I've been using a couple of the pro amps on loan from a friend to drive some very demanding Infinity RSII's (PM1201) and a Hsu TN 1220 HO (PM600) for a while. He had a stack of PM's driving his HT then converted over to all Peavy stuff. He's obviously a pro-amp guy.
I was very happy with the sound quality. The piece of mind that the 2 ohm and below impedence dips the RSII's are known for would not stress the amp into clipping, thereby frying the beautiful EMIT tweeters, was comforting as well. However, the fan noise and cosmetics were starting to bother me. Cheap-ish amp searches (because this whole system has had to be budget minded) continually yeilded Carver home stuff as some of the best bang for the buck. There was obviously the reliability issues that some expound upon, but I hadn't exeperienced any of that in the year I was running the PM's.
Just recently I've secured a m0.5t and a m-500t. I'm (with lots of help) doing a re-cap on the infinity's which will enable them to be bi-ampable. The idea is to run the m0.5t on the mids & tweets and the 500 on the demanding bottom end. I've tested them both on the old crossovers before I tore them apart. The .5 was buttery smooth on the top end but didn't seem to have the guts to control the lower end. It may have, but I wasn't willing to push the volume. The 500 was very nice. Same top end goodies and plenty of control over the bottom end.
I can't wait until the crossovers are done and this rig is up and running! Both amps came to me in decent condition, inside and out. The 500 was advertised as having a 'hum' issue. I pulled the trigger anyway, having heard that ground loop has been an issue in Carvers, but it seems to be very system/house electrical system dependant.
I rolled the dice. When I opened it up and plugged it in I had no left channel and big time hum in the right. Disappointed Although I have no knowledge-based right to pull the cover on any electronics, I did anyway. Top and bottom. Looking for any tell-tale signs of trouble, scorching, leaky caps, dust build-up or whatever, I found absolutely nothing. Re-assembled, I plugged it back in and holy balls, if everything was right on point.
No hum, left channel engaged! I sat for quite a while just watching the big lighted meters dance around (I haven't had an amp with meters-It's cool). So I'm very happy, to say the least, about the new Carver gear I've assmebled. It seems to balance well with the Infinity's. Hopefully, a tube pre is in my future and it will only get better from here.
I had one question and I don't know if I should ask it here or post it in the Carver Home forum. The binding posts on the m0.5t don't accept the banana plugs I have on the speaker wires I'm running. It's 8ga, so cramming bare wire in there is ifffy at best. Is there a particular pin, or even a thinner banana, people have successfully used with this amp?