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 Post subject: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:16 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 8:11 am
Posts: 14
Location: London, ON, CA
Hi there
I am using the basic Pro-ject phono box with my Xpression 3 table and 2M Red cartridge.
Was thinking of doing a modest upgrade to the Yaqin MS22b. Does anyone think this will make
a big difference in my system?
I am using the Yaqin MS-20L integrated.
Also thinking about upgrading to the 2M Blue or Bronze cartridge.
Thanks!!


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 1:13 pm
Posts: 169
Location: sherwood park, AB, CA
I have the exact same amp and the Yaqin MS22b.I like it but Im not sure how it compares to Pro-ject phono box.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 05, 2006 4:40 pm
Posts: 60
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
I had the same phono stage and thought it was pretty good untill I listened to the Sutherland Ph3D. Battery powered. about $1000. Killer piece that completely destroyed the Project and turned my vinyl into unimpeded glory. Really worth the cash. Used in a lot of reviewer's reference systems. You can get them at American Sound.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 4:13 pm
Posts: 3627
Location: Fisher Branch, MB, CA
I like my ARC PH3 phono amp, it goes for around $750. I compared it to the phono stage in my Forte model 2, which was supposed to sound pretty good. It does but the ARC had a much better soundstage, with more depth and detail.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:56 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 5:36 pm
Posts: 63
Location: mississauga, ON, CA
I have the same amp and changed my MS-22b to a Jasmine LP2.0 SE preamp as i really needed to support a SAE MC cartridge. I am quite happy with the change and it cost me $570 delivered.I took in to consideration that i also changed the cartridge to a moving coil at the same time.The ability to audition was not there so i did what i have done before and read as many reviews and opinions as possible. I changed the power cord on the Jasmine immediately as that was highly recommended. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:51 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 4:13 pm
Posts: 3627
Location: Fisher Branch, MB, CA
I added a cinemag SUT to my phono preamp so I could use a Denon DL-103R mc cartridge. I think that there are quite a few very nice phono amps in the near $1000 range.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:50 pm
Posts: 9238
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Once you start blowing big coin on phono sections, you should also spend equivalently on the remainder of the system. For example, if you have a $500 integrated, you won't get the most out of a $1000 phono section.

A car analogy would be like putting Eagle ZR tires on a Fiat 500. It will work great, and that fiat will drive better than it ever did, but you're not getting the most out of the tire....


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:27 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 4:13 pm
Posts: 3627
Location: Fisher Branch, MB, CA
The biggest improvement I made to my vinyl system has been a good RCM. I have upgraded to an Opera Consonance RCM from Grant Fidelity and it has been working great but even the Spin Clean RCM worked well.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:53 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2011 7:26 pm
Posts: 1090
Location: Airdrie, AB
I too upgraded from the Project Phono Box II, and from the 2M Red on my Pro-Ject Expression III Classic. Went with the Jasmine LP 2.0 Mk 2 as it fit the price point and I am quite happy with it.

I read as much as I could stand on cart upgrades. If you want to stick with the 2M series I would suggest the Bronze over Blue. I ended up with a Dynavector 10x5 and was bowled over by the improvement.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 9:59 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 12:36 pm
Posts: 93
Location: Burlington, ON, CA
I have heard your phono stage and I think to make it worth your while you need to go with tubes. Lots and lots of good used phono stages out there and new ones as well at affordable prices. Assuming it is in proper working order and setup for your cartridge a tube phono section will be much better than what you are using.

-- 10 Mar 2012 17:59 --

I have heard your phono stage and I think to make it worth your while you need to go with tubes. Lots and lots of good used phono stages out there and new ones as well at affordable prices. Assuming it is in proper working order and setup for your cartridge a tube phono section will be much better than what you are using.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 11:26 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 04, 2005 7:11 pm
Posts: 187
Location: trail, BC, CA
How do you like your Yaquin Integrated? If you impressed with it, go for the preamp, after all, it's not that expensive. You can always sell it if you tire of it.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:58 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 7:47 am
Posts: 5
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
I'd recommend the Graham Slee Gram Amp 2 SE. Can be had for $399 new, and is the best MM stage I've heard under $1000. I've used the combination of the Xpression, 2M Red (though the Blue is another 50% improvement again and the Black is just incredible), and the Slee and been continually blown away. Easily the best bang-for-buck under $1000.


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 Post subject: Re: Phono preamp upgrade
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:58 pm 
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Joined: Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:02 am
Posts: 472
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Lensman wrote:
I had the same phono stage and thought it was pretty good untill I listened to the Sutherland Ph3D. Battery powered. about $1000. Killer piece that completely destroyed the Project and turned my vinyl into unimpeded glory. Really worth the cash. Used in a lot of reviewer's reference systems. You can get them at American Sound.


+1 for the PH3d. Just got one too and really, very, nice!

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