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  1. #1

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    Lightbulb pro audio power amp as hi-fi amp? (sounds good to me)

    hello all, have any of you ever listend to your hi-fi speakers or main speakers throung a professional audio (live sound) amp. i have a crown xs500 and i decided one day to try it through my wharfedale daimond 8.3s , blew me away sounds better than arcam alpha3, of course sounds better than my cambridge audio 540r v2 (avr) sounds better than yamaha ax 396 , the deatail it reveals is amazing, the sound is verry tight but verry well reinforced. all across the spectrum, the amp makes each part of the sound stand out.whilst remaining fairly warm sounding. just wonderd if anyone else had listend to any pro amps in a hi fi environment? what were your oppinions.

    one or two annoying things.
    the xs500 has a constant speed fan,(got round this by putting amp in other room sometimes i cant so i just turn it up or try to ignore it)

    only one pair of inpus and one set of outputs.(as most power amps do)

    volume control notches are too big, (use cambridge audio 540d to control volume after setting the amp ones at about 9 o'clock)
    Last edited by ward91; 01-04-2008 at 08:24 AM.
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  2. #2

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    It's never been my cup of tea however YMMV.

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  3. #3

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    I use pro sound amps frequently for stage performance's, I find them excellent for stage work but not so hot for hi-fi, mostly due to their noise and the sound being a bit too edgy.

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    I ran 2 Soundcraftsmen PM840's bridged in my system for nearly 14 years. It was a necessity at the time as I had Bose 901 VI's that liked alot of power, and I had a large livingroom. Though not the last word on articulation, and bass a little over-done, they had alot of warm character in a positive way for me. As an example; I never knew what "digital glare" was until I went to so-called higher-end products---ironic huh?

    If you like the sound of it, use it.

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  5. #5

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    just bein listening to it again, grabed arcam alpha 3 to compare to(old but in prestene condition), the arcam has a more natural?/easy/less obtrousive sound compared to the crown but after about 5 or 10 mins u get used to the up front "monitoring" sound of the crown. the bass on the arcam is a little wayward compared to the crown that has deep but verry controled bass. both have nice sonics and mids on the arcam are more laid back but not as precise as the crown.the sounds are totaly different.i think i like the sound of the crown because every detail somehow seems to be immediatley obvious without being obtrusive to the sound. for the first few minutes of listeninig it doesnt quite "sit right" (too harsh/bright)compared to my other amps sounding harsh but i soon get used to it. in my limeted oppinion sound wise its a what you give in is what you get out rarther than a hi-fi sound designed to sound pleasurable.
    i find it easier to "get into the sound/lay back and enjoy" with the crown at higher volumes than my other amps proberly because of its power and timing.
    Last edited by ward91; 01-04-2008 at 10:04 AM.
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  6. #6

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    I ran a Crown XTi1000 through a pair of RT55

    I wanted to commit suicide right there on the spot.

    Horrible sound.
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  7. #7

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    ward, I was going to say the pro amps tend to be very bright in comparison to hifi amps and at home can become hard to listen to. Maybe it's due to the application and they are designed to be that way as bright works well in bars and stages to overcome the background noise that can tame a lot of the highs.

    For me the only pro amp I tried didn't work at all. Samson S1000 2*500W to RTi150's, sounded horrible. The HK AVR I compared it to sounded a lot better and I know the 150's like a decent amount of power too. I only wonder what it would sound like compared to some of the hifi amps I have now.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sami View Post
    ward, I was going to say the pro amps tend to be very bright in comparison to hifi amps and at home can become hard to listen to. Maybe it's due to the application and they are designed to be that way as bright works well in bars and stages to overcome the background noise that can tame a lot of the highs.

