Is there a better bargain than the $56 Nobsound Passive Preamp?

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OzarkTom

As someone here mentioned the Schitt Sys, it is only $49 And this OL Switcher is $45.

https://www.jdslabs.com/products/177/ol-switcher/

It will be interesting to compare all three, these American versions are RCA only. If RCA is the only format you are using, these might be even better buys than the Nobsound. One owner of both the Schitt and OL Switcher said they sound the same, but liked the build of the OL switcher better. I imagine they sound as good as the Nobsound. I like the looks of the OL Switcher the best. Now for more purchases. This hobby is getting a lot more fun with these C&C passive preamps. You can buy several for less than $200.

I have compared both RCA and XLR out on the Nobsound and they are very close in SQ.

maplegrovemusic

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Anyone try A Mackie Big nob ? or any others geared as studio monitor controls ?
Is there a better Alps pot model out there , than the Nobsound ?
Might try the stepped model Nobsound if people think it will be a improvement over the alps Nobsound .

maplegrovemusic

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Anyone else notice when using a passive pre that all recordings are playable without distortion ?
Recordings that would provoke brightness when using a pre with gain , no longer are so offensive . I find myself listening to recordings I won't with many regular preamps .

wushuliu

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As someone here mentioned the Schitt Sys, it is only $49 And this OL Switcher is $45.

https://www.jdslabs.com/products/177/ol-switcher/

It will be interesting to compare all three, these American versions are RCA only. If RCA is the only format you are using, these might be even better buys than the Nobsound. One owner of both the Schitt and OL Switcher said they sound the same, but liked the build of the OL switcher better. I imagine they sound as good as the Nobsound. I like the looks of the OL Switcher the best. Now for more purchases. This hobby is getting a lot more fun with these C&C passive preamps. You can buy several for less than $200.

I have compared both RCA and XLR out on the Nobsound and they are very close in SQ.

The OL Switcher would be a good choice to compare against the NObsound since it also just has a 10k pot.

OzarkTom

Anyone else notice when using a passive pre that all recordings are playable without distortion ?
Recordings that would provoke brightness when using a pre with gain , no longer are so offensive . I find myself listening to recordings I won't with many regular preamps .

Thank you for sharing this. I have had a hunch that preamps were the harshness problem, not the sound of digital.

fredgarvin

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Anyone else notice when using a passive pre that all recordings are playable without distortion ?
Recordings that would provoke brightness when using a pre with gain , no longer are so offensive . I find myself listening to recordings I won't with many regular preamps .

Since going to HE horns, it became apparent that gain is the enemy. Of course, amplifier choice plays into that as well. My preamp had switchable gain and the lowest setting, supposedly 0 gain, was the best sounding. With HE, differences in cables etc. is very apparent. I bought a Nobsound 3 input 2 out put, one volume controlled, to run a sub with my tube amp. For S&G I tried it as a volume control with my SS amp and was amazed at the improved transparency and with less stridency than my preamp. So, I'm happy.

charmerci

Oh my. Well, you guys have convinced me to try out the OL Switcher.
Though, I won't be able to do so until March.

RDavidson

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Anyone try A Mackie Big nob ? or any others geared as studio monitor controls ?
Is there a better Alps pot model out there , than the Nobsound ?
Might try the stepped model Nobsound if people think it will be a improvement over the alps Nobsound .

Stepped attenuators (resistor ladders) are FAR more precise than any type of smooth pot, including Alps. You don't get "infinite" volume settings with stepped attenuators, but that's actually part of the problem with smooth pots especially when used in their lower range. Channel to channel separation and level matching is near impossible up to a certain threshold. It's like a faucet with a single knob. Try to make the water trickle at a consistent warm temperature and rate ; Really can't be done. But open the valve up a bit to allow water to flow more freely and voila!, consistent temperature and rate. So, if you have ideal gain in your setup, a variable pot can work great...if you can "open up" the pot beyond the threshold where channel separation and volume balance can be trouble.

Stepped resistors provide fixed resistance at each setting for both channels separately. This is much more controlled and precise (especially when high quality resistors are used). This is where these types of pots can get pricey. But, you don't have to deal with quite the variables that smooth pots have.

OzarkTom

It will  be interesting on what price a preamp that beats these cheap passives will cost.
 
