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SHL5 or C7 ES-3, good matching with Luxman L505u?

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  • #91
    Luxman, Sugden, Harbeth - tradition

    I owned the Sugden A21SE and ran it first with the ES2s and then the ESRs. I loved the sound of the amp but not the heat, high gain and power draw, and while I thoroughly enjoyed it I am happier with my US-model L-505u. I think the Lux works wonderfully with the Harbeths, and it's a beautifully-built and superb sounding amplifier that I plan to stick with a long time.

    The Sugdens are also special amplifiers, but with their own tradeoffs. Both sound terrific with the P3ESRs (only Harbeths I've owned) and while I happen to prefer the Lux, others will relish the Sugden's more "illuminated" sound. These three companies share a connection with tradition and an orientation to music over hifi that has changed the way I listen. Very nice to have the choice!

    best,


    o

    Comment


    • #92
      Sugden A21a personal opinion?

      Here are fews other notes:

      1) Sugden A21al lacks dynamic, bass impact and large scale sense;

      2) Resolution is impressive;

      3) The gain goes up too quickly;

      4) Mid-range is superb;

      5) Owner's manual pretty poor.

      Voilà!

      Sébastien

      Comment


      • #93
        Lux 550

        Sebastien: may I suggest that the best advice is to have the opportunity to audition the Lux 550 yourself, preferably in your own listening room, and let your ears be the best judge! It is impossible for others to chime in because we all have personal preferences to what sounds musical and 'right'. Let me give a personal example: I am not a Luxman owner but I have considerable experience with Accuphase gear, having owned their top-of-the-line class A/B amplifier (180 watts) as well as the opportunity to hear their ultimate integrated, a 30 watt class A. Like you, I tried sourcing for views and reviews but this left me even more confused. In the end I simply immersed myself in the task of deciding what I like best, given my musical taste, idiosyncracies, listening room, etc.

        Blessing on your audio journey!

        Best Regards
        Dennis

        Comment


        • #94
          Luxman v Sugden

          For the moment, last comments regarding the Sugden A21al:

          1) the transformer is a bit noisy;

          2) like an old Quad 405, it pops when the signal goes to the speaker after the warm-up.

          On another subject, to answer "denjo", I am probably someone who put a lot of credits to reviewer and personnal's critics of products. It is also interesting that it often happen that I try a product in my system and I found that critics where the same or similars as mine. Regarding the Sugden I borrow, I had the chance to read Stereophile critic after I already made myself an opinion on it is exactly what I think of that amplifier!

          Regarding the Luxman audition, we already discuss that on the HUG with EricW and others because Eric and I live in Canada where the only place we can hear Luxman (for exemple) is in Toronto, not close to my house... So comments are a necessity for me. Even more if they come from HUG members which I greatly trust.

          All of this story reminds some HUGers living North of Europe (Sweden, Norway, Finland), they will often decide to buy a pair of Harbeth based only on our comments, critics and suggestions. Sometimes, they haven't listen to the speaker at all! And I respect that, I already done this for my Luxman L-505u and critics where right.

          Now I need your opinions concerning the match between SHL5 and a Luxman L-550AII versus a Luxman L-505u.

          Thanks,

          Sebastien

          Comment


          • #95
            My turntable, Montreal & Harmonium

            Originally posted by Sebastien View Post
            Hi everyone,

            I've done all my listening tonight on vinyl with my beloved Rega P3, Dynavector DV-20X cartridge paired to a Moon LP5.3 phono preamp. First lp was Harmonium "Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison". I'll be glad to know a HUG member who know that album.
            Sebastien
            Sebastien:

            I grew up in Montreal a few years (okay, a couple of decades) before you, and have very fond memories of listening to CHOM-FM in the 1970s, when FM radio was still very free-form, not tightly programmed as it is today. Not only was the format very loose and eclectic, the beauty of CHOM was that it was bilingual: it played not only the staple album-oriented rock (and prog) of its day, it also broadcast a huge variety of great Francophone Quebec music: Harmonium, Beau Dommage, Offenbach, Michel Pagliaro, Jean-Pierre Ferland, and on and on - many of which became favourites, but which were probably mostly unknown in the rest of Canada. It was great for an Anglo kid to have that exposure: sadly, the bilingual broadcasting came to an end a few years later, I think.

            I think everything Harmonium did is great - Serge Fiori is a genius - but I think my favourite is still the first album, particularly the song Un musicien parmi tant d'autres which I love to this day.

            All the best,

            Eric

            Comment


            • #96
              Harmonium recordings

              Originally posted by EricW View Post
              I think everything Harmonium did is great - Serge Fiori is a genius - but I think my favourite is still the first album, particularly the song Un musicien parmi tant d'autres which I love to this day...
              Eric, I share the same view as you. Plus, their recording were excellent! Even if it was recorded in the 1970's, it is a lovely sound in 2010. I always have good time listening to their music. I know that they were also famous in the States by that time.

              Don't know about bilingual CHOM. Actualy, I listen mostly to Espace Musique, Radio-Canada's "music only" station and some independants stations (CIBL, CISM, etc.).

              Sebastien

              Comment


              • #97
                Espace Msuique

                Originally posted by Sebastien View Post
                Actualy, I listen mostly to Espace Musique, Radio-Canada's "music only" station and some independants stations (CIBL, CISM, etc.).

                Sebastien
                Me too! Espace Musique is my favourite station: a great mix of jazz, classical and world music. And intelligent announcers. Well worth finding online, even if you're not within range of a Canadian FM broadcast.

