Preamplifiers

MBL Corona Components and 120 Loudspeakers

December 13, 2012
MBL Corona Components and 120 Loudspeakers

Neil Gader has posted a review of the MBL C31 CD player ($9200), C11 preamplifier ($8800), C21 power amplifier ($9200), and 120 loudspeakers ($21,400/pair) at The Absolute Sound. His conclusions: “While I have more to say about the Corona electronics in the extended sidebar, in some ways I can’t say enough. Prior to adding...
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Constellation Audio Altair Preamplifier and Hercules Monoblock Amplifiers

December 9, 2012
Constellation Audio Altair Preamplifier and Hercules Monoblock Amplifiers

Robert Harley has posted a review of the Constellation Audio Altair preamplifier ($60,000) and Hercules monoblock amplifiers ($140,000/pair) at The Absolute Sound. His conclusions: “The overall tonal character of the Altair and Hercules was one of an open, airy, and extended top octave, a very slightly emphasized midband that contributed to the extraordinary palpability,...
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Emotive Audio Poeta Preamplifier

December 6, 2012
Emotive Audio Poeta Preamplifier

Chris Simmons has posted a review of the Emotive Audio Poeta preamplifier ($4995) at Stereo times. His conclusions: “The Poeta is unquestionably a tube preamplifier and that comes with a certain amount of warmth. But its overall presentation is relatively neutral and very consistent from top to bottom without imposing any tube glow on...
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JE Audio VL10.1 Preamplifier

December 4, 2012
JE Audio  VL10.1 Preamplifier

Will Wright has posted a review of the JE Audio VL10.1 preamplifier ($5400) at Positive Feedback. His conclusions: “There is only one thing wrong with this Line Stage Preamp. I have to give it back. It’s true that some will be put off by the lack of remote control. Others may want more inputs...
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Audio Research DSPre Preamplifier and DAC

December 1, 2012
Audio Research DSPre Preamplifier and DAC

Vade Forrester has posted a review of the Audio Research DSPre preamplifier and DAC ($7495) at SoundStage! HiFi. His conclusions: “I’m betting that Audio Research’s DSPre preamplifier-DAC is an early example of a component we’ll see more of in the future: a single box into which can be plugged cables from all sources, digital...
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Luminous Audio Axiom II Signature Passive Preamplifier

November 27, 2012
Luminous Audio Axiom II Signature Passive Preamplifier

Roy Harris has posted a review of the Luminous Audio Axiom II Signature passive preamplifier ($220) at Audiophilia. His conclusions: “The preamp is highly resolving, unlike many of the tube preamps I have encountered. It is quiet and free of sonic artificats. It enables you to hear all instruments on a recording, provided the...
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Audio Research Reference 5 SE Preamplifier

November 9, 2012
Audio Research Reference 5 SE Preamplifier

Brian Damkroger has posted a review of the Audio Research Reference 5 SE preamplifier ($12,995) at Stereophile. His conclusions: “Summing up my experience of Audio Research’s Reference 5 SE preamplifier is pretty easy: I was smitten. I hear a lot of great audio gear, but it’s been a long time since I’ve been so...
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Gryphon Audio Designs Athena Preamplifier

November 7, 2012
Gryphon Audio Designs Athena Preamplifier

Srajan Ebaen has posted a review of the Gryphon Audio Designs Athena preamplifier (€9500) at 6moons. His conclusions: “Gryphon’s Athena delivers exactly what her specs predicted all along – a very quick supremely nuanced deftly articulated sound that puts a microscope on hall ambiance and a roto rooter down clogged drains. In keeping with...
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Triode Corporation TRX-1 Line Preamplifier

November 5, 2012
Triode Corporation TRX-1 Line Preamplifier

Dick Olsher has posted a review of the Triode Corporation TRX-1 line preamplifier ($3000) at The Absolute Sound. His conclusions: ” This is not the most resolving line preamp out there. Neither low-level detail resolution nor spatial resolution are in the same class as more expensive preamps. Soundstage dimensions are fleshed out believably but...
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Bryston BP 1.5 Phonostage

November 1, 2012
Bryston BP 1.5 Phonostage

Jeff Dorgay has posted a review of the Bryston BP 1.5 phono stage ($4890 with power supply) at TONEAudio. His conclusions: “The Bryston BP 1.5 phono stage is a top performer and makes no missteps, but understand its honest presentation will not favor cartridges and/or systems that are already biased towards the forward and...
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Simaudio Moon Evolution 810LP Phono Stage

October 31, 2012
Simaudio Moon Evolution 810LP Phono Stage

Graham Abbott has posted a review of the Simaudio Moon Evolution 810LP phono stage ($12,000) at UltraAudio. His conclusions: “Whether searching for absolute sonic fidelity or questing for an emotional connection to the music we love and cherish, most of us end up assembling a sometimes-quixotic mixture of gear that creates the closest approximation...
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Nagra VPS Phono Stage

October 31, 2012
Nagra VPS Phono Stage

Jeff Dorgay has posted a review of the Nagra VPS phono stage ($5995-$7490) at TONEAudio. his conclusions: “The key to the VPS is nuance balanced with power. It reveals all of the subtle details that will make your record collection come alive, yet is not the least bit fussy. If you don’t have two...
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Audio Research LS27 Preamplifier and Reference 75 Power Amplifier

October 30, 2012
Audio Research LS27 Preamplifier and Reference 75 Power Amplifier

Alan Sircom has posted a review of the Audio Research LS27 preamplifier ($7495) and Reference 75 power amplifier ($9995) at Hi-Fi+. His conclusions: “At this point, the Ref 75 invites a difficult question of the reader. Do you need more than this? The answer is frequently ‘no’, especially in places like the UK where...
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Pass Labs XP-10 Stereo Preamplifier

October 29, 2012
Pass Labs XP-10 Stereo Preamplifier

John E. Johnson, Jr. has posted a review of the Pass Labs XP-10 stereo preamplifier ($5250) at Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity. His conclusions: “So, I have reviewed all three of Pass Labs’ stereo preamplifiers. All of them perform beautifully, and each one has its own sonic personality, but the differences are...
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Red Wine Audio’s Ginevra LFP-V Phono Stage

October 29, 2012
Red Wine Audio’s Ginevra LFP-V Phono Stage

Steve Guttenberg has posted a review of the Red Wine Audio’s Ginevra LFP-V phono stage ($3000) at TONEAudio. His conclusions: “If you’re in the market for a phono preamp that’ll get you closer to the by-the-number sound of the better solid-state alternatives, the Ginevra probably ain’t it. But if you’re like me, you might...
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Vitus Audio RL-101 Reference Series Preamplifier

October 12, 2012
Vitus Audio RL-101 Reference Series Preamplifier

Dave Thomas has posted a review of the Vitus Audio RL-101 Reference Series preamplifier ($11,250) at Stereo Times. His conclusions: “Clearly the competition for the RL-101 is not the RI-100, it’s every other linestage on the market. And in its price range (and below) there is a ton of competition, the excellent Classe’ Audio...
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Concert Fidelity CF-080LSX2 Line Preamplifier

October 9, 2012
Concert Fidelity CF-080LSX2 Line Preamplifier

Dick Olsher has posted a review of the Concert Fidelity CF-080LSX2 preamplifier ($24,000) at The Absolute Sound. His conclusions: “There is no doubt in my mind that Masataka Tsuda’s designs push the state-of-the-art forward. His success lies in the potent combination of a minimalist, Zen-like design philosophy and perfectionist execution focused on parts-quality and...
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Alpha Design Labs Esprit Stereo DAC, Preamplifier and Headphone Amplifier

October 3, 2012
Alpha Design Labs Esprit Stereo DAC, Preamplifier and Headphone Amplifier

David W. Robinson has posted a review of the Alpha Design Labs Esprit Stereo 192/24 DAC and preamplifier ($999) at Positive Feedback. His conclusions: “If you have a few thousand more dollars, you can buy better, of course. But that’s not the point. You don’t have to own a Porsche, Ferrari, or Bugatti to...
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Luminous Audio Technology Axiom II Passive Preamplifier

September 30, 2012
Luminous Audio Technology Axiom II Passive Preamplifier

Erik Putens has posted a review of the Luminous Audio Technology Axiom II passive preamplifier ($195) at HiFi Zine. His conclusions: “So, I guess when it’s all said and done, I don’t necessarily recommend this version of the Axiom II but rather its little brother – the single input version. How various components interact...
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SMc Audio VRE-1C Reference Preamplifier

September 30, 2012
SMc Audio VRE-1C Reference Preamplifier

Ryan Coleman has posted a review of the SMc Audio VRE-1C Reference preamplifier ($15,000) at UltraAudio. His conclusions: “Anyone considering spending $16,950 on a line stage can be certain that the SMc Audio VRE-1C Reference is among the quietest, most resolving preamplifiers on the market, able to achieve those qualities without committing sins in...
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