Slew rate, I believe, is how fast your amp can recharge it's main power capacitors. If a humongous crecendo sucks all of the reserve power out of your caps, you want to replace it pronto (sorry, I watched M*A*S*H today). Compare Krell's slew rate (at least their older amps) to a typical Audio Research product. If memory serves, its like one hundred times more (i.e. quicker). As far as a snappier sound from your gear, try: Nordost cable; more efficient speakers (or speakers with a more stable impedence curve e.g. KEF); a more powerful amp; less sound absorbing material in your listening room; etc. Good Luck!
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