Preamp for Emotiva XPA-2

Preamp for Emotiva XPA-2

The Emotiva XPA-2 is a modestly priced and powerful 2-channel amplifier that would be sufficient for most stereo systems. It is one of Emotiva’s very successful amplifiers which has undergone many upgrades and improvements ever since its debut. Emotiva XPA-2 now is in its 3rd generation and would provide its users with even more sonic performance than its predecessors.

We will be sharing with you a list of the best matching preamps later on, so please continue to read further.

Sonic Characteristics and Merits of Emotiva XPA-2

At first glance, the Emotiva XPA-2 looks mighty impressive and seems ready to drive loads of power into our speakers. It has a sleek chassis design and will fit right into most modern homes. More importantly, the Emotiva XPA-2 3rd Gen is incredibly powerful for the price. It could drive 300 Watts of RMS power into 8 Ohms with 2 channels driven. When it comes to 4 Ohms, the 2-channel power amplifier has up to 490 Watts (RMS) per channel. With this level of power output, it is capable of driving most modern loudspeakers. This does give you lots of options when choosing your stereo speakers as you don’t need to worry about your power amp is not powerful enough to drive them.

The Emotiva XPA-2 is designed and made for audiophiles, and since it is one of the company’s higher-end amplifier models, we do expect a lot from it. The high power output numbers of the XPA-2 are not for show, as the Emotiva stereo amp effortlessly drives our speakers. Producing impactful and authoritative bass energy with ease, it seems to be able to handle most music peaks. This allows the 2-channel amplifier to provide us with memorable crescendos and satisfying impacts. There also seems to have a bit more weight in the bass response when compared to other stereo power amps in the same price range.

More Details of Emotiva XPA-2 at Amazon

This does however gives us a more punchy music delivery and it can be really entertaining to listen to but if you prefer a calm and relaxing music presentation, the Emotiva XPA-2 might not be for you. It has that bold music delivery, with its wide and expansive soundstage, enveloping the listeners inside a room with musical presence. This made us think the Emotiva XPA-2 would be an excellent power amplifier choice for HT enthusiasts, especially for those who want more slams and impact.

Emotiva XPA-2 is a confident 2-channel amplifier and it is not shy in informing us about it. The XPA-2 is capable of bringing out the music details with high clarity. It has a wide dynamic range and bold energy when it comes to music delivery. Even though the Emotiva XPA-2 has an energetic sonic performance, it still sounded rather smooth and doesn’t sound harsh when pushed. For a 2-channel power amp at this price point, the Emotiva XPA-2 is really impressive. A list of the best matching preamps has been prepared below, kindly check them out. Just to add, we have taken the preamplifiers’ price points into consideration and won’t be selecting those which cost way more than the Emotiva XPA-2 stereo amplifier.

Best Preamps for Emotiva XPA-2

The Emotiva BasX PT1 is an excellent choice for your Emotvia XPA-2 especially since both of them are made by the same company, and they should share similar sound signatures. This Emotiva stereo preamplifier is affordable as well, making it ideal for listeners who have a tight budget. To provide more value to its users, the BasX PT1 also comes with a built-in D/A converter and a tuner. There is even a subwoofer output with a fixed 90Hz crossover frequency. It is certainly worth your time to arrange an audition with the Emotiva BasX PT1.

Cambridge Audio Azur 851N is an exceptional preamp choice for your Emotiva XPA-2 power amplifier. This is a network player which has won plenty of awards over the years. The Cambridge Audio Azur 851N has a better built-in DAC than the Emotiva BasX PT1. More importantly, the Azur 851N has that bold music delivery and matches well with the XPA-2. Not to mention, the Cambridge Audio preamp is also capable of projecting an open and wide soundstage. It has nice music timing and rhythm too.

More Details of Cambridge Audio Azur 851N at Amazon

The Parasound NewClassic 200 Pre is another solid preamp that doesn’t break the bank to own one. NewClassic 200 Pre will be a worthy choice for your Emotiva XPA-2. It comes with a plethora of features such as a Burr-Brown DAC, Phono input for MM/MC, Subwoofer output, HT Bypass, and many more. The stereo imaging and separation are good for the money, The low noise background helps to provide a clean and clear music presentation, and the Emotiva XPA-2 helps to add more slam to it.

If you are looking for a high-quality phono preamp then the Rega Aria is an amazing choice to go for. Like the Emotiva XPA-2, the Aria phono stage has a punchy performance with a bit more insights. This award-winning phono preamp is capable of providing its listeners with a dynamic and high-resolution music presentation. With the power and slam of the XPA-2 stereo amplifier, you got yourself a bold and energetic sound system, able to bring out the emotions of your favorite vinyl records. Rega Aria has a modest price tag as well.

More Information on Rega Aria at Amazon

Turntable users who prefer tubes may want to check out the Pro-Ject Tube Box S2 instead. The Pro-Ject Tube Box S2 adds tube warmth and delivers a smoother music presentation. It is also able to deliver plenty of punch which is great as you won’t lose the energy when partnering the Tube Box S2 with the Emotiva XPA-2 power amplifier. You will be able to enjoy hours of engaging music delivery without worrying about the listener’s fatigue due to the absence of harsh sound quality.

More Details of Pro-Ject Tube Box S2 at Amazon

Are you interested in setting up a surround sound system instead of a stereo setup? If yes, then you might be interested in Emotiva XMC-2 which is a 16-channel (9.1.6) surround sound processor. The Emotiva XPA-2 will be an ideal choice to be used to drive your left and right main channel speakers. You can use lower-end Emotiva power amplifier models to drive the surround sound speakers. It can be rather expensive to set up an HT system capable of delivering the latest 3D sound formats but for the ultimate home cinematic experience, this is the way to go.

To Sum It Up

The Emotiva XPA-2 is an exceptional all-rounder stereo amplifier and the sound quality you are getting is worth every penny invested. You can lower the energy level and impact by partnering your XPA-2 to preamps with calmer sonic traits. Do give the above preamps a look and you should shortlist a few of them for an audition.

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