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Recommend affordable Reference Amp

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by invisiblemute, Jun 23, 2003.

  • AT5047

    The New AT5047 Premier Studio Microphone Purity Transformed

  1. Hope this is the right topic. Alan suggested that I start a public thread for this.

    I'm looking to get a decent reference amp for a home recording setup. I've done a decent amount of research but book learning will only get you so far. Had my heart set on the Hafler P3000 but it just doesn't give me enough power headroom to play around with given the $500 price tag. I don't necessarily need a QSC 3000W beast but I may need to occasionally take the amp out on the road for unseen reasons and the Hafler doesn't seem to have a traveling kind of disposition. And on top of that it seems some big retailers have stopped carrying Hafler altogether during this economic downturn *shrug*

    I've been considering some lower powered DJ amps but I suppose that's less desirable given the added fan noise and power over quality priority (is this a true assumption?). On the upside they usually have great low end damping power.

    So I'm hoping you guys can help me separate the wheat from the chaff.
  2. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    cheap and reasonable nice sound: TASCAM PA150 and ALESIS RA150
  3. Gidge

    Gidge Guest

    for a home recording setup, the P3000 is more than enuff....Im sure you wont be blasting the nearfields that often :)

    but if you are concerned about the $500, look into this
  4. ahyatt

    ahyatt Active Member

    Oct 6, 2001
    Torrance, CA USA
    Home Page:
    While not available anymore, I am partial to my H&H V800 MOS FETS. I think MOS FETS just sound better in a studio. Very fast rise time and slew rates.

    The Alesis sounds pretty darn good, and less than Hafler. QSC is not an amp I would use for the studio...Live performance is another story.
  5. Thanks guys. You're reminding me not to go overboard. I just got into the mindset to get something decent as far as monitoring because what's the point of getting decent anything else if you can't hear it?

    I suppose the Alesis might be good to pair with my Monitor Ones but I see myself getting the Yorkville YSM1p eventually. And I'm trying to cut down on Alesis since I have way too much already (Alesis Microverb4, Wedge x3 (for live experimental stuff)).

    Ebaying the Hafler P3000 is probably the way I'm going to go. Didn't consider it before but I see some on there now that will probably go for a bit over $300. Though the other cheaper amps are nice they're half the power of the 3000. If I'm going to get self-amped monitors then I'll probably send this amp to sub duty and I'll definitely need the power then.

    Can someone give a quick explanation of what a MOSFET amp is? I'm doing a Google search but I'm not having much luck. The only other amp types I'm familiar with are tube and the super fast switching suckers. BTW, found a cool little site for kit builders:
  6. Would the Yorkville YSM1p be enough of an improvement over the Monitor Ones to justify getting them considering I already have the Monitor Ones? Thanks.
  7. vinniesrs

    vinniesrs Active Member

    May 12, 2003
    I use the alesis ra-100 with monitor ones for near feild. Clean, accurate, translates well, economical. :tu: :tu:
  8. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    Steve, I prefer the TASCAM PA150. It has rca and xlr balanced connectors. I previously owned the RA100. I have not tested the RA150, which i imagine is a much more modern project.
  9. coolcat

    coolcat Guest

    the yorks YSM1s' are also the ART SLM-1s'
    ...may save some money? supposedly very,very good 6.5"
  10. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    The Crown CE 1000, would be an amp to look at. I've seen it at $500 or less - and at least in the past, the power specs have been accurate, even conservative. Crown has been sort've "the" reference amp. Quality has been among the best, though I've not used this model. Worth a listen-hear...

    Teddy G.
  11. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Chicago area, IL, USA
    Home Page:
    Used Bryston. You can probably get a 2B or 3B with some warranty left on it for less than $500.
  12. Barkingdogstudios

    Barkingdogstudios Active Member

    Oct 29, 2003
    I'm with Massive on this one; Bryston.

    Even any of the older hi-current, lo-watt amps. Maybe an old Luxman, NAD, Naim amp if you really want to save $$.

    I use a Bryston 4B for my mid fields (vintage JBL 4311b). I also use one for my home speakers which are very inefficient (KEF 104ab). Those things are beasts!
  13. fbars

    fbars Guest

    You cannot go wrong with a good Crown, DC-300, DC300A, also in the series, D-150's [older] , D- 45's, D- 60's, D-75's.

    Tom Durso
    First Bass Audio
  14. redrabbit

    redrabbit Active Member

    Apr 24, 2004
    L:shock: :shock:K at all those recommendations!

    If I were to say, "If you were put all those amps behind a curtain, and played each one at the same volume(spl), could you tell them apart?"
    Imagine there are two different amps sitting on a showroom floor that I was concidering to purchase :

    #1 had an enclosure made of plywood and was painted with pink house paint.

    #2 had massive heatsink/fins flanking a highly polished gold plated metal body.....oh yeah, and one cool blue LED.

    .....and I got to listen to them.

    Well, YEAH....."the Gold one please, it must be heavy, I'm gonna need help getting it into my trunk, do you guys deliver?"

    (There is some chuckling) and the salesman informs me they're the same amp on the inside.
    Not likely to happen, but you get my exageration?

    No, I don't think all amps sound the same. Although it's fair to say that they sound much, much more alike, than they do sound different. But the fact is true that any amp will sound shitty when overdriven into clipping.

    So what is my recommendation? Get more power than you will need--leave some headroom. Also your speakers should be able to play louder than you need......just don't use that extra power, avoiding any distortion. That extra headroom allows the speaker/amp to recover faster durring heavy transients, resulting in a cleaner more detailed sound.
    Get one that has a reputation for durrability and has some extra guts.
    So basicly, I've come full circle, and any of the above amps will be fine----though on paper, my vote goes to a used Bryston--it's got it all, a real workhorse in and out of the studio.

  15. ShellTones

    ShellTones Guest

    Let's all go back and dig up some nearly two-year old threads and give the original poster our advice on what he should buy.

    There's nothing like good, timely advice! :?
  • AT5047

    The New AT5047 Premier Studio Microphone Purity Transformed

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