What's more important, watts or capacitance?

I'm confused about what makes an amp able to reproduce musical transients realistically. Some articles I've read state that one needs lots of power, measured in watts, to handle dynamics, especially when pushing moderately sensitive speakers. Other articles refer to capacitance as the key. Currently, I use an amp with 600W / 900W into 8/4 ohms, and if I read the specs correctly, it has 60,000 microfarrads of capacitance. An alternative I'm considering puts out 'only' about 220W / 400W but claims capacitance of 200,000 microfarrads. So which amp will sound more dynamic? FWIW, my speakers have a sensitivity of 87.5 db, avg. impedence of 4 ohms and a minimum impedence of 3 ohms. I don't listen at real high volumes, but I do like classical music at close to live levels.

Thanks for any insight!
Watts are the amount of power that can be delivered, capacitance the amount of current stored for immediate delivery. It is possible to add outboard cap banks IF you know what you are doing, possible to generate an interesting epitaph if you don't. If you have an amp that really delivers 900 watts into 4 ohms and has 60K of capacitance you should have enough, but specs don't always tell the whole story on sound quality. Current storage is far less important for Class D amps and similar which can draw current very quickly. A complicated question with no simple answer; remember again specs aren't sound quality. Some think very large storage is critical, others think small caps give a more agile sound, Classe use to take this route, may still.
Like Stan said,large caps aren't a guarantee of a better amp.A company may have a smaller power transformer,with bigger caps,and give good short time needed power.An amp with a big power transformer,and smaller caps,can give you that same power on a continuous basis.If a lot of power is needed,that one may have better overall power.With that said,it's still the overall design of everything that make an amp sound good.Not just big caps.Those booming car stereos use extra big caps to store up power,to give those short big booms.In between each big boom,the caps charge up quickly,for the next big boom.Definitely,not high end.Overall good design is whats important.I hope this gives you an idea of what big caps alone do.
Stanwal: A complicated question with no simple answer; remember again specs aren't sound quality.

Hifihvn: Overall good design is whats important.
I second these comments. At best those specs will tell you how much maximum volume can be generated without clipping the amp. However, the subjective perception of dynamics involves a lot more than watts or energy storage, including a lot of things that can only be assessed by listening.

In particular, the subjective perception of dynamics will depend on how well the system reproduces the leading edges of rapidly changing transients. Things like risetime, ringing, overshoot, etc. Those things in turn can be affected by a whole lot of things, including the use of feedback in the design, transient intermodulation distortion, harmonic distortion, bandwidth, phase response, etc.

-- Al
I agree - It is much more complicated than amount of caps and the size of transformer. Power supply capacitors are in the signal path (circuit closes thru them) and their inductance and ESR have direct effect on transients and therefore perceived loudness. Good capacitors are expensive.
This is similar to a recent thread about choosing speakers by specs. You might get a general idea about how an amp will drive a specific speaker, but in real world use you can not choose components by numbers. And even if you can predict an amp's ability to drive a load, you cant predict if it will sound worth a darn. I have seen (heard) little amps outclass amps that were much bigger by the numbers. I have also seen speakers with similar specs give completely different results from the same amp.
Look for the dynamic headroom and dynamic range spec (the loudest and softest sound it can play) many SS amps are over 100db. Look for high signal to noise ratio, some amps are 110. Look for high damping factor (this is what is supposed to "control" the speaker rather than the speaker controling the amp). Ignore THD spec, what really matters is THD + Noise. Look at the TDN+N over the power band - does the amp only spec good at one power lever and rather poor at other power output levels? Look for how long an amp can do its rattet power - often times the power rating is only for 30 seconds (If I recall the FTC requirements). Look at input impedance too - this is important for mating to the preamp- you want very high value like 100Kohms or more.
Slanski62-what speakers and power amps are you looking at?
this might be easier to ask as there maybe some agoners out there who have experience with what you are considering and can better answer your concerns with realtime feedback.
You may also see a response from Atmasphere on this question if Ralph does pay attention to his answer.
Thanks everybody for your helpful answers. My current amp is the Bryston 14B-SST2, which i use with the BAT VK42SE pre. I'm considering either the ARC HD220 or the BAT VK-600. My speakers are a custom design by Selah Audio. They're called the Visionarios and are shown on the site. My hypothesis is that with the Bryston, I'm not using it's 900W power output anyway, so maybe an amp with lower output but greater energy storage would represent an improvement.
I don't listen at real high volumes, but I do like classical music at close to live levels.

Classical music can get to 115 db in the first 5 rows of almost any concert hall. To do that with your speakers will require over 1000 watts.

A nimble amplifier- now that is another matter. It would be great if power supply filter capacitance and power were all that you needed to know, but its way more complicated by that! The one thing you need to know about this as that you cannot look at the spec sheets made by anyone and get a clear picture of the amp which will have the fastest transient response.

One spec that points to that though is risetime or slew rate. A slow risetime is 15Volts/microsec, a fast amplifier is over 100V (our amps, which are tube, have a 600V/usec risetime in the output section). You will find also the the shorter the signal path is in the amp or preamp, that there is a loose correlation to the 'speed' of the amp.

Feedback in the amplifier will slow its response, though quite often at the same time will seem to make the amplifier sound brighter (due to the addition of trace amounts of odd-ordered harmonics). Its one thing to have speed, but its another for the price to be one of irritation, so this is an area of concern for any designer!

Consequently, this really becomes a matter of audition.