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PostPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:29 pm 
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Voodoo Funk wrote:
Given your criteria I don't think there is anything within your budget that is worth looking at...my suggestion is, rather than make all these at best, sideway moves, is to save up and get something superlative that will give you years of excellent performance. 8)



+1 that

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:03 pm 
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Voodoo Funk wrote:
Given your criteria I don't think there is anything within your budget that is worth looking at...my suggestion is, rather than make all these at best, sideway moves, is to save up and get something superlative that will give you years of excellent performance. 8)

Thank you for that.
That will be the wisest move i could make right now.
And thanks to all for your input in this thread.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:38 am 
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Chipmunk1957 wrote:
Voodoo Funk wrote:
Given your criteria I don't think there is anything within your budget that is worth looking at...my suggestion is, rather than make all these at best, sideway moves, is to save up and get something superlative that will give you years of excellent performance. 8)

Thank you for that.
That will be the wisest move i could make right now.
And thanks to all for your input in this thread.

+1.

You made the correct decision.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:11 am 
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I ordered one of these passive amps and love it - http://www.khozmo.com/ The stepped attenuator has a really satisfying thunk as you adjust volume.

Run mainly FLAC through an upsampling DAC, bigger ss amp (class A for the first 30w) and JBL 4333. I moved to this from a rdac and an integrated amp by the same company. The passive preamp and poweramp combo feels a bit more open and spacious. I find the upsampling is a bit crisper and less fatiguing at high volume with the vintage horns.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:09 am 
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While I appreciate Voodoo's logic, and in most instances would agree that a sideways move isn't usually the most desirable, I'm not so sure that's the situation here. The Canary preamp, when in production, was $2000USD, which would make it somewhere between $2500-$3000 Cdn. But it's not only the price that suggests the Canary is a step up from your old Bryston, or at least very different sounding from the Bryston. Older Bryston gear was known for a bright, forward sound; at least any time I heard it it was. And a Bryston pre/power combo is 2x the brightness! The 601 mkii, on the other hand, is smoother, richer, and more tonally and harmonically accurate. I think you'll find a very big difference between the sound of the two preamps, and I'd be surprised if you didn't prefer the Canary to the Bryston (unless you actually like a forward sound). The price on the Canary is pretty good, especially if it's in good shape as the ad says. You might even be able to bargain it down a bit. I'm not saying you should absolutely go for it, but I think it is still worth serious consideration. Having it would really highlight the difference between the Bryston ss sound and the Canary tube sound. Don't dismiss it too quickly.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:27 am 
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I recently picked up a Dehaviland tube pre and vintage Luxman tube power amp. I sold an excellent Moon 600i Solid state of course int amp. I couldn't be happier with my new sound.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:29 am 
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EL34 wrote:
While I appreciate Voodoo's logic, and in most instances would agree that a sideways move isn't usually the most desirable, I'm not so sure that's the situation here. The Canary preamp, when in production, was $2000USD, which would make it somewhere between $2500-$3000 Cdn. But it's not only the price that suggests the Canary is a step up from your old Bryston, or at least very different sounding from the Bryston. Older Bryston gear was known for a bright, forward sound; at least any time I heard it it was. And a Bryston pre/power combo is 2x the brightness! The 601 mkii, on the other hand, is smoother, richer, and more tonally and harmonically accurate. I think you'll find a very big difference between the sound of the two preamps, and I'd be surprised if you didn't prefer the Canary to the Bryston (unless you actually like a forward sound). The price on the Canary is pretty good, especially if it's in good shape as the ad says. You might even be able to bargain it down a bit. I'm not saying you should absolutely go for it, but I think it is still worth serious consideration. Having it would really highlight the difference between the Bryston ss sound and the Canary tube sound. Don't dismiss it too quickly.


"Also i would really like to have balanced outputs with at least one balanced input."

I think that alone disqualifies the Canary...not to mention how old it is at this point...would need some work for certain to bring it up to specs.

As for passive preamps...never heard one I like...usually lack of dynamics rendering them somewhat lifeless has been my experience.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:42 am 
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Maybe, Voodoo. But a couple of posts later Chip writes:
"Well after talking to a trusted member who pm'd me i am going to rework my parameters.
Balanced ok but not necessarily needed."

