Anyone experienced the Luxman MQ-300 or/and The Air Tight ATM-300R?

Considering one of those 2 to drive Devore Super 9 in a 14X16 living room..
Any thoughts?
Both of these 300b SET amplifiers are very highly regarded and receive universal praise. It does seem though that the Luxman MQ 300 gets exceptionally high compliments and admiration. It is a top tier effort from Luxman who seem to have gone all out to make it a state of the art SET. People who have actually heard it say it’s outstanding. I have no reason to question this and I suspect it is truly special. Good luck to you in your search.

Is the Devore Super 9 sensitive and efficient enough for these 8 watt SET amplifiers to fully demostrate their considerable capabilities?
I looked up the speaker’s specifications and sensitivity is 91db and impedance load is 8 ohms with a minimum of 6 ohms. So sensitivity is really  on the fringe  borderline. The speaker load is a relatively easy one. Room is 14 x 16ft .

If the OP is really interested in using a SET amplifier I’d suggest considering a good quality 845 ,805 or 211 output tube based amplifier. In the Dagogo review by the "Beatnik" he used four amplifiers and said that the best sound was achieved with his First Watt S.I.T. 3 which is an 18 watt solid state amplifier.

The above mentioned/recommended tubes will provide typically 20 to 30 watts (845 And 211). The 805 tube will yield 40 to 45 watts as an SET. Of course with these SETs the quality of the output transformer and power supply are major factors to recognize.

Back to the OP’s question, I believe he’d need to hear the two esteemed 300b SETs with his speaker (Or one with very similar specifications ) to determine if the pairing is feasible. I'm a 300b aficianodo but in this circumstance the bigger higher power  transmission output tubes may be more suitable. 
Thanks ! I think it would probably be worth the try as I am using a MQ 88 U se right now and I rarely push my pre pass 9 o’clock .
Your current amplifier is a 25 watt push pull circuit. So probably about 4 or 5 db more than the 8 watt MQ-300. If you’re listening at your typical SPLs with the volume control (VC) at the 9 o’clock position it suggests that there’re is excessive gain in your system. You would want to utilize much more range with the VC.

Interesting the 8 watt MQ-300 is nearly double the weight of the MQ 88C!! This certainly tells you something about the size (And presumably quality) of the transformers and power supply section. As I noted yesterday the Luxman MQ-300 seems to be an all out effort premium tier  SET amplifier. 

What are your typical listening levels in your 14 x 16 ft Room? You have nothing to lose with an audition with your speakers. This would settle the matter one way or the other. 
Well, given your listening levels and room size who knows? The pairing could ’possibly’ meet your needs/expectations. . It will be interesting to see how your current Luxman compares to the MQ-300 and or the AirTight SETs.
Yes. I love the system I have right now. I used to be all shindo amp/pre and switched recently.
For a speaker with as low sensitivity as the Devore Super 9, you might want to look at the Art Audio Elise.  It is 16w (double that of the Luxman or Air Tight) and uses a 520B which is a 300B derivative from Emission Labs and very similar to the old KR VV 52B.  

It is a wonderful sounding amp with lush mids and better bass than you could expect from a SET.  This unit replaced the Jota in the Art Audio lineup and is the amp in my profile photo.  

A 520B based unit will be much closer to the sound profile of a 300B than an 845 or 211 will be.  The other option would be to look at a 300B parallel SET like the Art Audio Argento but then you are running four 300Bs which can be brutally expensive to maintain longer term.  

I am sure there are other 520B based units or other 300B parallel SETs which may solve your issue.  I just don't know them off hand.  

Full disclosure, I am the importer for Art Audio. I am pointing these units out because they solve the marginal challenge you are facing in terms of power.  We have plenty of 3rd party review of our amps at a variety of sites.  

Good luck! 
My dealer just received the Luxman CL-1000 Preamp and had it hooked up to the MB-300 amp. Great pure analog sound. Wish I had 36K for the combo.
I have heard both.

