Krell MRA Amplifiers

5/5 (2 Reviews)

Product Description

1,000watts/8ohms - 16,000watts/0.5ohms

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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

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

Date Reviewed: December 2, 2009

Bottom Line:   
SETUP: The MRAs come in wooden crates and weigh in at 683 pounds each not counting the crates. They are removed by unscrewing the top of the crate then unscrewing one side to allow easy removal of the upper section of the crate. The monoblocks sit on sturdy plastic like foam which rest on the heavy duty skid. You can move the MRAs by putting a sturdy four wheel dolly under the skid and rolling the skid to wherever you need the amp; however, it was NOT recommend using a floor lift on just the amps as you can bend the heat fin covers. It takes six strong men to life the MRA from the skid (one on each corner and one on each side) and be prepared for the operation to be difficult. One would assume with the men only having to lift approximately 115 pounds each the operations would be simple; however, the weight distribution combined with different height and strength people makes the task awkward and difficult. You want to ensure to have a sturdy and smooth base to sit the amps on and you do not want to put them directly onto carpet (air circulates upward from under the amps and they would not be able to cool properly when they sank into the carpet). My MRA sit on granite stands (3cm thick) so they do not rest directly on the carpet. The amps are really meant to be professionally set up, which is evident by the very minimalistic owner’s manual.

LISTENING: I have had the good fortune to own a number of high quality solid state amplifiers to include; the older Threshold S500 Series II, the Krell KSA-300S, the Classa’ Omega, the Pass X-600, and the Pass X-1000. I’ve also listened extensively to a number of other high quality solid state amplifiers. As my last amplifier before the MRA was the Pass X-1000, and the amp I’m most familiar with, I’ll use it as my rather succinct comparison. I’ve not gone into a longwinded dissertation of the MRAs sound, but more a brief description of the basic similarities and differences. The MRA are not supposed to have more power than the Pass X-1000s as both are rated at 1,000 watts RMS at 8 ohms and 2,000 watts RMS at 4 ohms; however, I do not need to go into the 2 or 1 ohm range where the MRAs would shine with extra power. However, I did get the impression when listening to the MRAs that they had more power than the Pass, which could have been somewhat psychosomatic due to the MRAs size. The MRAs reportedly can double in power down to .5 ohms (16 kilowatts) if you have the incoming electrical power commensurate with such an output. So stated, even if you had the amps built at 240 volts with a 40 amp setting you still would only obtain 9,600 watts and this does not take into consideration entropy within the system. Ergo, the 16 kilowatts figure is probably theoretical based on the transformers sizes (my opinion here). Imaging was excellent and both amps excelled at bringing out all the nuisances within the music. I was not able to hear more of anything (instruments or vocal) with the MRA over the Pass; however, the overall sonic difference was distinct. The MRAs are just smoother and more relaxing while the Pass, which is a very high quality amplifier, was brighter and more, for lack of a better statement “in your face” type of sound. No matter how long my listening secession were with the MRAs, I’ve never gotten fatigued or wanted to turn them off. The more you listen to the MRAs the more you enjoy/appreciate them and I would not even consider going back. I have never seen these amplifiers professionally reviewed, but will stand behind the statement that you won’t find a better sounding solid state amplifier on the market. For anyone who has just listened to them for a few minutes or a few hours, my suggestion is you spend more time with them at low power levels to really enjoy the quality of music they are fully capable of reproducing.

BACKGROUND: I was told by Krell representatives that only about 50 pairs of these where produced. They were made from 2000 into 2006, and originally cost $120,000 for a pair while at the end of the production the price increased to $150,000 a pair. Mine were dealer demos which were obtained at a substantial savings. The operating temperature of the MRAs is about as warm as the X-1000s; however, because of the greater surface area they end up putting off more heat.

COMMENTS: A number of my setup comments above were done to validate the veracity of my statements about the MRAs, which are not just trumped up hypothetical nonsense, hyperbolic rhetoric from a brief listening experience in a store, or suppositions from literature. Not to be obtuse, but I would suggest that unless you have spent a number of hours listening to these amps, and have some background owning and listening to other high quality solid state amplifiers, you refrain from making comments about a product you really know nothing about nor truly understand. With the new high quality switching amplifiers available and the trend to lighten electronics it is doubtful that anything like the MRAs will ever be produced again. We could discuss cost versus product/sound almost indefinitely with both sides of the argument having merit, but such banner would really be useless. Yes, they are expensive, but then so is a Ferrari compared to a KIA!

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2002

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by audiav a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: October 18, 2004

Bottom Line:   
This first guy is absolutely crazy. I have had the pleasure of working with the Krell MRA amp first hand and hearing the gold woven sonic honey that amp can produce. This is THE undisputed reference standard, buddy, if you do not feel it suits you (man who has never owned or operated an MRA), then the least you could possibly leave is 4 stars, come on... better yet do not post SINCE YOU CANNOT REVIEW IT. I feel extreme anger at having to wade through inept people's posts to 'get the real deal'- and reading your post is going to cost me at least $1000 in therapy to purge from my mind.

FINAL SAY- if you can buy & setup this amp(s) set sucessfully, you will have THE finest amplifer(s) made to this date- BAR NONE! (they come in pairs).

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001

Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

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