Do you mean the 150 wpc VAC 300.1 stereo amp?
(Or is there some new VAC amp designated as 301 that I am unaware of?)
I too was wondering this.
I suspect, for about the same $, that running a pair of 200's in mono may slightly outperform a stereo 300.1. However, I have not heard the 200.
If you want the real answer, call Kevin @ VAC. Im sure he'd give you an honest list of the pro's & con's.
IMO, considering your speakers and music preference, the 300.1 stereo amp is going to run out of power.
I'd go with monoblocks.
I did talk to Kevin, he leaned towards the 200's in mono. "More vivid but less organic" to paraphrase. I just wondered if any one else has compared the two
The 200's were built to drive an 83db electrostat. VAC will tell you two 200's is a better solution for hard to drive speakers than one 300.1.
I see that you listed your 300.1 for sale.
Why not pick up a 2nd 300.1, run them in mono and have the best of both worlds...vivid AND organic???
That's a tantalizing thought and I may still do that. The thought of 16 KT88s glowing in the room is a little overwhelming.
Highly recommended to run 300.1's in mono...haven't looked back....
I agree with Barrelchief and Art - that's what I've done. The tube glow is a bonus!! I was quite surprised by how much better the presentation got adding the 2nd 300.1 amp. Way more of everything - more air, bigger soundstage, better imaging and more organic. Also much better bass depth, control and speed. Definitely took my system up a few notches and would highly recommend you do the same if you can swing it.
Well if two 300.1 as monoblocks are the way to go, then why not the VAC Statement 440? Has anyone heard it?
Yes, sure. Go ahead with the VAC 440. That's a splendid idea.
When reality reappears, consider the VAC preamp into a good solid state amp.
The 440s are monoblocks. They were playing at CES in January.
I think we are in a totally different price range with the 440's 75,000 anyone.
Of course, that's why the 300.1's make so much more sense.....
Well I just had the good fortune to compare these two amps in the same system. It's very simple really:
If you like your coffee with milk and sugar the 300 is for you. If you prefer your coffee black, go for the 200s as monoblocks ............... plain and simple
But what if you don't like coffee at all?
(I can't stand the taste or even the smell of the stuff!)
And yet, I love the 300.1 VAC amp.
Go figure, huh?!
(PS I haven't heard the 200 monoblocks, so I have no opinion on them.)
And if you like your coffee with Baileys Irish Cream or Cognac, 2 300.1's is the obvious choice..... ;-)
P.S. - This also works WITHOUT the Coffee!!
Franzschubert, Did you compare 300.1 mono to 200 mono? What speakers were you using in the comparison?
Yes. I did various comparisons. I had one 300.1 and one 200, and my speakers are Avalon Ascent II.
Listening to them in Mono (one speaker only) the 300 was warmer, richer and more forgiving of sibilance. The 200 was more detailed and vivid.
Then I used them as (asymmetrical) monoblocks, adjusting the higher gain of the 300 with its controller. This produced the deepest holographic soundstage I have ever heard with a gorgeous textured base. This must be close to what 2 300's as monoblocks must be like ?!!?
Fplanner2010 the difference between a 300.1 and Cognac is that the 300.1 does not give you a headache.
Franzschubert Please tell us what the other components are in your system. Thanks
AMR CD 77 as source
Music First Audio (silver wire) TVC as preamp
Cardas IC's and speaker cables (tri-wired)
If it is the older cardas their cables are for sure on the warm side of nuetral.
Franzschubert, why not go 300.1 mono? CA is cool and dry so heat shouldn't be an issue :-)
That would also be my recommendation. FWIW, the heat is really not as bad as I thought it would be from a pair of 300.1s.