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Help needed for setting a stereo system (music only)

Wharfedale EVO 4.1 4.2 Speakers

sethunr

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Dec 28, 2006
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Hi,

I'm new to the hi-fi world and planning to set a hi-fi stereo system (music only). I listen almost all types of music like soft pop, blues, country, Carnatic, Ghazals etc. After doing my own research I found that Cambridge Audio Azur 740C would be the CDP I have to choose. I have not auditioned this one but 640A v2 together with 740A. I didn't like much of the attributes of the 740A and planning to audition other amps like NAD C352, Rotel RA-1062, RA-1072 etc.
Could you please advice ,me which amp will be a macth for CA 740C (other than 740A) and matching floor standers?
My budget would be like as below:
CDP - 45000
integrated Amp - 40000
FS Speakers - 70000

Thanks
Sethukumar
 

unleash_me

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... I listen almost all types of music like soft pop, blues, country, Carnatic, Ghazals etc...
Thanks
Sethukumar

Sethu,

For your genre of music, you need a warm sounding setup. Not a bad choice of CD player, but if you can push it, consider Marantz SA7001 KI Signature.

For Amp, you can check out-
a) Marantz PM7001 KI Signature
b) Rokshan Kandy L.III
c) Cyrus 8 vs2

For floor standers, do check out-
a) Dali Ikon 6
b) Monitor Audio RS6
c) B&W CM7

Best Regards.
 

dinyaar

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Hi,

I'm new to the hi-fi world and planning to set a hi-fi stereo system (music only). I listen almost all types of music like soft pop, blues, country, Carnatic, Ghazals etc. After doing my own research I found that Cambridge Audio Azur 740C would be the CDP I have to choose. I have not auditioned this one but 640A v2 together with 740A. I didn't like much of the attributes of the 740A and planning to audition other amps like NAD C352, Rotel RA-1062, RA-1072 etc.
Could you please advice ,me which amp will be a macth for CA 740C (other than 740A) and matching floor standers?
My budget would be like as below:
CDP - 45000
integrated Amp - 40000
FS Speakers - 70000

Thanks
Sethukumar

Hi ,
I dont have much experience with the cdp u mention but the Rotel RA 1062 is a great amp and so is the RA 1070. I would rate them much higher than the Nad c 352.(Have owned all the three). If u go with rotel amps then the rotel RCD 1072 is a good cdp. It obviously matches in every way. The speakers that match the above set up would be the B&W Cm 7 or even the newly launched 683 if u must have floor standers.
Having said that i personally feel all the above products are way overpriced but i guess that holds true for most electronics here in india. Also i totally back unleash' s suggestion of a Marantz sa 7001 or 7001KI as the cdp. The grey market price of both these is a steal. The matching marantz amp is pretty revealing too. U should hear all the above products as all have a distinct sonic signature. It all boils down to the sound u really are after. One small advice is to not blindly just buy a floorstander but consider the stand mount option unless u have a huge room to house the set up in.
Regards.
 

sethunr

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Thanks to unleash_me and dinyaar for their prompt reply. The reason for choosing CA 740C as the preferred CDP is that it got very good reviews. Separate Wolfson audio DACs for each channel and 24bit/384Hz oversampling etc make it a good CDP. I'm not sure whether Burr Brown DAC or Wolfson DAC produce better sound though.
I have already auditioned Marantz 7001 and 6001 already(I guess the numbers are correct!)but I didn't like the stereo imaging they produced. The speaker used was MS 906i and 908i.
Could you peole able to tell me where I can find Roksan Kandy stuff in Bangalore please? It has won numerous rewards as best integrated recently.

