I am using a V1 not a V2 but the feed back should still apply
Is anyone bypassing the pot entirely to go with a standalone preamp?
Yes I am bypassing vol pot, I am using a Prometheus TVC.
see 112 pg. thread: http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=31621.0
Currently standard model $360.00 on sale no shipping: http://www.promitheusaudio.com/sale.html
Plenty of ACers (w other amps) use a TVC from them and are tickled pink, my self included. When used with my Virtue One's about 2-3 pm on the stepped vol. gives me "loud" (my spkrs. are 89 db) music so there are many settings below that for quieter music or late night settings.
When I use my tube linestage in the mix I can achieve higher volumes at lower settings on the TVC and gain additional sonic benifits, but it was part of my tube DAC anyway so no addition $$ were invested IMS. A TVC for 360. is insanely cheap. Most start at a grand.
If I had to choose between the tube linestage and the TVC, I would choose the TVC. Do a search for Promitheus TVC and ask around the circle for more feedback.
the TVC improves every area of the presentation period, but it does so with a slight sacrafice of PRAT and dynamics- it is slight and most people could live with it. I have gained back much of this w revealing ICs and SCs done DIY w magwire. read CHEAP
Anyway my tube-linestage is currently out of the mix- needs minor repair and I am not missing it for 4 weeks and in no rush.
If my linestage was not also a DAC, I would have a TVC for 360. and seek a very simple low cost tube pre ( I do not know the names but some came up in the Virtue threads prior to the Virtue Circle starting)
say 310. for a V1, 360. for a TVC, say 2-300. for a tube pre and you are in very serious HE audio.
for 1/5 to 1/10 the price.
ck my prior posts and the threads they are under much good info was all ready out there prior to the Virtue Circle starting.