While some prefer the warmer sound of the Aleph's I prefer the dynamics of the X series. For what ever it's worth I liked the look of the Alephs better.
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I likes em both, and own Threshold, but I find I play my Cary amp more. The Pass amps are just about the best in SS. But then thats my opinion. I also realy liked the Aleph series especially the 5 for the same reasons I liked the Pass amps. But the 3 seems a touch purer and has more cajones than the Cary amp.
You makes your choices and then you trade, all hail to Audiogon. This is one expensive hobby.
And for those mis-guided fools that think if I buy this amp, this is the last one I'll ever have to buy, give it 3 months and you'll be out looking for even greater purity.
It ain't a hobby, it's darn near religion.
I agree with the last person posting Aleph over X. The Aleph, to my ears, has no signature whatever. I have heard the Pass X-350 on several occasions and it has a sonic signature. I own a Pass Aleph 4 and have heard most of the Aleph series including Aleph 3, 5 and 1.2. Aleph amps are some of the best amps ever made. Note that the new Pass XA series tries to marry the midrange and top end of the Aleph with the slam, dynamics and bass control of the X series. The Pass XA series currently consists of two amps of $18000 and $28000 respectively. They are much more expensive than the X series amps of equivalent power ratings. Note that the new Pass XA series tries to combine the sonic purity, midrange and top end of the Aleph with the slam, dynamics and bass control of the X series. This represents the return of Pass to manufacture of pure class A amplifiers rather than the Class AB designs of the X series in order to deliver an amp with the level of sonic purity for which the Alephs were known. All of this should give you the sense that the X series did not render the Alephs obsolete. At the used prices for which the Aleph amps can currently be purchased, they are absolutely a steal and one of the great buys in audio today.
Personally I am not that mad about SS, but I use Pass Aleph 0 monos with my Horn speakers and when they do something wrong, plese tell me, never found something...
I am very impressed from that design, they are crystal clear, not dead analytical like so much others, very fast ...... they are RIGHT.
( Rayhall described very well )
A former owner told me, he sold these to replace them with X250, later with X350, he never got the former satisfaction, sold both now and looks for a Pair of 0's again, he always missed the 'wholeness' of the Aleph's .....
I think, with a matched speaker ( output of Aleph ) there is a very good chance for sonic satisfaction .....
( There is much worse out there ....And, I never had one thought about selling them, these will stay ! )
I am an Aleph 0 owner. All I wish to say is that the amp is really wonderful and I have no plan to change it to the X series. In my personal opinion, its purity, warmth, detail and good hi frequency performance are something hard to find in other models. Given its current price in the secondary market, it is surely a good buy.
I've seen pairs of Aleph 2 monos in the market for under $3k several times in the past year or so, and couldn't believe that they weren't snapped up right away. I'll never sell mine: they're suspended from the basement joists under the Parsifal Encores, sending their mellifluous notes up through ribbons of SPM. Aaaaahhhh....