Please Naim make a Class A amplifier

I am not sure what make you think of Naim need to go for Class A Amplifier. Naim Class AB amp are perform like Class A amp in most of the High-End Brand in market. I used Audio Note Jinro Class A 18W Tube, Accuphase C3800 & A65 (Class A), Gryphon Antileon Signature (Class A). To me the sound quality are on the same par standard, only the Sound Taste were different. Naim has Class A amp warm and bold sound but it add more accurate to the timing (faster than normal Class A amp). So it has almost all from the both Class A & Class AB advantages, and also more economic to the electricity usage.
 
I am using Naim 500 series for almost 5 years, and even I owned other Class A amplifier but I am still prefer the Naim overall performance, which really make no sense to me for Naim to make Class A Amp which they Class AB amp already good enough to smoke the most of the Class A amp in the market.
 
Good Luck.
 

I assume you mean 50W RMS output per channel, so 110W+ per channel heat dissipation, 250W+ electrical consumption and heat output - constantly.

Is the heating in your house insufficient?  Hang on a minute, what about summer time?

Also, you couldn't put a 50W + 50W class A into anything like a standard Naim chassis.  Purely size wise it's possible, but it would look completely different, have much more stringent ventilation requirements and may, quite possibly, need a fan running 24x7!


Seriously, why?
What advantage do you think it has?
What do you think is wrong with Naim's class A/B designs?

Christopher_M posted:

AussieSteve, Why do you ask? What is it that Naim amps aren't giving you?

Hi Chris, class A amps to tend to have quite a distinctive and attractive sound... and somewhat different character from the majority class AB Naim use... one of my favourite class A amps is the Sugden A21, quite sublime and infectious timing with the right (efficient) speaker, but not really suited to my ATCs and rather inefficient.....

AussieSteve posted:
Christopher_M posted:

AussieSteve, Why do you ask? What is it that Naim amps aren't giving you?

I own horn speakers.

OK, and... ?

Is there something odd about their impedance (electrical, yes I'm aware that their acoustic impedance is radically different and frequency dependant)?
What is it that makes them impossible to drive with a 80W Class A/B that will be sorted with a 50W pure Class A?

OK, as has been raised by others some Class A amps have a particular sound signature, but that's far from Naim's amp voicing, and has nothing to do with the type of speaker in use.

I still don't see where you're coming from on this.  If you want a Class A amp, as S-i-S says buy a Sugden A21 (or a Masterclass).  Classic class A style electronics classic class A style of sound, and an exceptional amp; but certainly not a Naim style amp (and like most class A amps, nowhere near 50W per channel - there's a reason for that!).

Huge posted:

I assume you mean 50W RMS output per channel, so 110W+ per channel heat dissipation, 250W+ electrical consumption and heat output - constantly.

Is the heating in your house insufficient?  Hang on a minute, what about summer time?

Also, you couldn't put a 50W + 50W class A into anything like a standard Naim chassis.  Purely size wise it's possible, but it would look completely different, have much more stringent ventilation requirements and may, quite possibly, need a fan running 24x7!


Seriously, why?
What advantage do you think it has?
What do you think is wrong with Naim's class A/B designs?

I have an old Musical Fidelity P270, which claimed to be strongly biased into class A. I can't remember the power available in class A - I know its not the full 150W rated output into 8Ω, maybe only quarter of full output or less. but that does mean most of the time it is in class A, with only the loudest transients not in class A. However, it consumes about 250W continuously (scarcely any change even when playing loud), which is enough to heat the large heatsinks on either side (about 12" long by 7" tall with a 1.5" fins) so they are too hot to touch.

However, I think it is common practice with class A amps to switch them off when not in use, as they only take about half an hour for the temperature to stabilise after turning on.

Horn speakers, with their much greater electroacoustic efficiency, need far less power, so an amp that is in class A for only the first few watts would similarly be in class A most of the time, but would run much cooler.

however, I just get the impression that is somply not Naim's scene - and if it were, the Statement power amp would need water cooling (doubling as central heating boiler, perhaps)?

Simon-in-Suffolk posted:
Christopher_M posted:

AussieSteve, Why do you ask? What is it that Naim amps aren't giving you?

