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Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

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claudeh

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:14 am

Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Good day,

1st time poser here, long time Craver owner with a couple of questions:

Good day,

Having just discovered the carver audio website, I thought I'd ask:

I have 2 Carver M500t’s and the Carver 1.5t power amp and am thinking of getting another M500t off of ebay shortly to power Magnepan speakers in my yet to be rebuilt media room (house fire last September).

If I may ask; do these amps, which seem to be working fine at present, degrade over time or need service due to their age in order to continue to perform properly?

When I got my first M500t back in ’83 it was used to power a pair of Maggie IIb speakers. I plan on getting new Magnepan speakers (MG12 or MG1.6’s for the main fronts) and want to use the 2 M500t, one each in mono-block mode to power the new Magnepan speakers. The 1.5t to power my surrounds (MGMC1’s) and get a third M500t (or perhaps smeone can make a better suggestions) to power the center channel (Maggie MGCC3). Would you feel this makes sense to drive these very inefficient 4 Ohms speakers?

If you all have any inexpensive mods to suggest in order to maximize the Carver's to work with the Maggie’s, that would also be appreciated.

I plan to use them mostly for movie watching with occasional music (Rock, classical). I do not think I can get the Maggie's to play loud despite the abundant power of the Carver amps.

Thanks in advance for your input, guidance and reply.

VTY,

Claude H.
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weitrhino

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:34 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Claude,

I would not recommend using the M500t's in bridged mode on a nominal 4R load. This will drive them hard and although they will take the pounding, you will lose the true musicality the 500t's offer. Bass response will suffer. These amps do have the ability to "steer" power from one channel to another. You could dedicate one to each channel, but don't bridge them. Just use the left channel on one and the right on the other for a much tighter sound. If you have an active crossover and bi-amp capable speakers, you could use one amp for the bass and one for the mids and tweets. As to their age, yes, they will degrade over time. The general consensus is at 20 years they are due for a good tune-up. Caps degrade as they age and need to be replaced.


There is one more really good alternative. Check out the Mods section of the forum. RichP can do his Mk II mods to your amps and make them into real beasts! I have auditioned one of Rich's amps and compared it to my own and the difference is nothing short of astonishing without sacrificing the musical nature they have. And because you need to have yours tuned up anyway, you may as well have them modified. They will be jaw droppingly powerful. You can also find out more here: http://carvermk2.com/
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Dreamer

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:41 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Using a pair of M-500t's bridged mono to run your Magnepans is probably a bad idea. The Maggies present a pretty difficult load, and can dip well below 4 ohms at some frequencies. If you plan on driving them any louder than "polite background music", you are going to drive those bridged M-500t into overload, instability, and the damping factor is just going to become non-existant. Driven loud, the bass will be floppy, the mids will be grainy and veiled, and teh highs will screech like nails on a chalkboard.

Most carver amps are like this. They are simply not designed to run bridged mono into low-resistance loads, like Martin Logans, Magnepans, and Acoustats. That is the reason most of these amps, in their specifications, only list the power rating when bridged, as into 8ohms, Most of Carver's non-Pro amps don't even give a 4-ohm power rating for bridged mono, because you're not really supposed to do it.

Believe me. I tried this with a pair of Martin Logan Sequels. The wheels fell off when the preamp was at about 2.5 (on a 10 scale).My Sequels actually play louder, and sound better when I'm driving them both with a single M-500t in stereo mode.

I'm currently using an M-500t to drive my Martin Logan Scenarios as the front L/R speakers in my HT setup, and it does pretty well. But then again, the Sequels have a MUCH smaller woofer, don't draw NEARLY as muc current as the Sequels, and rarely dip below 6 ohms.

I would suggest that you either get a pair of REAL Carver monoblocks (Silver 7t or Silver 9t--I have 7t's an they are stable into practically a short-circuit...) or one of the bigger Stereo amps like a TFM-75. The M-500t is a GREAT sounding amp (I own TWO of them) but if you're going to use it to power your main speakers in a Magnepan-based HT setup, you might find it a little lacking, ESPECIALLY if you're planning to move to bigger Maggies in the future.

Of course, YMMV, and that's all just my opinion...
.....HT Rig • Sony STR-DG600 Receiver • Carver M-500t • Sony BDP-S1 • Sony DVP-NS3100ES • Apple Airport Express •
..............................• Martin Logan Scenarios, Logos • Realistic Minimus 7's • Velodyne F-1500b •

2 Ch. Rig • Carver C-4000t • Silver 7t's • Krell KAV-300i • Oppo DV-981HD • Benchmark DAC1-USB • MacBook Pro 17", iTunes •
......• Technics SL-1350 turntable with Sumiko headshell, leads, and Bluepoint cartridge • Martin Logan Sequels •

.........................................................-+-Click Here to see my system-+-
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claudeh

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:42 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Thank you weitrhino for your quick reply and suggestion. I never thought of bi-amping instead of mono-block. I can do this with the Maggies and is a GREAT suggestion.

