I can't speak to that specific amp, but having owned products from both manufacturers, I would favor Rogue with their innovative designs, higher caliber build quality (made in USA), and outstanding service. IME, moving from Jolida to Rogue was a step up.
It may not be a concern, but Jolida USA is involved in a lawsuit with Jolida China and who knows what that will mean as far as service in the future.
Maybe there are many Jolidas for sale due to the fact that people buy them as an entry level to a audiophile system and then eventually trade up.
Some of the Jolida stuff certainly isn't awful (I had and liked their JD100A long ago), which can't be said of a lot of chinese gear, but anything Rogue will be a big step up in build quality and support...plus their gear sounds excellent. With all the legal mess going on between the 2 entities claiming the name "Jolida", I wouldn't be certain of support there.
Furthermore, stuff from China is getting to be as expensive as (or even MORE than) similarly spec'd designed-and-built-in-USA Rogue gear. Lots of cash going to glorified middlemen with the china gear. I don't see the logic in considering china-fi under those circumstances.
That Rogue Class D with a tube front end seems to be getting some good press...and Rogue is a great US company. For the record, USA Jolida (MD) is doing fine (look up the details of the lawsuit...it's silly), and their recent stuff is very well made and sounds great. It's just less expensive so I think it suffers from a pricing stigma, but they know how to make great sounding tube amps. A friend of mine has a 1501 and it's really nice and loud with a touch of tube warmth...you may find it hard to audition these things but I don't think you can go wrong with either amp.
I wouldn't know, although I've listened to and seen the excellent build quality and value of Rogue gear years back, but whenever possible I go out of my way to avoid purchasing ANYTHING made in China regardless of QC or price although I've had a few transgressions on this principle. It is more about supporting jobs and manufacturers' here or with our Northern neighbors. I doubt if this helps you but it made me feel real good and nothing against Jolida so long as it's made here!
I get the "buy local" thing...interestingly, Jolida's founder Michael Allen started a new factory in China (after his falling out with the lawsuit dudes) to provide his workers with much better working conditions and wages to insure high quality...seemingly this worked.
Don't know how much it matters in this case but teh Jolida is older and teh Rogue newer. That might matter even more than with most technology still in the case of the Class D amps used in teh Rogue. The Rogue uses Hypex Class D amp technology, not sure what model, generation or how old the ones used specifically are, but I have a lot of faith in anything that says Rogue on it more so than Jolida in general.
I have listened to both and both are good. I like the Rogue better. IMO/in my system it sounded better, and has a nice phono stage. Plus its American made.
Thanks to all who have responded so far. Regarding other Rogue products, I believe I read that Rogue's Cronos Magnum sounds better than the Sphinx,... that is smoother with a deeper and wider sound stage. However, it is all tubes, needs occasional rebiasing, and nothing can be stacked on it because it has no flat chassis like the Sphinx integrated
If anyone has an opinion about the sound quality of Rogue's Cronus Magnum, please share them with us.
BTW, CM integrated is a about $1000 more than the newer Sphinx with the same phono stage...... Again, many thanks to all who have contributed so far.
Now you're entering into the world of tubes so you'll have to take into consideration the speakers you intend to drive. Do your speakers need SS to get the most out of them or are they tube friendly?
I've heard the 90 watt Cronus Magnum and it is excellent. The new Cronus has the KT120 output tubes, so hopefully someone here can give you an answer.
Cronus Magnum is a very fine tube integrated and sounds fantastic with the right speakers to match.
HAve not heard the Sphinx hybrid yet. Need to get down to my local Rogue dealer and see if he has it. I would expect similar good results but not best performance with the same speakers as CM. CM works best with higher efficiency, higher impedance "easier to drive" speakers and also well with planars, like Magnepan. Sphinx I would expect good results with all speaker types, including smaller modern designs that are less efficient, harder to drive, and attempt to squeeze more low end bass response out of a smaller box and drivers. With planars like MAggies, either might come out on top, not quite as sure, but I would give the edge to CM.
I had a chance to listen to both the Sphinx and Cronus Magnum recently, just a few weeks ago. Visited my local dealer to hear the Sphinx specifically, and while there figured I'd branch out and check out all-tube options as well. We tried a fun exercise - we went through the CD collection and tried to find what we thought would be the lowest-fidelity, most poorly produced and possibly lousiest-sounding CD we could...and we chose a Great White CD from the late '80s. I wanted to hear how it would sound on the CM vs. the Sphinx, to see if an all-tube design would make a difference with a "bad" recording. The rest of the system was an ARC CDP and a pair of Proac Studio 140 MKII speakers, with Nordost ICs and speaker cables. All together, some nice gear.
On the Sphinx, the Great White CD sounded lousy...borderline unlistenable. It was harsh, it was bright, it was strident, it was just not enjoyable. Which is nuts if you think about it - between the Proac, ARC, Nordost cables and Sphinx it was probably $22-23K worth of equipment, and the result wasn't pretty.
On the CM, it sounded worlds better. Dramatically better. Still a poorly produced CD, but the output was just more musical and less fatiguing.
I offer this anecdote not as criticism of the Sphinx - I enjoyed listening to it through the Proacs with other music, and The Cowboy Junkies Trinity Session sounded great through the CD7 into the Sphinx and Proac. But everything sounded better on the CM. It's very possible that was just a matter of system synergy with the Proacs, and through any other speakers the Sphinx would sound better. So take this anecdote for what it's worth. Our test wasn't scientific, just going back and forth with one CD between two amplifiers to see which we liked better. But I did change course and ended up buying an all-tube integrated instead of the Sphinx that I originally went to demo. I didn't get the CM, but only because the dealer had just taken in a mint pre-owned ARC VSi55 with new tubes and the money was similar - if the ARC hadn't just come in, I'd have walked out with the CM.
