Perfect speakers for audio Research Classic 30

I really hope that you all would be fine in this tragic situation, at least in Italy.
I fortunately live in Venice which hasn't been hit so much by coronavirus.
Anyway I've relatives and friends in a lot of northenr Italy cities and every day it is a war bulletin.
So I'm a bit upset to talk so lightly about our futile passion...
I've recently bought a really perfect Classic 30 power amp, ad it's lovely but I think that it is a bit tense in properly driving my Proac D30R, I can perceive its very good qualities but finally it lacks in bass control and in definition.
It's very strange to say (?) but it works a lot better and apparently more easilly with no preamp, I mean with my PS Audio Direct Stream dac directly connected.
What are your suggestions for the ideal partners for the Classic 30?
I've no prejudice towards bookshelf, monitors, floorstanding and so on but I suspect that an easy load, good sensibility, mid sized bookshelf speakers could make perfectly the job.
Please consider that I live in Italy so please don't suggest exotic, local, not exported speakers, thank you very much.
Looking forward for your suggestions...
First, very sorry on what is happening in Italy and prayers for you and your Country. Stay safe.

Are Klipsch Heresy or above models such as Forte easily available for you? They are an easy load. I have never listened to Triangle speakers but recall they are easy to drive and being a French company I would guess widely available in Europe.

Too bad your ProAcs aren’t working, but maybe something in the Studio Series would be a better match with your Classic 30. Been a long time since I’ve looked into ProAcs but I once owned a pair of the Studio floor-standers and recall they were easy to drive with small tube amps over the Response Series. I owned a ARC VT60 at the time and the Response Series didn’t work too well on that amp either.

Best of luck and take care.
Dear adg101,

thank you for your reply, for your solidarity and for your wishes, I really hope that your beloved president would act as fast as possible towards US partial/total lockdown as we are doing in Italy, collecting the first good results yet, I think that it's the only way for US to avoid the contagion on a very large scale...

Heresy and Klipsch  are available in Italy but they are not my cup of tea, they have  a very characterized sound, with mid/mid-highs too forwarded, and they are not so refined as I'm used to.

Actually Proacs in my opinion are not such a difficult load but simply the D30 are a bit "too much" for both the small Classic 30 and my listening room (4,5 x 6,5 mt).

I wouldn't like to downgrade to the studio series, probably the D20 or the D2 would be more suitable...

But I was curious to hear your experiences about your matches with the Classic 30, maybe with some classic american (but not necessarily american...)  speakers like, I don't know... Thiels, Vandersteens, Snells and so on...

Thank you a lot!

Is the Golden Ear brand available there? These would be good because the bass drivers are powered by their own amplifier (within the speaker) leaving only midrange and highs for the ARC CL-30. I'm a former ARC CL-60 owner and love what these amps do! Keep the faith in these trying times and trust in the Lord. 

”beloved president”?  Not by me!
Beyond beloved. Best president ever. Only thing right now standing between us and a fate worse than the worst any virus can do.

The US is way bigger than Italy. Just as in Venice people are saying things like "hasn't been hit much" a whole lot of the US is full of people who think we haven't been hit much. Which in case you don't know I am in Seattle, where last I heard the death count is 95 and climbing, and all within 5 miles of my home.

We are fortunate indeed that our beloved president Trump was quick to close off flights from the source of the China virus, China. He took heat for that but it proved to be the right move. In contrast to what is often reported our beloved president Trump is not in fact a dictator and actually has to work hard to convince the opposition to do what is right. Its a constant battle. He's winning. We are winning.

Are they using hydroxychloroquine in Italy? Several studies now have shown a combination of hydroxycholorquine and azithromycin to eliminate the China virus in 100% of patients within 6 days. Israel is shipping enough to treat 1M and this has enabled our beloved president Trump to expedite release of HCQ from military stockpiles to be used immediately. Our beloved president Trump also got the FDA to approve its use. Unlike in many other countries here we are scared of letting people decide their own treatment and so this huge federal agency was blocking use of this powerful weapon against the China virus until our beloved president Trump stepped in and got it done incredibly fast. What we call Trump Time.

Specific to your amp your experience so far already shows its more than just matching the amp to the speakers. Its also the pre-amp or source to the amp. And the interconnect between them. And the power cords to each of them. Speaker cables. Every single one of these has a very definite impact on the sound you are hearing.

To understand better please see The System here Please read the recent visitors comments. The System was developed over a period of some nearly 30 years work. Work that is ongoing. Never once in that whole time were on-line opinions solicited. Its hard to think of a greater waste of time. Sorry, but after reading this and comparing to others you will start to understand.

The much better approach is to search around and read reviews and comments on any and all components of interest. Pay great attention to detailed descriptions of sound quality. Disregard most other comments. Specifications mean little to nothing. Watts, impedance, hardly any of that stuff matters. Look for what people describe as sounding good.

Then pay attention to what it sounded good with, and try and figure out where the reviewer is coming from. Some reviewers like Michael Fremer for example prefer a super fast hyper articulate hifi sound. Every reviewer has some sort of bias like this. As does every poster on a site like this. Understand this well enough and you will be able to make use of comments from just about anyone.

