For synergy, I'd consider a pair of ML 33H monoblocks (or 33's if you don't think they'd be overkill) and drive them with the ML 32.
The other great SS combo for the PDs (but expensive) would be the darTZeel amp(s) and preamp.
Dear Michauyuen: Well, synergy is the " name of the game ". Due that you are bi-amp your system it is important that both amplifiers have similar characteristics not only in their input sensitivity but in their tonal balance, frequency response, slew rate, output impedance, etc., etc., from this point of view the Krell's 700CX or the Evolution will be a great match for the Pipedreams/Krell FPB600/ML32.
Better than that: ( with out the FPB600 ) two 700CX or two Evolution pairs.
Regards and enjoy the music.
Save a ton of money & get a Krell FPB 600 w. an Elrod Power cord.
I disagree with Raul on this one. Yes synergy is very important, which is why I suggest you stick with Mark Levinson as your main amps and also as they're the preferred amps to match with the terrific 32 preamp.
As for the low end, within rather broad limits, you could use just about any SS amp that has enough power and damping: just about anything with 200W/ch @ 8 ohms, i.e. Bryston, ML, Krell, Parasound, etc, etc, it really doesn't matter.
If you believe Raul is correct about all the amps (in a biamped system) having similar characteristics then the logical conclusion would be to go with all ML amps. In other words, sell the FPB 600 and get a ML for the subs too, but I really think that's unnecessary. The most important synergy is between the preamp and main amps, not between the main amps and the subwoofer amps. As proof, look at all the biamper-s who use tubes on top and ss on the bottom -- synergy? I don't think so.
I didn't know Raul was such a big Krell fan, ha ha ;--)
Having bi-amped before-in hind sight,both amps should be matched.Soundstage and depth perspective will differ from amp to amp.I'm not sure I would want the Krell on top,but I suppose a quick listen would answer that question.
Pass might be a good direction:X600s/XA-60/100 on top.The pipes don't need tons of power for their towers.
Dear Neil: You are totally wrong when you rely on: " As proof, look at all the biamper-s who use tubes on top and ss on the bottom -- synergy? I don't think so. " +++++
All those people are totally wrong because, between other things, there is no synergy.
The fact that many people with no know-how try the bi-amp subject in the wrong way does not mean that is correct: it is still wrong!!. We can argue ( in other post ) about if Michauyen accept.
Your other statement: +++++ " As for the low end, within rather broad limits, you could use just about any SS amp that has enough power and damping: just about anything with 200W/ch @ 8 ohms, i.e. Bryston, ML, Krell, Parasound, etc, etc, it really doesn't matter. " +++++, is a totally misunderstood about the low bass reproduction ( especially speakers like the Pipedreams ), maybe for you it does not matters which amplifier you use at the low end but for me and people like Michauyen ( that's why, I assume, he own the Pipedreams and that kind of electronics. ) that matters and about quality sound reproduction I can tell you: it matters a lot!!!
Nsgarch, the most difficulty frequency range to reproduce with high quality are the low and very low music octaves. This is the hardest task for speaker builders and in a little less step for the electronic designers: amps/preamps. Why do you think that a big full range speaker has a very high price? only because is " big " ?, no it is because it can give you the " glory " to reproduce in accurate way those low end octaves and that cost a lot of money.
None of the amplifiers that you mentioned ( btw, any one/other ) could give you the same quality low end response playing the Pipedreams and this fact: matters and matters a lot.
Why do you think that exist the self powered subwoofers instead than subwoofers where you can choice the amps?. All the self powered subwoofer builders design a special bass amplifier with operational characteristics that match with precison with all the operational characteristics of the woofer design.
That's why is of crucial importance the bass amp for the Pipedreams and that's why is of crucial importance define which one, that in this case is the Krell one that all we know are one of the greatess amplifiers playing that low frequency range and that Michauyuen already own.
My advise ( in my humble opinion ) in this post certainly tell on: synergy,neutrality,tonal balance and quality sound reproduction. I respect your point of view but I totally disagree with...
Regards and enjoy the music.
I have Pipedreams Reference 18's.
I'm using a Levinson 32 with a pair of Levinson 33's on the woofers and 33H on the mid/tweeters. Very good combo.
I would think that you could continue with your Krell on the woofers without a problem.
Thanks Beemer, for adding another voice of reason. If Michauyuen will follow your example, I'm sure he'll have no complaints (even if he keeps his Krell on the bottom ;--).
The best I ever heard the Pipe Dreams sound (and it was stunning) was driven by the big 400-pound GamuT S-300 amplifier. I think that amp is no longer made, but every now and then one shows up used.
The treble of the Krell is fixed w. the Elrod power cord. I stongly suggest you try it. You will save a lot of money. Just get the power cord & try the Krell on top. It transforms the Krell FPB 600. Even helps the articulation of the bass. It will save you a lot of money. Just try to Elrod Power Cord on your existing Krell & try it on the 2 towers. I have heard it with tubes in a show and I could hear the subwoofer separate from the Towers. The towers sounded glorious.
The Gamut m200 pair should do the trick.
First of all, thanks for all the very helpful responses.
Sorry I forgot to state that I also have the VAC Master Controller Preamp and can also use that with the Pipedreams. The only qualification is that I want to use ss, not tubes for my amps and that I want to biamp the system. I would consider selling the Krell if the synergy issue is a real problem.
Any thoughts regarding SS amps with the VAC preamp?
The biggest problems that i've seen with trying to run a tubed preamp with an SS power amp had to do with impedance mismatches. Due to the way that most gear is ( poorly ) designed, you have to factor in a HUGE impedance mismatch when going this route. That is, most tubed pre's want to see a very high input impedance on an amp. Trying to run a tubed pre with an SS amp that has a lower input impedance typically results in a very warm, syrupy thick bloat that sounds terrible. So long as you can keep the input impedance of the amplifier kind of high, you shouldn't run into too many problems. Otherwise, you may end up spending a fortune on cabling and tube-rolling trying to resolve a basic electrical mismatch. Sean
I use with 21 Pipedreams :
digital :EMM Labs Meitner combo SACD+ DAC6e ( cd+ sacd) the best
analogue :Forsell Air reference+ Forsell arm+ Lyra Clavis
phono pre amp ( two chassis all tube)*
preamp (two chassis all tube)*
for mid \treble amplification:
two OTL monos 550w each in 8 ohms ( pl 519 tubes)*
*( produced by me and a friend)
All nordost Valhalla and Shunuata Anaconda and 2 Hydra 8
this is the best sound i got from 21 pipes: coerent,fast; detailed,musical ,non fatiguing for all levels and kind of music
Crag Oxford,boss of Nearfield Acoustics and Audio Emotion Audio had heared my system at my home in Portugal and ... ask him his opinion, he has bought from me same amps afterwards...
( if someone interested in photos,and avaibiliy contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org or +351937319271)
Before i tried Spectral gear,Audionote gear,OTL Tenor w75 with Krell,and Qsc 4050 but no coherency and musicality at all
I have pipe dreams with all new drivers and just use
audio reasearch 600 tube amps and accuphase dp-700
with all nordost valhalla cables.Amps were plugged into
their own deacated wall circuits,now I use audience
arp2t that plug into wall with no powercord,amps plug
into them,just the best