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  1. #1
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    Got fine speakers; what's next?

    New to higher-end audio and I'm hoping someone out there will be kind enough to offer some general advisement.....

    I just got a pair of Paradigm Studio Reference 60 v3 and now I'm looking to find equipment that integrates beautifully with it. I'd like to be in the $2000 range (plus or, even better, minus) and I'm trying to see whether I should get a great receiver or whether I should get separates instead.

    If I go for a receiver, what would someone suggest I try out? Someone suggested the Marantz SR8300. Someone else said no way. Someone said that the Onkyo 701 is actually quite terrific. Someone else said that would be a huge mistake with these speakers. Someone else said it's Rotel or nothing. Help!

    If I go for separates, what pieces would someone put this together with? And is the difference between separates really that critical?

    Any advice would be warmly appreciated....

    Thanks,

    Harry

  2. #2
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    A few questions:
    1. I am assuming your into two channel, but not sure?
    2. Do you need source components?
    3. Can you please give the Paradigm's sensitivity and impedance.
    Remember, different isn't always better, but it is different.
    Keep things as simple as possible, but not too simple.
    Let your ears decide for you!

  3. #3
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    1. I am assuming your into two channel, but not sure?
    That's absolutely correct. A great two channel set-up is what I'm after.
    2. Do you need source components?
    Eventually, yes, but right now the plan is to hook up my ipod to it and have that be the main source. (The music on the ipod is either directly from CD or very large file downloads from the web.)
    3. Can you please give the Paradigm's sensitivity and impedance.
    The Paradigm's sensitivity is listed online as 91 dB/ 88 dB.
    The Paradigm's impedence is listed as "compatible with 8 ohms."

    Thanks again for taking the time to help me out,

    Harry

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harryt
    1. I am assuming your into two channel, but not sure?
    That's absolutely correct. A great two channel set-up is what I'm after.
    2. Do you need source components?
    Eventually, yes, but right now the plan is to hook up my ipod to it and have that be the main source. (The music on the ipod is either directly from CD or very large file downloads from the web.)

    Harry
    there is alot of great two channel equipment out there..... i would recommend anything from audio by van alstine...... its a small company based in minneapolis that has a reputation for great sound at a reasonable price....

    www.avahifi.com

    but most importantly - you need to get a "real" source component!!!! the best separates out there are going to sound like crap if you use mp3's as your source.... very limited fidelity!!!.... get a good cd player or an sacd player!

  5. #5
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    Hello, figure...

    ...I would chime in. I also have a pair of Studio 60s (v2, though).

    The Rotel gear mates well - I was using the 60s with the pre-pow 995/991. Never at a loss for dynamics and bass, pretty clean and overall good-sounding.

    However... if I were you, I would look for a sweet integrated. The Paradigms don't need too much power to shine, but a bit of warmth in the mids wouldn't hurt, IMO. Plenty of companies offer very capable, single box amps like Conrad-Johnson, Bryston, Classe, Arcam, Pathos, Sudgen, Unison Research and a bunch of others. And, hey, what the Hell... Rotel has cost-effective integrates also. Bottom line is you have to listen to everything in your area and see what you think will do the trick.

    Overall, I would put the Paradigms a bit on the dark, laid-back side of neutral. They do like a certain amount of power, but I wouldn't rule out a well-built 40 WPC.

    Don't forget room acoustics (if possible!) and enjoy the 60s.

  6. #6
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Those receiver models that you got pegged are multichannel AV models, which would give you a lot of unused functions if all you want is two-channel playback. If you plan to eventually add more speakers to your system, then your best bet is to stick with those options. AV receivers are workhorses that decode digital signals, handle multichannel amplification for a variety of formats, and basically serve as the nerve center for your entire home entertainment system. If you at all plan to use DVD or high resolution audio formats like SACD or DVD-A, then you should strongly consider planning for a multichannel system. The nice thing about receivers is that they have a lot of processing capabilities that give you virtual surround modes that you can use even with only two speakers, and allow you to enjoy better and better surround capabilities as you gradually add speakers to the system.

    Onkyo and Marantz are well regarded, as are Yamaha, Denon, and NAD. Any one of those makes should work fine. By virtue of its parametric room calibration feature, you should definitely consider the Yamaha RX-V1400 and RX-V2400 if you choose to go the receiver route.

    If you plan to stick with two speakers and have no interest in surround sound, then your budget is more than enough to go for some decent separates like Rotel, Parasound, Bryston, or Conrad-Johnson. Generally, separates give you a decent jump up in refinement and power handling capabilities, but they are more limited in their functionality than home theater receivers. It all depends on the degree to which you plan to scrutinize the sound quality of two-channel separates, relative to the added versatility, format support, and functionality that receivers have.

  7. #7
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    A decent amp, quickly followed by a CD player

    Quote Originally Posted by Harryt
    New to higher-end audio and I'm hoping someone out there will be kind enough to offer some general advisement.....

    I just got a pair of Paradigm Studio Reference 60 v3 and now I'm looking to find equipment that integrates beautifully with it. ...
    Harry
    For 2 channel, go for a decent amp. A few suggestions, (new):
    = NAD C352 integrated -- under US$550; or for more power ...
    = NAD C372 integrated -- under US$700
    = Creek 5350SE integrated -- $1345 at Audio Advisor
    = Parasound Halo P3 & A23, pre-amp+power -- $1550

    Easily within your budget (at least with the NAD) get a good CD player, e.g.
    = NAD C542 -- under $700
    = Rotel 1072 -- approx. $700

  8. #8
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    one more questions: Do you live in an area where you have good high-end dealers? The reason for this is due to the fact that home demos are the key when buying audio gear!

    That being written, I would recommend going with an integrated amp. There are many good ones out there. I feel they give you the best value for your money! Before I give my recommendations, I would like the answer to my question, please.
    Remember, different isn't always better, but it is different.
    Keep things as simple as possible, but not too simple.
    Let your ears decide for you!

  9. #9
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    To answer your question

    Do you live in an area where you have good high-end dealers?

    I do indeed. There are plenty of high-end dealers but their advice has been conflicting and, it seems to me, pretty self-serving. If they carry Rotel, then that's what the inevitably recommend. It might just be because they really believe in it or else it's less generous than that. Who knows? Anyway, that's what I really appreciate about this site and about the people who have taken the time to write out their thoughts. I'm very thankful for that people have taken the time and energy to help out a stranger. Makes he hope that someday I'll have enough knowledge about this stuff to want to give back, too. We'll see.

    Thanks, everyone, for giving me these things to think about. I'll keep reading these suggestions as long as people keep making them.

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