The question "The Acoustat Delema"

I have just finished a complete retrofit of a set of Acoustat model 2+2 (yea, the eight footers !) What would be the ideal amp/amps to run these wonderful, beautiful, most ineffieceient, low impedence, power hungry ....I think you get the point? With the remodel they are quiet attractive ! but them so are some of the prices on the amplifiers that ARE STABLE ENOUGH TO RUN THEM!
Look for a used Acoustat TNT-200 amp. It was made for these speakers. I used to own this combo and it was superb! There is a place called Sounds Like New, where a former employee of Acoucstat who worked closely with Jim Stirckland modifies these amps and reportedly can transform a pair of them into awesome monoblocks.
Is you want something newer, the Hafler Line of Trans Nova amps are also desgigned by Jim Strickland, cofounder of Acoustat, and one of the larger amps would probably sound great with the Acoustats too.
Good listening,
I owned 1+1s for many years. The best sounding amp that I used with them was the CJ MV-55 tubed amp. It was not the best for the bottom end but was very rich in the lower mids.

I was also pleased with the CJ Premier 11 - better low end than the 55 but not as rich souding.

The best solid state I had was a Krell KSA-50. Outstanding bottom, exc. power even though 8 ohm rating was only 50 watts.

Second best SS - an Acoustat 120.

The Acoustats are so revealing - I'm sure you will have a great time with them
I got great results with a Bryston amp on my model 3's, and second the TNT 200's.
Find a pair of the Acoustat direct drive servo amps as used in earlier models such as the Acoustat X and Monitor III. If you do, contact me and I'll put you in touch with a couple of friends who are very familiar with the amps and ways to improve them.

I had a pair of 2+2s at one time and found the Bedini 25/25 to work pretty well.

I know where there is a TNT 200 for sale for $399.
As an owner of Acoustat 2+2s for over twenty years, I still find myself asking that question. But I pretty much go with solid state because I no longer have the patience with tube amps that I did in my youth. If you can find a lightly used Spectral DMA200 from the late 80s then this amp will be your last solid state amp for these speakers; along with the DMC 10 preamp this combo will give you a ruthlessly revealing experence that is remarkable. It will not be a soft fuzzy sound but something that is edgy but not too edgy or ingrating; a good solid enhancement of macro- as well as microdynamics over a tube amp. Plus much better bass drive. Definitely not a warm sound but definitely not a hard sound. Of course the Acoustats are very revealing of the source whether CD or analog. Good luck!!
Dear Chris,
I havent been on this site in almost two months so I apologise for not returning a message and thanking you for your reply. Is that amp you said you knew of still for sale? I purchased an adcom 555 to do the job until I find something a little more stable for the low impedences these big boys throw at an amplifier.
Regards Bo Kirby



Sorry to be a PITA, but this stuff is inexcusable. I guess it's the former English major in me....

Hello Chef. I have to agree with Essentialaudio's recommendation in a big way. The acoustat OTL servo amps are about as good as it gets here sir, although they do need to be updated to really shine. When refurbished... I honestly do not think that any other amp [regardless of cost] can compare. My servos {mated to 2+2's} have beat out some very highly regarded amplifiers over the years[both tube and solid state]. I really had to smile {more like a smerk} at the mention of the little 25 watt Bedini driving the Acoustat 2+2"s. As odd as it may look on paper.... it really is the gospel. No... you can't rock out, but it will surely have you shaking your head in disbelief as it makes for one very engaging musical experience. All the best in your search sir and have a Great Christmas.
I haven't been back on this either, bad.
I'll check on the TNT. Someone in our Audio club had it. I'll let you know.
I suppose I shall look into updating my pair of servos at the project of 2005.