Phono Preamp Recommendations to compliment Nighthawk?
Having heard how good vinyl can sound with Raven Audio, I want to step up my phono preamp. But each piece of kit has its own unique sound and qualities. Any recommendations from the Raven Heads as to best preamp (USA) around $1000 to fit with my Klipsch LaScalas and Nighthawk? The turntable and cart will be upgraded AFTER I choose amp to match my Nighthawk and LaScalas. (Now I own U-turn Orbit with Ortofon Blue...its OK until....I go to VPI)
I've recently added Schiit Mani units on my solid state receivers and it was a good result. Inputs from Dual 606,607 and 1219 tables. Cant speak to the tube amp just yet, but their "stuff" has impressed for far less than a g note.
Thanks Joey, have looked at Schiit stuff before. Does indeed get great reviews for the very reasonable prices. Was also looking at Parasound Halo Jr, 3. I'm wanting to know I've done all I can do on that piece before I move to next weakest link. Lehman box also in the running. Channel Island is in the front running too. If Raven had one I'd probably already own it.
I use a Ray Samuels F117 phono stage with a SoundSmith cartridge on a VPI Classic turntable.
I use a tavish vintage tube phone stage amp that is in your price range.
Now THAT is a fabulous setup~! That turntable is fabulous, and I have a custom made high output MC Soundsmith Paua myself. So I know what Peter is capable of.
I just have a Zephyr MIMC *. Nothing special.
Hi. I'm currently using a Cambridge Audio Alva Duo ($300). Works with either MM or MC cartridges. Very quiet. Good soundstage for the cost. Happy so far. Have read good things about Simaudio "Moon 110LP v2" phono preamplifier ($475). Sutherland has a KC Vibe Phono Stage for around $900. Also, Soundsmith cartridges start around $400 for their Otello MI.
Some places like Audio Advice have 30 day return policy. Not sure about "Moon".
My search for the ideal phono preamp continues....(target price $1000)....I decided to avoid any tube phono amps because I need quiet background since my room is so quiet. Any noise is amplified especially with the Klipsch Lascalas. They make the most out of every watt but also dredge the bottom of the circuits noise floor. The Raven Blackhawk is totally exceptional in everyway except those darn Lascalas are so efficient they give me xray audio ears into not only the music but in those "gaps" in the tunes there it is. My guess is the (mainly one channel) ghost hum is at aprox. 500hz. Not sure, need to check. So I've narrowed down to Parasound Jr+ 3, Coastal Island PEQ 1 , and Sutherland. Long process but that's how I discovered Raven!!! MUST BUY MORE TUBES....repeat...MUST BUY MORE TUBES....
For the last month I have been listening to what will eventually become the new Raven Audio Turntable - and OH BOY... is this thing going to be good! I have a 5-figure retail German designed Hanss turntable with a $2K cartridge and with the incredible little Hana H.O. moving coil cartridge that will become standard fair on the new table/tonearm - it SLAYS my old system. Darn it~! Now I have to sell what is a beautiful piece of audio art. It sounds good too, but having what will be a new Raven Audio product that sells for under $2K... put it into the dirt like this... what the heck~!
This is pretty exciting stuff, and usually we don't post stuff about product development, but this one... it's going to be incredible. We all know the final product is going to be even better. As usual for Raven Audio, it's going to be another "better than the rest at this price" component. I cannot wait until the world sees and hears - and owns the new Raven Audio Avian Series level turntable. This is such a wonderfully revealing product... it kept me up until after 3:30am this morning.
I went through all the regular A-Level grade test recordings... The Wall, Wishing You Were Here, all the Linda Ronstadt Nelson Riddle stuff - then the outstanding "Conciones de mi Padre" & "Mas Conciones", the first three Zaz records, the awesome Sublime "40oz. to Freedom" platter, several really great old country records such as George Jones' 50 Years of Hits, The Judds first two albums, which are really open wonderful recordings and Vern Gosdin's breathtaking "Chiseled in Stone" album.
The Trinity, Texas listening room is starting to get really fabulous sounding, but crowded. Of course that's precisely what makes it so good... all that excess crap~! It's getting to where Gabrielle has to come and grab me sometimes reminding me that... "Dave, life occurs elsewhere also." Um, maybe not at my age. Though I do need to grab a fishing rod every now and then.
Another point of importance is that Raven Audio will also come out with a phono stage and line stage to go with the new turntable. The prototypes are being built as I am typing this.
The prototype shown in the pictures is just that, a rough but incredibly good sounding prototype. The finished production version should resemble this...
I'm so glad I couldn't make up my mind on a new turntable and phono stage!!!! It is the next place I need to upgrade and Dave's suggested (speculated) price point just so happens to hit my "budget" sweet spot. I'm totally all in on Raven quality and value, so anticipation builds. Finally I'll own a table and phono amp that fits with the quality of the rest of my system. Keep us up to date with developments!