If you can find Sunfire 600 sig amp, than perhaps it's best improvement for money if you like Sunfire house sound.
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You’ll be spending many thousands of dollars to equal the performance of a Sunfire. Maybe all it needs is a good service? Bill Flannery actually worked at Sunfire and Bob Carver pretty much gave him his repair shop.
He he can restore and update your amp and it’ll sound better then new. He has 2 of my 300 watt Sunfire amps right now that I’m commissioning him to convert into mono blocks to run my SoundLab A1’s
I’d try that before dropping big bread on the new stuff because I haven’t really seen a revolution in amp tech in the 20 some years since Bob Carver dropped the "tracking down converter" bomb on us.
I too have a Sunfire 300 . I just aquired it a month ago . Best amp by far so far on my King sound stats . I am curious of your post about modding to mono . Can you give details ? How much does this transformation cost ? and finally the amp i have now sounds incredible . Would shipping it to this fellow and him giveing it a once over be required in your mind . Thanks
My plan is to internally bridge them. In the owners manual it states that by running jumpers from the inputs and the speaker terminals you can effectively bridge these amps.
I ran them like this for a couple years. Then I thought, it would be better to remove all the extra inputs, outputs and run the jumpers internally right off the boards.
Bill Flannery is doing the restoration and modifications along with another man. This is what I am having done.
(1) Pair of WBT 0710ag Binding Posts.
(2) One WBT 0210ag RCA Jack
(3) One Neutrik PowerCon A/C inlet.
Bill will have a CAD/CAM new aluminium back panel cut for these, along with holes for the fuses etc, which will go over the original back panel. Then we will have it anodised and silk screened.
Inside he will replace all the caps and perform routine maintenance and updates to the amps. ( I did ask that the power supply caps be increased in size and he did that by making new brackets to hold them.)
Next will be the removal of the stock RCA's and speaker terminals, XLR etc then internally bridging them so we will have only one set of Binding posts and one RCA jack.
As far as costs, this is something that Bill has never done. He is not really a "modification" guy. After speaking with him several times, his only requirement was that this be done with a factory level or above quality.
The basic recap/update is somewhere north of $300. We talked about a budget and because this is the first set he is modifying for me, they will probably be somewhat expensive.
I told him that you do what you do best and keep me updated on the progress. So I really am not sure what it'll end up costing.
To answer your question. As these amplifiers are now reaching around 20 years old, a recap/update is mandatory in my opinion.
The last thing you'll want is a cap blowing up or failing that could cause irreplaceable damage to the amp as these are no longer being made by Sunfire. Carver sold it to a big corporation that was only interested in home theatre, so all the audiophile 2 channel stuff was quickly discontinued.
Seeing as how Bill worked at the original Sunfire company, he has all the factory manuals and updates etc for these amps. I couldn't recommend anyone else more qualified to do the work.
I am keeping a running thread on this upgrade and a few other projects on:
Look me up: Miko1971
Agree, send to flannerys! I bought a b stock sig 600 first gen, sent to flannery, and he said there was no blackening what so ever anywhere, so mine was either not used much, or lightly used, was happy to hear that! He did his restore of caps, removed all the pacom caps and replaced with better , new light, checked everything out, clean bill of health, I should be good for 15-20 years now. Worth the. Money, as. Mentioned, the power does seem endless, no matter volume, or type of music, no clipping, whining, just gobs of uber clean power whenever it's called upon.
They are Carvers top amps, all should be judged by it.
Unless you WANT AND NEED NEW, look at the Sanders sound system MAGTECH. VERY SIMILAR LAYOUT. Very uncanny. Similar designs.
Stick with the sunfire fire until the humming starts, then its trade up time. Once she visits flannerys shop for her internal facelift, you will be good for another 20 years, as long as the hum don't start.
Mine is amazing!
I only plug mine the morning I know I will use it that night or for the weekend. Otherwise it's unplugged. Lightning storms, electrical current bursts, brown outs, etc not good.
It's fine, don't worry. Plug in when you want to use it, but there is a good 2 hour warm up I have noticed, it will sound tighter and just more at ease when warm.
I leave my 300 turned on 24/7 (with surge protection). It does take a couple hours to reach it’s optimal performance after a cold start. Bob Carver has written that it can be left turned on and that constant voltage to the unit will not hurt. (not a good idea if your AC is unstable, IMO).
Plus, I don’t like the idea of an in-rush of current every day when it’s being powered up.
I too have had my amp refurbished by Bill Flannery. I have a 300 first generation, and he upgraded it to meet the specs of the Sunfire 300-two (3rd generation). It now has a much lower noise-floor.
In my situation the sunfire sound is effortless . From low , med to high volume it does not change it’s presentation . No nasties in any frequencies . Smooth sounding .@maplegrovemusic, that says it all. I can only add that the Sunfire "house sound" is lush, warm, with wide and deep soundstaging. It’s very "non-solid state" sounding.