B&K Components AV5000 series II Amplifiers

4.56/5 (9 Reviews) MSRP : $1300.00

Product Description

5 channel amplifier

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Reviews 1 - 5 (9 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ron P a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 18, 2001

Bottom Line:   
This amp took a while to work itself into my system. I have the Reference 20 processor, to which the AV5000 II mates very well. Since the Ref 20 has an "analog bypass" function, I can remove the "digitalization" of stereo source signals and reveal the sound of the amp itself. Overall, this amp provides a well balanced sound, incorporating crisp, detailed highs with a well controlled bottom end. The 125 wpc allows it to accurately control larger loudspeaker transducers. The amp keeps plenty of current on hand for power hungry speakers as well - it takes a good 5 minutes to power down after shutting the unit off. Upon installation, my initial impressions were that this unit was too subdued and warm for my tastes. Bass was muddled throughout and lower mids were not at all detailed. Voices seemed very husky and guitar strings sounded as if the guitarist's fingers were covered by cotton gloves. GIVE THIS UNIT AT LEAST 50-100 HOURS BREAK IN TIME. After this intro period everything becomes tighter, more detailed and revealing. Also, ensure at least a 15-30 minutes under normal loads before sitting down for any critical listening as this unit needs ample time to warm up. I chose transparent cables upon recommendation of my audio store. For those willing to pay the money, these cables really enhance the strengths of this amp. My only "complaint" about this product is the audible hum it emits when placed within two feet of my processor. This problem is readily solved by placing the amp and processor at opposite ends of the audio rack. I'd say that this amp is a long term investment (if there is one in audiophilia) as it keep getting better sounding the more I use it.

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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000

Purchased At:   CSA Audio - Upper Montclair, NJ

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Stephen Edwards a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: August 22, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Ok, first things first. It appears as if all the comments I have read about B&K quality control are true. Got the amp home and the power indicator was broken. The amp worked, however no power light. I don't know about you, but I'm not prepared to settle for a less than perfect brand new product.

The dealer I purchased the amp from had a demo model which they lent me whilst mine was away for repair. As it turns out this was kind of a blessing in disguise. I've read all the comments about how this amp runs hot, and sure enough the loaner was quite capable of making my morning toast for me.

At the same time I bought the amp, I also purchased a B&K ST1400 (now called the called the ST2140) to bi-amp my NHT 2.5i's. These amps both share the same case, and I noticed that while the ST2140 had vents across the whole top of the case, the AV5000 only had vents across the sides.

When my amp returned from repair (a less than satisfactory 3-week period, don't know who to hold responsible; the dealer or B&K), I noticed that my AV5000 shared the same case as the ST2140. I don't know if the case is the only difference here, but I can attest to the fact the amp runs considerably cooler than the demo model the dealer leant me.

I was seriously considering buying an external fan to cool this puppy, but right now I don't any longer feel the urgency to do so. By the way if you are in search of a fan to cool your amp / receiver, in much searching I found the ELAN Z-Fan to be the best choice (retails at around $300).

Ok, now to the real stuff. I bought the B&K amps because I was never really happy with the SONY TAN9000-ES. I tried to remedy this by bi-amping my speakers, for this I used a SONY TAN220 bridged to 2 channels to drive the high end.

This set up was much better but still left me lacking something, so off I went browsing the web for new amps. So after searching around I got interested in the B&K reference line, hey I figured more power is what I need.

So I found my local B&K dealer and off I went and there I ended up buying the two B&K amps. Not the reference series I lusted after. The dealer assured me this was what I needed.

As soon as I got the two amps hooked up and played the first CD, all I can say is WOW! It was like night and day. These puppies just oozed power. Whilst listening to a rock CD with lots of guitar and bass going, the crack of the drums was crisp and clean. I was in heaven.

With the initial set up of the NHT's and the SONY amps I had become less than fond of some of my previously treasured CD's, so off I went and re-discovered them. I have to say that I was truly happy to find I could love these CD's again as more than a memory.

Compared to the SONY's these amps possess a warm sound that I personally love. The bass is fuller, vocals more pronounced and overall depth and clarity is far greater. Only occasionaly on really busy audio tracks does the sound become a little muddled in the mid-range.

As far as the performance in home-theater set up goes, I was never really disappointed with the SONY amps performance there. However with the B&K's I can certainly say I haven't lost any ground in that field, and have probably gained in the sense of overall impact and detail.

Hey what can I say I listen to the same audio CD's time and again, but I don't watch the same movies with the same frequency. I'd be lying to say I heard things whilst watching a DVD that I didn't before, but I certainly don't feel something is missing or lacking at any point in the movie.

