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#187817 - 12/13/07 01:01 PM Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Before getting into my views on why and how let me say right at the outset that this is one killer amp. I love amps and have owned many over the years and as I'm reminded from time to time have more than a few around the house.

One thing I'd like to get off my chest is this notion which is expressed far too often around here that a small power supply ie. as found in most receivers is all you really need to produce quality sound. I've posted my views on this perspective which IMO quite frankly is just plain disinformation. (I edited out another word I had for "disinformation" ) In general, I agree that the more efficient your speakers are, the smaller your room, the closer you sit to the speakers, or the lower volumes you listen to then the less power that you will need. However what I am concerned about is high quality sound and if that is the overriding objective there is no getting around having large reserves of power on standby in order to
reproduce peaks cleanly and avoid any nasties from clipping.

How much power is enough you ask? Much more than you think you need is my succinct answer. Let's take a look at some real life situations to put that into perspective so you can appreciate why our good friends at Axiom have devoted such effort and expense to developing the A1400-8.

Generally speaking in most rooms, most amps are not played beyond a few watts nominal at moderate listening levels. It is at peaks such as from loud transients that more power is demanded by the speaker. At higher listening levels which can easily occur on recordings with good dynamic range power amps can clip without a lot of power bandwidth in reserve. The key concept here is that a doubling of wattage is necessary for every 3db increase. So, if the speaker like the M80 is around 91db efficient at one watt, you hear around 81db at 4 metres away, whether your amp is rated at ten watts or 200 or 1400 watts. Now what happens if you play a classical piece with great dynamic range, typically where the dynamic peaks are 15db higher than that 90db average listening level, you require 32 watts above the average power required for that. Even with rock music which typically has lower dynamic range becasue of the hih compression used during recordings, the need for extra power remains since most rock/jazz fans enjoy listening at higher overall levels compared to classical music.

Now let's say you enjoy raising the volume up by say 8 watts when playing a good tune. Then to handle a 15db peak, you would require and additional 256 watts to handle it. If you had a 18db peak , you'd need 512 watts. This all assumes that the amp was fast enough to respond to these increased power demand otherwise you would get slew induced distortion which can be just as annoying as clipping distortion. Also keep in mind that the above example assumes a constant impedance. However the impedance of the speaker load is always changing so power demands will also be affected by such impedance swings. The other thing to keep in mind is that in many amps much of the energy is disippiated as heat so many of the watts produced are "lost". Also its important to note that the power demands of the speaker are rarely linear like in my simplified example which is another reason for a fast high power supply.

Ok I got that off my chest. \:\) So please don't post any comments like... gee I love my receiver and I don't see how a powerful fast separate amp like the a1400-8 can improve my sound.


After hearing and reading so much about the supposed attributes of this "uber" amp I have to admit to getting my usual feeling of healthy scepticism. You know, how it replaces a stack of monoblocs, just like the Bryston 7BSSTs except faster, dynamic power handling, how its able to allocate more power to whatever channel demands more. Is this the amp that can leap tall buildings in a single bound? So after many questions and hearing how good it was from a Floridian friend of mine who bought one, I finally was given one of the lab amps to audition six weeks ago. As it turns out Axiom can only produce two a day of these high quality hand-made amps so I patiently waited for one to become available.

Rather than install it into my HT where it is now, I spent several weeks with it in my stereo rig and went back and forth with by Bryston 4BSSTs and a tube McIntosh c2102 for good measure.



My initial impression when I added the a1400-8 and disconnected the 4bsst was that the amp had taken over my system. Everything sounded...well...effortless. The highs were more transparent and the bass seemed tighter. I also noticed I had to turn down the volume on my preamp because of the higher gain. The Axiom amp also never seemed to get warm to the touch meaning it was very efficient at not losing energy in the form of heat. My woofers seemed to be vibrating visibly faster. There also seemed to be more texture and detail to the sound. When I reinstalled the Bryston everything seemed a tad softer and the bass less tight which was very surprising seeing how the 4bsst delivers 500wpc at 4 ohms. The playing field got balanced when I added a second Bryston 4BSST and bridged each one in mono mode so in effect each Bryston was delivering 1000w per channel into each speaker. It seemed I had found an equivalent setup sonically: one a1400-8 or 2 Bryston 4BSSTs. Arguably the Bryston pair was more powerful seeing how the the 1400-8 was supposedly delivering 700wpc but a later conversation with Tom Cumberland clarified that view ie. if called upon the 1400-8 could deliver more output into each channel and indeed more than 1400watts, and perhaps more importantly the Axiom amp was indeed faster than the Brystons. The slew rate of the A1400-8 is estimated at >80V/microsec while the slew rate on the Bryston SST amp is closer to >60V/microsec. While that may not read like much it does translate into a much faster reponse time when power is required by say a loud bass peak. Net result: tighter bass and clearer highs. However to my ear, the two mon-bridged Brystons and the a1400-8 sounded the same. Too bad for me that my Bryston pair costs over twice as much as the Axiom amp.

As November went by I had the opportunity to listen to all sorts of different music and the conclusion above held up no matter if it was classical, jazz
, rock or other genres. I would add rap but I have had a hard time appreciating that music though my kids love to play it on my stereo rig.

To double check my impressions I lent the Axiom amp to a friend of mine for a few days of comparison. A shot of his system appears below. As you can see he is a big fan of McIntsh gear and power hungry Dynaudio speakers.



He too was sceptical that such a light amp could drive his speakers. I enjoyed watching the look on his face when we played a fast moving orchestral piece by Chabrier. He mentioned he had never seen his woofers move so quickly with as much detail. Now to be fair he had just sold his tube amps and this was the first real powerful solid state amp in his system. Still for a classical aficionado like him he was quite impressed with how well the a1400-8 handled the large dynamic swings. In a word he described it as a "superb" fast powerful amp. He way overestimated the cost of the amp by the way.

When I picked up the amp and before installing it in the HT I thought I would see how it compared to my tube McIntosh mc2102which does 100wpc. As expected it didn't have the lush midrange of the tube amp but then again it produced the low frequencies and detailed highs with ease compared to the Mac. Interestingly at high volume even though the Mac was likely clipping, I didn't find the "soft" clipping of the tubes objectionable compared to the clipping of an underpowered solid state amp. Needless to say I have never been able to clip the Axiom amp.

Currently the 1400-8 resides in my HT where it has replaced an Outlaw 770 7 channel amp with 300wpc. Everything seems more open and transparent with DVDs. When I recalibrated I had to lower the speaker levels by 3db. Sound effects and musical scores just seem livelier and more natural. I'll post some more comments and shots later about how it does with HT. \:\)



Edited by Amie (12/13/07 11:32 PM)
Edit Reason: slew rate

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#187823 - 12/13/07 01:11 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Hey, thanks for your write-up. I may have to get one!

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#187827 - 12/13/07 01:32 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Based on what I heard and similar first hand reports from two friends, that would be a terrific upgrade.
_________________________
John

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#187828 - 12/13/07 01:33 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
Hutzal Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 2102
Loc: Hollywood. (Canadian @ <3)
Very nice review, this should be put up on the A1400-8 page on the main Axiom page.

Mojo is going to have a hard time NOT getting this amp after this review!
_________________________
Producer | Composer
www.robbhutzal.com

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#187835 - 12/13/07 01:51 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hutzal]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Thanks for that kind comment Hutz. I have more to add but my day job requires attention right now. ;\)
_________________________
John

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#187847 - 12/13/07 02:20 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
Yes, John, thanks for the nice review. Robb, believe me I've thought long and hard about it. I just don't know what I'd do with all that power. I can see making use of it when everyone is out of the house but that wouldn't be too often and therefore I can't justify it. But anyone that listens to 4W nominal or more really ought to buy one of these.

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#187850 - 12/13/07 02:52 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Thanks John,

Not only was it a good review but other than what I already knew of the basic laws of wattage vs. db and clipping, it added a lot to my understanding of amp technology.
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#187885 - 12/13/07 05:03 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Murph]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
Thanks John, now I have to get one.....sometime.
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
TTTHHHPPPPPTTTT!

My HT

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#187890 - 12/13/07 05:16 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Yep! I have a rebate coupon that expires end of January... It sounds more and more like I will myself be posting a review of A1400 at some point soon! \:\)

[I am still trying to rationalize this 18-month acceleration of my original plan, but don't tell myself!] ;\)
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#187893 - 12/13/07 05:30 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Well it would be a great addition to any system. The extra air and transparency it brings to any speakers is audible. Its remarkable what a large reserve of clean power does for sound quality at moderate listening levels and for any kind of volume it goes without saying how nice it is to keep distortion out of the mix.

So here is a shot where the A1400-8 currently sits: on top of the disconnected Outlaw 770.



I'm currently running 7 monitors around the HT which are well supplied with power from the big Outlaw amp, a clone of the Sherbourne 2100. I really didn't think there would be much difference. The Outlaw output per channel at 300wps is nearly double the rated requirement of my monitors. The test I used was to start at 15db below reference and replay the same scene while raising volume by 5db increments. I used the forest scene in House of Flying Daggers which has good dynamic range. I started to detect more clarity with the Axiom when I raised volume to -5db and higher. The swishing of leaves and bamboo spears hitting trees seemed more textured. When I played concert DVDs once again the difference was evident in the tight bass, kickdrum, cymbals and orchestra in the case of Andrea Bocelli's Statue of Liberty concert.

In action movies I had a tougher time discerning the difference. I don't know about you but explosions and falling bridges sound the same to me through the speakers...with subs its another story.

Once again the 54lb A1400-8 did not heat up like the 103 lb Outlaw amp. I used to joke that the Outlaw 770 did double duty as a block heater on cold winter nights in the HT. A downside to using the Axiom amp is that I now need to buy a quiet block heater.
_________________________
John

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#187898 - 12/13/07 05:45 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
And at 93% power efficiency, it is also a very ecological move!
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#187901 - 12/13/07 05:47 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16268
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
Somebody needs to run the numbers.

"If every audiophile in the world switched to the new Axiom amp, carbon emmissions would be reduced by X% worldwide."

You'd have a new green market! \:\)
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#187903 - 12/13/07 05:52 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
cameron Offline
veteran

Registered: 09/26/03
Posts: 117
This thread should come with a disclaimer warning. I just heard my wallet cry out in pain.

I seriously want to believe all those here who say that an inexpensive receiver is all you need to get the best out of the m60's for 2 channel music listening. This review makes me question my faith in that...

Problem is, I don't even think my receiver has pre-outs which would of course mean I'd have to buy a new processor as well as an amp.

