Rega Brio 3 vs. Mira 3?

 

New member
Username: Sjhifi

Post Number: 1
Registered: Nov-07
What difference is there in performance between the two? What about the phono stage, are they the same? I've read the Brio 3 is ridiculously good considering the price. I've also read some people even prefer it to the Mira 3. I'll be using the amp to power a pair of Rega R3 but eventually I might upgrade to spendor. The fact it doesn't have a remote bothers me a little but I can reach from my seat so that won't be a huge problem. Any help is appreciated. Thanks!
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5547
Registered: Feb-05
I have the Mira 3 and like it slightly better than the Brio, primarily for the remote. The Brio is indeed a fabulous amp for the layout and with the R3's (I have the R5's and love 'em) and a decent analog front end you could be set for awhile. I believe they have the same phono section (someone will correct me if I'm wrong) and it's a very good one.

The R3's are probably the best buy in the Rega speaker lineup. I bought the 5's because I had a credit with the store and I like them just a hair better than the 3's but not enough to pay the difference from scratch.

Let us know how it turns out.
 

Silver Member
Username: Chicomoralessxm

Dutch islesCaribbean

Post Number: 197
Registered: Feb-07
Also the Mira has pre-outs i'm sure it makes for a nice preamp if you need a little extra juice
 

Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 2493
Registered: Sep-04
Indeed, the preamp stage in the Mira is that bit better, with more attack and control. The power amp is more capable of driving more difficult loads too. That said, R3s are a snap to drive so either amplifier will work well. Both have very similar phono stages (which makes it ridiculously good value in the Brio). Overall, yes, the performance from the Brio is excellent value for money, and arguably better value than the Mira - until you go for more difficult speakers when it becomes easier to stress the Brio.

As for speakers, no, not Spendors, please, whatever you do - especially the S5e. I cannot understand why people like this speaker! If you want something fun (which the R3s are), then consider Naim n-Sats or Dynaudio 42s. But really with a Brio and R3s, you most likely should be looking more at your source for improvements than anything else.

Regards,
Frank.
 

New member
Username: Sjhifi

Post Number: 2
Registered: Nov-07
To be honest I've never heard the s5e, I'm basing my opinion on reviews and my personal experience with other spendor models. I owned a pair of s3/5 that I used with a a full Naim system and at near field (1.5-2m) they were simply magic. I tried a pair of N-sats in the same set up and they just didn't work so well near field as the s3/5. However the N-sats at the dealer's showroom really held there own compared to the Ariva. The only problem the s3/5 has is the limited bass. I know I would end up wanting to buy a sub and I hate trying to integrate subs! So for now the money is going to go on sources. On the cdp I'm not spending a lot because I'm going with the apollo. The record player is another story. I'm currently using a P1 but come next year I'll replace it with a P5 w/ PSU and Exact. Who know if fund permit I might go all the way up to the P9. That's how much I enjoy playing records! Do you think the phono stage on the brio is good enough for the Exact? What other cartridge can I use that doesn't require VTA adaptors? When I had my LP-12 I used a Clearaudio Virtuoso MM that was excellent. Are you familiar with clearaudio on Rega tonearms? Thank you for all your comments!
 

Gold Member
Username: Stu_pitt

Irvington, New York USA

Post Number: 2237
Registered: May-05
The Dynavector 10x5 sounds awsome with Rega tonearms. I woundn't put it on a P1 or P9, but everything in between works very well.

Just my opinion.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5557
Registered: Feb-05
The phono stage is good enough to get plenty of the goodie from the 10x5 but not all of it. With the Mira or Brio without an external phono I would not go above the P5 and 10x5, if you intend to add an external phono then by all means. Just remember Rega starts to have some pretty tough competition above the price of the P5 from the likes of Michell and Nottingham (among a whole bunch of others). The P5 with external power suppy with a Dyn 20x and external phono will produce more goodie than the Mira or Brio can wring out of it (so imagine a P9 etc). Keep balance in mind when looking at a system. The system is only as good as the sum of ALL of it's parts.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Dudywoxer

