it gets better, but this amp at $210 is the best I've had.
I'd call Sean and get his votes. Zu has certainly heard more Pro setups than anybody and can surely direct you well. Don't accept anything less than superlative bass. And, don't be afraid to cross over higher than 40 hz. Try 65 hz, which feels to me to blend very well with the fronts and provide some excellent midbass pop which is not possible with the front array.
INSERT FROM ME: The poster ultimately went with a Crown K2 amp which he swears by, though I'm not leaning toward the Crown amp because of the other options I listed above.