I'm just going to back away slowly and pretend like I never saw this thread... nothing to see here...

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#187906 - 12/13/07 05:58 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: cameron]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
The problem is you will have dreams about it.....
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
TTTHHHPPPPPTTTT!

My HT

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#187931 - 12/13/07 08:31 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13325
Loc: Iowa
John,

All I can say is thanks! \:\)

You know my situation, and some day I hope I can get one of these amps. At least if I have to sell my Odyssey Mono's, they carry a 20yr tranferable warranty. Truely, I love my Odysseys, one big problem is I don't have much room in my AV opening, and I can only put one in there, as if stacked they get pretty hot. So, I keep one hidden back in the closet out of sight for now.

A black 1400 would look awesome next to my other equipment. I wish they would have a deal where you could pay 0% interest for 3 years. \:\) (hint, hint, Amie. \:\) )
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#187933 - 12/13/07 08:35 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: SirQuack]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
John, excellent write up! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and philosophy on amps.



Oh, and Randy, that 3 year 0% thing is a bad idea. ;\)
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#187947 - 12/13/07 10:43 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: SirQuack]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Randy those Odessey monos are nice amps though they do run hot like many other amps. You know my views on having lots of clean power. No doubt in my mind that you'd experience higher quality sound in that big Portplex HT of yours with the Axiom amp running cool in the rack. \:\)
_________________________
John

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#187948 - 12/13/07 10:55 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Thanks for the review and sharing your thoughts John, sounds like a killer component ... maybe one of these days!

Isn't the one common trait for all digital amps, regardless of make, is the much cooler running temps?
_________________________
Rick
Our Room

smile

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#187949 - 12/13/07 11:09 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Thanks Rick. All class D amps run cooler than the other amp types. With the new digital technology in this amp its effeciency is right at the top of the heap.
_________________________
John

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#187950 - 12/13/07 11:11 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
Well it would be a great addition to any system. The extra air and transparency it brings to any speakers is audible.


Ok, so i AM going to say it.
The observations were all derived from an unbiased A/B blind test right?


And the skepticism rolls on...
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#187954 - 12/13/07 11:20 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Oh yeah. It was a 6 week listening test whereby I wore a blindfold all the time I was at home and threw blankets over all four amps so I couldn't tell which one I was plugging cables into. And you know that amp in the middle of my friends living room. He wasn't allowed to look at it for 5 days in order to make sure he couldn't hear the difference. And my pal in Florida, count him out because he's been listening and staring at his A1400-8 for six months.
_________________________
John

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#187956 - 12/13/07 11:24 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
So, would my audiobytes sound better through this amp?

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#187957 - 12/13/07 11:25 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13325
Loc: Iowa
Don't let it get to you John, there is always someone that thinks we never landed on the moon. \:\) Ok, back on topic.
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#187958 - 12/13/07 11:26 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Mine sound just fine through the amp that was designed for them. ;\)
_________________________
John

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#187962 - 12/13/07 11:33 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
If I had the money I'd drop some down on this amp right now ... our slow winter months is my 'dream' period, I'll be dreaming!
_________________________
Rick
Our Room

smile

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#187963 - 12/13/07 11:34 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

If ya do I want dibbs on that Rotel
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#187964 - 12/13/07 11:35 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Wid]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
You got it big guy, your name (Rotel) is written all over it. \:D
_________________________
Rick
Our Room

smile

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#187966 - 12/13/07 11:39 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

I could biamp my M80s then \:\)
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#187969 - 12/13/07 11:40 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Wid]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
There ya go ... power is a good thing!
_________________________
Rick
Our Room

smile

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#187970 - 12/13/07 11:46 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
For anyone interested in more reading on how much power do you need here are a couple of interesting articles.

http://www.live-audio.com/studyhall/watts.html

http://www.crownaudio.com/amp_htm/amp_info/how_much_power.htm

Both authors recommend amps much higher than the power rating of the speakers to eliminate the likelihood of clipping during peaks. One thing I've noticed is that everyone likes to raise the volume on their equipment every once in a while. Me too, as long as I don't hear distortion.
_________________________
John

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#187972 - 12/13/07 11:52 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13325
Loc: Iowa
Great articles, I'll add them to my website articles page.
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#187992 - 12/14/07 02:14 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
HomeDad Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
John, Great review, before I sold my Aragon 2005 due to space restriction's I always thought having that extra power made a difference when listening to music and movies, even after purchasing a 4806 that has more than enough power for normal listening, but I could never explain it as eloquently as you have. I'm still kicking myself for not getting the Axiom amp at the discounted price when I had the chance twice. Perhaps next year \:\)
_________________________
A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.

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#188028 - 12/14/07 10:51 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: HomeDad]
Joey Offline
old hand

Registered: 06/08/07
Posts: 85
Loc: Rossford, OH
I guess it's the concept of diminishing returns that comes into play for me. My Axiom speakers cost just a little over 3gs a few months ago. My TV, which I purchased over four years ago, cost a little over 4g's (which if purchased today would only be about 2g's. Prices on 61" DLP's have dropped considerably!

My newest receiver cost about $250.00 and the sound is fantastic. I have read many reviews and debates over whether a "better" or more powerful amp makes for better sound. I think it is all personal preference and perception. I don't doubt that the A1400-8 could possibly make my M60's, VP150, QS8's and EP500 sound a little better. (I love Axiom by the way!) But is the difference really worth nearly 4g's??? I mean cm'on, it's still just a digital amplifier with some very good capabilities. Maybe if it had the pre-amp built in it would be worth it. I know that if I could even afford the thing that I would be hard pressed to justify the expense. Hopefully, those of you who have already shelled out the $$$$ are not just looking for an improvement in your sound quality in order to justify spending all that money on an amp.

Excuse me while I put on my asbestos undies. ;\)
_________________________
"Tis better to desire that which you do not have, than to have that which you do not desire!"

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#188037 - 12/14/07 11:05 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Joey]
Hutzal Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 2102
Loc: Hollywood. (Canadian @ <3)
It all depends on your room size and listening habits, and also speaker efficiency. Axiom's amp has a huge market for power hungry speakers and large rooms (AKA Porterplex)
_________________________
Producer | Composer
www.robbhutzal.com

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#188113 - 12/14/07 01:46 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hutzal]
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3889
Loc: Up yonder
I knew I shouldn't have opened this thread...sonofabitch!!!!
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#188114 - 12/14/07 01:47 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Pandora's box?

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#188125 - 12/14/07 02:09 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
Hutzal Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 2102
Loc: Hollywood. (Canadian @ <3)
Mike....layaway...
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Producer | Composer
www.robbhutzal.com

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#188127 - 12/14/07 02:12 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hutzal]
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3889
Loc: Up yonder
Thanks Rob... NO... Must resist... Must RE...SIST.... UUUUGGGGG!!!!
_________________________


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#188128 - 12/14/07 02:13 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
Hutzal Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 2102
Loc: Hollywood. (Canadian @ <3)
Y'know you shoulda ordered it while it was 25% off...what were you thinking?!?!? \:D
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#188130 - 12/14/07 02:18 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hutzal]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
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OK Robb.... Go take a time out with Tom.
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#188131 - 12/14/07 02:19 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hutzal]
RickF Offline
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Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Mike is going to wait until the new Denon blows up ... next week.
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#188132 - 12/14/07 02:24 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
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Richard.... Go join your other smartassed siglings in Time-out! And I'm taking all your SRV CD's away for two weeks.
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#188133 - 12/14/07 02:26 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
Wid Offline
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Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.
It will be nice when Mikey compares the Axiom amp to the Rotel
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#188136 - 12/14/07 02:30 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Wid]
RickF Offline
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Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Be sure to post pics Mike ... pictures are good.

\:\)
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#188138 - 12/14/07 02:31 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Wid]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
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OK… You too Ricky. Go join the other brats and I’m locking the room with Bose Cubes all around out of reach and the Carpenters playing all day.
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#188140 - 12/14/07 02:34 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
RickF Offline
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Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Dang Mike, that's right down Wid's alley ... I'd throw on some rap, that would really do him in. I bet it would sound great on that honkerin' Bose sub.
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#188142 - 12/14/07 02:37 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Joey]
jakeman Offline
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Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
There is much going for receivers as an all in one box solution. I have several but they compromise sound quality in one way or another.

For people into fidelity, separates especially a quality amp offers an optimal way to get better performance from the rest of your gear.

I doubt the A1400-A is targeted at buyers of receivers since a receiver in essence represents a cheaper all in one box compromise. This amp will appeal to people who have gone or are thinking of upgrading to separates.

Based on its performance, it belongs in the same category of the big solid state amps by Krell, Classe, Bryston, McIntosh, and others. If you compare its pricing to those other high performance amps, the price of the Axiom amp looks pretty favourable. It doesn't make much sense to look at the A1400-8 as a product designed to compete with a cheap compromised receiver solution. This product is not for receiver consumers.

I look toward reveivers more as an alternative to a pre-amp which is where their cutting edge feature sets have an advantage. On more than one occasion I have used receiver pre-outs into a separate amp to by-pass the inferior amps found many receivers.
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#188223 - 12/14/07 06:07 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
 Originally Posted By: mdrew
OK Robb.... Go take a time out with Tom.


Then I shouldn't inform you it is only $334/mth or does that make it easier.
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#188236 - 12/14/07 07:20 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
tomtuttle Offline
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Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
It's getting crowded here in "time out".

The Amp Envy is starting to get to me.

Okay, I do have a question about implementation of the PROCESSOR part of that equation, though.

I perceive that there are NOT many affordable, robust pre-amps being marketed, especially compared to the feature sets being delivered in even mid-priced receivers. The newer receivers regularly mentioned around here (Denon, Onkyo, others) are VERY full-featured processors that also happen to include an amplifier section in which we may or may not be interested.

Now, conventional upgrade path wisdom is that a person could use one of these full-featured receivers as a pre-pro with one of these wonderful amps. That makes sense to me. However, simply not using the amps in the receiver doesn't remove them from the receiver chassis. Typically, the physical separation of the processor from the amplifier is cited as an important component of cleaning up the signal path and hearing the angels' wings beat.

So, for you engineer types, does simply NOT USING the amplifier in the receiver meaningfully (audibly?) diminish the amount of electro-wavy interference introduced to the signal path, or is it really in fact necessary to get a dedicated, amplifier-free processor in order to reap the benefits of sonic bliss?

If somebody at least understands what I'm flailing around at, please chime in.
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#188239 - 12/14/07 08:08 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: SirQuack]
chesseroo Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: sirquack
Don't let it get to you John, there is always someone that thinks we never landed on the moon. \:\) Ok, back on topic.

