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I don't know about the Quad speakers but I did get an e-mail a few months back from a Maggie 1.6 owner.
He was wondering if I could give any advice on a pair of used Apogee Duetta Signatures he had found for sale and wanted as a replacement for his Maggies.
We exchanged a few e-mails and he did buy the Apogees...He did tell me that he was using the DK Design integrated and that it sounded very good with the Duetta Sig's...with plenty of drive power also.
Not much help,
IMHO, if you really want more dynamics than you can get out of a D400 you need to get new speakers, not new electronics. Lack of dynamics is inherrent in the design of the quads.
Now, if you really value midrange presense and body, as you say you do, you're not going to find it in any SS amps I have ever heard, with or without tube preamps, with my Quad 63's.
Frankly its hard to imagine anyone who cares enuf about the quality of sound reproduction to spend the loot to get Quad 989's to then want to use SS integrateds, of any quality level. But then, as Viridan implies, I doubt that is why you posted in the first place.
I'm going to disagree with Newbee. The Quads have outstanding dynamics. I've never heard a speaker that betters the Quad's ability to differentiate the various levels of loudness between very soft and very loud. What they don't do is go very, very loud and beyond. Also, why the slam on solid state integrateds? As the owner of such a beast I take offense. Not a lot of offense, but offense none the same. True, SS amps won't have the midrange papability that a good tube amp can possess, but then again those tube amps won't provide the bass slam that the SS amps deliver. Based upon what others have described, the hybrid DK may be just the ticket for those British electrostats.
To shill or not to shill, that is the question.
Onhwy61, I agree with you if you are using the term dynamics to mean "resolution". When I speak of a lack of dynamics with the Quads, what I'm referring to is a sense of compression, not its ability to differentiate between the gradiations between the softest and the loudest levels. With both my Quads and my dynamic speakers, in my room, with several different amps, when you compare the level of the softest sounds with the loudest sounds on music played at moderately loud levels, with the softest level being the same for both speakers, the dynamic speakers will always be slightly louder on the peaks. This is most apparent on loud large scale music. The Quad excels on lower volume levels where the dynamic speakers seem to have no life or ability to soundstage (I'm not speaking of my new Tylers however, which seems to be somewhat of an exception).
Sorry if I stepped on your toes re your SS integrated. I'm a tube-o-phile of long standing (never owned tube amps though until I got my Quads). The SS stuff I heard over my Quads, including some Threshold SA series amps with ARC tubes, although excellent, never made the Quads sing in the mid-range which is very important to me - as I indicated, thats why I got the Quads.....
Regarding your last sentence, since posting I found this same post on AA wherein the original poster has listed his system which includes an ARC Reference Pre-amp as well. He describes the sonic's as including warmth and lacking holography. He does not note a difficiency in dynamic's.
I would suggest to him that if he isn't getting holography its more likely a set up problem or an (unknown as yet) need for tube amplification, which would open up that mid range and high end, to go along with the rest of that great stuff that he has. FWIW it took me almost 6 months to fine tune my Quad/room/system setup.
I really doubt that he is a shill, even though this is his first post. I think he has a sonic problem with his system as set up and is looking for an easy solution. I just don't think these integrateds are his solution (with all due respect to your sensitivities).
Whoaa... Like a friend of mine used to say, "I feel like I just stepped in sumthin". I dont post very often, as I have a very busy work life and three kids, but shill? Shilling what?
Regarding tubes or nothing attitude. I respecfully submit that it really isn't on point. Newbee is evidently willing to make different sacrifices than I am. As I explained in my post, I dont really want to go to a tube output stage. Been there, done that, and I have decided to make different choices. I have been in this hobby since 1976 (when I bought my first ARC amp and preamp and MGII's), so I do not have to be told that silicon doesnt sound like glass.
Regarding it being an integrated, I do believe that at this juncture there is no reason why you cannot get sound that is just as excellent from one box as from two. I would evidence the EAR/Yoshino integrated that I had spent 10 satisfying years with.
So my question still stands. But please, offer experience or informed opinion. Please no presumption and no lectures--life is too short. Thanks for your replies, sogood and onhwy61.
Atkinsonrr, FWIW, preceeding your post there have been a succession of posts by folks who had never posted on Audiogon who yearned to tell the folks here about how great an amp the DK is. Just nice generous folks who looked up the site and volunteered this information. Unfortunately, many cynical folks here thought these folks might have a financial interest in the success of this amp and they responded accordingly.
Then the nature of the posts changed, instead of talking about the benefits of the amp they posed questions about its use (what kind of ancillaries to use with it, or for comparisons to other well known amps). Again most of these posters were new members of AA or very recent. Again those cynics took over and suggested that these posters probably had a financial interest in the amp and just wanted to get its name in lights, so to speak. The latest post of this nature occurred yesterday. Then along came Atkinsonnrr and the rest is history. Clearly you are not a shill. You just had bad timing.
I, for one, regret having bothered to share with you my feelings about the use of a speaker I currently own and used for 5 years. Had I known the depth of your experience, as you have now recounted, I certainly would not have bothered. And you are absolutly correct, we do have totally different sonic priorities, and your intitled to your's without my further editoralizing on them.
Good luck in your quest for a SS integrated amp that gives you what you are looking for.
I haven't heard your speakers, but I have heard both integrateds. Both are excellent! The Jungson may be the best value going at $1500, but the DK, which is twice the price, is clearly better. It's clearer, more dynamic, and it does have that tube magic. You can also tune the sound with different tubes. This is not to short change the Jungson in any way, as it's very very good. Both amps offer great value for the dollar.
Thanks for the explanation re: the weird reception. Makes me wonder if perhaps I am being taken in by the hype that you guys are reacting to. I am somewhat at the mercy of boards like this and reviews (such as they are worth) because I live in Alaska with virtually no dealers and very few like-minded audiophiles to provide actual listening opportunities. Another choice on my short list (again with criteria of integrated and SS output) is the McIntosh 6900. I have heard others with e-stats like the amp, and I always thought the autoformers may have some advantage with this type of speaker. Maybe I will pursue that direction. At least if it doesnt work out, the resale value (buying used) will hold up!
I agree with Newbee on his original assessment that the dynamics issue probably lies with the Quad's, not the amplifier. The Quad's are exceptional speakers; however, their few deficiencies are well docuemented. Limited dynamics, as most people define the term, is one of these deficiencies.
I only bring this up because you may be starting down a road that will leave you broke and unhappy. It may be better to enjoy the Quad's for what they are and what they do well, rather than try to make them something that they're not.
That said, if this is really something you want to pursue, and dynamics is your issue, you may want to stay with a pure solid state design. I suggest auditioning the Mark Levinson No. 383 and Jeff Rowland Concerto. I owned Quad's for many years, and always used them with tube gear; however, I have heard Quad's through both of these integrateds, and the matches worked well.
I'm with "Newbee". I'm one of those awful tube guys. Then I always get a kick out of thread starters whom tell you "how" to respond in a thread.--Remember guys threads are for opinions//and we all got one. Jeez, just read 'em and sort them out in your mind.--- Otherwise just buy and try expand your horizons with first-hand input of your own. I have my water-shield in place.