I was on a similar quest earlier this year (see my post) asking a similar question. I was looking to run them on Devore O/96

I heard the Air Tight ATM-300R on a 87dB speaker (I don't know what the dealer was thinking while setting it up!!!) and the MQ-300 on a 90ish dB Triangle speaker.

Both on completely different systems so hard to compare. 

But I loved the MQ-300, it is by far the best amp I have heard. Although I agree that you should look for higher powered amps, both of these amps might drive your speakers. 

I wish I had heard the ATM-300R on a more efficient speaker to get a proper handle on its capabilities, but the fact that it drove an 87dB speaker was in itself a feat.

Definitely get the MQ-300, then someday upgrade to the Orangutans ;)

Thanks everyone. I’ll probably hear the LUXMAN in my system soon and I have the feeling It will work.

Let us know your listening impressions if you don’t mind. Would like to know  how you find its music reproduction compared to the Luxman KT 88 push pull amplifier you are currently using with this 91 db sensitive speaker..


I finally got one in my system and first impressions are pretty fantastic. Power is actually much more than enough. I actually don’t hear a difference of volume/power when compared to the KT-88 weirdly.
I have been listening to all kind of music since yesterday and can’t detect any flaws or limitations . I had 300B amp before including the little Sophia’s with the Royals but nothing compare to it. Just great.
Hi h_bomb,
You’ve confirmed something I’ve written numerous times on this forum, you just have to audition audio components and listen for yourself. What satisfies one listener may not satisfy another. Simply too many personal taste/preference factors involved. I’m glad for you that the Luxman 300b SET and your Devore speakers have resulted in such a successful pairing for your needs and desires. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

"Little Sophia"  300b SET vs the Luxman SET, no doubt that power supplies and output  transformers differences are a major factor favoring the Luxman amplifier. The Luxman is probably 2 or 2.5x heavier.
Thanks Charles, you are totally right about trying in your own set-up . What is really a surprise for me is that it is actually much more powerful than I thought. 
I can understand your preference for the 300b compared to the KT 88 amp you currently have. The KT 88 is a very good sounding tube if well implemented. However IMO a well implemented 300b is quite formidable and alluring 😊. I was a happy owner of a KT 88/6550 push pull amplifier. Once I got my 300b SET thers was no going back. That was 10 years ago. I believe that you will enjoy your Luxman SET amplifier for many years.
There’s no replacement for displacement they say. The MQ-300 has transformers that weigh a ton in comparison. It’s a wonderfully beefy 8wpc. I know from experience. I had no doubt it would work in his situation. 
I’m so happy he is experiencing that awesome amp. 
Enjoy it in great health!
I actually think they are 2 superb superbs amplifiers and I might keep both. The 300 though has a built I had never seen before though. It is really a statement product. 
Thank you for your update and confirming my suspicions that the MQ-300 is one of the best out there.

Yes, the build quality is quite out of this world. Pictures do not do it any justice.
Hi Essrand,
what is your system right now? I saw the posts about your amp quest but I do not know what you ended up choosing.
We distributed the Luxman brand for 10 years as a stocking distributor for N. America.  We have been using our personal MQ-88 to drive different models of our Graham Audio speakers that we import.  The mid-range is superb with beautiful vocals.  We have an ex demo MQ-300 we just listed for sale here.  Don't let the 8 watts spec put you off.  This beast is quiet, sweet with great separation, big soundstage, addictive vocals and has terrific bass.  Absolute music enjoyment unadulterated.   
So you listed your Used 5-6 year old Demo for over 15K. Thats more than what the FULL MSRP was when you got it.  WHAT A DEAL!!!  Do your homework people. No wonder Luxman took away the line and gave it to somebody else to distribute who promptly dropped the price of all the TOTL gear by $5000 each.
It is. Which means you can buy a brand new one for 14-16k If you have a good relationship with a Lux dealer.....or you can buy the 5-6 Year old one for the same price. (And it might be older than that as he lost the line YEARS ago)
MSRP is higher than $20k and used to be closer to $30k. 