If someone actually says their A1400 amp somehow put them on the moon i'm really going to type alot.
\:\/
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#188240 - 12/14/07 08:10 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Joey]
chesseroo Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: Joey
But is the difference really worth nearly 4g's??? I mean cm'on, it's still just a digital amplifier with some very good capabilities.

Well considering it does power EIGHT channels as well...
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#188242 - 12/14/07 08:21 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: tomtuttle]
jakewash Offline
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 Originally Posted By: tomtuttle


Now, conventional upgrade path wisdom is that a person could use one of these full-featured receivers as a pre-pro with one of these wonderful amps. That makes sense to me. However, simply not using the amps in the receiver doesn't remove them from the receiver chassis. Typically, the physical separation of the processor from the amplifier is cited as an important component of cleaning up the signal path and hearing the angels' wings beat.

So, for you engineer types, does simply NOT USING the amplifier in the receiver meaningfully (audibly?) diminish the amount of electro-wavy interference introduced to the signal path, or is it really in fact necessary to get a dedicated, amplifier-free processor in order to reap the benefits of sonic bliss?

If somebody at least understands what I'm flailing around at, please chime in.


It is my understanding that the Transformers, Powersupplies and such still cause issues in the AVR's pre/pro system, which is why it is recommended to go the seperate route. Now if you happen to have an AVR with preouts it will still let you use the extra power available in a seperate amp right away and then buy the seperate pre/pro later when they finally catch up with all the bells and whistles.

I don't have any preouts on my Denon so I am out of luck, any which way I look at it \:\(
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#188244 - 12/14/07 08:27 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
tomtuttle Offline
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Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
Jason, I'm the same preoutless Denon boat as you are; I was just looking for some theoretical backup. Thanks!
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#188257 - 12/14/07 09:43 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: tomtuttle]
Mojo Offline
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Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
Tom,

Do you get a better picture when you separate the LCD control printed circuit board from the LCD tuner printed circuit board in an LCD TV? It's total nonsense my friend. A well-designed integrated receiver cannot be audibly discriminated from well-designed separates when operated within spec. Heck, I "proved" that a crappy Sony 2W boombox couldn't be discriminated from my 90W+ Denon feeding my 80s when both were operated within the boombox's spec. Now of course if you put a shiny, smooth, Canadian beaver on top of one of the components...well...then all bets are off \:\) .

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#188307 - 12/15/07 04:12 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
jakeman Offline
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Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
This receiver centric mania is very strange to say the least. While I fully understand that in many cases it is the best economical alternative and it does usually represent the best alternative for new codecs and formats, to suggest receivers are on par with the acoustical performance of a powerful amp and well implemented pre-amp??

I'm not going to go over the problems with one box solutions again. They are relatively cheap and that is great. I own pioneer, HK, sherwood, and sansui receivers. They all serve a purpose but none of them are great reproducers of quality sound.

They all clip and distort but maybe I'm more sensitive to that than most people. One thing is for sure there is no way anyone with a receiver alone is maximising the performance of the great Axiom speakers like the M80s.

To some it may represent diminishing returns and that is understandable. But in the absense of budgetary considerations it seems rather foolish to ignore the inherent engineering, design and other problems created by not going with separate preamp and amp.

What I find interesting is that once people experience separates the rarely go back and the ones in denial have never used separate components. In any event the axiom amp is not meant to appeal to the "receiver is all you need" crowd. It is clearly aimed at a niche striving for higher quality sound and willing to pay more than receiver prices for the improved performance.

Not meaning to burst any bubbles as I'm sure that there are many applications where a good receiver works just fine. I just don't like to see things blurred. Better quality sound often requires paying up for arguably diminishing levels of performance.

And there is no denying the A1400-8 is a terrific breakthrough amp for those concerned about quality amps and separate components.
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#188308 - 12/15/07 04:24 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
RickF Offline
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Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
... "What I find interesting is that once people experience separates the rarely go back and the ones in denial have never used separate components." ...

And are often the most outspoken against using them.

John, seems to me one of the problems going with separates all the way is finding a good processor. I'm using an HK AVR635 as a processor via the Rotel 1080 amp for the 80s but am looking to upgrade somewhere in the not too distant future ... what would you suggest as a good (great!) processor?
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#188317 - 12/15/07 10:11 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
Mojo Offline
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Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
As I've said somewhere else on these boards, anyone who is listening at 4W nominal, is kidding themselves if they use an integrated receiver. An A1400 is an absolute must! But, for someone like me, that listens at a half watt nominal the large majority of the time, separates would be a waste of money.

I think a lot of it has to do with the room and distance from the speakers. If the room is highly damped and you are sitting far back from your speakers (say, more than eight feet), you will need more than a half watt. Even in my relatively bright room, if I stand 15 feet back, I need to turn it way up and I'm sure (although I've never tested) that I could benefit from high power. But I sit 8 feet away. A watt nominal is darned plenty. As a matter of fact, if I turn it up too loud, my room dynamics blur the sound.

So far, the only empirical data I have is my boombox/Denon test. But I remain open to the idea of being proved wrong. I'm still waiting to get together with my buddy so that we can listen to his 300W into 4 Ohm Sansui through my 80s and compare to the Denon at the same SPL. And I also want to test using his Sansui massive pre-amp too. And then I want to take my 80s to his place (which is highly damped) and compare there too.

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#188323 - 12/15/07 11:07 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
chesseroo Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
This receiver centric mania is very strange to say the least. While I fully understand that in many cases it is the best economical alternative and it does usually represent the best alternative for new codecs and formats, to suggest receivers are on par with the acoustical performance of a powerful amp and well implemented pre-amp??


I've done an A/B test, long ago, with a Parasound Halo amp and our Onkyo 797 receiver.
The three people who tried the test could not tell any difference. We even used individual frequencies from an audio test disc aside from music.

Let's not confuse the really cheaper, lower end receivers that have limited power supplies and/or features which may restrict the sound quality they can produce, with some of the midrange receivers or higher that have at least quality components in them (e.g. HTIB 'receivers' vs. a $500 Denon).

I have a Cambridge Audio receiver in our main room at the moment (for its switching features mainly) but it doesn't have a 'direct' mode selection, only stereo or other DSPs (DD, DPL, etc.). Anyone who thinks that is a quality receiver would be correct, for its build quality, but sound quality it wouldn't compare to a separate amp and pre-amp combo solely because of the 'direct' mode to which i refer.
If someone didn't know that was a difference and did a subjective comparison, well then that's only one example of how these rumours of receivers vs. separates gets started, then snowballs.

As long as the audio signal is not engineered in the electronics by going through filters for a design reason, a receiver will play sound equal to an amp, preamp combo.
Any test of a frequency sweep with these equipment pieces should show a flat frequency response across the spectrum (power specific artefacts like clipping excluded). If they don't, you may as well be using tube amps since the electronics are then truly colouring the sound.
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#188324 - 12/15/07 11:08 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
bridgman Online   content
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5355
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
Tom did ask a good question, and I don't think we have answered it yet. [EDIT -- of course while I was typing this Chesseroo *did* start to answer it ;)]

If one of the "problems" of a receiver over separates is the fluctuating load from the power amplifier resulting in a less clean power supply to the pre-pro sections of the receiver, does that specific problem largely go away if the amplifier portion of the receiver is idle as a result of using an outboard power amp ? I think the answer is yes but I don't have any hard information on the relative contribution of the different "problems" to not-quite-audio-nirvana.

I will say that I am extremely pleased to see all this attention being paid to big-ass power amplifiers again. I would argue that "effortless reserves of power" make the difference more than physical separation from the pre-pro stages (if Axiom made a receiver based on the 1400-8 I bet it would sound mighty fine), but I have always felt that a powerful, high quality power amp made a noticeable difference in the overall sound quality.

Having said that, I think we all agree that UP TO A POINT spending extra money on better speakers will deliver more "enjoyment for the dollar" than upgrading electronics. The question is where you go when you already have very good speakers, and in that case making sure you have enough clean power to drive the speakers through the peaks at the highest levels you play can make a real difference.

In the meantime I just don't crank the volume up so high and am perfectly happy with my receiver.


Edited by bridgman (12/15/07 11:15 AM)

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#188325 - 12/15/07 11:11 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
chesseroo Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: Mojo

I think a lot of it has to do with the room and distance from the speakers. If the room is highly damped and you are sitting far back from your speakers (say, more than eight feet), you will need more than a half watt.

There is something to be said about the power requirements of transient requirements though.
Yes a few watts or less on average are used, but for those short burst of much larger energy requirements, the capabilities of a standalone amp can go much further than most receivers.
Power capacity, big reserves.

I once tested out a Coda amp. I was playing music, turned off the amp, left the rest of the system on playing music and the speakers took about 2-3 seconds to drain the remaining power from the amp reserves at the original volume.
I was quite impressed.
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#188327 - 12/15/07 11:21 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
bridgman Online   content
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5355
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
>>power specific artefacts like clipping excluded

I suspect the audible difference between receiver and separates would be almost entirely power related, ie when the system was running at or near the design limits, ie when the power supply voltage is starting to droop on the power peaks and when instantaneous peaks are either starting to clip the output stages of the power amp or are being limited by upstream circuitry. That's when the fun starts and the differences between two "ruler flat" designs start to appear... and where a design which simply has enough power reserves that you aren't *at* the limits yet can have a real advantage.

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#188329 - 12/15/07 11:37 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: bridgman]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17755
Loc: NoVA
I like the way this discussion is shaping up. Not too much sniping from either party (if there are parties).

I'm really not sure what to think on this issue--sure, I use a receiver with my M80s (mainly because of economics and WAF), but I also don't really crank them at all. 75-80dB is quite loud for me (music-wise), and probably wouldn't happen when my wife was at home. What I've never really been able to determine is whether an external amp (much less one that I could afford) would improve the sound that I experience. Not that I'm likely to do anything about it at this point--I'd much rather be able to buy a house.
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#188340 - 12/15/07 12:27 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
 Originally Posted By: chesseroo
 Originally Posted By: Mojo

I think a lot of it has to do with the room and distance from the speakers. If the room is highly damped and you are sitting far back from your speakers (say, more than eight feet), you will need more than a half watt.

There is something to be said about the power requirements of transient requirements though.
Yes a few watts or less on average are used, but for those short burst of much larger energy requirements, the capabilities of a standalone amp can go much further than most receivers.
Power capacity, big reserves.


