31 responses Add your response
Ron, we have a/c in hot climates and don't like adding extra heat to a room for the a/c unit to combat. It's 106 today and my house is set for 79 when I get home. I'm toughing it out so far this year with the tube amp.
The plasma tv is really noticeable in the summer as well. In the winter, I can run the tv through the tube amp all day long and don't even notice. Summer time, I am well aware of the heat pouring forth.
I think a quiet room fan obviates any tube amp issues from the heat sensitive among us, and a quiet fan won't disturb the experience any more than hearing Uncle Clem outside with your cousin Betsy screaming from the moonshine still behind the pigs. Merely moving the air around can really mess with the BTUs...swine British!
I live in Antarctica.
My favorite Summer amp is the Krell KSA-250.
Even with all the windows open it keeps my living room a very comfortable 68.4 °F.
On a slightly more serious note: If you have budget, the Odyssey Stratos have about 30% more juice than the Kartagos, which your Matrix 800s will gleefully put to good use.
The Luminance Audio KST-150. It is a high speed, high bandwidth mosfet amp. It runs very efficient like a digital amp and is cool to the touch, but its sound will blow any digital amp out of the water.
In fact you will probably not want to put your Pass amp back in once hearing it, a true giant killer. It needs a week of break-in, more so than the typical new amp.
I would suggest any of the upper-tier Parasound amps from the 2-channel HCA series: HCA-3500, HCA-2200II, HCA-1500 (in descending order of wattage/power). Between 10 and 15 years old; should range in price, used, from ~$800 (HCA-3500) to ~$350 (HCA-1500). They're all rated for 4 ohms; the 2200II is rated down to 2 ohms. The 3500 and 2200II are probably the ones you want for those speakers.
I totally share your need. Have a pair of XA160.5's. Prior to acquiring these 131lb. marvels, I modified the %$^# out of a Hafler 500. I don't mind and will share info on the many multiple mods if requested, but the short of it is the 500 is a pretty cool amp - literally and figuratively. If one can be found that's been modified by John Hillig @ Musical Concepts, it'll provide the needed dividends. Parallel to my Pass, its soundstage is as wide and deep. One thing that continues to be so engaging is the height of soundstage with the 500. This is one attribute not shared with the XA 160.5 - which is not to say I am anywhere dissatisfied with it. Jus' sayin....