ScunthorpeUK

Post Number: 32
Registered: Mar-06
Joe, I'm afraid that I am going to have to contradict Frank's opinion of the Spendor S5e's.
My opinion is the inverse. I had Rega R3's on the end of a Rega set up that started as planet/Brio/R3's, and is now Saturn, Cursa-exxon-spendor S5e's. In the wrong system spendors can be a bit laid back, however drive them with something with some life and they are a very well balanced speaker, and are a considerable upgrade on the R3's and R5's. May be the R7s can live with them.
They are not a speaker that will impress you in a quick demonstration as their real strengths take a while to come through.
When I first tried the spen's my immediate impression was that they were 'slower' then the Rega's. When you have spent a little time with them you realise they are not, they just have more meat on the bones, and they time and swing as well if not better than the the R series. They are a superb speaker to listen to for long periods without any listener fatigue setting in. They image very well, are not too fussy about room placement, and have the ability to fill a room with music, to such an extent that off axis listening is every bit as enjoyable as sitting in the sweet spot. They have a very different presentation to Rega and Naim speakers, and one that should be at least considered.
Don't write off the Rega's, or others, but do try to get a home demonstration of the Spendors along with any others.
 

New member
Username: Sjhifi

Post Number: 3
Registered: Nov-07
Let me start by thanking all of you for your input. I'm aware that anything over a P5/10x5 or equivalent will not be completely revealed through the Brio, but I strongly agree with Ivor's source always first school of thought. So I plan to spend as much as possible on the source. The apollo is so darn good for it's price that I prefer to spend more on the record player instead of getting the saturn. Once I upgrade the phono part then I will look into getting a better amp. Maybe I would jump to a Cursa/Exxon or the new Plinius integrated (great value and very good match with Rega in my opinion).
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9110
Registered: Dec-04
I like a good balance, but if a full upgrade is in your future Joe, well source first is the rule.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5568
Registered: Feb-05
My Rega dealer sells Spendor and Rega speakers and prefers the Rega...it's all a matter of preference as I know another dealer who sells both and owns Spendor for her own system...

Joe, I like your priorities...your system will rock!
 

Silver Member
Username: Chicomoralessxm

Dutch islesCaribbean

Post Number: 198
Registered: Feb-07
I'd love to get my hands on rega mira3 ive been hearing lots of good things about them.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 288
Registered: Jul-07
Have had my Mira3 only a short time. Using it to power a Rega3 turntable. Very happy with that.
Dilemna now is that my living room int-amp died which was powering the Rotel 1072 CDP and Quad 11L speakers. I could move the Mira3 in there and find another amp for the vinyl... or leave that good system alone and get something else for the Quad/CDP/TV system.
I see a Classe Cap 100 pretty cheap on AudiogoN. I have been watching for a Nait5. (Yo Nuck-you are the Classe guy here!)
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9143
Registered: Dec-04
Kevin, the cap100 is unfortunately, not the best piece from Classe.
Measured values can vary unaccepably from specs, although the result is happy, channel seperation can drive a close listener a bit loony.

The cap150, however is another matter.
For whatever reason, the 150 was treated to a better dual mono treatment, with seperation and adherence to specific qualities greatly improved.
The phono of the 100 is a bane, the same in the 150 a boon.
Either system can be outdone with a good outboard phono stage. But I mean good.

Keep in mind that all of the Classe line benefit from balanced operation, transformer based, and that is one of the reasons for the price and reputation that the brand carries.
But the cap100, unbalanced, will be undressed very quickly for someone like yourself.
The cap150(seen any of those cheap?) is way above the 100, but again, if you do not take advantage of the Classe very very good balanced operation you can shop elsewhere with ease.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5585
Registered: Feb-05
Kevin, look for a matching Rotel, they go relatively inexpensively. It ain't as good as a Classe but may match the gear you have better.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9149
Registered: Dec-04
There ya go!
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9150
Registered: Dec-04
Seldom meet a Rotel that I don't like.
 

New member
Username: Sjhifi

Post Number: 4
Registered: Nov-07
ART, regarding the P5/10x5 combination how many spacers are necessary to get it right with the RB700. I've read some people use 2mm others 4mm. What are you using currently? Also did you set up your's or did the dealer do it for you? I always inclined on going with the exact because of the idiot proof set up but I have no doubt the 10x5 is a better value the rega cartridge.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5588
Registered: Feb-05
1 2mm spacer Joe.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 289
Registered: Jul-07
Thanks guys. Rotel does seem to be a good idea. I am pleased with the Rotel CDP and Tuner. That would give me 2 systems of complete brand sets (except speakers).
I never have had that before!! Not with my previous haphazard method of picking up used gear over the years.

