Plinius SA-250 or Mark Levinson/Krell/Mc

I'm about to place my dollar on a new Plinius SA-250 MKIV and now having a second thought. I'm planning to upgrade my speaker to B&W 802. Is Plinius in the same league as Mark Levinson/Krell or McIntosh? Will I be getting the same sonic quality/sound stage as the big league equipment? Should I save my money and go for a used ML/Krell or Mac instead? Please help.
Respectfully Patrick, you need to go out and listen to the amps you've mentioned, and make your choice based on music quality/character and not on any sort of implied "pedigree" or cost of component. I have a $5K (MSRP) McCormack DNA-2DX and think it sounds much better than the more expensive Levinson 331, or Krell FPB 200, and the McCormack does not have the "status" of these other amps. I haven't heard the Plinius, but from what I've read it is excellent in all respects. Just my opinion, but it worked for me. PS: I now consider the McCormack to be a "status" amp. Good Hunting. Craig.
I think the ? should be, Is the Krell or ML in the same league as the big Plinius. I've heard some awesome Demo's
before but never anything like the Plinius and Pipedreams
demo at the 2001 CES . The SA250's and CD LAD (preamp) were the most transparent amp and preamp combo that I have ever
heard and I am considering them myself. Good Luck----------
The Hub
I have not heard the SA-250 but I used to owned a SA-100 Mk III. It did not sound nearly as good as a Levinson 334 on my B&W 802's. The Levinson was better in all respects - especially bass. However, it is possible that the SA-250 may sound better than the SA-100, you should listen to the options for yourself.
I just heard the Edge NL amp and understand why TAS said such good things about them. They are well worth the extra outlay. Does not seem to do anything wrong.It sounds to pure to be solid state. Check
Have heard both amps as well as the Pass X350 / X600's and a pair of Plinius 250's as well as Sierra Denali all paired with Montana WAS's 54000.00 speakers. Your room and wires will make more of a diffrence in how these players sound than anyone factor by itself (This amp vs that amp). I like the Plinius's full tube like sound. Its sweet when wired to their best.
The Plinius SA-250 is an amp built to do a particular job, that is drive and flesh out a difficult speaker. For example the Plinius sounds just wonderful in combination with the big Thiel speakers. But I have also heard the Plinius SA-100 beat the SA-250 on "easier" speakers and with my Martin Logans the SA-250 sounded awful - overweight, coloured and slow. This is not an amp I would buy unheard. To use an analogy, the SA-250 is like a big V8. If the car needs a V8 to really move it, then a V8 is needed. But it ain't the right thing to throw into a mid-engine sports car. Sure it will go fast and even be exhilerating but it will be tiresome to drive. Sorry, but this is the best I can do to explain what I have heard. Now the 802 is a "car" that needs a "V8". I have heard this combination and it sounded pretty good to me, but the combination of SA-250 and Thiel 3.6 sounded even better. Hope this helps.

Just as others have suggested, the only way to get an accurate reading on this is to bring each of the contemplated units INTO your listening room and use it driven by your electronics and driving your speakers. Specs, opinions, cult status, any of that stuff is meaningless for your purposes. My local dealer will allow auditions; there are many better shops that will do the same. Remember, you have to live with this critter. Take your time. It's a bit tedious, but will pay dividends over the long haul. Unless of course you're one of the component-of-the-month club. Me, I like to find what I like and stay with it. YMMV.

(Hey, Redkiwi... you utter blasphemy, man. A New Zealander criticizing Plinius? The horror, the horror! ;>) Plinius is great stuff, but as you point out it doesn't work in every situation.
One of the things you should consider is to get a loaner from this dealer and try a home demo. most good dealers today,especially with expensive gear should be able to lend you a loaner for a weekend.If they refuse move on to another dealer. If its private party ask for a home demo also! Good luck