I must admit that, for a long time, I found it difficult to accept the idea that a major portion of one's audio budget should be spent on the preamplifier. Speakers, yesthey produce the sound; amps drive the speakers, so they're
important. And source components? Well, everyone knows it's garbage in/garbage out. But a preamp
? Even the name suggests something that's not quite the real thing, like pre
-med, or pre
mature. Unlike amplifiers, they don't have to contend with loads that sometimes approach a short circuit, and heat dissipation is not normally a problem. What's the big deal?