AMP or Preamp


What to add next to my system, budget $5000 to $7000?  My current system consist of Wilson Sasha speakers, Yamaha RX-A3050 receiver that I run pure direct, Rotel RB-1590 2x350 amp, Hegel DAC and a Bluesound Vault 2i streamer.  I have been looking at a Mcintosh C2600 to replace the Yamaha receiver to give me the option of adding a turn table at a later date or would adding mono blocks give me the most bang for the bucks or other options?   


Ag insider logo xs@2xnobnewob
With respect to amplification Audio Research (tubes) and Pass (solid state) both seem to be popular pairings with Wilson speakers.

An interesting post in this thread:

Jmwick 12-30-2017
I have the Sasha 2 powered by the ARC Reference 75 SE which is more than adequate. Prior to my purchase I did a fair amount of research, and on two sites it was reported that Wilson used the Ref 75 to voice the Sasha 2 s.
My dealer had the Sashas setup in the  showroom with the Ref 75 SE for demo purposes and he knows his stuff owning the same store since 1977. He did hook them up with the Ayre mono blocks which also sounded quite good ( a lot more money ), but to my ears I preferred the ARC.
My listening room is 21x15.

There are presently three used Audio Research Ref 75 (non-SE) power amplifiers listed for sale here, for less than $5K, and for less than $4K in one of those cases. Note though that the ARC Reference series amps provide only balanced inputs, and will not work properly if provided with single-ended inputs via RCA-to-XLR adapters.

Regarding phono stages, personally I would not let the inclusion of a phono stage be a factor in selection of a preamp or integrated amp. It would most likely be best to add a separate phono stage at a later date, such as the superlative Herron that was mentioned.

Good luck. Regards,
-- Al



Well nob, I think you did the absolutely right thing. To Hell with the nay-sayers!

Buy speakers first and then upgrade everything to that level. I bought Magnepan Tympani 1a's in 1973, because they were the absolute best to my ears. Paired them with solid state kit electronics, because that's all the money that was left over. Eventually upgraded to all ARC, over 5 years. What a journey! Great fun at every stage! Take your time!! Audition and enjoy!!!

Just in case anyone tries to sell you expensive cabling, I suggest that you buy the cheapest cabling you can find. I mean, real cheap. Like $50 a pair, max. Spend your money where everyone agrees that it counts - electronics, turntable, everywhere but cables.

After you've got your system where you want it, then and only then fine tune it with cables. Try out loaners in your system in your own sweet time. If something proves its worth, then by all means buy it. But cabling is a great way to spend much money for little benefit - the worst cost/benefit ratio in audio, IMO. YMMV

Good luck! Have fun!!
Nob, I suggest that you listen to almarg. Since you seem to be new here, you may not know who is worth listening to. Almarg is one of them. Atmasphere is another.
luxman with the best suggestion.. Get the Parasound JC2 with a pair JC1's.. They're both listed here on Agon right now and well within your budget.. Your Wilsons will thank you
Just in case anyone tries to sell you expensive cabling, I suggest that you buy the cheapest cabling you can find.
Huh, that's interesting.  I have found that cabling is extremely important and just as significant as the electronics you pick.  You can make or break the system by what cabling you buy.