AUDIO FORUMS >> Reviews >> Decware SE84C+ amp PLUS CSP3 Preamp

Message started by erheum on 09/08/15 at 19:39:51

Title: Decware SE84C+ amp PLUS CSP3 Preamp
Post by erheum on 09/08/15 at 19:39:51

SE84C+ amp plus CSP3 pre-amp

Being the proud owner of an SE84C+ and using it to power my Klipsch La Scalas (with Crites upgrades) I would like to share my experiences with the addition of a Decware CSP3 pre-amp.  First of all, I was perfectly happy powering my Scalas with just the SE84C+, and nothing else.  I have a fairly large basement and I was able to get plenty of volume using my Schiit DAC.  The quality and transparency is outstanding and my upgraded Dynaco ST-70 has been benched, as there really is no contest.  A couple of months ago I purchased the CSP3 preamp.  As spectacular as my system sounded, the preamp made it sound even better.  Much better.   Almost like the amp on steroids.  Since I nor my amp ever used performance enhancing drugs, please take this metaphorically.  In any case, I am able to push a bit more volume (which I don't really need) without distortion and there is more fullness, roundness and warmth to the sound than there was before.  These are not subtle findings.  I don't know if the preamp makes the amp sound better or if it makes the components connected to it sound better.  Or both, which is more likely.   Aside from being a physician, I am also a Juilliard-trained cellist and my recommendations of both amp and pre-amp do not come lightly.  If you can manage one or both and your speakers are high-efficiency, you will do better and best.  As an added bonus, the preamp has an excellent headphone stage, and I have been using my Grados far more than anticipated, as my family has been (unjustly and unfairly!) complaining about the recent increase in stereo use during their bedtimes!  Finally, the ability to separately control the individual outputs/voltages of the left and right channels of the preamp is extremely valuable when fine-tuning your system to your acoustical environment or to your recordings.

Title: Re: Decware SE84C+ amp PLUS CSP3 Preamp
Post by IanO on 09/13/15 at 15:22:53

Thanks erheum, I intend to order an se84 soon and wondered if I should consider the csp3 as well. In your experience does soundstaging and transparency benefit as well?

Title: Re: Decware SE84C+ amp PLUS CSP3 Preamp
Post by erheum on 09/14/15 at 13:17:25

Quite honestly it's hard for me to comment on that yet.  I use my basement Klipsch/Decware system as my " Carnegie Recital Hall" as opposed to my "Carnegie Hall" Magnepan system in my more open living room.  Downstairs has been best, so far, for purity and richness of individual voices and instrumentalists.  Upstairs is my Mahler Delivery Device" where I am able to hear all the instruments in the orchestra very transparently and with a huge soundstage.    The huge power requirements of the Maggies prohibit experimentation with my 2 watt Decware but at some point it might be fun to bring the preamp upstairs and compare it to the solid state one I am using there now.

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