Passive Preamps

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Joe, Aug 8, 2002.

  1. Joe

    Joe Stunt Coordinator

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    Are there any good passive preamps to be had for $600? Also, is it really worth the effort of using one in conjuction with a HT receiver and a separate 2 channel amp?

    Thanks for your input.
     
  2. Rob Rodier

    Rob Rodier Supporting Actor

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    Creek has a few that are significantly less. I can't get specific unfortunately.

    I think that a preamp is without a doubt a worthwhile investment. Pasive or active is the real question. If I had $600 I would go with a quality used active unit. IMO active preamps are more dynamic and provide a better overall sound. You should listen to a few before making a decision. Also they have discusions on this topic every other day over in the asylum. Great source for info.

    -rob
     
  3. Joe

    Joe Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the info Rob.[​IMG]
     
  4. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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    I use a passive preamp. Built it for around $300 in parts. It's based around a pair of transformers, instead of a series of resistors like most passive units. Because of this, it doesn't suffer from the dynamics/drive problems of 'normal' passive preamps. In fact, it works better at lower volumes, which is exactly the opposite of resistor-based preamps. Because of the way a transformer works, the source device 'sees' a very high input impedance, the destination device thinks it is being driven by a very low output impedance, and the result is very fast, dynamic sound.
    Of course, you still need to make sure the rest of your system can handle a passive, but transformer-based passives are much more forgiving in this regard than resistor based passives.
    If you have a dealer for ASL (Antique Sound Labs) nearby, try out their transformer based passive, it should be pretty decent and it's within your budget, around $300 I think. I've heard this unit briefly, and I liked it. www.divertech.com is the North American distributor for ASL, you could try emailing them to find out about a dealer in your area.
     
  5. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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    Forgot to answer the next part of your question:

     
  6. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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    Saurav,
    I think EVS, Electronic Visionary Systems, sells some for reasonable $ also.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. David*RT

    David*RT Stunt Coordinator

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    It used to be the case that active preamps were better than passive.
    But in recent times, there are some extremely nice and neutral passive preamps.
    The one I recommend is the award winning $500 Little Wonder passive preamp. You must ask for the Home Theater bypass so you can hook it up to the receiver..........To match this unit, you'd need to spend several thousand dollars in an active preamp to match it.
    With regards, to getting a preamp. Absolutely! Receivers don't have that type of performance due to their complexity.
    Only do it, however, if you listen to many cds (and have a top cd player to boot) and are anal retentive about subtle nuances that shouldn't be in any way colored.........If you watch dvds, FM/AM tuner or TV, save your money as the receiver will do a fine job (of course that's if you have a top-rated receiver...Marantz & Denon).
     

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