Crown XLS power amp?

Crown XLS power amp?

Postby jeager » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:24 pm

Anybody tried one of these yet. I was looking at the recent thread on power amps and thought maybe someone had tried the crown xls series. I had the MC 250 for a while but gave it up for a Mesa 50/50. They both sound great but the mesa fit in my little rack with wheels and was easy to hook up. Now I am thinking about the crown XLS because it is so light (11 pounds), inexpensive, no tubes to replace or worry about and it has some kind of peak limiter which might be nice.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby playingdead » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:27 pm

I had an XLS back in 2008 (402, I think) and found it to be very sterile and harsh sounding ... it didn't last long in my rig.

Your ears may hear it differently ...
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby jeager » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:35 pm

Well i certainly trust your opinion. That said there I should have mentioned I was talking about the newer XLS Drive Core amps. Probably should stick with what I got though.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby Ender » Mon Feb 13, 2012 4:41 pm

I used one for a while with a frenzel ab763 preamp and jbl's sounded and it sounded pretty good. I then started using it with the same preamp and a 2x12 Marshall cab and it sounded horrible. I am trying to sell mine, and was considering a mesa 50/50 hahahah! I wasn't going after straight Jerry tone either, I was trying to get more of a Kimock-type sound.
I can almost assure you the mesa will sound a lot better.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby jeager » Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:43 pm

Yea, i really do like the mesa lots. New set of JJs and it really sounds nice. The guy on the other thread was talking about how close the QSC sounded to a Mac, but that QSC is like 800 bucks if I'm not mistaken.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby playingdead » Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:51 pm

If that's a Class D amp, it might be just fine ... the power amp I went to with my old rig was the power section of an Acoustic Image Focus 2R head, which was also Class D.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby Counterstriker » Thu Feb 16, 2012 9:33 am

I use a crown in my rig, it can get REAL LOUD! The thing is, it basically keeps your tone sterile, so the poweramp doesn't add anything to your tone. I'm sure it does add something.. but I don't notice it. Does great for me though!
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby eric » Thu Feb 16, 2012 10:53 am

I've had an xls 1000 for a little while now ...

Not the most "musical" sounding amp but ..... Loud as snot .. Super light and portable , and super cheap .. Even if you get one and don't like it , It would make a great back-up .. I just ordered my SMS last week , as soon as I get it I could post some clips of it in action ...
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby eric » Tue Mar 20, 2012 11:04 pm

playingdead wrote:I had an XLS back in 2008 (402, I think) and found it to be very sterile and harsh sounding ... it didn't last long in my rig.
Your ears may hear it differently ...


yep....got my SMS (oh yea!) last week and just came back from an ear dart session down in CT...
a few untamed envelope spikes with all that power has made me realize: This amp has way more juice than I'll EVER need. I put in some ear plugs at one point just to see how far I could really push the rig. Holy shit...it's beyond loud. Filthy....Yet, It's barely even registering a signal on the level output meter. Even taking a super hot output from the SMS was barely giving any signal indication on the power amp. Then, (with the SMS rear output at noon, and gain around 11 o'clock) you really can't even get the output knobs on the Crown to 40%, without doing some hearing damage.
Last edited by eric on Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby eric » Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:06 pm

upon furthur review, I still like this amp alot. I was being a tad harsh, my own dysfunction from problems dialing in a new setup... I'm going to throw an Earth Drive or similar in front of the SMS, as an always on type thing to give some warmth. Also contemplating a red box in the rear. Thinking of trying to get wald's buffer in pedal form too.

The XLS 1000 and SMS TOGETHER weigh just 13.1 lbs!! Thats Unreal.


Also,want to add I played acoustic through it this weekend. After some tweaking , it was freakin sweet. ( the SMS is the first amp eq I can fully hear). Very unique tone. Very hard to describe. But I ended up having one of the best jams with my buddies in a long time , and I'm convinced it was because my tone was like butter...It gave me added confidence to go after it and even the clams sounded sweet...
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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby eric » Thu Apr 05, 2012 8:42 pm

I'm ultimately trying to dial in proper gain staging. I'm left with more questions.

Guys, I've been beating the snot out of this horse for quite some time but...upon even furthur and furthur review, I've decided that I REALLY like this amp (XLS 1000)
I think makes the SMS sound amazing. I don't believe it to be harsh at all now. yada yada yada...

I've also discovered that it is perfectly suited for the K120-8. I think...

I'm trying to find the physical settings of my amplifier output knobs where I know that I am pushing the speaker just comfortably before it will blow......

Using the old JBL info from their site, they suggest to use the continuous sine wave(2) as it's appropriate power rating.

For a K120-8 , that is 100W.

According to Crown, you want your amplifier rated at (1.6-2.5) 2.0 avg x the power rating of the speaker.

2.0 x 100W= 200W. The XLS runs at 215 W per channel at 8ohms. Sounds good...

Assuming the output knobs are linear audio taper pots, setting them to the 50% mark meaning that my peaks are hitting around 100w as , aren't I maxing out the speaker at 100W???

But, doesn't it depend on the output of the SMS too?
I'm trying to figure out where too far is too far, so I don't blow one,...Now I'm just confused again...You never have to worry about this stuff with a combo...Someone....Please...

here's the crown link, it's got some good info and tools:
http://www.crownaudio.com/amp_htm/amp_info/how_much_power.htm
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Good Enough for Jimi Herring

Postby eric » Sun Dec 30, 2012 11:56 pm

@16:10

JH using the Crown XLS to power his AxeFx (just for verb).

Good enough for Jimi Herring , good enough for me.

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Re: Crown XLS power amp?

Postby zambiland » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:21 pm

eric wrote:I'm ultimately trying to dial in proper gain staging. I'm left with more questions.

Guys, I've been beating the snot out of this horse for quite some time but...upon even furthur and furthur review, I've decided that I REALLY like this amp (XLS 1000)
I think makes the SMS sound amazing. I don't believe it to be harsh at all now. yada yada yada...

I've also discovered that it is perfectly suited for the K120-8. I think...

I'm trying to find the physical settings of my amplifier output knobs where I know that I am pushing the speaker just comfortably before it will blow......

Using the old JBL info from their site, they suggest to use the continuous sine wave(2) as it's appropriate power rating.

For a K120-8 , that is 100W.

According to Crown, you want your amplifier rated at (1.6-2.5) 2.0 avg x the power rating of the speaker.

2.0 x 100W= 200W. The XLS runs at 215 W per channel at 8ohms. Sounds good...

Assuming the output knobs are linear audio taper pots, setting them to the 50% mark meaning that my peaks are hitting around 100w as , aren't I maxing out the speaker at 100W???

But, doesn't it depend on the output of the SMS too?
I'm trying to figure out where too far is too far, so I don't blow one,...Now I'm just confused again...You never have to worry about this stuff with a combo...Someone....Please...

here's the crown link, it's got some good info and tools:
http://www.crownaudio.com/amp_htm/amp_info/how_much_power.htm



The settings of the knobs on the amp don't affect how much power the amp can bring to bear, just how much input voltage you need to get there. It can still put out all of the rated power with knobs at 1/4 if the preamp has the juice and the SMS surely does. If you want to limit the power, use a limiter. Perhaps the amp has one built in.
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