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Pass Labs 20 Years and Counting

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  #1  
Old 03-13-2016, 05:29 PM
jpspock jpspock is online now
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Default From pass xa100.5 to xa160.5

After 5 years with the pass xa100.5, I finally upgrade to the xa160.5. It was a challenge as i never hear them before, and it seems to be a winning deal.

Now, for all owners of those marvelous amps, can you tell me the time it will take before they will broken in and what are the main evolutions I can expect?

Many thanks for your help..
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WA Sasha , Pass XA160.5, DCS Rossini, clock scarlattti,ARC REF5SE
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  #2  
Old 03-14-2016, 07:17 AM
bds bds is offline
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Hello,

you have found again a pair of Xa160.5 new?

I use the Sasha2 with the Xa100.8 and before I had the 100.5.

well Pass make a very great amplifier....sure the 160 is a step up from the 100 but at the end with the Sasha i'm happy...

the pre ARC is loved but I dont like so much....i had a ref5se for 6 months...sold....maybe I try again with the ref6 but a Xp20 or 30 i like too: Pass ampli and pre is a good combo (sinergy...)

thank you for reply
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  #3  
Old 03-16-2016, 03:37 PM
jpspock jpspock is online now
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Sorry for late answer. Yes it's a new pair, one of the latest if not the latest. With sasha2 you do not need an extra power as they are easier to drive. But i have tob say that the xa160.5 outperforms xa100.5 in everyway. I didn't expect a so big differnce and they are not broken yet.

Concerning preamp, i had the chance to test xp10 and 20 with xa100.5 at home during 2 weeks, but it was not really my cup of tea. Ref5 was more lively, open and 8i prefer to pass preamp.

It can be a question of perception or taste...
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WA Sasha , Pass XA160.5, DCS Rossini, clock scarlattti,ARC REF5SE
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  #4  
Old 03-16-2016, 03:40 PM
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cma29 cma29 is online now
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I'm considering this upgrade as well. I'll keep my eyes on this thread.
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Carlos - Columbia, Missouri, USA

Two-Channel System: Oppo BDP-105D -> WireWorld Silver Starlight 7 HDMI and Coaxial -> Bryston BDA-3 DAC -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 XLR -> Bent Audio Autoformer Volume Control Passive Line Stage -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 XLR -> Pass Labs XA100.5 monoblocks -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 -> Magnepan 20.7s

Power Distribution: Shunyata Research Hydra Cyclops (for XA100.5s) and Shunyata Research Hydra 4 α (for sources)

Power Cables: Shunyata Research Ξtron Cobra (for Cyclops), Shunyata Research Venom-HC (for XA100.5s and Hydra 4 α), WireWorld Silver Electra 7 (for BDA-3)

Tweaks: GIK Acoustics room treatment, HIFI-Tuning Fuses and Cardas Audio Tweeter + Mid-Range Jumpers on 20.7s, Mye Sound Magnepan speaker stands

Other: PS Audio Power Port outlets, Square D Whole House Surge Protective Device, dedicated 20-ampere lines
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  #5  
Old 03-17-2016, 07:05 AM
bds bds is offline
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Quote:
Sorry for late answer. Yes it's a new pair, one of the latest if not the latest. With sasha2 you do not need an extra power as they are easier to drive. But i have tob say that the xa160.5 outperforms xa100.5 in everyway. I didn't expect a so big differnce and they are not broken yet.

Concerning preamp, i had the chance to test xp10 and 20 with xa100.5 at home during 2 weeks, but it was not really my cup of tea. Ref5 was more lively, open and 8i prefer to pass preamp.

It can be a question of perception or taste
Hello,

yes....is personal taste....the ARC is used with Pass from a lot of person but I find ARC without "border" on the LF&HF.....with the tube is sure more "airy" but in place of ARC a Octave sound better....anyway Pass & Pass is for me the best combo.

I have posed the question to have a pair of xa160.5 at the Pass inporter but he say me that are no more available....."if you have lucky a second hand but new can you forget....."

