What speakers to match my new cary 805 AE

I just acquired my dream amplifiers, the cary 805 ae. I was not planning to make this purchase but an incredible opportunity presented its self and I had to jump on it. Oh little did I know what a can of worms I have opened for myself. I have just let my wilson W/P 3/2 go so that I might get into a speaker that might be a better matched to that SET sound. The Wilson's by no means sounded bad but you could tell that the amps were struggling to drive the puppies just above moderate listening levels. I have done quite a bit of reading looking for a good match, where that has left me is, CRAZY..Any suggestions or experience would be greatly appreciated.
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I own a pair and they are much less restrictive in speaker matching than most SETs, probably due to their pretty robust power output. I've even successfully used them with the Verity Parsifal/Encore, a modestly difficult load that will devour many SETs alive. So, don't be shy in experimenting - there's a LOT of good choices out there.


PS, they do sound different with 211s vs 845s, notwithstanding the identical specs of those tubes - so be sure to experiment.
Here are a few suggestions:

- Avantgarde Uno or Duo. I have heard the 805AE's driving the Duo's and they are a magnificent combination. The downside - you may not like the larger than life sound, and your room may not suit the Avantgardes.

- Tannoy Prestige Series. These have a far more believable sound than the Avantgardes - more realistic in scale, soundstage not so far forward. But some models have a thick sounding lower midrange / upper midbass that makes it sound "romantic". I like the sound, but may not suit all tastes.

- Wilson Sasha. I was surprised to hear Edgar Kramer's system (of 6moons) - he was using a 35W SET to drive his Wilson Sasha's. It turned my impression of Wilson upside down. Contrary to all expectation, the 35W SET's adequately powered the Sasha's and gave them a sweet, smooth midrange. Imaging is far better than the other two speakers mentioned above.

- Zingali horns. More inexpensive than the Avantgardes and do not sound as big (a good or bad thing depending on your POV). More suited to a small room than the AVG's IMO.

- ProAc D38/D80 or Response 3/4. I used to have a combo of D38/805AE before I upgraded to my current setup. The combination is sweet and dynamic but somewhat lacking in bass.

Good luck with your selection.

I'll second the Zingalis (S3, in my case) as a good match.... but there is a serious caveat. Mine have foam surrounds, both of which deteriorated (actually, disintegrated is more accurate) over a 5 year period. They look beautiful, sound great, and pair well w/805s, but you can expect this problem to occur in any speaker that uses foam surrounds.

In addition to the Zingali and the Verity P/E, the Merlin VSM MMe is a fine (if very different sounding) mate for the Cary 805s.

Thank you all very much, I value your experience. There are not many dealers left in the Phoenix area any more, but I am going to try some demos were I can. I have a feeling that Im out for a little trial and error but I guess this is part of the journey.
HAPPY listening to all !!
I would ad the Audio Note AN-E/SPe HE.

I would add the DeVore Gibbon Super 8, and one of the ZU models.
We ran these at the Stereeophile show together one year with great results on The Vandersteen 5As.
With the 400 watt amps already built in the Bass section of the Vandy 5As the Cary 805s work wonders on the top half of this 8 ohm speaker. Kimber Kable and your done.
Cheers Johnnyr
I have Cary sacd 306 professional sacd, slp05, Cary 805 AE set up as well. I can say Cary 805 AE is my dream amplifier as well.
I had same struggle with speaker. I had b&w N 802 speaker before this Cary 805AE. Finally I edns up with ProAc D 38 and I am very happy with it. It is relatively sensitive speaker with 4 ohms impedance.
One thing I have to say is that first 100 hours speaker sounds bright and flat. I almost returned it bit after those 100 hours this speaker will give you larger than life clean solid 3 dimensional presentation. Detail but liquid mid range which is result of SET and good speaker.
I have listened original Cary 805 and ProAc Response combination 15 years ago and I have had dream about this amp all the way until a few years ago when I finally bought this system.
I am very happy with this set up.
One last thing, when you put this ProAc D 38 on the floor, use provided spike and do not put anything under besides your floor carpet. In my experience that provide best base response (significant difference)
Happy listening

H.Jung, you would be the third person I know of with that exact pairing of Cary CD-306, SLP-05, and 805AE with the ProAc D38. I was one (a few years ago), and I know of another guy in Malaysia as well. You are not him by any chance ... are you?

BTW if your MD means what I think it means, we have something else in common :) MD here also.
Hello Amfibius,
I am glad to meet another person who had my current set up.
I am not the person you met in Malaysia. I am in US.
Yes I am a physician who loves music a lot.
I am enjoying this set up a lot but I am curious what system you are using now?