Any thoughts on Krell

Just wondering if anyone out there is getting frustrated with Krells continued changing of product lines and designs. I have been a very loyal Krell user, but I am feeling that Krell has changed their business philosophy. I have coughed up a ton of dough on KPS25SC, KAS's, FPB's, and the AVS which turned out to be non upgradable. each time I settle in to these large investments, Krell changes the look and the entire line. The value of the "last version" drops like a rock for all of us users. Unlike a brand like McIntosh that has a philosphy of at least leaving the appearance the same. Perhaps I am bit sensitive on this topic. Any thoughts?
Products are constantly being made "new and improved" in order to get continuing market attention. It's a common business marketing tactic that I don't think will change. It isn't unique to Krell, or to electronic products for that matter. My favourite brand is continually making improvements, but at least they keep the cosmetics intact for about eight to ten years at a time. The best advice I would offer is simply to realize what their approach is and take advantage of it. In other words, don't buy new but buy the reently discontinued model at a great discount price! If they change frequently, you're not going to be missing out on quality or any vast technological improvement. And you can resell at little or no loss. That's why a lot of us are here at Audiogon. sure helps all of those that purchase their gear here used on Agon. I guess that it all really depends upon what one really want in a system. How much of a priority is placed for some on cosmetics is completely subjective.

I noticed that in your other thread from 5 years ago you were asking about the KAS's. It seems that the respondants were very favorable towards the KAS vs the newer offerings and some even made mention that "Dan" agreed that sonics had changed very slightly. With regards to your particular question...did you not buy your KAS's on the used market? Wouldn't you have benefitted (by a significant $$$$$ margin) from that side of the equation as it was no longer the "latest version" and would rather fall under the "last version" category that you refer to?

Bottom line lose more $ on depreciation when you buy new...that pretty much goes for most things with a few exceptions.

just my 2c fwiw
Buy the gear for what it sounds like now and whehter or not you like the looks.

Seems to me if you consider it a large investment (I do) then you would want to buy something that would keep you happy for a while. Regardless of what else comes on the market.
I think the most relevant point which Stenckr raised is about the non-upgradeability of the AVS! Part of the justification for the high price of the AVS was the claim that Krell products do not get obsolete- you can upgrade to the latest rather than buying new. However, with the AVs Krell failed in abig way- at no point was it seriously upgradeable other than the DTS option. Same is now true for the HTS2 and current HTS7.1- no way to get HDMI switching and with most newer display devices shunning component video for HDMI this is a major handicap. Moreover, for those of us with the necessary funds and desire to buy the latest, Krell has no new processor available as of now. The unit exhibited at the (which show?) early this year is still on the drawing board. Change in cosmetics is not a big issue, atleast for me. Nowadays with outstanding metal work available for peanuts (literally) from Asian manufacturers, it is easy and cheap for Krell to change cosmetics. It is very possible that the reason cosmetics stayed constant in earlier years was due to the high tooling costs and paucity of alternate sources. Just my opinion, ofcourse.
Newer is not always better. I'm not a Krell fan, but I prefer the sound of older Krell gear to that of the newer gear. Just relax and enjoy what you have.
I am a Krell fan, but I would never buy it new for the reasons you mention. Being able to buy a used piece in good condition at a bargain is positive, not a negative to me. But then, I don't necessarily need the latest and greatest, just something that fits my needs.
I think this upgrade thing is way outta hand.

If you don't like the looks in the first place, go for something else !

Like Jmcgrogan2, I prefer the older KSA series, for sonics and looks.

I'm not saying products should never improve, but a well-designed topology should last longer.

Yeah, we're here on AudiogoN for a good deal, so that part IS beneficial.

AC treatment seems to be the important "upgrade" as of later years, that's where I'm at.
I have two thoughts on this. I've had a coupele of Audio Research components in the past. Seems like everytime I turned around, there was another MK something for my amp or preamp that was just an amazing breakthrough for two grand and up. That got fairly frustrating. About 8 months after I bought my Meitner rig, here comes the SE upgrade for 5 grand. Now that DCC-2 cost about 12 grand new. So with no dealer markup, no shipping, no marketing, when the probable actual cost of manufacture was about 3 grand originally,they now want 5 grand for an "amazing" upgrade. I have elected not to participate. All of the above has been tres frustrating. However, when I got the upgrades on the Audio Research Ref2, the sound was unmistakably better but I am not sure the VT100 upgrade to me made that much of a difference. So maybe the Meitner upgrade is "amazing". I don;t want to spend 5 grand without hearing it. Hell if they are so sure it is amazing, let me borrow one for a week and compare it to my non-SE version. And then about every five years or so it seems that even the upgrade guys come up with new lines anyways. Probably some engineers are driven to continually do better, which ones they are I won't know until I listen to it. But it is always my option to upgrade or not, and there are no aestetic changes for my wife to complain about. Upgrades are also cheaper then replacements if I get "upgradeitis, it still leaves money to save for my kids college fund:)

