Try GamuT D200mk3 and CR2 preamp...incredible soundstage with the Audio Physics, less expensive too.
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Also you might want to add the Edge amplifiers to your list - Spectral is the only thing that perhaps comes close to Edge (according to HP), and Edge has clarity, speed, ... and finesse....something very, very few amps have ... in spades. Soundstaging is almost always best with monoblocks.
-Mike (Edge Dealer)
Edge=ugly wedding cake amp. Some of the poorest industrial design I have ever seen. With looks like that, a price tag no sane person would countenance, one would seriously hope that it sounds good. In fact, one would seriously hope that it transcends the laws of physics. Good luck Edge! At least Spectral looks solid and serious. Maybe there is more to blind testing than meets the eye?
I have tried a Spectral preamp/amp, Transparent cable system in a previous system. I have owned 28 different amps in the past 12 years. Give Spectron a look. A digital amp that has quickness ( slew rate, rise time ) and neutrality. It allows you to voice your system however you want to. Power output is tremendous with over 600 wpc. Does things other amps and digital amps cannot. I needed to have a lot of convincing to even try a digital amp. No bits chopped here. It is glorious now that I have tried it. It never went back. Try Galen Carol Audio to take one for a spin and a fair deal, gcaudio.com.
Pbb? They do transcend the laws of physics (as we have known them) as regards to sound - as most people, who have actually heard them, agree. But if you want to talk ergonomics, a superset of industrial design, then we will have to talk about ease of deployment, child/pet safety issues, room temperature impact, as well as visual appearance. Edge does very, very well in these categories compared to other amplifiers.
If you just want to talk about one's personal preferences as regards to the 'most beuatiful amp', which I believe is already a thread somewhere else, (and almost laugh-out-loud funny with all the contrasting points of view) then I personally think that almost all solidstate (and most tubed) amps are just boring looking boxes, with the two notable exceptions being the Edge NL Reference and the Halcros... but who should care what amps someone else thinks look awesome? All amps have their fans who love their appearance, including the Spectral and Edge amps.
Mike, spoken like a true salesperson! I hope I am a very small minority (would not be the first time) to think that they (at least from photos) are some of the worst examlples of industrial design ever seen. There is such a thing as taste. There is such a thing as quality industrial design. I think that Edge fails on both count. Wish you well with the line.
Have you considered Jeff Rowland equipment? Based on the above, it seems you are getting many opinions from many people. I strongly suggest you borrow several units and try them out with your Naim CD player and Audio Physic Virgo II's. This is the only way you are going to really know what you like. cheers..
In my area, there is very little retail high end gear. There is not a dealer for either Spectral or Rowland. However, I am pleased with my Rowland Model 12's matched with my Spectral 30 pre.
Because the resources for me to do a/b demos are not in my back yard, please describe the different sound that in your opinion, Rowland and Spectral have.
I think you have a great combination. I love the DMC 30 and I am also a great fan Rowland amplifiers. But there are sonical differences. Rowland gear tends to be warmer, Spectral amplifiers (I think) have more resolution but not as much weight.
I have also combined Rowland with Spectral: the SDR 1000 with the Concentra and I think that this was the best decision I ever made!