    For me the only pro amp I tried didn't work at all. Samson S1000 2*500W to RTi150's, sounded horrible. The HK AVR I compared it to sounded a lot better and I know the 150's like a decent amount of power too. I only wonder what it would sound like compared to some of the hifi amps I have now.
    true that a bright sound helps but this is not the job of the amp, the mixer controls the sound 100% and the amp is designd to apply gain to the signal but keep it true to the input. why didnt you like the sound of the samsons? i havent listend to them myself but theyre studio amps arnt they?
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  9. #9

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    Harsh sound I think describes it the best. It was my subwoofer amp that I just tried for the heck of it, didn't work for me.

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    looks like ive been outvoted on this one, still it sounds good to me, would be interested to know why Vr3MxStyler2k3 almoast killed himself.
    still open for more feedback/Criticism
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  11. #11

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    There are people who like Crown amps (forgot which specific model was talked about) so you are not alone. The Samson did not work for me, maybe some of the Crown's would but I'm not really in the need to find out as I have all the amps I need now.

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    he has a mixer in his home system???? I do not think so.

    There are many ways to get the signal from the instrument to the pa system. Many musicians run from the instrument to an integrated amplifier with each piece processing the signal in various ways, then out to the PA which also processes the signal, so to say a mixer controls 100% of the sound?????

    off topic but alot of music instruments produce harsh tones, its supposed to be that way.

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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by reeltrouble1 View Post
    he has a mixer in his home system???? I do not think so.

    There are many ways to get the signal from the instrument to the pa system. Many musicians run from the instrument to an integrated amplifier with each piece processing the signal in various ways, then out to the PA which also processes the signal, so to say a mixer controls 100% of the sound?????

    off topic but alot of music instruments produce harsh tones, its supposed to be that way.

    RT1
    ok wel not 100% of 100% but ,can you mute the vocals from your stage amp? can you eq your guitar from the vocal mic on centre stage? can you turn up the kick drum from the bass amp ? so the mixer has o/a control of the sound it "ties it together", maby not 100% correctley speaking but it controls the overall sound going to the amp/speakers regardless of what is going into it

    the mixer controls the signal to the amp and it is rare to have affects between the mixer and the amp unless they are equilisers and then they arnt realy affects.
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  14. #14

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    "off topic but alot of music instruments produce harsh tones, its supposed to be that way."
    a fair enough thing to say in quite alot of cases id agree with you, and a pa is realy a musical instrument isnt it?? as they all sound different. but from what you are saying about pa's being musical instruments its a bit general to say they sound harsh?
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  15. #15

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    Pro amps are real tempting because they're a way to get gobs of power on the cheap. I've tried a couple and they've never really done the trick for me either. Bright and harsh is the best way I can describe. I suppose I could have listened for a while and got acclimated to that sound, but why?
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  16. #16

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    It depends on the application. You have "loud" and then you have "louder than hell" and then you have more intimate settings where you either want a small warm sounding amp for the electric stuff that doesn't overpower the rest.

    I would say that in certain venues, there are some very good systems, and there are very good pro amps out there. The main problem with these is that they are meant to sit far and away from the performance... so yeah, cooling fans, and other stuff that wouldn't be on a home setup.

    Check Audioasylum, I think there are some people there that actually prefer some of the pro amps out there to consumer ones. I would say... that the pro amps meant for studio work would be better than for live, as far as articulation.

  17. #17

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    ward dont sweat it. If you want to use and like the sound of your pro amp go ahead.

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  18. #18

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    ye im easy with what people have to say , not here to start a argument (as you are too)just like to know peoples oppinions, and in most cases seem to be against using them.
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  19. #19

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    I wouldn't use one for these reasons.

