Preamp suggestions

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Pzwief

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Preamp suggestions
« on: 3 Apr 2015, 12:29 pm »
Looking for a preamp for my ncores. Other outputs that must connect with the preamp include dedicated headphone amp & a powered sub that needs left& right RCA outputs. My system is a network attached storage device to sonos connect to Empirical Audio Synchromesh with Dynamo power supply to Rega DAC and Paradigm Studio 20 v4 & paradigm monitor sub8. Clarity, detail, texture are important to me. I'm considerring a used Bryston  20 or 25. Budget is $1,000-$1,500. Your thoughts?  Thanks!

jtwrace

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #1 on: 3 Apr 2015, 06:08 pm »
Used Bent Audio TAP would be my #1.  After that a Tortuga LDR. 

poseidonsvoice

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #2 on: 3 Apr 2015, 06:43 pm »
Used Bent Audio TAP would be my #1.  After that a Tortuga LDR.

+1. Exactly what he said.

Best,
Anand.

roscoeiii

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #3 on: 3 Apr 2015, 06:59 pm »
But would a BENT TAP or Tortuga LDR meet the OP's needs?

Seems like 2 preamp outputs are needed in addition to a tape loop for the headphone amp (or a third preamp out if OP wants to use the preamp and not the headphone amp volume control for headphone listening).

You can use an RCA splitter at preamp output if needed, but not sure how that would interact with a passive preamp.

I have always been in the active preamp camp (tho keep checking out passives as a new model gets lots of praise; I'm on the Tortuga tour). But no passive yet has approached the detail and impact I get from my active Musical Fidelity kW linestage, which was until recently the longest lived component in my main rig (replaced by a DEQX which acts as DAC/pre and so much more). Now the kW is a component that has a tape loop, and I can report it works well with an RCA splitter.

For me, the big questions when choosing a pre, other than features are these: active vs passive and tube vs solid state.

For me, passives have often had diminished dynamics and oomph in all my attempts to implement them (and there are lots of do's and don'ts in the implementation of passive pres), compared to an active amp. But until you reach a certain price point for active amps, passives will often provide greater detail, tho with less impact than an active provides. It is only at higher prices that actives give you the best of both worlds, IME.

I've really liked jackman's SAS tube preamp with ncores and my Little Dot VI also worked well as a preamp in front of ncores as well. Tubes might give you the texture you say you'd like, more than many solid-state designs.

Pzwief

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #4 on: 3 Apr 2015, 08:45 pm »
Seems like Bent & Tortuga lack outputs I'm looking for.  Re passive preamps, I bid on a Wyred 4 Sound STP-SE, but lost out.  It's an active-passive hybrid where the active only kicks in when needed.  Any thoughts on that?  What do tubes bring to the table in a preamp?  Thanks!   

roscoeiii

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #5 on: 3 Apr 2015, 09:07 pm »
Wyred STP has gotten great reviews, but haven't heard it myself and not sure how it would work with an ncore.

Airborn

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #6 on: 5 Apr 2015, 09:34 am »
I have a Wyred $ Sound STP-SE with NCores and can report great synergy.  You won't be disappointed with that combo, I assure you.  If you prefer tubes and can live without a remote, SAS 10A is also a good choice.

dpatters

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #7 on: 5 Apr 2015, 11:21 am »
I also run Wyred 4 Sound STP-SE with ncore monoblocks.  Great combination.

Don P.

Nick77

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #8 on: 5 Apr 2015, 11:32 am »
I am running Hypex UCD modules which would come close in comparison. Currently switching from a SS passive to a tube preamp. The tubes inpart a nice soundstage. They impart kinda 3d effect that i am finding quite addictive. I think one would call it bloom, when i switch back to passive some magic is gone. Hopefully you get to audition both at some point and experience the same.

teflonmats

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #9 on: 5 Apr 2015, 02:22 pm »
Hello!!
No one has mention Coincident!! That pre are very nice together with Ncore,,From al pres I have tried I like tubes best to the Ncore. Cat are also very nice!!
Ncore are so transparent it needs to have a very good front end to perform..Try to find some of these used..

Regards
Mats.

Peter J

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #10 on: 5 Apr 2015, 04:14 pm »
I'm using a Cary SLP-03 with some NOS tubes with Ncores. I really don't have much to compare to, as I've not tried another pre with the Ncores.

I will say that this combo sounds really good to my ears. Best I can muster as to a sound description is layered...and layered and layered... but not clinical. I fancy it like a translucent onion of which I can see (hear) all the layers, for whatever that's worth. 

I imagine some of the equation is speaker choice. In this case Northcreek Rythms which use Scan-Speak drivers. At some point I'll replace those, but for now it's just a lovely setup.

maplegrovemusic

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #11 on: 5 Apr 2015, 04:28 pm »
I can add Bryston BP5 and SP2 to the list with Ncores .

Julf

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #12 on: 18 Apr 2015, 02:09 pm »
I would love to hear of a preamp that doesn't work with ncores.

Pzwief

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #13 on: 21 Apr 2015, 10:18 pm »
Anyone listin to an Emotiva XSP-1 with ncores?

zenpmd

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #14 on: 13 May 2015, 12:46 pm »
What about Benchmark's suff? I use the DAC2 HGC

Pzwief

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #15 on: 28 May 2015, 05:57 pm »
Just bought a Bryston BP-25 with MPS-1 power supply.  Won't receive it for a couple weeks.

RDavidson

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #16 on: 28 May 2015, 07:11 pm »
Seems like Bent & Tortuga lack outputs I'm looking for.  Re passive preamps, I bid on a Wyred 4 Sound STP-SE, but lost out.  It's an active-passive hybrid where the active only kicks in when needed.  Any thoughts on that?  What do tubes bring to the table in a preamp?  Thanks!


Yes, it is a hybrid. More succinctly, it is a passive input stage with an active buffer output stage. The buffer is always active, but provides zero gain until you crank the volume control beyond unity gain (ie the point where your source's voltage output is not enough to drive the amp / speakers any louder without a gain in voltage being fed to the amp).

ijscobar

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Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #17 on: 3 Jul 2015, 10:37 am »
A Relaixed II

firedog

Re: Preamp suggestions
« Reply #18 on: 4 Jul 2015, 03:51 pm »
Look at Vinnie Rossie's new LIO line. You can order one that functions only as a pre (so you don't pay for additional functions you don't want). He can set it up as a Tube pre, a passive Autoformer VC, or a standard pre with a high quality resistor based volume control.  He even has a board that gives you both tubes and an AVC, and you can choose to run it as tubes + AVC or just the AVC. Multiple inputs are also an option.