Amp upgrade with Canton speakers: Feasibility study

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Asit

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Edited to provide some indexing to help a new reader find the relevant part he/she may be looking for in this very long thread filled with very valuable inputs from the members (this indexing is copied from post #4 of the thread http://www.hifivision.com/amplifier...ost-disc-speakers-amps-such-things-life.html:)

PART I: Post #1 (page 1) to Post #58 (page 6)
Introduction, Discussion of a variety of amps
(Post #56 on page 6 has the first mention of Leben CS300, the amp ultimately purchased)

PART II: Post #59 (page 6) to Post #126 (page 13)
The Auditions: Quad 909/99 (Post #59, page 6), Cadence VA-1 (Post #68, page 7), Cayin A-88T (Post #96, page 10)
(Post #119 on page 12 has the Leben CS300 mentioned for the second time)

PART III: Post #127 (page 13) to Post #286 (page 29)
Pre-Power: Discussions on active and passive pre-amplifiers and power amplifiers
(This is the longest and the most technical part. This part ends with the news of dinyaar's acquisition of his new Accuphase E350 integrated amp)

PART IV: Post #287 (page 29) to Post #360 (page 36)
Speakers: Sensitivity, wattage requirements etc
(This section involves more the low powered tube amps, especially the 12 wpc Leben CS300 amp quite prominently)

PART V: Post #361 (page 37) to Post #448 (page 45)
The Purchase: Impressions, Feed-back and Burn-ins

Sub-part V(a): Post #361 (page 37) to Post #367 (page 37)
New Speaker Cable

Sub-part V(b): Post #368 (page 37) to Post #435 (page 44)
The New Amp: Leben CS300

Sub-part V(c): Post #436 (page 44) to Post #448 (page 45)
New IC Burn-in

PART VI: Continuing since Post #449 (page 45)
Speaker Positioning and Stands


Now, the first post as it was originally posted:

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The purpose of this thread is to explore the possibility of an amp upgrade in my stereo setup and determine what is the minimum level needed to achieve a significant improvement over the current set-up.

Some of you may already know my current modest setup from other threads. Well for everybody, the core of the set-up comprises of a Nad c325bee integrated stereo amp, a CA azur 740c cdp and a pair of Canton Karat 60 speakers. My setup has other elements like cassette players etc too, but for this discussion let us skip those.

Since most of you would not have any idea of my speakers and not much is currently available on the net, let me try to give you as much information as I could gather. These speakers were bought in Germany in 1989 and since then have made two transcontinental trips to finally settle down in Kolkata and very unusually I have lost most of the documentation on them on the way somewhere. Most of the information I am giving below is from a scanned version of the tech spec written in German that I found from the net after a lot of serach in german sites.

Canton Karat 60
-price paid: 2000 Deutsche Mark in 1989, top of the line of the Karat series at their production time.
-Description: Large bookshelf / floorstanding speakers
-3-way bass-reflex (confused about this, do not see any hole anywhere, except for something very narrow near the tweeter)
-Crossover freqency: 450/4500 Hz
-Woofer: 260 mm (10.2"), Midrange: 120 mm (4.7"), Tweeter: 25 mm (1") Aluminum-Manganese dome
-Nominal impedence: 4 Ohm
-Power rating: 100/150 Watt (nominal/max)
-Frequency range: 22 - 30,000 Hz
-Sensitivity: SPL (1 W, 1 m) = 93.4 dB
-Distortion: less than 0.7%
-Emission angle: more than 125 degrees
-Flankensteilheiten (Steepness?): 12/12-12/12 dB/octave
-Dimensions: W x H x D = 31 cm (12.2") x 58 cm (22.8") x 31 mm (12.2"), Volume 56.6 l (each)
-Weight 16.5 Kg (each)
-Use: For amplifiers upto 130 Watts, for rooms upto 55 sq metres (592 sq ft)

That's all the tech. information I got about these speakers, folks! The sound is simply marvellous. Recently when I was auditioning different CDPs in a similar setup as home, the Dali Ikon 6, for example, came way short in overall performance, something that was so obvious that my 17 year old son who grew up listening to these Canton speakers smilingly admitted in the showroom.

The little Nad (50 wpc @ 8 Ohms) drives them very well. Can't remember ever going past 11 O'clock in the volume knob. The room is largish by Indian city standard (16' x 25'). The soundstage is huge and usually at that volume the whole apartment is filled with music.