For the pre a XP30 is much better vs XP10/20 that are very similar...

is too true that with Sasha the XA100.8 (or .5) are more as enough...but the XA160 is te best SS amplifier today available.... not Watt but the timbre... -> the XA200.5 is not so good....(IMHO) I can change the Pass with a Dag Stereo new (black) but Pass sound much better...!

If I change my speakers a Magico, Focal or Isophon are the more agree ut PMC is too a very great product!
Pass XA100(.5 or .8) is already enough....


cme29 you think to can have a pair of xa160.5 without problem? (ex demo or fast new...)?
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  #6  
Old 03-17-2016, 10:55 PM
boilerkj boilerkj is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpspock View Post
After 5 years with the pass xa100.5, I finally upgrade to the xa160.5. It was a challenge as i never hear them before, and it seems to be a winning deal.

Now, for all owners of those marvelous amps, can you tell me the time it will take before they will broken in and what are the main evolutions I can expect?

Many thanks for your help..
Keep us posted on your feedback please. I've been considering moving to the .8 series, but I thought it best to jump from the XA100.5 to the XA160.8.

I have the same speakers, and I'll be curious what differences you observe with the power bump.
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PI Audio UberBUSS and DigiBUSS ~ Sonore microRendu w/ UltraCap LPS-1 ~ Roon Nucleus+ ~ Auralic Vega ~ Purity Audio Design Ultra GT ~ Pass Labs XA160.8 ~ Wilson Audio Sasha Series 1 ~ JL Audio Fathom f212 ~ full Wireworld Gold Eclipse 7 cable loom
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  #7  
Old 03-18-2016, 07:20 AM
bds bds is offline
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Helol boilerkj,

I have the Sasha2 with the XA100.8 (before XA100.5)-> Sasha2 with 92db is very easy to drive and 100watt Class A are really enough.

my roon is around 55m2 and I can play music always in class A to 110 Db!!!


Sure a XA160.x have another "sound status" but you have already a tube preampli and for me have a 160.x make not a so big different....

The .5 from Pass have a sound more "tube" = like tube amplifeir but the new .8 are faster, more(better) LF/bass, HF very fine.....

If i can have a pair of XA160.5 I can immagine to change my 100.8 with the .5 but from 100.5 for 160.8 make for me not sense.....

Sasha is not bi wire/bi amp -> a pair of 100.8 for the LF and the 100.5 (or 60.5) for the HF will be very amazing.


where I'm is very very hard found a pir of xa160.5....used ok but i dont wil buy a 160.5 10years old!!!

sell the xa100.8 (1 year old) for 50% and invest a lot of money for the 160.8 make for me really not sense....

I muss decide from a Xp30 or one ARC REF6 or better a Octave HP700 as preampli. (tube or SS)

thxs bds
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  #8  
Old 03-18-2016, 10:19 AM
STC STC is offline
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Hi,
I have tried 100.5, 160.5 and 160.8.
The 160.8 is very much better than 160.5:
more powerful, better control, rock solid sound staging, micro and macro dynamic are also better .......
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  #9  
Old 03-18-2016, 12:00 PM
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cma29 cma29 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bds View Post
Hello,

yes....is personal taste....the ARC is used with Pass from a lot of person but I find ARC without "border" on the LF&HF.....with the tube is sure more "airy" but in place of ARC a Octave sound better....anyway Pass & Pass is for me the best combo.

I have posed the question to have a pair of xa160.5 at the Pass inporter but he say me that are no more available....."if you have lucky a second hand but new can you forget....."

For the pre a XP30 is much better vs XP10/20 that are very similar...

is too true that with Sasha the XA100.8 (or .5) are more as enough...but the XA160 is te best SS amplifier today available.... not Watt but the timbre... -> the XA200.5 is not so good....(IMHO) I can change the Pass with a Dag Stereo new (black) but Pass sound much better...!

