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Sunfire Signature Stereo Amplifier
40 Reviews
rating  4.13 of 5
MSRP  2175.00
Description: 300w/ch., designed to drive any impedance load


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Reviews 1 - 5 (40 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Da Ear a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: January 11, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Unbelievably great imaging, wonderful layering of soundstage depth and width and (most impressively) Height!
My Apogee Duettas have never sounded so dynamic! I have also heard this amp drive a set of Monoliths and I found it to be a very symbiotic match, controlling the beasts in their owner's estimation better than the Crown Macro Reference he was using at the time.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Price Paid:    $3200.00

Purchased At:   Big wampum stereo emporium



Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Fernando Saldanha a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: January 6, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I compared the Sunfire Signature with the Musical Fidelity A3cr, and it was no contest. The MF is much faster, detailed, lively, and smooth. I cannot agree more with a reviewer that said the Sunfire made the speakers sound as if they were within carton boxes. In fact, I said the same thing earlier today, before reading that review. When I switched to the Sunfire, my girlfriend, who was in the other room, immediately shouted "What happened?" She composes classical music and has a terrific ear (much better than mine). She was even more adamant against the Sunfire than I was. I also agree with those who said it does not provide a high end experience. It lacks detail and delicacy.

There was only one area where the Sunfire beat the A3cr: bass. Even so, I did not find the bass of the Sunfire fully convincing. But I admit this could be due to the deficiencies of my speakers in this area. The A3cr is rated at 120W/channel into 8 ohms and can be "bridged" as it has outputs on the back that you can connect to the other channel's input. Since the A3cr costs $1600, maybe one could get better bass by buying a pair and using one to drive each channel, and still be at a reasonable cost level. I don't know if that would provide enough bass, but I know I would not buy the Sunfire.

I have not tried biwiring. I tried both the current and voltage outputs in the Sunfire. I also tried the normal and lab inputs. Could not hear much difference between all those. Most of the listening was done with current/normal.

The A3cr's are loaners. My VTL 300s are out for retubing. I will post a review comparing those when the VTL's are back.

Equipment:
Cheap Sony DVD player (as transport)
Perpetual Technologies PA-3 DAC (my PA-1 went bust and is being fixed)
Wireworld and Straightwire interconnects
Tara Labs speaker cables
Martin Logan Aerius i speakers

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2001



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ned Goldeneerz a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: January 2, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Please note: that this review is of the "Signature" amplifier. (borrowed for a short time prior to online used purchase,Thanks Jack!)
Basically, this is to offset that ridiculous "ping" posted right before me (though elementary statistics will tell you
that it doesn't really work, which is why it happens in the first place).
The only amps that MIGHT control a persnickety speaker load better than this amp does in stereo are the Mac and Krell mono blocks. If you buy two of these and bridge 'em(I assume they'll bridge, but WHY?) my guess (I admit I haven't bought a second yet, as the folks in neighboring towns don't appreciate their lights browning out to the distant sound of the Telarc 1812)is the Sunfire product will kill those as well. Check out the TAS reviews of both units. For once right on target. Even though to my ears they make too big a deal of Bob's engineered "Gundry dip", probably just to discourage him from talking so much. (They really seem to hate that, though they should stop, because,it's precisely what they do for a living) If they could design a Class A (quality, not class of operations)amplifier(turning their reaction to the Carver challenge back on them)then WHY DON"T THEY? The last amp I plan to buy. One for the ages.
Or to summarize to "Whomever": Sunfire make good sound. detail,soundstage
super-duper,output stage has really big swinging ding-dong er, I mean voltage/current. Not sure Sunfire amp made before 1995. Have you bought the right device? Not Sunn? or Sunbeam? Or even Sunkist?(TAS reviewed late '96 and '99) Please think before speak! :)

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2001

Price Paid:    $1800.00

Purchased At:   online



Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Frankie a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: June 24, 2001

Bottom Line:   
This is a review for both the stereo and 5-channel Sunfire.
It makes bad sound. It doesn't make music. Low output, lots of hum. I can't go into control, speed, detail, musicality,
presence, soundstaging or layering, because it doesn't do any of those things. Not even if you put an Audio Research
Ref.1 or a Levinson in front of it. Sad but true, move on.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995



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

Date Reviewed: February 9, 2001

Bottom Line:   
I have to amend my previous posting! The review I gave was for the 600 WATT STEREO AMPLIFIER - Which is in fact the ONLY "SIGNATURE" VERSION of this Sunfire stereo amp - The standard version is 300 watts per channel as it states above - and it may well sound great in a vertical bi-wire, mono configuration also.

BUT TO ACHIEVE THE RESULTS I EXPERIENCED, BE CERTAIN YOU ARE LISTENING TO THE REAL "SIGNATURE" VERSION!!!! 2x600 WATTS!!!!

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000

Purchased At:   Sound Factor Encino




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