From what you describe here, I think this amp would be perfect for you...
I had a home demo of the 590ax last year and was rocking recordings I had not been compelled to listen to in a while. Megadeath, Black Sabbath, etc. it was definitely a warm and round sound and forgiving to bad recordings. The mosfet device class A design will hide (for lack of a better word) the last little details in music but that lends itself to bad recordings and turning it up to rock out, IMO... I loved it for hard rock music in particular.
I did not purchas it because my speakers and my DAC are already a touch warm, so I went for a much more expensive Accuphase Integrated. But the Luxman did exactly what you are asking.
Have you compared L-590AX to fexample McIntosh MA7000? or NAD M3? Or Electrocompaniet amps? I know these amps, and I wonder is L-590AX much more forgiving of bad recordings than these amps? Or is it very little difference? I have never heard class A amps...
I am planning to use L-590AX with Tannoy DC10T. Anyone heard that combo? Will it sound harsh on bad recordings?
Several years ago I replaced my Ayre AX-7e integrated amplifier with the Luxman L-590ax class A integrated amplifier. I was "surprised and shocked" at how much better the Luxman amp was over the Ayre. Of course, there is a huge price different but I felt the sound was much improved.
I am using the Apple MAC Book Pro Computer, a LaCie external hard drive, the Ayre QB-9 DSD DAC and the Sonus Faber Olympica II Speakers. This Class A amplifier drives the SF Olympic II speakers to loud levels in my living room. The Luxman L-590ax is fully balanced and I am using balanced cables from the Ayre QB-9 DSD DAC to the Luxman.
The Luxman amplifier is very heavy and the box is huge (doubled boxed). And, yes, it does get warm to touch but the heat is not a problem. It does need plenty of open air around it.
It is hard for me to describe how it sounds. The music is fuller, with more detail and with much better bass control. I am hearing more things than I did with the Ayre AX-7e amplifier. The mid range is outstanding. I do not understand but it seems classical music sounds better on the Luxman than the Ayre. The music is clearer, more airy and easier to listen to. Overall, the new amplifier sounds excellent in my system. I listen to classical, jazz, blues, country and new age. The Class A amplifier design makes this amplifier sound excellent.
I like the Luxman L-590ax because of its Class A design and that it is fully balanced. I highly recommend the Luxman L-590ax class A integrated amplifier. It sounds wonderful in my system.
Yes. The Luxamn L-590AX integrated amplfiier will sound much better than the McIntosh MA7000 or the MA8000.
I owned the McIntosh 6900 integrated amplifier before my Ayre AX-7e integrated amplifier. The Ayre AX-7e amp sounded much better than the McIntosh MS6900 amplifier. The Lucman AX-590 sounds wonderful with its warm tube sound compared to the McIntosh or the Ayre AX-7e amp.
I suggest you audition the Luxman 590AX so you can hear it.
Thanks alot Hgeifman!
Have you heard both McIntosh 6900 and Luxman L-590AX on the same speakers? Are there a remarkable difference in the sound? Is the L-590 better on bad and harsh recordings? Does it have a smoother or more laidback treble? What about the bass? Is it more punch in the bass with L-590?
Rockpanther: I cannot answer all your questions. In my opinion, based on listening on my system, the Luxman 590ax has a smooth treble and plenty of bass on my Sonus Faber Olympica II Speakers. It is a very musical sounding amplifier and its mid-range is terrific.
I have not heard the McIntosh 6900 and Luxman L-590AX on the same speakers. I compared the Luxman 590ax to the Luxman L-550A II and, in my opinion, felt the 590ax sounded much better and worth the extra cost (for me).
I do not know how the 590ax sounds on harsh or bad recordings. Again, in my opinion, in my system, my 590ax sounds great on the recordings I play. I hope you can audition the Luxman 590ax so that you can hear yourself how it sounds.
As I said above, I like my Luxman L-590ax because of its Class A design, it is fully balanced and I really like how it sounds. In my opinion, the Luxman 590ax is a terrific sounding integrated class a amplifier. If you are having trouble making a decision, please review other comments on the 590ax in AudioGon and look for reviews of the 590ax. I hope this helps.
Luxman makes a great class A product. They tend to be on the the warmer side of neutral, but just a tad bit. Luxman will not rescue a bad recording but so much of todays gear is so sterile and dry that bad recordings hurt your ears. Luxman will always be a part of my system in some form.
Ok. Do you know any amps or speakers that rescues bad recordings?
Thanks for many good answers so far!
Does the adjustable treble and bass works well? Can I play loud even if controls are used?
I still think with system matching the DAC and cables to tastes, you can get this amp to be 'nice' to bad recordings. I found quit warm and forgiving, yet still detailed enough, musical and very enjoyable... You are going to have to hear it yourself to know any more about it....