If I change my speakers a Magico, Focal or Isophon are the more agree ut PMC is too a very great product!
Pass XA100(.5 or .8) is already enough....


cme29 you think to can have a pair of xa160.5 without problem? (ex demo or fast new...)?
I cannot get new, but I know a dealer that has a stock of units available that are traded in and refurbished by Pass Labs.
__________________
Carlos - Columbia, Missouri, USA

Two-Channel System: Oppo BDP-105D -> WireWorld Silver Starlight 7 HDMI and Coaxial -> Bryston BDA-3 DAC -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 XLR -> Bent Audio Autoformer Volume Control Passive Line Stage -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 XLR -> Pass Labs XA100.5 monoblocks -> WW Silver Eclipse 7 -> Magnepan 20.7s

Power Distribution: Shunyata Research Hydra Cyclops (for XA100.5s) and Shunyata Research Hydra 4 α (for sources)

Power Cables: Shunyata Research Ξtron Cobra (for Cyclops), Shunyata Research Venom-HC (for XA100.5s and Hydra 4 α), WireWorld Silver Electra 7 (for BDA-3)

Tweaks: GIK Acoustics room treatment, HIFI-Tuning Fuses and Cardas Audio Tweeter + Mid-Range Jumpers on 20.7s, Mye Sound Magnepan speaker stands

Other: PS Audio Power Port outlets, Square D Whole House Surge Protective Device, dedicated 20-ampere lines
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  #10  
Old 03-18-2016, 08:55 PM
SlowikPL SlowikPL is offline
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Hi JPSpock,

I'm proud new owner of brand new Pass XA 160.5
I have them now like 2 months and improve they still do. I'm playing those babies 24h during the weekends and like 10 everyday. And I know that they still get little better everyday.

I had a AX 60.8 and here is what I wrote till now about the XA 160.5
I hope someone will read it and it will help to make the decisions better suited to someone's needs.

I was during those 2 days since I purchased the 160.5 hesitate to write something here. Ut I could not brake myself to do it.
First of al from the beginning it was very pleasant sound form 160.5. It sounded little like my pervious XA 60.8 , very good detail. But lifeless and with a little soft Bass. Very like Aleph X DIY amp yet more controlled because I think of the amount of power.
After like 24h the amps ware even more detailed and began have the crispy yet natural presence. Natural on the warm and very ORGANIC side of the sound. This is real sound for me! And I can't explain how, but I began to hear things in the treble that I was missing out my pervious XA 60.8 !!
After 36h they finally began to call me for attention with those extra information on the tracks. This nuances are very important for me and making in my head more realistic presentation. It is more emotional listening!
In comparison with XA 60.8 they are in Bass region not that detailed as I was already familiar with. The Bass punch me in belly, just not on my whole body like point 8. What I mean is that the bass on point 8 are more detailed. But this is for me less important to me. Maybe it will evolve during the burn-in time.
I have read on the net that during burn-in time the sound on the point 5 will be even more organic?! As for me I can't imagine that, but sure hoop for :-)

What for me is very important that the bad records sounds bearable to my years with this amp.
Oh boy I'm so pleased with it so far, and I want more :-)

I will update this post later on during the burn in time. For me the point 8 is very neutral amp with tight bass and the Point 5 is emotional amp and life like.


Take two:

After now 12 days of burn in those are my conclusions:

The amplifier XA 160.5 is very musical genius! It's quite emotional presentation what I was familiar to Aleph X but with far better neutrality and lighting speed and slam! They are fast compared to Aleph X with toons of meat on the bones. I mean that they reproduce very complex music with toons of information that have weight and on the same time in endless space. Just stunning for me.Believability to this music reproduction is on the top level.. This is amplifier hat combine the Aleph X series with Point 8 to me !
Now there is no comparing possible with my old XA 60.8 because there was never this kind of emotional connection between me and my point 8 Amp. I wrote about this on many more forums in desperate search for the soul in this amplifier!
What stroke me also that listening at quiet levels is more realistic then point 8 amp.
So I will now stop writing on the .8 amplifier because of this. I can't be anymore objective in 100% because of this. The point .5 is definitely my favorite series in Pass Program except the XS series that maybe will be the next big thing
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