I recommend asking Don Better of Don Better Audio in Cleveland. He sells those products and will stear you in the right direction.
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I did have the very nice opportunity to listen to the CS300X for two hours with Musical Affairs Grand Crescendo speakers.
I feel both Lebens are very nice indeed, no phono stage included, tho the Headphone Jack feature is a REAL plus.
Do sufficient research to decide which is better for you. Post your results, good luck.
Bolero, I don't have experience with Leben, but do with Devore with Silverbacks. I have a 15w shindo apetite, which sounds great, except, it doesn't quite have enough power for my room. I would think that the 600 would be the better bet for for your nines. I have been thinking of going down the road of a shindo auriges or monbrison with a vac phi 200 or something like that. Also agree, Don Better will be a good resource. Good luck.
My feeling is that the value is in the 300...once you get to the 600, you're in a price range where going towards Shindo starts to make sense. Just because your budget goes to $5K, doesn't mean that $5K is what you should spend...IMHO, in these lines, a 300 makes sense around $3K, and an Aurieges-L/Montille makes sense at around $7K.
That being said, the 600 probably has the power you need...these things are never easy!
I have a pair of Devore Nines, and recently owned a Leben CS300. For reference , I do also own a Nait XS and ARC 100 watt amp. That said, I did not find the CS300 had enough power for all types of music. Simple music, yes, it was fine. But I like to rock out occasionally, and the Leben did not have the power for that. I replaced it with a new EL34 amp being imported by the same folks who import Shindo and Leben (Tone Imports?). It is a high quality Chinese made amp by LM Audio. I bought it from Don Better Audio for $1650, plus another $50 for upgraded input tubes. This amp is triode/ultralinear switchable for 15/32 watts, and has plenty of power for the Nines. I upgraded the tubes to KT77's for another $200, and it sounds great! But it was great even before the KT77's. If you Google LM Audio, you can check out the company. I see them as a Chinese Shindo. I have owned a few Shindo pieces, and am VERY impressed the LM Audio amp. You cannot go wrong with this amp. Plus it has remote control! That is important to me. I want to be able to adjust volume from my listening position, because with really nice gear, things just seem to really "click" with the right volume level.
wow i have now alot to thinking of.
1.cs300 good value for money but doesnt have enough power for all kind of music i prefer rock and vocall.
2.cs600 have more power sound good but in his price range i can get almost shindo enter level montille and auriges l,so maybe i can wait to buy here shindo used and send it to israel (i think shindo is adream with devore even john devore said that and performance devore with shindo line) but i dont know if its sound better then cs600 of leben ? someone test this diffrent here ??? its very importent to me because i never hear shindo line in israel no dealer no one have shindo
3.if i will choose shindo is it enough power montille is only 15 w is it sound better then leben cs 600 that have 32 w ??
4.i read here that this montille and auriges isnt have the shindo magic so is it good value for the money ??
thats all for now i hope to get answear to my 4 questions above is it very importent to me to consider
thank alot for you all :-)
I had an Auriges and Montille to start, and then upgraded to a Masseto.
I find my LM amp has plenty of juice to drive the Nines to any level I need, and it does not sound stressed doing it. The Nines are pretty easy to drive. That is one reason I really like them.
Regarding the amp, it is very detailed, transparent, musical, dynamic, rhythmic, and involving. Amazing for $1650.
You can easily rock those speakers with the 300sx. The Shindo are more for vocals, classical and jazz, where timbre and depth is most prized.
I listened to Radiohead's Amnesiac on the Leben and it was amazing. It perfectly reassembled and powered the most difficult tracks on the album. Great bass grip for a tube amp.
Before you make a decision, you should also look at Almarro amps out of Japan and Decware out of Chicago. These tube amps rival the best Shindo and Leben gear, at a fraction of their cost. The Almarro 205 is a steal. I got it for one of my children and it perfectly plays electronica and hip hop.
first thanks alot for all this lovely response .
i really like this forum in audiogon and the people here very kind.
i think of leben cs300x but is it reall jump if i take the shindo comb montille + auriges ?? or its just for classic music is the sounds of shindo sound wow and leben sound good but not wow ? i wanna to get wow in all kind of music lol ? what about cs600 is it give me more musically and vocal then is small brothers cs300 ?
and what about EAR YOSHINO in isreal the dealer sell it with devore and it say that is prefect comb what you think about EAR to compare it to leben or shindo ??
