Jump to content

Help with choosing integrated Amp for Khorns


Recommended Posts

Help with suggestions for integrated amps for my Klipschorns. My price range is the $1500.00 range.

Is anyone using any of these?

Peachtree Nova 150

Cambridge Audio CXA80

Marantz HD Amp1  [only 35 watts at 8 omns]

I will have to buy a separate  phono stage for the bottom two. 

I have never posted before but have been helped many times reading advice from the forum.

I'm trying to narrow down my choice to two and order both and send one back.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome to the forum!


Read reviews.

  • Look for bench tests that tell you what continuous power and peak power each amp actually puts out at a nominal 8 ohms.  If your room is 3,000 cu ft or less, the 35 watt Marantz would be powerful enough for ALMOST all music, if it is 35 watts per channel continuous, both channels operating, 20 to 20KHz, at a decent distortion level (< 0.09%), at a nominal 8 Ohms.  Your Khorns will put out 112 dB per channel at listening position (~~~15 feet) at about 35 watts.  Theoretically, the Marantz should be able to put out peaks at twice that power (70 watts, or 115 dB at 15 feet in a 3,000 cu ft room).  Believe it or not, some people, very occasionally, would like a few louder peaks.   Paul Klipsch's view was that to produce "the blood stirring levels of a symphony orchestra you need 115 dB at your ears."     He should have known;  he used to record them and measure them.  Some would say that it's O.K. if you can only produce the maximum desired level (continuous or peak) with both stereo channels going full tilt, and are limited to producing 3 dB less from each speaker.  That might be true if the percussion, and anything else that is going to get really loud, were always dead center, so the two channels can share the burden.  This is not always the case.  Also, remember that the 115 dB level is the level for extremely brief dynamic peaks.  As an average level, Klipsch and Keele characterized 115 dB as, "Too Damn Loud," and it is.  OSHA will permit that level for only 15 minutes continuously, and I hear that they have recently made their standards more stringent.
  • Also look for subjective comments on the sound.  Have on hand several grains of salt.  If one is characterized as "bright," consider avoiding it; go for "warm."
  • It would be great if you could hear some of those amps with Khorns.


See Dope from Hope Vol. 16, No.1 January 1977 "Amplifier Power to Drive Klipsch Systems;" also "Yawns or Goosebumps?" if anyone has a copy they can scan.  This last is unduly optimistic, IMHO, because it divides the 60 watts needed by 3, because there are three speaker systems in the "Klipsch Wide Stage Stereo" array.  As mentioned above this might be true if each speaker shared the burden equally, but there are no guarantees.  


The old rule of the thumb was to avoid amplifiers of less than 100 watts per channel, not because of power issues, but because most manufacturers did not make a "good" amplifier of less than 100 w.p.c.  I'm betting thhat the Marantz is a modern exception, as are several tube amps.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, davisahf said:

Thank you for the info. I will look into the bench tests and read as many subjective comments I can find.


You listen with your ears. In my opinion, listening to as many amps as you can is the best way to determine the amp that will best suit your needs.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...