• 08-09-2009, 12:11 PM
    RGA
    What I have to say on this matter ends up coming across as zealotry so I merely state my preference which happens to have support from what people have found. The best SS amplifier that I ever auditioned was a Sugden A21a in the early 1990's - I didn't know then why but it was the first time that an amplifier didn't sound like an amplifier - All Bryston and Krell amps sound hard tinny and thin. It has nothing to do with control - controlling overly complex low efficiency and thus IMO badly designed loudspeakers is of zero interest to me. Being able to control long throw woofers (the worst sounding woofer design IMO) may be something the Bryston's do better but then so what? They bring a host of other nasties to the table. I don't want to get on Bryston because in fact it was Bryston who got me interested in high end audio - and they're a LOT better than most in terms of bang for the buck and have tremendous customer support and warranty and all of that stuff. They're a good buy in many ways but the more that I have auditioned over the years the further they get left behind for me.

    Of course Single Ended amps will have huge problems driving the kind of speakers that the likes of Bryston are designed to drive. The issue around types of distortion is again blather that clouds the actual issue - the listening experience - which is the ONLY damn thing that actually matters. No doubt SS makers like to blather about numbers and spec sheets and measurements because they can avoid the actual listening.

    I directly compared a big separates Bryston with an 8watt SET on speakers that the 8 watt SET was happy with. The SET had deeper more articulate bass - not flabby not warm not distorted - clearer differentiation of bass lines. You could hear MORE of the instruments in space with more shadings the brush. Treble was just as high but there was a breathy three dimensional sound. Some argue that a semi-conductor sounds like it's semi-sound or half the sound and it's not IMO too far off. While the noise level of the Bryston is very low - it also sounded thin and sterile. Taking noise away may take away some of the ambiance that you don't want taken away along with it. Which is "might" many owners of top cassette decks preferred no Dolby noise reduction to noise reduction.

    The problem with SS versus tube arguments is people want to shift the conversation to something else like "you only like SETs because they add more distortion" which in turn alludes to the fact that they are "tricking you and it won't last" when in reality most of the tube guys under the age of 40 grew up with SS - and made the shift as can be seen on the AA forum. SE tube amps require an entire system re-think and that is very hard for people to do financially because ti very likely requires a new amp and a new set of loudspeakers. Not to mention the huge difficulty of finding dealers willing to take on the financial burden to carry them. No small dealer will touch SETs because they need floorspace to sell easy to sell big corporation stuff. Plus if the dealer is younger and less knowledgeable he's going to have to know how to bias them - tube replacements - and tubes blow - more consumers without much knowledge will have more problems which means more work for dealers. It's far easier to sell Bryston.

    I always go back to this review on AA - because it practically mirrors my own experience as a PMC Bryston fan back in the day. The difference is he had the BIG Bryston and PMC system - which is pretty much "like" a Krell Dynaudio system in that it's all about big power big speakers with big slam!

    This guy should be a reviewer - he writes very well to boot. http://www.audioasylum.com/reviews/O...al/345133.html
  • 08-12-2009, 03:29 PM
    JohnMichael
    The Krell is here, the Krell is here. Two hours out of the box the things that impress me are the lack of congestion and confusion in my cd's. I am enjoying greater definition, soundstaging and accurate instrumental sounds. Blows the Onkyo out of the water with the Mobile Fidelity OML 1's. Will write more after a few weeks of listening.
  • 08-12-2009, 06:22 PM
    Mr Peabody
    JM, get a chance to run the volume up any? Say something when you spin an LP.
  • 08-19-2009, 05:44 PM
    Ajani
    JM, how's the audition going??? Don't leave us hanging... remember we're living vicariously through you on this one...

    So is the Krell the real deal or just an over hyped brand name???
  • 08-19-2009, 06:49 PM
    JohnMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ajani
    JM, how's the audition going??? Don't leave us hanging... remember we're living vicariously through you on this one...

    So is the Krell the real deal or just an over hyped brand name???


    I am very pleased with the sound. I will be writing a review soon. The Krell has shown me how other cheaper amps I have owned were colored. There is no electronic haze or grunge. One familiar song I was listening to surprised me when the background singers began to sing and I realized there were six of them and they were in a line toward the back of the soundstage. Normally they were disembodied voices and now the voices belonged to flesh and blood singers. Much more to tell but it has only been a week.
  • 08-21-2009, 01:06 AM
    RGA
    Congrats but you should know that Krell has just issued a recall on many of their amplifiers for being a fire hazard and that over 2000 units are affected. They advise not to use the amplifiers so try and figure out if your model is one of the ones under recall. I think it's only a few models so you're probably ok but to be on the safe side ...
  • 08-21-2009, 01:09 AM
    RGA
    Ok according to one website the model numbers recalled are KAV-250a, KAV-250a/3, KAV-500i and KAV-1500 - they can catch fire. I don't know if these are the only models affected but these are four amplifiers that are listed. For other Krell owners on the board who may own these amps - or if people know owners of them let them know.
  • 08-21-2009, 05:23 AM
    Mr Peabody
    I wonder if this is a hoax as some models listed have been discontinued for almost 10 years. I'd think if they were going to catch fire we'd know by now. Good to post it though in case, I'll have to check into this.
  • 08-21-2009, 05:47 AM
    Mr Peabody
    I guess this makes it official: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml09/09312.html

