Looking for an Amp Replacement

I am in need of advice and direction on replacing my ML 23.5 amp. While replacing the power caps a cap on the output board was damaged and is no longer available. The most viable right now option is to start looking for a replacement amp and to complete repair down the road or scrap it... (was purchased used maybe 10 years ago)

It is for a second system that is mainly used for background and light listening to streamed/internet radio and the occasional CD and playback from NAS storage using JRiver.

Currently have pulled my Perreaux 3150 out of retirement and have been using that with acceptable results. Looking at a used amp for better bang for the buck return in the 150-200wpc and a budget of 2-3k+/-

Rest of system comprises of

ARC ls28, PSA DSD, Magnum Dynalab 801, Shahinian Acoustics Obelisk, Sony XA5400es CD  

I liked the sound I was able to get from this set up with the ML, but have a bad experience with a 333 in main system a while back and as such I do not have a lot of faith in their newer gear.

While not expecting someone to have identical components, would like to hear from tube/ss combos people as I am using this in three systems and really like the overall sound.


I’d try a Benchmark Media Systems ABH-2. They can drive anything, are made in Syracuse, NY, and have great service although their equipment has very little need for such. Please consider using their cables also. (I believe Blue Jeans Cables make a similar Quad Core cable.) Maybe you can sell off the expensive cables you have now.

For service on your Levinson amp you should contact Mark Weiss at Amplifier Experts in New Milford, CT.



The original Parasound A21 is excellent, and on balance, as good as some amps costing twice its original retail. 

For back ground music/lower volumes all of these amps will sound exactly the same.  Seriously, you will not be able to pick them apart blind with any statistically significant confidence.  The lowest cost suggestion is the one you should go with.  Personally I'd look for a Linn Classik which has a built in CD player and enough inputs to meet your needs.  The Classik goes for around $250-400 and if you sold the Sony CD player (1k) ARC Preamp (5k), PS DAC (500), and the Perreaux ($600) you'd have a net credit around $6500 give or take and a lot less clutter.

If you don't believe me pick up the Linn and do a blind A/B comparison with your current system using the Perreaux at the listening levels you intended.  Have non-audiophile frends and family weigh in if possible, as it may be difficult for you to set aside your expectation bias.