Purifi v Gan amps?

Has anyone had the opportunity to compare Purifi based amps eg MarchP422, Purifi etc with Gan amps such as LSA Voyager or Peachtree Gan 400 or similar?


It was impossible to audition GAN amps in Australia and the only Purifi amps available were the March range, also difficult to audition as I was unable to attend his Sydney presentation. So I had to go on 3rd party reviews. I found Alan March too inflexible as he was unwilling to instal a different op amp. I was tempted by the Orchard but the outlay was a little more than I was prepared to pay for an unheard amp. I eventually settled for an amp from Nord Audio from the UK. It was a dual mono unit with 2 Purifi modules and offered a choice of op amps as well as other minor options. I went for the latest Sparkos op amp option based on some reviews indicating that they were more tube like in SQ (tube like not sounding like tubes). To say I was delighted would be an understatement. With my Aesthetix Calypso tube pre the results were exactly the same as those experienced by carcopo, even without the BACCH gear, which I have to admit I don't understand. Soundstage, dynamics and imaging were excellent and presentation was clear, holographic and smooth. It didn't gloss over poor recordings, rather the deficiencies were more noticeable but well recorded material was superb. What more could you want from a power amp? As an added bonus it was readily portable unlike the 30kg + behemoths I had been used to, a not unsubstantial bonus for someone my age. Negatives - only one minor criticism. IMHO the case design was uninspiring, just another black (or silver) box with striations on the sides, possibly pretending to be heat sinks, which it doesn't need as it runs cold after 6 hours +.  Orchard Gan amps and other Gan amps are something to consider for the future, after further developments, but only if it is possible to audition them in Australia, as at present I feel it would be difficult to better the Nord Purifi amp at anywhere near a comparable price.

Reviving this old thread. I am looking for 3 channels of high quality sound for Home Theater to power Andrew Jones’ forgotten orphan, the Elac Adante bookshelves. ( left, right and dedicated center).

I just ordered 3 mono block GAN amps from classDaudio but have also read some very positive things about the purifi module amps.

I’m not as serious about HT as I am 2 channel, (I have a separate system in the same room that just shares the subs and Niagara power conditioner) but am seeking good sound for a modest sum.

Has anyone heard the the new CLassDaudio monoblocks? I was thinking of running long XLR’s and 2-3 foot speaker cables for each speaker.

I have owned the Peachtree GAN1 that is modded. I am keeping this one since it is amazing. More comments on this in a few months. I will be doing something special with this amp. It is so good that it gets the first crack at some new gear.

I owned the Peachtree GAN400 2 times. Both times while I was debating what amp to use with the Magnepan LRS+. The GAN400 had enough power for the LRS+ but it was lacking the ultimate resolution on the top end.

The PeachTree GAN1 is similar in stock form to the GAN400, minus the strong power. However, if you mod the GAN1 you take it into CODA #16 amp and Benchmark AHB2 levels. Not power wise but resolution. I have the #16 too so this is real-world experience.

I also owned the LSA Voyager 350 GAN which was also modded. It was not as good as the modded GAN1. Both mods were done by Ric at tweakaudio.com. The Voyager 350 was similar to the GAN400 but weaker in the bass.

At one time I have owned the Benchmark AHB2 (5X). It is supposed to be like the Purifi. A lot of reviews compare the 2. However, I no longer own the AHB2 since my prior speakers and also my current office speaker demands more power than what I felt the AHB2 could deliver. The modded GAN1 is almost as good (maybe as good) on the top end as the AHB2. I love the top end on the AHB2. In stock form, the GAN1 is not as good.

Today I have found an amp that I like better than the GAN400, Voyager, and even the AHB2 in most respects. It is the Sanders Magtech. I got this amp used from Sanders themselves for $4k. It is a Class AB amp, which I have had a lot, and I am surprised I like this amp so much. The power supply on the Sanders is said to be unique and I think CODA builds the amp for Sanders.

Last night I was listening to the LRS+ (very difficult to drive) with the Magtech and played the music at very low volume. This was late at night, and I normally use my headphones. However, I was amazed at how well the speakers sounded at low volume. That is a testament to the Sanders. Given a proper amp - speaker match only my CODA #16 and my old AHB2 were as good at low volume. Most amps are terrible at this.

Using the Sanders, at regular volume levels the sound just explodes out of the LRS+. The GAN amps I mentioned never did that, even the GAN400 that came close. The CODA #16 is even better than the Sanders at this (more bass).

The best amps I have owned.

  • CODA #16
  • PeachTree GAN1 (has to be modded)
  • Sanders MagTech
  • KRELL Duo 175XD*
  • Benchmark AHB2*

There are about 5+ Class D amps I have tried plus many other Class AB amps. None of them are with me and not missed. I miss the AHB2 and the KRELL which I sold to generate some funds.

^As I understand it the Magtech is basically a fully regulated Coda with more output at the expense of less intial Class A bias. For many users it appears that the improvements and  trade offs make for a better amp. It would appear that perhaps even more so than usual; choice of speakers will determine how advantageous these design choices will be.