Totem Arros - Tube Amps ?


Hi,

I am trying to help my frend with a 2 channel set-up for a medium room ( 15 x 12 x 8 ). We are considering Totem Arros. Which of the following amps will be a good fit:

1. Cary SLI-80
2. Primalune Prologue 2
3. VTL IT-85

I know that cary is a more expensive one....but we wan to consider the amp that best integarates with Arros. Musical preference is Vocals, Instruments and Jazz with occasional pop.

Thanks
Grakesh
grakesh
I heard the VTL with much of the Totem lineup very recently. I was very impressed with it in conjunction with the Arros. Since I was auditioning speakers, I didn't listen to any other amps. I do recall it being better than the Musical Fidelity X-150 I heard with the Arro's several months before that. But for double the price, who's to say...
All,

One more addition to the list is:

4. Jadis Orchestra Reference

thanks
Grakesh
I own Totem Arro's with a Conrad Johnson tube amplifier MV-55 (remote controlled passive preamp.) I listen to the same as your friend plus classical. I am very happy with my setup. If no remote is needed, consider a CJ integrated CAV-50 (a MV-55 plus preamp in one.)
Another important point to consider is the speaker cabling. I use Arro's Tress with a single run to the tweeter and a double run to the woofer (based on Vince, Totem's owner recommendation.) It really opened things up.
I have a similar question -- I just bought a pair of Totem Arros and am planning to match them with my C-J PV-10B preamp and a power amp to be determined. If I were to do this, what would you suggest for a power amp? More tubes or solid state? Anything specific? I'm looking within the C-J family at the moment because I know they generally pair well, but am open to any suggestions.

The room is pretty decent size, about 15x20x10, but columns and furniture divide it in two -- the speakers will be in the larger area, about 15x12x10, and close to the rear wall. I'm going for a pretty versatile system, both analog and ditigal, playing a wide range of music. I'm not a tube fanatic, so wouldn't mind throwing in a SS power amp.

I'd greatly appreciate any suggestions or experiences.

Thanks,

Eric
Hi,

Sorry for posting this question in this thread...I know Totem demos its Forests / Hawks with Plinius 9200..Also I heard that Arros are 4 Ohm speakers and have a reputation of really shining with high quaity electronics and good clean power. Does it mean Plinius 9200 (SS Integ with 200 watts/ch) will be a better match to Arros compared to these tube amps like Cary SLI-80, VTL IT-85, CJ CAV 50, Primaluna Prologue 2 and Jadis Orchestra Reference ? Please keep in mind that the type of music my friend likes is Jazz, Vocals, Instruments and occasional pop

Thanks
Grakesh
Haven't heard the Arros ( yet ), but I've heard the Forest played with Rogue's amps, including the Metis/Atlas and Stereo 90/99 pre/power combinations, and I must say it was a winning combination ( both of them ) ! Extremely musical, non-fatiguing - maybe not the last word dynamically and in bass extension but you can't go wrong here, especially with the likes of jazz, vocals, instrumental and pop ( even rock ! ).
Grakesh:
I first heard the Arros at the NY show driven by a Plinius. I asked Vince then & there and he assured me that I would be fine with my CJ MV-55.
BTW The Arros have been demo'd with a CAV-50.
See: http://www.enjoythemusic.com/lefestival00/part2.htm
(Also a private web site: http://www.rodclark.com/hifi.htm)
I may also suggest that you call Vince directly at Totem Acoustics; he is very helpful.
one more vote Conrad CAV 50. I drive Totem Model 1 with it, very convincingly. Most Totems, in my experience love CJ amplification.
Well, here's a different take....

I have a pair of Arro's in the bedroom (about 16x18 or so), and since I wasn't sure I was going to be keeping the Arro's on a lark I picked up a Sonic Impact Super-T.

I don't have anything to compare to with these speakers, but I've got to say that I think they sound absolutely stellar with this inexpensive little amp. Great clarity, non-fatiguing, musical, tight, punchy bass (and as extended as I'd want in a bedroom); overall tonally nicely balanced with no glaring oddities - drums sound like real drums, guitars sound like real guitars, saxes, horns, etc, all sound like the instruments I know well, and all sound like they're in the room with you. A smallish soundstage as the speakers are only about 3 feet apart, but still nice imaging. At about 10watts, you can't crank it, but in the bedroom I'd never want to anyway, and it's surprisingly loud anyway already.

I have a Red Wine Clari-T on the way that I think will up the ante some.

While my exposure to high-end amps is limited I'm really impressed with how this setup sounds. The speakers are really remarkable.
I have found the Arro's to sound best with warmer tube amps. The Jolida 302b is the best I've heard paired with them. I imagine that the CJ amps suggested here would also work well.

Michael
All,

What subwoofers do you use with Totem Arros ?

I am assuming CJ CAV 50 has a subwoofer out. Can you please confirm ? Also with just 45 watts, can CJ CAV 50 drive Arros to room filling sound in a 20 x 20 x 8 room if it is paired up with a good matching subwoofer ?

Thanks
Grakesh
Sufentanil,

What other Amps did you try with Arros in-addition to Jolida 302b ?

Thanks
grakesh
Grakesh,

I have heard the Arro's with Jolida, Consonance, Marsh, McIntosh, Music Hall (Mambo) and a couple others. (We had a lot of fun at a dealer near where I lived last year trying different amps with those speakers.) Of those, my favorite is the Jolida 302b and my least favorite was $8000 of McIntosh preamp/amp combo. I also have my Arro's hooked up to my Sherbourn 5-channel amp (sounds decent, actually) and sometimes try it with my Innersound ESL 300 (sounds OK, but I really prefer the Jolida).