    1. The fan
    2. They are fugly
    3. They are not designed for HT equipment.
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  20. #20

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    1. yup the fan is rarther annoying
    2. yup most are verry ugly , i dont recon mine is but il leve that up to you.(follow link)
    http://images.google.co.uk/images?hl...wn+xs500&gbv=2
    3. not quite sure why it matters appart from the fan and visual apperance? if your happy with the sound
    cheers for the input though
    Last edited by ward91; 01-04-2008 at 01:01 PM.
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  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by ward91 View Post
    true that a bright sound helps but this is not the job of the amp, the mixer controls the sound 100% and the amp is designd to apply gain to the signal but keep it true to the input.
    If that were only true. It's not true as there is no such amp, or component for that matter, which keeps everything 100% true from input to output. All things in the chain affect the final sound including cables, source, amp, preamp, connectors, type of wire used, dac's, caps, etc, etc. To say 100% of the sound comes from the mixer is very short sighted. Every part in the chain adds it own character and alters the final output.

    H9
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  22. #22

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    that is true and i 100% agree with you, my reply wasnt all that too clear.

    i was trying to make a point, and i didnt actualy say they dont alter the sound . i said they'r ment to pass is through which in most cases is so.
    "amp is designd to apply gain to the signal but keep it true to the input"
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  23. #23

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    its not like there are no pro amps on the planet that sound good in a home environment. Many pro amps seem to have the problems some sight above. bright, grainy (not issues in public address, but will come out in an enclosed home setting)

    I fully admit there are probably pro amps out there that will transcent those expectations. I've heard good things about some Crown amps, as they seem to be high wuality pro amps. I know soundcraftsman (kind of vintage) had some bad ass amps people used in home environments. allways wanted to try a soundcraftsman.

    I have a JBL Urei amp I got from Russman that sounds pretty damn good for a pro amp. Like the Urei, I'm sure there are some pro amp gems out there.
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  24. #24

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    I've used a pair of Carver PM-300's hooked up to my LSi9's and the sounded good, not nearly as good as my M-500t, but good. No glaring deficiencies, and they don't have fans to make noise. Gain controls are nice to have. I plan to hook 'em up in bridged mode to power the sub on my AL-III's and see how they sound. The best thing about pro amps is they are built to last and take a lot of abuse. I use mine anytime I want portable sound. They seem to run better in bridged mode than many home amps.
    Lots of Carver stuff and a pair of LSi9's

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    I use a Crown XLS 602 amplifier and it sounds great driving my 1.2 TLís. Yes it has cooling fans, but then again, so does the Carver TFM 75 and the McIntosh MC2600.
    http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....ran&1206549845
    No affil.

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    I used a pair of Carver PT1250's or something like that for a few years. They were a hoot when you cranked them up and ok at low levels. The audiophile stuff sounds better but the pro amps had the dynamics down. You haven't heard your speakers true potential until you have heard them powered at close to a thousand watts per channel. :)
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    1000 watts? Wont that blow your speakers?

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    Quote Originally Posted by furball View Post
    1000 watts? Wont that blow your speakers?
    Not normally. Having a 1000 watts is not the same as trying to apply 1000
    watts. The extra power reserves keep the sound nice and dynamic.
    Better to have a 1000 and not need it then have a 100 and clip it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sucks2beme View Post
    Not normally. Having a 1000 watts is not the same as trying to apply 1000
    watts. The extra power reserves keep the sound nice and dynamic.
    Better to have a 1000 and not need it then have a 100 and clip it.
    *clean power* ;)
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    I had many pro amps crown/peavey in my home system. And alway had to turn bass up to sound good. Got my dad's 1.5t carver and it blows away any crown or peavey amp in home set up even thru pa speakers. But set up in a hall the crown/peavey sound better. So if your room is big like a hall/stadium or big bar I'd go pro. My room is 20x20 and the carver home audio rules! Better bass and better soundstage. The mids are great and tweets sound sweet. My living for many of my younger days was setting up sound/ lighting and stage for one of the biggest sound companys in chicago. Ive done sound for some of the biggest bands out there,from Iron maiden/ three dog night /stix/coco tayler/buckinghams/foghat/Jean-Luc Ponty
    and many others.
    Last edited by carversound; 02-06-2008 at 10:24 PM.

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