I just bought an unexpected amp

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slinger
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I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by slinger »

Unexpected, as in, I wasn't actually looking to buy an amp, especially one of these "all singing, all dancing" affairs.

Short version: I was perusing eBay, as I often do, and was having a look at Arcam kit. I've always had a soft spot for Arcam, right back to my Alpha 2, bought new from Sevenoaks, in Sevenoaks, when they only had the one shop, which was the one in Sevenoaks. I've had an Alpha 8 and 8p combo, and an A75, and an Alpha 9 CD player that I wish I'd held onto for longer. In short, happy memories.

Damn you Peter Tyson and your "Manufacturer Refurbished - Arcam SA10" and damn you eBay for the "£75.00 off coupon" that you offered me. They're selling everywhere at between £699 - £750ish. Richer has them for £735.00 I bought mine for £450.00 delivered. Peter Tyson's website says they still have one in stock, but afaik I grabbed the last one, which is why it was a rather sudden acquisition.

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Condensed blurb:

Key Features

Extremely efficient class A/B amplification
50W of power per channel
5 analogue inputs including phono
3 digital inputs
32-bit DAC,Sabre ESS9016K2M
Full I/P control
Total harmonic distortion + noise = 0.003%
It's networked, so can be controlled (apparently) from my PC or via an app on a phone/tablet. Arcam's phono inputs have always been pretty decent, I shall have a shoot-out between the internal DAC and my Vincent. If the internal DAC proves to be a winner I can probably make most of the cost of the amp back by selling the Vincent DAC I bought a few weeks ago.

The only serious "downside" I could find from reading loads of reviews was that the bass was a bit iffy when using the analogue inputs, but (keeping my fingers crossed for the internal DAC) hopefully, I'll only be using two of the digital inputs.

In true Arcam tradition, there's a headphone socket on the front, which I expect to be decent, and if it pans out that the internal DAC is good enough then all I'll need is this amp and, eventually, a CD transport, so I can sell my Primare Amp and CD to hopefully cover the rest of the cost of the SA-10, plus a CD transport, probably a Cambridge Audio CXC.

I shouldn't have done it, but I had to do it. £450.00 was simply too good a price to turn down, and although it's "manufacturer refurbished" it will make a change from buying gear that's 5 or 10 years old.


QUICK REVIEW

Annoying bloke, but an interesting look at some of the internals.

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Latteman (Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:37 pm)
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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by Latteman »

Noted it has a pre out- I had a similar all singing all dancing Denon- no pre out- so u have options if u are not keen on the ‘amp sound’
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slinger (Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:45 pm)
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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by savvypaul »

CD transports - I found the Audiolab to be a good deal better than the Cambridge for only a little extra. YMMV.
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slinger (Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:45 pm)
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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by slinger »

Latteman wrote: Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:40 pm Noted it has a pre out- I had a similar all singing all dancing Denon- no pre out- so u have options if u are not keen on the ‘amp sound’
The pre-out will probably be powering my sub. That's the plan, anyway.
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Latteman (Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:47 pm)
Amps - NVA P50, AP30, A40, Stanislav Palo Tube Headphone Amp BB 85
Speakers - Monitor Audio Silver RX2
Cables - NVA LS1+LS3, SSC, Gotham S/PDIF, IBRA Optical
Digital - NAD C516BEE, SONY ST-SDB900 DAB TUNER, TEAC UD-H01 DAC
Analogue - Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Esprit SB, Graham Slee Gram Amp 2 Phono
Cans - Grado SR80, ATH-M50X

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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by Daniel Quinn »

You could have built one for that😏
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slinger (Mon Oct 11, 2021 10:44 pm)

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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by CN211276 »

I rate Arcam amps. Had one prior to discovering NVA.
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slinger (Mon Oct 11, 2021 10:44 pm)
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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by slinger »

Daniel Quinn wrote: Mon Oct 11, 2021 9:10 pm You could have built one for that😏
:lol:
I think what you may actually mean is that I could have purchased the components and then thrown away the mess I made with them.
Amps - NVA P50, AP30, A40, Stanislav Palo Tube Headphone Amp BB 85
Speakers - Monitor Audio Silver RX2
Cables - NVA LS1+LS3, SSC, Gotham S/PDIF, IBRA Optical
Digital - NAD C516BEE, SONY ST-SDB900 DAB TUNER, TEAC UD-H01 DAC
Analogue - Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Esprit SB, Graham Slee Gram Amp 2 Phono
Cans - Grado SR80, ATH-M50X

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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by Daniel Quinn »

slinger if i can do it with only my none dominant left hand working anyone can. it is very good at making your none dominant hand more dexterious..

Luther (now 7 ) is so taken with the idea he uses his none dominant hand to write with for 15 mins a day , because ive told him in 2 years he will be ambidexterious.

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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by Grumpytim »

Must admit I have a soft spot for Arcam, I had a CD72 which had a better sounding DAC than the Tag Mclaren DAC that was all the rage at that time. The amp was one of the early FMj range and was pretty decent. I'm going to sort of contradict myself here, I expect the onboard DAC to be pretty good, Arcam seem to have the knack with them, but I do worry about all the extraneous network stuff in the amp. If it gave it Airplay or Chromecast streaming capability then I can see the point. You could of course argue that a built in DAC in an amp is also extra electronic clutter, but if it works well then...

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Re: I just bought an unexpected amp

Unread post by savvypaul »

We bought a secondhand CD72 to use as a back-up at shows. Very decent.
I am in the hi-fi trade
Status: Manufacturer
Company Name: NVA Hi-Fi
https://nvahifi.co.uk/

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