And you can’t buy new Lux at 30 off no matter what price. Good luck trying though. 

Hi Keith,
I just saw your system. Do you  still have the Bardo?
Also the max rebate for Luxman is around 15%..

Best to audition both amps before purchase. 8 watts/ch is only going to go so far...and that is assuming that your speaker even has a mild impedance character across the board! 
Friend of mine has so called 'efficient' speakers--rated at 95db...yet these same monsters drop down to a 1 ohm load in the bass. So, he was surprised that the system sounded thin and a little veiled...
Just like JVS of Stereophile fame who was surprised at the results he ineptly got when he matched the Jadis JA200Mk2 amps up with his original Wilson Alexia's...duh!


I can get 30% off Luxman from 3 different dealers. Ive never gotten less than 20% for any brand and I have well over 200K worth of gear. You have to know how to shop I guess.


Sorry I saw your question just now.

I went with the Nagra 300p that I found at a very attractive price in the used market.

I still believe the Luxman MQ-300 to be a far better sounding amp, but I wanted to see what a 20W push-pull would do for my system compared to a 8W SET (I have one already, so can compare).

But while auditioning in NYC I came across an integrated amp that I believe would be my endgame amp, which is what I am saving up for, want to get it sometime later this year. It did things to my music that I never heard an amp do. The Engstrom Arne.

I first read about it in the audioexotics forum, and after  listening to it I understood what those guys in that forum meant by the term "super high-end".
I have never heard of it but just googled it.
i am sure it sounds fantastic. Where have you demoed it?

I demoed it at Innovation Audio in NYC. The owner (I think) Elliot is a great guy and fantastic host and a knowledgeable audiophile.

Joining this late, but...I bought the MQ-300 last September, and with my Luxman C-900u preamp and D-06 SACD player with Tannoy Stirling GR speakers in my tiny Japanese condo, I have to say it sounds pretty sweet. The vocals are to die for. I put on the Tony Bennett/Bill Evans album, and man, I swear Tony was in the room. The 300B Takatsuki tubes are really extraordinary--but boy, they will be expensive to replace when they finally give up the ghost.

I went for Luxman since I live in Japan, so the price is lower, and domestically at least, their customer service is excellent. 
Great thread.  Not surprised the Luxman works and sounds great in the room.  I have a very inefficient speaker in a 11 x 12 room and run two amps, a 2a3 push pull 12 watts and a 7 watt integrated .  The 2a3 sounds like a muscle amp and the el84 integrated sounds sweet but runs out of juice at high volume.  Both sound incredible.
Please do let me know if you ever get a chance to audition the Engstrom Arne. Would love to hear your opinion of it vs the MQ-300.

I found it better than MQ-300 in some respects but the MQ-300 to be a better all round performer.

But the catch was that the Arne I auditioned was not broken in. It was brand new from the box, perhaps that's why it wasn't as relaxed as the Luxman. But I don't know.
No matter how good the Engsrom Arne sounds "brand new from the box".  IMO there’s no question that it will improve as hours of use begin to accumulate . It will most certainly relax and open up . This has been my experience with new amplifiers and especially those utilizing output transformers.

I suspect that both of these amplifiers are outstanding across the spectrum. The Engstrom representing uber level 300b sound quality in push pull configuration and the Luxman doing the same in SET configuration. I don’t see how one could not be absolutely thrilled with either driving an appropriately chosen speaker.
I haven’t have the time to even contact the store and I am truly happy with the configuration I have now. To be able to test the 2 would need to hear them with the exact same configuration which is complicated. At the end I’ll have maybe to sell all amp/pre as I am thinking of moving back to Europe..
No need to test. Just listen at the store, if you are free sometime, would love to know what you think.