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Your thoughts please

Discussion in 'audio' started by ledzep68, Aug 21, 2014.

  1. ledzep68

    ledzep68 pfm Member

    I've been offered an Audio Innovations s500 integrated the one with 3 taps on the back and a Rega brio R i cant get to listen to either but both have good reviews,so any help with thoughts or as to what to what they sound is like or even which one should i go for would be most helpful. Thank you
  2. chris@panteg

    chris@panteg pfm Member

    If you've got a pair of Snells, then go for the S500.
  3. oldius

    oldius Can pleasure be measured?

    I am not normally a valve fan but, having heard the AI with Snells I would absolutely recommend that choice.
  4. pcutter1

    pcutter1 pfm Member

    What source(s) and speakers? The AA 500 uses EL34s to give 25w so you shouldn't have too many problems regarding sensitivity matching, not like a single ended with 8 or 9 watts and needing a sensitivity of 90db watt. It should by now have all the wrinkles ironed out and will be pretty much future proof, even valve amps from the 1950's and 60's can still be repaired and kept in service. You will also be able to make simple mods by rolling the tubes and trying different types and brands. But no remote control. It is also the most likely to retain its value over the years. It has been obsolete for many years but is now supported by a great many dedicated specialists.

    The Rega has had good reviews, but has been the subject of a number of threads on PFM, so perhaps a little research would be advisable. I have read several critiques of the basic design philosophy as well as the execution. Overall it seems to have been designed to offer the sort of overall sound that valve amps have. It is, of course, twice as powerful as the AA, has a completely different style and has remote control.

    Confession time: I haven't heard either. I did own one of the original pairs of AA 2A3 1st Audio monoblocks, on the original chassis. Had they been on the 500 style chassis I doubt very much whether I would have sold them as I consider the new look to be a design classic, all your visitors will comment on it if it's the one you choose. Nor is the EL34 my favourite valve, but I still prefer its sound to that of most transistors.

    A lot depends on the prices involved, at a good enough price the AA will always offer good resale prospects, the Rega on the other hand is (I believe) the second iteration of the model, and would become obsolete if a newer version were introduced, although as a long term Rega arm fan I can't say I've noticed the value of the 300 plummeting since the 303 was introduced.

    If listening in advance of purchase is absolutely impossible, and were I in the same position I would try the AA first, as it is more likely that you will have another opportunity to get a Brio.
  5. ledzep68

    ledzep68 pfm Member

    Thank you people especially (pcutter1) i have gone for the Audio Innovations and I've ordered some better valves.
  6. musicman7988

    musicman7988 pfm Member

    Wise choice, the AA is a cracking little valve amp with good support available if you encounter any problems..

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