I had a Pass 350.8 it was a wonderful made amp and sounded great I'm sure the Pass 250.8 is another great amp.The service is great if it ever breaks which is almost never,Hegel do you have to send it to Sweden for service??
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Owned the X250.8 and stumbled across an H4SE, so I bought it. I sold the Pass. Hegel was far more authoritative in my system, wider and deeper soundstage, more transparent and still maintained a slight warmth like the Pass. I thought the H4SE was better in almost all areas, hands down.
Hegel's big amps are the industry's best kept secret in my opinion. They are usually found second-hand with deep discounts. That may change if more people hear them, but I absolutely loved the H4SE.
You are looking at 3 outstanding products.... I would recommend 1 other if you would like a different take on how they handle music.
Ampzilla 2000 MkII mono blocks, they are about $10,000 new.
Thanks for all the great feedback. So many amazing sounding SS amp choices.
I ended up going with MX-R Twenty (and going seriously over-budget) for a few reasons:
-- I've had a couple of Ayre amps before and like the Ayre "house sound", so it was a known quantity
-- More important for the moment, the MX-R fit in the cabinet/space I have right now, and the Pass, Hegel etc are so much bigger I would have had a serious challenge with placement and possibly heat.
Eventually I may well still try those just for comparison sake.
I have the Ayre in my system since yesterday and they really do sound absolutely incredible. Everything I liked about the AX-5 and AX-7e, but "more". More punch, more speed, tighter, lower bass, and all the other nice sonic qualities Ayre brings to the table. And they're a beautiful piece of equipment in a relatively small package comparatively.