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Quatro Wood CT to KENTO Carbon - Power Amplifier(s)


Schuesmp
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I am considering moving from my Quatro Wood CT’s to KENTO Carbon’s, or possibly even Model Seven XTRM’s depending on slightly uncertain financial factors. My preferred pairing with the Quatro Wood CT’s includes a pair of Balanced Audio Technology (BAT) VK-76SE vacuum tube power amplifiers in mono block configuration. Each mono block is rated to output up to 150 watts. Currently I use the 6 ohm output taps on each BAT power amplifier for connecting to the Quatro’s. My listening room is relatively large - 34D x 18W x 11H - but I sit only nine feet from the Quatro’s for listening (my preference based on substantial experimentation). The sound is glorious, and I never sense that the power amplifiers are struggling in the slightest, even at relatively high SPL. I very rarely listen to classical or other music with extreme dynamic swells - I crank the volume the most when listening to bands such as Tool, Muse, Audioslave, St. Vincent, Beck, The War on Drugs, etc.

My question: Would anyone caution against pairing my BAT vacuum tube power amplifiers with either KENTO Carbon’s or Model Seven XTRM’s?

My sense is that the pairings would work extremely well, but Richard Vandersteen has in the past illuminated highly substantive factors that I had not considered.

It goes without saying, but I am quite enthusiastic about potentially moving up the chain in the Vandersteen line. Magnificent speakers!

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10 minutes ago, Schuesmp said:

I am considering moving from my Quatro Wood CT’s to KENTO Carbon’s, or possibly even Model Seven XTRM’s depending on slightly uncertain financial factors. My preferred pairing with the Quatro Wood CT’s includes a pair of Balanced Audio Technology (BAT) VK-76SE vacuum tube power amplifiers in mono block configuration. Each mono block is rated to output up to 150 watts. Currently I use the 6 ohm output taps on each BAT power amplifier for connecting to the Quatro’s. My listening room is relatively large - 34D x 18W x 11H - but I sit only nine feet from the Quatro’s for listening (my preference based on substantial experimentation). The sound is glorious, and I never sense that the power amplifiers are struggling in the slightest, even at relatively high SPL. I very rarely listen to classical or other music with extreme dynamic swells - I crank the volume the most when listening to bands such as Tool, Muse, Audioslave, St. Vincent, Beck, The War on Drugs, etc.

My question: Would anyone caution against pairing my BAT vacuum tube power amplifiers with either KENTO Carbon’s or Model Seven XTRM’s?

My sense is that the pairings would work extremely well, but Richard Vandersteen has in the past illuminated highly substantive factors that I had not considered.

It goes without saying, but I am quite enthusiastic about potentially moving up the chain in the Vandersteen line. Magnificent speakers!

 

10 minutes ago, Schuesmp said:

I am considering moving from my Quatro Wood CT’s to KENTO Carbon’s, or possibly even Model Seven XTRM’s depending on slightly uncertain financial factors. My preferred pairing with the Quatro Wood CT’s includes a pair of Balanced Audio Technology (BAT) VK-76SE vacuum tube power amplifiers in mono block configuration. Each mono block is rated to output up to 150 watts. Currently I use the 6 ohm output taps on each BAT power amplifier for connecting to the Quatro’s. My listening room is relatively large - 34D x 18W x 11H - but I sit only nine feet from the Quatro’s for listening (my preference based on substantial experimentation). The sound is glorious, and I never sense that the power amplifiers are struggling in the slightest, even at relatively high SPL. I very rarely listen to classical or other music with extreme dynamic swells - I crank the volume the most when listening to bands such as Tool, Muse, Audioslave, St. Vincent, Beck, The War on Drugs, etc.

My question: Would anyone caution against pairing my BAT vacuum tube power amplifiers with either KENTO Carbon’s or Model Seven XTRM’s?

My sense is that the pairings would work extremely well, but Richard Vandersteen has in the past illuminated highly substantive factors that I had not considered.

It goes without saying, but I am quite enthusiastic about potentially moving up the chain in the Vandersteen line. Magnificent speakers!

If you are getting the volumes, you want with the Quatro's you will be good with the KENTO or XTRM's.  RV

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Thanks, responders. The dilemma is frankly silly - purchase with complete confidence KENTO Carbon’s now, or possibly (if financial uncertainties resolve as expected) purchase Model Seven XTRM’s three-to-four months from now. I am leaning heavily toward waiting it out. I mean, come on…Model Seven’s…not in my wildest dreams several years ago. 

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If you can safely afford the 7's, it's a no brainer.  I'm sure you have heard the difference.  The Kento is speical as heck and clobbers most other speakers I've heard under 80K or so.  I also  like other speakers that aren't named Vandersteen, but I am sensitive to time adn phase correctness (Loved Dunleavy's and Meadowlarks and a few others too).  For my money, the XTRM does things that Rockport's, Wilson's and Tidal's don't do  in their top of the line speakers.  I've been blessed to audition their top offerings and would chose the 7's over them.  

