Also see Cullen Circuits stereo amps. sold direct, saves money. I own Cullen now, but had the PS Audio GCA series
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I thought the NHT Power 5 and Bel Canto S300 all used the same ICE module and both received Stereophile Class "B" recommendation if I remembered correctly. So, it may be a lateral move and may not be much of a step up if any.
I would suggest you look into NuForce (Ref 8.5V2 or 9V2) if you want to step up. I had the Bel Canto Ref 1K for a while until I moved onto NuForce MCH3SE. To my ears, the later is much more transparent, larger and much deeper soundstage, faster, punchier, more resolution and just overall more "real" or "live" sounding. However, the Bel Canto is denser in the midrange but not so much in a more natural way. YMMV.
Thanks Tweak1 and Kenobi for your thoughts.
I have looked at the W4S amps and they are on my short list. I believe the NHT has different ICE modules than the S300 but not 100% sure. From what I have read on AVS the implementation on the NHT is not as good as many of the current ICE module based amps.
I looked at the Nuforce and the there is a pair of 9.02s here for $900.00. Are these the V2s? From my brief reading of a few reviews of the 9.02s was the issue of noise in certain applications. I do not have a FM tuner so that would not be an issue though.
Thanks again, Bill
The NuForce Ref 9V2 should take noise out of the question. No, the 9.02s for $900 is not the Version 2 (V2). It was an earlier model derived from the V1 board.
If you can swing it, I definitely recommend the V2 as I heard them both and am confident the V2 is worth the surcharge. Last saw a pair on Agon for $1500.
That said, the Ref 9.02 @ $900 is a great deal w/ upgraded WBT Nextgen connectors. If you don't like it, you can resell at minimal loss if any. Also, NuForce provides excellent customer service.