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Amps and Preams for Klipschorns


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I have a pair of vintage Klipschorns from the 50's.  One has a wooden midrange and the other is metal.  They are non-matching but compliment each other well and were upgraded with new crossovers built and designed by Meniscus audio.  THe corssovers have taps that allow the user to tailor the sound but I don't use them since they sound like a veil.  Anyway, the Khorns were in a 5 channel setup for years but we moved and now I have a chance to setup a dedicated two channel system with these great speakers and a home made 15" passive sub. 


For a preamp I would  really like to have bass management and a warm sounding amp.  I played around with tubes and while the sound was nice I would rather stay with SS of Fet amps. I would like opinions on what I have and what I can buy to get the best sound.  I'll also offer mine opinions to start. I am only into Vintage gear and only want to spend 1k for each piece of gear. I also need an amp for my sub with is very power hungry. 89 spl.



1. Adcom GFA-545: This was a mid grade amp in the day but is very popular in the used market and I guess a classic for providing good clean sound that is airy.  To me the Adcom seems very neutral and on the bright side.  Thinking it might not be a good match for my Klipschorns.  I have some Bose 901's - just because it was one of the first speakers I was turned on to and they are cool. Thinking of matching the 901's with the Adcom for the work room. 


2. B&K Sonata 200.2:  I love the simplicity of BK amps.  They are warm and seems to roll off the highs just enough and match well with the Klipschorns.  A very robust and punchy amp that sounds great with any Klipsch speaker.  


3. Luxman M-117:  Not vintage in the true sense - this was produced, I believe after they were acquired by Alpine. I haven't heard this amp and couldn't afford one of their class A amps but just acquired one on Ebay and should have it any day.  Not sure what to expect.  If the Sonata is its equal then it might make sense to bridge the Luxman and use it for a dedicated sub amp.  


I would be willing to sell any of the amps if anything else comes to mind that might get me the best sound.  I know that best is subjective but I guess I like a warm sounding amp that isn't shrilly.   I'm really into SACD and DVD-audio.  I also bought a bluetooth receiver that can be plugged into any preamp with rca connectors so I can stream uncompressed music from Deezer.  60 millions songs at the tip of my finger.  However, I still prefer the high rez discs.  



1. Anthem AVM-40 which is a 7 channel preamp with a very good 2 channel circuit and bass management.  Not sure how this will sound but the Anthem has a great reputation for great sound.

2. Sherwood Newcastle:  This is a good preamp but I can hear clicking when I adjust the volume. It is a 5.1 channel preamp with a analog pass through and bass management. 

3. Sherbourn 7030 preamp:  A very good sounding preamp with pass through.  Has excellent bass management.  Not a slouch by any means. 


High Rez players:


1. Oppo 103d:  A very nice player and very popular for being a good sounding player for not a lot of money.

2. Pioneer Elite 59avi:  Works great and has good DACS..  Not the best but sound nice. 


In conclusion,  I need to mix and match what I have or sell some items and replace them with better gear.  I would love to hear opinions on what I have and what I could buy to get the "best" sound in my price range of 1k used for each piece.  This includes a great 2 or 3 channel amp, a sub amp, a preamp (with bass management) and a player that plays SACD and DVD-Audio. 








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I bought vintage Khorns several years ago.  One is a 54 and one a 56.  Both wooden horns and have new crossovers.  My amps are two vintage McIntosh MC250's bi-amped. The pre is a Juicy Music Peach.  This sounds great to me.  I have also used a single MC2100 and it was very good as well.  I experimented with a Scott 299c and 222c as well.  To me the bi-amped system sounds the best.  It's all subjective.  I say experiment, there is no set answer, what fun would that be.  Good luck


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I have a Line Magnetic tube integrated that sounds great. However, I just purchased a First Watt J2 power amplifier and love it connected to my DAC/headphone amp. Waiting on my Rogue Audio preamplifier.

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