Musical amp/pre/integrated for Maggies 1.6Qr

I just got a pair of Maggies 1.6 with upgraded Cross Over.
Now I am using it with a "better than nothing" NAD C740 receiver.

I am looking for amp that give me a very musical (not hi definition) i.e. tube like amp for probably sub 1.5K used.
I listen to a lot of female vocal music and some Jazz and classical.

I switch from 300B tube SET amp so try to keep the character from the SET on my Maggies. Is it possible to do that?

For the amp, Plimius 8200 integrated comes into my mind.

Any other good amp out there? I know that it's been accepted that Maggies needs lot of power, but I do not listen very lound (less than 100dB.) I wonder if I do really need that much power for the amp. As for now the volume on NAD C740 (35w @ 8 Ohms) never passs the 12 O'clock position yet.

As for class A amp, how much power maggies need? Is 30-50W class A amp good enough for 1.6s?

Thanks a lot,


PS my CD player right now is CAL IkonII
I also have AES AE-3 tube preamp that could go with power amp, but prefer the whole integrated if possible.
For what it's worth, I'm using a Plinius 8200 integrated on my 3.5's and am very happy. Realizing that the 1.6's are less of a current hog, nevertheless this may prove an option for you despite the lack of tubes. Also, perhaps Jolida products might be an option for you? Tube integrateds, I've heard good things from friends but the only time I heard one driving 1.6's they were using a very low power model. Have also heard a few 1.6 owners satisfied with Atma-Sphere, if your budget allows. The friend I bought my 3.5's from now has 3.6's with VTL mono's and love them, also if your budget allows. Have also heard good things about Monarchy Audio's monoblocks.

A thought to consider (you may have already thought of this) is not only the known amperage requirements of the Maggies, but also my observation that both the 1.6's and the 3.5's really don't offer their best resolution until they reach a certain volume level. Not necessarily a function of upstream as much as inherent to Maggies, at least to my ears.

Good luck,


I have never owned Maggies, but auditioned them on many occasion, and have always been impressed. My most recent experience might be very helpful.

I was listening to a pair of 3.6s driven by a pair of the VTL Wotan monoblocks, with an Ayre CD player. There was my brother and a few other people in the room, and all agreed it was a magnificent sound. Since it had attracted quite a crowd one of the managers comes in with another amp, "just" a solid state stereo amp, and asks us to give him a minute to hook it up. He did so, and everybody's jaws dropped, there was such an improvement. That's saying something since at least a couple of us are tube fans.

The amp was the BEL 1001. I have no other experience with this amp, and understand it is "only" 50 watts per side, but it was marvelous with the 3.6s. No, I don't own one or sell them, not being in the business. Just thought you might want to know what others have heard.

Best of luck.

I have the 1.6's and the 3.3's .I find that using a powermaster 1000 and bi-amping is the ticket.This amp when used to bi-amp will make either one sing and sing well.Good Luck,audiobob
Definately McIntosh IMHO. The most warm and musical with no clinical definition (fault for some people) and I love them. May be hard to get for under 1.5k however. Maggies and McIntosh are magical (several Audiogoners have this combo if you check archives and they love it). Otherwise, for tubes, check out Rogue - impressive tube gear for the money and also American made if that makes a difference.
I liked the Mcintosh 6500 and the 6900. i owned the 6500 for about 1 year. Very nice but not enough power for my 4 way inefficient speakers. The Classe and Plinius integrated amps are also very nice.
Go with the story about the BEL 1001...its the specs. I know, 'specs don't matter, its the sound'. That is what you say when your amp does not have the specs but you like the sound of the system. You are a 'connoisseur of coloration'. You want warm, sweet, laid back, etc., etc.

But, if you want to hear what is on the CD, the good and the bad, then select good sounding CD's, go for the specs.
THD 10k ohm / Damping Factor >20

You CAN find them in tubes, but it probabaly will not be the famous brands. Rogue meets the specs and is affordable. Or solid state, ATI, Jeff Rowlands, Hafler DH 200, or DH 220, Muse 60, and of course the BEL 1001.

But you have to retrain your ears for 'true to the original'. When you can hear it, then your reference becomes your recall of the sound of live instruments. Its a whole different path for audio.
I owned the Proceed amp 2 for a couple of years with my 1.6's, and then bought the McIntosh MA6450. Both pieces were good. I sold the MAC MA6450 and bought the McIntosh MA-6500 and McIntosh CD player. My 1.6's never sounded better. I'm keeping all these pieces!!
I love what the McIntosh units do for Maggies, great sound, warmth, resolution, bass, truly a match made in heaven!

Both the MA6900 & MA6500 have plenty of power, I have a big room and listen loud (sometimes). The MAC never runs out of steam and is always crystal clear.

Hope this helps, Happy listening,
Bennett (hififile)
Being a Maggie with a readily accessable x-over, you have the option to actively bi-amp. Magnepan will even help you if you talk nice to them. Get a Marchand deluxe electronic 2-way x-over (~$400 US) with the frequency module Magnepan recommends (probably in the 300-500 hz range). Then bypass the 1.6's internal x-over so that the amps are hooked directly to the "ribbons". You can now pick you amps. Solid state I can highly recommend (2)Forte 4's for about $500-600 each, very smooth and can readily control the bass panel. A single Citation 7.1, 4 channel amp is also a good pick at ~$800. Just as smooth as the Forte but a little less open. For tubes,(2) Rogue 60's would be great but a little on the high side price wise. Whatever amps you choose, my experience is to keep the amps the same.

Another option is to get a good sub with a GOOD built in electronic x-over (like a Velodyne FSR-12..$500). This will increase system extension, tighten the bass and relieve the Maggie's bass panel and the main amp of significant bass duties. This can really open up your system and make those current starved tube amps sing.
I used to have the same Maggies and did many tests with few amplifiers including at that time the Classé CA-400. I finally chose the SimAudio W-5. The match was outstanding !
Highly recommended for the price.
The better amp. than Plinius is BVaudio.
Take a look at
They offer very interesting stereo components.