Sure, I agree in principle with what you're saying. But take my half Watt nominal case for example. I have 23dB of clean headroom from my 90W Denon at half Watt nominal. Even at 1 Watt, I have 21dB and at 2W I still have 18dB. Why would I need more? Now during the times when no one is home and I end up "cranking" it, I know I could use more than 90W especially on recordings that preserve dynamic range. So for those that have it turned up to 4W or so (Randy would be one because of his large, damped room), you NEED an A1400...or 2 \:\) .

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#188353 - 12/15/07 01:07 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
 Originally Posted By: BrotherBob
... "What I find interesting is that once people experience separates the rarely go back and the ones in denial have never used separate components." ...

And are often the most outspoken against using them.

John, seems to me one of the problems going with separates all the way is finding a good processor. I'm using an HK AVR635 as a processor via the Rotel 1080 amp for the 80s but am looking to upgrade somewhere in the not too distant future ... what would you suggest as a good (great!) processor?



Rick, as usual it depends what you are looking for. The latest Integra and Onkyo processor come loaded with the latest bells and whistles including the ability to decode TrueDD and HDMI1.3a. I'm thinking of upgrading to one of those mainly to get the audio bitstream directly from my Toshiba XA2. I also like the fact they use Burr-Brown DACs and the Reon chip for video. The internal circuitry and power supply are supposed to be very quiet with minimal RF indicating the designers have really paid attention to insulating interference and heat.
The latest NAD also comes with all the latest goodies but is more expensive. I believe the Integra 9.8 is the best choice for the money but its hard to find. The upcoming Sherwood processor is also looking good and it should be released in the next few months. We might be able to buy them through Axiom since they are the only online supplier.

At the moment, I'm using a 2 year old Arcam AVP700. Its a remarkably quiet preamp with analog inputs so I can process the latest formats in the HDDVD player. It has a simple HDMI video switcher with little upscaling capability which I don't use anyway.

There are long wait times for the Integra 9.8 processor and its Onkyo cousin so a great alternative would be a processor with analog inputs. There are many choices. Krell, Anthem, Rotel, are just a few which can be bought at great prices now since the don't have the latest decoders.

For stereo only duty I'm a big fan of tube McIntosh preamps like the C220 or the solid state C46. The Cary Audio preamps are also very nice. I'm currently using a C220 in my stereo. The list of excellent 2 channel pre-amps is a long one.
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#188354 - 12/15/07 01:11 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
bridgman Online   content
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5355
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
Yep, that's the problem in a nutshell. When you start cranking the 'ol volume control up your power requirements go up VERY fast.

Here's my dream product -- an "on demand" 1400-8, same idea as HP and others were promoting a year or two ago in the IT world. Start with a midrange receiver and an inexpensive 1400-8 with only two channels enabled. As your power requirements and/or budget permits, call Axiom with a credit card and have additional channels switched on.

Failing that, an 800-3 would still be mighty nice.

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#188359 - 12/15/07 01:21 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3889
Loc: Up yonder
 Originally Posted By: BrotherBob
... "What I find interesting is that once people experience separates the rarely go back and the ones in denial have never used separate components." ...

And are often the most outspoken against using them.

John, seems to me one of the problems going with separates all the way is finding a good processor. I'm using an HK AVR635 as a processor via the Rotel 1080 amp for the 80s but am looking to upgrade somewhere in the not too distant future ... what would you suggest as a good (great!) processor?



Richard,

Currently, there are no good alternatives for a true Pre amp that will handle HDMI audio and all the new codecs. What I mean by ‘true’, is one that does not incorporate a video processor of some sort into the data stream. If one were to go with a ‘true’ separate system, they would also use an external video processor.

Having said that, there are two Pre amps worth a serious look. The Integra 9.8 and its Onkyo Pro Sibling, the 885. Unfortunately, these two use a Reon video processing chip, and it’s been confirmed that the reon does alter the video stream, unless you completely bypass it, and when you do that, you loose the menu system.

Anthem’s AMV40 is another good choice, but it’s limited to HMDI 1.1 and it does not handle all the new codec’s…perfectly.

Cary Audio had a relatively new PrePro, the 11a, but….it must be used with their, soon to be released, stand alone video processor, the 11v. The 11v will have HDMI 1.3 and it will be the machine that decodes the new audio codec’s. After the 11v decodes them, it will send the unpacked PCM data to the 11a for further processing via its own proprietary, Cary audio Link cable. A weird and not so elegant solution….

So….In my opinion, the Denon 3808 is the best, most cost conscience choice for use with an external amp. That is why I went with it. It’s not too expensive, handles the new audio formats perfectly, have a GUI that works perfectly with any video stream, and the Video processor can be turned off….but yet you can still use the GUI.

That sums it up for right now, but I’m pretty sure that within 12 months, there will be numerous choices.

Oh, I almost forgot. McIntosh is in the HDMI / HD game now. They recently started shipping some very, very serious contenders. But in typical McIntosh fashion, don’t look if you don’t have about thirty grand.
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#188431 - 12/15/07 10:54 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
 Originally Posted By: chesseroo

As long as the audio signal is not engineered in the electronics by going through filters for a design reason, a receiver will play sound equal to an amp, preamp combo.
Any test of a frequency sweep with these equipment pieces should show a flat frequency response across the spectrum (power specific artefacts like clipping excluded). If they don't, you may as well be using tube amps since the electronics are then truly colouring the sound.


Unfortunately its never quite that simple. There is much more to excellent amplification than power bandwidth. Risetime, slew rate, damping factor, intermodulation distortion, signal to noise and so forth all come into play. I have yet to see a receiver amp that compares favourable on all those points compared to a capable separate amp let alone address concerns regarding RF and the deleterious effects of heat on the circuit topology, noise and linearity.

Tube amps can be an exellent addition to any system. In the midrange in particular their additional harmonics are much closer to replicating the sound of musical instruments and voices than solid state amps. Most are as linear in term of frequency response as solid state amps.

When you have had time to properly assess separates and amps through long listening sessions please post your impressions.


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#188554 - 12/16/07 09:17 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
tomtuttle Offline
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Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
Well, in their typical fashion, Bridgman and mdrew got closest to my intent. I guess it boils down to the marketing and product placement. If the Denon 3808 is the current shiznit for a processor, why doesn't Denon or somebody else come out with that package without the amplifier in it for less money? I find it hard to believe there is no market.
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#188567 - 12/16/07 10:33 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: tomtuttle]
bridgman Online   content
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5355
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
You couldn't sell it for LESS money. That would destroy the fabric of the universe. Separates have to cost more.

More, MORE, MORE !!!!

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#188570 - 12/16/07 11:00 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
haylo75 Offline
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Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 131
Loc: Kansas City, MO USA
 Originally Posted By: mdrew

Having said that, there are two Pre amps worth a serious look. The Integra 9.8 and its Onkyo Pro Sibling, the 885. Unfortunately, these two use a Reon video processing chip, and it’s been confirmed that the reon does alter the video stream, unless you completely bypass it, and when you do that, you loose the menu system.


If by menu system you mean the OSD when changing volume, yes you lose that, but the setup menus are still accessible via HDMI output to your display regardless of whether the Reon is being bypassed or not. I use the 9.8 in this fashion and it works for me as I can see the current volume level on the unit's display directly in front of me. Mounting the 9.8 in a hidden location and bypassing the Reon would certainly leave one guessing at the current volume level.
_________________________
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#188574 - 12/16/07 11:37 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: tomtuttle]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Tom, people have been asking Denon for years to come out with a separate processor to no avail. Methinks margins are higher on receivers since processors can be matched with any other company's amp. But with Onkyo's new processor making such a splash at that low price point (see the excellent Secrets review) I believe its only a matter of time before Denon, Yamaha, Pioneer, Marantz and others come out with their own prepros.

That article has a brief discussion of the advantages of processors over receivers sound quality but the part on THD or IMD is not significant between the Integra receivers and the 9.8. The main difference comes from the removal of heat and RF near the audio circuitry and the use of an amp with better rise time, slew rate, damping factor, bigger capacitors and more power. I've never owned Denons however I've used my H/K receiver as a processor on occasion. I did notice an improvement in dynamics and resolution with the bigger outboard amp, in this case the Outlaw 770.

That Integra 9,8 combined with the A1400-8 has me salivating.
_________________________
John

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#188583 - 12/17/07 12:47 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Ken.C]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: kcarlile
I like the way this discussion is shaping up. Not too much sniping from either party (if there are parties).


Someone is having a party?
I think Ken is horribly confused....again.

 Quote:
Unfortunately its never quite that simple. There is much more to excellent amplification than power bandwidth. Risetime, slew rate, damping factor, intermodulation distortion, signal to noise and so forth all come into play. I have yet to see a receiver amp that compares favourable on all those points compared to a capable separate amp let alone address concerns regarding RF and the deleterious effects of heat on the circuit topology, noise and linearity.

All technical jargon which means little when any unit is played within its specs so yes, it is that simple.

A frequency response graph is what humans hear as measured by devices more accurate than the human ear. If a frequency sweep is measured as ruler flat, wherein do all your listed variables make any difference?
They don't, unless as i iterated to, there is something out of spec such as playing the unit too loud and into a clipping zone.

 Quote:
Tube amps can be an exellent addition to any system. In the midrange in particular their additional harmonics are much closer to replicating the sound of musical instruments and voices than solid state amps. Most are as linear in term of frequency response as solid state amps.

No comment.
A whole other can of worms.

 Quote:
When you have had time to properly assess separates and amps through long listening sessions please post your impressions.

I have many times in the past, years before you came onboard.
But thanks for playing.


Edited by chesseroo (12/17/07 12:55 AM)
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#188601 - 12/17/07 07:19 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
 Originally Posted By: chesseroo

All technical jargon which means little when any unit is played within its specs so yes, it is that simple.

A frequency response graph is what humans hear as measured by devices more accurate than the human ear. If a frequency sweep is measured as ruler flat, wherein do all your listed variables make any difference?
They don't, unless as i iterated to, there is something out of spec such as playing the unit too loud and into a clipping zone.


Really? The problem with your view here is that you presume linear FR is all that matters to what we perceive as good quality sound . It would follow from your statement that all amps will sound the same when driven within their limits (big qualifier but let's set that aside for a moment).

The other list of variables above have a significant impact on sound and that is where a side by side comparison comes in handy. It used to be that THD and IMD were distinguishing factors but these days most any name amp has respectable distortion numbers below clipping. Check the signal to noise ratios, quieter amps help us hear the micro-dynamics and nuances. Rise time and slew rate measure time, important to how tight bass sounds...some amps do sound tighter than others and again that comes out in a side by side comparison. Damping factor not important, huh? The designer better match that spec right if he wants good control of the drivers. In addition, size and number of capacitors also effect things. This isn't meant as an all encompassing list but it really isn't as simple as linear response within spec. Geez if it was that simple any old beat up pro amp or small receiver amp would do the job.

