Recommend a NS10 Amp?

For everything after the recording stage: hardware/software and how you use it.

Moderator: Moderators

Post Reply

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by ablethought »

James Perrett wrote:
Hugh Robjohns wrote:The NS10 really isn't that fussy about the power amp.


Maybe I was unlucky but the Teac amp that we had in the studio really brought out the worst in them.

I haven't tried a new 405 clone although the modules are so cheap that it seems tempting. However, having just done a little searching, it appears that they are based on a very early version of the 405 and suffer from all the disadvantages such as high noise levels and a mistake in the Zobel network routing. I'd prefer to go for a genuine 405-2.


Interesting, clones no good then. 405-2 is the right model.
ablethought
New here
Posts: 6 Joined: Thu Aug 13, 2020 1:12 pm

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by James Perrett »

One other thought - if you are into DIY you could always remove the insides of the Crown or Crest amp that you have already and replace them with Hypex modules which should be within your budget. I did a similar thing with a noisy 405 a few years ago and it cost me around £250.
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 11373 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by ablethought »

James Perrett wrote:One other thought - if you are into DIY you could always remove the insides of the Crown or Crest amp that you have already and replace them with Hypex modules which should be within your budget. I did a similar thing with a noisy 405 a few years ago and it cost me around £250.


Don’t mind doing that at all. Can you link me to what you used?
ablethought
New here
Posts: 6 Joined: Thu Aug 13, 2020 1:12 pm

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by James Perrett »

ablethought wrote:
James Perrett wrote:One other thought - if you are into DIY you could always remove the insides of the Crown or Crest amp that you have already and replace them with Hypex modules which should be within your budget. I did a similar thing with a noisy 405 a few years ago and it cost me around £250.


Don’t mind doing that at all. Can you link me to what you used?


The closest that I can find to my setup is 2 of these

https://www.diyclassd.com/product/ucd180hg-with-hxr/5

coupled with one of these

https://www.diyclassd.com/product/smps400a180/138

and the matching power supply cable set (I think I made my own amplifier cable set).

They only sell the upgraded amplifiers now which adds around 60 Euros to the total cost compared to my build.
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 11373 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by Arpangel »

I’d say you want to steer clear of lean sounding bright amps, the 405 is fine, it’s got some grunt and isn’t too bright. Audiolab 8000A is another one to consider, very nice amp, quite neautral.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9188 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That would be an ecumenical matter.

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by DC-Choppah »

Go on ebay or your local pawn shop and look for high quality old stereo equipment.

There is some great stuff out there.

For example: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Rotel-RA-02-St ... SwqfVfMDK1
User avatar
DC-Choppah
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1805 Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:00 am Location: MD, USA

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

James Perrett wrote:Maybe I was unlucky but the Teac amp that we had in the studio really brought out the worst in them.


Intriguing... define 'worst in them' please! ;-) I think I've only knowingly heard one Teac amp, and I wasn't enamoured. As I recall, I thought it sounded 'fizzy' and lacking control.

However, having just done a little searching, it appears that they are based on a very early version of the 405 and suffer from all the disadvantages such as high noise levels and a mistake in the Zobel network routing.


That seems a disappointing cockup. Which clones are these? I think there are a number of different ones about aren't there?
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 32353 Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound...
(But generally posting my own personal views and not necessarily those of SOS, the company or the magazine!)
In my world, things get less strange when I read the manual... 

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by James Perrett »

It was a Teac AX75 amp Hugh - originally sold by Thatched Cottage Audio to partner the NS10's. Plenty of power but with an exaggerated high end.

I just did a quick Ebay and Google search where it seems that the Chinese 405 modules are often proudly sold as Mk1 modules with NOS 301 op amps. Other forum comments turned up the issues with the early modules and mentioned the fact that the design was taken from a published article which presumably gets around any legal issues. I see there are also a few that are marked 405-2 which, if they are accurate copies, will have overcome these issues although they possibly could do with a few mods to optimise their sensitivity for studio use.
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 11373 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by Sam Spoons »

Hugh Robjohns wrote:Unlike some here, I actually found the Quad 405 (hifi) or 520 (pro) amps worked very nicely with NS10s. Yes, they are discontinued, but they are easy to source second hand, built like tanks top last a lifetime, easy to maintain, and Quad will still service them to as-new condition for astonishingly little outlay, if necessary.hugh


A bit late as I've been travelling down to the coast but Quad were not remotely interested in fixing my 522, or advising the engineer who was attempting to fix it (he failed). Thankfully Folderol has sorted it out for me (I have yet to plumb it into the studio and my period correct Kef 104ABs, sorry Foldy :blush: ). There were a couple on ebay in much better condition than mine, the cheaper went for about £250 IIRC but I wanted my 522 fixing partly for sentimental reasons, I've owned it for around 30 years, and partly to avoid another bit of kit ending up in landfill.

OTOH, I did buy a mint condition StudioSpares Titan 600 off ebay for £65 delivered a few weeks ago so bargains do exist.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 16134 Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am Location: Manchester UK
Your karma has run over my dogma

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by Angelface78 »

Hello, I am a newbie here:-) However, I have read SOS magazine for over a decade, so I thought what better place to come to get advice regarding my next home studio purchase?!!

I am in the market for a new amp to drive my NS10’s. I have previously used Hifi Amps with them, but I have been looking for something with balanced inputs (which my current Yamaha AS301 amp does not have). I don’t personally have any experience with using the NS10’s on more expensive or vintage amps, but I have visited a few studios that have and based on my research I am learning more and more about them and it appears the amp does make all the difference to how these speakers sound……Or does it?!

So it’s interesting to now see here that the NS10’s are not really fussed by the amp they use! I have been following Hugh Robjohns articles for many years and so know he is very well versed in this area and he knows his stuff! So, I cannot simply overlook what he says. I am therefore now wondering whether the investment I was considering is really going to make a huge difference like I have read it would?! I was considering the Avantone CLA-200, but I would be really interested in hearing from anyone that uses it or has used it in the past. Or from anyone that could recommend a suitable alternative. I am in the market for a brand new unit and don’t require it to have DSP, but balanced inputs are a must!

Many thanks in advance😄
Angelface78
Poster
Posts: 37 Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2021 10:56 pm

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by James Perrett »

If I was in the market for a new amp now I'd see if I could find one of the Monacor or IMG Stageline STA-400D amps. I'm not sure if they are still current but the electronic design looks almost identical to the monitor amps that I built from Hypex modules.

https://monacor.co.uk/sta-400d.html

They're amazing value for money (assuming that they haven't messed anything up in the additions that they've made).
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 11373 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page

Re: Recommend a NS10 Amp?

Post by Arpangel »

If you like the sound of your current amp, just add an ART Clean Box, instant balanced inputs, and a cheap solution.
I did this with my Quad amp, works perfectly, gets rid of all the noise and hum.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9188 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That would be an ecumenical matter.
Post Reply