And side note, I did take the CM home for a night and tested it with my B&W PM1, which are difficult-to-drive speakers, and that was a great combo. So I wouldn't hesitate to pair the CM with speakers that people might otherwise consider best with solid state, depending on your specific room and speakers, of course.
Thanks to Lowrider for the additional comment.
Mapman, I have a pair of Acoustic Zen Adagios. They are 88db efficiency and are 6 ohms. They use a transmission line design, but I think the bass is only about a C+/B-
I drive them with Red Dragon M-500 digital monoblocks which 250RMS each. Also, I have a Bel Canto PRe3 pre-amp line stage. The combo sounds good to very good, but like every other obsessed audiophile, I would like to eke out some additional performance.
Financial concerns have forced me to post a sell classified on AG for the combo separates. Whether the Rogue Sphinx or the CM can deliver more performance is a question up for grabs. I have never used a tube amp or pre-amp with the Adagios, and I may be sacrificing some aspect of performance by dropping to an integrated amp.
Lastly,a CD player will be my only source, after all is said and done, through both Rogue IA's, supposedly have good phono stages. I am looking for the best sound, and easy of operation. The Sphinx offers a chassis you can put a CD on top of; the CM is a only for a rack or side by side installation. Thanks again to all for your advice.
Sunnyjim, I see Rogue specs these amps at 100 wpc/8 ohms. Give Mark a call at Rogue and ask about driving your 6 ohm speaker. I'll bet the Class D Sphinx would not have a problem, but the Cronus has 8 ohm and 4 ohm taps so you'll need some advice.
The guys at Rogue are very cool to talk to.
To Lowrider I may have ask Mark about the CM's ability to drive the Adagios several months ago, but can't recall what he said. I believe he said it was OK. I will have to check back with him
To Bcgator, Thank you very much for the input and information. It was very useful. I would say the consensus seems to lean toward the CM favorably because both bad and master recordings CD's sound better, if not much better.
Now, if I can sell my separates at near my asking price, I can fund a new CM or at least a minty used CM. Most dealers will not entertain an even up trade on new gear because they claim they can't make any money. Of course that is bullshit All to often, they offer a third of what you are asking.... and I can't accept that, nor should anyone else......Many thanks to all
The CM is great, and for my speakers I'll pick the CM over SS every time. However, my friend's shop has a Sphinx hooked up to Kingsound Prince electrostatic panels, and it just struck me as a really sweet combo. In fact it seemed a bit better of a match than the CM that was hooked up previously (the CM got sold).
I wouldn't expect that to be typical; it may be a electrostat thing -- and that being said, the panels aren't really my thing, either, though they do have their strong points. Speaker-to-amp matching does matter; were I in your shoes I'd roll the dice on the CM over the Sphinx.
Also, I have to reinforce that while the CM's (and I assume the Sphinx's) built-in phono stages are good starter or stopgap solutions, they'll increasingly become a bottleneck once you've upgraded your analog rig to say the $1K table/arm/cart level. It's very worthwhile it upgrade to an outboard stage at that point, which of course includes Rogue's own options. The 99 Magnum's built-in tube phono stage is also very good, btw, so I can't lump it in with the other built-ins.
To Mulveling. Thanks for the comment and the advice. I don't anticipate a problem using the CM with the AZ Adagios. I do play it loud, put TAS's review of the CM claimed it has good clout for 90RMS, with tight bass. More than likely the Sphinx may deliver more peak power because of the class D output stage...
Not concerned about the phono because I am not going to invest more money in analog; I currently have a Rega P3-24 with a Dynavector 10X5 high output cartridge which might be sold. Should I get back into analog, it would be with a less expensive TT like a Project Debut with the RED or Blue Ortofon MM cartridge.
I really want to put more money into a new CD player that is not tricked out to accomodate computer audio. So far, I have not found anything in a CD player under $5000. Esoteric and Ayon seem to now dominate the AG marketplace, but I can't go there in price
Class D amps are highly damped usually, a trait that will generally make them sound quite different than many though not all, tube amps.
Which sounds better case by case will be highly variable on many factors including personal preference.
Recording quality is always a big factor.
FWIW, I have my system using Class D amps tuned so that most lesser recordings still sound decent and more than just listenable, and the best recordings shine well beyond that. It does take some tweaking though usually to get to any target desired sound, so a straight out a/b comparison on a dealer system may not tell the whole story. Tube amps in general may be easier on the ears, but if its the amp that is enabling that with lesser recordings, the effects on others may not be as desirable. It all depends, YMMV, all the typical caveats apply.
FWIW, my local dealers system that uses high quality Rogue and ARC tube amplification (also high quality Rowland Class D amps) is one of the references I have used to get my system sounding the way I want using a CLass D amp best suited to get the most out of my particular speakers. So I palce way more value in getting the right combination of components in place and tweaking that from there as needed than I do in banking solely on tube versus SS amplification. I've found the best of each tend to sound more similar than not. THen there are all different flavors, many quite tasty, possible from there, in some cases flavors unique to the specific technology used.
I saw a photo of the innards of the Rogue Sphinx, and it seems to have about 17 parts...personally, I value the part count in my gear...I want these things crammed with little caps and resisters and diodes so I feel I'm getting my money's worth.
the sphinx weighs 25 lbs. compared to the 1501s 32 lbs. the 1501 is upgradable. and anyone serious about listening to vinyl might want to consider an external phono preamp. on board phono amps are usually not too great. jolida has a really nice one.