    Still very odd this comes up after all this time. I don't know how Google works but this link was #16, the Krell website if it came up must have been much further down the list, mostly what came up first was the various forum chatter.

    I'm going to get my 500i serial number and look into this.
  • 08-21-2009, 09:29 AM
    RGA
    Krell says the fuses need to be replaced - apparently they used inferior ones and will send money to owners to change them out.

    The information was confirmed and sent to enjoythemusic.com's editor - scroll down to 07 / 29 / 09

    http://www.enjoythemusic.com/news/0709/
  • 08-21-2009, 09:32 AM
    Mr Peabody
    unbelieveable
    I just learned from Krell after submitting my serial number that my amp is one of the suspect units. From what I've found it appears to be some fuses that need replaced but Krell ships a "correction kit" and I'm not sure yet what is in it.
  • 08-21-2009, 10:15 AM
    Mr Peabody
    RGA, I owe you a big thanks for bringing this out. I've run my 500i hard and it's always drove my Dyn's with out incident. I wonder if they bought a bad batch of fuses or if the amp has to get to a certain temperature. Or, more likely if some one got crazy enough to blow the fuse it didn't protect the unit and the damage occurred. We may never know. In case anyone's interested I will post back when I find out more about the kit.
  • 08-21-2009, 03:43 PM
    Ajani
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mr Peabody
    Or, more likely if some one got crazy enough to blow the fuse it didn't protect the unit and the damage occurred.

    That would be my guess... given the age of the amps on recall, if it was really a design flaw that affected regular use, I'd expect the recall to have occurred many years ago...
  • 08-21-2009, 03:44 PM
    RGA
    All I can say is nobody should make fun of Chinese made amplifiers for design and build quality.
  • 08-21-2009, 03:55 PM
    Ajani
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RGA
    All I can say is nobody should make fun of Chinese made amplifiers for design and build quality.

    lol - sad but true... I've seen recalls from many major brands...
  • 08-21-2009, 06:12 PM
    Mr Peabody
    Krell is sending me the kit, says it's just replacing the rail fuses. Says it should take 20 minutes and if I return a certificate showing the work was done I will receive 150 smackers.

    Most of the Chinese amps I've seen are just copies of existing designs so the design itself should be good. It's the workmanship that sucks in most instances. A friend bought a no name Chinese tube amp with EL34's for $150.00. Only two inputs but it sounds better than a $150.00 amp should. It's the size and shape of a small shoe box.

    I'd really like to know the story behind this Krell thing. You really have to wonder when Krell first knew of the problem and if they tried to wait it out before doing something or did it take the incidents to flush out the defective part.
  • 08-21-2009, 06:26 PM
    RGA
    For the money Krell charges there should be no problems. But I suppose it happens and at least they've done something about it. Some small high end makers are after all at the mercy of suppliers - for all we know the fuse manufacturer is to blame. Krell did something about it and that's all you can really ask for.

    My remarks about the Chinese made amps were partly tongue in cheek. After living in China and seeing first hand most of the build quality of everything - the jokes are very much well earned.

    That said I recently reviewed a $4,200 Rita 880 integrated amp from Grant Fidelity which is made in China - for build quality I'll stack it up against any Krell - it's better built IMO than any Krell integrated I've seen as well. The comapny that makes the Grant Fidelity Rita OEM's for other top flight American companies - only they sell for a lot more money.

    It's a shame so many people read watt numbers and actually pay them any attention "The RITA-880 puts out only a claimed 45Wpc at full tilt, yet it drove the power-hungry PSB Synchrony Two Bs with much greater ease than could my twice-as-powerful Simaudio Moon Classic i5.3 integrated. Even at moderate listening levels, the RITA-880 somehow managed to smoke the Sim when it came to motivating the PSBs’ woofers. When I fed the Grant-PSB combination "Jump," from Van Halen’s Best of Volume I (CD, Warner Bros. 46332-2), I was vaulted directly into the over-the-top arena-rock concerts of my well-spent youth. Want pounding drums? You got it! Want guitars so crunchy you think you’ve got a Marshall amp stack in the room? You got it! Want the enormous wall of fuzzy sound created by a 1980s synthesizer? Rock on, man! http://www.soundstageav.com/onhifi/20081001.htm

    A tube amp for people who want so called "grip" and power. I have heard $70,000 worth of Krell amps - I'd take the Rita 880 for $4K (but for the watt crazy - it is capable of 450 watts)
  • 08-21-2009, 06:28 PM
    jrhymeammo
    Good post.
    I wonder how many of them actually caught on fire. Did some of those units have stuffed animal laying on top of it?