Hi Chris, class A amps to tend to have quite a distinctive and attractive sound... and somewhat different character from the majority class AB Naim use...

I know that. You know that. But does AussieSteve?

While appreciating the purism associated with Class A,  there are common downsides, notably the monumental wastage of electricity and the concomitant amount of heat they generate. They require extensive dissipation/cooling. They also have a tendency to hum as the 'spare' electricity is dumped.

So all in all, not ideal.

However, there might be a case to be made for Class A on the tweeters only. It is also possible to design a Class A/B amp to operate as Class A for signals below a certain thresh-hold, providing some of the benefits without all of the downsides. 

My personal view is that Naim is better off doing further development of their existing A/B amps, as Class A would be a niche market at best.

Solid Air posted:

While appreciating the purism associated with Class A,  there are common downsides, notably the monumental wastage of electricity and the concomitant amount of heat they generate. They require extensive dissipation/cooling. They also have a tendency to hum as the 'spare' electricity is dumped.

So all in all, not ideal.

However, there might be a case to be made for Class A on the tweeters only. It is also possible to design a Class A/B amp to operate as Class A for signals below a certain thresh-hold, providing some of the benefits without all of the downsides. 

My personal view is that Naim is better off doing further development of their existing A/B amps, as Class A would be a niche market at best.

Not sure what basis there is for the statement about humming while dumping electricity? The only humming in a decent product is as with other amp classes, including Naim: the torroidal transformer, particularly if the electricity supply  contains a DC component.

regarfpding electricity usage, if compared with an amp on for the same tine period, then yes, but if a class A amp turned off when not in use (bearing in mind the short warm-up and stabilisation time) is compared to a class B or AB design left on continuously, the dirinction is less obvious (depending on usage).

Class A amps are subject to AC 'ripple' on the DC rails - much more so than A/B - which can emerge as hum. There are ways around that - eg capacitance/regulation - but some of the purity is compromised, and the requirement for heat management increases.

I'm not saying these are insurmountable problems, nor that Class A amps aren't good, just that the design has some characteristics that make them unsuited to most needs. There's a reason they're uncommon.

I am not sure a class a is any necessarily more susceptible to ac ripple on the powerline lines compared to class ab.... when you consider the amp as a whole, both can be mitigated ... I think the real issue is that they tend to be quite expensive as poweramp transistor designs, because they are inefficient generating a lot of heat that needs to be dissipated. Preamps  and front buffer stages on amps  tend to be class a because of the inherent quality class a designs can have by biasing into the linear part of the transistors transfer function, it’s just poweramp driver stages class a is less common because of the dissipation, powerhandling and efficiency issues.(For transistors)

well if it helps all Naim preamps are actually class A.

I found as Richard Dane reported many years ago, that the amplifier performance can only be as good as the source driving it.... (and that includes the source to preamp cable)

not really excited about amplifiers hierarchy or performance anymore, as I am with source improvements.

why not think of an LP12 turntable or NDS/555DR instead?

It's worth remembering that with true Class A power amps there's a large amount of waste heat.  This isn't just inefficient, it can have an impact on reliability and longevity of the components. I learned that the hard way some years ago with a well known UK class A amp that got really hot then broke down - too often for comfort.  The biggest problem was that every time it came back from the manufacturer it sounded totally different to before (not in a good way).  I got rid of it pretty quickly.

I quite liked the idea of a differetial output stage feeding a transformer, class A without the high primary currant of a single ended design. I’ve never heard one but I think Vacuum State came up with something like it using 300Bs. Costly mind but less than a 500. They would need sympathetic speakers which probably doesn’t include anything ending in BL.

