Amp suggestions for Avalon Radian HC

Just bought a pair of used Avalon Radian HC speakers and wondered if anyone can tell me which reasonably priced amp would best suit the old classics. I currently have a Tube Research ST-100 but I just wonder if they would be bettered served with something else?? Anyone out there have experience with this speaker. Any input would be appreciated.
Hello Carey,
There are a lot of amps that will drive the Avalon Radian HC's.
When I got my pair I used a pair of Adcom 565A's for a while, then I went to a Bryston 4BST. The Bryston sounded the best of the two.
I now have a pair of Spectral DMA360's and of coarse they sound the best.
The HC's were designed to use MIT cable and Spectral gear.
Look in the archives of Stereophile January 1996, vol. 19 NO. 1, very good review of this combination.
The best thing to do for the HC's is to get a pair of MIT 850 triads. These cables were specially designed for the HC's. When I first got my HC's I ran them with a pair of MIT MH770 CVT cables. When I bought a used pair of MIT 850's it was amazing. The HC's should never be used with any other cable. The HC's sounded very good with the MIT770's but after using the 850's they really sounded great. This will be the biggest upgrade you can do for the HC's.
On amps I would go with Spectral, the Bryston 4BST did sound very good.
But please get a pair of MIT 850 triads. the best money you will spend if you plan on keeping the HC's.
If I sell my HC's the MIT 850's have to go with them.
Joe Nies
Do you think the affect would be the same with a different amp. Like a tube amp?
Some people have had good luck with hi-end tube amps. The Radian's need a lot of power.
The MIT 850 would make more of an upgrade than most any amp IMO.

Try an Audio Research amp? The dealer I bought my Spectral amps from feels that the only tube amp that can drive the Avalon speakers properly are the Audio Research.

Try to buy the MIT 850 Triads first, they need to be used with the speaker, than listen to see if you need more power. You will then have the cables if you change out amps.
I would recommend that if you stay with tubes also make sure to have tube pre-amp IMO.
If you lived in Alaska I would have you over to hear the difference.
Where in AK, I used o live in Anchorage
I tried all sorts of audio research with my ascent ii.
CL120, VT150, CL150, VT200, VT130 with and without mods. While they can drive full range with no clipping they sounded pretty unmusical. Not even close to acceptable compared against TRL s100 mono.
Hello Carey,
I live in Anchorage. Been up here for 21 years now.
I moved up here from Denver.
Giving up already ? I had my ascents for many years before finally throwing in the towel. There are many great qualities of the Radian you will miss.
I'm mixed on weather or not I have the patients to build another system. I may be underpowered because at low volume they are very good indeed. I owned the Ascent Mk 2 in the past and loved them and wish many times that I would have kept them, but I had a different setup then. I know the Radians can sound awesome they blew me away at CES one year. They are very revealing of any system problems. My room is 18x20 with a huge 20 foot vaulted ceiling and opens up to the rest of the house behind me. So therefore I'm trying to fill a very large area. Do you think the MIT wire is necessary part of this equation. I still havent given up I may get them right before they sell.
Not a believer in cables ever except when I had Apogees with low low impedance.
INstead of spending thousands in cables try a pair of cheap high current mono SS amp for the bass and get the dude to drive both the ST100 and the SS amps.
$100 bucks spent tweaking caps and resistors beat $1000 cables IMO but let the flaming begin.
Hello Carey,
If you plan on keeping the HC's, the MIT 850 Triads is a must. I bought my pair used on this site.
The cables will do a dramatic change in sound quality for these speakers.
I have owned my HC's for about 5 years now and I'm very happy I bought the cables.
The cables really are network interface cables. They were specially designed for the HC's. They weigh about 25 lbs for the pair (8 feet long). They break the signal down to having one connection to the amp and has 3 output connectors to the speakers, low, mid & high. You can then remove the jumper connector. The owners manual suggest that going with the Triads is the best thing to do.
They are pricey but well worth it for what they do for the sound.
I payed $2500.00 for my pair used, they listed for $9500.00 when they came out.
With the size of your room I would think you will need more power also, maybe not? When I had my 4BST hooked up they sounded very good and would play loud if I wanted to.
Many good amps out there that will work.
Please try to read the Stereophile review I spoke of.
It is also suggested to have Spectral equipment with these speakers. There have been many forums about this subject also.
I can recommened the MIT 850 Triads without hesitation.
If you buy the cables you can change amps and still will have the proper cable to go with them.
I know some people do not believe cables can make a difference and they are intitled to their opinion.
Since I own the HC's I have first hand experience with there sound.
I would suggest you try to get a used pair (10 feet long) if you can.
The cables (interface cables)really can only be used with the HC's (IMO).
Send me an e-mail if you want to talk about the cables and amps in more detail.
Joe Nies
would love too: My email is: