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Thread: Preamp Suggestions

  1. #11
    Member JimmyS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Chicago, IL
    Quote Originally Posted by bonzo75 View Post
    These are very different sound of preamps. There could easily be a few audiophiles who like one and not the other, as they are dissimilar. So advise would mean little, except for synergy, which points to Pass. Check with Madfloyd, he knows this amp and preamps well.
    Thanks. I will be able to home audition the Pass and ARC offerings, which will help learn of the differences in my own system.

    The original question was intended to ask for help to form a list of possibilities to explore during Axpona (I can't keep up with all the options out there). This way I can get an initial listen and speak with the local dealer about a possible home audition if I like what I hear.

  2. #12
    Highly recommend Mark at Reno High-fi if you are in the market for used Pass amps/preamps. I've had nothing but stellar interactions for everything Pass/First Watt.

  3. #13
    Subscribing! (as I have the same speakers)

    What about that Bespoke passive? Is it worth its price, or is it just like the ones from Music First/Townshend?

  4. #14
    Member Sponsor Addicted to Best!
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    Feb 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank750 View Post
    I had an XP30, an Xs Pre and now have an ARC Ref10. My first choice would be the Ref 10 and there is one listed for $17K on Audiogon, but unfortunately it's in Amsterdam. I wouldn't touch it for that reason but that's me. The other great choice is Mad Floyd's Xs at an incredible price. You'd be foolish not to jump on it. I like the XP30 but the Xs is far superior. Again, my opinion.
    +1 on this.

    Having compared the Ref 10 with the older Dartzeel model and Ypsilon PST mk 1, into the constellation insipid amp, the Ref 10 was clearly ahead. The Ypsilon and Dart were equal into the dart amp and Ypsilon edged ahead on the constellation, but the ARC was another league. With the external power supply and whatever they have done, it is now more resolving unlike the lower models. And like Roy Gregory says on his review, it is muscle, loud, big. The orchestra expands and rises and falls much better. Speakers were Alexias and source was the Lampi.

    So now this is my favorite pre even with the stock tubes. I can imagine it will only get better with Harlequin's tube rolls.

    The one thing was that some vocals were sounding hard, no idea why, and maybe that can be treated by cables etc or amp matching.

    Bottom end and slam was fantastic. Soundstage was way larger.

    So AR ref 40 used is the way to go

    Based on Roy Gregory's report will like to compare to VTL 7.5 Mk II. I have no experience with the Audionote M6+ series which is considered pretty good.
    Audition recordings: Zero Distortion Link; Reference Components: Zero Distortion Link; Own: Lampi GG One-day-to-get: Apogee Duetta, or a horn (with Tenor 75 OTL ), Preamp to be fit in to suit the gain and drive the power amp. Analog: TBD

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