Well, I have to respectfully disagree on an Almarro 205 being able to really drive the Nines for dynamic music. I have owned two 205's, and the larger Almarro single ended amp. The bigger one does drive the Nines decently, but the 205 will suffice only on pretty quiet music. The 205 is a great amp, but it runs out of steam pretty quickly. Or maybe I just like my music louder than most? I listen in the 75-82 db range.
hi to all and to bongofury and dbarger a specially :-).
i talk with somefriend in my country and he never sound the devore nines ,but he have alot of experince with system ,he said to me that the nines if they 91 db it means that they doesnt so high db so maybe cs300 will sound good but for 15w its not so good ,and he said that leben is good amplifer but he think that the best integreted that he hear was ayon triton .
now there is someone in my country that sell ayon triton integreted for 5000$ . i like to know if it will be better comb to my speakers or to go with leben cs300x or 600 ?
i will be glad if someone test the comb with ayon triton and devore and the leben with devore
Bolero32, as I have said earlier, I am using devore silverbacks, which are the same 91 db, and my 15W integrated (shindo) isn't quite up for the job. When I corresponded with Shindo, they recommended Corton Charlamagne (70W) or Montrachet (~40W). I too would be very interested in hearing the Ayon Triton with Devore since it can be run in two different modes and because of all of the positive buzz about Ayon. I think there are different versions of triton (I, II??), not sure the differences. Good luck and let us know how it works if you go that direction.
I am a big fan of Paradigm mini monitors. I bought some for my daughter, married to the small Almarro amp. I also rebuilt a NAD 3200, the last great tube sounding integrated amp they made. Both sound incredible with the speakers. In the Paradigm line, hard to go wrong with the Atoms to S1s.
I did hear the Leben with Gibbon 8s and the new Or96s. I can't speak for Almarro powering the Nines, but I have heard them power Almarro speakers with great effect.
Shinod, IMHO, seems radically overpriced for what you get for sound. I have heard similar results on Luxman tubes (Their 38 is a steal) and Leben's roots come from Luxman.
I see very little need to move from the 300 to the 600. The difference to me, for the music I heard, was very narrow.
I'd be careful pairing the 300x with anything but the most sensitive speakers. There are amps out there that deliver plenty of current along with 15w or so that can deliver results with modestly efficient easy to drive speakers. The 300x IME is not one of them. It'll run out of steam and you lose all sense of dynamics. Great amp with other speakers, sounded nice on Avantguard Nano's for example. If you're unsure whether it'll drive your speakers make sure you try one as if you're in that situation theres a pretty good chance it won't.
"Bolero32, as I have said earlier, I am using devore silverbacks, which are the same 91 db, and my 15W integrated (shindo) isn't quite up for the job."
I am sure whatever you were told by Shindo is a good recommendation. I just wanted to ad something that has not been mentioned. The Nines are not quite as easy to drive as the Silverback's. I had the Nines for a long time, and replaced them with the 0/96's last summer.My 25 watt Corton Charlemagnes drove the Nines fine, and my room is somewhat larger than the OP's. There was a comment about Shindo perhaps not being suited for hard rock. I was listening to Iron Maiden a few weeks ago on my system. I can tell you that IMHO, it was very satisfying. The OP should have some nice choices in his price range. Assuming you are digital only, since you have made no mention of analog. If this is the case, there are some great integrated amps available. The one's that come immediately to mind are Tri of Japan, Audion, and of course all of the above mentioned. That LM Audio 211 amp looks very interesting too. I believe it's a 20 watt Set.
hi again. im must say that i m not mean to hard rock i mean i hear many things but not classic ,alot of simple rock like dire straits and vocall sing like barbara strasied. as to your suggestion im understand that i can get for 2000$ or less the LM AUDIO but im not familar with that company and when i try to sell it in the future in israel no one know it and maybe i cant sell it. and other thing i cant hear it with compare to leben or shindo that i know they goes with john devore to all is hifi show.
i really like to know if it sound better then any leben cs300x or cs 600 or shindo montille+auriges ?
2.i like to know really how the ayon triton integreted sound with devore nines all i know it hsve plenty of power and he is good but is it have the charm and musicall like the shindo or leben ? i can buy it in israel for 5000 $ or maybe to go with leben ???
3.another option to get manley stingary || integreted for 4000$ it haave 8 tubes of el84 ,is someone here hear it with nines ? and how it with compare to leben or shindo and the ayon ??
please if you can answear to me on this 3 question or maybe i need to open new post for that (i must know the different).
thanks alot my friends hope to hear more and more response
and sorry about my english
I haven't heard LM Audio, but my understanding is that they are a less expensive Chinese brand, that is aimed at people who like the Shindo/Leben type of sound but want to spend less money. In the US, they are imported and distributed by the same distributor, who definitely keeps a "house sound" among the gear he represents. Matt at Pitch Perfect Audio, who carries all 3 lines, has stated that as much as he likes the LM products, they are not really comparable to the Leben and Shindo gear, as might be expected given the price difference.