Now let;s take the other mfrs. like Krell. About every two years they come up with a new line, the WAF factor goes to hell because if you keep your old Krell, it no longer matches. It is a new box at new prices. Once anybody replaces a line, in any industry, the old line plummets. Look at the huge discounts on the old body styles of Merceces S and CL series right now. But with Krell, you get a brand new look, and hopefully, more than just a few mods to the box. One thing though, it is much easier to compare your old box at home to the new box borrowed from the dealer. Much harder to get the dealer to let you compare MK1 to MK3 at your home. So in my opinion you can make a much more informed opinion on a new box before you buy, and, afterall, nobody is twisting your arm.

In this day and age, everything in electronic advances are accelerated. The days of buying a Hewlett Packard 8566b spec an and having it be the best 22ghz spec an for 20 years are gone. Which is why, finding a dealer you can trust is absolutely worth the money. A good dealer will tell you in their opinion whether an upgrade or replacement is worth it or not. They listen to this stuff day in and day out, they talk to the mfr., they can compare it on a variety of gear. They can help stop the big mistakes one can make. One of the things I like to do when I get the upgrade bug is check the stereophile listing with components that have been recommended for three years or more, to me it means that the mfr is satsified enough with the product and thought process, and put enough thought in ahead of time, that it doesn't need replacement, modification or upgrade in six months after it is introduced. It also probably is axiomatic that it sells well enough and reviewed well enough that the mfr feels no compelling need to make changes to the unit. Good reason to audition that unit I think.


The Meitner upgrade "IS" simply amazing and like you I have owned many ARC components, most recently the Ref 2 MK ll to the Ref 3.

I have also owned literally every bit of Krell gear over the years until I went all tube. My favorites were their KPS 25SC, KRC-HR and their Reference 64 DAC and MD-10 transport. I used these with their 750 Mcx monos and the sound was at the height of the game. Had I not wanted to go all tubes I would still be right there with that gear.

As for the Meitner gear and the SE upgrade trust me when I tell you that for digital, there isn't IMO any better. Their gear is what has kept me from jumping back into the analog and vinyl arena.
FWIW, I've sorta thought Krell sold out a bit. I'm a big fan of their class A audio amps, but, don't think their integrateds and home theatre gear are worthy of the name. Seems a bit misleading to me. Go figure.
Well then maybe it's time you make a change? If you feel like trying something different, by all means go for it. Part of owning very expensive equipment is believing in them. If you don't have a close connection on all levels, then it isn't the right match. Just like mating amps to speakers. It's no different. Get it right and the rewards are stellar. Good luck and have fun

"I'm a big fan of their class A audio amps, but, don't think their integrateds and home theatre gear are worthy of the name. Seems a bit misleading to me. Go figure."

That is because Dan D'Agostino has always been associated with power amps first and foremost and only HT as a second thought. As far as speakers, i won't even comment. Sometimes sticking with what one does best is the key to success.
Oneobgyn, I loved the KRC-HR too... still have it around somewhere... hmmm..oughta try it with the MBL101s just for fun. I'm really depressed that the SE upgrade on the Meitner is really good, the way my system is now,after a preamp upgrade, I probably am going to have to do that. Still don't you think almost fifty percent of the cost of new for what I understand are new algorithms seems a bit much as you pay the factory direct and I apparently can't upgrade the drive at the same time. I know that the other things I tried against it (Esoteric, Ayre CD-5x, Wadia 861) weren't really close in my system.
I wish I had my Krell 300i back. This 400xi sounds to sweet. They took out the deep rich ooomph.
Hi Oneobgyn,
Here is an extract that you said,
I have also owned literally every bit of Krell gear over the years until I went all tube. My favorites were their KPS 25SC, KRC-HR and their Reference 64 DAC and MD-10 transport. I used these with their 750 Mcx monos and the sound was at the height of the game. Had I not wanted to go all tubes I would still be right there with that gear.
Which combo is the more extended, natural, ie better KPS25 OR KRC-HR Reference64- md10?
Currently have a Krell KPS20i/L
I have an FPB 300cx for more than 4 years and don't think about "upgrading" or changing it just because Krell has come out with a new (much more expensive) line. I think Krell is one of the lesser sinners in the upgrade brothel, with the FPB series having been around for 6-7 years and built to last and perform well for at least 20 years. Krell is positively saintly compared to ARC or now CJ with its top pre's.

Solution: if you like the Krell sound and don't like the frequent generations, then buy used.

Case closed.