I am currently using a pair of Odyssey Stratos Monos. I have no means of knowing how to convince you that those reviews are accurate. In fact, I do not even want to try. If you have a friend who owns them (even the entry level Stratos stereo with or without cap upgrade) just go listen and see for yourself. Keep in mind that those ratings reflects several things. The most important for us consumers will be the performance/price ratio of the product. But it does not stop there. It should also reflect the customer's overall satisfaction (i.e. delivery, service, warranty, upgrade options etc.)
In short, the ratings point out to something. Logic tells you that, although it can be accomplish, it will be very difficult to brainwash 123(and counting) people to praise a specific product.
I hope this helps!
When I read reviews on audioreview I take the attitude that most people will be happy with what they recently purchased. Usually I skip right to the strengths/weaknesses section. If the reviewer lists no weaknesses then I don't read the review.
The Stratos may just be that good. Of the dozen amps I've gone through in home, ranging to $3K, it is the best one I've heard by a large margin. I could only compare it with the $6K Parasound JC-1 monoblocks for competition that clearly betters the Stratos in some areas, but the Stratos isn't as far off as one might think; it is an overall well balanced amp, it makes beautiful music and does not draw attention to itself in the least (once it has warmed up!). I recently bought very inefficient speakers and will be trying the SE Odyssey monoblocks eventually, but the 2ch Stratos has done suprisingly well thus far, curisoty or rather the upgrade bug has just gotten the better of me. As mentioned above, give them a try, they have a 30day home demo so you have nothing to loose.
Judit's advice is good and I will add that I look for what they compared it to and is there any mention of the other products in their review.
As a side note, not all of the reviews for the odyssey amps where in fact "5's," as some reviews have vanished, notably a couple recent ones questioning why some reviews have been deleted that where less then 5 stars! Conspiracy theories aside, still an amazing amp that must be heard to be believed.
How does the Stratos do when driving low impedance low efficiency loads ? Moncrieff has stated that this is indeed a very good amp and i "normally" trust him enough to believe what he says. However, how well the amp does into erratic loads may be another story. Anyone have experience with this ? Sean
Sean, I have been using the stratos monos to drive full range SoundLabs. I have been very happy with them. Pushing the stats barely even warms them up. For the price range I was unable to find anything in SS or tubes that I liked as well.
In addition to what Tthomas had already mentioned, I am using my Stratos on a pair of Martin Logans whose impedance was listed at 4 Ohms nominal to 1 Ohm at 20 khz. I was using a Threshold Stasis S500 Series II amps before, my speakers sounds no where near what I am hearing now. I am very happy with them (Odyssey amps) also.
I can answer that one. I have a pair of the Odyssey Stratos Monoblocks driving a pair of Infinity Kappa 9's. Their impedance dips down to .7 ohms in 2 places throughout the freq range. The monoblocks handle this load with ease. I've also hooked up my HT-3 (3ch Stratos) and it has no problem driving this load. The sound is not as refined as the monoblocks but it still sounds damn good.
Okay, okay, i get the idea. I don't need to see 120 more "reviews" like those that i just read to believe you : )
Thanks for chiming in folks. I guess we just saw first hand testimony as to the customer satisfaction that these amps bring along with them. The fact that you folks all mentioned tough to drive speakers and some very well known amps to compare them to helps out quite a bit too. I had thought about buying a Stratos but never got around to it. Guess i probably should at least check into them a bit more. Sean
For what is is worth, the Stratos edged out the well regarded Musical Fidelity A3cr amp in my system, much to my suprise. If interested in details of the comparison, feel free to email me for a ~1 page review.
Someone mentioned using the Odyssey to drive difficult loads. I have been using the Odyssey Monoblocks to drive ML CLS 2Z and Infinity Kappa 8's. I have been impressed with their unflappability with both of these loads. Both drop below one ohm and the CLS are also a capacitive load. I agree with what everyone has said. It may not be the best but I haven't heard anything better near its price. I think the Classe amps may be similar in their ability to sound good and not misbehave.
I am using the stratos with cap upgraded on the Maggies 1.6QR with superp result. Best bang for the buck for this amp.
I have no problem recommend anyone who wants SS amp to at least listen to it before making a final decision.
Asides the product, Kluas is a great person to do a business with. Very helpful and understanding.