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cngaucho
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System Config 3 Questions

Possible System configuration

Source 1: Benchmark DAC HDR

Source 2: Linn Majik LP 12

Phonostage: Linn Uphorik

Amplifier: McIntosh 275

Speakers: Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor M

Question 1: do I need a preamplifier in the above configuration or can I plug the Linn Uphorik directly into the McIntosh 275

Question 2: can I plug in the benchmark and Linn Majik into the Linn Uphorik phono stage XLR cables and then run them directly into McIntosh 275 selecting the source when i need.

Question 3: I am looking for a musical non-fatigue sound. I listen to mostly Opera and Jazz, will this system deliver?

Thanks and appreciate experienced audiophile advice!

jackfish
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Answers to the best of my knowledge...

1. Yes, you will need a preamp. The McIntosh MC275 is a power amplifier which will require a preamplifier to take the line level signals of each selected source, and control the volume and distribute the signal to the power amp.

2. No, you will need a preamplifier. A phono stage only amplifies the weak signal from the turntable to line level and adds RIAA equalization.

3. With a decent preamp you are well on your way.

cngaucho
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For sake of manage budget, I want to ask from another angle

Hi kind sir,

Thanks for your quick response. I live in China so I am betting I can find a low cost integrated tube with phonostage on the local market. But I want to make sure to buy high quality speakers and source and purchase the "middle parts" in phases. To hold me over until I can afford  a great phonostage upgrade, preamp, and tube amp like in the above config, I was thinking about a Chinese made integrated tube with phonostage (similar to Rogue Cronus solution- Made in USA) Do you think a Rogue Cronus-like solution is going to play ball with source (Linn LP12 and Benchmark Dac) and speakers (Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor M) I understand from audiophile friends that the source and the speakers are the most important. But I wonder if these Chinese integrated tubes will give the love these pricier components deserve? If not what kind of option is best? 

Thanks in advance for your advice!

jackfish
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Sure enough...

I think it might be hard to find a tube integrated amp with a phono stage. The Yaqin MS-12B is a darn good phono stage and not too bad preamp that would accommodate your Linn LP12 and Benchmark DAC and whatever power amplifier you choose. You should be able to find one, and a complementary power amp, in China for peanuts and when you are ready to upgrade you won't be out much.

If I were in China, I'd consider the very good for the money hi end products produced there.

The Jungson JA88D integrated amplifier has a good phono stage and a very good 80 wpc Class A amplifier section. Its not tubes, but should control the Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor M famously. http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0809/jungson_ja88d.htm

cngaucho
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My first possible system...

Thanks that's helpful! After our discussion I am thinking of going with the following seperates route in my system. I think the beauty of this is that I can upgrade step by step. First do the digital route and buy the Cremonas, McIntosh 2102 x 1, and the Benchmark HDR (this already works as a preamp). Then as time and budget allow add the analog side: a Linn LP 12 (with Urika phonostage upgrade) a line-in preamp (no idea here and would appreciate any guidance), plus perhaps another Mc Intosh 2102 running parallel or mono. This kind of system seems ideal for upgradability and resale value. I've been searching these online forums and coming back to great resources like Stereophile for the last 6 months doing as much research before I invest my hard earned cash in a system. I have already invested in the Benchmark DAC HDR so that I can go to the dealer and spend time auditioning my music. Like to give my thanks to the collective online community for helping to build up my knowledge from the comfort of my own home! Before I make the plunge though I would appreciate any last minute comment suggestions on the following set-up. And would really welcome suggestions on the Linestage preamp and cabling, power, or other accessories I need to consider. Best regards!

Source 1: Benchmark DAC HDR

Source 2: Linn LP 12 (with built in Urika phonostage)

Preamp: Linestage preamp (any suggestions???)

Power amp: McIntosh 2102

Edit- Speakers: Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor Elipsa (room is smalll enough that I need to put these on a bookshelf or against the wall)

PS: On the Chinese amp/preamp question I think I'm gonna pass so I can make sure I get maximum sound quality and resale potential with the Macs

commsysman
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PREAMP

Given the high quality of your other components, I would recommend that you get a Audio Research LS-27, which is currently going for $6995 in the USA.

It is the finest preamp in the world IMO, except for the AR Reference 5. I use the LS-26, which is essentially identical.

If you don't want to spend that much, then the second choice would be the LS-17, for $3995, which is nearly as good.

My third choice would be the Vincent SA-31MK, which is only $1500. The Vincent is made in China, but i don't know if it is marketed there.

Shuguang Audio makes an excellent integrated amplifier, the S300MK, which you might want to consider. If I was in China I would look carefully at their products. If you purchase an integrated amplifier you would not need a separate preamp or amplifier. That might be an excellent solution. The 300 is very low-powered, but I would assume that they also make higher-powered ones.

Primaluna also makes both integrated amplifiers and separate preamplifiers and amplifiers which may be available in China. They are very good products. Primaluna would give you the sound quality you want.

 

 

 

cngaucho wrote:

Possible System configuration

Source 1: Benchmark DAC HDR

Source 2: Linn Majik LP 12

Phonostage: Linn Uphorik

Amplifier: McIntosh 275

Speakers: Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor M

Question 1: do I need a preamplifier in the above configuration or can I plug the Linn Uphorik directly into the McIntosh 275

Question 2: can I plug in the benchmark and Linn Majik into the Linn Uphorik phono stage XLR cables and then run them directly into McIntosh 275 selecting the source when i need.

Question 3: I am looking for a musical non-fatigue sound. I listen to mostly Opera and Jazz, will this system deliver?

Thanks and appreciate experienced audiophile advice!

jgossman
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Vincent

I've not heard the Vincent integrated but I'm very impressed with their power amps.  I'm trying to find the poster under what name the Vincent product is sold under in China.  Vincent's designers claim the Vincent uses different internal than the domestic version.  My guess is they are fibbers.  Whatever the case it's a good product.  Construction materials remind me of Creek and my old Golden Tube Audio amp, which is a good thing. 

Good luck.

jgossman
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Shenya -

Apparently makes Vincent.  I've not seen a side by side comparison.

cngaucho
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Dealer is not going to let me demo the Macs!

Well the dealer is not going to let me demo the Mac 2102 or the 275s. In fact he doesn't have many tubes in stock (and not a single turntable either!) At least it is a good place for auditioning a wide range of speakers, you name em they got em. As it seems to be common audiophile knowledge to listen before you buy I am not keen on dropping my hard earned Chinese Yuan on some new Macs (although I am tempted :-)) Instead it looks like I am going to buy a pair of monitors and then go bring along my speakers to a few different shops and get down and dirty with local tube amps. I'll keep everybody posted on the results. This should be fun!

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