I've been waiting and will continue to wait on the preamp.  I could have bought a used one and then sold it later, but I didn't want to deal with the hassle etc, so wait I will do.  Will just make me happier when I get it in the system eventually.

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i am biased with 7 mk 2 and 7 amps.. considering how long you are likely to own these AND how many 8+ hour immersive listening sessions, i advise ordering  when financials resolve. I could have had the last pair of 7’s but chose to wait a bit and get “ his best “…. he never sleeps but i sense the extreme will be current for a good long time. i would spend the extra hours picking a stunning paint color 😉

best to you on your journey 😉

Jim

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15 hours ago, TomicTime said:

i am biased with 7 mk 2 and 7 amps.. considering how long you are likely to own these AND how many 8+ hour immersive listening sessions, i advise ordering  when financials resolve. I could have had the last pair of 7’s but chose to wait a bit and get “ his best “…. he never sleeps but i sense the extreme will be current for a good long time. i would spend the extra hours picking a stunning paint color 😉

I would be biased, too! If the Model Seven XTRM's fit into my finances as a doable purchase, I would almost certainly travel a reasonable distance to hear them in person, ideally experiencing their performance powered by tube power amplifiers in the range of 125 to 175 watts per channel. May not be possible, but I will try to arrange it.  

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That’s essentially what we did, making the 5 hour drive from Charleston, SC ( a high end audio desert ) to Atlanta Vandersteen dealer. We did our 6 + hour  ( my how time flies with great music provided by our host )  evaluation ….. We used SS power but that fit w our current amplifiers. Have fun 😉

This is a cherished photo from that day, whole family made the trip…. ha.

B92DA0CF-7172-42CF-AA3F-87F6C6E66A2D.jpeg

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On 8/9/2022 at 2:24 PM, TomicTime said:

This is a cherished photo from that day, whole family made the trip…. ha.

Extra wonderful listening with a good canine friend, even if they couldn’t care less about the time-and-phase-correct reproduction. 😉

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They look like Stages to me. Had those with their subs in the house for a spell.  I loved them.  Wife liked the ProAc's better.  I really loved those with a powerful tube amp (was it a Futterman?  Can't remember).  Also heard them a ton with the most powerful Krell.  Just a fun speaker that could do. some things great and somethings.... not as well.  The owners had some issues if I recall and it's why they stopped making them.  I met them at Bruce Kutin's in Providence.  I believe they were local guys but that was years ago now. 

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The Apogee story is really long and winding if you follow all the threads.  If you like to play the popular parlor game of "Six Degrees of Vandersteen Loudspeakers", there's even a tie-in.  

https://www.hifi-advice.com/blog/apogee-acoustics-company-special/apogee-acoustics-timeline-and-history/

https://www.hifi-advice.com/blog/apogee-acoustics-company-special/faq/

https://community.classicspeakerpages.net/topic/4429-ads-l1590/?do=findComment&comment=75563

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Braun_(company)

(may as well throw this one in, because of the tie-in to records and radio operas:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Procter_%26_Gamble)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DEI_Holdings

https://www.audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?23070-The-continuing-saga-of-the-charge-coupled-network&p=230317&viewfull=1#post230317

So, along the way, you have razor manufacturers, a former NASA scientist from Germany, a US Congressman, capacitor biasing, and what often happens when companies try to grow too fast and beyond their capabilities.  Not all overlapping, but they are part of the thread.  Yeah, looking through it made my head hurt, too.

One thing I loved about the Apogee speakers was that if you had the lighting in the room just right, you could watch the mylar respond to the music.  Kinda like watching woofers, ahh, woof.  Both my wife and I much preferred our own 2Ci's, so we stuck with them...

Excellent dog pictures all around, BTW.  👏

 

 

 

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For a heater, try the Gryphon Apex Stereo power amplifier as recently reviewed in Stereophile.  It generates just about as much heat as a large oven when operating in full Class A mode.

It will also help to hold the entire house down if struck by a hurricane or tornado.

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If they're being honest about full Class A operation, I calculate a power dissipation of around 4500 watts.  That's pretty much at the limit of what those two 120 Volt 20 Amp mains connections will provide.  They may be fibbing about the full Class A at maximum output power down to 2 Ohms, though.

BTW - why don't more amplifier manufacturers recommend using 220/240 Volt mains connections?  Obviously, their products run that way in Europe and some other places.  Radio hams are used to installing 220/240 lines to power their amplifiers.  I think the sorts of audiophiles who might buy super high power amplifiers probably would be on board for a dedicated line.  This is one of those mysteries I never got.

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