I made a gainclone with premier parts such as blackgate caps 2 years ago, it sounds very good. However I still prefer class A Aleph, warmer, sweeter, more liquid, less ss taste.
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Perhaps a slightly skewed example, but I own both a gainclone and class-A amp built by Tim Rawson. The gainclone being a dual-mono 200watt, the class-A a 15watt Aleph clone.
Which I prefer depends on my mood and music being played.
Strengths of the gainclone; Smooth mids and highs with "Reach out and touch it" transparency, stunning soundstaging front to back/side to side with pinpoint imaging.
Strengths of the Aleph; Perfect tonal balance top to bottom, more weighty presentation overall lends to more natural sounding vocals, strong articulate bass.
Both remarkable amplifiers, neither of which I'd easily part with.
I'm thinking about a moving to Gainclone amps from pure class A or class AB. Do gainclone amps consume a lot less electricity than Class A or AB amps? Some of my Class A and Class AB amps draw 200-300 watts at idle and require quite a bit of warm-up time as well. I'm hoping to move onto good sounding amps that won't draw so much. I don't mind waiting for the amps to warm up. It is the draw that is getting me now. I'm jsut trying to trim the electric bill.
Thanks in advance.
I've owned Monarchy SM-70 Pro monoblocks, a Rawson First Watt F4 clone, and now an Audiosector Patek. All are great in different ways. The Monarchys were the most tube-like, ran very hot, and were too noisy into my Zu Druids. The Rawson ran *extremely* hot, was a little more neutral than the Monarchys, was dead quiet, but ran out of gas when I turned it up. The Patek is very neutral, also dead quiet, has plenty of power, and never even gets warm.
All were run with tube preamps (Wright WLA12A, Jolida Music Envoy, now Consonance Cyber 222) and right now I'm pretty happy with the 6SN7 preamp and gainclone combo.
Jedinite24, I know where you're coming from, but I recommend checking your electric costs to make sure the dollars add up. For example, let's say you pay $0.15 per kW hour for trons, and you play your 300 watt-sucking amp six hours a day. That would come to about $100 per year. Changing to an amp only drawing 75 watts would save you about $75 per year.
How much will it cost you to upgrade to amps that hopefully just sound as good, just to save $75 per year?
Of course, if you've just got the upgrade bug, or if you need to justify the expense for something you want anyway, then think of it like this:
It's not just $75, you're also helping to save the planet:)
Thanks for chiming in. You make some valid points. I'm going to scrutinize my electric bill further and do the math on consumption. Then I'm going to check on prices of the Class D amps I like or have heard good things about. I didn't look too deeply into the cost of upgrading into Class D amps. Some of the nice ones are min $1000 which is a good amount for me.
I like your rationale for justifying the expense. Good stuff.
Dave aka Armstrod. Thanks for chiming in as well. I'll look at those Patek amps. I was looking at the Monarchy SM-70 amps but when I saw how much electricity each consumed I couldn't pull the trigger on them.
Another way to look at what Auxetophone pointed out is to consider an hourly vs yearly cost.
My Pass monos draw 300 watts each. I pay a total of 13 cents for every 1000 watts I consume. So 600 watts (both monos together) cost me a little less than 8 cents per hour. My listening sessions usually last a couple hours and if I take breaks during it, the amps may be on for 5 or 6 hours. So my enjoyment cost me 40 to 50 cents for that 5-6 hour session. Your 200-300 watt draw would probably cost you less than a nickel an hour.
If you can find something/anything that can entertain you for less than a nickel an hour go for it. I like the idea of helping the planet.