 Quote:
 Quote:
Tube amps can be an exellent addition to any system. In the midrange in particular their additional harmonics are much closer to replicating the sound of musical instruments and voices than solid state amps. Most are as linear in term of frequency response as solid state amps.

No comment.
A whole other can of worms.
Yes and subject of perhaps a different thread. I have tube amps as well. When properly setup they can sound wonderful. Besides the pleasant sounding second order harmonics the tubes generate, tube amps don't "hard clip", they let you down easily so you get less of that aweful distortion when you max out the amp. There are other features which aren't as good as SS amps.

 Quote:
 Quote:
When you have had time to properly assess separates and amps through long listening sessions please post your impressions.

I have many times in the past, years before you came onboard.
But thanks for playing.


Always appreciate another perspective especially when it doesn't contain sweeping generalizations. One thing about audio, there are few absolutes. \:\)
_________________________
John

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#188648 - 12/17/07 03:43 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
PeterChenoweth Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/23/03
Posts: 1349
Loc: Jacksonville, IL
So now that Axiom produces an amp, where have all the amps-don't-matter crowd gone? I'd expect them to be out in force on this thread, especially when someone has the audacity to conjecture that they can tell a blindfolded difference between amps! ;\) <--note the wink, guys!
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#188652 - 12/17/07 04:31 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: PeterChenoweth]
Worfzara Offline
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Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
My friend and I were discussing the cost effectiveness of the A1400-8 and we don't see the value at almost 4 grand. Clearly this amp is for the very few.

Don't get me wrong, it's a sweet unit, but as Peter says, all amps sound the same, I can buy a 200watt 7 channel amp from Outlaw for about half the price. With 200 watts or Outlaw power, I get lots of headroom in my 4000 cubic room. More than I will ever need. I would be surprised if anyone could hear a difference between the Outlaw and the Axiom. And it surely it wouldn't be a 2 grand difference.

I am surprised and disappointed at the price point that Axiom has chosen for this unit. Axiom is a company that develops high quality audio components (speakers) for a price that mortals can afford (even their top speaker, the M80, is affordable by most). I hope this is not a trend for the future from this company.

It would have been nice to see a 5 channel unit for around the 2 grand mark for those of us still using 5.1 with no plans to upgrade.

I know never is a long time, but I probably won’t ever have one of these in my HT room at that price point.
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paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
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#188655 - 12/17/07 04:56 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I have the Outlaw 770 and the A1400-A sitting one on top of the other in my HT right now. I have gone back and forth and the A1400-A is more revealing, with more transparent highs and slightly tighter bass. The more relevant comparison is not the Outlaw but the Bryston amps from a performance perspective . If you check the price of any of the Bryston larger SST series amps you would conclude that the A1400-A is well priced.
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#188658 - 12/17/07 05:01 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13325
Loc: Iowa
I don't think $500 per amp is a bad price, actually pretty cheap, especially for a Class D amp with this much power reserve.


Edited by sirquack (12/17/07 05:02 PM)
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#188664 - 12/17/07 05:10 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
John, since you have both, what is the speed (rise time) of the Outlaw 770? The A1400 is rated (in its manual) at an impressive 8 microseconds to reach 500W. That surpasses 96Khz sampling rate.
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#188666 - 12/17/07 05:14 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Worfzara Offline
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Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
I guess it is a question of; is the increased sound transparancy and detail worth the extra 2 grand. Only each individual can answer that question.

I still would like to see a cheaper 5 channel version.

Paul
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paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
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#188673 - 12/17/07 05:28 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: SirQuack]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Price for amps is like price for any audio equipment. It depends on the quality of what you are buying compared to other similar components. For this much quality you would pay nearly twice as much to buy the comparable Bryston/Krell/McIntosh amp. Having lived with this amp for a while I'd say price looks fair to me. I'd like some comparisons if anyone has an amp in this price range that produces this much clean fast power and its unique ability to transfer energy to any channel. For sure receiver users won't pay up for it but that's no surprise, but others who like top separates will check it out.
_________________________
John

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#188678 - 12/17/07 05:39 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
For sure receiver users won't pay up for it but that's no surprise, but others who like top separates will check it out.


Isn't this the market they are going for, not those of us that only dream we have that kind of money for one component.\:\(
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Jason
-----------------
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#188679 - 12/17/07 05:40 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Eric, a lot of manufacturers don't release the rise time data because its more definitive than slew rate which some manufactuers can fudge. Axiom's rise time is very high at 8 microsseconds to reach 500W. Also keep in mind not many amps can reach 500w. So the fallback is slew rate which is much lower at 50v/microsec in the Outlaw 770.
_________________________
John

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#188680 - 12/17/07 05:46 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Er... just to clarify... "very high at 8 micro" is negative, suggesting that it is commonly UNDER 8 microsec. Was that what you meant or was it the other way around?
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#188682 - 12/17/07 05:49 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Actually, they are very consistent. Most (if not all) of their products is anywhere from 30-60% of the price of their competitor for an equivalent product. With the capabilities of this product (working out of a single 15A circuit), it IS less or around half the price of those McIntosh and all products .
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#188725 - 12/17/07 09:11 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Thanks for the catch Eric. I meant to say the rise time is "very FAST at 8 microsec". Rise time measures how fast the amp goes from 10% of rated power to 90% rated power. It's like accelerating a car. Other amp manufacturers don't usually post that stat so slew rates are more common. I mentioned in the OP that the Bryston has a slew rate of 60V/microsec and the Axiom slew rate is >80V/microsec, while the Outlaw has only 50V/microsec.
_________________________
John

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#188727 - 12/17/07 09:13 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
So what you guys keep telling me is, I need to tell my wife the kitchen cabinets can wait, I NEED a new amp!
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
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#188729 - 12/17/07 09:22 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
Jason, your banker may be able to help you out with this predicament \:\) .

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#188735 - 12/17/07 09:37 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Excellent, John. As you may have surmised from other posts, the arrival of the A1400 on the market is about to make me accelerate my 2-year plan for a high-quality power amp fairly soon (because the A1400 is less that half what I would have had to pay for what I want with even more power/flexibility).

So it is nice to confirm that the A1400 is as good as I thought it was, based on those data. Since I only listen to classical music (SACDs/DVD-a in preference) most of the time at -7db, or even sometimes at "live" volume, consistency, speed and power are my most important parameters. That is why I can't wait for that 700W/4Ohm and 8 microsecond!

It's still is a LOT OF MONEY!!! But, I am the type that buys once for a long time, so it is not too bad... \:\)
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#188753 - 12/17/07 11:27 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Eric. You are going to love how the A1400-A makes the music sound more natural and transparent. Classical music tunes are usually the most carefully engineered recordings with the highest dynamic range. If you want to "be there" the way the engineer intended, you need to be able to cleanly reproduced those peaks and transients. We keep talking about dynamic headroom and I remembered an excellent article which Alan wrote that I highly recommend reading again. I especially like the way he describes how important dynamic headroom is when reproducing piano and orchestra.

http://www.axiomaudio.com/dynamicheadroom.html

http://www.axiomaudio.com/power.html
_________________________
John

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#188778 - 12/18/07 10:10 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Worfzara Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
I have the Outlaw 770 and the A1400-A sitting one on top of the other in my HT right now. I have gone back and forth and the A1400-A is more revealing, with more transparent highs and slightly tighter bass.


When you stated that the Axiom sounded more trasparent and detailed than the Outlaw, what volume level in dB were you refering to? Or is that true at all volumes?
_________________________
paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
Denon AVR-990

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#188789 - 12/18/07 10:44 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
With music it was more apparent at moderate to high volumes. With HT I found it harder to discern but on loud passages the difference was apparent as well. For HT I keep the Arcam at around 80db.

A problem with my Outlaw 770 and many other amps is that a significant amount of the watts specified get lost as heat. Just about every amp I have known are just not as efficient as the A1400-8. I remember reading some time ago at the Audioholics forums that the 770 is only 40% efficient or 60% of the energy gets dissipitated as heat. That means that of the 1800W they brag there really is only 720W ( 40% x 1800W) of available power or only 720W/7 = 103W per channel. There is no way it will output the spec'd 200W@ 8ohms into my speakers. Which means more clipping at peaks during intense movie scenes or in concert DVDs.

I'm not knocking Outlaw just pointing out a big problem with interpreting the power numbers thrown around by many amp manufactuerers including or especially the ones in receivers. While the lab numbers are worth knowing, without knowing the efficiency of the amp its performance will not be as much as you think.

Now lets look at the A1400-A. Because of their brilliant engineering using only Class D, it is rated at 92% efficient though because of Axioms usually understated conservative approach I questioned it and they fessed up that the efficiency is more like 96% or 1344 available watts. With all 7 channels going under the same simulataneus load, and ignoring for now the Axiom amp's unique ability to route more power to whatever channel demands it, the A1400-8 has 192W available. Also note that if you run fewer channels there is even more power available per channel ie 267W for 5 channels while the Outlaw never changes from 102W. The Axiom amp will likely do more but its limited by the typical 15 amp house circuit.

Then their is the speed of the amps. The Axiom amp has far better slew rate and rise time. It also benefits from how the capacitors are arrayed with different sized caps while the Outlaw has 7 same sized 22,600 uF of capacitance per channel (158,200 uF total). Even though the total capacitance of the Axiom is slighly less at 140,000 uF because it has different sized caps it can respond faster to the input signal. That means more clearly defined transients and higher resolution sound.

The A1400-8 also benefits from uniquely designed silicone output transistors proprietary to Axiom. On this point, I have had better luck trying to acquire a key to Fort Knox.

Anyway, the Axiom amp is a big step up in performance compared to the Outlaw. Having said that the Outlaw its a respectable amp for the price.



_________________________
John

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#188793 - 12/18/07 10:56 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
For HT performance, do you have HD-DVD or Blue-Ray to see if that's the reason why the difference is harder to spot?
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#188794 - 12/18/07 10:58 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I use a toshiba HD-DVD XA2. It is audible like I said. However I can more easily spot problems when listening to music. Maybe I need to hear more explosions. ;\)
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John

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#188797 - 12/18/07 11:05 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
XA2... Cool! I have the mere A30 (I had a A20 prior, but it died).

