Reviews of Attainable Hi-Fi & Home-Theater Equipment

Reviews of Attainable Hi-Fi & Home-Theater Equipment

To Hans Wetzel,

I read your review of the Devialet 120 since I was thinking of buying one. When I was auditioning a pair of Harbeth speakers I heard this amp and thought it was one of the most amazing I’d ever heard, especially in terms of soundstage. What really interested me about your review was that you paired it with [KEF] R900s. These are the speakers I have and I am underwhelmed with [them], but that is probably due to my Cambridge Audio amplifier. Before I change my speakers, I’ll change the amp. Did you think that the KEFs were a good match for the 120?

Patrick Weldon

To be pretty direct, the Devialet 120, which has now been replaced by the Expert 130 Pro, remains the best amplifier I’ve ever heard. The 130 Pro purportedly cuts the already-low distortion rating of the 120 in half. I agree that you should change the amp before your speakers, especially since you know how good the Devialet amps are.

Regarding the R900s, I regret ever having sold them, and they remain my loudspeaker of choice for $5000/pair or less. I also recall being completely enamored with the Devialet/KEF tandem when I had the 120 in for review. Obviously, you may not feel the same way that I do about the KEFs, but I would consider holding onto them and trying them with Devialet’s SAM functionality, as they have a profile available for the R900. If they still don't strike your fancy, then at worst you'll have a “most amazing” amp to partner with whatever loudspeakers you wind up pivoting to next. Bottom line, grab a Devialet amp and don’t look back. . . . Hans Wetzel