2d question now that I have decided to buy another amp:

Repair or not the old dead Onix OA21S int-amp. It was a rare unit that no one seemed to know about. I got it used from Hawthorne, my Seattle Rega guy, who assured me it was good. It replaced Haffler separate amp and pre amp. I think it may be better than I expected. I used it on various spkrs for about 10 years so I got my money's worth. I am hesitant to spend money on an old piece (not being a Mac, Naim or other well respected unit). Well, it can sit in the closet for a few years ;)
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5596
Registered: Feb-05
"Well, it can sit in the closet for a few years ;)"

Yep. You'll have 2 very good systems...outstanding!
 

Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 2504
Registered: Sep-04
Joe, I agree with Art - just one 2mm spacer required.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 291
Registered: Jul-07
I just decided to test out the Mira3 on the main system with the Rotel CDP and Tuner, and Quad 11L speakers. Sounds great! Will temporarily use an old reciever on the vinyl.
I just missed a Rotel integrated amp on AudiogoN. He said it sold in the 1st 20 minutes of being posted!!!!!
There are two Mira3s on AgoN now for $650 each.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9210
Registered: Dec-04
Which Rotel was listed KC?
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 292
Registered: Jul-07
Integrated amp RA 1062 for $350 US. I believe it is $700 new.
I bid on a Nait5i on ebay but they passed me now at $710. Even when I am top someone passes me at the last few seconds. That one has 2 days left. That seller, Gene Rubin Audio also has an Apollo now near $600 with 2 days to go.
As for online buying, which I never did before this new system, it all worked out well but the Velo Sub I paid for in AUG but never got. Seller claims to have sent it and got it back twice. hmmmmm.

I am no expert, but I think this new Mira3/Rotel/Quad is very nice and compatable for a budget used set up! Thanks to all you guys help and patience with my ignorant questions.

I can only leave the deep freeze of Alaska for one week this winter, after Christmas. That won't be time to shop. Will go to Seattle, no time to visit my friends in Portland and Bend Oregon.
 

Silver Member
Username: Chicomoralessxm

Dutch islesCaribbean

Post Number: 203
Registered: Feb-07
Man that is quite a deal on the rotel i would have loved to scoop that up!
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 295
Registered: Jul-07
I thought it was a steal too, but the seller said that he thought that that was a normal fair price. Sill, selling in 20 min proves it was a good deal.
Well, those Mira3 amps are there. I would go for one another one but it would be more fun to try something different.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5632
Registered: Feb-05
I'm gonna try to get my hands on a Rotel integrated one of these days to go with Rotel CD player and B&W 610's the synergy is unmistakeable.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9221
Registered: Dec-04
Yes it is, Art.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 296
Registered: Jul-07
I am watching the ads. I will pm you if I see one. That guy on AgoN said he sees one per month.
Would a good deal on seperate Rotel amp-preamp be just as good?

(Digressing from the int-amp thread:
I do like the B&W that I heard including 601, 602 and 700 +and 800+, but not the 610. B&W does suit my taste. Perhaps partly because we play much of the same music. I just started recently reading the audio magazines. Maybe a bad idea. In any case I read that: B&W685-"Raising the Bar in Affordable...speakers")
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 297
Registered: Jul-07
That came out wrong. I have not heard the B&W610. Like all those I did hear.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5636
Registered: Feb-05
Gotcha Kevin....
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 300
Registered: Jul-07
I bought the Rotel RA 1070 integ-amp that went on AgoN yesterday. I pm you yesterday morning Art but it wouldn't wait so I went for it. That gives me the Rotel amp/tuner/cdp set!
Now all I need is an Apollo for the Mira 3, P3 turntable set up!!!!!!!
Not too soon though. I don't want a divorce.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5660
Registered: Feb-05
I returned your PM Kevin...glad you got the Rotel...enjoy!!!
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 301
Registered: Jul-07
I missed the message. So, I am sure it is good but there is little info on google for that unit. It is apparently no longer available? Not on Rotel's current catalog. I only found one review online. Still the number 1070 is so close to my RCD 1072 it must be recent. Now they just list the 1062 int amp.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 302
Registered: Jul-07
Now retired: Onix OA21s
http://homepage.ntlworld.com/hon.lau/onix.htm
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 305
Registered: Jul-07
The Rotel 1070 is great!!!!! I could go out on a limb and say it sounds as good as the Mira3 on the vinyl. For a 1st reference test I played an old '74 Gary Burton LP w/Methany and Eberhard Weber on ECM. Does awsome sound trite?
Of course, I am comparing it to other amps I have used with those speakers. This being the 5th one. (I have had them for a long long time). Perhaps it would be limited with more high end speakers, turntable etc, but it is perfect for my set up. In a few days I will move the Mira3 back to the Rega turntable and use the Rotel w/ the Rotel cdp and TV/DVD. My little 2 channel home theatre.
It has a lot of places to connect stuff in back!
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5672
Registered: Feb-05
Congrats on the new amp...I'm looking for a Rotel that matches my CD player. Rotel makes very good value gear.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 306
Registered: Jul-07
I am glad you didn't get this one! :-)
It looks like a perfect match for my RCD 1072. The look, design style is the same. I was confused because the RCD 1072 is still in the catalog but not the RA 1070 int-amp which, from what I can find, is about 6-7 yrs old and not available new. It is hard to keep up with all the models even with the Rotel archive. I found one review from 2003: http://www.tnt-audio.com/ampli/rotel1070_e.html
Well it sounds great and was a good deal. Thanks to the guys here who recommend the Rotel brand. Now I am a fan.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 5676
Registered: Feb-05
I really like the robust presentation of Rotel. They really match up well with B&W 600 series and Paradigm Studio's.
 