As I have said already plenty of times in this forum in different threads that I am more than happy with my CDP 740c. It has a lot of details, yet very musical at all freq ranges. In addition it has a crisp at the same time smooth presentation usual in analogue sources (I am very familiar with good quality analogue sources (untill recently I had a Dual CS 5000 turntable and a 3 head cassette deck with bias control both of which have died because of age).

So the obvious point of upgrade is the amp - the little Nad c325bee.

I would not say I am totally unhappy with the amp. Actually I am quite happy about many things that it does. In brief there are three things I like to mention I like very much : It produces a decent soundstage, dynamic response is the best in this price range extending up to quite pricier products, it creates correctly the emotional and musical atmosphere.

I know a lot of people thrash Nad in general, and the c325bee in particular. From whatever little I know about music and especially the kind of music I listen to (mostly Indian classical music, although I listen to all kinds of music), my little Nad, especially with proper source and speakers, conveys the music better than many above its price range.

I tend to ignore many of its shortcomings (which are also well-known, for example lack of clarity and details that I ideally want, lack of desired overall punch at times, some colorations etc etc) because for the price I pay more importance to the criteria in the above paragraph I consider more important for music, especially Indian classical music. To give an example, in our musical culture we do not mind Ravi Shankar tuning his Sitar or Bhimsenji clearing his throat in the middle of their concerts, because we are more interested in the exposition of the ragas they are playing or singing.

But now if I want to improve on the details, clarity, punch and timing while keeping the strengths of the Nad intact (or even improved), I would like to know what are my options within as little budget as possible. In other words, whether significant improvement is possible, let's say, by investing 50K (for example) on an integrated amp. Or do I have to spend 75-80 K at least for that, or an even higher amount? BTW, I do NOT need a lot of power, anything that drives my Cantons as well as the Nad.

Based on your inputs, I have to plan my finances and do feasibility studies. All the experts, please help. This kind of excercise may help other people too. I may or may not end up upgrading my amp in the immediate future.
 
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dinyaar

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Hi Asit,
No experience with canton.
U are happy with the speakers and the cdp and the current amp drives the speaker well is what u are saying. The speakers are almost 20 years old and sensitivity is on the higher side so the Nad (80 WPC @ 4 ohms) is not lacking in drive, but in detail and punch.
I would say keep the current set up till the speakers last and upgrade both amp and speakers at a later date while retaining the cdp. No point in making small side ways moves as u may lose something u cherish in the quest for detail/timing/punch. No amplifier is perfect even if one starts spending big bucks.
I thought the Nad C 320 BEE was the best Nad in a long time so if this is similar its a fair amplifier.

Rgds
 

marsilians

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Asit

Very good article and you raise many interesting points. I will post a detailed reply in a bit. For the moment, I am thinking adding a power amp will give you the best bang for buck for a very small investment. Will explain the details ASAP.
 

dinyaar

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Hi,
The preamp section of all nad seem to be avarage at best so adding a power amp may not add much IMO. I am jittery mixing brands when choosing a pre/power.Unless one is going for top class preamps(ML for example) or go for tubes its better to go with the power amp from the same brand as they are tweaked to suit the other and are a perfect handshake. Keeping this in mind a Nad power amp for about 50K may not give Asit what he wants.

Asit can u not get a few amps to demo with your speakers? A 372 for example will sound more or less like the Nad pre/power and a used one can be got cheap. For the budget u mention a Marantz PM 15 S1 should be available which is a superb amplifier for a variety of speakers and better than all Nad in every aspect. Since u are using a CA cdp maybe a CA amp may be in order.( though i do not like CA amps)

Options are many as always, the point i am unsure about is the the amount of improvement versus the cost incurred.

Rgds
 

square_wave

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I would be inclined to agree with Dinyaar here. Upgrade the amp and speaker together. Go in for a combination that is known to work with the music you listen to.
But if you want to upgrade the amplifier here are my thoughts:
I used to own a few nad amps before. The 320bee and 350. The 350 was a better amplifier. These amps are champs for the money you pay. They do some of the important things right.
But they have their own set of shortcomings.
1. Hazy detail in the highs.
2. Not very detailed or tight in the lows.
3. Mid-range is something they do alright but this also can be improved.
4. Not very transparent.
5. Slightly colored sound.
You can improve on most of these things by bypassing the preamplifier with a good preamp. I used a C350 with this preamplifier here for almost a year.
Acoustic Portrait PM1
Corrson - India's only DIY Store for Hi-End Audio
The difference was substantial. I am not kidding you.
Then I upgraded to the odyssey stratos power amplifier. Major improvement again especially in the transparency and control areas.
 