This is how you narrow it down to what is worth the time and trouble to audition. That is how everything in my system was selected, and its been a very long time now since I have been disappointed. Instead it works so well ... but you can tell from the last comment how well it works.

If you want any help do not hesitate to PM. There is so much BS sniping from people eager to virtue signal they put down their own president, and worse, that I hardly ever come back to a thread. But always happy to help if you have any questions.
Post removed 
“Best president ever”. Tell that to the family’s that have lost loved ones due to his ineptness.  Remember, the virus is a “Democrat hoax” so all you trump worshipers have nothing to worry about.  
Not "Trump worshipers" pretty boy, "Trump respecters". Now go play with your toys.
@stereo5 ,
No point in trying to convince people who drank the Kool-Aid that they made a poor choice.
I would PM John Rutan (Audioconnection). He sells ProAc's and would have good information regarding what they require power wise.


You are right, its impossible to get through to his sheep. Like I said, God forbid their loved ones die from this, but if they do, its on don the con, no one else.    Dweller, your name calling (pretty boy) shows your lack of maturity and empathy.

IMO, this isn't a forum to discuss politics.

So, to the OP, firstly glad to hear that your area of the country is less impacted. 

As to the speakers to audition with your very nice ARC Classic 30 ( I like this amp a lot, as I used to own a D70Mk2 and it has some similarities),
you have a very good local company to go with...Sonus Faber. One of their stand mount speakers would work well...if funds allow...the choice new would be their new Electa Amator 3 or if budget dependent, the new Minima Amator 2...both would sound excellent with your amp.
Might need to add subs, dependent on your room and musical taste, but that could be done later. ( although I suspect you would be very pleased without subs with these two candidates).

Post removed 
OP, too bad Emerald Physics speakers are not readily available to you, but maybe Reference 3A MM De Capos
Have you tried pulling your speakers well out from the front wall (behind the speakers) and sidewalls?  Also look into Machina Dynamic isolation springs. These are magical, especially for tube gear. They are very light so, shipping shouldn't be a big deal. I have them under EVERYTHING


MillerCarbon: +1: Shocked to know that there are MAGAs in the great NW

And yes, those who hate DJT judge him ONLY by what their liberal media and FAR left party spew, instead of actually looking at his record (which BTW includes major efforts to bring down child trafficking, pedophilia, sex for movie roles, MS 13... and that’s just the tip of the iceberg!)

Just look at how Pelosi and Schummer have interjected garbage into YOUR stimulus package (why aren’t ALL liberals rioting in front of their offices and homes???). I HOPE this is the straw that finally breaks the Ostrich’s back (democratic voting block) as to how conned you’ve been.

Im not saying DJT is squeaky clean, but compared to the Dems he’s a freakin saint.

Also, don’t confuse me with being a Rtard either. I’ve been an Independent since John Andersen ran LONG before most of you were born: 1980

THESE 2 parties (at the top, which is above the president) are essentially 2 sides of the same dirty coin and have been almost since the start. See Romney, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, the Bushes...

Why was Abe Lincoln and JFK killed? Both wanted to return us to a gold back dollar instead the worthless fiat money the banksters created which is the Babylonian Debt system we have today. That should tell you something about whose been in charge and who we should be fighting instead of political crap. And guess who pays the governance off?

Eisenhower said in his parting speech "Beware of the military industrial complex!"

Brief history lesson over

Peace Out!


I wish you and your country (I have very fond memories of my travels to Italy) the best and appreciate your sincere respect for our president. He and his excellent task force are working hard and doing their very best for  American citizens. The early travel ban on China was bold and brilliant (not racist, how stupid a charge). I wish Italy had done the same.  +2 millercarbon.


So everyone over 60 who loves our President should not have any problem with giving their life to save the economy and trumps hotels. Let us liberals know how that works out for you. Oh, that’s right, you’ll be dead.  Go for it!

I believe we'll be alive and well and carrying on with our lives. In a few months or so we can look back at this period for retrospective assessment. An opportunity to compare predictions with subsequent outcome.


I'm very sorry to have started a politic conflict, I agree that this is not the right place and time.

@dweller yes, we have Golden Ear brand in Italy even if it's not so common, difficult to hear them, I think that the closest place is in Brescia which is now one of the most hit cities in northern Italy, and it's almost impossible to find them used, anyway it is a good suggestion, high efficiency and a simple impedance module and as you said a very good and powerful power amp to power bass drivers...when all this will be finished I will do my best to audition them, I think that the most suitable model is the Triton One R, as the reference is too expensive for my pockets.

@daveyf  I'm a good expert about Sonus Faber speakers and I used to be a SF collector, I owned almost all the standmount speakers designed by Franco Serblin, from Minima FM2 to Guarneri Homage, passing through Electa Biwiring and Amator mk1, probaly I missed just the Extrema, too expensive and tricky to optimize, and I still own a very beautiful pair of Minima FM2 mk2,  amazing italian clear walnut, they are nice coupled with the Classic 30 but they don't sing and fly...

