Gigapod's Linux and digital audio pages
A simple website with odd bits of information about digital audio using Linux, setting up Debian Linux on the Toshiba Portégé 3480CT, and restoring vintage audio amplifiers and receivers.
Last modified: Sun Jan 14 11:03:10 2007
I belong to the objectivist camp here: to me, all good amplifiers should sound alike when used with the same speakers within their power ratings (i.e. below clipping). It seems this opinion is supported by the fact that ABX tests of audio amplifiers have failed to reveal any significant differences.
I have listened to the amplifiers listed below and my subjective listening failed to uncover any significant differences in sound quality.
On the other hand, different speakers from different manufacturers or with different sizes do sound different. Perhaps they shouldn't, but speakers are imperfect electro-mechanical devices and there is an incredible variety in designs, sizes, build quality and of course price. And the sound they produce is affected by speaker placement, room size and configuration, listener position, etc. And finally our hearing differs from individual to individual.
So even if the amplifiers below did sound slightly different, it wouldn't matter to me so much.
From around 1975 until 1980, the company founded by Saul Marantz and bearing his name created a series of receivers that became classics in terms of audio equipment. These "Classic Marantz" receivers can still be found today in garage sales, on eBay or simply in the basement, rarely in mint condition.
I recently bought a 2238BL receiver (2 x 38W) in a very sorry state, and have spent some time restoring it.