Good Power Amp for Dynaudio Focus

I've got Dynaudio Focus 220's/200c for the fronts, and some 110's for the rear. All of that was going to plug into a Marantz 8002--but I feel I'll be leaving some sound quality behind as well as potentially cooking the Marantz. The Dyn's are 4-ohm speakers at about 87-85dB sensitivity. The Marantz doesn't even claim (in print, anyway) to handle 4-ohm speakers at all--even though they will make that claim on the phone and it doesn't sound half bad to me, at least driving only 2 channels.

Anyway, I figured that a good 2-channel amp would take the heat off the receiver and give me a better 2-channel experience at the same time. I'm 90%/10% on the music/movies ratio.

For features and price, the Parasound A23 looks like a winner. If I did the math right, it could get to 106dB some 5 meters from the speakers (driving 2 channels). I plan to get a powered subwoofer soon, so that too would notch down my power needs.

Do these speakers deserve more power? Going to the A21 buys me about 3dB more output--but 106dB is f'in loud already, right?

I've had great success pairing Dynaudio with McIntosh. I'm currently using a MC402 to drive Special 25's and a MC352 to drive Silverline 17's (dynaudio drives similar to 1.3se). I've also used vintage Mac gear (MC7270) to drive Contour 1.8's & 2.8s as well. The dyn's sing went driven properly.

Good luck
Chad, I'll chime in and help you out here as I'm a Dynaudio/Marantz/Parasound dealer.

First, nice choice in speakers. The Focus series can be outstanding when driven by appropriate amplification. The Marantz 8002 is a very nice receiver. But, you are right, to get the most from your Dyn's an external amplifier is the best way to go.

The Parasound Halo A23 is fabulous for the money, but I'm going to direct you to it's larger multi-channel brother the Halo A51. You need to keep the front 3 channels utilizing the same current for home theater. Using the receiver power is not a good idea for the most important speaker in an HT configuration. Your Dyn's will appreciate the boost in current the A51 gives you too. Especially, at low volume levels. This is where a high powered amplifier is most appreciated.

I've paired many Focus systems with the Parasound Halo's. By far the best pairing is the A51 or A21 powering the Focus 220's. For the money, I cannot recommend a better sounding amplifier with the Dyn's. You would have to spend a lot more to gain anything IMHO.

The Halo A21 amplifier is the much better option over the A23. The Focus 220 will love and reward you for it.
Ok, well that's two votes for more powerful amps.

And now I can say I agree. I realized last night that my old bass (guitar) amp has a stereo power amp that drives 350Wpc @ 4 ohms. It's a Stewart World 1.2. Plugged it in, and the speakers are totally different. Real bass response, the mids are stronger, and the high mids are smoothed out a bit/more natural. I think it may be presenting just a touch less detail than the Marantz's power section, but overall it's clear that those speakers like having the extra power/low impedance drive. This configuration has noticeably higher noise levels than the receiver alone, but not so bad that you could hear it from my normal listening position. It seems about half the noise is from the power amp and half from the pre (based on what happens when I turn down the preamp all the way). The Stewart wasn't made for home hifi use, of course, although it *is* convection cooled, and I'm willing to wager it's among the coolest running amps around. Certainly the lightest (11 lbs) and smallest (1 rack space). No DC trigger tho, so 2 power switches to hit (annoying).

Since I can't afford 5 channels of the good stuff right now, I think I'll "limp along" with the Stewart for a while. At least until Emotiva gets the RPA-2 out.

Thanks for your posts.