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Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

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kirstenj

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Post Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:47 pm

Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

Hi All,

I've had a pair of AL-III Plus's for about 11 years and used them for 2 channel music, as well as the fronts for our home theater (w/Polk RT3s in the back, and the TV as the center.) I know, I'm not an audiophile..., but LOVE music, love the AL-III's, and have limited budget. I powered them with a Pioneer 100w/ch, 8 ohm rated receiver, which shut down when played too loud, but I wasn't too worried about it, as the receiver was inexpensive (relatively) and I was focused on other things. It's volume control has failed. I recently upgraded our networking and home theater equipment. Because I didn't think I could get good timber match for the hts, I bought Def Tech Pro Cinema 600 speakers for the main channel (hts). Movies sound much better than my old setup, but for music they don't come close to the AL-III's (even with the low power I was giving them), and want to put the AL-III's on an external amp on zone 2 for stereo music. I'm using the Yahama RX-A810 receiver, which has a zone 2 out left/right. I'd like to buy a 2nd hand power amplifier.

Does anyone have recommendations on finding a 2nd hand, 4 ohm power amp, below $500, if that's even possible? What should I look for besides 4 ohm?
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OconeeOrange

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Post Sat Aug 20, 2011 9:03 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

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EndersShadow

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Post Sat Aug 20, 2011 9:22 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

That looks like a pretty good deal.

450 wpc @ 4 ohm.....
"You were on my Ignore List, but you are too damn entertaining, like a circus monkey, so I took you off" - H9
"We shouldn't laugh at people like you, we should pray for them. You have my prayers for a speedy rehabilitation you sad, silly little man" - Jstas
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TNRabbit

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Post Sat Aug 20, 2011 9:31 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

Having driven mine with a souped-up M 500 & put it into protection mode, I think you need more juice.

Perhaps biamping with an AV-705?
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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angelod307

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Post Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:42 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

after owning the same type speakers since new, i will say that the sunfire 300x2 is by far the amp of choice for me. i have tfm55's,35's and listened to a 1.0t as well as a pioneer ht bi-amped and like the sunfire the best. you will spend more than 500 on most days, but if you have the time, you can get one cheaper than not. hands down i say.
CarverFest: I just go for the arts and crafts
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kirstenj

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:10 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

Thank you all, those look like great suggestions and helps a lot. :-)
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TNRabbit

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 6:55 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

angelod307 wrote:after owning the same type speakers since new, i will say that the sunfire 300x2 is by far the amp of choice for me. i have tfm55's,35's and listened to a 1.0t as well as a pioneer ht bi-amped and like the sunfire the best. you will spend more than 500 on most days, but if you have the time, you can get one cheaper than not. hands down i say.


I have to agree; if you can swing $700-$900 for one of these, you'll be MUCH happier~
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.
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OconeeOrange

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:13 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's




11 hours to go and still at $305.
This is much more power than you have used on them in the past, and meets your budget.

If you are going over budget, might as well get this : http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sunfire-Cinema-Grand-Signature-Bob-Carver-amplifier-/220837800453?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item336af56a05 or a Sunfire 600X2. I have them both and they are good. It would be difficult to get one under $500 though.

The mentioned Carver AV-705 in good shape can be found for $500. I have a like new one, and it bi-amped my CRS-3s with success. Bi-amped it gives you 250 watts a speaker.
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EndersShadow

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:46 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

TNRabbit wrote:Having driven mine with a souped-up M 500 & put it into protection mode, I think you need more juice.

Perhaps biamping with an AV-705?


Seriously? Your telling me my 705 could decently power a set of AL-III's? What about Carver Amazings? Same deal?

This could make me seriously reconsider selling it when I upgrade downstairs.....
"You were on my Ignore List, but you are too damn entertaining, like a circus monkey, so I took you off" - H9
"We shouldn't laugh at people like you, we should pray for them. You have my prayers for a speedy rehabilitation you sad, silly little man" - Jstas
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treitz3

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:50 am

To Endershadow...It depends on which ALS you are talking about. Originals, Silvers, ALIII's or Platinums and whether or not you will be using an active crossover.
In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to a good analogue reproduction.

