Intergrated or Power Amp Rec for Wharfedale EVO4.2


I’m doing a major upgrade of my desktop’s audio setup from budget to mid-fi, and so I’m hoping for some ideas regarding equipment. To summarize what I have so far, my new (and current) DAC is the Marantz HD-DAC1, and I plan on replacing my current speaker amp (Topping TP-22) and speakers (Infinity Primus P163). Now, I am pretty sure I’m settled on the Wharfedale EVO4.2 bookshelfs, but I need to figure out what I want to do for my amp.

Originally, i was planning on completing the Marantz stack with the HD-AMP1, but after some browsing, I was looking at others options, including either the Schitt Vadir or Aegir, the NAD C 368, or even the Cambridge CXA60. Now, I figured it might make things easier if I asked for recommendations online, so the main requirements I need are the following;

  • enough power to drive my speakers for a small room; for reference; my current setup is plenty loud for my room when my TP-22 (which is 30W RMS) is at the 10 o’clock position

  • input through RCA

  • small enough to fit with my current stack (the Marantz HD-DAC1 is about the square footage that I could deal with well

  • preferably, something mainly black, though I could deal with it if I had to get a different finish

  • max budget of $1000 USD, hard limit

If anyone would be glad to give good recommendations along these lines, that would be great.

And as an aside, is there a good source for four-conductor speaker wire?

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Is the Emotiva A-100 too big for you?

No, the A-100 is a good size for this. For reference, the HD-DAC1 is about 10" W x 11" D, and I can likely add another inch to the depth.

However, is the Emotiva going to be good enough (less power, more discernment of detail) to complement the Wharfedales? Or were you asking to have a reference?

Cambridge is very bright, not a great match with a ribbon tweeter.
The Rega Brio would be very small and this thing sounds amazing, very warm midrange and musical.
Creek Evolution 50A is a classic. Very nice and clean/neutral, exceptional resolution for the price.
The Leema Acoustics Elements Power Amplifier or Intergated might be something for you but I don’t know how expensive this stuff is in the US.
The IOTAVX SA3 has a very good price/performance. Neutral but not boring or harsh. You can add the PA2 and BiAmp your Speakers… would be a pretty nice and dynamic.

I was also thinking the rega brio, pretty nice amp imo

The creek and leema might be a bit harder to get in the us, and Cambridge isn’t the right match with these I would say as you point out

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@German_Power @blackjakals Well, the Creek and IOTA both definitely have the wrong form factor, and I have a feeling the Leema is definitely too expensive, so thanks for recommending the Brio.

I should mention, however, that the Wharfedale EVO4’s tweeter is actually AMT. Does that change things?

An AMT is essentially a different type of ribbon driver (close enough at least)

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well the Cambrige and NAD are bigger lol

The Brio is a great and has rock-solid build quality.
A good match for agressive speakers.

The Speakerwires dont realy matter at this budget.
But I would replace the bridges with a DIY jumperkabel from spate to banana and plug the speakerwires into the woofer.
If you want somthing quality at a budget I like the
StraightWire Soundstage (BiWire).

…Ouch, the price point for that cable hurt. I think I might go for Blue Jeans Cable instead, then.

The good stuff is expensive lol…
I honestly thing you are better of building cabels with decent parts yourself.

I was just asking if the size was right for what you were looking for. As for power, this amp will have more than enough for a nearfield setup.

Tweeter type doesn’t matter. All these amps should work well nearfield.

It does to an extent, but it’s moreso how the speaker was designed than the type of drivers actually used

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I’m speaking more to as far what amp you can use. Tweeter type shouldn’t determine the amp that is needed.

It does change how an amp will react though and how well some amps pair with it, but yeah it doesn’t really matter that much

So I’m taking a bit to think everything over, and now that I think about it, should I also look for a subwoofer connection, considering the Wharfedale’s only go down to ~48 dB? Or are we approaching placebo levels of bass? If so, do I want to change course from the Brio, which I’m planning on buying once I get the cash together?

I prefer to connect my subwoofer via the speakercabels an let the speakers do as much as they can and were engineered to do.
I will listen to the Wharfedale’s for you on Sunday at a big HiFi Convention. Maybe I have a better Idea of what to expect from them afterwards.

They didn’t have lower end Wharfedale stuff at the trade show only a linton 85… and they had a very very small sweet spot.

Would you guys recommend Class D or A/B for the EVO4.2?

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I would always go Class A/B with an AMT tweeter.