Asit

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Dinyaar, marsilians and square_wave,

thanks for your thoughtful inputs. Well, the general opinion everywhere is that the pre-amp section of the Nads is the weaker link, so adding a power amp to the pre-out may not improve things.

Now if I accept that, then there are 3 options:

i) As suggested by dinyaar and square_wave, I do not go for the amp upgrade at this time, rather wait until the speakers give up or at least show signs of old-age illness, then go for a joint upgrade of amp and speaker. While this is a more reasonable approach, what it means is that I will have to dish out a lot of money at one point of time, which may not be possible for me. Moreover these speakers have spoiled us for so many years and so badly, it will be hard to settle for tinny speakers. Let me also ask you: with careful usage what is the average lifetime of a set of good speakers?

ii) Go for some integrateds. Choices are aplenty. Only problem is in Kolkata there are only a few of them available for auditioning (preferably at home with these speakers) and the other issue is whether that will give me what I want.
Now that statement "what I want" has to be modded with the finances available. For sure, I will never have an amp costing a few lakhs of rupees. So the question is more on the balance of finances and a possible significant improvement over the current set-up.
The choices on the integrated amps are:

Marantz: PM 7001, PM 7001 KI, PM 15S1

Nad: C352 and C372 (probably already replaced by 355bee and 375bee)

CA: 740A, 840Av2

Rotels: not very familiar with the numbers here

Rega: Mira 3

Creek: Evo and the classic 5350

Music Hall: A25.2

Arcam: Diva A70 (still available), FMJ A 18 and A 28

Roksan: Kandy L3 and the new Kandy K2

Cyrus: 6 and 8

Primare: I21

Densen: B110

I have covered almost everything upto about 80K (?). These are all SS.

If I consider hybrid and tube, then there are Vincent and Jolida available within this range.

The question is which one is the most likely to provide the improvements in the areas mentioned in my first post. Knowing Germans at that time (I lived there from 88 to 92), the specs on the speakers are conservative and most of the above would drive these speakers well I would guess (especially keeping the high senstivity in mind).

iii) The only pre/power combo within this kind of budget (other than the Nad and perhaps the Rotel combo) is the Parasound NewClassic 2100 pre and 2125 power. If these are reasonable, I can perhaps even consider buying the pre first and then after a few months get the power amp. That will also keep the finance department happy.
Emotiva is another brand around the same price point, but do not know of their availability in India.

I checked the site suggested by square_wave. The PM1 pre is above my budget for a pre, NJ1 can surely be considered.

OK fellas, please keep the discussion going. I upgrade or not, at least the discussions will keep a smile on my face for a few weeks.
 

dinyaar

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Hi Asit,
My god u have listed out too many options.
In case u want to go for an amp now i suggest u go for a real cracker with sufficient drive and power to drive a wide variety of speakers. So in case ur speakers give up u are not restricted in ur speaker purchase.
Budget pre/powers (NAD or Advance Ac or Rotel) are not great IMO and Rotel is definately not worth 1.15L.
Ill list a few options that i would consider. Of course the usual caveat that u have to hear them for yourself before u buy.
1) Used Bryston gear. (Lots of gear available) Solid state and no excuses but very detailed, dynamic and superb bass. 20 years of peace if u like the way they sound.
2)Marantz PM 15 S1. Very good amp. Very fluid and smooth and pure marantz.
Great build and controls and should last for long. 7001 or the KI are good but this 15 SI is better.
3)Primare I 30 is a good amp if u like that sound. The I 21 wont give u the flexibility for speakers.
4) The Arcam FMJ. As good in build and quality as the Primare and even better in certain aspects. Look for the bigger ones. The preamp is fantastic but expensive and the new A38 is superb too.
5) Densen gear is great but expensive. HAve not heard a densen for long but it should be very" primare " sound. Have no clue of indian availability or pricing.

