My gut feeling says to rule out the class A section if it 'actually' makes a noticable difference to the electricity bills. And the heat factor does not sound like my thing either.
Class A makes a noticeable difference to Heat, Electricity bills (always pulling full power from mains) and Sound Quality......only you can decide if it's worth it.
FWIW. My opinion would be as follows - given the amp is on a lot of the time and at low volume, you should steer clear of Class A. Provided you choose carefully (which you are), the compromise will be minimal......bare in mind though, the best sounding AB amps are heavily biased in A. The only way to avoid heat (and larger power usage), is to go Class D (Devialet)
"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again." André Gide
I just had a look at the specs of both Accus. How did you connect your TT when you auditioned them? Did they have an optional TT option board? If not, your money might be better spent on a E-260 + AD-20 board than on a E-360... Or do the prices you quote include the option boards already? [could well be a daft remark... I know less than nothing about turntables. Just trying to think along with you...]
When I had the E260 at home it was on for many hours without a break and barely got warm. Seemed to be consistenly warm without much variation. And it was around 30/32 degrees that day.
WIth the E260 the turntable was connected into my preamp and that connected into one of the line in on the accuphase. I think if I had more money I would push for the E360 but that would be really tight and it would cause all kinds of other headaches to work around. I am sure Accu's on pre-board option is amazing but that would have to be for another time. The E-260 comes with one optional board slot and the E-360 with two slots.
Could you re-demo the E-260 with the option board? You can then compare the AD-20 (€995) with your pre-amp, and consider selling on the pre. Just a thought...
Good advice worth considering by Doc G.
The E350 doesn't run at all hot either.
Accuphase E350 amp, Electrocompaniet EMC1UP CDP, Siltech 25th Classic anniversary 330I XLR Harbeth Super HL5 on Sound Anchor Quod ELS63 stands, Chord Odessey2 speaker cable. Grado SR60 headphones.
One thing that came up often in the Japanese reviews of the 260 that I've read is that it is relatively lacking in bass control and bass detail compared to the higher spec. Accuphases and some of the similarly priced Luxmans, but really it came down to personal preference. Now, if you didn't get that impression from your speakers, then I wouldn't worry about it.
Luxmans, on the other hand, are known for taking a really solid grip on your bass drivers, although many reviews seem to think the 505uX has moved away from the traditionaln "Lux tone" and gone for a faster, more agile sound with less body and less satisfactory bass. I haven't auditioned the 505uX sufficiently to verify this.
L505u (100W ) £3295
L550A 11 (20W Class A) £3595
L507u (110W) £4795
L590 11 (£30W Class A) £6495
Wow, those are some serious markups.
The 505u retailed at the equivalent of 1500 pounds. It's nice, but I wouldn't pay over 2000 pounds.
The 507u is one of my favourites, and it retailed for around 2700 pounds. Not sure how it stands up at 4795 pounds. It brings more speed, power and control and has a reputation for being a bit more energetic (rocks harder) than the 505u and 509u.
Both the 505u and 507u are no longer produced and they are now onto the 505uX and 507uX.
The on board phono stage of Luxmans is highly regarded.
Observe the signature in its natural habitat.
I hear good things about the AD20 BUT if there was any more money to invest I would be tempted to just push for the bigger amp. I don't think there is much cash 2nd hand for my current pre-amp so thats just something that will have to wait I think.
I think my next step is to listen to some Lux amps so I have some comparison.
Heard the Lux 590ax, great amp!
The Lux 550 did not drive my Focals very well, the 590ax was much better.
I speacially register under this page to talk with you. I know it's difficult to find good informations on the web and particulary for those kind of question, it need answer from persons that tried out those things.
