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New amplifier: my long journey...

Hello hello,

another interesting afternoon today. I went to have my first serious listening to a tube amp, the Jadis D50S signature...it is actually on sale as an ex-demo at the dealer's shop...very interesting.

It was plugged at my Silver RX6 at first...we played a lot of different music, jazz, blues, classic, instrumental, voices...a nice mix. The sound produced by the Jadis is superbe, the amp has a great authority without being aggressive...not even turning up the volume.

It has a great control and superb bass. I was very impressed as I was not expecting this level of bass. It really surprised me how deep and tight it was...even with the RX6 you could feel in your stomach sometimes. Live pieces were absolutely stunning, could really feel the emotions, voices were so natural and the scene was very wide. 

Sound of piano was very intense, each note was full and complete, clear...

Well, this kind of sound really got me...then he plugged the PL200...and that was it! Biggrin

The soundstage became bigger, the music gained another level of "liveliness" (can we say that in English? :D), every sound was more clear....

Now wondering...how would you experts compare the MA PL200 with Kef reference and SF Cremona? The dealer said that Cremona are more adapt to transistor electronics instead of tubes...what do you think?

If I am going to buy a tube amp?!? Well...that's soon to tell, but this sound really got me thinking...I will try to get another demo already tomorrow with the AMS35i (if finally they got it) and with also a much more expensive combo (Primo + AMS35p) to see how they would compete...

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

Well well...in the meantime I also emailed Mr Jadis asking him what would be the perfect match in terms of speakers for the Jadis....as to be honest...I was very impressed by the PL200 but for a short moment I had the impression the Silver RX6 were actually sounding better...

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

I've just got my timing a little wrong.

The valves would have nicely offset the slight forwardness of the MA sound, but I have reservations about the suitability of them with that valve amp....which I'm happy for more technical folk to comment on.

I also think the Kef Refs and the Cremonas, are both unsuitable to be driven with a Valve amp as well. They both have high sensitivity but nose-diving impedance.

IMO The MAs are a bit on the brighter side of neutral, the Kefs a touch the other side of neutral and the SFs are a bit warmer....but this is subjective.

For Valves look for speakers with a sensitivity of 90db +, and an impedance that doesn't drop too low. Audio Note were designed for the job and possibly the Proac D40R, which they say will work with amps from 10W (can't confirm though). I also think Renaud might be suitable: http://www.jm-reynaud.com/jmr/anglais/accueil_us.php

The shop selling the Jadis must have a range of less current hungry speakers, that they could put forward.

How did you find the presentation vs Plinius + Kefs?

Maybe your technical friend can comment on Jadis + Kef/MA as a viable proposition.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

acalex wrote:

Well well...in the meantime I also emailed Mr Jadis asking him what would be the perfect match in terms of speakers for the Jadis....as to be honest...I was very impressed by the PL200 but for a short moment I had the impression the Silver RX6 were actually sounding better...

This is very sensible, and you could also contact Dean Hartley of MA.

Edit. I meant to say that the dealer was possibly worried that the warmer valve sound would be a little too much with the SFs

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

I've just got my timing a little wrong. The valves would have nicely offset the slight forwardness of the MA sound, but I have reservations about the suitability of them with that valve amp....which I'm happy for more technical folk to comment on. I also think the Kef Refs and the Cremonas, are both unsuitable to be driven with a Valve amp as well. They both have high sensitivity but nose-diving impedance. IMO The MAs are a bit on the brighter side of neutral, the Kefs a touch the other side of neutral and the SFs are a bit warmer....but this is subjective. For Valves look for speakers with a sensitivity of 90db +, and an impedance that doesn't drop too low. Audio Note were designed for the job and possibly the Proac D40R, which they say will work with amps from 10W (can't confirm though). I also think Renaud might be suitable: http://www.jm-reynaud.com/jmr/anglais/accueil_us.php The shop selling the Jadis must have a range of less current hungry speakers, that they could put forward. How did you find the presentation vs Plinius + Kefs? Maybe your technical friend can comment on Jadis + Kef/MA as a viable proposition.

 

Well Cno, to be completely honest with you, I think the Jadis was great with the Silver RX6. It really did not dissapoint me at all...

