Sloppy, muted bass response on Hegel h190

 Hi, I have a Hegel h190 integrated, a pair of Kef  104/2's from 1985 that have been rebuilt but I don't know whem, the speakers have new donuts and new silver Kef tweeter.  I mostly use the sonus connect.   Also I have a 15-year-old Sony sacd disc player. I'm getting low, sloppy bass when I play either cd or wifi.  This is the second amp.  The first one exhibited same issue.  Same amps.  New.

I only have one set of speakers.  I am thinking perhaps a capacitor in Kefs?  This amp should have solid punchy bass, but it is not there.  Speaker cables are blue jean 10 ga banana plugs.  IC are blue jean also.  I am at a loss. I heard the demo Hegel played on these components and it was fabulous.

any thoughts?  I hate to sell everything and start over, but I am at that point.
thank you

Take your Amplifier to an Audiophile store in your area to audition it with whatever brand loudspeakers they feature to begin the process of elimination.

At a minimum you can regain a smile on your face if you audition it on some good loudspeakers with Bela Fleck or Marcus Miller as source material and it performs well.

From there you can make note of the other pieces in that setup to begin your plan to acquire the associated gear over time.

You also build a great relationship with the salesman who will inform you when used gear at discount prices comes into the store.
Hegel manufactures all their products in China.
Hegel does not make mention of manufacture overseas. Hegel presents itself as a company steeped in Norwegian tradition.
Hegel writes on the back of all their products “Hegel, Oslo, Norway”.
Most high end audio products reserve this space to put where the item was manufactured.
My JBL 4367 loudspeakers say manufactured in Mexico.

The Hegel H590 has a list of 13.500 dollars. It is made in China.
If you have done this with two amps already it’s very likely that it’s the speakers. To give it a third test perhaps purchase a high watt mid fi amp from a big box store try it and return it? That should assure you it’s the speakers not the amp if the bass is the main problem. 

The only other thing I can think of is the high dampening on the Hegel somehow not matching the speakers profile. What was the other new amp? 

Hegel h190 has great bass normally. And it’s a super flexible amp that gives you a foundation to try many different types of speakers. 

In terms of things to check - the capacitors could be an issue, the crossover or the foams around the speaker. Is there any sign of rust or degradation at the speakers posts or in the transducers? These are highly regarded speakers so perhaps there are vintage kef specialists who can help. For what it’s worth I have a Hegel with rebuilt vintage tannoy hpds and its a great match. But they have a new cabibet, new foams etc. 

Kerp us posted. 
d2girls, and the point is? And how does that contribute to the conversation?
cut the problem in half.

Try another amplifier. ANY amplifier, surround sound receiver, 1978 Sony 30 watt integrated, anything at does not matter.

The dividing line in the halves.... is the speaker/cable pairing vs the source/cable/amp pairing.

The perceived result will tell you which half of the equation contains the problem.

10g speaker cable is usually a bad fit anywhere, btw....
Make sure your speakers are not wired out of phase (from amp to speaker: + TO + AND - TO -).
Most likely it’s those 35 year old KEF’s. Like anything else speakers don’t last forever!
The Sonos Dacs are not very good, you won't get outstanding results out of it.  Get a Bluesound or Auralic Aeries.   
Have you tried re-positioning your speakers? pull them away from the wall more
The traits you're hearing are definitely not those of the Hegel H190. The bass and grip on the H190 is fantastic. Something else is definitely not right. I'm leaning towards the KEF, but there could be other issues at play. 

d2girls, your attempts at Hegel bashing on multiple threads are getting very old. Your comments have nothing to do with the original post.
Not out of phase.  Going to ask stereo shop if I can bring in and hook up to Aerials.  Both speakers sound the same, not one or the other.  I use coax into amp, so using onboard dac.
Ahhh, well based on this review:

I could see you getting that. Before you go nuts, try the reverse speaker test. Put 1 or both speakers at your listening location, then walk around possible speaker locations until you hear the best bass.

Then, of course, reverse.
Another question. Is this the first full range speaker you have in the room?

If so, that may be the issue. Talk to GIK Acoustics or Michael Green.


Try wiring one speaker out-of-phase. You state speakers were rebuilt so maybe the tech put one together incorrectly (hey, we're only human).
Use a flashlight or 9V battery to test phase. The woofer should move the same direction for both speakers.
It's NOT the Hegel. Hegel amps are fantastic.
The speaker placement is measured and exact.  The speaker cables are correct and tested.  


I listen to my Hegel H90 thru my Sonos Connect (old Z90 model I believe) into my 30 year old Cornwall ii’s. My sources are vinyl and Spotify. Sounds so sweet to my ears. 
I knew the Hegel was manufactured in China before I purchased, could care less... great company and awesome amps. 

Been complaints on here that they have zero service if something breaks .
I've tried the Hegel H190 on the KEF LS50, Reference 1, Tekton Impact Monitors, and they all produce solid tight bass. 
In my experience, Hegel's after sale support as provided by their US Distributor has been entirely satisfactory:

Hegel Music Systems USA
East Long Meadow, MA
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (413) 224-2480

Factory authorized service was provided by: 
Approved Audio Service, Inc
49 Commons Drive
Litchfield, CT

Email:  [email protected]
Phone: 860-567-5801


10g speaker cable is usually a bad fit anywhere, btw....

Can you please elaborate on this? I recently purchased some 10g speaker cables from BlueJeans and can't tell them apart from $1k AQ.