Try the NAD Master Series integrated,if the 325BEE impressed you,this will blow you away!!!!Good prices here on A'gon.Pick up some decent wires(DH Labs,Kimber,etc.)and enjoy.
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i recently bought an arcam alpha 9 on agon for a couple of hundred bucks and i'm really happy with it--rated at 65w/ch, but it roars w/lots of transparency. it's predecessors were a nad 325 (lots of oomph, but somewhat unrefined) and an 85w denon integrated (not much high end detail). i have also auditioned your onkyo 955 but didn't quite grasp the accolades reaped upon it--it was okay, but as you put it, sorta laid back, not dynamic and forward like the arcam or nad.
all that said, i think you'd be well served with an arcam; alternatively you can find used rega or creek in the same price range; any of these will provide a considerable level of refinement, esp. since you don't need a ton of power.
Interesting. Your opinion of the Onkyo is mirroring mine. I thought the "smoothness" I'd read about might tame the horns just a bit. Though these are the smoothest Klipsch I've yet heard. The little NAD seemed to have more "balls" for lack of a better term. My girlfriend liked it better too. I tried an arcam once but received a bad unit and didn't go back. I've considered the Audio Refinement Complete too, based upon reviews. I ive in an area where listening to different amps isn't possible so I rely on the good folks here for their input.
i better grasp where you're coming from. if you're soured on arcam, get a cambridge audio--i see their 65w units (i think the model is 640) for as little as $300 on these pages. very nice, neutral sounding piece--certainly more lively than the onkyo, probably not as forward or ballsy as the nad though a little more refined. it's a real safe pick and won't be too bright for your klipsches.
Yeah, I'll post the results as my ears hear it. The Onkyo is a fine sounding amp. I kind of miss the more lively sound the little NAD provided. Rule of thumb with Klipsch's are to pair a smoother amp with them to tame the horn. Some guys love tubes for that purpose. In this case the Onkyo may have sanded them a little too smooth. Depends on taste I guess. With my electric blues, I prefer that "edge" I guess is the way to put it.
Ok, first impressions on the Cambridge A640 vs the Onkyo A9555. After some extensive listening last night I have the following impressions. The Cambridge provides a more "forward" presentation. Some might call it livelier. The Onkyo is more reserved and a tad smoother in my book. For my listening tastes I like the livelier presentation of the Cambridge. It sounds similar to the NAD C325 BEE I had. Others may prefer that smoother, rounder sound of the Onkyo. Both very nice pieces with different presentations. I listed the Onkyo this am. For my ears, the Cambridge edged the Onkyo in this shoot-off for the music I prefer which is electric blues and classic rock. Build quality on both is very good. The volume control on the Cambridge is a bit touchy but acceptable.
Ok, an update for those interested. The Cambridge was nice, went to a NAD C372 which was over-kill. Settled (for now) on an Audio Analogue Primo Sentatta (sp?). A nice balance of liveliness and smoothness.It does have a "tubelike" touch to it but not as cloaked sounding as some tubes are. It always the snap of the Klipsch's to come through but not dominate the sound. May be a keeper here.