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LachlanDennis's picture
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Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.
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Hey,

 

I'm looking to pick up my first Integrated amplifier but, being new to the idea, I am finding myself lost in terms of what I should buy. I have a reasonably low budget of £300 - £400.

My preferred genre of music is hip hop followed closely by EDM (I use the abbreviation EDM becuase it literally can be any kind of electronic music) so something with powerful bass capabilities is important.

I am also looking for something that I can connect my turntable up to (I assume that this is a common option for most integrated amplifiers but just in case I'm mistaken)

I was hoping to get the opinion of people more knowledgeable than myself to at least point me in the right direction. Any help would be appreciated.

What brands would be best suited to a beginner within my price range?

What is the best course of action for me once I have narrowed down my options?

Thank you.

BigH's picture
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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

If you want a lot of bass I would look at NAD. Some amps don't have a phono stage so check before buying.

 

Another amp to consider is the Rega Brio R, good for LPs, is about £500 new but can be found for about £400 ex demo.

 

Anothe amp. that is now available for about £300 new is Arcam A18 not sure if it will have enough bass for you.

 

I find speakers are more influential on sound and bass than amps.

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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

Welcome to the madhouse.

Firstly, what speakers and source, apart from a turntable, do you have or planning?

I would strongly advise an audition with a dealer. If you go to Richer Sounds they'll have a number of amps around your budget, although Marantz seems to be the only one with a built-in phono stage. They do stock the outgoing Arcam A18 which is like the Marantz and comes with a fabulous 'stage'. They do other brands like Cambridge but you'll need to budget for a outboard phono stage (£100 approx).

Amp; CDP; Turntable; Tuner; Speakers

LachlanDennis's picture
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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

Thank's for the prompt replies guys.

In terms of speakers I was going to just borrow a set from my dad that he was previously using for his own sound system until I can afford a better set. I'll have to find out from him what kind they are but they won't be anything special by any means.

I'll look into some dealers in the area and see if I can arrange an audition. What should I expect when it comes to the audition. Do I just go in and play my own music through different amps till I find one I like the sound of? 

An outboard phono stage would be an option as the Turntable isn't an immediate necessity. I'm trying to kind of build as I go, as my money allows, But I was hoping to pick up an amp first. Does this make sense or should I get a good set of speakers first?

The only other sourse I'm looking at, at the moment would be an aux input. Like my ipod or my pc. Nothing too specialist.

 

 

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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

I would probably choose the speakers first but if you getting some old ones then it makes sense to get the amp first. I would try to choose both together and then buy the amp. then speakers later. How much do you think you will want to spend on speakers?

As for demos it can vary between stores, try to find one that has a separate demo room, if they have 2 then choose the nearest size to yours. Yes take your music along and play on whatever system until you find something you like. I would probably not buy anything the first visit unless you really love it. Initially I would just try to get a feel of what sort of amp/speakers appeal to you. I think speaker affect the way system sounds more than amps. 

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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

The Rotel RA-10 also has a built-in phone pre amp.

LachlanDennis's picture
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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

Yeah, like I said my dad has a pair of speakers I can use. They're not the best but they're by no means terrible speakers and they'll suffice.

I'll try to at least line up some speakers that I would like to buy when oney allows. I'd be willing to spend the same sort of amount on speakers but it would have to wait until I have saved a bit more. 

It would make sense that the speakers would have a larger effect on the sound so like you said I'll try to find both while I am doing some tests and then I'll just put getting the spakers on hold.

Thanks for the help guys. If anyone else has any more suggestions for amps or speakers that would suit my price range and would be worth trying to demo I would love to hear.

 

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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

I see the Denon PMA720AE is now under £200 could be worth a try.

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RE: Good budget amplifier to suit my needs.

I'll look into it. If there is a better one for slightly more though I would like to go for that.  I'll add it to the demo list. Smile

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