After much---MUCH experimentation in the realm of reasonably-priced, solid-state amps, I can advise that the most pleasing results were had in conjuction with the Belles 150A Hot Rod amp. My listening room is 25x23x16(ceiling height). Please feel free to email me if you are interested in more details.
Sorry. My above word, "conjuction" should read, "conjunction."
There is one word you need to keep in mind above all others with this speaker, CURRENT. Most people have NO idea how difficult a load this speaker actually presents. That means big solid state, which you understand. Tube amps need not apply. In my opinion, the best match(price/performance) in your list for this speaker is the NAD. NAD amps have no problems driving extremely difficult loads, and going into WAYY low impedences. At your higher price level, I would suggest one amplifier that makes a very synergistic match with the Goldi, the Carver Lightstar or Sunfire by Bob Carver(same amp under their skins). They drive the heck out of the Goldi. You will not be disappointed. Also add McCormack to the Bryston price level, but the Sunfire/Lightstar are DEFINITELY the best amps in your price range. If you have not yet purchased the speakers, I can put you in contact with a guy who sells them new for what most sell them for used.
Trelja, Thank you for your response. I would be interested in your contact. I was looking at a used pair in the $1500 range. Any help would be greatly appriciated.
I would look for a tube friendly set of speakers.To think that you are limited by a speaker choice tells me that the designer of the speaker has some work to do.
TM12, if you read me on this site, one thing you know is that I am a tube freak. That being said, not all equipment is good with all equipment. PSB Goldi speakers are difficult to drive. They are not tube friendly. That is an objective statement. It has nothing to do with them being a good design, or a poor design. They are just a 4 ohm load(many drivers are 4 ohm), and dip even lower in the lower frequencies, and also exhibit a pretty high phase angle. Getting away from simple(1st order) crossovers further burdens an amp. Some feel the paybacks are sonically worth it. In reality, Paul S. Barton(PSB), the designer and owner of the company is one of the best loudspeaker designers in the business(just look at all of his critically acclaimed designs). He is at the forefront of the Canadian loudspeaker phalanx, who have taken advantage of the National Testing Laboratory to develop themselves into some of the world's best speaker companies. In addition to PSB, there are Paradigm, Energy, and Coincident(which you and I both own), etc. Other PSB speakers are tube friendly(particularly their cheaper products). Easy to drive speakers can do things PSB cannot, AND vice versa. Listen to Goldi with the right ancillary equipment, and you may agree that they are a wonderful product. Kevin_Haskins, the dealer is in my area(Philadelphia, PA suburbs), and sells demos for about $1700. With some negotiation, I know you can do better, or even do well on a virgin pair.
Trelja, I have listened to the NAD driving these speakers and I must say, tasty.. The NAD is the cheapest and I guess that I wanted to know all my options before taking the plunge. Have also heard that the Bryston is a good match but the price difference is a barrier. I would try the Carver but don't have a source close which is has one in stock and wouldn't ask for them to order one just so that I could return it. I think the NAD is going to get the nod. Thanks so much for your informed input.
Please note I must respectfully disagree with Trelja and all who purport the Golds present SUCH a difficult load. I have owned the Gold i's for a year and a half and though not the easiest load, for what they ARE, I have found them to be a most forgiving speaker. The fact is, by merely employing a little bit of common sense in my choice of amps with which to experiment, I have yet to find an amp that has NOT made for a very DECENT match! Specifically, I have tried the Bryston 3B, 3BST, 4BST, McCormack DNA-1, Belles 150A, Andy Bartha modified Belles 150A, Belles 150A Hot Rod Edition and most recently, VAC Vintage 100 Mk II (VT 100 Mk II), read---*T U B E* monoblocks---which I happen to absolutely LOVE with the Golds! Moreover, I have found I prefer on most source material, running the VACs in their single-ended mode (57 wpc approx.) as opposed to the ultralinear mode (100 wpc approx.)! Further, after experiencing these rather startling results with the VACs, I am truly tempted to temporarily rewire my newly built Welborne Laurel 300B SET monoblocks for 4 Ohms, just to try them out with the Golds for the heck of seeing what they can do. Finally, the second best match up was with the Bartha modified Belles amp, followed closely by the Belles 150A Hot Rod. *Please note the Bartha modified amp and VACs are very rare to come across and that is why I opted to recommend solely the stock, readily available Belles Hot Rod in my first response in this thread. Again, for your reference, my listening room is 25x23x16.
Trelja Which model do you own.
I have a pair of golds that I have driven with a Carver TFM 45 amp.It has never caused a problem and gets worked very hard at times.
Tm12, I do not like the hassle of tubes and own the PSB Gold I speakers. I love the tube sound but would pose the opposite question, who would want to be limited by an amplifier as to what speakers one could chose? Once I owned a Japanese reciever and it provented me from buying a lot of speakers because it could not drive them. I vowed never again. I use Aragon amps now and I can chose any speaker I like because those amps will drive anything.
Tm12, thanks for the response. I own Coincident Loudspeaker Technology Digital Master/Troubass subwoofers. Basically, they are like Wilson WATT/Puppies, but ala Coincident. As you are very familiar with the brand, you know what that means. Easy to drive(high sensitivity/impedence) and easy to listen to. I looked at speakers for about two years, when I heard them, I bought them. They were THAT good! The only speaker in the two years I looked that gave me an emotional response. Three years later, I am still in love. And still haven't heard anything better. This model was not very well known, but was their flagship in the days when they were making unusual cabinet designs. The problem was, as the company grew, the demand for their speakers grew. These designs were murder to build(according to Coincident). As you know, the cabinets of the new models are conventional. But, I think everything Israel Blume builds is a winner. I am correct in believing you have one of the Conquest iterations? I am sure you love them! Maybe we can converse on Coincident further... By the way, I used to sell PSB speakers. I always felt they sounded great, provided you were able to drive them.