I have a question regarding the power handling of the Silver 8s. I am using a Emotiva EPA-2 Get 2 amp which is rated 300w/ch for 8ohm and 500w/ch 4ohm. The Silver 8s indicate power handling of up to 200 watts...am I in danger of putting too much power through to them? I've had them now for about 9 months with no issues but certainly don't want to create a problem.
How loud do you play your music? How far is your listening position? Maybe you can get a decibel meter and find out? You are likely only using a few watts with 90 db speakers at a level that won't harm your hearing (below 85 db).
I typically listen to orchestral recordings...my listening position is 6ft from each speaker. The room is about 24x12 with a 15 foot ceiling. When I 'critically' listen it's usually between -25 and -20 on my Emotiva XSP-1 preamp...but I'm not really sure what that means (read many various explanations). I do need to get an SPL meter...the free app I downloaded was all over the place.
Thanks rotarius. This is not a forever listening room...next house hopefully I will get my "man cave" back.
Does anyone have an amplifier recommendation that would surpass the XPA-2 in clarity/resolution? Is it even practical to consider without putting down serious $$? The XPA seemed like a good choice at the time as it had ample power, good reviews, and an even better price tag.
Emotiva ERC-2 CD player, Emotiva XSP-1 Pre. Not sure I'm "lacking" resolution. Just not sure if there is reasonable room for improvement or if I have a good thing going. I love the sound...but you know...always interested in hearing suggestions. Thanks
From what I have read, the Emotiva stuff is good value for money but may not have the most refined sound. With those speakers, I would add some tubes to the mix, start with a tube preamp and go from there.
I'm running Silver 8's with an XPA gen 3 - 2 channel amp, basically same specs. No issues at all, unless you would decide to turn it way up. Very musical and coherent at moderate levels, with great bass, mods and treble at low volumes. Enjoy!
JD, I used to have an all Emotiva system. ERC-1, XPA-3 and for preamp a XDA-1. It was kind of harsh sounding at higher volumes and it didn’t have the best sound stage with Paradigm Signature speakers.
One would think that Emotiva has upped their game since about 2010, but the thing I have against them is that their owner/president is a business first guy instead of being an audio first guy. That’s why they released the UMC-1, which was a disaster as a processor. Many of their new items released have had bugs, quirks, and things that shouldn’t happen. They announce an upcoming product, and then run into repeated delays trying to get it to market. They introduce new lines/products, and then retire them within 2 years. Their UPA amp line. The XPR amp line. The old subwoofer line, cable lines, it goes on and on.
Anyway, I found a sizeable improvement by replacing the Emotiva amp with a Parasound Halo A21. Nicer highs, tighter more accurate bass, and the midrange produces gorgeous sounding vocals. But the XSP-1 will have a lot to say about the sound too.
I wouldn’t worry about the wattage issue you mentioned unless you like it really loud. If you have a smart phone of some type, you should be able to find a sound or decibel meter app which will tell you how loud it is at your seating position. Your speakers are 90 db. That means at 1 meter distance, they will produce a volume of 90 decibels with one watt. At your seating position 6 feet away, one watt of power will generate a volume of about 84 decibels.
To get 3 decibels louder you need to turn up the volume until the system is pumping out double the wattage, to 2 watts, for 87 decibels. Double it again to 4 watts, 90 decibels. 8 watts will produce 93 decibels with your speakers at your seating distance.
So the question is, what decibel level are you listening to? For most people, 90 decibels is pretty loud, even too loud. I prefer to listen in the 70’s range. For you to be over powering your speakers, the volume level at your seating position would be in excess of 110 decibels, run from the room crazy loud.
If you have any buddies with systems, have a listen to compare to yours. Go to audio stores with music you are familiar with and audition other gear. This will give you a better idea about what you’ve got now.
Thanks for the insight 213runnin! I have been looking at the Halo A21 as a possible upgrade to the Emotiva. Glad to hear you're enjoying it. Did you replace the XSP-1 in your system as well?
I tend to agree with you regarding Emotiva's "business first model". It was a great (i.e. Affordable) way for me to get the components I needed but I think upgrades are in order for the future. Definitely want to maximize the Silver 8s.
jdekehoe, I never did have the XSP-1 due to Emotiva’s long delays in getting it to market. I used the XDA-1, which they advertised as a digital preamp when they released it.
I actually sold off the Parasound gear, a P7 as well as the A21, when I changed to Tannoy speakers among other things. But I found that I miss the excellent highs from the A21 that my current Nad amp doesn’t have. That and the precise placement of vocals in the soundstage. I’ll be getting back into the Halo gear, but this time in the black that wasn’t available when I bought them the first time.
I moved to a smaller room with the speaker change, and currently have a Nad integrated, the C375BEE. It has great bang for buck, but I find I'm missing the superior high end detail of the Halo stuff. I remember how the vocal would be precisely set in the middle with some tracks, whereas the Nad approximates it more in a 2-3 foot placement. Odd that I would notice this, but perhaps Parasound has ruined me for cheaper gear!
I'd say Bel Canto or Bryston would be good options from what I've read, though I've not heard any directly.
@jdekehoe, The Parasound A21 will be overkill, A23 will work just fine and you can buy a tube preamp with the money left over. You can also look for a used Belles, Bryston or B&K power amp, good stuff. For preamps, I am partial to 6sn7 based ones. Btw, I listen to classical primarily as well.
@213runnin, I'm glad you mentioned the NAD as I was just looking at some of their amps today. I wish I had a dealer closer to home for auditioning some of the other contenders.
@rotarius, in what way would the A21 be overkill? Higher quality than the speakers? or output? I would love to eventually upgrade to MA gold or platinum series speakers, but that is a ways off. I would however like to get an amp (now) that is "qualified" to drive even the PL 300s with commensurate resolution/detail/etc.
Does anyone have experience with the Bel Cantos? I've read good reviews on stereophile.
jdekehoe, the A21 is overkill because of the required wattage. You keep bringing up resolution and detail, sonic differences in good quality SS amps are far less than differences in preamps and sources. There is a good chance you may not hear any difference between the A23 and A21 with your Emotiva preamp. Tube amps are a different story. Your preamp choice will make or break your system.