Thanks
Sethukumar




Hi ,
I dont have much experience with the cdp u mention but the Rotel RA 1062 is a great amp and so is the RA 1070. I would rate them much higher than the Nad c 352.(Have owned all the three). If u go with rotel amps then the rotel RCD 1072 is a good cdp. It obviously matches in every way. The speakers that match the above set up would be the B&W Cm 7 or even the newly launched 683 if u must have floor standers.
Having said that i personally feel all the above products are way overpriced but i guess that holds true for most electronics here in india. Also i totally back unleash' s suggestion of a Marantz sa 7001 or 7001KI as the cdp. The grey market price of both these is a steal. The matching marantz amp is pretty revealing too. U should hear all the above products as all have a distinct sonic signature. It all boils down to the sound u really are after. One small advice is to not blindly just buy a floorstander but consider the stand mount option unless u have a huge room to house the set up in.
Regards.
 

unleash_me

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...I have already auditioned Marantz 7001 and 6001 already(I guess the numbers are correct!)but I didn't like the stereo imaging they produced. The speaker used was MS 906i and 908i.

Ah...I believe the otherwise extreamely capable amp is let down by the speaker counterparts.

Kandy is a really good amp but it tends to sound brighter. If that doesn't matter to you, then its a really good buy.
 

dinyaar

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Hi,
For Roksan products contact Mr Marbin Colah on 91 9819257839. He is the distributor of the brand and will happily ship anywhere in india. Dont think he has a dealer in bangalore. Having said that i have heard the kandy amp(earlier model not the current upgrade) with various speakers and i wonder what all the fuss is about. But thats my opinion. Am sure u can do better with 65/70 K than the Roksan.
Regards
 

spycatcher

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Nov 4, 2007
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Hi All,

Cost of stuff in India is almost always at an unbelieable 100% premium (apprx) - I waited for almost 6 months of research and finally picked up the below system from Singapore....

CDP: Marantz CD 6002
AMP: Marantz PM 7001 KI
SPK: MA BR5 (I got these from Chennai)

Just hooked the above last Sunday - too early to comment as the above requires a burn in of atleast 50-70 hours - however the difference in sound - tight base - clarity is defintely there....

Let me know incase anyone needs further details.

Cheers
 

particleman

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May 11, 2007
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Hi spycatcher,

If you don't mind my asking you I would only like to know if you faced any hassles with customs and airport officials here in India (assuming you have brought them back to India). What was the experience of bringing the equipment into the country like?

Thanks for sharing.
 

spycatcher

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Hi Particleman,

Well, honestly Customs was the biggest issue on my mind. These guys have got very strict now. I was flagged down too however, I kind of got out of it by just talking to them and getting away without paying anything... I guess I was just plain lucky.
Luckily I had a colleague with me who was carrying the CDP in a big cheap looking bag and he breezed past the green channel ! I guess its a matter of chance and luck :)
 

dinyaar

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Hi,
Guys i agree its a matter of luck. Mis declaration or non declaration is a jailable offence. U are anyway allowed a certain amount of goods sans duty so if u have just a CDP its anyway ok. If travelling with a companion or as a family u can get some more too. ]
I have brought down over the years amps, cdp s and a tuner just last year and i would carry it boxed rather than in a hand bag etc. Each time i have been asked of the content and the value but have never been charged. A friend of mine got a lovely high end stereo set up from dubai and greased the officials 8K and got all the components through. So i guess its not that bad. I think they are ok with it if they feel its for personal use.
Regards.

** Am referring to the bombay customs. Have no knowledge of other indian cities.
 
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spycatcher

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Hi Dinyar - in your case what value you declared - the cost of the product in India or the cost you bought it abroad?

In my experience a lot of times one can talk your way through or just negotiate a %'age value and pay the duty. For popular items like DVDs, Cameras, LCDs, etc these guys generally have a printed rate-list which they refer to to ascertain a value.... and then it does become difficult.

However, In the case of hi fi equipment most products might not be there on the list and in such cases they just try to push a very hi cost to you.... i guess in such cases one should just stay your ground and negotiate a reasonable duty.
 