I'm making different tests since the middle of fall 2012, and I compared the Accuphase e-260 with the e-360 and against other opponents from other brands like luxman, mc intosh, audia, leema, atc, accustic arts, goldmund and others... The tests was made in a professionnal recording studio in my neighborhood. A near perfectly treated accoustic room. I always used the same speakers and the same CD Player, for putting out the factor that could come from the dac of the cd player. Only exception was with the Luxman L-505ux and the L-550ax that was feeded with their own luxman cd player. Mostly, the cd player was an accuphase dp400 and the speakers was a B&W804d and a Xavian XN270. All the current was filtered.
I will recommend you to be happy with the E-260. Why ? Because you will need a KILLER ROOM to hear a little-tiny-thing-so-difficult-to-identify-that-you-will-believe-it's-psycho-accustic. Really, a lot of times, I believed I was confronted to psychological differences and had hard time to point out what will be very different between both. I could, after a long period, point out that some details fly a little bit better in the room with the E-360. The dynamic was minimalisticly more fine on the E-360, but, all those "better qualities" are so difficult to point out as if you analyse the exact flying pattern of two 9mm bullets fired from a gun.
The seller gave the one good advice. It's to never put the E-260 on speakers that are needing currents less than 4 ohms. Because he don't like that.
Another bad point of the E-260 in regard of the E-360, are the little pusher plastic buttons, that are more fragile than those on the E-360, that are standard. So, If you plan to play a lot with them, you will need to beware of that because the probability of a break in ten or twenty years is existing.
Actually, in Europe, there is a serious problem of reliability of the ..60 serie of accuphase too. I'm on different forum, and, simultanously, more persons than usual started to complain about problems with their new ..60. Often, it's humming or background noise, sometimes it's bad mounted vu-meter needle, sometime it's... simple breakdown. Be aware of that if you choose to turn yourself for a used one.
I hope it could help you out.
Then, other brands was recommended to you by other forumers. But all of them, although Luxman, have their own way to make sound. This is nuances but it will really depend about your tastes.
The Luxman L-505ux, for example, was (a bit) cheaper as the Accuphase E-260, and was equipped with a built in phono pre that is not bad. But he was flatter in the dynamic. He wasn't able to allow me to listen to some details of an accustic guitar player., The curve of the guitar strings was sharply followed and retraced by the accuphase, the luxman stopped before that and give "the great part of it". The toms of a drum wasn't so deep on the l-505ux. You could really listen to the end of the recording room with the e-260. Some details, when a lot of details came together, was simplified with the l-505ux, but they was clearly defined one in the other, when the e-260 was playing. The bass was less deep with the luxman as with the accuphase. Both musical scene was large and the artists takes position on those.
But this are all details, if you like it more "laid back", this tendence to not show you the last inch of detail could clearly be your cup of tea and make the Luxman interesting for you. In the other way, if you like this "closer to reallity" feeling of the accuphase, go for it.
Bad thing about the luxman :
-The volume knob is of awful quality and is nothing like a japanese brand, renowned for that, should make. It's a tiny film of aluminium that is layered on a plastic button. The way it gives volume is bad made too, 75% of the sound volume came in the 1/2 position, so you loose the run of the other half.
- the prices of Luxman are raising so high that they doubled of price in less than 5 years.
Oh yeah, and I'm a new member. Hello guy's ! Yes I'm a woman, but I warn you, I'm only here for speaking about hifi. Be clearly aware of that !
I'm not speaking english very well. I'm excusing for all mistakes.
That was quite an entrance........welcome to the forum btw.
We need a knowledgeable woman on here to keep us in check, so I hope you stick around.
Regardless of what gender you are, wow! what a superb insightful write up... the best piece I've read on here for ages, thank you.
You might also give Marantz PM-11S3 a listen, its a gem of an amp with a great phono stage. (MM/MC)
Yep I agree, interesting report of first-hand experience.
Great post. hello.
Arcam Alpha 9/9P amps and Alpha 9 CD all extensively modified by Fidelity Audio (level 3+), Acoustic Energy speakers, Fidelity Audio NNU X Reference Mains Filter, quality cables & interconnects, Sony AV.
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