Richard from New Zealand has assembled his ultimate home theatre audio system using Perreaux amplifiers and preamps – including two of our reference Prisma 350 stereo power amps and a 6160 six-channel power amp, along with the Prisma SM6 MkII and Audiant DP32 preamps and our Prisma CD1 CD player.
I'll let Richard explain his audio system in his own words...
“Forget attacks in the dark or subtleties or nuances. The reason why I went down the Perreaux path was completely all about the sound. The first time I ever heard a 350 was when I went to audition some JBL Ti-10ks that I saw on Trademe just over a year ago. The seller had bi-wired them with a couple of Accuphase power amps controlling the mids and trebles and the 350 was controlling the woofers. And when I say control I mean full on domination. Grip beyond anything I had ever seen or heard. Normally an amp will have a speaker on a leash but these appeared to be physically joined at the hip. I knew at that moment that my other amps were about to be given the cold shoulder.
“The sound from the 350 is brutally honest. It is simply a gain on a wire, all it should be and all I wanted. The amp doesn’t run particularly hot, it has the basics you would expect including remote on triggers, sturdy connectors and weighs in around 30kg shipping on a wooden base to protect it in transit.
“Over the course of the next 12 months or so I ended up with 2x 350 with each of them responsible for delivering 350 watts RMS into each of the 4 Cerwin Vega XLS-215 that I am running in my cinema room. To run the centre and rears I am using a 6160 in bridge mode which is delivering 485 watts RMS into 1 Cerwin Vega CLS-215 and 2 Cerwin Vega VS120 in the rear. The 6160 has to be throttled back using the RSP-1098 preamp and this appeared to be the most cost effective way of obtaining 5 channels of Perreaux amplification whilst using the Rotel to do the decoding and passing it through the SM6 MkII preamp which is put into HT pass through when watching a movie.
“When listening to CDs using the CD1 I run these directly into the SM6 MkII or if listening to FLAC or MP3 from my home theatre PC I run direct from the USB on the home theatre PC into the Perreaux Audiant DP32 DAC which supplies both the SM6 MkII and the rest of the house (with multiple amps and preamps throughout other rooms!) This works well as I can control my Winamp on the home theatre PC with a handy app on my ipad or iphone called 'Wmote' which works a treat.
“So how does it sound? Pretty damn good. Sitting in a leather recliner and watching a concert is nothing short of 'better than being there.' It is not uncommon for the hairs on the back of your neck to stand upright when watching an action movie as you are totally and utterly engrossed in the atmosphere. Other times when listening to music the bass has physically broken things such as the remote receiver for my RF controlled lighting system which I had mounted onto a structural beam in the ceiling that takes a walloping at times from the 10x 15” subwoofers in the front of house.
“And how does it feel? Well the power can be somewhat overwhelming if left unchecked. At low volumes the system is fantastic, at high volumes the system is dangerous as it doesn’t distort as it would in a cheaper system. In fact sometimes you don’t even realise just how loud it is as it is so incredibly clear and it isn’t until you go to try and speak or someone else tries to speak to you that you have any idea just how loud it is. In my opinion there are not many investments in your life that you can simply buy and hold and enjoy and not have an ongoing cost associated with the enjoyment factor. For me – HiFi – is exactly that being a one off purchase that can be enjoyed on-going on a daily basis. The trick is, I guess, to find a point where you can say 'enough I have reached my peak – no more – no additional – no upgrades'. If you know how to do this be sure to let me know!!!”
Feel free to contact Richard directly if you would like to know more about his system and his journey with Perreaux.
You can find more information about the Perreaux products Richard has used in his system on their respective product pages: Prisma 350 Stereo Power Amp, 6160 Multi-Channel Power Amp, SM6 MkII Balanced Preamp, CD1 CD Player and Audiant DP32 USB DAC Preamp.