Is it really night and day


I just read that someone went from a ARC ref-5se to a Ref-6. They claim it is a night and day difference. For some reason I find that hard to believe. I can see there being a difference but night and day to me is an exaggeration. I'll tell you why I think this way. I had an ARC LS-25 for about 10 years and I always thought It was a good pre-amp. One day I got a bug up my ass and decided to upgrade to a LS-27. 

While I will agree the 27 is better than the 25 I would not say there is a night and day difference. Now that is a spread of about 10 years in a model. So of course you do expect some improvements and I have received those. 

Now going back to the Ref-5se. I think it has been around about 3 years. Now they have the Ref-6. So in 3 years there is a night and day difference between the 5Se and the 6 but after a 10 year period between the Ls-25 and the 27 there are a few minor differences. 



taters
Sure it can.  His old Ref 5se was finished in black and his new Ref 6 is finished in silver. Sounds like night and day to me.  
Brf,

I never thought of it that way. Thanks for the Insight.

Taters just try the damn things in your system then you can make an informed decision.
The REF6 is a completely different preamp from the REF5SE.

New chassis, new circuit board, new circuit design, larger power transformer, 2 more tubes, etc.

Why couldn't it be a "night and day" difference in sound?

Technology marches on...
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Embellish indeed!  I think I might have embellished once or twice - especially for the juicy rationalization that my money was well spent!

If you must have the latest, greatest ARC is a good one to get into....the are constantly improving world class products!  Aren't they???

A happy audiophile is not a shopping audiophile.

LOL...I like it! 

Then sadly I'm afraid I am not a happy audiophile as I am always looking at new gear. 

I've never experienced a night and day difference between any components, but my jaw has frequently hit the floor.
Do we have any review(s) on the Ref6 ?
I envy you guys who have experienced a night and day difference. For me, the best I've heard so far is from late morning to early-to-mid afternoon.
Jafant,

I have not seen any reviews yet. I am sure you will in the upcoming months.

Looking forward to it- taters.
Keep me posted & Happy Listening!
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It all depends on what "night and day" means to most people. But, maybe if you replaced those Bose 301’s you’ve been using in your $100k system with upper end Magico’s....THAT I think would be night and day.;)
OP - Amen brother!!! 

The exaggerations have always had to be there for one of two reasons from what I can tell:

1. If the reviewers don't exaggerate how do they convince you to ditch that totally acceptable $5000 piece of gear to get a marginal at best or just lateral move for just $10,000. 

Or

2.  You just spent $10,000 and you need to justify how this marginal if not latteral equipment upgrade is worth it. 

This isnt to say there arnt huge leaps, but in my experience from one generation to another do not huge night and day differences make. 
I agree with JMcGrogan. Since most people on this forum (me included) are constantly listening for ANY improvement to their systems, when we hear a marked improvement (ie 15 percent vs, say, 10 percent), we call that night and day. 
Ivan,

I think the comparison you gave would be night and day. But it is far from the comparison I gave.

I have often found that audiophiles drop off the "in" from the front when they use the word significant.
taters-
 Ihave had the pleasure of auditioning the ARC Ref3, Ref5 & Ref5 SE models.  The Ref6 is going to have to be very "special" to top the 5SE pre-amp.
Jafant,

I am not saying that the Ref-6 Isn't better than the Ref-5se. What I have a problem with is when they describe it as a night and day difference. 

I get get so sick of seeing these night and day references no matter what company they are talking about. It is Just a plain outright exaggeration.




Right On! taters.

I tend to agree that newer does not (always) equal better.
In my honest opinion . I owned the Ref 5 se for about 2 and a half weeks and the demoed the 6. Lets just say that i put my 5 se up for sale right away and bought a brand new 6. The 5 se is a very good sounding preamp, the 6 is like that but WAY more in every way you can think of the 5 se. It is so good i didnt want a used one. I wanted a brand new one from ARC. To me it was well worth the extra thousands. I love this 6 so much that for a single chasis preamp it will stay with me for a very very long time. And yes i totally agree that it a totally different preamp than the 5se. It is not even an upgrade to me but a totally different preamp.  
If you have a lot of money burning a hole in your pocket and you like to get something new every year then jump on the ARC upgrade train. Their preamps sound great.
The company is very good at keeping a guy constantly buying the stuff.
Kinda like cocaine.
I prefer “jaw dropping “ over “night and day”. 
How about “it was so much better that when I heard it I soiled myself”
It will transform your system. 
Diana Krall appeared in my room.
tlong1958........What you said is so not true to me. I DONT have alot of money buring a hole in my pocket. I DONT like getting something new every year..I am NOT  jumping on the ARC train. This ARC Ref 6 is so AWESOME that yes to ME it is a jaw dropping difference between the 5se. I have a Krell FPB 600 and B&W Matrix 800s and never ever will sell or upgrade them . Thats the way I FEEL about the ARC 6. And Jim Morrison and Jim Hendrix came back from the dead and he appeared in my room !!!!!
Nice system - tattooedtrackman
Sounds like (no pun) you guys are having a rockin' time w/ Morrison and Hendrix. It does not get any better than those two.
Happy Listening!
jafant......Thank you....And every time i turn on the 6 another great dead and alive artist appears in my room playing right in front of me !!!!. I really think this is the best audio investment i ever made with such an improvement in sound...All i can tell the people who have not heard the 6 and only up to the 5se and below they are really missing out on an awesome preamp and something very special  and dont judge the difference in sound between the 5se and the 6 if you never ever heard the 6 ..                                                                                                                                                                              mofimadness     ..........  You are exactly RIGHT ON....
Wow. Good enough to raise the dead....that’s awesome 
Tatooedtrackman
Never meant to say you had money to burn, obviously I would have no idea about that. But ARC introduces upgrades (SE versions) and new models more often than most manufacturers, and for the person that has to have the latest and greatest it will require constantly sending units back to them for upgrades, trading in or selling the soon to be eclipsed gear. Costly, and to stay on top of it you will not keep anything very long. I used to sell ARC, and I think it’s very good. But imo, not usually “night and day” improvements. YMMV
tlong1958........Never meant to say you had money to burn...... I know that was not meant for me. You just wrote that in general. And for me , yes i do plan to keep the 6 for a very long time if not forever. Also the Ref 40 and 10 are prob def better than the 6 but i have not interest in them as they are a 2 component set up and have no room for them ,so that is even not an option for me. Like i said TO ME it was a night and day difference between the 5se and 6 with MY ears and components. To each their own. Thats another reason why this hobby is so fun.. So many different opinions. debates , ect ect.. Its all good... The only thing that really matters is you and what you like.  
Also if you read what mofinadness  said in the 4th down from top. He is exactly right about the Ref 6. The Ref 6 is a whole new unit not even an upgrade from the 5se. Like he said ,,,,,,,,,The Ref 6 is a completely different preamp from the REF 5SE. New chassis , new circuit board, new circuit design, larger power transformer, 2 more tubes, etc.. Why couldnt it be a night and day difference in sound?
tattooedtrackman
I have heard the Ref5SE on several auditions w/ ARC, Ayre and Bryston power amps. All combos were spot on. Can you speak to the effect of differences between the 5SE and 6?
Happy Listening!
My wife was in the kitchen and said, what did you do to the system, Honey? It sounds more layered.
All my wife ever says is “turn it down”. And she doesn’t call me honey.