I think that the current production is largely overpriced and it has completely lost its soul and personality, moreover expecially the Minimas they are really too small, I cannot think to come SO back to small speakers after the Proacs D30...

@gdnrbob I'm sorry but the matter here is not what could be fine for Proacs D30, unfortunately now I know it very well...

What I'm asking is what is fine as speakers for the Classic 30, any other suggestions, better if based on personal experiences?

Thank you very much!

Ok, maybe you were more interested in the politic conflict than in my banal request?

Mario, I’m not sure I know what you mean by "sing and fly" because my GH’s worked amazingly well with my D70mk2. Your Classic 30 isn’t quite as much power, but most likely has similar headroom.
Another option..a pair of Quads..would sound very nice with the Classic 30..and you wouldn’t risk overdriving the speakers.
One of my favorite systems ever included the ARC Classic 30 and Thiel 1.2 speakers. I worked for 2 high end shops and that pairing was magical in a audiophile way and a musical way. I don't remember the source or pre amp, sorry. I had the ARC Classic 60 and Thiel 1.2's and it was also fantastic, but the 30 was better with the 1.2's. 
I have ProAc D30R’s driven by various nice ARC tube amps of roughly the same vintage as your Classic 30. (My amps are VT60, VT50, V70). I run a nice REL subwoofer to augment the low end. Listen to jazz and vocals mostly. The sound is wonderful. Saturated tonality, great sense of space, very organic, but still quick and impactful when needed.

I think a key to making this ARC amp work well with a solid state digital source is a tube linestage to ’round out’ and ’fatten’ the sound profile. I use nice CJ linestages to accomplish this - Premier 16 or ET5. The older CJ’s would do the same. The Classic series (my V70 is a close relative) errs on the side of sharpness and lean bass, while giving you wonderful transparency and sense of space.

Another thought is to look at the input and driver tubes in the Classic 30 - buy some old stock tubes which can play warmer tones and fatter bass than modern Russian tubes typically supplied by ARC (if that is what your amp came with).

If you were to mate ’warmer’ speakers to the Classic 30, I would think about Vandersteens, Spendors, Sonus Fabers, perhaps higher KEFs and Linns.

Good luck and take care.
@ marqmike  it is not the first time that I heard about this pairing, and since the 1.2 are really cheap, although undoubtedly oldish, it could be a good attempt...

@ jjss49 I'm sorry but I've the opposite problem, my D30R in my room and with my Classic 30 (which has half the power of all your amps...) sound too "fat" and thick and bass is not out of control but not so precise and controlled, surely I don't need a subwoofer.

And I've a very good ARC LS25 mk1 but it doesn't better the situation and recently I prefer to run the system with my Ps Audio Directstream dac directly connected to the power amp, the sound is a bit more defined and controlled.

Regarding tubes I've just ordered a couple of RCA Clear Top nos, and I hope that they will produce exactly the opposite effect than to furtherly warm the Cl 30 tonal balance, after that it will be the time of the power tubes, which are probably part of the problem as they are not the original 6550 but two couples of chinese KT88  branded Audio research, probably old and tired, I'm thinking to two matched couples of

- SED Winged C
- TAD 6550 A STR
or what the italian distributor is suggesting me

- Sovtek 6550 WE

Some other suggestions about tubes are obviously welcomed...

Sorry jjss49 for not having been able to explain my problems...


When I read you writing the Classic 30 driving the ProAcs were 'tense' I thought you meant too sizzly and strident, not too bassy and slow.  I misunderstood but no problem.

Given the actual problem you have I would definitely retube the amp first.  I suspect the tubes are old and dulled.  The Classic 30 should NOT sound dull into a high line ProAc!  Suggest you get KT88 instead of 6550 power tubes for more bass control.  I think modern Russian replacement small signal tubes should be fine as they are a little brighter than most older tubes.  Be sure to re-bias the new power tubes upon installation.

Good luck.

It finally dawned on me, Anthony Gallo CL2s. Great bookshelf speakers with an amazing tweeter very amp friendly. Could be magical. I bought them from this closeout advertisement. I barely listened to mine as I came across a pair of SV123 Swan Diva IIs locally which better suited my TV system. But no plans to sell the Classic IIs

Dear  jjss49,

agin sorry for the confusion, I think that the matter is my poor written (and spoken as well...) english.

I think that the problem is not the Proac being high line or lower line, the Studio series is very good as well..., but simply that they probably need more driving capabilities than those of the Cl30.

I owned some years ago a pair of Melody power amps with KT88 but my experience stops there, I've red that in general 6550 are a bit more thin and dry in their sound than the KT88 but I don't know if this is a matter of control or their specific  personality, when the KT88 are more powerful and complete in the lower frequencies, this is the reason why I'm thinking to replace the current, old KT88 with new, good quality 6550.

Moreover the Classic 30 has been designed to work with 6550, not with KT88, although they are somehow compatible...