Cary Audio Design CAD 805C Monoblock Amplifiers

CAD 805C Monoblock

  • Rated power output: 50 watts rms
  • Frequency response: 10-40 kHz +/- 1 dB
  • Rated input sensitivity: 1 volt
  • Input impedance: 150 k Ohms

User Reviews (9)

Showing 1-9 of 9  
Pantophil   AudioPhile [Oct 07, 2003]
Strength:

Palpability and naturalness and immediacy, great imaging, tons of detail.

Weakness:

Bass a little soft with certain speakers, but this can be eliminated by replacing the stock driver tubes and using the right power cords (Elrod EPS 3 work great for me).

These amps are amazing: rich and liquid midrange, excellent tonal satration, very natural and lifelike midrange. The palpability of female vocals has to be heard to be believed. These amps are tonally rich but never overly sweet. Actually the extension and detail in the treble is very very good. Very deep and wide, enveloping soundstage. The bass is pretty good too especially with Sylvania 6sl7's (much tighter than with the stock 6sl7's). These amps can drive my Watt/Puppies 6's with no sweat.

Similar Products Used: VAC 70/70, CJ Premier 12.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Steve None   AudioPhile [Mar 14, 2002]
Strength:

Great SET Transparancy

Weakness:

Are you Kidding " NONE"

I''ve lived with the Cary 805-C amps going on four years now and have a very good understanding of there sound. This amp I know is still one of the greatest if not the greatest amps of all time period!! It has the most opened and fullest sound you can get. Its so transparent from top to bottom, and I do mean it breathes transparency like no other amp can. Its a great communicator of the music in which it plays and if you can''t hear it then I can assure you, you have problems further up the chain in your system. I will never sell mine because I know you can''t do any better than these. This amp will become a classic in time and will go down in history as one of the greatest musical amps there is!! Dennis Had is the "KING OF AUDIO" period..

Similar Products Used: I''ve tried them all and none come close to the Cary 805-C amps!!
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Rob   Audiophile [Oct 11, 2000]
Strength:

extraordinarily transparent with excellent timbral quality

Weakness:

50 watts will only go so far! But man oh man they're 50 great watts

I don't often do reviews but this product just demands recognition. I don't care that its not some garage built arcane mystery machine built by stuttering technogeeks. The sounds that come from this device are so fluid, transparent and dynamic I just can't ever go back to SS. I don't care if this isn't the "fastest" or "truest" device. It puts out MUSIC and that's what I'm pursuing when I listen to Miles, Trane, DADA, Evans, whatever. Build quality is beyond reproach. A dream machine.

Similar Products Used: VTL-225 Delux Mono's; Cary SLAM-100's; Sonic Frontiers Power 1
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Eric Chan   Audiophile [Sep 26, 2001]
Strength:

Very attractive look, Wonderful, natural and 3 dimensional Midrange, pretty good and extended high

Weakness:

Very weak Bass control & definition, overall speed, a little grainy on high, very pricy !!

I bought the brand new 805B in 1995 based on all the good comments heard, its look & the theory(some gimmick such as some beautiful terms like single-ended, interstage transfomer coupling, oil-filled caps, Class-A amp etc..)employed in this amp. I guess all other owners would at least have one of the above impressions when they decided to buy this amp.

The Cary 805 was originally designed for the use of 805 tube which could give you nearly 50 watts of undistrored power. When 211(805B) & 845(805C) were employed it can only produce approximately 30 watts of undistroed power under the measure of an osciliscope.

In fact, 30 watts for an amp can still perform very good through out the full frequency range(for example ARC classic 30). However the Cary 805 really lacks bass control and bass definition. I have heard some other SE amps that could produce reasonably good bass definition.

If you can get rid of all the non-related factors of sonic performance(such as 1.beautiful appearance 2.gimmick technical terms 3.good comments that somebody said). Trust yourself! Go to compare with the other tube amps side by side. There are many other tube amps in the market can perform similar in 805's mid and high but much much articulate on bass and overall dynamic with much less money.

Being an audiophile, we need to have sonic resolution in all the respects, not its look or gimmick terms.

For the parts used(not the sound) in Cary 805, I can still give 3 stars for its value rating. For sound vs. price, it only earns 2.

Without regards to price, it holds 3 stars.

Similar Products Used: Many - including 7 different brand of 300B & 845 amps, all model in ARC classic series, VTL, SF, Golden tube etc.
OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
2
gjgoldy   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 23, 2001]
Strength:

True musical sound that is accurate.