Thanks for the info.
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#188800 - 12/18/07 11:21 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Worfzara Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
Thanks John

I have tried many power amps between the $500 and $2000 range including Rotel, NAD, Outlaw, and some pro amps including Audio Trak and Inter-m. Some of these had standard transformers, some with upgraded toroidal transformers. To my ears they all sounded the same. The Rotel seemed to dissipate almost no heat, and the Audio Trak gets as hot as a George Forman Grill. But all sounded similar, if not identical, at least to my ears.

However, I have never listened to a class D amp before.
_________________________
paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
Denon AVR-990

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#188805 - 12/18/07 11:53 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I find the more powerful better designed amps generally use better materials and circuits. The difference is most obvious musicically in bass peaks and other transient reproduction of cymbal hits, piano notes, kick drum etc. Over the years I gravitated to the larger amps in the Bryston line for that reason.

One of my favourites was a 14BSST which I sold two years ago to a guy who was underpowering some Maggies 3.6 with a Classe amp. Instead I picked up the 4BSST pair. I can hear the difference between the single 4BSST and the Outlaw, and the A-1400-8 and one 4BSST but its a tossup between the pair of 4BSSTs and the A-1400-8. No surprise there since the a1400-8 got its inspiration from a pair of 7BSSTs.
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#188830 - 12/18/07 02:05 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Lorenzo1000 Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/07/04
Posts: 537
Loc: Winterpeg
Audiogon

Not trying to advertise this guy's sale but it seems a little weird to me to be selling this, plus he's in the UK. I wonder if Axiom has shipped any of these amps to the UK yet?
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#188834 - 12/18/07 02:10 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Lorenzo1000]
Worfzara Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
I didn't expect to see that this soon.

Interesting.
_________________________
paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
Denon AVR-990

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#188835 - 12/18/07 02:16 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Lorenzo1000]
EFalardeau Offline
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Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
"Ship from 28lbs from UK". If that's the weight, then this is a hoax (weight is 54lbs).
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#188840 - 12/18/07 02:47 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
Worfzara Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
I wonder if that 28lbs should be 28 Kilograms. Which would be 61 lbs, very close to 54 lbs of the actual unit.
_________________________
paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
Denon AVR-990

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#188844 - 12/18/07 03:02 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Could be; British spelling! \:\)
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#188848 - 12/18/07 03:50 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Interesting to watch. You never know. After all new member Ahtoy just received 2 positive feedbacks from new member Levandovsky who just received postitive feedback from new member Paulpot regarding an amplifier.

In the meantime here is the first "official" review of the A-1400-8 in Canada Hi-FI. http://www.canadahifi.com/review85.php
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John

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#188854 - 12/18/07 04:20 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Lorenzo1000 Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/07/04
Posts: 537
Loc: Winterpeg
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
Interesting to watch. You never know. After all new member Ahtoy just received 2 positive feedbacks from new member Levandovsky who just received postitive feedback from new member Paulpot regarding an amplifier.

In the meantime here is the first "official" review of the A-1400-8 in Canada Hi-FI. http://www.canadahifi.com/review85.php


It sounds even more suspicious now. I only posted this originally because it seemed pretty fishy.
_________________________
2xM80 VP180 2xQS8 2xM3 HSU STF3 LG 60PS11 Denon 3808 ATI 1506 LCR 2xATI 1502 Oppo BDP-83

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#188856 - 12/18/07 04:34 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Lorenzo1000]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I find Audiogon somewhat of a cesspool these days. I've had both good times and bad times on that site. Anyway let's see what happens.
_________________________
John

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#188894 - 12/18/07 08:34 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Lorenzo1000]
Hansang Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 578
Loc: New York
Lorenzo,
Your animated GIF is too damn funny. I almost broke my laptop trying to squish the bug! too funny!
_________________________
--
Denon 3808, EPIC80/500 Speakers

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#188954 - 12/19/07 05:32 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Lorenzo1000]
Amie Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/02
Posts: 1620
Thanks for the heads up Lorenzo - I have sent an email to Audiogon to see if they want to investigate. We have not sold an A1400-8 to the UK - Andrea checked into it. The picture is from the show in Tampa, interestingly. Hopefully it gets sorted out!
_________________________
Amie Colquhoun
Axiom Audio

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#188964 - 12/19/07 08:54 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Amie]
Worfzara Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/25/05
Posts: 709
Loc: London area, Ont, Canada
Hi Amie, I know you have the long arm of the law already working on this but here is just some more info.

I emailed this guy 2 questions through Audiogon.

1. How old is the unit?

2. Why are you selling?

This is the response I got this morning in an Email.

Hello.
I'm used Axiom 10 month.But actually it's 2 years already,because I'm bought used also.
I'm sale,because I'm order for me conrad-johnson more expensive that this one and I'm think more good and unit on the way already.
So,I'm no need have 2.
Thank you.


I didn't post his name, but I can PM it to you if you wish, or I can forward the email too.


Paul
_________________________
paul

Axiom M80, VP180, Qs8, EP500
Panasonic PT-AU900
AudioTrak AT-6100
Denon AVR-990

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#188968 - 12/19/07 09:02 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
terzaghi Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 4848
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
wow....

I'm think best not be buying a used-used 10 month but actually 2 year half weight pre production axiom amp cheaper than a more good conrad-johnson
_________________________
-David

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#188972 - 12/19/07 09:20 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Worfzara]
Amie Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/02
Posts: 1620
Thanks for your investigation Paul! I've already heard back from Audiogon and they're pursuing it from their end. I hoep whoever bid on the item gets out okay.
_________________________
Amie Colquhoun
Axiom Audio

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#188973 - 12/19/07 09:23 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Amie]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Amie it looks like this guy bought the unit while it was still on drawing board. \:D \:D Here is the email he also sent me regarding its age. Its probably a false name he is using.

"Hello,John.
I'm used 10 month,but unit actually 2 years old.I''m bought used also.No have any problem. Shipping I'm cost for 70$,but if you're tell me your ZIP,I'm tell for you more sure.
Thank you.
Sincerely.
Richard Ah Toy"

A scam for sure.
_________________________
John

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#188980 - 12/19/07 09:46 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13325
Loc: Iowa
His grammer reminds me of Bigwyrs. ha ha lol
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M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
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#189008 - 12/19/07 11:57 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: SirQuack]
Lorenzo1000 Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/07/04
Posts: 537
Loc: Winterpeg
Well this is obviously a scam. Just another site to add to the proceed with caustion list. I have purchased and sold a couple of items on Audiogon but no problems yet.
_________________________
2xM80 VP180 2xQS8 2xM3 HSU STF3 LG 60PS11 Denon 3808 ATI 1506 LCR 2xATI 1502 Oppo BDP-83

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#191064 - 01/08/08 09:44 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Okay... It is DONE! Order placed.... Amp + VP150 + Some cables + Axiom Jacket (Yeah! Axioman with super-hearing capabilities +10 ).

I can't wait for the next few paychecks to cover the newly formed hole on my credit card! \:\(

I can't wait to have the second VP150! \:\)

The jacket might come a bit early in the year for Canada... ;\)

Incidentaly, I will tryout that A1400-8 thingy to see if it can really remove groundloop hums from my cable. I am having second thoughts as to if I clicked on the right icon...

PS: I am actually shaking with excitement...


Edited by EFalardeau (01/08/08 09:45 AM)
Edit Reason: Added the PS...
_________________________
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#191066 - 01/08/08 09:47 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
Congrats, Eric.

Do you have terminals for a second centre on the Onkyo or will you just be connecting in parallel to the same terminals?

Now it's going to be a long wait...

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#191070 - 01/08/08 09:56 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
For my tests, I was in parallel, but I avoided playing anything very loud.

BTW, once the second center arrives, it will be connected to new amp, not to Onkyo 805 (Alan and JC must be smiling now!)
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191082 - 01/08/08 10:56 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Congrats Eric. I'm really interested in how dual VP150s will sound with the amp. I heard that setup once and it was excellent which is contrary to all the stuff on lobing etc which I expected. Looking forward to your views.
_________________________
John

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#191107 - 01/08/08 01:37 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
I think a trip to Montreal might be in order. Nicely done Eric!
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
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#191161 - 01/08/08 10:30 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
Hansang Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 578
Loc: New York
 Originally Posted By: EFalardeau
For my tests, I was in parallel, but I avoided playing anything very loud.

BTW, once the second center arrives, it will be connected to new amp, not to Onkyo 805 (Alan and JC must be smiling now!)


I would love it if you could tell me if the additional VP150 makes a big difference or not. The $400 or so price tag is not a huge deal in terms of my decision factor. If it sounds nicer, I wouldn't mind getting another one. *BUT* I would have to put them side by side. That probably wouldn't be as good as one on top of the TV and one at the bottom....what do you guys think?

I may seriously pull the trigger on the amp. Like I said, I can never use the power...but still. very very tempting!!
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Denon 3808, EPIC80/500 Speakers

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#191164 - 01/08/08 10:39 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Hansang]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I heard a pair of VP150s, on top and bottom of a 110" diagonal screen and try as I might I couldn't detect the lobing. Instead they did a great job of anchoring the voices to the centre of the screen. Its one of those curious things where a real life application sounds good when the theory says it shouldn't.
_________________________
John

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#191166 - 01/08/08 11:05 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
First, the dual VP150. The reason why I am going for 2 is that, below the TV is good for TV/movies, but sounds weird for music. On top of the TV (very high nowadays because TVs are BIG), it is better for music, but not good enough and strange for TV/HT.

The dual top/bottom idea is to get back the truly "center" channel (both hotizontal and vertical).

As for the amp. Do not get distracted by the number of watts. The speed and stability makes the A1400 a great amp even if you don't play loud. As I am typing, I cannot vouch apart from theory, but within a week, I will be in a position to concur with John.
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191181 - 01/08/08 11:36 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
 Originally Posted By: EFalardeau
...but within a week, I will be in a position to concur with John.


It's a good thing you're not biased \:\) .

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#191203 - 01/09/08 01:50 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: EFalardeau
Okay... It is DONE! Order placed.... Amp + VP150 + Some cables + Axiom Jacket (Yeah! Axioman with super-hearing capabilities +10 ).

I can't wait for the next few paychecks to cover the newly formed hole on my credit card! \:\(

I can't wait to have the second VP150! \:\)

The jacket might come a bit early in the year for Canada... ;\)

Incidentaly, I will tryout that A1400-8 thingy to see if it can really remove groundloop hums from my cable. I am having second thoughts as to if I clicked on the right icon...

PS: I am actually shaking with excitement...


Hi Eric,

Could you please elaborate on what you are referring to regarding the "thingy" that removes the ground loop hum. I have the A1400-8 hooked up to an Integra DTC-9.8; there was a hum with the unbalanced interconnects that resolved when I switched to balanced cables.