As I mentioned, I'm not saying he must or should get the Canary. But because it has such a different sound profile from the 12B, it might be just the thing he's looking for; it'll add a bit of that tube magic to his system. And if it adds something of the magic he feels he's missing, getting it for that price would be a real bonus. If Chip wants to save for something superlative, well that's great too. Many of us have preamps that cost a good deal more than $700, or even $2000USD! But if he saves for a superlative preamp, to really get the most from it he'll also have to save for a superlative source, a superlative amp, and a superlative pair of speakers. And in the end, that's a lot of superlative dollars. All fine and dandy if you've got that kind of money and want to take the hobby to the superlative level. The Canary is no slouch on the quality scale. All silver, point-to-point wiring, for example. Still worth a second thought in my mind.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:48 am 
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I'd be curious to know from Chip why he initially wanted Balanced Inputs and Outputs.

Personally I wouldn't buy a preamp without them...my EAR 912 has 2 Balanced Inputs and 2 Balanced Outputs...both my Tube Monoblocks and Avantgarde Horns with Balanced Inputs are 25ft away from the preamp...so Balanced Outputs was essential.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:52 am 
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Fair enough, Voodoo. 25' is some distance to be sure. I don't use balanced cabling, but my interconnects are just 3' long.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:05 am 
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EL34 wrote:
While I appreciate Voodoo's logic, and in most instances would agree that a sideways move isn't usually the most desirable, I'm not so sure that's the situation here. The Canary preamp, when in production, was $2000USD, which would make it somewhere between $2500-$3000 Cdn. But it's not only the price that suggests the Canary is a step up from your old Bryston, or at least very different sounding from the Bryston. Older Bryston gear was known for a bright, forward sound; at least any time I heard it it was. And a Bryston pre/power combo is 2x the brightness! The 601 mkii, on the other hand, is smoother, richer, and more tonally and harmonically accurate. I think you'll find a very big difference between the sound of the two preamps, and I'd be surprised if you didn't prefer the Canary to the Bryston (unless you actually like a forward sound). The price on the Canary is pretty good, especially if it's in good shape as the ad says. You might even be able to bargain it down a bit. I'm not saying you should absolutely go for it, but I think it is still worth serious consideration. Having it would really highlight the difference between the Bryston ss sound and the Canary tube sound. Don't dismiss it too quickly.

I do appreciate yor input and thoughts EL34 but i dont think the seller shares your enthusiasm.
I responded to the ad last evening requesting some pics of the actual unit and as of now have yet to hear back.
And VF...i rethought the Balanced ins/outs and they are not that necessary to my needs.
I think i need to give this some more clearheaded thought when my tinnitus is not putting me in fight or flight mode. :roll:

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:25 am 
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What matters to me about these things are two basic questions:

1) Can you source drive your system to over-loud volumes directly?
2) Is the input impedance of the amp high or low?
3) How many sources do you have?

The first question means your preamp only need not amplify the signal. Your looking solely at attenuation, and you'll have solutions that are cheap and cheerful.

The second question, if the impedance is high, means a volume control alone ought to do just fine. Otherwise, you will need a buffer on the output of the volume control to lower impedance.

The third question is there to ask if you need some sort of switching box before the volume control.

I'd look at the unity gain buffer from McCormack -- I think it is discontinued now, so should be available for cheap.
[url]
https://www.stereophile.com/solidpreamps/521/index.html[/url]


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 6:53 am 
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A few years ago when I had a 3B st and thought it sounded a bit grainy on the top I bought a used used AI Modulus tube pre and it made a hugely positive difference. Bold smooth yet deep and detailed. Best match I'd had before changing amps. I paid around $800 for that pre


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 3:28 pm 
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Well..
After a couple more weeks of listening to the Bryston combo i have and getting some great feedback and suggestions i think im staying with the 12b pre until the stars align for the right purchase.
Sometimes its like throwing darts at a dartboard.
Changing kit can be hit and miss.
At least i know what my kit sounds like compared to what I've had and i do enjoy it completely.
The audio bug is a voracious one to say the least!

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:26 am 
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Voodoo Funk wrote:
Given your criteria I don't think there is anything within your budget that is worth looking at...my suggestion is, rather than make all these at best, sideway moves, is to save up and get something superlative that will give you years of excellent performance. 8)


Voodoo speaks the truth. Sometimes a real upgrade involves going seriously upmarket. Sure you might find that unicorn going sideways but more likely not. Most of the equipment you see listed on CAM is from sideways experiments that just didn't deliver the expected benefits. Of course there is the whole system synergy equation or underdog performer which would prove me dead wrong, but in general, I think you need to make a dramatic upgrade to see a real improvement. You'll still have to deal with system matching though, so try to stick to purchases that will have a decent shot at cost recovery if you need to resell.

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