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 Post subject: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 5:33 am 
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As always, if you have any comments, concerns, etc, let me know. I tried to find all the typos, but usually miss some.

http://www.soundbuggy.com/Eric/Car%20Audio/phoenix_gold/Elite_2012/4-channel/index.html



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 6:03 am 
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Very well done,Eric. You covered all the bases and gave a well detailed test and opinions.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 6:13 am 

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Thank you for taking your time for this review; it is greatly appreciated! Trying to decide between these and the Arc SE's for my build and I think you have made my choice somewhat easier as I have not used either.


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 Post subject: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 6:19 am 
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Thank you Eric, for taking the time to document this review (also to PG for allowing the trials).

Very interesting review for someone non technical like myself.

I'm really toying with the idea of something new school instead of pursuing the old school stuff I love.

I believe the elites have landed in the uk


Hmmm


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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 6:38 am 

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Nice job Eric.....and Phoenix Gold :D


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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 7:17 am 
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Eric did you check the bridged output?



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 7:59 am 
Morgan @ PG
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Direct from our production QC data the Elite.4 does the following power:

Normal:
4 ohms: 180 to 185 watts x 4
2 ohms: 290 to 300 watts x 4
1 ohm: 340 to 350 watts x 4 (Music/Reactive Load)

Bridged:
4 ohms: 580 to 600 watts x 2
2 ohms: 680 to 700 watts x 2 (Music/Reactive Load)

Keep in mind, this amp has a TON of headroom for dynamic performance on top of these power numbers.

Imagine two MS2125s or ZPA 0.3s in single amp. But much better pre-amp, output devices and cooling.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 10:06 am 
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The whole time I reviewed this amp I kept thinking of it in the back of my mind as a pair of MS2125s in one chassis, and a lot smaller. (not a whole lot less weight though, this amp is THAT heavy).

8 MT-200 BJTs have slightly more thermal capacity than 12 TO-3P BJTs do. I am not certain 8 TO-220 MOSFETs will win out against 8 TO-247 MOSFETs, but considering the age difference, they probably would.

A pair of MS2125s will get you more rail and input capacitance, but that does not automatically equal more performance.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 10:12 am 
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Eric in your opinion should sell my ms1000ta and replace it with this one?



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 10:59 am 
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Exciting review, wonder if I can afford one and or get my hands on one in the UK. Kinda makes me proud :roll:



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 12:00 pm 
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todd217 wrote:
Eric in your opinion should sell my ms1000ta and replace it with this one?


I owned a MS1000TA, and had it in my vehicle. I loved the look of the amp when mounted with its boards on display. I also modified the amp to output a lot more power. Compared to a stock MS1000TA, other than the looks of it, I would take the Elite.4 over it.

Keep in mind the MS1000TA is huge. The Elite is smaller, which would probably allow for the use of two in just a bit more space than the MS1000TA takes up. You could go with the Elite.2 on subs, or the beast Elite.1 on subs.



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Got "schooled" by member shawn k on May 10th, 2011...
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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 12:03 pm 
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Found out there is a UK distributer called Celsus who are just down the road from my place, hmmm... dream job!? :wink:



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 1:27 pm 
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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Check out the manual for the Elite amps. It is pretty funny. There is a 1980 something oscilloscope in the reflection off the top of the amp!

I had a hell of a time photographing the amp, as stuff on my test bench would be reflected in it. Well, it looks like PG had the same problem.



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Got "schooled" by member shawn k on May 10th, 2011...
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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 1:48 pm 
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as always with your reviews, lots of details on everything
love it ...
now where to get one ... in Tahiti?



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 2:08 pm 
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Thanks Eric for the review, and thanks to PG for making the amp and sending it to Eric...

Based on the review I'd be willing to say the other Elite amps would measure up to this as well? How would one of the Elite's compare to the ZPA's?


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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 5:20 pm 
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I don't think ZPAs are in the same category. I really like ZPAs, but they are not what I would consider an SQ amplifier.

Having a dual mode low impedance capable power supply is not an SQ feature, that is a feature of a subwoofer amplifier. Having a single power supply is also a subwoofer amp feature. Sure the ZPAs have balanced inputs, but plenty of other companies made woofer amps with balanced inputs back in the day as well. The only real SQ feature to the ZPAs is their lack of op-amps, but this is not enough to make up for their power supply shortcomings.

ZPAs are amplifiers with an identity crisis. They don't quite know just what they are.

Now, take the larger MS amps for example, and they have dual mono power supplies, like all the other really serious SQ amps before and after them. Also, MS amps don't have fans, another SQ feature.

If the Elite.2 has dual power supplies, it will probably be the best SQ amp PG has ever produced. The fan issue is not a big one, as you can turn off the fan on the Elite amps (just stereo and 4-channel I believe). Also, I turned on the fan in the Elite.4 and it was the quietest fan I have come across in a car audio amp. I am sure it will speed up when the heat is on though. In auto mode it never came on after hours of listening.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 8:50 pm 
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One thing I would like to add is that the Elite series was built to not only sound excellent but be ultra reliable.

We overbuilt the amplifier in nearly every way possible. T

ZPAs are excellent amps, but they break and break a lot.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 8:22 am 
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The reason I ask is I'm debating whether I want to keep the zpa's I have, or replace them with the new elites. I've got two Rsdc 12's and the 6.5 Ti comp set for the fronts. At some point I'd like to get the 9's to go with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2012 8:39 am 
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I LOVE the idea of dual power supplies, seeing as I run a sub off my rear channels. This amp would be utterly perfect for my setup (if it fits :shock: )

Burr brown... MT200's... holy friiiiiick............ PG you have outdone yourselves!!! :clap:


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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2012 2:19 pm 
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Morgan what was the list on this amp again? will they be sold in Canada?



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2012 4:34 am 
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yes but they are going to be painted yellow again :)



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 11:12 pm 
Morgan @ PG
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$1299.99 US MSRP

The will be sold in Canada, sorry no yellow ones this time!



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 6:41 am 
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Eric, again, thank you for the review. Have always loved reading your reviews with your personal twist. My problem with this amp is I like my veggie dog's and my son likes Jelly beans. ;)

Would be interesting to see a performance comparison to something like the ZED DREADNOUGHT.



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 5:21 pm 
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Great review Eric. I just might submit your review "site/page" to CA&E online....



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 Post subject: Re: Elite.4 Review
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 10:26 am 

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This beast looks VERY impressive....good to see PG back in the game with some serious high end parts and solid construction....something that remind me of the no-compromise approach taken by the European manufactuers.

I'd love to see an unbiased head to head of this Elite4 with the Soundstream REF4.920.

Not really a "which amp is a better performer". More of a comparison of how each amp relates to it's heritage and the older lines that they'll obviously be compared to.

Because lets face it....the PG Elite and SS REF lines are the first 2 that come to mind when anyone speaks of a comeback for an amp manufacturer.


So while the build quality of the Elite is on a different level that the REF amps.....I'd still like to see them compared.

I just want to see the new PG in the lanes and on the streets like in the old days when for me... PG and Soundstream got me interested in Car Audio.

So at this point for me in my next high end build it will either be Arc Audio Se or PG Elite..... :drool:



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