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dinyaar

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Hi,
On asked of the value i told him the price i paid in Uk truthfully. I didnt want to chance telling him a lower price as i was afraid of them knowing but he kind of seemed dis interested. He asked me things like what is DAB, will it work here etc but didnt bother me further. With my Roksan amp a few years ago my expereince was similar. I dont think he knew of the product but he asked me if i had any more electronics apart from the amp to which i replied in the negative. So he asked to put the bags once again on the scanner but finally let me pass. Mind u i told him the amp cost me 650 GBP which was true.
Regards.
 

rajstar

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Feb 1, 2008
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Hi,
If you are in bangalore or south india,Please call Vinod Thimothy on 98455 14021 he is the authorised dealer for B&W,Martin logan ,Rotel,Nuforce,starc audio tube amplifiers(yours truly),etc.May be he can help out,call and fix a time for demo,otherwise call audio vision india,mumbai.rajesh nair
 
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sethunr

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Hi,
Last weekend I have auditioned NAD 325BEE with MA RS8 and BR5. Also I had a chance to listen to Rotel RA-06 with RCD-1072 in B&W CM 1 Bookshelves. To my ears the NAD 325BEE sounded much better than the Rotel stuff. The Rotel RA-06 and RA-1062 amps costs somewhere around Rs.58000/-
and the RCD-1072 also costs the same roughly. Considering the value of money factor I would prefer to go with the NAD. I was looking for NAD C352 integrated and it seems they discontinued this amp and introducing a newer one named C355 with lots of refinements. Waiting for its arrival in another 1 month or so and then finalise on which NAD amp.
The Rotel sounded good with onbe of the CDs we had but for other kind of music that I listen to, it didn't have that appeal as far as I'm concerend. The NAD sounded much pleasing for almost all kind of music that I listen to (in MA RS8 and this is a pricey stuff around Rs.87000/-)
Plese give your suggestions.

Thanks in advance
Sethukumar
 

dinyaar

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Hi,
Last weekend I have auditioned NAD 325BEE with MA RS8 and BR5. Also I had a chance to listen to Rotel RA-06 with RCD-1072 in B&W CM 1 Bookshelves. To my ears the NAD 325BEE sounded much better than the Rotel stuff. The Rotel RA-06 and RA-1062 amps costs somewhere around Rs.58000/-
and the RCD-1072 also costs the same roughly. Considering the value of money factor I would prefer to go with the NAD. I was looking for NAD C352 integrated and it seems they discontinued this amp and introducing a newer one named C355 with lots of refinements. Waiting for its arrival in another 1 month or so and then finalise on which NAD amp.
The Rotel sounded good with onbe of the CDs we had but for other kind of music that I listen to, it didn't have that appeal as far as I'm concerend. The NAD sounded much pleasing for almost all kind of music that I listen to (in MA RS8 and this is a pricey stuff around Rs.87000/-)
Plese give your suggestions.

Thanks in advance
Sethukumar

Hi,
I agree that the rotel/B&W combo is more expensive than the NAD/MA combo but i personally prefer the former in sound and build quality.the nad C 325 BEE is at best a decent amp and does not get any positive reviews. I truly feel that the current lot of nad amps are very ordinary. Am sure the marantz would be more musical and better built. The nads are ok with undemanding speakers but really struggle otherwise. I had the 352 amp and with the 601(small bookshelf) it seemed ok and sweet but on the 603(floorstander) it really struggled at moderate to loud volumes. I felt the entire tonality changed all all i heard was midrange and fat bass. I suggest u buy the speakers u like best and then match the electronics to them. Thats what i have always done and i am happy with the end result.
Am sure others will have different opinions and its best to hear all the suggestions and audition as many combo s and then decide the one for u.
Regards
 

sethunr

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Hi dinyaar,
Whatever you are saying may be true, but when i audition I have to rely on my ears only right. It might be true that Rotel may be a better product that NAD. But when spending nearly 58000 for an amp, I have to look for a matching CDP and FS speakers to squeeze the maximum potential out of the combination.This will definitly cross Rs200000.00 for me and I do not have a budget anything more than 1.5lacs.This is the maximum I can spend. Or I have to look at the combination like Rotel Ra-05 (40W/ch) which is apprx. Rs40000.00. For speakers I would like to have the MA RS 8.
What do you say about this combination?