Going Nad 352/372 is going side ways and Rotel/rega/music hall is the same. The Rega amps i heard, i didn't like and i never liked the cyrus amps(cdp yes). Roksan Kandy did not sound good in my set up and the caspian is not worth the price as there are tons of good amps at the 2L price point. The CA 740/840 i have not heard so cant comment.

Am not a tube guy so cant really comment on the various amps out there.

Lastly if i am careful and treat my speakers well i should expect a decade of music. U have got twice that from ur pair and that is testimony to the quality then. I would not expect the same now.
Hope this helps

Rgds
 
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marsilians

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Going Nad 352/372 is going side ways and Rotel/rega/music hall is the same. The Rega amps i heard, i didn't like and i never liked the cyrus amps(cdp yes).

Hi Dinyaar,

While the Rotel and NADs are comparable in sound repro once properly level matched, the Rega has definitely a better soundstage than the 2 though it costs a fair amount more as well.

When I first listened to a Rotel CDP the 1072, I felt it was a bit low in bass but when I level matched my speakers and did a second audition to the same set, the sound seemed much more livlier as compared to the NAD (I think it was a 342 but not fully sure).
 

Asit

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1) Used Bryston gear. (Lots of gear available) Solid state and no excuses but very detailed, dynamic and superb bass. 20 years of peace if u like the way they sound.
2)Marantz PM 15 S1. Very good amp. Very fluid and smooth and pure marantz.
Great build and controls and should last for long. 7001 or the KI are good but this 15 SI is better.
3)Primare I 30 is a good amp if u like that sound. The I 21 wont give u the flexibility for speakers.
4) The Arcam FMJ. As good in build and quality as the Primare and even better in certain aspects. Look for the bigger ones. The preamp is fantastic but expensive and the new A38 is superb too.
5) Densen gear is great but expensive. HAve not heard a densen for long but it should be very" primare " sound. Have no clue of indian availability or pricing.

- Where are these Bryston used gear available? Would you kindly give me some contacts? (although I doubt I can even afford used Brystons unless they are about 20 years old!)

- I myself have also shortlisted Marantz PM 15S1 and Arcam FMJ A 18 and A 28.

- Both Arcam A 38 and Primare I 30 are way above 1L, otherwise I would really want to have them. The I 30 is praised by everybody.

- Densen India distributor is Focal Audio Systems, Pune. AVMax quotes the price of B110 integrated at slightly above 80K, if I remember correctly.

I agree 100% with you (dinyaar) and others that there is no point moving sideways. Since many of the forum members have experience with many of these amps in various capacity, and my direct knowledge with most of the gears is quite limited, I wanted to know which ones in my list would actually mean sideways movement.

I am happy and thankful that I am getting the advice I sought.

Can anybody comment on the Parasound pre and power (New classic 2100 and 2125, or Halo P3 and A 23) idea? In that case I shall consider a staggered process, that is getting the pre first and then the power after some time. Is that a dumb idea? Is Emotiva available in India? How are they?
 

particleman

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The Arcam FMJ-A28 is a spectacular amp. And as with most Arcam products there is a clear upgrade path. In future you can use it as a preamp and add an Arcam FMJ power amp to improve the sound. You can pair it with an Arcam CD17 CD player for especially good sound.
 

marsilians

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I have 2 parasound amp's - the Halo 51 and the older 855a. I bought them used when I was in the US and absolutely love them. they seem so effortless in getting a huge soundstage and clarity to music and HT that I am very happy with them.

Also, I used to own Emotiva Amps back in the US. I owned both a LPA-7 (older 7 channel amp) and XPA-5. Back then I transfered to Singapore and took it as an execuse to try new brands and hence moved to Para after auditioning various other amp's (close to 10/12 including many high end ones such as Arcam, Bryston, McIntosh and others such as Rotel, Sunfire, Acurus, ...)

I settled on the Para because of their match with my speakers and also the synch with the music I listen to + good VFM. I have tons of notes that I made when auditioning them as well as when I listen to music. Unfortunately the listening experience in India is a bit different than the US due to the room acoustics and the treatments. (we don't use too many carpets, walls are cement and heavy drapes etc.).

re: your upgrade. I might be one of the folks who might vote for moving "sideways" if it helps. This would involve upgradign with a power amp (solid state). The reasoning being that you like the NAD sound and its dynamics. Borrow an amp from a friend or a store and try it out and see if it makes a difference. I am sure you will like the sound better given your speakers, setup and NAD signature.

