Bryston 4B SST or my modded Hafler DH-220?
I have a mid-fi system that exists primarily of a Denon AVR X-4000 HT receiver/pre, an Adcom GFA6000 driving Paradigm Phantom v2 rears and a Magnepan MMMG-C center, and a Hafler DH-220 with Musical Concepts’ PA-3A upgrade driving Maggie MMGs in front. This upgrade includes their TP-200 torroid transformer with 7A/625 watt capability, a pair of 27,000 uF power caps, and the upgraded circuit. I’ve been very happy with the sound of this amplifier and it’s all-around performance.
Recently, the right channel thermal protection switch blew and required repair. While inspecting the guts of the amp, I noticed that the original fuses that came with amp when I bought it (used, obviously) were crusted over with purplish coating. They were still functional, but I couldn’t tell their amperage. They appeared to be white ceramic-type fuses and I thought I could make out "20A". It appeared to me by research that they should have been 5 amp fuses. I replaced the fuses (all five, ) and sent it of for service. I don’t believe the Maggies are driven hard and believe the Hafler has plenty of juice to drive them, as I listen to mostly jazz, Lyle Lovett/Steely Dan genre music, and run a peak volume of maybe -12 dB on the Denon scale for maybe 10 to 15 minute spurts. Standard volume is typically - 20 dB for extended listening. This doesn’t strike me as a heavy load considering the amp’s upgraded capability. The amp has performed fine with the 5A fuses I dropped in since getting it back from the shop.
I’ve read a fair bit on other amps that marry well with the Maggies, and the condition of those fuses inside my Hafler got me wondering whether they did, in fact, get overloaded (but didn’t blow) and the amp is working too hard driving the Maggies. Maybe they’ve been in that condition for years, I don’t know. I’ve started wondering whether a Bryston 4B SST would be a better match for the MMGs over the Hafler and within my budgeted, mid-fi sensibilities, but I really do like the amplifier and what it did for the Maggies after running them through the Adcom. Night and day difference. I’ve heard mixed reviews on the Bryston, but the majority opinion seems to be that they marry well with Magnepan speakers, are very well-built pieces, and have (to most) excellent sonic qualities.
Would there be any value to a perceived "upgrade" to the Bryston over the modded Hafler? I don't think there is any power upgrade to the Bryston, if I'm analyzing things correctly. Am I stirring a tempest in a teacup, worrying over nothing, and likely to realize little sonic difference after all is said and done for my admittedly mid-fi system?
Looking for valued input before I go off doing something stupid.