Integrated Amplifiers - Luxman vs Pass Labs

Hello All,


This is my first post here at Audiogon.

My current amplifier is the Luxman L-550axii and my speakers are the Marten Django L and Coherent Audio 15 (coaxial speakers with 15" woofer and high efficiency of approximately 98db).

I'm contemplating making a move with my integrated.  I'm considering the Luxman 590axii or one of the current Pass Labs Integrated's.  I haven't had a chance to listen to the 590 and I've never listened to a Pass product before and the opportunity just doesn't present itself to be able to demo any at a dealer's or in-home.  

I'm hoping those that have heard both the Luxman and any current Pass Integrated could chime in with their thoughts about them and the direction you would go given my speakers. 

In the future, I may look at replacing the Coherent speakers with Audio Note AN-J or AN-E.  Any experience out there with Luxman or Pass Labs and Audio Note speakers??

Thank you to all who chime in with your experience and thoughts!


Let us talk about soup.

Pass is just clear soup,some one love it,some one hate it. But in my word,Pass is a decent clear soup.

Luxman is a meat soup, just  like borscht,some  one love it,some one do not. They give you a lot of taste. I love it



I compared an int250 against a Boulder 866 and an Accuphase E800 on Diptyque DP140 magnetostatic planar speakers.

The Pass amp was fuller sounding than the other two. Definitely not thin and edgy!


Hi bigkidz:  " Our reference equipment does not always sound the best. We learned that certain things just don’t work together to produce the best sound. Blanket statements like this one sounds that way compared to the other are completely useless. You have to try them in your system period."   Well said. These are good words to live by in the audio world. Jeff  

Comparing Pass amplifiers to a couple AR tube amplifiers and then saying they sound lean doesn’t really prove the argument that Pass .8 amplifiers sound lean compared to most mainstream solid state amplifiers including Luxman, in my mind at least.

Yea, I’ve owned a PrimaLuna integrated amplifier for a while when I owned Cornwalls 3s, and an all tube Mystique preamp too to try with my solid state amps, and both had and added lots of warmth and a fuller sound than either my XA250.8 or XA30.8, but I don’t find that unexpected or that they also would not have a fuller sound than C900+M900 Luxman combo I listened to.

The class AB 150.8 is like 15 watts class A; if you want to hear the fuller sounding Pass listen to the XA.8 models.

My Classe CA300 was very smooth and powerful but I don’t remember it being as full sounding as my 30.8; I never got a chance to compare them directly. I’ve heard Sugden amps over the years that have had a nice full sound.

If my 30.8 is lean, then it would be interesting to hear how you describe the sound of say the Benchmark AHB2 :)




I agree, the Pass int 250 was clearly warmer with a fuller more meaty presentation and had a more powerful bass.compared to Boulder 866 and Accuphase E800.

Describtions like lean, thin, sterile, scratchy, etc makes me wonder?!