Believe it or not, the amp that I have found that works the best on the maggies of all sorts is the adcom GFA-555. It actually works better than some of the mega buck amps.
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Many years ago, I had used the Crown 300 with the 1-D speakers. As the years have passed I have had many other speakers from Magnepan..1.6, 3.6 and the 20. I have had good results from VAC, Classe, Audio Research and others with these Magnepans. I did use a Adcom 5800 for a time with the 20's while I was selling and buying something else. ..and the Adcom did a very good job with the Maggies. For a very reasonable price..the 5800 might be something to look at.
GENO I HAVE OWNED SEVERAL TYMPANI'S OVER THE YEARS AND JUST RECENTLY SOLD MY LAST PAIR I OWNED LAST WEEK ON AUDIOGON. THE TYMPANI IS A 4 OHM SPEAKER AND IS SENSITIVE TO HEADROOM IN AMPLIFIERS. THE PROBLEM WITH THE LOWER POWERED AMPS TO MATCH THE TYMPANI IS HEADROOM. BUY AN AMP WITH HIGHER POWER THAN THE 200 WATT RATING THE TYMPANI HAS AND ADJUST THE OUTPUT LEVEL OF THE AMP. I WAS USING A CARVER TFM-55 WITH A FRONT PANEL OUTPUT ADJUSTMENT THAT GAVE ME GREAT MATCHING FOR THE TYMPANI. THEY HAVE A FREQUENCY RESPONSE OF 35HZ TO 20KHZ SO YOUR TRANSIENTS WON'T THROW YOUR AMP INTO A HIGH GAIN OUTPUT LIKE A 30KHZ OR 40KHZ TRANSIENT WOULD. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE 2 AMP FUSE IN PLACE AND DON'T USE ANYTHING SMALLER THAN 14 GAUGE WIRE. YOU ALSO DID NOT MENTION WHETHER YOU ARE BIAMPING WHICH THE TYMPANI CAN DO. THIS WOULD CHANGE YOUR CONFIGURATION BUT WOULD GREATLY IMPROVE YOUR DEFINITION AND DYNAMIC RANGE. E-MAIL ME DIRECT IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO GO OVER MY EXPERIENCES WITH THE 1-D'S I OWNED. [email protected]
The biggest single factor I have seen with Magnapans is a "thirst" for power. I would agree that headroom is more important than RMS power to a point. As I recall the load presented by this speaker is fairly resistive so amps are not as big a concern. These speakers are less sensitive to bright vs laid back sounding amps. I wouldn't consider anything rated at less than 200WPC at 8 ohms and look for more power if you can afford it.