The 30.2 is only 30 watts. Perhaps the speakers at the store simply needed more power than the 30.2 could deliver. It's all about system matching. As long as it sounds good in your system, that's all that matters.
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Good comment from Cruz123. Base your confidence on what your ears tell you in a familiar listening environment and with familiar ancillary gear.
What speakers do you own vs those used in demo at the store? Also, maybe your room dimensions/acoustics differ a lot from that of the audio store? Finally, when you got it back home and hooked up...did it still sound great? That's the bottom line.
I understand system synergy.But had you thought about the fact that your RWA unit had been plugged into your system for a longer period.I do not begin an evaluation until a unit has had time to "settle in".Which I guess-timate to be about 3 days.
How did it sound when installed back in your system,and how long has it been back in?
>>I am so confused and feel quite embarassed for having talked it up so much. My confidence in my amp is quite shaken.<<
Do not be.
RWA is neither thin or a wimp to mop the floor with.
Because it locked synergy with your friend's carefully selected components (which most likely were chosen to complement each other to begin with) doesn't mean a whole lot.
Remember synergy and comparability ?
There is your answer.
Your friend might be up by one (1) but every dog has its day.
I have seen it happened (many, many times)....... except the score wasn't in dealer's favor.
But away, some of the speakers which sound great with RWA:
SD speakers. Example: Omega
Horns: Carder Sound
The speakers I have in my system are Focal Profile 918s. I can't be sure but I would guess that they are not hugely unlike the Triangles that were in my friends store and that we hooked up to my amp. I was sure to do the test on speakers that were efficient enough to work with my amp, and as it turns out the Triangles had a very similar impedance to my Focals. While I am pretty sure my Focals are more to my liking than the Triangles, I can't attribute the outcome of the test to this discrepancy. I typically use an arcam cd36 or a project turntable as a source. In the store we used an esoteric cd player (I don't recall the model, but it was current). Also I use Cardas Golden Reference interconnects and Acoustic Zen Hollograph speaker cables in my system, as well as Shunyata power cables and a Shunyata Hydra for my cd player. Finally, the drive over was about 15 min and since I live in Canada and park outside my car was really cold, about -5 or -10 for most of the ride.
While there were many variables I could associate with what happened, we did our best to interchange many cables as well as sources and in total I ran the unit for nearly two hours in the store, all of which which did help to level the playing field a little. I should note that while the Signature 30.2 did produce a much better sound over the two hours period, it was still disappointing. When I first hooked it up it sounded worse than I care to talk about. I was truly stunned.
Anyway, with my tail between my legs I returned home and hooked it back up to my system and, bingo, it was great sounding again. I really do like my amp, but I can't explain what happened during the test at the store. The outcome led one store employee to refer to my Red Wine as an amp "for kids". Exactly what that means, I don't know, but, well, ya.
In the end I am siding with the positive comments left by you all since I know what my amp can do when things align and it's damn great sound.
Salesmen want you to purchase something.With enough doubt bestowed upon a customer,many will take the bait.An early Jolida I heard at the store I worked at(some time ago) was hooked to some small Mordant-Short speakers-wonderful sound,couldn't believe.The owner changed to a different speaker,awful.The 'right combo" may shine,wrong and you go running.Which was the culprit??
Actually I have noticed that eating cheese before I go to bed makes me have weird dreams. It was probaby the cheese that made doubt my amp in my dreams. Also, since I'm 30 and feel lucky that I could afford a $2500 amp, I'm wondering what "kids" this guy knows with that much money and an interest in battery powered 30 watt amps. I guess rich kids are weird as hell these days. Most kids I see have iPods and low-fi, but still massive, headphones. Actually, I've been meaning to buy myself an iPod...
I agree completely that as a rule this type of move about will unsettle a listener. However, in this particular instance it was clear to myself and the others who had never heard the Red Wine unit before that it was providing an underwhelming sound. The music sounded completely flat with no dimensionality or soundstage and thus no dynamism. Unlike the rest of those who were present, I was familiar with what this amp can do in a more favorable setting and how great it can be. Unfortunately, everyone else who was there will never take it seriously again. Oh well, too bad for them.
The music sounded completely flat with no dimensionality or soundstage and thus no dynamism.
I feel compelled to point out that dimensionality and soundstaging have nothing to do with dynamics.
FYI, cold batteries are able to provide much less current than warm ones. Sounds like that could have been a factor.