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nakamichi
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What is the best amp for my new B&W 800 D3?

Hello everyone,
I have recently upgraded from B&W CM10 to B&W 800 D3 speakers. I was driving the CM10 with Musical Fidelity M6Si integrated amp and imo the MF M6 was perfect for the CM10 speakers. But ever since I upgraded to the 800 D3 I felt that my MF M6 integrated does not do my new 800 D3 speakers justice....it is far from ideal. And my new B&W 800 D3, driven by my MF M6Si, don't perform at their full potential especially in comparison to when I heard them at the store driven by the Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps and Classe CP 800 preamp/DAC. Not even close. The dealer told me that they can sell these Classe combo separates at discounted prices as these are the last pair (demo models) they have in store because these Classe Delta series gears have been discontinued 3 months ago. And I was told that Classe is launching brand new Delta Series products this summer but the price increases will be substantial from the original retail prices of the current or recently discontinued Delta Series gears such as the CP800 preamp and the CAM 600 monoblock amps. But I know for sure I will have to upgrade from my MF M6Si integrated to really good quality separates for my new B&W 800 D3.

The Classe CAM 600 monoblocks normally retail for $14k/pair and the CP 800 preamp was normally $6k but my dealer is willing to sell the CAM 600 monoblocks for around $10k or less and the CP 800 preamp for $4k or less.
So these Classe separates would be my first choice and they sounded excellent driving the B&W 800 D3 at the store.
I was told that the new B&W 800 series D3 speakers are designed around and specifically to be paired with Classe amps and no wonder they sounded great together when I demoed the 800 D3 speakers at the store.
But I'm open to other options too. What other options would be a great match for my new B&W 800 D3 speakers besides these Classe separates? I'm willing and prepared to pay for these Classe CP800 preamp/CAM 600 monoblocks combo and am willing even to go higher than that.

In addition to these Classe separates, I'm also considering the McIntosh separates MC601 monoblocks, Mark Levinson separates (monoblocks), Simaudio Evolution series separates (monoblocks), Audio Research separates (monoblocks), and Ayre separates (monoblock amps). But these Classe separates (CP800 preamp + CAM 600 monoblock amps) are my first choice as they sounded really good with the B&W 800 D3.
Which one would you guys think I should get? Please give me other alternatives as well.
Or should I wait for the upcoming new Classe Delta Series products that are going to be launched this summer perhaps even later this month but my dealer told me the price increases will be very substantial from the original retail prices of the recently discontinued Delta Series products and they might be out of my reach.
They told me the new upcoming Classe Delta Series amps will be class A/AB design with the first 35 watts in class A operation.
I need your advise and opinions. Thanks in advance.

caphill
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Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps

For your B&W 800 D3 speakers for sure I would get the Classe CAM 600 monoblocks and the CP 800 preamp/DAC. They will sound really good on your B&W 800. Classe/Rotel always have great synergy together with B&W speakers.
B&W voiced their speakers using Classe and Rotel amps/electronics. Your dealer was correct....the new B&W 800 series D3 speakers were designed based on Classe amps and meant to be paired with Classe amps.

In regards to the Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps ($14k), these are outstanding amps. You can read a review here on Stereophile by John Atkinson. He had nothing to say but was very impressed by the performance and sonic quality of these amps. He made a comment by saying that these were probably the best sounding amps ever made and perform to the same level as those cost-no-object amps that cost many times more than the CAM600 original retail price. While not cheap at $14k but its performances rival amps that cost way in the $40k range.
I wouldn't think twice about getting these CAM600 if you can swing it especially your dealer is willing to give you dicsounts on them.

Yes, the Classe Delta series have recently been discontinued and going to start seeing new Delta series products this summer but yes like your dealer said the price increases will be significant. I've heard the pre-production of the new upcoming Delta Series gears earlier this year at the audio show and they're fabulous sounding.

Btw, the CP 800 preamp/DAC is a great sounding preamp and has very good DAC but I would highly recommend that you use its USB input on the back if you decide to use its internal DAC. Its rear USB

caphill
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Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps

Sorry I accidentally hit the save and send button.
In regards to the Classe CP 800 preamp/DAC. Its rear USB input port sounded the best in comparison to the other digital inputs (spdif/coax digital & optical). Its XLR analog inputs are outstanding as well. Great sounding when used as an analog preamp as well. The CP 800 preamp coupled with the CAM 600 monoblock amps will guarantee a commensurate sonic finess and refinements along with excellent grips and the amount of power to drive your B&W 800 D3.