Wow, enough from Naim disciples. Since no one in this forum seem aware of the brands of far superior quality which run solid state Class A, let alone understand the real benefits of it's sound. Since I mentioned this issue, it as usual has warmed up the attitudes of you usual smart alecs.  I have been all too honest and forgiving in the past, no more. This forum is run by a team of ëxpert" owners whom have opinions on every topic, as though they are the gatekeepers of all thinks electronic and naim. If Naim think Class A is all heat sinks, I refer their engineers to Boulder Audio USA, let alone all the other top shelf brands which CAN do it, all without huge heatsinks and NO transformer hum. Use your own ears, have a listen to horn speakers NOT through tubes but solid state, it has the creamy silkiness of tubes without the power limitations, bi-amped as was my post's first intention, it would be great.  Member "Simon of Suffolk" is a decent man with the nouse to always listen and play with an idea, not shut it down like a little weed. Listen hard ALL, I bought Naim, I own Naim, do I regret it? a little however the sound is fine for mid hifi. Therefore I have no issue with putting my thoughts down, I accept other views but no more smart alec comments.

Moderated Post: Aussiesteve, I have edited your post, removed what is not strictly relevant, and the unhelpful and substituted for the unacceptable language. Please keep your posts civil, to the point and not make observations on members. I don't see any particularly rude or "smart alec" posts leading up to this one that would in any way warrant such a response. The key here is respect - for the forum, the members, your hosts - as someone mentioned on here it's a "two way street". As an aside, Naim don't think anything on this thread, as they have not commented, and likely won't - they do what they do and use Class A where they feel it is best used.  If you want their view then you will need to ask Roy George. In the meantime, if you've found something different that you prefer then go for it.  There's no law to say you must stick with a certain brand and plenty of makers out there of very fine hifi equipment.

Hi AussieSteve,

I am not familiar with horn speakers but can understand where you are coming from. Most if not all horn speakers are high sensitivity designs hence can be driven by low-powered amps. Owners mostly use low-powered tube or Class A amps to drive horn speakers so I can somehow relate to the purpose of this thread.

I have owned a full Class A Plinius SA-100mkIII (100W) amp and the sound is surely, well, Class A - silky and creamy. I have also briefly tried the classic Musical Fidelity Class A amp when a friend brought it over. The sound quality of the Musical Fidelity amp is surely quite special and it runs very hot after 1 hour. As I changed speakers I figured out the "Naim sound" is more to my cup of tea. Specifically conventional BBC box speakers. I have no doubts Class A amps will be more suitable for specific systems or speakers when compared to Class AB or B amps apart from listening preference playing a role.

I have briefly checked on Boulder amps and they appear to be big and heavy with many openings for heat dissipation. Comprehensible if looking at the circuitry of the amp and the power that it puts out. These days, I prefer amps that are sleek, clean and discreet. I used to adore my Plinius Class A amp - huge, heavy and looking the part with beautiful heat sinks which add to the exclusivity. My uncle who isn't into hifi once mistook the Plinius for a high-end microwave oven when he visited as it looked huge and a solid chunk of metal.

Make no mistaken as the above is not a denigration of Class A amps. It is just an observation of the aesthetics of larger Class A amps. A small Class A amplifier can still look discrete and well, sound like a Class A amp. I would echo some of the sentiments here on Naim making a Class A amp purely on sound quality aspects. The Naim sound is quite distinct in my opinion and experience, and that is what that separates it from the rest of the Class A, AB or B amps.

I looked at the Boulder web site, not sure that’s class A to anyone but their marketing department. Modulating the bias current of the output stage doesn’t look like class A, nor does a nominal 300W power consumption on a 6000W amp but an interesting idea nevertheless.

What are the horns that need so much power? Usually you use  horns for their efficiancy and put up with their size and a bit of colouration for the sake of their dynamics.

You’re on a hifi forum, you’ve got to expect a few nerds.

 

well I looked at OP profile.

He is running CD5XS with a 282 and 2 Hicaps.

as he says I own Naim, Do I regret it, "a little"

You aren't getting your money's worth with that set up..... You really needed a CDX2 or CDS3 to get your money's worth of from  282.250 DR amplifier.

It really Needs to be said far too many people (I am guilty of that in the past) buy expensive amps, and then don't have the source at the same level to enjoy it properly.

My system at 202/200 level only started to make me smile and enjoy the tunes once I got the Chord Hugo and Naim Dac v1.

 

AussieSteve,

While I can acknowledge some of the lighter tones of your diatribe regarding a clique mentality here, I'd say what do you expect from a forum of Naim owners and why get upset about it? Some display a degree of tunnel vision on their choice to go with all Naim systems and can tend to get derisive. Other Naim owners are more open minded, happily use a mixture of brands, and realize Naim have no patent on PRaT, world class sound, or quality construction. There's also a handful of well-educated engineers and experienced dealers that offer objective views. Several responses here read quite constructive to me.