Weakness:

size and heat given off, but nothing in the way of sound

I have no idea what amps the person below used, but either he has some bad tubes, which is always possible, or the problem is in his other equipment, in my opinion. The 805C amps in my house neither lack bass nor have any grain in the high end, or any place else, and every professional review I have since read supports my findings. They sound beautiful with music, from symphony, to voice, to rock sounding as real as is possible. I know guitar and piano first hand. What I hear with the 805c is exactly that. The notes are perfect with very good imaging and liquidity that only a few other amps can match. They are never over detailed to the point of sounding unreal, but just to the point of saying , “I feel like I am in the fifth row center, ” and that is exactly right.

If you are looking for dynamics that aren't there in real life, they aren't here either. This is wonderful sound that is conservatively rated at 50 w / ch. Yes, maybe they are a little overdone in looks and bells and whistles, and maybe they are heavy, and maybe would sound even better if you used Western Electric or NOS tubes, but the music is what counts and it is there, as real as it could be, many times over. Pure and simple this is very definitely a monoblock amp worth auditioning if you have the space, money and love ... I mean really love music.

Kimber Kable throughout
BAT VK30se pre-amp
JMLab Mini Utopias
BAT VK-D5
VPI turntable
Rotel tuner

The overall rating has to be 5 stars. The value can not be marked down either. You get what you pay for, and maybe even more.

Similar Products Used: Carry 300M, VTL, Classe, Krell, and a host of other tube and solidstate amps
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Ed   Audiophile [Feb 16, 2001]
Strength:

Soundstage, naturalness of sound

Weakness:

bass control, output power, heat

I have heard amps that have played louder, I have heard amps with better bass control, but I have not heard amps that have sounded better than the Cary's in my listening room. Wonderful deep and wide soundstage, and very natural sound. But there also seems to be something else going on when I listen to these amps, its a "monkey brain" kinda thing, like good food, drink, or the embrace of a woman, it is something that I want more of.

Thats an effect I have not heard with solid state or other tube gear I have listened to. Now, to be fair, I just got the amps, and they have not even broken in as yet, as I can hear improvements in their sound over time, they are becomming smoother, better bass line and such. But they still sound very, very good. I will try to write some more when I have a chance to listen to them more. But for now, they are big, they are expensive, they run hot, they are very retro in appearance, but I think I am in love, or at least in lust with what they do to the music. I definately recommend you at least listen to them if you can.

Similar Products Used: Pass Labs, Herron, Bryston, Jolida, Theta, EAD, ARC, others
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Ray   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 18, 1999]
Strength:

Good tight low end, very sweet midrange, lots of SET power, chassis design, american made, extraordinary soundstage.

Weakness:

Doesn't drive low impedance, ineffiecient speakers

Hands down the 805c's sound the best. My set up is Cary SLP-50a preamp, 805c mono blocks, Cary CD-300 cd player, Audio Note turn table, Nordost Red dawn and blue heaven interconnects, Nordost BLue heaven bi-wire speaker wires, Joseph Audio RM50si Speakers, Lightspeed powerline filter on a dedicated 20 amp circuit(120 volts).

This combination is simply awesome. I was at HIFI99 and only 2 rooms came close to sounding as good... Joseph Audio/VTL and Cary Audio/Soliloquy

Any questions please e-mail me
mrrjm@mediaone.net

Similar Products Used: Cary CAD 300SEI/LX20, CAD 300 SE/LX20 mono blocks, CAD 50M MkII Mono blks, SLM-100 Mono blks,
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Steve Audiophile   Audiophile [May 20, 2000]
Strength:

Solid build quality,great set transparentcy,works well with many speakers.

Weakness:

Its really hard to come up with a weakness with one of the greatest amplifiers of all time!!If not the GREATEST!!

The Cary 805's are truly one of the greatest amplifiers of all time. There sound is so beautiful and transparent, that every time I hear them they just put the performer on stage and let you hear music like you've never heard before.I've read reviews where the amps are a little soft at the frequency extremes." HOG WASH " These great amps give top to bottom coherency. Clean out your ears so you can hear it! These amps along with the 300 SE's are the two "GREATEST AMPS' ever made period. You buy any of these two great amps and the amplifier buying game is over with. Congradulations you've just heard the final "HOLY GRAIL". You can stop now and just sit back and hear your system do things you wanted it to, but couldn't because you didn't have these to GREATS.One other thing. Dennis Had is the "KING OF AUDIO" bar none. You heard it hear first!! Steve

Similar Products Used: Audio Rearch,Conrad Johnson,VTL,Bat,Sonic Frontiers,Pass Labs,Mark Levinson,Krell,and many others
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-9 of 9  

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