Phono Pre-Amp Suggestions

Danarchy

Member
Happy new year all,

My Pro-Ject preamp has started to fail, so im in the market for a replacement.

Its certainly a minefield out there, so im hoping for some suggestions please!

Setup: Pro-Ject Debut Carbon EVO (2M RED), DENON PMA-60, Dali Oberon 1

Im happy going second hand for a decent amp - i have been looking at:

Graham Slee Gram Amp 2, ifi Zen Phono, Rega Fono MK3

All come recommended, and can be picked up for a good price - im open to suggestions, budget is around £150

Thanks

Dan
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Happy New Year 🥳

I’d recommend the Tisbury Audio Domino. Tiny bit more but well worth it to buy new as they’re very helpful.

 

acgingersnaps

Well-known Member
Graham Slee Gram Amp 2, ifi Zen Phono, Rega Fono MK3
I used to have the iFi. Great piece of kit. Low noise floor and will just amplify the signal from your cart, as it should do.
Gain settings as well, which is very rare at it's price level.

Not saying that you could do better with a higher spend, but for £150 I think you'd struggle to better it.

As a secondary point, phono stages are a pretty safe 2nd hand purchase. No moving parts and generally small and easy to ship. When I sold my iFi I got £100 for it. Worth a look on ebay for a bargain?
 

BT Bob

Distinguished Member
Maybe a little higher than your budget, but worth checking out the Schiit Mani (if you can find them in stock and you're sticking to MM cartridges).
Another alternative would be the Cambridge Audio Alva Duo - I'm currently running this with my Rega Pg/Ania, having tied the Mani in MC mode and the Rega Fono MC.
 

musicphil

Active Member
iFi Zen is ridiculously under priced.
I listened to those you mentioned and others costing alot more (up to £1000) and the Zen won hands down.
Sooooo quiet and covers you for MC cartridge upgrades later.
I heard Micheal Fremer put it in a $100,000 system and said it was not embarrassed by the other components with that system. That says alot.
 

Danarchy

Member
Thanks to everyone for their input. I went with the tisbury Audio, I like to support local business where possible!

Sounds great so far.
 

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TheHighFlyingBirds

Distinguished Member
Looks good with your turntable. Hows the sound compared to your old pro-ject?
 

Danarchy

Member
Mids are a lot cleaner. The DALI speakers are very clean so they both work quite well. I have to be careful or they can be too bright if you know what I mean
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Thanks to everyone for their input. I went with the tisbury Audio, I like to support local business where possible!

Sounds great so far.

Excellent choice 😉. Doesn’t need a warm up like some Project either.
 

westly197

Novice Member
I see you made your choice, glad you are happy with it and hope it works well for you. I also like supporting local business, so great choice though I’ve never heard one to offer any opinion on it.

For others running across this thread I’d recommend the iFi Zen Phono, especially if you have a balanced input on your preamp or receiver. It really sounds amazing, better than the Mani and a lot better than everything else I listened to. I noticed an additional improvement using the balanced connection over the single ended RCA - well worth picking up a cable if your setup supports it. It’s amazingly quiet, and is very clear and accurate across the full range. It does seem to be going up in price as of late, but still a great choice.
 

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