    JM,
    I'm pretty sure you've already done this, but make sure your amp is not running hot. If not, I'll say you got nothing to worry about. One thing I wanted to ask, did you replace the fuse with the one you had in your Onkyo? I've been very curious about the ceramic fuse, and would love to find out if they are actually worth it or just a giant hype.

    Enjoy your amp,
    JRA
  • 08-21-2009, 06:35 PM
    jrhymeammo
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RGA

    It's a shame so many people read watt numbers and actually pay them any attention "The RITA-880 puts out only a claimed 45Wpc at full tilt, yet it drove the power-hungry PSB Synchrony Two Bs with much greater ease than could my twice-as-powerful Simaudio Moon Classic i5.3 integrated. Even at moderate listening levels, the RITA-880 somehow managed to smoke the Sim when it came to motivating the PSBs’ woofers. When I fed the Grant-PSB combination "Jump," from Van Halen’s Best of Volume I (CD, Warner Bros. 46332-2), I was vaulted directly into the over-the-top arena-rock concerts of my well-spent youth. Want pounding drums? You got it! Want guitars so crunchy you think you’ve got a Marshall amp stack in the room? You got it! Want the enormous wall of fuzzy sound created by a 1980s synthesizer? Rock on, man! http://www.soundstageav.com/onhifi/20081001.htm

    A tube amp for people who want so called "grip" and power. I have heard $70,000 worth of Krell amps - I'd take the Rita 880 for $4K (but for the watt crazy - it is capable of 450 watts)

    Perhaps this should be discussed in a different post, but I think you are comparing completely different amps here. I'll post a different thread in a moment.

    JRA
  • 08-22-2009, 02:23 AM
    JohnMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jrhymeammo
    Good post.
    I wonder how many of them actually caught on fire. Did some of those units have stuffed animal laying on top of it?

    JM,
    I'm pretty sure you've already done this, but make sure your amp is not running hot. If not, I'll say you got nothing to worry about. One thing I wanted to ask, did you replace the fuse with the one you had in your Onkyo? I've been very curious about the ceramic fuse, and would love to find out if they are actually worth it or just a giant hype.

    Enjoy your amp,
    JRA




    JRA the S 300i is somkin' hot in my system. It is burning up the tracks. Luckily no safety issues.

    Oh and as far as replacing the fuse in the Krell with the one from the Onkyo I do not think they would be of the same value. I had no problem opening the case of the Onkyo and changing a fuse which probably voided the warranty. I doubt if I would be very comfortable in changing the Krell's fuse. There is an externaly accessable fuse but for now I am leaving well enough alone. In the instruction book Krell states that the design of the amp is such that you should use the supplied power cord and no power conditioning is needed. Judging by the lack of any of the grunge or electrical noise I had with the CA 640A the power supply is very well designed.
  • 08-22-2009, 09:05 AM
    Mr Peabody
    It is normal for a Krell amp to be warm to the touch or even hot, I guess it depends on what one's reference is for hot. It shouldn't be to the point you couldn't keep your hand on it. Definitely a good idea to have plenty of ventilation. The amp that worried me was the 300iL which was the first integrated to use the silver polished aluminum. That thing put out some heat and I thought Krell made a mistake making it so sleek and not providing better heat syncs. As far as I know no issues with it though.
  • 08-22-2009, 10:15 AM
    JohnMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mr Peabody
    It is normal for a Krell amp to be warm to the touch or even hot, I guess it depends on what one's reference is for hot. It shouldn't be to the point you couldn't keep your hand on it. Definitely a good idea to have plenty of ventilation. The amp that worried me was the 300iL which was the first integrated to use the silver polished aluminum. That thing put out some heat and I thought Krell made a mistake making it so sleek and not providing better heat syncs. As far as I know no issues with it though.



    A review I read on an earlier Krell integrated model said that it did not have enough heat sinking to maintain it's high output for extended periods of time. The case on the S 300i is warm but not hot to the touch. Tomorrow will be devoted to some vinyl and long term listening. I am sure some volume limits will be passed to check out amp and speakers.
  • 08-24-2009, 11:02 AM
    JM, you now have had integrateds at different price-point / levels and I hope you include some comparisons in your review. Can't wait to read it.

    I still have my GCC-250 as my stand-by and aside from a little overly dark mids it is still a fantastic integrated, especially for a class-d based one.