Quad ESL 57 buying advice, please

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savvypaul
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Re: Quad ESL 57 buying advice, please

Unread post by savvypaul »

Hi Andrew, I'd be up for you picking up a set of amps and then coming over when you're set up.

I do need to know more about the clamp that OTA have fitted, though, just to be sure that it doesn't present an issue to the amps.
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Bencat57
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Re: Quad ESL 57 buying advice, please

Unread post by Bencat57 »

Hi Paul

I am not the right person to be able to advise the technical details of what is fitted so I would suggest that you contact Andrew Jones of AQuadThing Audio who has done all the work on my speakers .

https://aquadthingaudio.wixsite.com/5763/contact

If you ask him what has been done then he can give proper technical details . If what you find out is okay with you then we can make some arrangements after that . If for any reason even if only a slight doubt on your part then my thanks for your offer but I understand why you would not want to go ahead .

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Re: Quad ESL 57 buying advice, please

Unread post by Bencat57 »

Adding this to this thread as information for those considering or interested but accept that this not probably the best place for it .

As I have indicated I own and use a pair of refurbished (by AQuadThing Audio) . I have used them with a Krell KSA 50 , an XTZ A100 Class A Amp and currentky a Croft OTL 3 . Now my hopes were that the Croft would be the ideal match and it is a very good and beautiful sounding amplifier . However from the start there is something between the Quads and the Croft that just does not match and while the sound is excellent there is a distinct lack of drive and lots of tracks just do not go loud enough .

Very frustrating . My Quad system is the only current non active one I have at home so I have needed to test my various NVA power amps due to an issue with my three way active which has resulted in me sending the 4 x KEF 103 speakers away to be be looked at and refurbished so they look nice .

But it may well be that the speakers are not the only issue so today as I had borrowed a pair of 500 Watt Class D Monoblocks too try with the quads and see what lots oof power would sound like which Andrew from AQuad Thing said was what was needed. At the same time I tried each of the NVA Power amps I have 2 x 20A latest spec , 1 x 30A much older spec , 1 x 60A again older spec .

Well the Class D worked fine and sounded okay but surprisingly not that dynamic or loud . The 60A showed that it had a fault and this is going to have to go back to NVA for repair/upgrade next week and then wait till they have the time to look at it . The 20A both worked fine and would drive the quads to quite surprising levels .

Then the biggest shock of all plugged the 30P in and from the first note the difference with all the other amps I had tried was just so noticeable . The sound was relaxed and natural with really great separation of instruments and voices . A clarinet now had that breathy woody and delicate sound which is almost liquid in quality . I have no idea why but this 30P just suits the Quads volume is not an issue so when lower recorded tracks come on there is plenty of control left to turn thing up but at the normal levels I am listening to there is just not any feeling you want to have things louder as they just seem right .

Now this is going to be on the one hand fantastic as I have now stumbled on a musical pairing that will encourage me to put this on more and not wander off and listen in other rooms . However the other issue is now I have nothing that I can use the the Croft for so despite it being a superb and really excellent amp I will need to get things together and sell it.

It will also be very interesting when I get the 60 A repaired / upgraded if that offers a similar or even better pairing than the 30 P . I know from chats with Richard that he used Quad ESL for early design of the NVA Amps and he always said that NVA amplifiers work well with Quads . I can confirm at least for the 30P this is very true . I am keeping my fingers crossed that the 60P when worked on can be even better as that can then just be inserted in to my main system and I can use the 2 x 20P and 1 x 30P for my active system .

If I had the money it would be nice to get the M600 in place but sadly not at this current stage of my life . I may also find that the 30P and Quads are just the sweet spot for both items and offer the best pairing we will have to wait and see. I promise I will get back and make comment on what the 60P has done and how it sounds when I get it back .
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Re: Quad ESL 57 buying advice, please

Unread post by Bencat57 »

Okay just a follow up I collected my NVA P60 on Thursday but that is a very small part of the story but will leave that to other times . When I say I picked up my P60 amp that is probably not that true . After the work NVA has done there is very little of my amp left that is not replaced or new . According to Paul and Mark this is now the equivalent of the current brand new P150 so not really the same little beast i sent back for repair . MY thanks go to Paul and Mark for all their work and help over this little sage they have been all you would ever want as a company backing up their product and making sure the customer is not only happy (which i very much am) but is also treated in a respectful and great way . All I can say is that if you buy from NVA then you have no worries you will be fine

Now to tired to put the P 60 in place with my Quad ESL 57 on Thursday as I collected the amp from Durham and at my age long drives wear me out . So Friday out cam the XTZ P100 and in went the P 60 . Decided to be sensible and once it was playing left playing with Radio Paradise at a low level and just got on with things sticking me head in every now and then to make sure it was still working. Then about 15.30 sat and listened to it . Sound is just what I have been looking for natural and powerful imaging was just so much better than with the XTZ . Strange to relate the NVA sounds very similar to the Croft with a really sweet and powerful midrange and bass what there is of it on the Quads is just right and fits the rest of the sound . It makes music with nice timbre and notes have a texture so you can hear what strings are being used and how they are being played. Vocals are just what I want real voices which are easy to follow and enjoy . Even gave Ace of Spades by Motorhead a little outing and was amazed at how powerful it could sound . The P 60 sounds much better than a P 30 more powerful and more in control . I am very happy and spent most of Friday night listening and then spent a few hours more on Saturday listening again . If you have a pair of Quads in particular the 57 then you really need to hear an NVA amp on the end of them . Richard used the Quad ESL 57 when he was first making the NVA amps and he made an amp that drives them really well and controls them which is not an easy thing to do as I found out to my cost with a series of amps that came and went .
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