file Anybody using PS Audio M1200 monoblocks?

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charliehatch Posted 1 month 2 weeks ago
#29860
Yes, I'm starting to learn that lesson. I plan to always have a set on hand just in case.

One thing I read was to make sure the Herbies are making a gentle touch. They were rather tight when I tried to install them the first time, so I opened mine up a bit. Does it make a difference? I don't know...but at least it makes me fell like I'm doing something. :)
PS Audio P20 feeds all components of 2.0 System: Auralic Aries G2> USB > DSPeaker Anti-Mode X4 DAC/Pre > Core Power Diamond XLR interconnects > PS Audio M1200 monoblocks > Core Power Diamond banana speaker cables > Triton References on IsoAcoustics Gaia II isolators
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rjohn79395 Posted 1 month 2 weeks ago
Last edit: 1 month 2 weeks ago by rjohn79395. info_outline
#29862
Oh, man!

Charlie, your input on the M1200's is SO tempting!!! Yeah they were already on my list of possible upgrades even before you got them, but the way you describe what they do for your T Ref's is a confirmation of what I was speculating. Another decision about set up in a limited rack space!!! Yes, I am convinced the M1200's can deliver great control and sound to the T Ref's! The tube life and change over time thing still lurks in my mind.

So another decision when I get back to TX after the summer.....

Yes, Anthem, I get your message about keeping spare tubes on hand and tube rolling . Ha! Do I dare enter the tube realm? Probably so.

Rick
5.4.4 HT speakers: T Ref fronts/LFE 1, SuperCenter Ref, T1 surrounds/LFE 2, HTR 7000 top fronts, Invisa 525 top rears
Zone 2 speakers; 2 Invisa 525's
AVR: Marantz SR 7010
Amps: AT525NC 5 channel, Parasound 275 v.2 stereo
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48" SONY 4K OLED TV
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rjohn79395 Posted 1 month 2 weeks ago
#29864
Hey Charlie

I read the M1200 review you posted, I hadn't seen that one. He said it wasn't a giant killer, it was the giant. Wow. He also addressed the one negative comment I'd seen on other reviews, that their iron fisted control of speakers sometimes truncated note decay, but that he had fixed that with Herbie's Tube Dampers and some tube rolling. Wow again.

The reviewer mentioned two albums that the M1200's just killed, Leonard Cohen"s Thanks For the Dance, and Andreas Vollenwider's Quiet Places. I found both on Qobuz, and have sampled them. They sound great on my Ananda headphones, which are the only good listening options while here in NH. I'll bet the M1200, T Ref combination would be dynamite.

Dang, I'm starting to drool just a bit about those M1200's....

Rick
5.4.4 HT speakers: T Ref fronts/LFE 1, SuperCenter Ref, T1 surrounds/LFE 2, HTR 7000 top fronts, Invisa 525 top rears
Zone 2 speakers; 2 Invisa 525's
AVR: Marantz SR 7010
Amps: AT525NC 5 channel, Parasound 275 v.2 stereo
Cable/TiVo, OPPO BDP 105D, Bluesound Node 2i
48" SONY 4K OLED TV
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charliehatch Posted 1 month 2 weeks ago
#29866
Rick,

I remember that comment about note decay, and that puzzled me. Notes decay at whatever rate they decay on the recording. The only thing I could think of that might cause that subjective impression is the decay disappearing into a relatively high noise floor. John Atkinson's measurement did show a SNR of 66dB for the M1200, so maybe that's what the reviewer was hearing?

Quote from the Stereophile review:

"The unweighted, wideband signal/noise ratio (ref. 1W into 8 ohms and measured with the unbalanced input shorted to ground) was okay, measuring 66.3dB. This ratio improved to 78.6dB when the measurement was restricted to the audioband and 82.7dB when A-weighted."

Yet his measurement of the 1W spectrum with a 1 kHz tone shows a very clean noise floor from –110 to nearly –120 dB. That's a loooong way down there. A later test with a 50 Hz tone at 50W did show higher harmonic components. So maybe running at higher powers into lower efficiency speakers might reveal this noise floor.

In my listening (using balanced inputs) with my very efficient TRefs I haven't noticed any kind of noise or truncated decay problem. In fact, many times I can hear the recording noise floor stop at the end of the recordings! So I can say it isn't a problem for me.

Charlie
PS Audio P20 feeds all components of 2.0 System: Auralic Aries G2> USB > DSPeaker Anti-Mode X4 DAC/Pre > Core Power Diamond XLR interconnects > PS Audio M1200 monoblocks > Core Power Diamond banana speaker cables > Triton References on IsoAcoustics Gaia II isolators
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Steveo Posted 1 month 1 week ago
#29875
I have some trefs running off bel canto ref600ms. What your final verdict on the difference and jump in audio quality coming from the bel canto? Feel free to be as detailed as possible
Triton Ref Pair, Supercenter Ref, SS 3's surr
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Bel Canto REF600m L & R, Emotiva Xpa 5 Gen 2 for Center and rears
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charliehatch Posted 1 month 1 week ago
#29877
Hi Steveo,

Funny you should use the word "detailed", because that's one of the noticable improvements!

The story so far. The amps are continuing to break in. I now have around 90 or 100 hours on them, PS Audio talks about 200 to fully break in!

1. The first thing I noticed was a big difference in bass slam. Anything having to do with percussion is better, clearer, sharper, more dynamic. Drum thwacks of all kinds, wood blocks, you name it, it's just more there.

2. There's an improvement in resolution up the entire audio spectrum. I can more easily separate and identify individual instruments in complex orchestral music. It's almost like having a faster amp, yet these have roughly the same frequency response (and damping factor) as the Bel Cantos. But there's something about that power that enables the amp to keep the drivers better aligned with the music. (My theory at the moment.)

3. A sense of smoothness. This is most noticeable for me with cellos and strings. Cellos are full bodied, with less (actually no perceivable) harshness in string overtones. Same thing with brass. Is this the input stage tube? Or the power? I don't know.

4. Soundstage depth is greatly improved. I think this has to do with the higher resolution revealing more details of the ambient sound field. I'm not sure about imaging precision; I think these amps are similar to the Bel Cantos in that regard, maybe a bit less precise than the Bel Cantos.


I have switched out the PS Vane tubes that came with and put in a set of Gold Lions. The jury is still out on that change. I'm not a tube guy, so I'm learning at this point.

I'm currently chasing an odd high frequency, narrow band peakiness at the moment. When new, this was more obvious than now, and it seems to be fading with break in (or I'm adapting, quite possible). Changing tubes didn't affect it. That said, I've heard similar edginess before with the Bel Cantos, so I'm leaning towards the issue being with something upstream, perhaps my DSPeaker DAC. For sure, the M1200s are so revealing that you'll probably hear any problems with your upstream components.

Bottom line: lush, revealing, detailed, dynamic. An improved sense of presence. I love to listen with them. Non fatiguing.

Charlie
PS Audio P20 feeds all components of 2.0 System: Auralic Aries G2> USB > DSPeaker Anti-Mode X4 DAC/Pre > Core Power Diamond XLR interconnects > PS Audio M1200 monoblocks > Core Power Diamond banana speaker cables > Triton References on IsoAcoustics Gaia II isolators
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