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SOLD - FOR SALE: Tom Evans Audio Design "The GROOVE" Phono Stage

Item #649386593
Info: Tom Evans Audio Design "The GROOVE" Phono Stage

Asking Price:
USD $1099.00
Retail Price: USD $3950.00
Payment method: Paypal, Cheque, Money Order
Shipping weight: 6.80 (kg) Calculate Shipping
Shipping Dimension: 45.72cm x 30.48cm x 20.32cm
Condition: 8 - Very good (?)
Date Posted: Oct 20, 17 2:06pm (PST)
Edited: Oct 31, 17 3:29pm
About Seller: glitzenberger
Seattle, WA
United States
[other classified ads]
Product Brand: Tom Evans Audio Design
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I have an outstanding Tom Evans "The GROOVE" phono stage for your consideration. It is in very good condition with a few minor scratches mostly due to polishing the plexi glass. Face plate is in excellent condition. This unit is set for loading at 100 ohms and 0.2 mV (approximately 60 db). This setting works well for most moving coil cartridges. It sounded wonderful with my Koetsu Black, Acoustical Systems Archon and my Ortofon MC10 Super. I'm only selling because I own (2) Tom Evans phono preamps and only require one.

A great review from 10Audio:
Where the Microgroove+ turns in an excellent performance, the Groove is a virtuoso, revealing layers of detail and depth and meaning to all music, whether audiophile vinyl or standard commercial pressings. It is not so much that the Groove does this or that particular thing better, although we'll talk more about that in a minute, but YOU become more involved, more a part of the performance, with the Groove. Artificial Reality takes a large step forward.

If life is in the details, then the Groove certainly brings more life to the party than any other solid-state phono preamp I can remember. The Microgroove+ gets everything right, but the Groove simply does a better job of doing the disappearing act and letting the music through. If the Groove was just better in the midrange, for example, you could probably just use instead a cartridge (or cables, or preamp, or amplifier, or speakers) that provided that particular characteristic. But it is not that simple.

When you listen to a new component, those first 15 seconds are often more valuable in judging its sound than the hours that follow. While you may not clearly perceive every nuance of the change in performance, what you immediately notice are the gross differences between the new component and the one it just replaced. When I switched to the Groove, nothing jumped out and said "check out that great bass", or "the soundstage just got deeper". There was no particular area that focused my attention on it as a large change. Further listening revealed that there are small improvements in every area. But that initial impression, one that stayed for many hours, was one of a complete picture that had the ability to bring the musicians into the listening room with clarity, delicacy, and most importantly, believability.

Picking apart the spectrum, the bass became a bit more delineated and clearly resolved, especially in the upper bass where more of the transient information is presented for the lower registers. Vocals, both male and female, became more whole and embodied; more 3-dimensional. High frequencies had an unusual degree of depth, since most of the time I hear those upper harmonics presented in a relatively 2-dimensional form. Sure, the fundamental sound of the instrument is solid and has height, width, and depth, but most of the time I hear the upper frequencies and harmonic information as lacking that same depth. The Groove did an excellent job of keeping the 3-D illusion alive throughout the musical spectrum.

So what's not to like? This may not be the ideal phono stage for those who change cartridges frequently since the input impedance is factory set. When you order your Groove, it will be configured for the loading and gain you request. Changes probably require a visit to England. That trip would be for the Groove; you would not be required to deliver it personally. Also, if you used the manufacturers link above, you saw that the site has a black background. That almost describes the Groove (and Microgroove+). The background noise of either preamplifier is well-below audibility even when listening at fairly low levels, although if you turn up the volume control to the normal listening level and leave the tonearm in the armrest, you will hear some background noise. No big deal, but not "black" either. (It is fair to note that I have never heard a truly black background from any phono preamplifier.) It is a bit quieter than Cary's very musical new PH-302 phono preamp, which has a signal-to-noise spec of -78 dB. I'd estimate the Groove's s/n to be about -80 dB, which is pretty darn good for a device that amplifies a signal 1,000 times at 60 dB (Buchsbaum's Complete Handbook of Practical Electronic Reference Data, 2nd Edition, 1978, page 5).

The Groove is worth the extra cost over the Microgroove+ for its consistent ability to bring a large measure of musical reality into your listening room. Its neutral overall presentation, excellent low-level detail and believable soundstaging will provide its owner with many hours of complete musical enjoyment.

Overall Rating: 9 LPs

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Additional Information:

Oct 23, 17 2:48pm
We compared this unit to the Auroasound VIDA phono preamp and found that they were very similar in terms of their performance with only minor differences. As you know, the Auroasound is a hot ticket now and one of the better sounding units on the market. You can buy my Tom Evans for $1300. or buy the Auroasound for $4995. They are both outstanding phono preamps.

10Audio rates The Groove as 9 out of 10LPs!

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