I think the amp will meet, and likely exceed, your expectations.

John


Edited by ihifi (01/09/08 01:51 AM)
_________________________
John
Our HT


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#191206 - 01/09/08 02:17 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Hey, I'm glad the balanced cables worked for you.

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#191209 - 01/09/08 04:38 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Sorry, it was just a joke (insinuating that I bought the A1400 thinking I was buying the ground insultator).

As for expectations, with Axiom the story has always been so far: expectations high THEN because it is Axiom, expectations even higher and THEN it gets exceeded. So, EVERYTHING, I raise my expectations higher... and they manage to exceed them. So, I am truly looking forward to the A1400-8! \:\)
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191211 - 01/09/08 06:51 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I just ordered the Integra 9.8. Did you try the pre-amp with any amp besides the a-1400-8? Have you had any issues with the Integra?
_________________________
John

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#191212 - 01/09/08 07:07 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Where did you order it from? I am looking at that for next few months.
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191214 - 01/09/08 07:14 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I'll send you a PM.
_________________________
John

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#191239 - 01/09/08 11:18 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
I just ordered the Integra 9.8. Did you try the pre-amp with any amp besides the a-1400-8? Have you had any issues with the Integra?


Hi John,

I initially used the Yamaha DSP-A1 as preamp for the A1400-8 and there was no hum. With the Integra DTC-9.8, there was a hum and this resolved with balanced interconnects. Kerr here also has the same combination and on my request he tested his DTC 9.8 with unbalanced interconnects and heard the samne hum as well (he went with balanced cables from the beginning). So, my advise is to use balanced cables with this combination if there is a hum or as prophylaxis.

Integra really shines with high rez audio from HDMI connection and even with CDs when this connection is used vs digital or analog inputs. With FW 1.04, it allows access to all of the Reon's settings and with the latest version of FW (1.05), it allows Auyssey Pro tuning capability. Its analog output stage may not be as good as your Arcam preamplifier and I did not have a chance to test the Integra thouroughly in this regard. If your use is mostly HT or multichannel music (such as with SACD or DVD-Audio), then I think the Integra is outstanding and for $1600 USD it is a steal. You may be interested in reading Kal Rubinson's review of the DTC-9.8 in the January issue of Stereophile. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

John
_________________________
John
Our HT


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#191240 - 01/09/08 11:25 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3889
Loc: Up yonder
Does the A-1400 come in a satin or gloss finish? It looks like a flat black from the pictures I've seen.

Don't even start Rob..... \:\)
_________________________


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#191246 - 01/09/08 11:41 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: michael_d]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Satin or gloss finish would add coloration to the sound! \:\)
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191253 - 01/09/08 12:05 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Thanks John. I presume the firmware updates are accessible from the website? I'll check the Integra against the Arcam analog outs. Sounds like its a great pre-amp for the Axiom amp. \:\)
_________________________
John

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#191268 - 01/09/08 12:35 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
Would you guys please stop talking about all these nice toys so I can sit back and enjoy my Denon 3808, you are driving me crazy.
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
TTTHHHPPPPPTTTT!

My HT

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#191273 - 01/09/08 12:44 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
Thanks John. I presume the firmware updates are accessible from the website? I'll check the Integra against the Arcam analog outs. Sounds like its a great pre-amp for the Axiom amp. \:\)


John,

The FW updates are being made available to dealers only. There is a release form for end-users that one can fill out and send to Integra; this form releases Integra from liability and they then send you FW CDs. Probably easier is to just go here at AVS and download the FW. I have the 1.04 and thinking about upgrading to the new 1.05 (though it sounds like the FW only adds Audyssey Pro capability, which requires a dealer key and about $200 for set up). I think Keyspan USB to serial adapter and a straight DB-9 M/F cable is what is needed to upgrade the Integra through its RS-232 port. I am in the process of ascertaining the details. The current units are apparently being shipped with 1.05 already installed. In order to find out which FW the unit has, you press and hold [DISPLAY] button and simultaneously press [STANDBY/ON] button, and FW is displayed on the unit's screen

Yes, the combination of the Integra DTC-9.8 and the Axiom A1400-8 is quite impressive indeed; both are packed with bleeding edge technology (I like that phrase) and offer outstanding performance.

John


Edited by ihifi (01/09/08 12:50 PM)
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Our HT


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#191275 - 01/09/08 12:44 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17755
Loc: NoVA
When you say, "released from liability" does that mean that you void your warranty when you update the firmware?
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#191285 - 01/09/08 01:05 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Ken.C]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: kcarlile
When you say, "released from liability" does that mean that you void your warranty when you update the firmware?


I have the form at home; the wording is not that clear which is probably good for users if there is later an issue with Onkyo about what exactly was "released." But the form does say that the owner absolves Onkyo/Integra of any potential software or firmware issues that may arise by his/her attempt of the firmware upgrade procedure. I don't think the warranty is nullified unless the failiure can be shown to have resulted from the FW upgrade attempt.

John
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John
Our HT


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#191287 - 01/09/08 01:07 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17755
Loc: NoVA
How lovely.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#191289 - 01/09/08 01:34 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Ken.C]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
I think there are alot of bios upgrade disclaimers out there that read nearly the same way.
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
TTTHHHPPPPPTTTT!

My HT

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#191292 - 01/09/08 01:54 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
This is why I'm holding off on upgrading the firmware for now. I would like to get to the Reon settings, but I can wait for a while and see if they do any more updates before I bother.

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#191294 - 01/09/08 02:05 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
I always upgrade to new firmware. It almost always improves performance. Take the Toshiba XA2 hddvd player...must be on its 5th firmware upgrade by now.
_________________________
John

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#191295 - 01/09/08 02:07 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Yeah, but it's a lot less of a chore on the HD DVD players.

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#191297 - 01/09/08 02:15 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
What's the procedure with the Integra? Isn't it usually done with a notebook through the RS-232 port?
_________________________
John

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#191304 - 01/09/08 03:09 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Ack. Just try and find good laptop with a serial port these days...... PCs also, but at least you could add a 15 dollar RS-232 card to a PC but it's tough to drag over to your player.

Any engineer still designing for exclusive RS-232 port should be retired and put into a Senior Citizen's home. Might as well make their updates exclusively on a floppy disk too. Get with the times....

Sorry, in a bad mood ATM. It reads more crankiness than humor but I'll leave it as is, because it's true...
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#191307 - 01/09/08 03:42 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
Hi Charles,

I will now wait as well for the DTC-9.8 FW upgrade to 1.05 as I learned that there is yet a newer FW, yes 1.06, that will be out imminently. I too upgrade equipment with FW whenever available because they tend to improve performance, in general, and usually include unpublisized tweaks.

John
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John
Our HT


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#191308 - 01/09/08 03:45 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
What's the procedure with the Integra? Isn't it usually done with a notebook through the RS-232 port?


it seems that one needs a straight DB-9 M/F cable connected on its F-end to a Keyspan USA-19HS (USB adapter) and its-M end connected to the DTC-9.8. Then the USB from the Keyspan is used to connect to the PC. If one has an old laptop/PC with serial port then a straight serial cable is apparently all that is required. I will find out for sure soon.

John
_________________________
John
Our HT


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#191311 - 01/09/08 03:51 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
There is an Ethernet port on that beast. Strange they are not using it.
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191312 - 01/09/08 03:52 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Ok thanks sounds easy enough.
_________________________
John

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#191317 - 01/09/08 04:37 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: EFalardeau
There is an Ethernet port on that beast. Strange they are not using it.


Yes, indeed, there is an ethernet port. To complicate things a little, it turns out that the Integra's various softwares can be updated through the RS-232, HDMI port, and the ethernet port. Each port is used to update different softwares. However, there is only some limited reference to this at AVS and I have not yet heard of any updates through a port other than RS-232.

John
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John
Our HT


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#191322 - 01/09/08 05:46 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
 Originally Posted By: Mojo
Now it's going to be a long wait...

Well... it's starting to be... Although I know I am still well within the lead time, I can't stop checking my e-mails every few minutes in case I get a "shipped" one! \:\( At least, once it's shipped, it's only a few hours away!
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191326 - 01/09/08 06:04 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Okay, this is too funny... I JUST RECEIVED THE E-MAIL!
I thought at first it might be the EP-0, but NO, it is the big order! Can't wait to wear that new jacket.
I AM SO GIDDY!
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191330 - 01/09/08 06:17 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
skyhawk669 Offline
devotee

Registered: 01/23/06
Posts: 436
Loc: Austin, TX
Cool!!

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#191337 - 01/09/08 06:55 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: skyhawk669]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
Pics of the new jacket please!
_________________________
Jason
-----------------
TTTHHHPPPPPTTTT!

My HT

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#191346 - 01/09/08 08:23 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
I find the more powerful better designed amps generally use better materials and circuits. The difference is most obvious musicically in bass peaks and other transient reproduction of cymbal hits, piano notes, kick drum etc. Over the years I gravitated to the larger amps in the Bryston line for that reason.

One of my favourites was a 14BSST which I sold two years ago to a guy who was underpowering some Maggies 3.6 with a Classe amp. Instead I picked up the 4BSST pair. I can hear the difference between the single 4BSST and the Outlaw, and the A-1400-8 and one 4BSST but its a tossup between the pair of 4BSSTs and the A-1400-8. No surprise there since the a1400-8 got its inspiration from a pair of 7BSSTs.


And all this was of course determined under controlled conditions with A/B blind testing.
Or it is just another ad of audio propaganda.
Reads like Bose.
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#191371 - 01/09/08 10:32 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Just my perspective on the world based on direct listening and comparing against the amps I own . Actually Axiom must have blown a dozen 7BSSTs taking them apart while designing the a1400-a.

I'm still waiting for you to post at least one post other than your usual negative regressive diatribe dismissing anyone's audio views that doesn't conform with yours. Your posts are not very useful to anyone as far as I can tell. Have you ever actually made an insightful contribution to this forum?
_________________________
John

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#191378 - 01/09/08 10:45 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
jakewash, please reassure me that the "wind storm" is not affecting Purolator! The website is still not showing "in transit" which it usually does at this hour. \:\(
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191389 - 01/09/08 11:39 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
ihifi Offline
local

Registered: 10/06/06
Posts: 280
Loc: CT
 Originally Posted By: chesseroo
 Originally Posted By: jakeman
I find the more powerful better designed amps generally use better materials and circuits. The difference is most obvious musicically in bass peaks and other transient reproduction of cymbal hits, piano notes, kick drum etc. Over the years I gravitated to the larger amps in the Bryston line for that reason.