I will look into the cost of the mod you suggest.

Care to guide me on an appropriate Carver amp I can shop for (eBay) to drive my planned Maggie MGCC3 center? Getting another M500t seems like a bit of a waste of one side BUT I am not familiar with the rest of Carver's offering.

Thanks muuch,

Claude H.
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Dreamer

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 10:22 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

You might consider tracking down a Carver Carver AV-705x, which is a 5-channel amp, and using it to run ALL your speakers. It's rated for 125 watts into 8ohms, so it's a little less powerful than an M-500t, but should be OK for most HT applications. Although it's a rather bland-looking amp, with just a flat front panel and no meters.

Or you might look into a Carver A-735x 3 channel Amplifier. It's rated for 250 wpc into 8 ohms and 400wpc into 4ohms. That should be MORE than enough for your needs. And this amp has three round meters (like the TFM-series) on the front, and looks VERY unique. They're kind of rare, but you can usually pick them up for under $600, and the ones that DO come on th eused market are usually in VERY good condition.
.....HT Rig • Sony STR-DG600 Receiver • Carver M-500t • Sony BDP-S1 • Sony DVP-NS3100ES • Apple Airport Express •
..............................• Martin Logan Scenarios, Logos • Realistic Minimus 7's • Velodyne F-1500b •

2 Ch. Rig • Carver C-4000t • Silver 7t's • Krell KAV-300i • Oppo DV-981HD • Benchmark DAC1-USB • MacBook Pro 17", iTunes •
......• Technics SL-1350 turntable with Sumiko headshell, leads, and Bluepoint cartridge • Martin Logan Sequels •

.........................................................-+-Click Here to see my system-+-
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weitrhino

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 10:43 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

What kind of load does your center speaker present?
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Dreamer

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

The MG-CC3 presents a 4-ohm load. Here is a link to Magnepan's site, for more specifics:

http://www.magnepan.com/model_CC3
.....HT Rig • Sony STR-DG600 Receiver • Carver M-500t • Sony BDP-S1 • Sony DVP-NS3100ES • Apple Airport Express •
..............................• Martin Logan Scenarios, Logos • Realistic Minimus 7's • Velodyne F-1500b •

2 Ch. Rig • Carver C-4000t • Silver 7t's • Krell KAV-300i • Oppo DV-981HD • Benchmark DAC1-USB • MacBook Pro 17", iTunes •
......• Technics SL-1350 turntable with Sumiko headshell, leads, and Bluepoint cartridge • Martin Logan Sequels •

.........................................................-+-Click Here to see my system-+-
<<

TNRabbit

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 11:43 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

WELCOME, claudeh; I would think the M1.5t would be a better option to drive your main Maggies. But biamping with the M500t will work, too.
TNRabbit
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From FrankieD's lips to your ears: Sunfire - a quiet box of endless power.

Sunfire TG-IV/400~7 Amp
Carver SD/A-360 CDP
Benchmark DAC-1
Sony SACD/DVD-A
Active bi-amp: Ashly XR-1001 & 2 Rane PEQ-15s
Main: HotRodded AL-IIIs
Sub: Klipsch RT-12d
Center: Sunfire CRS-3c
Surround: Sunfire CRS-3 (x 2)

OconeeOrange wrote:"Gary likes to play it 'loud' as do I. His system begs you turn it up until you die"

RIP WIlliam B. Dibble, 1948-2012. I'll miss you my friend.
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OBI56

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 11:55 am

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Welcome to the forum claudeh. Just a quick note on some of the things that have been stated in this thread: The 20 year lifespan figure for caps is valid for EVERY brand of electronic gear, not just Carver. The A-753x 3 channel amp is not only rated for 250WPC into 8 ohms and 400WPC into 4 ohms, but up to 750WPC into 2 ohm loads. The AV-705x 5 channel amp is only rated at 125WPC ito 8 ohm loads with no explicit 4 ohm rating so probably not a good match to Maggies.

As for bridgeing, I'm with everyone else on here. IMO it just makes any fine speaker sound like crap when pushed beyond polite conversation levels. Bi-amping is a much better solution. And bTW, my comments on bi-amping apply to all brands of amplifier designed for home use, not just Carver. Those few amps that can run bridged into sub 4 ohm loads are extremely rare adn on the much more expensive side. The exception to this rule seems to be many of the commercial/pro amps designed for stage use, but they tend to be ugly and noisy due to their built in fans.