Call the distributor for a demo.
The Luxman 590ax has a Subsonic Filter, Tone Controls and Only Distortion Negative Feedback (ODNF) that might help with your recordings. See:
A subsonic filter is also easily accessible from the remote control in order to remove unwanted low frequency noise while you are listening to a record. When the stylus hits the groove, you might notice the woofers modulating in and out, even though there is no music playing yet. This is due to the ultra low frequency information (below the music), this unnecessary information places a strain on the amplifier and is best filtered out. A mono switch is also available for both loudspeaker setup as well as mono record playback. Both the Mono & Subsonic filter are accessible from the remote control.
The tone controls might seem like an anachronism in this day and age of minimalism, but they can be remarkably effective in bring to life a less than perfect music collection. We all have music gems in our collection that are sonicly challenging. A lot of the 1980's CDs are quite harsh sounding and the digital glare can be quite fatiguing. Reduce the treble slightly and while the harsh CD is not going to suddenly sound like a reference recording, at least it will now be perfectly listenable. Sit back relax, enjoy the music & forgot about the HiFi. When you want to bypass the tone controls, just engage the Line Straight switch, either from the remote control or from the front panel.
Luxman nowadays use a distortion reduction circuit called Only Distortion Negative Feedback (ODNF). This system works by isolating noise & distortion at the output from the music signal and sparingly applying negative feedback to suppress them. Conventional negative feedback systems can have an adverse effect on the music, introducing phase distortion. "The circuit features such an ultra-wide range, ultra- high slew rate and ultra low distortion that it does not use phase compensation for the music signal amplifying circuits." This new technology also ensures that need for a DC servo circuit is alleviated, again improving sound quality.
Click here for more details:
I agree with Jriggy above that you should call the distributor or dealer for a demo of this amplifier.
Thanks for many helpful answers. I am still unsure if this amp can make bad recordings sounds ok. Does this amp really "soften up" the sharp ss-sounds or harsh cymbals?
And what about tone controls or loudness, does this work on high volumes? Does loudness makes the treble more forward?
Anyone that have this amp can say something about tone controls? Specially reducing the treble?
I thought the tone controls worked very well and did not add 'color' at all. The treble control worked great! Better than the bass control. But bass is so room dependent, so that is probably why it didn't work great in the "+" side for me. I dint personally care for the loudness function.
I have owned the L-590a II for 5 years and it replaced a McIntosh MC402/C46 combo which it handily bettered in my system. The 590a II isn't warm and fuzzy but it also isn't etched like some SS.
I am a litte cunfused here...
Some says this amp sounds warm, other says it's not warm in the sound. So I think it must depend on speakers...
My question is if anyone who has this amp can try to tune the treble control down if the record is harsh, does it soften up/fade away all the harshness??
I am not one to tinker with the tone controls as I don't have the patients for it. That said, I enjoy my setup on all recordings, even the bad ones, if it is good music, I enjoy it; hence owning it for 5 years now.
Sounds good! Is L-590AX much better than many other amps on bad recordings? What about the bass? Is it powerful and punchy?
The 590 is a very even keeled amp, meaning not tipped either way. There is plenty of power, I have no issues with lack of bottom end. That said, you can always find other products that do one thing or the other better. It is too broad of a statement to say it is "much better than many other amps on bad recordings". The only thing I can say is that in my system, I have no issues enjoying all my music, whether the recording is good or not so good.
Does the 590AX generate much heat? I would assume a fair amout, being that it's Class A. Any comments on the phono section? I would be driving Harbeth P3's.
I know this an older thread, and I rarely post, but I bought the L-590AX MKII three months ago, and it is the single best piece of equipment I've ever purchased. I'm 56, and have been pursuing great sound since I was 15.
I've been disappointed more often than not. Not with the Luxman. The best way I can describe it is in terms of photography... It's as if suddenly the exposure, the film, the processing, and the printing were done really well. There is no comparison, and people notice.
After 34 years, my wife has latched on to this piece like none before.
Yes- it does throw off some heat, and needs ventilation.
It is most likely my last amp, and I have had quite a few.
Flowery prose off- PM me with any specific questions.
My only caveat to you is that the Harbeths are pretty inefficient. In a small room I guess it wouldn't matter, but it is something to consider.
I am driving Legacy Focus SE with AMT tweeters, but they are big, efficient speakers.
I have Harbeth C7ES3's powered by a 30 watt Accuphase e-600 and it plays very loud in my room of roughly 10 x 20 feet. It also sounds absolutely amazing as I'm sure the Luxman would.
I had a Luxman L-550 AX for a good while and loved it. I just want to say that the tone controls on the Lux are superbly implemented, as are all of its features. I never bought into the Audiophile ethic that eschews everything but a source selector and a volume control.
These do run hot, make sure its got plenty of breathing room.