Last thing - You ask about getting a pre first and then a power amp. From my understanding unless you are using a receiver or an integrated, you will not get any sound with a pre-alone as it only does the A/V processing. You will need an amp to hear the sound.
 
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Asit

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re: your upgrade. I might be one of the folks who might vote for moving "sideways" if it helps. This would involve upgradign with a power amp (solid state). The reasoning being that you like the NAD sound and its dynamics. Borrow an amp from a friend or a store and try it out and see if it makes a difference. I am sure you will like the sound better given your speakers, setup and NAD signature.

Last thing - You ask about getting a pre first and then a power amp. From my understanding unless you are using a receiver or an integrated, you will not get any sound with a pre-alone as it only does the A/V processing. You will need an amp to hear the sound.

Hi marsilians,

I'll respond to the second paragraph above first. Obviously with pre alone, I am NOT expecting to get sound out of my speakers, for the simple reason that pre's do not come with speaker connections, for good reason, he he! I still would have my little Nad which has a main-in and this will act as the power amp, although not very powerful. I meant it only as a stop-gap arrangement until I get the power amp from the same brand as the pre. Only then my Nad would get a leave from my main setup and can be relegated to our bedroom with a pair of Usher 530's or Dali Lektor1 or something (WF diamonds are always there) or can be sold ( I have even another very old HK integrated, still working).

The above is obviously a hypothetical scenario if ultimately I decide to go the pre/power way. This is the same thing that square_wave used. Look at his post above in this thread.

Thanks for sharing your experience with Parasound. I have no doubt they make very good gear. In my case I have to weigh the pluses and minuses of that possibility with all the integrated options that are there and within my budget at a given point of time what will be the closest to my desired sound with the current speakers, leaving also open the possibility of good-pairing with a number of speakers in future.

I would really welcome others' views as well on this issue.

On the issue of the first paragraph from the quote above, I do not think I can agree with you. If you really go thru my earlier posts, you will discover that my desirables amount to having, among other things, a quiet pre-amp which is usually a difficult thing to get in a budget amp. No matter how much I like some of the qualities of the Nad, its pre-amp section is not the quietest. I think this has been acknowledged by everybody. And one of the serious steps to move up (and not side-ways) is to to improve the pre-amp section. Actually the whole point of this thread is to find out whether this moving up (in the sense I described above with a better pre-amp being one of the criteria) is possible within a budget, keeping or bettering all the good attributes of the Nad. I am sure you acknowledge that too, but somehow you think improving the power section will have more direct effect for the interim. That will give more bang, for sure, but I do not want just bang, I want more refinement!

I hope we can respectfully differ in our opinions. However, I sincerely thank you for your concern. And, please keep the comments coming!
 

Asit

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The Arcam FMJ-A28 is a spectacular amp. And as with most Arcam products there is a clear upgrade path. In future you can use it as a preamp and add an Arcam FMJ power amp to improve the sound. You can pair it with an Arcam CD17 CD player for especially good sound.

Well, I am not going to change my CDP in a hurry, even though I know from user reviews around the world that the CD17 and CD37, true to the Arcam tradition, are very very good.

However, you have pointed out a very interesting thing of the upgrade path of the Arcam integrateds. Actually that's how most of the arcam integrated owners upgrade their amps, especially because the pre-amp section is so good. They also can be bi-amped.

This leaves an interesting (relatively cheaper) possibility for me. I can get the FMJ A 18 which is apparently very good (from limited user and customer reviews, expert reviews are not yet available) with similar power as I currently have on the Nad. This in addtion has a phono stage included so that I can think of adding a new TT to replace my Dual CS5000. Then whenever the need arises, I can add a power amp from Arcam to suit new speakers or whatever. This way I can get away with the least expenditure for the moment. However, the A 18 has to be acceptable first, in terms of sound.
 

reignofchaos

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The NAD is a massive bottleneck in your setup. I'd say get something better. Lots of nice options have been suggested but I'd say you can probably do better. If you are upgrading, you might as well upgrade to the best you can afford and most of the mass market brands like marantz won't be something you'd wanna hold on to in the long run as they'd end up becoming a bottleneck very soon.
 

