I have owned Pass X250.5 and several Macs, the most recent an MC300. I would say go for the Mac. They are full, and natural sounding. I felt that the Pass was somewhat grainy and electronic sounding.
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I use the 402 for 803S's. Listened to it drive the 803D's and the 802D's - plenty of power for both versions of the 803's and just shy of plenty of power to drive the 802D to its max spl. More importantly, in comparison with a Classe, the 402 sounded a lot better. Listened to the Anthem P2 driving pardigm signatures - wasn't impressed. But not the same speaker.
i have the B&W n803 in my secondary system. it is a different speaker than the 803D, but the required power to get all the drivers fully engaged, according to B&W, is similar and substantial. the pass 350 should have no problem with this, but i would think not the best choice for the tweeters of the 803D. the xpoint5 series would be better.
re: roxy54's comment regarding the x250.5 - on audiogon you mentioned that you were displeased with the sound of this amp, but after you had sold it, you found out that the bias was out of wack. so, upon its return, did you re-audition it fully, or are your comments based on an amp that was not working properly ?! i have never heard anyone associate the xpoint 5 series with "grainy and electronic sounding" unless it is being compared with another amp that well above the x250.5 price range. pls clarify. thanks.
I have used X250.5 with my B&W Nautilus 803. I have never ever heard any hint of grain or electronic qualities in the sound of the Pass amp. I have used it with different preamps, different speaker cables and interconnects. This amplifier has a pure, crystal clear sound, increadible resolution and extension, and is delicate on highs.
It was a great match for the N803.
Roxy, I recently heard my amplfiier with Dynaudio S5.4 and Dali Euphonia MS4 and in both systems it was great.
Something was either seriously wrong with your Pass amplifier, or somewhere else in the system you had an issue and Pass is very transparent, so it just displayed the flaws. I am really surprised by your comments.
Another vote for the PASS X250.5 or X350.5 - I currently have a X250.5 in my System, and it is the best SS Stereo Amplifier that I have owned. I also have had the McIntosh Amp. and B&W Speakers. The current PASS models are wonderful sounding Amplifiers (check-out last month's and this month's PASS reviews in TAS) and reasonably priced when compared to their competitors (Krell Evo., Levinson, Halcro, etc.).