Tonally, the CAM 600 amps are neutral with smooth refined highs and deep extended very well controlled bass. This amp excels in PRAT (Pace Ryhtm And Timing), drive and control. The amp does not sound like anything.
This amp received rave reviews from pro reviewers. I'm using these CAM 600 amps to drive my B&W 800 D3 in my dedicated home theater room and using the CAM 300 single monoblock to power my center speaker.

Regarding all the other manufacturers eg McIntosh, Mark Levinson, Ayre, Simaudio etc those are great amps/preamps but IMO the Classe CAM 600amps/CP800 preamp will sound better on your B&W 800 D3.
I've heard the McIntosh MC601 monoblocks driving the B&W 800 and while the combo sounded very good but the bass was somewhat weak and soft with the B&W 800D3. The Classe/B&W combo are better.

The Simaudio Evolution series are phenomenal but for your B&W 800 speakers I would go with the Classe CAM 600 monoblocks.

Hope this helps.

nakamichi
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Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps

Thanks Caphill. Yesterday I went to my dealer and have a listen to the B&W 800 D3 paired with the Classe CAM 600 monoblocks/CP 800 pre, the McIntosh MC601 monoblock amps/C47 pre and Audio Research Ref 250 SE monoblocks/SP20 pre. I liked the Classe separates combo the best paired with the B&W 800 D3. They just sounded right together. You're right about these Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps. Everything sounded right, not overly nor lacking in these areas....tonality, transparency, details, impact, attacks, rythms, pace, speed, timing etc. And it was very musical.

So I finally purchased the Classe CP 800 preamp/DAC and Classe CAM 600 monoblock amps to pair with my new B&W 800 D3. Still need to run my speakers in order to be fully broken in. Great purchase and I got discounted prices on these Classe separates since they were recently discontinued items.
Can't be more happier with the purchases. Thanks again.

nakamichi
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My MF M6 integrated amp

I am selling my Musical Fidelity M6Si integrated amp and these Classe separates (CAM 600 monoblocks/CP 800 preamp) are huge upgrades sonically from my MF M6 integrated imo. But the price difference was huge as well.

nakamichi
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Not ditching my MF M6Si

I'm not trying to ditch my beloved MF M6Si. It is a very good integrated amp and loved it and it was perfect for my previous B&W CM10 speakers, but once I moved up to the 800 D3 I would have to upgrade to these Classe CP800 preamp/CAM 600 monoblock amps separates in order to do my new 800 D3 speakers justice.

I've been listening to several tracks that I'm familiar with my new setup and I've been playing these same tracks on my MF M6/B&W 800 D3 before I purchased the Classe separates. I played these same tracks over again now with my new Classe separates/B&W 800 D3 combo and the difference or the improvements was pretty immediate in all areas. Especially the bass. Those CAM 600 monoblocks sure had no problem moving driving the big woofers of my B&W 800 D3 and it did that with ease. Now with the Classe separates driving my B&W 800 the bass was very tight, controlled, fast, fuller, well extended and was more resolved than was with the MF M6Si. And the CAM 600 have plenty of reserve power and extremely dynamic and has deeper, quieter and blacker backgrounds on which the Classe painted its soundstage. And the music flows more naturally with the Classe separates....it was more fluid and has better sense of space and depth.

caphill
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Great combo

Glad you like your new setup. Congrats on your new purchases and upgrades.
I agreed with you in regards to those Classe CAM 600 monoblocks/CP 800 preamp combo, They are nothing but spectacular, esp the CAM 600 monoblock amps. Those are my favorite power amp for under $30k and imo is the best performing and sounding amp for under $30k to $35k range. Esp paired with the B&W 800 D3 speakers. These new 800 D3 have very low noise floor and is a great match with the Classe CAM 600 monoblocks which also possess extremely low noise floor with very super quiet black backgrounds in which the musical passages emerge. They are very musical amps and are capable to drive just about any difficult or very demanding loudspeakers without breaking a sweat.

I have listened to the pre-production run of the new upcoming Classe Delta Series gears at the Music Matters hifi show at my local dealer in Seattle this past March and they were better than the existing or rather recently discontinued Delta Series like the ones you just purchased but the price increases are significant. The new upcoming Delta Series products will be launched sometime this summer.

hu101
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would you please provide an

would you please provide an update on your rig? are you still happy with this configuration?

BibbieMok
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Hi.....when I drove my old

Hi.....when I drove my old Apogee’s, I used a Krell KSA 250. This was a match made in Heaven . With Panels you can never have too much power. I’d go with the BHK 300’s, if your budget allows for them. I have a pair now and I love the fact that I’m not limited by my amps when I do my next speaker upgrade.

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