Review: Crown International XLS1500 Amplifier
Well I decided to give this amp a try. I have previously owned a PS Audio Trio C100 integrated amp which is also class D (ice modules) and for the money thought it was amazing, not a Krell FPB amazing but it had decent power even at 4 ohms and sounded defined but not aggressive and with a decent image.
I was most recently running a Jolida 1501rc, an older version and was pretty happy. The Jolida is very forgiving and images well, and generally has enough power for my application, I don't listen to music at any distorted level what is the point? I have had the crown XLS1500 for a day and first impressions are positive especially for the price. I paid $359 shipped, the MSRP is $699 so not too bad I guess. The Crown is a pro amp and is class D just like the PS Audio but it uses a chip that was designed by Texas Instuments. The XLS1500 is stable into 2 ohms and rated at 300 watts at 8 ohms. Here is the catch, the input voltage for full gain is around 2.5 volts which is pretty high. So if you are using a normal Hifi preamp you may not have the voltage required to achieve the gain you desire, this is why I choose a PS Audio P-200 gain cell preamp it has lots of volts of output available and balanced output.
I still obviously need to do a good amount of critical listening and level adjustment before I make any claims of delight, but early session today seems to point to excellent bass control, a very nice midrange, and decent upper region. The treble is more forward than the Jolida 1501rc but there is also excellent low level detail. Piano notes sounded right, and image seems good left to right and in height but nothing special in depth. More to come soon. The reason I bought the amp was the power, load stability, price and three year warranty. I will focus on string instruments and voices in the next update.
PS Audio Trio P200
Spitfire HD DAC