Rocket 88R vs v12R???

Does anyone have any experience comparing these two tube amps?

I called Cary and the tech there told me that the voicing is similar and the biggest difference is in the power. he said they are both essentially the same circuit. But I have a hard time believing that 30 watts/channel in triode (88R) vs 50 watts/channel in triode (12R) makes that big a difference. The EL-34 vs KT-88 thing is where the money is.

Any opinions or experiences with the R version or the 88 vs the 12i version?

Hello Brie sorry no direct comparisons with those models.I have spent hours listening to the Cary 12i and the Rocket 88.At the time there were no R versions.The only difference between the v12 and v12i was the input sensitivty.Other than that no difference what so ever.The 88 is similiar in sound to the just depends on your speakers sensitivity.It's been a while since I listened to them but I still think the v12 is a great sounding amp..not to add a great space heater in the winter! Just a little too high maintenance for me.

I would save some money and pick the highest sensitive v12.I can't remeber which one out of the 2 is the most sensitive.But this will allow you to use other preamps besides the Carys.

As far as the Rs sounding better...Well it's just like new and improved washing powder.Every year for 30 years a companys product is new and improved.Just how many times can you improve washing powder! Just something for you to think about.

Good Luck!
I frankly can't understand how anyone could consider the V12 a good sounding amp. I had both a new one, which was burned in only about 50 hours, and I much preferred my ARC VT100 to it. A year later, an audiophile friend with a very revealing system (B&W Signature 800's -- keep in mind Dennis Had uses B&W N802's) borrowed a well-burned in V12 from a local dealer, and it sounded exactly the same -- anemic bass, a thin, piercing sound. The imaging & soundstaging was poorly defined, and the whole sonic picture was a congealed mess when playing complex passages. We both hated it, and frankly couldn't believe how bad an amp it was.
Kevziek ...Like anything else it depends on the speakers and the rest of your equipment.Magnepans are revealing speakers in a good way... B&W is just plain bright! The sound you describe.. is my experience with B&W speakers.It just goes to show equipment synergy will make you are break you.
Gmood.....B&W's are not bright. I have used many pieces of equipment with my 802 Matrix 3 (& I have the superb Northcreek crossovers). Neither are the Signature 800's bright; rather, they are highly-resolving speakers that kick the butt of much of the so-called great speakers out there.
-- Speaking of which, I heard the Sonus Faber Cremona, and, while good, they certainly didn't live up to all the hype, i.e. Sam Tellig, et al, and they most CERTAINLY don't hold a candle to the B&W 800. And I heard them with ARC preamp & Jeff Rowland 112's. ---

I stand by my evaluation of the Cary V12.
Thats great Kevziek I'am glad you love your speakers.I have no favorite speaker but I will say this.No B&W will ever be as resolving of inner detail as a electrostat,ribbon or planar speaker! I don't care what kind of amplifier you use on it.There is no perfect speaker and to get one thing you will give in on something else.

The only way to fairly judge any of this stuff is to bring it home and audition it.Making sure the amplifier can drive the speakers properly.

Brie sorry for getting off track.You will have to give one a try and come to your own conclusions.

I stand by my evaluation of the Cary V12. Great tube amp!