Then he switched to the PL200 and I was ALREADY expecting to hear a huge improvement...but my first istinctive reaction was that I preferred the first sound. Then I said to myself...it must be impossible...as they cost 6 times more...they have to be better. Was also influenced by the dealer who kept saying how clener and nicer the sound was...but my gut feeling was that one.

Unfortunately thies friend lives in Italy so can't really judge. I can ask him for an advice...but speaking about PL200 he said that he tried them once but didn't like as he found the sound too artificial at specific frequencies...and also he said the "s" were hissing...

What do you think of Focal? Or B&W?

 

EDIT: The Focal Electra 1038Be have a 93db sensitivity and a 40-400W reccomended amp.

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

This is very sensible, and you could also contact Dean Hartley of MA. Edit. I meant to say that the dealer was possibly worried that the warmer valve sound would be a little too much with the SFs

Do you have his contact? Hi tried once to contact the technical department of MA and they were not very helpful saying they were not aware of that specific amp so they just gave me the impedance curve and suggested to ask the amplifiers'producer...

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

acalex wrote:

Do you have his contact? Hi tried once to contact the technical department of MA and they were not very helpful saying they were not aware of that specific amp so they just gave me the impedance curve and suggested to ask the amplifiers'producer...

 

I'm afraid I don't, as I've never really got on with modern MAs (I share your friends view of the Platinum range). Dean has been known to frequent these parts on occasion, and failing that, WHF may be able to help.

I suspect your speakers sounded better, because of the PL200 not being driven properly. You will only know for sure when you find speakers with an easy load.

I'm not a great fan of B&W, though to be fair, I haven't heard their most recent models.

Focal are a bit forward for my taste, and when not on the end of Class A (or something like Arcam) are too bright. The bass is very tight and accurate, and although they are very sensitive, the dearer models have plummeting impedance (Electra 1038BE goes down to 3.3 Ohms)

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

acalex wrote:

Do you have his contact? Hi tried once to contact the technical department of MA and they were not very helpful saying they were not aware of that specific amp so they just gave me the impedance curve and suggested to ask the amplifiers'producer...

 

I'm afraid I don't, as I've never really got on with modern MAs (I share your friends view of the Platinum range). Dean has been known to frequent these parts on occasion, and failing that, WHF may be able to help. I suspect your speakers sounded better, because of the PL200 not being driven properly. You will only know for sure when you find speakers with an easy load. I'm not a great fan of B&W, though to be fair, I haven't heard their most recent models. Focal are a bit forward for my taste, and when not on the end of Class A (or something like Arcam) are too bright. The bass is very tight and accurate, and although they are very sensitive, the dearer models have plummeting impedance (Electra 1038BE goes down to 3.3 Ohms)

 

Yes indeed, I saw that! Can't find a speaker which has high sensitivity and impedance not dropping so low...

Tomorrow I will make some phone calls and see if I can pile some demo as following

- Plinius + valve preamp VS Primo + AMS35p VS AMS35i

I might have found a couple of shops around (yes...less than 100km far) which have both Plinius and MF

 

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

acalex wrote:

EDIT: The Focal Electra 1038Be have a 93db sensitivity and a 40-400W reccomended amp.

Out of Kef, SF and MA, they would probably be a better load, and the euphonious Jadis would help tame them.....though I think that they too, are not ideal.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

Did you prefer the Jadis or the Plinius driving your speakers?

 

EDIT. This crowd are in Belgium and stock Audio Note:

http://audio-life.nl/speakers

Sorry it's listed under Belgum, but  is in fact  Holland. :oops:

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

Did you prefer the Jadis or the Plinius driving your speakers?

 

EDIT. This crowd are in Belgium and stock Audio Note:

http://audio-life.nl/speakers

Sorry it's listed under Belgum, but  is in fact  Holland. :oops:

 

Tricky question...I am not sure to be honest as the Plinius was so long ago. With my speakers I think the Jadis was better...with high-end maybe the Plinius...but I can't really compare with the Jadis as probably, as you said, the PL200 were not a proper load for the Jadis.

EDIT: I think the Plinius was a bit "imprisoned" with the RX6 whilst the Jadis was able to shine...