Robert R. - "Did you see my North Korea analogy? I should have named it Carversite.kim"
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kirstenj

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:48 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

Going over budget, yes, that could happen ;-) This all started with a failed external drive with my music on it. I was able to recover most of it off of some backup disks, but it prompted me to put in a more robust solution. Bought a Synology DS211J NAS, configured with Raid 1 for a new storage (and server) solution, and an external backup drive for offsite storage. A new CISCO Linksys E4200 router, LG LW5600 3D TV, the Def Tech ProCinema 600 hts speakers, the Yamaha RX-A810 receiver, LG BD-670 Bluray player, and an MX450 universal remote and MRF260 IR/RF converter station, also followed, since NOW, we could serve up our home videos and photos on a tv, and our old tv was an 11 year old projection TV that was pretty fuzzy. We were already streaming music to an Apple Airport Express connected to the receiver. We have a company coming to run speaker wire and cat5e cable in a couple of weeks, as the wireless was still dropping out. So, I'm wanting to make sure I know what and where everything is going. You can see, I'm already over budget <g>. My husband is being VERY understanding IMO, since he's NOT a music afficianado, but he shouldn't complain, since he got a $25 indoor antenna for watching golf games while we were at the AV store ;-) Anyway... bi-amping would mean TWO amplifiers, so that sounds more expensive for now, unless I found a super deal on both amps.

I noticed last night that the Yamaha Rx-A810 manual says it's volume control doesn't work in zone 2 IF you're using an external amp. So... how does one control the volume? Are all receivers with multi-zone capability like this? Probably outside the scope of this thread, but I'm beginning to wonder if the other restrictions when using zone 2 (not getting on-screen (TV) control of music selection for dlna streamed music, no ability to control Internet radio, and optical in for the Airport Express not supported) is reason to consider a different receiver (we can exchange this one for awhile.)
Last edited by kirstenj on Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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treitz3

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:53 am

I do have a Niles volume control, if you are interested. If I'm not mistaken, this would control the volume on zone 2. 50 bucks and it's yours....ah, hell. You are new....40 bucks and it's yours. let's just make 100% sure that it will work in your scenario first.

BTW, I take it that you are a female? That's cool as hell. We only have a handful on this board. BTW, welcome to the forum!

What all do you want to accomplish in zone 2 and how far away id it from the primary amplifier?
In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to a good analogue reproduction.

Robert R. - "Did you see my North Korea analogy? I should have named it Carversite.kim"
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AlexSauter

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:54 am

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

I have a Carver Pro PT1800 that I picked up on eBay for $250 shipped and it does my AL-III's justice, but as Bob stated in one of the CF videos, the amp has no voice...
You would only be listening to the speakers the way they were designed... (I like it personally)
RIP BillD
BillD wrote:Well, some people are glass half empty people and some are glass half full. Being an engineer, I just think the glass is the wrong size.


My system (sitting in the garage):

(Stereo System)
Modified Carver AL III+'s (Pushed into the corners to make room for the ALS speakers)
Modified CarverFest 2011 20w tube amplifier
Carver Pro PT-1800
Sunfire Prototype TGA-2375
Carver TX-2 Tuner (not used)
Logitech Squeezebox (replaced Tuner & dad's CD player)
CARVERaudio Directional RCA interconnects
RCA-Headphone jack for iPod & iPhone
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mbskeam

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:01 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

yeap the pt series amps will give you a lot of bang for the buck.....
just run the input thru an EQ, or not......
these amps have a very neutral sound.
Mbskeam


#1 BLACK BEAUTY's made by the man, the myth, the legend Bob Carver
CARVER: TFM-75, TFM-45(3), SD/A-490T
SUNFIRE: Tube pre
2 sets of ALS'3, set of SILVERS, set of PLATS
AUDIOCONTROL: phase coupled activator
KENWOOD: BASIC M2a (2)

“Youth ages, immaturity is outgrown, ignorance can be educated, and drunkenness sobered, but stupid lasts forever.”
― Aristophanes

The only thing I'll feel......will be the RECOIL
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"We should seek the greatest value of our action"
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kirstenj

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Post Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:23 pm

Re: Need low-budget power amp for AL-III Plus's

Yes, female and being an aquarian, I'm prone to be technology focused and interested in MANY things. This makes budgeting more difficult, but hey, a lot of fun too!

I see on the left, back of the M-500 a dial. Is that a volume control maybe? Can't tell from the pic. Looking at the Niles Volume Control it looks like these are manual controls. How does this connect to the amp? I'm guessing that if I want a solution that's remote controllable, which I do, I need some EE help, or look for a newer amp than the M-500, which I am interested in.
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