I need a solid, but inexpensive phono preamp

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Tim Hoover, Dec 30, 2003.

  1. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    I'm putting together a minimalist office system and need some recommendations on good cheap phono stages. Associated equipment includes a Music Hall MMF 2.1 turntable and Cambridge A300 integrated amp powering a pair of Alesis Monitor Ones.

    I'm presuming the Radio Shack "Little Rat" will be thrown out here, but I'm also curious if anyone has had any experience w/ the custom offerings at www.phonopreamps.com or with any of the supposed pro offerings by ART offered through instrument stores.

    Any other recommendations are also welcome. I'd like to keep this in the $50 range if at all possible...
     
  2. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    NAD has one that usually sells for about $100. They is one almost always listed on e-bay.

    No personal experience, but NAD does have a pretty good reputation. I have been toying with getting one for years, but I fear that my turntable (and older B&O) will not really let me enjoy my vinyl properly, and a new turntable is not on the current list of things I MUST buy.

    Good luck.

    BGL
     
  3. gregD

    gregD Second Unit

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    I run a Parasound PPH-100 off a Rega Planar 3.

    Rock-solid performer @ $120.
     
  4. Scott_N

    Scott_N Second Unit

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    Needledoctor has the Btech BT26 for $50 and the Btech BT926 for $70. I don't how good they are but maybe they will work for you. I think your best bet would be to try and find a used preamp on ebay or audiogon.
     
  5. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the suggestions, fellas. I think the NAD and Parasound units may be a bit out of my pricerange. I'm going to part with a whopping $25 and go with the Little Rat from Radio Shack, which has quite a cult following. If that doesn't work out for me, then I'll probably invest more dough and spring for either the NAD or Parasound.
     
  6. BradZ

    BradZ Stunt Coordinator

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    Creek used to make an exceptional little phono pre-amp that I think was also in the $100 range. check www.audioadvisor.com to see if they still carry it.

    good luck.
     
  7. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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    See if you can find a NAD 1020 (preamp) or 3020 (receiver) on eBay. These are several years old and not very high wattage, so they sell pretty cheap. They reputedly have the best phono stages that NAD ever produced in any of their gear.

    The Little Rat is phenomenal for the $25 it costs (I still have mine). If you can't find it at RS, let me know. I might have made some mods to it to get it to work better with my preamp that I should probably undo before giving it to someone else.
     

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