AMP for Celestion SL6's


New member
Username: Jimalex

Post Number: 4
Registered: Feb-06
Need a new amp for my inefficient (8ohms 82 db sensitivity) Celestion SL6's. Dealer suggestions were Yamaha, Rotel, NAD and Simaudio Moon i-1(50 watts).Listen to female singers, folk, light rock/jazz at low to moderate volumes in an average size room. CD player is Denon 2200 and preferred budget is under $2,000. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 9003
Registered: Feb-05
Can you demo any of them? Among those mentioned the Sim is a standout. However it's limitations are obvious...power.

Another excellent amp would be the Arcam FMJ A18...could be just what the doctor ordered. I really like the Arcam sound and it should mate very nicely with your speakers. Again the limit is the 50 watts, however you listen at low to moderate levels so I think it would be alright.

Did your old amp die or what?

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 13363
Registered: May-04

I hope you're in a position to audition various brands with your speakers. The SL6's are not only low sensitivity systems but also required an amplifier with some capacity to deliver current on demand to get them up and running.

Don't get hung up on "watts", the quality of the amp - not the quantity of on paper watts - is what determines how well it drives your speakers. A 50 watt amplifier with good current delivery will be more than sufficient for most listeners with the SL6's. If you wanted to blow the doors out, you wouldn't have purchased the SL6's in the first place.

If possible you should give the current Rega and Naim products an audition. Either of these two lines should convince you all watts are not equal when you compare them to the Yamaha or Denon. The SL6's deserve better than the Rotel or NAD IMO. Sticking with a British sourced amplifier should provide some synergy not found in the brands your dealer has promoted.

I would avoid most tubed power amplifiers with these speakers but a hybrid of tubes in the pre amp and solid state, particularly MOSFET's, in the power amp would do well with the Celestions. If you have access to a Unico integrated, give it an audition also.

If you have yet to invest in top notch speaker stands with some mass loading capability, this should be on your radar too. Or check out the low slung hard maple block stands from Mapleshade audio.


New member
Username: Jimalex

Post Number: 5
Registered: Feb-06
Art, My old Sony VX550 (55 watts) just died and this time I don't think it will be easily fixed. (Most of front panel controls won't work) I can demo the moon speakers.

Jan, Thanks for the technical explanations. Currently using the attractive stands that came with the speakers. ($400 in 1982?) I assume they are good but how can you tell?

Many thanks for both of you for the suggestions. I will try and find the Arcam, Rega, Naim and Unico products and will let you know what I purchase.

New member
Username: Jimalex

Post Number: 6
Registered: Feb-06
Hi, Just bought the Arcam A18 while on a road trip to Vancouver. Special thanks Art.!!! Also, Thanks Jan for your useful comments. Auditioned the A18's and a Yamaha amplifier and clearly preferred the Arcams. Also got some recommended repairs done to my SL 6"s at Vancouver Audio Speaker. Great guys!

Am delighted with the combined result. Eva Cassidy never sounded so good.

Thanks again!!!
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