Thanks
Sethukumar
 

dinyaar

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Hi setu,
I fully agree thats its totally up to ur ears to decide. The prices u mention for the rotel gear frankly shock me. Way over priced. I have a rotel set up too with b&W and obviously prices have shot up. I am just giving u my opinion. I find too many people just end up buying stuff just on reviews, sales talk, specifications and not what they really require and the dealers here often mis guide.
I have not been a Monitor audio admirer for a while now so cannot really comment on the models u mention. I feel u will surely get a very decent hi fi set up in 1.5 L which u say is ur budget.
The RA 05 (i bought for 25K last yr) is a very decent amp. Though its rated at only 40 watts i find its drives better and louder and cleaner than the nad c 352 which is 80 watts. Both were tested with B&W 603, 601, and my neighbours KEF iQ 7. The RA 1062 has better components inside and was slightly more expensive. Irrespective of what magazines say i feel these two amps are great bang for the buck. I have been dissapointed with nad gear of late but am sure others will have different opinions.

regards
 

dinyaar

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Hi,

Just adding some more. The MA RS 8 will require a more powerful amp than any of the above to my mind. Also why would u want to buy the rotel RCD 1072 @ 58 K!!!!(good cd spinner but not at that price) buy the marantz CD 6002 at 20 K. Very decent cdp or go for the SA 7001 @ 35K. A 50 watt amp will drive most speakers but thats not to say it can get the best from the speaker or control the speaker. If u like the above speaker and like the NAD sound go for the C 372 @ 55 K or if u can stretch it the pre power combo C162/272 from the same brand. Not the last word but is pretty capable. At least ur amps will not clip at higher volumes. So say a Marantz cd 6002/ nad C372/ ma RS 8 should be a good combo and i think in ur budget.I know the C 372 gets bad reviews while the C 352 was the product of the year when actually both share the same pre amp section and are very similar in every way apart from the power ratings.
Regards
 
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sethunr

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Thanks dinyaar!

When i auditioned the rotel ra-06 with B&W CM1 BS, many of the CDs that i heard better in NAD 325BEE sounded very plain to me. I was not getting much musicality as I felt it good with the NAD 325BEE. While I was auditioning the NAD stuff with MA RS8, we kept the volume at very low levels to mid level. It was performing much decently with no coloration and all. But when the volume is brought to higher levels, it was giving more noise than music.
I do not want purchase Rotel RCD -1072 for that price anyway! I can get better or comparable ones with lesser price.
Instead of MA RS8 which may need more power I can look at other FS that can go with less power.

I generally listen to music at low levelor at mid levels ony and I don't party with my system.
Compared to Marantz CD players (SA 7001 Ki), CA 740C is winning more reviews. It claims to have Wolfson DACs on both the channels and upsampling to 24bit/384kHz. So it should be a very good source.

on this on more power)since I'm intending to build my system for my bed room. So a 50W/Ch should be decent enough for me. I was thinking of the NAD C352, but now they discontinued this and coming upwith C355 and waiting for that. It is rated at 80W/Ch and on MA speakers it sould be more than 100W/Ch since the impedence of these speakers are at 6ohms.

I do have a home theater which I want to upgrade with FS for front channels and decent BS like MA BR2 for rear channels, a decent center channel and a 250W powered sub woofer.This is not immedialty but after setting up my dedicated stereo.

After giving all these details do you have something to suggest for me?

Regards
Sethukumar
 

sethunr

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Hi dinyaar,

Could you mention about your stereo set up and the kind of music that you usually listen to? This may help me a lot as where to look at and change in my perspecive needed.

Regards
Sethukumar
 
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