I just finished the final placement of my 803's
I still currently own and have for sale the B&W804S speakers that are powered but Bob Latino's m125 mono-blocks.
While on my search for THAT speaker I asked Pat (salesman) if I could have a demonstration with the 803's using a tube amplifier. I also requested that the amplifier did not have a$10,000 price tag. Knowing this particular store sells McIntosh I wanted an amplifier that was at least in price comparison with the m125. I realize there is more to compare like performance, efficiency, reliability, and durability but I started with price and also handling power.
I arrived at the store with the 803Diamonds connected to the Prima Luna dialogue HP integrated amplifier. The Prima Luna has an exclusive Adaptive Auto Bias which to me is a nice touch. Honestly, it is a great feature. The output tubes were FOUR KT 120. In triode mode 45watts per channel.
For my taste the appearance of the Prima Luna did not grab me and the build quality compared to the m125 IMHO, could not hold a candle next to Bob Latino's heavy gauge brush nickel chassis. Durability of the PL did not appear to be as substantial as the m125.
A feature I did like is the 4&8 ohm taps that are available and ready to go at a flip of a switch.
The power handling of the 804S speaker is 50-200watts, compared to the 803D 50-500watts.
As mentioned the PL was producing 45watts into each channel and the 803's sounded sweet.
I was asked what amplifiers I intended to use and I informed (Pat)about Bob Latino's m125. The salesman was surprise and very impressed with the m125's construct and power capability since I also forwarded him the TUBES4HIFI website.
He did think in his opinion I should run FOUR outputs since TWO only yield 35 watts in triode. I responded that both the 804 S and the 803D minimum power handing capabilities are the same...50watts.
Today I picked up the 803diamonds and had my in home audition, using the m125's in triode mode with (2/KT 88's).
I placed the 803's in the exact same speaker footprint as the 804S. Speaker placement is imperative to acquire a three dimensional experience and good soundstage. The placement of the speakers was a guess based on the 804's, I thought I could get lucky even though the 803's have that extra driver and a diamond headed tweeter.
I was right and the music flowed. The depth with these 803's is more noticeable and the voices of the artists as well as instruments more lifelike.
I cannot say that I did not have a similar experience with the 804's, I did but this is BETTER!
The 803's have a lot of breaking in to do and I am not complaining I have the time. Reliving my music over again a second time. First with the m125's and the Grace m920 and now with a beautiful pair of B&W 803 diamond speakers.
Diamonds are forever!
Just wanted to share.
Sent from my iPad
Sent from my iPad