In terms of the Shindo vs. Leben sound - I'd say that Leben is a bit sweeter, and Shindo is a bit more layered and detailed. Shindo is generally a more punchy and dynamic sound than Leben, and is more to my liking - however, both work extremely well with Devore. It's a matter of how much you need in terms of dynamics and volume in your room.
Again, I'd probably shy away from a CS600 - even if it has a bit more power than a Montille, a Montille/Aurieges L is a better sounding combo at a similar price, and I suspect that the lack of power that you might occasionally feel would be offset by the fact that the Shindo combo has more layers to uncover as you listen to your music. And then if funds allow at a future time, you can upgrade to a bigger amp - which is a nice benefit of separates.
Actually, I think my LM Audio amp is very nice for $7k, but it only cost $1650. I really think it has advantages over my old Montille. I love the Montille, but this sounds great also, and has 32 watts per channel! I would not choose a CS300 over this, quite the opposite. I suppose there are those who would disagree, but they have a horse in this race. I strongly suggest anyone looking for a low power tube amp look at these LM Audio amps. They really convey the essence of the music, with a natural tone only good tubes provide. I also find I am a big fan of the KT77 tube.
ok i have few conclusion from all this posts ,tell me if i m wrong?
1.leben cs300x good value for the money but maybe not have enough power to all kind of music (rock for example : like u2, depeche mode, scorpions)
2.cs600 not good value for the money because its in the same price range of shindo montille + auriges
3.LM audio im understand that its sounds great for is money and i dont understand if its even better musically from leben cs300x or 600 and shindo entery level ???
if this almost equall in the quality to leben and shindo enter level (montille+auriges),then maybe i will take LM audio for budget around 3000-4000 $
4.i like to know how the ayon triton sound with devore nines i dont found any posts on this ?
5.what about manley stingary how its sound with devore he have el84 tubes look nice ??
please can u answear to me too all these 4 things ..
its very importent to me to decided what will be the best choices and i must say that LM audio really give me thinking to consider , but im affried that the price so cheaper im wanna be sure that its good sound (i have before few months my cary sli80 integreted and it sound good with the devore but not wow and thin sound like to know if the LM audio is better sound with the my speakers)
Bolero - I have the Manley Stingray and love it driving my speakers (98db, pretty flat 8 ohm load). I took it to a friend's house and tried it with his Wilson WP8s. I didn't think this was a good match, and I have read that the Stingray does better with simpler loads.
I don't know how the Gibbons compare load-wise with the Wilsons (I believe they are both about 91db, the Wilsons are 4 ohm) but if they are similar then I'd say the Stingray may not be the best choice.
Just my opinion, and only very limited experience so take my input for what it's worth.
I just read through all of this and maybe it's me, but I don't understand what kind of sound, or changes in sound, you are looking for.
I am a prior Devore Super 8 and Nine owner. I understand the strengths and opportunities of the line but I don't see what you are trying to accomplish.
Sorry for my ignorance if I missed something.
A few answers:
1)I found that the 300 could power most rock. It is used by Zu and DeVore in demo purposes. I heard it at In Living Stereo in NY and it easily played the rock format.
2) The 600 will have a sweeter tone next to the Shindo. I prefer it over Shindo, which seems to be made for jazz and classical.
3) LM is made in China. There are better alternatives for you, including Decware in the US and Almarro in Japan. You should also look at Luxman. The N100 amp is a steal.
Chinese gear has no resell. Luxman has highest resell, next to McIntosh.
"sebrof hi my friend.
like to know what will be better with my devore nines speakers LM audio or LEBEN CS 600 OR 300? pls explain more i wanna the end point to my question please.
thanks anyway my friend hope to hear from you"
Bolero - Since you mentioned the Stingray and I have heard it on 2 different types of speakers (easy load sounds great, more difficult load not so great) I thought I would mnention.
Sorry but little experience with the Leben and none with the Devores or LM.
Leben sweeter than Shindo- subjective but I'd say a definite no to my ears. Shindo made for Jazz and Classical as opposed to what- made for rock or heavy metal? Weird statement.
DeVore uses Leben? And Shindo and LM.
LM compared to those others- Subjective but lets just say lots of famous "Japanese made" amps are made by LM regardless of the Made in Japan label on the rear. Made in China also includes many, many US brands that say Made in USA.
The real answer is go listen for yourself and if you can't, buy something that you can. Nobody can tell you what to buy and what you will like, even if they like to try.
Luxman, Almarro and Leben are small manufacturers who take pride in their Japanese made product. Likewise, Decware is made in Chicago.
