Amp/Pre-amp for Magnepan 1.7

Hello all, and I apologize if this is in the incorrect forum.

I've finally managed to save a little bit of coin and am going to upgrade my stereo, and I'm thoroughly intimidated by the experience. I've been using the same Adcom system since 1991, but I've decided to spend a bit more (for me, at least) in an upgrade that will hopefully last me another 20 years.

I've chosen the Magnepan 1.7's, and I have a Sunfire amp already, but I am completely lost when it comes to the amp/pre-amp. As I said, I'm thoroughly intimidated by the process.

What I basically want is enough power to cleanly drive the magnepans, with a pre-amp that will afford me the flexibility to run my tv through the speakers while also allowing friends, when they come over, to simply plug their ipod or what not in.

I want to spend no more than 3k. Any suggestions?
Yours is a very open question, so it is a bit difficult to address it.

First of all, if you tell us a bit more about how do you like your sound, it would help us if we are to suggest you brand/models (bright, relaxed, detailed, euphonic,...).

You didn't say if you want to keep your current Sunfire amp or would like to change it as well.

May be you could start buying a preamp and listening to the results with your current amp and speakers and then decide the way to proceed. Do not forget the importance of cables. With so detailed speakers you'll notice them in the final result.

In order to conect an ipod, you could go with a preamp that has an integrated craddle for it, go for an independent craddle or simply connect the ipod to the preamp via a cable (jack to RCA).

To break the fire, I can suggest you a cheap, very good sounding preamp, that is hassle free. It is a Promitheus TVC passive pre. Google a bit to see what people think about it.


You may get dozens of answers and half that many equipment recommendations. For low $$, you may hear Rotel or Emotiva recommended. for lots more $$, some like the 'd' amp, Spectron. Or the 'd' amp Bel Canto monos. Krell? on the list. Bryston? Absolutely. Pass Labs? of course.

Best bet, IMO, is to go somewhere and listen to stuff. What were the Maggies shown with? Since you bought 'em, you apparently liked what you heard. You could start there, perhaps.

But, and again just my Opinion, Don't bother with Ipod unless you are playing lossless files thru something like the Wadia digital dock. Apple computers have built in optical out for direct connect to a DA or you can do a wireless stream thing using an Airport Express. But that is WAY past where you need to be.