                Comment


                • #98
                  Luxman 550AII v. 505U and SHL5

                  Originally posted by Sebastien View Post
                  Now I need your opinions concerning the match between SHL5 and a Luxman L-550AII versus a Luxman L-505u.
                  Sebastien
                  Hi there,

                  Just wondering whether you've had the chance to audition the Luxman L550AmkII?

                  Your feedback regarding the difference between the 505 and 550 will be very much appreciated.

                  Thanks,

                  Comment


                  • #99
                    Luxman

                    Originally posted by do_Ob View Post
                    Hi there,

                    Just wondering whether you've had the chance to audition the Luxman L550AmkII?

                    Your feedback regarding the difference between the 505 and 550 will be very much appreciated.

                    Thanks,
                    Hi do_Ob,

                    As things are moving forward on my side, I sold my Luxman L-505u two weeks ago and I bought a Luxman L-590AII on Audiogon. I should receive it by the end of this week so I'll let you know my impression. I have a fair idea of the L-505u since I had it for 7 months.

                    Sebastien

                    Comment


                    • The quest continues ("Telle est ma quête..." - Brel) Luxman L-590AII

                      I receive my Luxman L-590AII five days ago. This amp is like a great wine. Subtile, refine, complex and you always want more. I'm happy because the L-590AII combines all the qualities that I founded in my previous Luxman L-505u, plus the ones of Sugden's and Zen's class A designs. It is yet dynamic, have a sense of large scale, timber are so accurate, voices are amazing, realist sound stage, bass are there, etc. Finally, this amp is really musical. Tube, solid state, class D, class A sounds? No, Luxman L-590AII.

                      Then, the phono stage still play in the range of a $2000 separated phono and the headphone circuit is also incredible.

                      A wonderful match with a pair of Harbeth SHL5.

                      Sebastien

                      Comment


                      • Harbeth + Luxman

                        Yes... I agree with your description there Sebastien!
                        Luxman and Harbeth goes well together with its excellent midband resolution.

                        The Class A amp also improves the warmth in the lower bass region where it reproduces a great combination where it is warm but not lethargic.

                        Top end... again... can't complain!

                        I do agree that the phono stage is top quality. The only thing I wished it had was a variable gain on the MC input. The Dynavector XX2mkII that I use is perfectly suited to it... but wished it had a bit more gain. Apart from that... it is one excellent phono stage in that I use it and reduced the clutter with my previous phono amp stage.

                        I also use a valve/tube amp... but I have not turned it on since owning the Luxman amp.

                        I'm happy with the entry L550AII and could only dream of owning the L590AII!
                        Still... I am happy.

                        Comment


                        • Luxman L590A11

                          Looks like the Luxman L590AII arrived just on time before Christmas. That is a nice present that will warm up nicely during this winter. Good to hear the amp is living up to your expectations. Being a Class A design I can imagine what that had been described.

                          Enjoy~

                          Comment


                          • Cartridge outputs

                            Originally posted by do_Ob View Post
                            I do agree that the phono stage is top quality. The only thing I wished it had was a variable gain on the MC input. The Dynavector XX2mkII that I use is perfectly suited to it... but wished it had a bit more gain...
                            I've just check the output of your cartridge: 0.28mV. On my side, my Dynavector DV20X high output has 2.8mV. The match with Luxman's phono stage is excellent. I can imagine that with a true low output moving coil, like yours, there is not enough gain. I saw a Luxman step up transformer actually on sale on Audiogon. This one will add 26 dB of gain to your set up. It might be an avenue.

                            Sebastien

                            Comment


                            • Harmonium record label

                              Originally posted by EricW View Post
                              ...I think everything Harmonium did is great - Serge Fiori is a genius - but I think my favourite is still the first album, particularly the song Un musicien parmi tant d'autres which I love to this day.

                              All the best,

                              Eric
                              For Eric (and other in interest), I just want to tell you that two Harmonium's albums have been reprint on 180 grams vinyl pressed in Germany. We are talking about "Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison" et "Harmonium" albums.

                              Enjoy,

                              S

                              Comment


                              • Luxman + harbeth = synergy

                                I bought the same combo based on your review and some others, i most have to say that i totally agree with you, Luxman harbeth an amzing synergy and pure musical sound with huge listening satisfaction.
                                regards
                                Originally posted by do_Ob View Post
                                Hey there Tudor,

                                The Luxman and Harbeth combination seems to work well. Personally, I have paired my C7ES-3s with Luxman L550AII and a Luxman D-06 CD/SACD Player.
                                The Luxman sound has fast,deep and rythmic bass drive and the CD player also shows this trait. There seems to be a signature where the bass frequencies gives warmth, speed/pace and control. The amp is also a powerful beast even for 20W, it is simply amazing the dynamic and impact this amp produces with the C7s. I am still amazed how much low end impact I am getting from this amp.

                                The overall sound has warmth yet it isn't slow, veiled or smeared in its delivery. The beauty with the 550AII is that it has a tubey sound with PRaT added as a bonus. I also run a tube setup as well.

                                The D-06 is approaching the effortless sound that vinyl produces. It can do micro detail and air. The decay is back which I thought can only be had with a turntable setup. Perhaps this is the difference between a Delta-Sigma DAC (my ex CD player had this DAC) vs PCM??? OR perhaps the discreet analogue output of the player? I don't know - but this D-06 has brought back my faith in the digital format. I'm also hoping to sample some SACD soon for the hell of it!

                                The 505u will probably have the same sonic signature I've mentioned above with its dynamic ability to punch some rythyms. With a pair of C7s or SHL5s, I think you'll be over the moon with the results. It is a musical combination!

                                Comment

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