The odd part is that, as identified in this thread, there are plenty of high quality Class A manufacturers out there to choose from and it's obviously not in Naim's DNA to go there. You made a rather farcical wish on the Naim forum and got responses from Naim owners. I see you're essentially an all-Naim guy with your system. The reality is that if you want to include Class A amplification in it you'll have to introduce another brand.

As an owner of Naim intergateds for several years, I recently went from a SN2 to a Plinius Hautonga. Minor give and take, but overall I found the Plinius superior without a radical departure from Naim's sonic character. You're presumably Down Under, so maybe a demo of a Plinius Class A amp in your system wouldn't be too difficult? Or maybe you've done it already and hoping for better? Just my two cents, trying to be helpful.

thebigfredc posted:

I disagree with you AM.

As a previous owner of cd5xs/Nait XS I was amazed at the difference a 282 made. I had it with a 200 and then a Hicap and it was always enjoyable in a way the cdx2 couldn't manage when I upgraded the CD player.

Ray

But you sold all your naims for Rega ?

I agree with much of what you say Aussie Steve and respect your honesty I too am aware and sometimes annoyed by the hierarchical nature of this forum and can be made to feel a bit queasy at some of psychophantic posts toward those gatekeepers you mentioned but it comes with the territory I'm afraid there usually is a bit of the playground within these forums as they are populated by lots of overgrown school boys but as you mentioned there are also some very balanced members who can offer great advice.

My own advice from experience is listen to those balanced members ignore the rest and don't respond to the rest after a few beers. You are trying something different and that is great hope it all works out for you.

analogmusic posted:

He is running CD5XS with a 282 and 2 Hicaps.

You aren't getting your money's worth with that set up..... You really needed a CDX2 or CDS3 to get your money's worth of from  282.250 DR amplifier.

I've read responses here from folks that found a CD5X(S) more pleasing than a CDX2; the former "smoother, more analog", the latter "too aggressive" and/or "harsh, unforgiving". The notion that spending more on a source component will guarantee improved sonic results in a given system is pure poppycock to me. Furthermore, presuming to dissect another's system based on your own prejudices, or your own value of expenditures reads arrogant to me. Likely the kind of stuff that garnered the ire of the OP when he replied about "the shit from Naim disciples".

Aside from all that, and back to the OP, what does what you've interjected here AM have to do with Class A amplification?

nothing guarantees anything in this game, since expectations and the musical ear differ from person to person, not everyone got the same musical ear.

I thought it was pretty clear what I wrote, that instead of chasing down the amplifier upgrades like class A or whatever you got there "Plinius" (?) - to my ears after so many years, it's down to source to deliver musical satisfaction or not.

In my opinion Chord understand this very well, their DACs shine with pretty much any amp I've tried them with (Naim or not.) which makes me think, is it the source? is the amp? and to my ears, it's the source first that works for me.

282/250DR is a very fine amplifier, can respond to the highest level of sources, but will show up what is pretty much an  entry level Naim source which was meant to be used with a Nait XS.

When I used to own Naim DAC V1 it's musical prowess was easily audible on Non Naim amplifiers too.

People have used LP12 with a Nait, but nobody really uses a 552/500 with a entry level project debut carbon which is a sub 500 GBP turntable.

but whatever floats one's boat, you are happy with your "Plinius" and nobody can deny you are happier with that sound, anything can be argued in the Name of subjectivity and being so call open minded.

 in the end though, why is the OP asking Naim to build a class A amplifier?

Plenty of them available from other companies, so maybe the question hidden somewhere is how can I maximize the performance of my Naim setup?

 

 

 

How I wish you'd not waited so long, AussieSteve, to answer my second question, in the third reply.

I tend to be more interested in people's motive for change here, than in amplifier design, or which cable fits where, which is why I asked you why do you ask naim to make a class A amp. As someone who was trying to tease out your thinking (in I way that I hoped was helpful) your response to my first question was curt. Respect is a two way street.

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