Basses of the Jadis really impressed me...and I wasn't expecting that to be honest

Yes I know...it's always the same story. Most of the dealers for Belgium are actually based in Holland or even Germany sometimes  :wall:

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

....which I'm happy for more technical folk to comment on ...

Indeed, me too. But it appears like a one to one conversation usually when I open a thread on gear I have tried and I am looking for advices Smile

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

If you end up preferring the Jardis and want to match it with some of the speakers mentioned (SF/Kef/Focal etc), you should look at the Jardis DA88S, which should (imo) have enough grunt to cope properly. Apparently they go well with the likes of Proac D40R.

Another make of speaker that goes great with both Jardis models are the OBX-R2s or RWs from Living Voice. I think this might be hard to beat, if you like that seductive sound.

The MF offerings are also a must demo, as I think you might prefer them to the Plinius.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

If you end up preferring the Jardis and want to match it with some of the speakers mentioned (SF/Kef/Focal etc), you should look at the Jardis DA88S, which should (imo) have enough grunt to cope properly. Apparently they go well with the likes of Proac D40R. Another make of speaker that goes great with both Jardis models are the OBX-R2s or RWs from Living Voice. I think this might be hard to beat, if you like that seductive sound. The MF offerings are also a must demo, as I think you might prefer them to the Plinius.

 

Thanks Cno for all support! Smile

I am getting very confused to be honest as I am not sure which sound I prefer. I would like to take the Jadis next to the Plinius and MF and listen...but unfortunately that's not possible.

For now I would put the Jadis on top of Plinis+M8 using my RX6. Also for the price...I might get the Jadis next week whilst I need to plan more carefully the purchase of Plinius + preamp...and anyway I could not get both at the same time as I need to save some cash for the business I am starting also. In that case could I use for now my Vincent SV129 as preamp for example? It has pre-outs. 

Living Audio...I read very good comments on those...I might actually call the dealer (there is one at 40 minutes driving from here) and ask if they have the Jadis...not sure

 

 

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

CnoEvil wrote:

If you end up preferring the Jardis and want to match it with some of the speakers mentioned (SF/Kef/Focal etc), you should look at the Jardis DA88S, which should (imo) have enough grunt to cope properly. Apparently they go well with the likes of Proac D40R. Another make of speaker that goes great with both Jardis models are the OBX-R2s or RWs from Living Voice. I think this might be hard to beat, if you like that seductive sound. The MF offerings are also a must demo, as I think you might prefer them to the Plinius.

Why do you think so? In what you think the Plinius combo would differ from the MF one?

Thanks

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RE: Jadis - love at first sight...

It is my opinion that Musical Fidelity currently make the best sounding Class A amps in their price range.

The SA-103 is supposed to give 125W in Class A, weighs 38kg and draws 485 Watts from the mains. Compare that to Musical Fidelity:
AMS 35P (W)....31kg (draws 400W)
AMS 50 (W).....60kg (draws 600W)
AMS 100 (W)...100kg (draws 1200W)

Let's just say I think the MFs will get closer to the sound you are looking for.

The initial confusion is quite natural. Finding the right Hifi is like meeting the right partner...you will just "know". At the level you are prepared to spend, your jaw will be on the floor and time will pass very quickly (like a good first date!).

Since having had an almost exclusive dialogue with you about this over the last while, I have a "seat of the pants" view of the sound you are looking for (always dangerous before the event).

It would be my guess, that at number one, would be the Jadis amp with something like the Living Voice speakers.
This will be such an emotionally musical involving experience, that everything else you listen to, will sound almost mechanical by comparison. It won't be a strictly neutral presentation, but that won't be foremost on your mind, as you are swept away by the sheer passion and beauty of the music.

If you wish to consider more "normal" speakers, I think you would need to go for the DA88, which would sound incredible with the Proacs (or Kefs)...so this would be my 2nd choice for you.

Thirdly I would go with the MA AMS with the SF Cremonas...slightly more neutral (less sugar coated), still incredibly musical but with a bit more excitement and maybe a greater versatility with all genres of music. It would also be easier to live with and maintain, being all solid state.

My fourth choice would be the Inpol with the Kefs

Also don't forget, that none of these suggested pairings will sound right without a good source.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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