The last option of getting an extra M-500t is also a good one if it is run in stereo mode to your MG-CC3 using only 1 output channel connected. By running it this way, the M-500t will operate in Power Steering mode and send up to an extra 150W which it "borrows" from the unused channel to the one powering your centre speaker when needed giving you almost 600W into a 4 ohm load. Runing it this way allows you to retain all of its musicality and refinement with no downsides.

Getting your M-500ts upgraded/modded to Mk-II specs by RichP714 will turn them into veritable monster powerhouses and give you a HT system that will be hard to match at 10 times the price.
Why let facts or common sense get in the way of your opinions.
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claudeh

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Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:40 am

Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:27 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Guys,

You all are wonderful to give me such quick and helpful responses.

What I have learned and see as my available options as I have 1 M1.5t and 2 M500t's:
1) Get the M500t's moded\upgraded to MK2's by RichP714 for $350\each + Shipping.
2) Send the M1.5t off to Hi-Tech Audio for maintenance. ( I have just sent email inquiring as to the cost for this
3) Use one of the M500t's MK2s to power either the MG12's or in bi-amp mode using my 2 M500t MK2's if I choose the MG1.6's (budget may not allow for the latter).
4) Use the M1.5t to power my surronds (MGMC1s)
5) And use the remaining M500t MK2 to power the center MGCC3. Get another M500t if I go the MG1.6 bi-map course.
6) I have a 15" powered Velodyne sub, circa 1983 to throw into the mix which should do well with ether the MG12 or MG 1.6's.
7) Do I need to have this Velodyne serviced due to age even though it seems to be worknig fine?

I am planning on using an Onkyo TX-SR-706 (about $550) as a pro\pre. (Please, no flaming me for this choice, you got a better, cost effective, feature rich solution, by all means) I like the feature set, Audyssey speaker setup, etc and the HDMI 1.3 capability to allow me to connect my various video devicew to the AV receiver and pass them through to my Mits 65" DLP using one HDMI cable.

Anything where you think my logic is off, feel free to point it out.

Again thanks for the help and warm welcome.

Claude H.
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TNRabbit

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(pair of) SILVER-7 TUBE AMPs

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:41 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

You could also try Bob & Rita's new shop...
TNRabbit
Image

From FrankieD's lips to your ears: Sunfire - a quiet box of endless power.

Sunfire TG-IV/400~7 Amp
Carver SD/A-360 CDP
Benchmark DAC-1
Sony SACD/DVD-A
Active bi-amp: Ashly XR-1001 & 2 Rane PEQ-15s
Main: HotRodded AL-IIIs
Sub: Klipsch RT-12d
Center: Sunfire CRS-3c
Surround: Sunfire CRS-3 (x 2)

OconeeOrange wrote:"Gary likes to play it 'loud' as do I. His system begs you turn it up until you die"

RIP WIlliam B. Dibble, 1948-2012. I'll miss you my friend.
<<

claudeh

Newbie

Posts: 4

Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:40 am

Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:45 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

you mean here?

Rita's Vintage Audio Repair
Rita Helm, Old Sunfire building
1920 Bickford Ave
Snohomish WA 98290
Phone 425-530-9557

Do they have an email addres or website. I want to inquire about the cost of Refurbishing my M1.5t

Claude H.
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Reese

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:30 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

yes, that's the one, Claude. I think it's a flat rate (like $175 per unit) for repair/refurbishing, but I could be way off base on that ....call them! I don't believe there's a website to go to however.

Reese
Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought -- JFK

Sunfire Classic Tube Preamp; 2 Carver Silver 7ts, 2 Silver 9ts; bi-amped ALS (Originals upgraded to Platinum), Rane PE15's eq's and Rane AC22 xcrossover; Carver c-19 tube pre;
Carver 390t CD carousel; Carver 490t CD player; BBE 362 Sonic Maximizer; C-9 SH; Sony ES tuner and DAT deck; Sony CD copier/burner; Sony dual cassette deck; TEAC 2340R 4 ch r to r tape deck; Dual CS5000 tt, Shure V15 Type V-MR cartridge
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engtaz

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 3:15 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Welcome claudeh. Great gear you have.
engtaz


Carver M4.0T in front channels to Caver AL VI's in SACD & 2 Channel setup
C 16, PT 2400, Slim Device, Carver TX-8, 490T and Rega TT w Grado Gold cart in the 2 channel setup
Bogen SRB20 is computer amp
Carver PM-350 donated for youth church use
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RichP714

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Post Sun Feb 01, 2009 7:53 pm

Re: Advise please - Carver M500t, 1.5t and Magnepan Speakers

Ckaudeh,
Steveford has maggies, and runs them with either an M-1.0t mk II or M-500t mk II; maybe he'll pipe in and tell you how they ride the maggies. Last I heard, he was grinning \:D/
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