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Thread: An interesting article about phono ready budget amps

  1. #1
    Super Moderator Site Moderator JohnMichael's Avatar
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    An interesting article about phono ready budget amps

    For those needing a budget system, office system or a second system I found this lineup to be interesting.

    Stereo Amplifiers For Your Turntable Setup Under $500

    Stereo amplifiers for your turntable setup under $500

    In a typical turntable setup, the stereo power amplifier is the electronic device responsible to increase the low-power audio signal coming from your record player or pre-amp and deliver it to the loudspeakers. With the multitude of options on the market today, choosing the right amplifier to pair with your speakers can be an intimidating process. Depending on whether you have/want or not a separate phono pre-amp in your audio playback chain, you need to look for a power amplifier with or without a built-in phono stage. Usually, modern inexpensive models don't have an integrated pre-amp and phono inputs to connect a turntable, but if they do, they are probably low-quality. If you opt for one of these, you'll definitely need a separate phono pre-amp to get the most out of your turntable. We presented some of the best affordable ones in a previous article. However, in the list below we included a few good stereo amplifiers that feature phono inputs. It's also unquestionable that if you research and put some serious work into finding a used vintage amplifier in good condition, it will probably outperform most modern devices in the same price range. But as we said, this can be a long, time consuming task because they are not available to purchase at any time to everyone. If you're about to buy a new stereo amplifier and you're not really familiar with technical specs and how they work, you can easily find great articles explaining them with a simple google search (here's one). Also, if you have the possibility, it's recommended to try out and listen to the chosen unit (with a system similar to yours) before buying. We won't get into details here, but we want to stress that despite conventional wisdom, more power (wattage - the only spec that some shoppers consider) doesn't necessarily mean louder and better sound. So, here is a list of some good amplifiers you can incorporate in your vinyl setup, ranging from about $30 to $500 USD.
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    JohnMichael
    Vinyl Rega Planar 2, Incognito rewire, Deepgroove subplatter, ceramic bearing, Michell Technoweight, Rega 24V motor, TTPSU, FunkFirm Achroplat platter, Michael Lim top and bottom braces, 2 Rega feet and one RDC cone, Benz MC Gold, Fanfare 3/PSU 1.
    Digital
    Sony SCD-XA5400ES SACD/cd SID mat, Marantz SA 8001
    Int. Amp Krell S-300i
    Speaker
    JBL Studio 530's/Sanus SF22 stands
    Cables
    AQ SPKR and AQ XLR and IC

  2. #2
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    I use a Dayton DTA-100a with my Monitor Audio S1 speakers in my bedroom. I paid $52 on sale from $100. This little digital amp sounds awesome. While it is not the last word in detail and resolution, it has very good air and transparency with deep powerful bass and a wide sound stage. I run it with a Denon 1910 DVD/CD player. I tried it with one of my higher end DAC's and it really responded with better detail, clarity and a much wider sound stage.

    You have to be careful with the power ratings of all those little digital amps. Those peak power numbers are typically at 10% THD, so the usable power is about 1/2 of the stated peak.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Site Moderator JohnMichael's Avatar
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    Good information blackraven. I thought the article might be a help to all those new hobbyists just starting out but at some of the low prices they might be fun to try out.
    JohnMichael
    Vinyl Rega Planar 2, Incognito rewire, Deepgroove subplatter, ceramic bearing, Michell Technoweight, Rega 24V motor, TTPSU, FunkFirm Achroplat platter, Michael Lim top and bottom braces, 2 Rega feet and one RDC cone, Benz MC Gold, Fanfare 3/PSU 1.
    Digital
    Sony SCD-XA5400ES SACD/cd SID mat, Marantz SA 8001
    Int. Amp Krell S-300i
    Speaker
    JBL Studio 530's/Sanus SF22 stands
    Cables
    AQ SPKR and AQ XLR and IC

  4. #4
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    Although a bit over $500.00 the Cambridge Audio SR20 is a neat package complete with phono and built in DAC.

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