Silver Member
Username: Nickelbut10

Post Number: 781
Registered: Jun-07
Kevin, have you done a A/B test with the rotel vs the mira 3? Just curious to hear what your thoughts are.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 307
Registered: Jul-07
Not exactly AB. I have been switching amps back and forth between 2 systems: The Rega P3 turntable w/ the Rogers spkrs, the so called vinyl room; and the living room with the Rotel cdp and QuadllL spkrs.
I got the Mira 3 and played it for vinyl then I moved it into the living room to play cds
Then when the Rotel amp came I wanted to try out the phono before going back to the long range plan of putting the brands together.
I have to say they both sound so good in either room that I could be happy either way.
I am afraid that it may be prejudice or wishful thinking because it was my plan but here goes anyway:
The Mira3 on the turntable seems more open or airy. I am not good at describing the wines :-) The Rotel amp...More like as if you turned a treble control down, but, well as Art says, sounds robust. Still even on the same reference style music ECM it is completely satisfying.

The Rotel has speaker A and B so there are 8 posts to connect speaker wires. Since the Quads have 4 each I am bi wiring that system.
Maybe that is why the Rotel RCD and DVD seem to have more base with the Rotel amp. I feel like it may be better even than the Mira here.
So I am saying that I prefer the amps where they belong by plan. Could I be objective?
Maybe it is the synergy which I am just learning about here as explained by Jan and others.
It is possible that I may fail a blindfold test, but love the sound either way!
 

Silver Member
Username: Nickelbut10

Post Number: 782
Registered: Jun-07
Right on Kevin. This X-mas im looking at getting a rega piece. Was looking at the Mira 3 to pair up with my Apollo. Or the Cursa pre amp, with a power amp. But the reason I was asking, is because I would have figured the Mira3 would have been better than the Rotel, then again, ive never heard the rotel. Im glad you gave me a good post. Thanks.
 

Silver Member
Username: Kevincorr

Fairbanks, Alaska Usa

Post Number: 308
Registered: Jul-07
Well the Rega3 may indeed be open, clear with the Apollo as it is with the P3 table.
And remember my speakers are good but limited.
 

Silver Member
Username: Nickelbut10

Post Number: 784
Registered: Jun-07
Got ya. Thanks Kevin.
 

Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 2556
Registered: Sep-04
Joe,

I forgot to mention that in my view the 10x5 works well on the P3 and P5 but I found it doesn't work very well on the P7 and P9. They seem to need more energetic cartridges such as Ortofon or higher end Dynavectors.

Also, the external power supply makes a huge difference to the P5's performance, so this is well worth the extra cash in my view. It takes an OK deck and makes it truly exciting and enjoyable. Oddly enough, the same power supply does not seem to make the P7 into a typical Rega. I think it lacks the life and soul that one expects from a Rega deck. For similar money I'd take a Gyrodec (I've used Michell decks for many years now). The P9 is marvellous (but again I'd choose an Orbe over it for a little bit more money). The Michells have improved their timing consistency hugely, so they don't flounder in the way old Michells used to.

The Rega decks are quite choosy about the cartridge you use, so it's worth finding a dealer who knows his onions or will allow you 'sale or return' basis deals.

Regards,
Frank.
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