Aragon 4004 MK II Amplifiers

4.64/5 (14 Reviews) MSRP : $1850.00


Product Description

200X2 @ 8 Ohms Amp 400X2 @ 4 Ohms


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Reviews 1 - 5 (14 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by instant happiness a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: June 9, 2008

Bottom Line:   
Got the Aragon 4004 about three years ago, when the audio bug bit me, and the more I get exposed to other gear, the more impressed i am with it. I use it with floorstanding Polk speakers, Marantz Esotec SC-6 preamp and an ADC sound shaper 3 equalizer.

First - it is built like a brick, and weighs like a ton of bricks: I think it weighs about 50 Kg, and only when i got it I realised why shipping was so costly.

Second - it is a no nonsense amplifier: it has an on/off knob on its face, and thats it. This amp is purely for 2 channel listening, and not a home theatre amp packed with toys nobody ever gets to use. I would have liked to have the ability to hook a second pair of speakers or a sub though. Its look is distinct with that "A" like groove: very understated and yet a statement. Looks borderline industrial with that metal black brushed metal face. Actually, up close and personal, this amp looks better than it does in photos.

Third - the sound: BOY, DOES THAT AMP SOUND HEAVENLY! Although its rated at 200W per channel, I doubt anyone here ever uses a half of it, and I can testify that the volume knob on my Marantz Esotec SC-6 (a perfect preamp - period)rarely moves more that a tenth of a turn, before the volume reaches "the police at the door" range. Seriosly. Anyway, the Aragon 4004 works magic even at low volume, which is where most of us listen, making it practical - the bass is always there, heavy footted and sure. Seperation is wonderful: although I think that seperation is mostly a preamp job, the amp, being the last link in the chain may ruin it - but not the Aragon. It really does a magnificent job sound wise. I read that the team that designed this amp is a Krell team, and although I have not done a face to face comparason with a Krell, my cousin's Krell's sound has the same "charachter", and that says a lot about the Aragon.

One comment though: Before i paired the Aragon with the Polk and Esotec, i paired it with a pair of bookshelf KEF Cresta 2 and a McIntosh C-28. The KEF Cresta 2 are excellent little speakers, but hardly enough for that amp. The McIntosh sounded poorly when paired with the Aragon, and I was disappointed at first. But than i moved the C-28 to the home office where it was paired with a Hitachi HMA-7500 amp (a fantastic sleeper IMHO - got the HCA-7500 too, and boy these are good for rock and pop but not classical and blues) and a pair of KEF Chorales and WOW! Point made: Components need to be carefully matched before deciding.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   ebay



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by ritesh_laud a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: December 9, 2003

Bottom Line:   
A couple months ago I upgraded my speakers to Sonus Faber Concertos. At 86 dB sensitivity they require some muscle to drive. With my Harman Kardon AVR 55 receiver the sound was very thin and lacking bass.

I got this unit off Ebay (in fact, bought it from the previous reviewer) and boy is this thing a brick. At 70 lbs it's twice the weight of the HK receiver, which has five channels of high-current amplification! It utilizes a dual mono design and has the signature notched vent to allow stacking of other components on top. I believe it runs in Class A because it gets quite warm regardless of whether it receives a signal.

Once I hooked it up I noticed an immediate improvement in the bass. The Concertos need a subwoofer for full-range sound, but there was a definite increase in the lower frequencies. In addition, the Aragon is more neutral than the HK and tames some of the natural forwardness of these speakers. However, the high end is still very detailed and crisp. I have an audiophile friend who owns a massive Krell amp and he's impressed by the sound from my system as well as the solid build quality of the 4004.

Later I got a Parasound HCA-806 multiamplifier for my other channels. I did an A/B comparison with the Aragon on the front channels. With the HCA-806 the bass dropped off significantly but the midrange became louder. The 4004 is more neutral and I think it sounds more natural. However, there were a couple songs I preferred on the HCA-806 even if it made the Concertos even more forward than before.

I'm very happy with this purchase. After upgrading to other hi-fi components (listed below) I can honestly say that music has never sounded better on my system.

Aragon Soundstage preamp processor
Ah! Njoe Tjoeb 4000 CD player
Sonus Faber Concerto speakers

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $850.00

Purchased At:   Ebay



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by pangl a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: September 24, 2003

Bottom Line:   
The Aragon 4004 MkII has been around for the longest time in my audio collection. Back then, around 1993, this amp has been used numerous time by various Stereophile reviewers as the reference amp to evalulate other products. So I jumped on the bandwagon as well.

Since this amp is designed by the principal engineer at Krell (I guess it is an subcontract deal between Aragon & Krell), you'd expect the Krell sound. And you are right! This is absolutely an poor-man's Krell!

Like the superb Krell 300i integrated amp that I put my $0.02 in this forum, Aragon 4004Mk II is a great amp only if you have the right equipment. It is absolutely ruthless, garbage in garbage out. You may find one in the used market from $700-$1250, but don't contempt to pair the amp with cheap pre-amp and CD source.

This amp sounds best with a warmer, more musical tube pre-amp such as Music Reference RM 5 or Sonic Frontiers LINE 3. or an VAC preamps. Speaker matching is crucial as well - I won't recommend any bright, very forward sounding speakers unless you like the typical Krell sound.

If you use an musical tube preamp, and match the 4004 Mk II with electrostatic or planar (I know Magneplan 3.6R and 1.6QA sound absolutely stunning in this setup), you get yourself pretty darn close to audio nirvana land without an home equity loan.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $1450.00

Purchased At:   Local dealer



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by monm a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 22, 2002

Bottom Line:   
This brute surely has a lot of power to drive my vintage AR90. Distortion is minimal but it starts to present itself past the 12o'clock(volume knob)mark of my Aragon 24k preamp. It has impressive low to mid listening level detail and clarity.

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $900.00

Purchased At:   Sensibe Audio



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Alex a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: March 23, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Back again! Problem solved. I bought some Anaysis Oval Nine cables, and presto - it's showtime! I have had and heard quite a few amplifiers in the past, probably enough to open my own stereo shop,but the Aragon seems to stand alone in its ablility to everything right. I have owned Krell, Linn, Conrad Johnson, and Ayre amps and they don't seem to have the personality and involement, with the exception of the Ayre, that the Aragon brings to the table. I am going to to upgrade to the 8008bb in April. I would like to audition the 8008MKII, but living in the great northwest, I have not found an Aragon dealer. I have to rely on audiogon to provide the merchandise! I will keep the 4004MKII and use it for a center amp.
Equipment used:
Aragon 4004MKII
Audio Research LS-15
Cal Audio Delta
Meridian 563 DAC
Epos ES14
KEF Q60
MIT XLRs
Analysis Oval Nine 11' cables (great cables, especially after havein Nordst, MIT, Straightwire, Transparent, AudioQuest, and Monster!)

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   private party




Reviews 1 - 5 (14 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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