I’m really happy with my system. However when a technician, who is also a salesman, came to my house for a stereo repair he complimented my set but said it would sound a lot better if I switched out my Benchmark AHB2 amp (which I think is great) for a Pass 30 wpc class AB amp. He offered to let me hear that amp in my system so that I could decide for myself (at a fee of $300.) The only problem is he doesn’t  have the 30 watt amp in stock but would have to demo the Pass sound with 60 watt monoblocks. He assured  me that with my very efficient GoldenEar Triton 1 speakers the 30 watt amp will almost have the the same quality.

Do you think I can honestly judge how the smaller amp will actually sound? Or should I cancel the demonstration (and save$300?)


I know I posted on this thread but cannot find my post and I do not recall deleting it at all. Anyway, as this thread continues, it is apparent the great differences of opinion. Two expensive and heavy 100 lb amplifiers delivered, set up, evaluation time given, and then the reverse. Come pick them up and reconnect the 13 pounder. The store owner is paying someone to do this, or he is doing this himself. Either way, it is a cost to the store owner, in money and time. It is also presenting the possibility of something happening to the mono blocks, as a scratch/dent can occur. This is no different than buying an amplifier with a 10-15 % restocking fee’. It is truly an individual decision, as there is no right or wrong. In my original post, I did indicate it was not fair with the mono blocks being sent, pretending they would mirror the single chassis amp. Not happening, although you must consider rvpiano's speakers have powered low frequency drivers, so any amp will not work as hard as driving full range. I went to people’s homes for years, as my expertise was invited to discuss improvements and upgrades. I did collect a consultation fee, which was discussed in advance. As I was not a dealer (but did business with dealers), my time was valuable. This was and still is, the way it is (not specifically me, as I am retired). As a consumer you either participate or you don’t. I rotate power amplifiers like people rotate socks, so they are an important ingredient to the presentation I am looking for. Just my 2cents. Enjoy ! MrD.

The hardest thing is knowing when to say you are done, your system sounds great, etc.  This is a site that caters to people who always want to experiment and tinker and check out the grass on the other side of the fence.  There is nothing wrong with that, and it’s great that they (we) have a site or two to mix in.  It isn’t however the place to ask “I love my system, it’s perfect, but what should I change?” and expect to get many people telling you to stay put


I reversed course and bit for the $300 demonstration.  I have the whole weekend to listen and decide.  If it doesn’t make my system sound significantly better I will happily return the demo amps without feeling any obligation.  Since I can afford the $300 it is not a hardship for me to satisfy my curiosity.  As some have pointed out, to lug 90 lb. amps over, set them up and lug them back is certainly worth something.  And if I buy, the money will go towards the purchase price.  
The only caveat is that I won’t be hearing the exact same thing that I’m buying.  But I’m reassured that the sound will be very close, and to me it’s worth the gamble.  
 They are coming to install momentarily. I’ll report back as to the results.


Well, the Pass is definitely an improvement over the Benchmark.  I just have to decide if it’s enough of an improvement to justify the expense.