I hope that helps.

Michael
Hi,

I just realised that CJ CAV 50 does not come with a Remote. I usually prefer to have a remote with minimalistic functions namely vol control and mute.

Also, can any Arro owners let me know what subwoofers they use with Totem Arros in their 2 channel set-up ?

Thanks
Grakesh
Hi,

Can anyone help please ?

Grakesh
Not with Arros, but I used a Rel Storm III with Totem Sttafs and it was a beautiful combination. Seamless, and full.
Bdgregory,

What are you driving your staffs with ? Are you using 2 sub woofers or just one ?

We were thinking of trying this combo:

Totem Arro
REL STORM (or) Stadium
Mostly Conrad Johnson CAV 50, if not Cary SLI 80
Rega Planet 2000

The one thing that concerns me is CJ CAV 50 lacking a remote. The other one is ...does CJ have a sub woofer out and if I want to go with two sub woofers, how can we do that ?

Thanks
Grakesh
All,

My main concern with Conrad Johnson CAV 50 is its low tube wattage of 45 watts/channel. I know that the max Arros need are 70 watts/chan. Can owners of Arros let me know whether CJ CAAV 50 with 45 watts/ch can drive the Arros properly in 20 x 20 x 8 room ?

Thanks
Prakash
I went through several amps with them as I played around with different setups.

I started with my old trusty Phase Linear 400, w/i about 3 months after I bought Sttafs went to a Parasound HCA-2200. Then to B&K M200s which is where I stayed mostly. I also have a Bedini 100.100 that I used with them on occaision.

I recently bought a pair of Mani-2's which now are in my reference 2-channel rig, the Sttafs are now the fronts in my home theater being driven by a B&K AV5125.

Finally I had them set up for a couple of months on an old Fisher X202 Tube integrated (18 w/c).

I had far more power than they needed in most of these amps. The Fisher actually did a really nice job on them, though I didn't try to push them, but it was really surprising how much volume, adn how clean it was. I was running them w/o a sub in the setup and the bass was excellent . . . in a pretty large room too.

I used only one Storm III and it's as much as I needed. My room is 14x24x8' ceilings.

As for connecting the Sub - with the Rel - you don't want to use a subwoofer pre-out even if you have one. Use the high level inputs, and connect the special nuetric cable to connect to the speaker outputs on your amplifier. It's very high impedance and uses no power - the amp doesn't even know it's there. Rel recommends this because this way the sub receives the same signal as your Speakers. You can connest 2 subs the same way, though I frankly don't think that would be the best use of your money. The Storm will preally pump it out.
Bdgregory,

Sorry for asking some silly questions. What are you referring to as "High Level Inputs" and are you referring to these inputs on your REL sub-woofer ? Also, does it mean you have two pairs of outputs on your Amplifier that allows you to connect one pair of outputs to speakers and another pair of outputs to Sub-woofer ? Do you mind simplifying this and explain me in a simple terms ? Please bear with an audiophile ignorant like me.

Thanks
Grakesh
Most subwoofers (I believe) have 2 input options - Hi level, and Low Level. Hi level inputs take signal from a Power amplifier, Low Level inputs take signal from the preamp. In the case of low level, it's always an RCA interconnect (and on the Rel they also have XLR Balanced). For high level inputs, you connect to your Power Amplifier's speaker output binding posts, and the oter end to the "high level input terminals on the Sub. For many subs, the high level input terminals are simply 5-way binding posts. The Rel uses a special connector - a Neutric Speakon connector.

My amp only has one set of binding posts (as most do) and I connect the Rel Cable to the same posts as my speakers. It's designed to be this way - and as I said, the amp hardly even knows it's there - electrically speaking. The other end of the Rel cable (is the subwoofer end) has a Neutric Speakon connector which plugs into the back of the Sub. Once connection is made, you need to set up the crossover and output level of the Sub. This is done by setting the controls on the Rel's amp panel and is described in detail in the Rel Manual. You can download the manual from the Rel website and read through their setup procedures - they're quite detailed and will also help explain the connections further.

hope that helps . . .

Bdgregory,

Thanks for patiently explaining the set-up process. I appreciate it.

By the way, I happened to come across a link on search that details this set-up process at a high level ...but they also express their opinion about this set-up. Thought it might be helpful to you. The link is:

http://ultimateavmag.com/speakersystems/1103sonus/

Thanks
Grakesh
Thanks Grakesh - interesting they would have that detail.

As for their opinions - all of their arguments *against* using high level taps apply for a Home Theater-Movie set up (ie 5.1, or 7.1), and none of them apply in a Stereo setup.

From my experience Rel's recommended set up using high level taps is far better, and easier to tune in a 2 channel application.

I'm inclined to agree with them for Home Theater, and actually I am using the low-level sub out (though not a Rel Sub) for my HT rig. One nice think about the Storm 3 is it can use BOTH taps at the same time. That is, you can connect using the high level inputs to your main amp outputs - this augments the low end extention of your mains, AND connect the low-level (RCA) to the Sub output on your HT pre-pro for LFE.
Grakesh, to answer your question about required amp power to make the Arro's sing, 50W is just fine. I have tried it with a 20W tube amp, and it was severely underpowered, but my amp is 50W and sounds great.

Michael