audiosector pre-built LM3875 amp for 500$, are there better choices ? - diyAudio
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Old 29th October 2015, 02:15 AM   #1
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Default audiosector pre-built LM3875 amp for 500$, are there better choices ?

A friend of mine sells an audiosector LM3875 based (the premium circuit) two monoblocks, each one uses a 400VA/2x24v transformer, custom/locally made. These amps sound very accurate and precise, are very snappy, clear and bright with lots, lots of details. I still prefer listening with my old Quad 405 to some stuff, as it's more musical - much less detailed and very spongy compared to the chipamp though. My friend asks for about 520$ for the two blocks, saying that was the original cost of the parts. I still wonder what would it sound like if I used a cheap, Chinese made transformer for the two channels, building one for half the price (or less). 520$ sounds quite high to me considering the part (not including the transformer) are 100$... what do you think ? and are there better choices in that price range, for something which is as clear and detailed sounding ? I know I won't be able to sell it when I come across a nicer sounding amp, but its details... it's amazing :/
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Old 29th October 2015, 03:22 PM   #2
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jacques antoine's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2013
The most expensive part is the container which you did not consider.
2x400VA transformers is overkill. 300VA for both LM3875 or 150VA each would be plenty (unless it's a bridged system).
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Old 29th October 2015, 03:29 PM   #3
PJN is offline PJN  United States
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Pa, USA
If you can do a diy amp I highly recommend the diyAudio F6, cost should be about the same, but it easily surpasses chip amps. I know I have built several chipamps as well as several descrete designs, while the chipamps are nice they simply aren't in the same league as a well designed descrete, and the F6 is one of the best that I've heard.

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Old 30th October 2015, 11:28 PM   #4
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PJN - I'm very impressed with the headroom, details, clarity and how fast that two-monoblock LM3875 based amp is ! but something is missing... I'm missing some kind of warmth to the sound, I dunno know how to explain. It's like it is too sterile and lacking some kind of character to it, sort of a what you put in is what you get amp, but on the other hand, I realize that the moment an amp tries to bring that "character" is also looses something from the clarity and resolution - which the LM3875 really retains.

I don't want to spend 400-500$ for something I know that can sound better. So you basically would recommend going for a F6 amp instead ? (I'm a DIYer as well, no problem). The main expense on the chipamp are the two transformers, they cost about 300$ locally and were made by a local builder.
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Old 31st October 2015, 01:20 PM   #5
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Scottish Borders
Have you read Audiosector's design philopsophy?
He sacrifices bass for mid and treble.

That probably equates to a lack of bass compared to normal reproduction.
He also developed his product using very high efficiency 4ohms speakers.
That too will change the sound if you don't adopt his speakers.
regards Andrew T.
Sent from my desktop computer using a keyboard
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Old 31st October 2015, 01:38 PM   #6
wdecho is offline wdecho  United States
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Join Date: Oct 2014
I have built both gainclones and the 3875 was the best sounding in my system and it did sound very good and not a bad choice if you build it cheap. But defiantly build an F6. It is a big step up in sound but any of the Firstwatt designs are a vast improvement in sound.
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