To my ears, Leben had a sweeter midrange and better bass control and grip over the Shindo, which will work better with Bolero's selections. Shindo offers more nuance and depth, something you associate with classical.
I have seen DeVore use Leben gear at electronic shows.
I agree with Bongofury that Leben has a sweeter midrange than Shindo, whereas Shindo lets you hear deeper into the music. I see Leben as more of the "classic" tube sound and Shindo as a master of detail - both are excellent at what they do IMHO.
Two things though -
1) Jonathan has far more experience with this gear than any of the rest of us, especially in the context of listening to Devore speakers, so if he says that he doesn't hear Leben as being more "sweet" sounding, then I would certainly put more value in what he says than it what I say.
2) I don't think that Shindo gear is for classical only, at all. I've seen that type of thing mentioned repeatedly, and I don't think it's accurate. I enjoy the depth of detail that you get with Shindo - that ability to have absolute clarity down to the last detail of a recording - and I do not listen to classical, virtually ever. The special ability that Shindo has with small-scale performances can be enjoyed with anything from pop to classic rock, from jazz to indie rock, etc. A good piece of gear is not dependant on the type of music it's playing to display it's strengths.
Countingbackwards,Which Shindo preamp/amp combination did you hear? I am not questioning your opinion, but can't help be curious. I have little exposure to Leben, so I frankly could not make that call. Nice system, by the way. I have owned VTL amps, Verity Parsifal's, and currently a Shindo preamp. I have heard the Shindo preamp/VTL amp combo, and it was quite good. I would imagine you run your ST-150 in Pentode w/ those P/E's.
Fjn...for sure there's no harm in questioning an opinion, that's what this board is all about. My opinion is really only valid for my experience, and am sure that others have different opinions when hearing the same things.
I've heard Devore speakers with a variety of different amps in the Leben/Devore lineups over the last few years, both at the Montreal audio show and at Coup de Foudre. The Shindo combo they usually have on display at the store (when they can keep them in stock) has been Aurieges/Montille (though I may have heard other combos at other times - when the Shindo wasn't something I was looking at buying, I wasn't paying as much attention to model names, though I do remember listening once to a Giscours preamp), and at the audio show they've tended to bring Leben integrateds with the Devore speakers. So...my experience isn't scientific, as the room is a notable variable to consider.
With the P/E's, I do usually run my amp in tetrode as you mention, but for smaller scale recordings switch it over to triode. When I was comparing the ST150 to the MB125 EL-34 monoblocks in my system, the added power and control of the ST150 was a significant enough improvement that the triode mode had sufficient power for most types of music. But I still use tetrode about 75% of the time.
BTW...nice system that you have there. Do listen to the Leben amps if you get a chance one day, I'd be interested to hear your thoughts in comparison with the Shindo that you're used to.
Countingbackwards- my reply from the other day mysteriously vanished, so I thought I would follow up. Perhaps something I wrote was not approved by the moderator. I did leave my e-mail address, so perhaps that's the reason. I would like to think not, but can't imagine what else it was! I appreciate your response. To be frank, I wanted to know if your opinion was based on hearing the preamp and amp. I have been to CDF a few times. I have no affiliation, but have to mention they are a great bunch. They all seem truly passionate about this stuff.
I've heard those Nines many, many times, with lots of different equipment - all Shindo, Leben, Shindo-VTL (which I've also hear with some Wilson speakers and, of course, my own), and probably others that I don't recall. They're kind of my "go-to" speaker at this point at CDF, as I'm comfortable enough with them that I can get an idea of what gear does when I hear them. But of course I haven't done any strict "comparison tests" with any of this gear - I've just listened for enjoyment.
IMHO, the Nines are capable of an astonishingly high level of detail retrieval in the midrange, but are less refined at the frequency extensions, which are subtly rolled off in order to mask that deficiency. That's a pretty good way to design a speaker like this to be excellent in one area, without really having any audible downsides.
My point with all this...every piece of gear with a more developed, detailed midrange makes these speakers sound better, because those assets will shine right on through the speakers. I would be aiming for increases in midrange detail and texture with every piece of electronics that I buy for Nines (which I came quite close to buying before ultimately going with the Parsifals).
Interesting no one mentioned Harbeth! I've heard Leben and Harbeth, this setup synergies on a different level. Transparent amp with warm speaker equals musical bliss. Plays emotionally sweet with all types of music.
Keep the Shindo with Devore. This makes all your music sound old school. Good for the masses but not for me. Occasional listening to rock'n roll can't be sounding old school and romantic. Go figure. Warmer amp with neutral speaker, that's shindo with Devore. Sounds very natural, but keep the rock and techno genre off your listening sessions.