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Author Topic: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)  (Read 3510 times)

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Offline JasonSobel

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need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« on: August 28, 2005, 12:18:45 PM »
hey folks - over the next few months, I think I'm going to start to build a playback system, one that is reasonably good, and one that will go beyond headphone listening (which I've pretty much focused on to date)

I am planning to incorporate my grace model 901 as my system DAC and pre-amp, so the front-end of my system is taken care of...  I'm pretty sure it will serve me very well for this purpose. 

I want to buy speakers and am amp.  I've been eyeing the Von Schweikert VR-1 speakers.  these have gotten great reviews, and I think will be a good starting point for speakers.  (also, Nick's VR-4's left a great impression on me, hence my leaning towards other Von Schweikert products)  but that won't leave too much money left over for an amp.  ideally, a sweet tube amp would fit the bill nicely, but for an amp, I'm probably looking at less than $500 to start with.  at this point, I'm open to SS or tubes, although to be honest, I'm a little intimidated by tube amps at the moment, what with biasing and the greater care and knowledge required.  not saying that I'm not willing to learn or put in the time to gain a better understanding, but at this point, I know very little about tubes...

after looking around on audiogon for a few days, I was thinking about the B&K ST-140.  has anyone here had experience with this one.  or does anyone here have any suggestions.  either on speakers or amps?  just beginning to feel things out, here, and probably won't buy anything for another month or two...
« Last Edit: August 28, 2005, 12:22:27 PM by JasonSobel »

Offline Lil Kim Jong-Il

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2005, 12:57:53 PM »
don't be scared of tubes.   You don't really have to know much about them and most of the modern tube amps have bias tools built in to the amp so there is no need for a voltmeter.   If what you like about tubes is the warm sounding midrange, you can occasionally find a conrad johnson MV50 in the 500-600 price range.  It uses EL34 which are easy to find and not expensive.  I wish I still had that amp. There are also some Jolida amps that are in that range.   There is a HK Citation 5 on agon right now that is a nice amp but it's older.  So there are a few options in your price range.

I have not had an ST-140 so I can't comment other than to say that they get good reviews and are reliable.

Which speakers are you getting?
The first rule of amateur neurosurgery club is .... I forget.

Offline JasonSobel

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2005, 01:01:01 PM »
Which speakers are you getting?

probably the Von Schweikert VR-1's.  not sure yet though.

Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2005, 01:05:29 PM »
you know...a used McCormack DNA amp wouldn't suck.
Stereophile class B rated, but they said "so close to class A...its a hard call".
they are awesome, and very muscular.  would be an amp you could keep for a while ...even beyond VR1s.
Though, i'd try to get some tubes for that.  They are noted for a smooth mid range, and if you had a nice tube amp behind them I bet it would match up super fine.

maybe something from Rogue audio? 
start looking on agon just for tube amps and see what comes up in your price range.

I know i've mentioned it, and i know you want to keep your Grace as a passive preamp..but a Manley Stingray would be my first choice.  Yes, its an integrated..but its preamp section is top notch, and you'd still have the Grace sound pumping through it.
out of your price range..but a thought.  they show up used for $1300ish from time to time

Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2005, 01:07:35 PM »
http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?ampstube&1128714196

offer him $675 shipped..and you'd be psyched!!!!

Offline JasonSobel

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2005, 01:29:28 PM »
I knew I could count on you guys to give me the needed push back towards tubes  :D

I don't think I'm quite ready to make an offer on anything just yet.  still need a little more time reading, learning, and saving.  but I greatly appreciate all the input, suggestions, and enthusiasm.

and I probably would be psyched with that Rogue.  but I'm really forcing myself to go slow and make an informed decision...

Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2005, 09:00:51 AM »
more stuff:
http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?ampstran&1131242018  DNA .5  $750 obo

http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?ampstube&1131110856  fisher monoblocks...cool

http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?ampstran&1131222562  McIntosh!!  $500

several st-140's up there as well.
while a nice amp, i might hold out for a beefier B&K of the same era.  like the st-202 or others in that power range.
the price is right for those!  all under $300.  great sounding...but perhaps not the final word in detail.  a nice warm sound though.
« Last Edit: September 07, 2005, 09:16:29 AM by Nick's Picks »

Offline JasonSobel

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2005, 09:13:43 AM »
thanks for keeping an eye out for me, Nick.

as far as an amp goes, I picked up a B&K ST-120.  someone was selling it locally and had posted it on Craig's List for $100.  so I jumped on it.  that will take care of my amp needs for now.  So I'll get a pair of speakers, and then see how much money is left and how much is left to be desired with the sound I get out of the B&K amp.

So, my primary concern right now is speakers.  I was bidding on a pair of VR-1's that ended yesterday, but didn't get them.  I was willing to go to $625, didn't want to go higher, because, if I pay more than that, I might as well get a new pair through your connection :)  There's also a pair of Vandersteen 2ci speakers, for $425.  seems like a great deal, but I'm wavering between jumping on them and waiting to see what else pops up in the next month or two.


Offline Tim

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2005, 12:01:12 PM »
don't be scared of tubes. You don't really have to know much about them and most of the modern tube amps have bias tools built in to the amp so there is no need for a voltmeter. If what you like about tubes is the warm sounding midrange, you can occasionally find a conrad johnson MV50 in the 500-600 price range. It uses EL34 which are easy to find and not expensive. I wish I still had that amp. There are also some Jolida amps that are in that range.

listen to this guy :)


edit: I see you got an amp... congrats!
I’ve had a few weird experiences and a few close brushes with total weirdness of one sort or another, but nothing that’s really freaked me out or made me feel too awful about it. - Jerry Garcia

Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: need an amp (B&K ST-140 ??)
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2005, 01:28:06 PM »
cool Jason!!
you go...guy

 

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