|Aragon 2007 Multi-channel Power Amplifier|
|Home Theater Power Amplifiers Multi-Channel Amplifiers|
|Written by Ed Masterson|
|Sunday, 01 December 2002|
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I just got my kids the new “Spider-Man” (Columbia/TriStar Home Entertainment). They did a great job transferring this big-dollar superhero movie to DVD. During the action scenes, the dynamic power of this amplifier became apparent. The 2007 was able to drive all seven of the full-range speakers in my system to very loud levels without a hint of strain. The transitions between the conversations and action scenes with huge explosions occurred smoothly and naturally. Having seven identical amplifiers driving all seven speakers created one of the more seamless soundscapes that I have heard.
I decided to throw in an old favorite action movie, “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” (Artisan). This Arnold Schwarzenegger flick is chock-full of challenging sound effects. The narration that starts the movie is followed by the sound of a Terminator stepping on a skull. I have seen this many times, but when I played it through the 2007, I was still startled by the realistic sound of the crunching skull and the ensuing war scene – which is impressive even when compared to the Krell. During the biker bar scene, Schwarzenegger’s Terminator character is trying to score a biker outfit. In the process of taking what he needs, he throws one of the bikers onto a scalding hot griddle in the kitchen of the bar. I have heard all but the best systems get harsh and irritating during this scene. The 2007 had the headroom to handle all of the sound effects without negatively affecting the clarity of the voices or the sizzling sound of skin on the griddle.
Many wonder, who needs seven channels of amplification? I don’t know very many people with seven speakers to drive, and more significantly, media (DVD-Video, HDTV satellite feeds or D-VHS tapes) with seven channels of information. In many cases, consumers are purchasing seven-channel amplifiers and bridging two of the channels to create a more powerful five-channel amplifier with the flexibility to handle seven channels if they are someday inclined. In the case of the 2007, this was not an option, as this amplifier cannot be bridged. For those with no interest in seven-channel reproduction, Aragon offers a five-channel version in the 2005 model. The 2007 has only single-ended inputs. I would have liked to see balanced inputs and fully balanced operation. It is a better way to go in terms of amp design relative to cables. At this price and with Aragon’s history, I expect as much from a $3,000 amp. Finally, a triggered input for remote turn-on would be nice. Aragon offers a power-switching device that can be purchased separately.
The Aragon 2007 amplifier is proof that the Klipsch and Mondial are still on track with their goal to offer high-end performance at a moderate price. With this amplifier, you won’t have to worry about having enough power to drive your speakers. At $2 per watt, I think of Anthem and Sunfire when looking to find a home theater amplifier that can compare in terms of value. Although it lacks a few of the features that I have come to expect with high-end equipment, it is no slouch in terms of sound quality. The 2007 is able to create a wonderful two-channel music soundstage for any style of music, and has the power to handle the huge dynamic range of today’s movie soundtracks. If you are planning a high-end home theater, you should strongly consider the Stage One/2007 combo with seven speakers. If you are a movie lover wondering if you would ever use what a system like this can do, think no further. Once you install a theater of this quality in your house, you will never look back and will likely wonder how you lived without it.