Asit

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The NAD is a massive bottleneck in your setup. I'd say get something better. Lots of nice options have been suggested but I'd say you can probably do better. If you are upgrading, you might as well upgrade to the best you can afford and most of the mass market brands like marantz won't be something you'd wanna hold on to in the long run as they'd end up becoming a bottleneck very soon.

Hi reignofchaos,

Thanks for responding to the thread. If you have something specific in mind, please spell it out. However, please keep in mind the budget constraints. That's what makes this quest frustrating as well as interesting. Even though I have been listening to stereo separates for a long long time, still in a way I have very limited experience in this business because I have not kept in touch with what's available.

I am going to disappoint you by saying that I also own a graphic equalizer of Kenwood GE5020. It will shortly be clear why I am raising this here. For good quality recording I have never used any tone control in the amp, let alone the graphic equalizer. So then why do I have it? It is because I also have lots of music recorded in the early last century and for them only I use it. BTW it is a very high quality graphic equalizer which cost me neraly 600 Deutsche Mark in 1990 and one Herr Schulko of Allopach, Aachen, (still West) Germany basically handpicked it for me.

Music has always come first for me and I have sort of neglected what upgrades I could have etc.

I am saying all this if it helps people understand my needs. Now though I feel I may go for an upgrade of the amp.
 

reignofchaos

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Nothing wrong in an equalizer once in a while :). I use one too albeit a software equalizer whenever I feel the recordings are really bad.

For 75 grand or so, I'd look at preowned equipment rather than new. Some brands have already been suggested. Could you tell me how hard your speaker is to drive? It seems to have a 93dB sensitivity but has a nominal impedance of 4 ohm. Did you try it with any lower power tube/solid state Class A or similar?

The trouble with most solid state muscle amps is that they lack that final bit of life and musicality. There are a few here and there that sound really nice but they are really few in number.
 
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dinyaar

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Hi Asit,
Well going tubed is an option but one which i now am staying far away from. Am sure ROC and many others will guide u to the right tube amps.

Yes Arcam preamps or the pre section in the integrateds is great. Its the power amp that i didnt like. Yes lots of guys use the budget Diva integrateds as a pre and are very satisfied. The dedicated pre is superb but was costing the same as my preamp and i decided to stick to one brand for both the pre/power and hence opted out. Fully featured and very very good IMO.

I urge u to not make any small side ways moves as u end up buying/selling and losing money and getting dejected in the process. Take ur time and decide. U are not without music so u can select wisely.
Not too much info on Parasound gear. Have heard it on occasions at a vendors with Jamo 909 s and legacy but dont have an opinion.

I tried a lot of gear for over two months when i upgraded and luckily always in my home before i decided on an amplifier and later a cdp.

Will keep u posted if i hear of any used gear worth considering.
Rgds
 

Asit

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Hi ROC (uneasy to call you that, I belong to a pre-SMS age)
and Hi dinyaar,

I have not tried any lower power tube and / or class A amp with my speakers.

My speakers are quite easy to drive I guess. I am saying this on the basis of auditions of nad C320bee (very similar to my amp) and the CA 740c with a host of speakers from Quad 11 L (and L2) to Dali Ikon 6 and my speakers give out better (in most cases much better) that last bit of energy that you (ROC) are talking about. Even the speaker cables and interconnects used were the same as home, they were respectively the VDH clearwater and CA azur reference 0.75m (very good interconnect for a price of Rs 2700, upstaged a few like a XLO a few times its price in these setups).

However a class A in the present Kolkata weather (can get up and above 40 deg in summers) may be a no-no.

Tubes require a bit of know-how, chopping and changing and maintenance. Other than doing physics, I am a very lazy person and getting kind of old and temperamental at 50, so they say. I reckon I may not be fit enough to climb the mountain of tubes.

Very busy today at work with some visitors and deadlines. I have something on my mind that I like to share, may be this evening or over the weekend.
 
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Asit

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Kolkata
Hi,

the Quad power amps seem like great value at their price points. The 909 midrange has been compared to the best of the best. However, the rest of my system and my finances do not justify it. I may be happy with the 99 stereo power amp at 90 wpc@8 and 125wpc@4. The 99 also has some great reviews. Can anybody comment on it and at what price they sell in India?

Have no idea about 99 pre-amp, it's also pricier than the 99 stereo power amp. Would an Arcam integrated (as pre) pair well with the Quad 99 stereo power amp?

Regards
 
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