:popcorn:

wushuliu

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Stepped attenuators (resistor ladders) are FAR more precise than any type of smooth pot, including Alps. You don't get "infinite" volume settings with stepped attenuators, but that's actually part of the problem with smooth pots especially when used in their lower range. Channel to channel separation and level matching is near impossible up to a certain threshold. It's like a faucet with a single knob. Try to make the water trickle at a consistent warm temperature and rate ; Really can't be done. But open the valve up a bit to allow water to flow more freely and voila!, consistent temperature and rate. So, if you have ideal gain in your setup, a variable pot can work great...if you can "open up" the pot beyond the threshold where channel separation and volume balance can be trouble.

Stepped resistors provide fixed resistance at each setting for both channels separately. This is much more controlled and precise (especially when high quality resistors are used). This is where these types of pots can get pricey. But, you don't have to deal with quite the variables that smooth pots have.

That's why my go to for years has been one of these:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/DACT-Type-SMD-Stepped-Attenuator-21-step-volume-control-/190844814249

I've compared against Alps, Bourns, Nobles, Panasonic, the Dale stepped pots etc etc and these DACT knock offs beat them all. That's why I'm hoping Nobsound has a version using these pots, and not just Tilsbury. 21 steps is not quite enough sometimes though is the problem. The jump in volume between positions could be smaller.

I am all about simplicity and the minimizing of elements in the chain as an important factor in sound quality (with exceptions). A high quality pot just by itself can do wonders.

OzarkTom

That's why my go to for years has been one of these:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/DACT-Type-SMD-Stepped-Attenuator-21-step-volume-control-/190844814249

I've compared against Alps, Bourns, Nobles, Panasonic, the Dale stepped pots etc etc and these DACT knock offs beat them all. That's why I'm hoping Nobsound has a version using these pots, and not just Tilsbury. 21 steps is not quite enough sometimes though is the problem. The jump in volume between positions could be smaller.

Hdre is one on Ebay flor $99.99. Four inputs and two outputs. Sounds like a very good deal if tou want a Dact passive.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/SMD-Dact-type-Stepped-attenuator-Passive-Preamplifier/192132688811?hash=item2cbc002bab:g:FI8AAOxySE9Q50ON:rk:1:pf:0

Folsom

That's why my go to for years has been one of these:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/DACT-Type-SMD-Stepped-Attenuator-21-step-volume-control-/190844814249

I've compared against Alps, Bourns, Nobles, Panasonic, the Dale stepped pots etc etc and these DACT knock offs beat them all. That's why I'm hoping Nobsound has a version using these pots, and not just Tilsbury. 21 steps is not quite enough sometimes though is the problem. The jump in volume between positions could be smaller.

I am all about simplicity and the minimizing of elements in the chain as an important factor in sound quality (with exceptions). A high quality pot just by itself can do wonders.

^

Blows me away that garbage like Alps can still get attention a decade or two later than the craze.

OzarkTom

^

Blows me away that garbage like Alps can still get attention a decade or two later than the craze.

 :o Wow, I must get one of these if they blow away the Alps. Maybe IFI should use them also instead of Alps. No preamp would ever beat  this at any cost.

Folsom

Do you have a soldering iron, a drill, punch, and wire stripper? That's all it takes. And maybe a box from eBay.

OzarkTom

Do you have a soldering iron, a drill, punch, and wire stripper? That's all it takes. And maybe a box from eBay.

The one on Ebay for $99.99 will work. Not a DIy'er. I could use several inputs and and Two outputs.

OzarkTom

For those that prefer a remote passive, check these out. Not cheap, but cheaper than most remote preamps.

https://www.khozmo.com/

Wayne1

If you guys have the parts selected, I would be happy to assemble them for you.

wushuliu

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Blows me away that garbage like Alps can still get attention a decade or two later than the craze.

But this is assuming the Nobsound is even using genuine Alps. For all we know it's a knock-off, and like the fake DACT, they perform better than they should.

Quote
Hdre is one on Ebay flor $99.99. Four inputs and two outputs. Sounds like a very good deal if tou want a Dact passive.

Looks like a good option. Hopefully more vendors offer some.

OzarkTom

I talked to Rex last night. He wants me to help sell his Tortuga for him.  So if anyone here needs one, I will be listing it soon n the Trading Post.

OzarkTom

It sounds like everyone here can improve their amp/preamp with a Dact volume control.

Rebview: http://dact.com/html/ct2_at_review33_com.html

For a DIY'er passive.

http://kotiweb.kotiportti.fi/audiovideo/DIY/preamp1/