Post by knucklehead on Dec 17, 2013 3:01:18 GMT -5
I split the load. The HK990 has HT bypass and acts as a straight-wire amp when its in that mode. The Yamaha is connected to it via preamp jacks and controls volume to the L/R speakers. The Yamaha powers the center and surrounds and does a fine job of it. The HK990 powers the front L/R. When a 5 or 7 channel AVR only has to push 2 or 3 speakers it has more power available for them since its no longer pushing the two power sponges - the L&R front channels.
I think the UPA-200 would be a great choice. The other one to consider would be the XPA-200. I think it has the same dimensions as the UPA-200.
Edit: I see the XPA-200 is slightly longer at 19".
However, you mentioned the reason not to jump to the x-series is space issues. I.e. you don't have enough depth. I know this is tough but.....I suggest figuring that out (by throwing money at it) and then after you do....go this upgrade path: 2 X XPA-1 L's.
later down the road: Emoiva DC-1. And maybe an XSP-1 to keep the bass management if you use a subwoofer. These are significant improvements. I only suggest it because your speakers look very nice
Transport: Sony BDP 5100 Blu ray player spdif PC using Musiland Digital Times WASAPI via BNC connection - DAC: DC-1->XLR XPA-1 , RCA->Basx A-100 CD: Denon DCD 600 PCM 61 DAC. RCA Amp: XPA-1 gen 2 using XLR connections. Speakers: Axiom Audio m80 V3, Sennheisser HD700 headphones. two pairs 12 guage each bi-wire speaker cables per monoblock Headphone amp: Basx A-100 (INCREDIBLE VALUE!!)
Other equipment: Asus Xonar essence ST Behringer UCA 202 Sennheiser HD600
I recently updated from a Arcam AVR350 to the Emotiva UMC-200/UPA-700 bundle. I also have XTZ speakers, the LRC are 99.26 MK1.
My main purpose for the update was the PEQ capabilities of the UMC-200, and the versatility of going to separates. Regarding sound quality, i wasn't expecting a major upgrade, as the Arcam is a fantastic receiver. I also don't believe in major changes from electronics. Nevertheless, i was expecting the Emotiva to be a little more dynamic with movies, and less forgiving in stereo, due to the sonic differences between the Wolfson DAC and the Cirrus.
This weekend i installed the Emotiva combo, and the difference from the Arcam is very subtle. Power wise, in my ceiling of 49m2, both the Arcam and the Emotiva enable me to reach unsupportable levels without distortion. My expectations were confirmed, the Emotiva is a little more dynamic with movies, and the center speaker is more pronounced than with the Arcam. In stereo, with good recordings, the Emotiva is as good (maybe a little better) as the Arcam, but with poor recording, the Arcam is more forgiving and enjoyable.
To be completely honest, if i didn't know there was a system change and the hardware was hidden, i wouldn't be able to discover that there was a system change. Knowing the change happened, and if listening closely, i was able to detect subtle differences in the presentation of both systems.
Please note that i was using the FLAT settings, and i believe that using the full capabilities of PEQ would allow the Emotiva to outperform the Arcam.
In your case, the 99.36 are more demanding than the 99.26, so if you feel the Anthem strained, adding a UPA-200 to power the mains could be a significant upgrade, and would free the Anthem to power the remaining speakers. As the Anthem has an excellent ARC calibration system, unless you want to fully explore the PEQ, i don't think you need the UMC-200.
Unless that, as me, you also want the flexibility of separates, and in that case, the UMC-200 combo is an amazing performer for the price. Due to taxes (as i live in Europe), i had to pay almost 2x the cost of the bundle, and even so, it was a bargain. Paying the actual 799$ only, its an unbelievable bargain
Ner20013 / Thanks for your extensive reply, unfortunately you dont make it easier for me, if you only detect a subtle change.
I am very happy with the ARC system in my reciever, actually the only thing I feel I am missing, is that little extra that i know theese speakers are capable of, i just cant decide if this is the way to go, or if i have to wait till the space an $$ are allowing me to choose an XPA amp.
(I also live in Europe, so i know all there is to know about the "stupid" taxes )
Please note that this was what i was expecting ... the Arcam drove the XTZ 99.26 with ease, and the same happens with the UPA-700.
In your case, it could be different, as the 99.36 are a lot more demanding. If the anthem is strained and cant reach max volumes without distortion, adding a power amp would probably be an effective update. I'm my case, at my listening levels, i doubt the XPA-5 instead of the UPA-700 would have much benefit. In your case, as the 99.36 are a lot more demanding, you could need a more powerful amp to fully extract their potential.
The problem for us Europeans (at least while the European branch inst open), is that returning an amplifier would almost be equal to its price. As such, an UPA-200 to drive the 99.36 could be a secure and not too expensive option. The 99.36 would welcome the extra power of the UPA-200, that could be even more dynamic than the XPA-5 due to the extra capacitor (90uf vs 60uf). The anthem is more than enough to power the other speakers, and certainly that ARC would do an amazing job integrating it all.
I would say go with a UPA-200 for the mains and let the receiver power the rest for now, I have owned a UPA-200 for outdoor speakers but did have it connected to my RX6 towers and it easily drove them very loudly and sounded great doing it, do you live in the U.S. ? the 30 day trial IMO would be excellent for you, me being in Canada costs too much to ship across the border but I have never had any reasons to send anything back.
What made you upgrade, if the UPA-200 did so great? What did you feel was lacking?
I live in Europe, so returning the unit is not really an option :-)
Nothing was lacking with the UPA-200, I had a XPA-5 gen1 and the UPA was powering my outdoors and then a used XPA-2 came up locally for $500 so I jumped on it and used it for my mains and the XPA-5 was for my center, surrounds and zone 2 outdoors and didn't need the UPA-200 so I sold it.
A used UPA-2 just came up on the lounge for $190 plus shipping from the U.S. which might be cheaper then the UPA-200 new, another option for you.
Btw. How did you wire your UPA-700? Are you running 7.1 or bi-amping or?
I'm using a 5.1, bi-wiring the mains, as i was doing with the Arcam. In your case, and due to the demanding nature of the 99.36, the XPA-200 would be a great addition, as it has a lot more power than the UPA-5/7. It would also allow to use the 99.36 in full range as stereo.
The Anthem power stage is very good, and more that enough to power the remaining speakers, even if you are using a 7.1 configuration.