One of my favourites was a 14BSST which I sold two years ago to a guy who was underpowering some Maggies 3.6 with a Classe amp. Instead I picked up the 4BSST pair. I can hear the difference between the single 4BSST and the Outlaw, and the A-1400-8 and one 4BSST but its a tossup between the pair of 4BSSTs and the A-1400-8. No surprise there since the a1400-8 got its inspiration from a pair of 7BSSTs.


And all this was of course determined under controlled conditions with A/B blind testing.
Or it is just another ad of audio propaganda.
Reads like Bose.


You are correct. Unless the OP can listen to the Axiom, Outlaw, and Bryston amps in the same room, using the same speakers, with the levels matched to within 0.1 db at the listening position, and can make a repeated direct blind A/B/C comparison, his impressions are not really valid. And, we all know that. He is nevertheless, welcomed to post his personal and possibly biased thoughts in this informal setting and is a well respected and knowledgeable member of our forum. You can choose to ignore his opinion or tactfully question his testing, but I think you discredit yourself by insulting him this way. Your comment, "reads like a Bose", reads like a slap in the face.

I am a relative newbie in this hobby and learned a great deal from John by reading his posts and inquiring his thoughts about various issues and pieces of gear. I hope that he does not get discouraged by your post from freely sharing his thoughts.

John
_________________________
John
Our HT


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#191396 - 01/10/08 12:23 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10379
Haven't been following this thread closely, but a look at the last few replies indicates that it should be reiterated that there's something that all well-designed amplifiers do, i.e., amplify transparently without adding any sonic signature of their own, and other things that they don't do, e.g., add "tightness", "speed", "warmth", "fullness", etc. or other fanciful descriptions. Again, the bottom line is audibly flat frequency response with inaudibly low noise and distortion; that's all there is and all engineering considerations lead to that. Basic principles of audio engineering indicate this and claims to the contrary collapse when put to the(blind listening)test and shouldn't be taken seriously. The editor of The Audio Critic summarizes this basic principle well in "Electronic SignalPaths Do Not Have a Personality!" .
_________________________
-----------------------------------

Enjoy the music, not the equipment.



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#191405 - 01/10/08 07:12 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: JohnK]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
That's a reasonably insightful post John. I'm well aware of the basic elements of amp engineering and I consider myself lucky that I have been able to turn to such an esteemed amp engineer as Tom Cumberland to patiently answer my sceptical questions over the last few months. I absolutely agree that flat frequency response and inaudibly low distortion are indeed the hallmarks of any good solid state amplifier. Let's set aside tube amplifiers for a moment since their relatively plentiful 2nd order harmonic distortion can make for an audibly pleasant difference in sound compared to a solid state amp.

Another distinguishing audible factor does indeed have to do with what many people including myself generically call "speed" and encompasses several time domain factors influencing sound. A few worth noting are damping factor, slew rate, size and number of the array of capacitors and how they are aligned, bridged or unbridged amp modules, size of voltage rails. Designers have many, many variables to ponder and integrate, all of which can be utilized to be completely neutral or impart other sutle sonic qualities.

The ability of the amp to respond to an input sigal does vary depending on the its own design attribute and the load presented to the amp by the speakers/cables. To me those attributes are most audible in the bass region, hence you hear people describe the certain amps as sounding "fast" compared to other amps. Other people may be more sensitive to higher frequency sounds which some people refer as "brighter" sounding or sometimes having a solid state "edginess". To be more accurate that phenomenon should really describe the amp/speaker interaction. But by not changing anything else in the system except the amp one should be able to detect an audible difference if any between amps having somewhat different designs and specs.

In the case of the a-1400-a, I know from long discussions with Tom and Ian how highly they regard the Bryston amps, a long time favourite of mine. One reason this product took so long was they're determination to come out with an amp being the sonic equivalent of a stack of the longtime Bryston flagship 7B monoblocks. Knowing the stereo version of this amp well, the 14BSST, from owning it for a whileI was very sceptical as I mentioned at the start of this thread. Bryston amps are one of the most highly regarded amps and legendary for their bass control and...I have to use the description...speed.

You make an arm waving point about the importance of adhereing to basic principles of engineering. Its been 3 decades since I studied engineering science so forgive me if I'm rusty but I must tell you that those lofty principles, whatever that means, often don't hold up under real world conditions which is why its a science that continues to grow and evolve. The latest apparent contradiction which I am still trying to reconcile is why I hear an improvement in sound quality in a typical HT from using dual centres such as the VP150 when all the "principles" suggest the sound should be compromised due to lobing. Too many other variables must be coming into play.

With respect to the article you cited he contradicts himself in the middle of the second paragraph but I understand his general position which I have moved away from over the last 20 years. Here is a more technical article on high voltage amplifiers which goes into more detail on some amp design parameters. The main point to glean from that article is not the technical detail but to show that the skilled amp engineer has many ways to influence how the amp processes the signal and therefore can affect the sonic quality of amplified output. I am not saying that every SS amp will have a different sound. But I can say strongly that the Axiom amp bears a very close sonic signature to the Bryston amps which inspired its design.

http://www.falco-systems.com/high_voltage_amplifiers.html
_________________________
John

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#191406 - 01/10/08 07:27 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: ihifi]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
John (ihifi) ( Too many Johns around here \:D ) is right of course and I have never suggested that any of my observations were done in a DBT or BT condition. That's one reason I called this thread "Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps". I lived with the A-1400-A for a good two months and asked many questions about it before starting this thread. So my impressions while not gleaned from the BT variety have come about from weightlifting sessions involving different amps comparing different program material many times over a suitably long period.

Thanks for your comments John. ;\)
_________________________
John

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#191412 - 01/10/08 08:10 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Soon! It's "on vehicule for delivery"!
Gotta love that Axiom/Purolator teamwork!
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191536 - 01/10/08 09:28 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Unfortunatelty, they arrived only at 16h08 and I had a party at 17h00. I at least made sure all the components were working fine (i.e. I re-connected everything and used test tones to verify settings). I had a huge 2 minutes test. I listened to Bach's second violon solo partita's first movement with Julia Fisher. Viplin sounded very, very natural. End of all tests for today! \:\(

Tomorrow, I shall have 2-3 hours to do more testing.

The jacket is GREAT, btw! Nice colors, confortable at -6C. Very nice.
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191537 - 01/10/08 09:46 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Looking forward to your impressions, Eric. \:\)
_________________________
John

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#191538 - 01/10/08 09:51 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: JohnK]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
 Originally Posted By: JohnK
Haven't been following this thread closely, but a look at the last few replies indicates that it should be reiterated that there's something that all well-designed amplifiers do, i.e., amplify transparently without adding any sonic signature of their own, and other things that they don't do, e.g., add "tightness", "speed", "warmth", "fullness", etc. or other fanciful descriptions. Again, the bottom line is audibly flat frequency response with inaudibly low noise and distortion; that's all there is and all engineering considerations lead to that. Basic principles of audio engineering indicate this and claims to the contrary collapse when put to the(blind listening)test and shouldn't be taken seriously. The editor of The Audio Critic summarizes this basic principle well in "Electronic SignalPaths Do Not Have a Personality!" .


Well said JohnK.

Unfortunately newbies and those without a great enough desire to find switching equipment would rather listen to their personal, more colourful descriptions of equipment. It seems to hold more magic than the results of controlled comparisons.
The thought of so many components sounding the same is too boring a concept.

Let the audio myths parade forth!!
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#191540 - 01/10/08 09:56 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: chesseroo]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Give it a rest chesseroo. Your denigrating comments sully this great forum. Its my last comment regarding your contempuous posts as I'd rather not dignify someone as closeminded and pompous as you with a response. You really are a disgrace to any scientifically minded person.

Here is just one example from a PM today from one well respected member of how others regard your absurd attention seeking posts.

"Regrettably, he just doesn't seem to get the message, and I despair that he ever will. Interestingly, JohnK and he have similar beliefs, but John simply states his opinion and moves on eschewing any invitation to do combat. Occasionally his frustration with the non-scientific gets the better of him and he resorts to a rare "nonesense" comment, but he rarely resorts to the sarcasm and nastiness that is Chess' stock and trade."

Would you like to see more?

_________________________
John

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#191544 - 01/10/08 10:15 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: Mojo]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Tex, the week is actually right now. I will not post more than this at this point: You will DEFINITELY not be returning your A1400 when you get it!
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191552 - 01/10/08 11:00 PM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakeman]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
Pots and black kettles chum.

Your post is not exactly taking the high road.
Hypocrisy at its best.

So jakeman will your opinion EVER be done with a controlled blind A/B test or will all your thoughts be a pile presented as 100% fact?

Hmm, yes i guess M80s MUST be more clear than M60s, because jakeman said so.
Better write that one up in a paper real quick.
Tell another newbie. I don't think the first 100 were enough.

Are YOU getting the point yet?
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#191600 - 01/11/08 12:37 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
I plan on A/Bing the A1400 against my wife's 2.2W Sony at 0.5W nominal into my M80s. If no one can tell the difference, back it goes \:\) .

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#191624 - 01/11/08 08:53 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: jakewash]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
The jacket is actually very nice. I wore it last night and this morning (it's about +3C in Montreal right now). Good material, nice colors and the logos and stuff is well done.
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191646 - 01/11/08 10:38 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
But how does it sound?

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#191647 - 01/11/08 10:41 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
I posted my first impressions in my "I blew it" post by mistake!
http://www.axiomaudio.com/boards/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showthreaded&Number=191623#Post191623


Edited by EFalardeau (01/11/08 10:42 AM)
Edit Reason: added the link
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191648 - 01/11/08 10:44 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: EFalardeau]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11171
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Oh, I was asking how the jacket sounds.

And that really, really sucks about the amp.

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#191649 - 01/11/08 10:46 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
EFalardeau Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 3270
Loc: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Oh! Sorry! The jacket sounds a lot like my iPod! That could be because there is one in the pocket \:\)
_________________________
E = MC2 = ((2M80 + VP180 + 4QS8)/(EP800 + EP500))^(ADA1500 x D2v)
Audiobytes! 2M22! 2VP150!

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#191651 - 01/11/08 10:47 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: CV]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Charles, I believe Eric is trying to tell us that the jacket sounds dead quiet .... DOH


All kidding aside, I hope you get your amp taken care of Eric!
_________________________
Rick
Our Room

smile

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#191654 - 01/11/08 11:16 AM Re: Reflections on the A1400-8 and other amps [Re: RickF]
jakeman Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 852
Loc: Toronto
Too bad about the mishap. I'm sure Axiom will help you with it.
_________________________
John

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