Personally, I listen to more music than HT with the system and as far as musicality goes the B&K's are a whole new level. Here I can say I do hear things that before were absent.

As I mentioned earlier I thought my problem was power.The SONY is rated at 115wx5 the B&K is 120wx5, pretty much a wash there. The B&K is a higher current amp than the SONY and so I am told there lies the diffence. It takes at least a minute or two for the AV5000 to drain it's power once turned off.

I initially bought the SONY paired with the TAE9000-ES having done much research and decided that was the best bang for my buck.

Now the SONY retails for $1300 and the B&K for $1300, so for the same retail price I got an amp that leaves the SONY for dead. I guess the point is never always believe what you read, don't jump into buying the first thing you like.

With the purchase of these B&K amps, I've gone from yearning for my bosses Proceed AMP5 to being totally in love (for now at least....hey you know you've always got to buy something new every once in a while) with my current set up.

Ok, the bottom line is this. I love these amps paired with my NHT's. However, make sure you have a good dealer if you get B&K products. You never know (they're the only products that I still have the boxes for). It does seem that if it works it works, never had trouble with the ST2140 and the loaner worked fine. Apparently B&K need to be a lot better about their quality control procedures.

That aside, would I buy another B&K product? The answer is in a hearbeat. For the money, I don't think anything even comes close and the audio performance is wonderful.

My wife who is far from an audiophile truly loves listening to some of her CD's on this system now. And more importantly to her, I've stopped buying audio equipment in the quest for a better sound.

I have to give these a 5 star rating for value and a 4 overall due to the fact I had to have it returned to the factory after plugging it in. If I didn't love the sound these amps give me I have to admit the overall rating would probably be lower.

Current System

NHT 2.5i's Front
NHT Audio Center 1
NHT 1.5's rear
NHT Sub-One subwoofer
B&K AV5000 Series II
B&K ST2140 (Bi-Amping the 2.5i's)
SONY CA80-ES 5 CD Changer
SONY S500-D DVD Player
SONY MD330 Mini-Disc recorder / player
MONSTER POWER HTS3500 Power Center
LOVAN Soveriegn Racks
ULTRALINK Cables all around (all source connected via optical)

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000

Price Paid:    $1144.00

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by James a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: April 6, 2000

Bottom Line:   
A very warm sounding amp. We will be putting up a full review soon at www.dvdmonthly.com. Just thought I would share some things here first.

Again, the sound is very warm, very dynamic. We will also be looking at the Cinema Grand from Sunfire in the next few days, so I am curious to see the differences, as I've only used a few other amps before.

At first things seemed off, and not too great, however, once we tweaked the Ref 20 that it is paired with, we got great results. Also using an SPL meter helped greatly. We are using the system with NHT 2.9 speakers, and well as an NHT center and two HDP rears.

For music, at the moment, the setup is above average. However, I have yet to hear the Sunfire to make a good comparison, which I will follow up with. For HT the setup is damn incredible, and very theater-like.

More as it comes in.

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by John a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: January 6, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I borrowed this amp from my brother for a week because he was looking to sell it. A week was enough. I replaced the Adcom with this unit. The first thing I noticed watching a DVD is the lack of punch during the action scenes. This amp didn't provide the 'snap' that the Adcom did. This is probably due to the greater dynamic headroom and/or faster rise time on the Adcom. However, if you like a laid back sounding amp that is relatively inexpensive, then this amp is one to consider. On music, the amp wasn't as loud as the Adcom even though the B&K is rated at higher WPC, but the B&K did seem to control the woofers a little better. The sound is smooth with the B&K which is probably due to its MOSFET design (whereas the Adcom is a bipolar amp). Overall, this is a nice amp but it does not suit my tastes.

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999

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

Date Reviewed: November 26, 1999

Bottom Line:   
The B&K 5000 is a solid performer.I got it a couple a years back to replace the amps in my Denon 3600. The Denon was too bright and it lacked detail,sound stage and very fatigueing to the ears.The B&k amp smooothen things out.
Since then I have already replaced the Denon with an Act 3
and the marriage of the two is made in heaven.
I get great detail in most dvd movies and the bass is overwhelming. I seldom use the velodyne F1500 .
My only complaint with the B&K amp is that it runs hot and THATS IT. Proper ventilation and your good to go.

My HT consists of
B&K 5000 II
Accurus Act 3
B&W 603 front
B&W 601 rear
B&W CC6 Center
Velodyne F1500

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1997

Reviews 1 - 5 (9 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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