Best sounding digitial preamp/receiver for stereo listening - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 29 Old 08-04-2014, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Best sounding digitial preamp/receiver for stereo listening

Hi, I'm planning to run a pair of Martin Logan motion 40s with an Emotiva XPA-200 amplifier. I am in the lookout for an excellent sounding digital preamp/dac or AV receiver with pre-outs. My budget is <$600ish. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks.
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post #2 of 29 Old 08-04-2014, 08:43 PM
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Why not pair it with the Emotiva XDA-2? Or, if you need more flexibility you could go with this, http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/975.html.

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post #3 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 07:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post
Hi, I'm planning to run a pair of Martin Logan motion 40s with an Emotiva XPA-200 amplifier. I am in the lookout for an excellent sounding digital preamp/dac or AV receiver with pre-outs. My budget is <$600ish. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks.
Excellent-sounding preamps start at around $3000.

The Pro-Ject PRE Box S is $299, however, and might be what you want. It is a lot for the price.

It only has two inputs, but there are switch boxes that will expand that to 5 inputs.

The Cables to Go 28750 switcher is under $20.

If you have $600 to spend, however, I would spend it on a NAD T748 receiver. It has preout jacks for all channels and excellent sound quality compared to many other receivers.
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post #4 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
Excellent-sounding preamps start at around $3000.
Can you please back it up with evidence?
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post #5 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by spkr View Post
Can you please back it up with evidence?

It is my opinion; based on 40 years of listening to such equipment.

Many articles I have read by highly experienced audio professionals seem to back me up.

If you disagree, that is your privilege.
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post #6 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
It is my opinion; based on 40 years of listening to such equipment.

Many articles I have read by highly experienced audio professionals seem to back me up.

If you disagree, that is your privilege.
I asked for evidence, not opinion. If you can't distinguish the two, you've got a problem.
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post #7 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spkr View Post
I asked for evidence, not opinion. If you can't distinguish the two, you've got a problem.
Apparently, it's just cost, and no consideration need to be given to the design, or components used, it's just the sticker price.

Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
It is my opinion; based on 40 years of listening to such equipment.

Many articles I have read by highly experienced audio professionals seem to back me up.

If you disagree, that is your privilege.
In 40 years of listening, when did the price jump up to the magic $3000 mark? Surely it wasn't 40 years ago as that would have been an absurd amount of money than, easily the price of a new car was then.
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post #8 of 29 Old 08-05-2014, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by 89grand View Post
In 40 years of listening, when did the price jump up to the magic $3000 mark? Surely it wasn't 40 years ago as that would have been an absurd amount of money than, easily the price of a new car was then.
Once in a while I see some poster blaring out bunch of stuff online just for some attention. Looks like he is one of those.
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post #9 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 05:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spkr View Post
I asked for evidence, not opinion. If you can't distinguish the two, you've got a problem.
One problem is that 40 years of experience listening to hi fi gear is that 40 years experience naturally pushes ones age to the 60s.

From the viewpoint of being 67, my experience is that my ears are not what they were a decade or two ago, and I've got the failed DBTs (that I used to ace) to show for it.

My more general experience is that a lot of people lose interest in audio once they reach the 60s, and it is the rare person who is doing significant upgrades after their mid-60s. I still love listening to music and spend hours some days doing it, but the SPLs for maximum enjoyment are going up.

Another problem is of course that we are not seeing any reliable evidence other than vociferous baseless assertions.

The idea that you have to pay the big bucks for quality sound flies in the face of the fact that the price performance of mainstream audio electronics continues to improve pretty rapidly. For example, a $40 Sansa Clip is the technical test equivalent of a circa 1980s audio system costing orders of magnitude more other than power amps, and the prices for quality power amps has been dropping like a rock, as well. And the $40 Clip isn't just a music player, it also contains the music library.
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post #10 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 05:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spkr View Post
I asked for evidence, not opinion. If you can't distinguish the two, you've got a problem.
What you ask for and what I choose to give are two different things. You seem to have a problem understanding that. I don't work for you.

I stated an opinion, and I stand by it because it IS my opinion. End of story as far as I am concerned. Take it or leave it.

If you want EVIDENCE, do some research or hire a private investigator.
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Last edited by commsysman; 08-06-2014 at 05:40 AM.
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post #11 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 05:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 89grand View Post
Apparently, it's just cost, and no consideration need to be given to the design, or components used, it's just the sticker price.

In 40 years of listening, when did the price jump up to the magic $3000 mark? Surely it wasn't 40 years ago as that would have been an absurd amount of money than, easily the price of a new car was then.

It should be obvious to anyone but someone who is being intentionally obtuse that current prices are under discussion, and I base that number on the products I see on the market and my opinion of their quality and prices.

Many will certainly disagree; my opinion is just one opinion and nothing more.

Those who feel they have to trash my opinion to validate theirs are revealing a lot more about themselves than anything else.
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post #12 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 09:43 AM
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The best sounding DAC I've heard is handsdown the Oppo 105: https://www.oppodigital.com/blu-ray-bdp-105/

I have it paired with an Emotiva XSP-1 preamp and the resulting sonic bliss is better than sex with Jessica Alba.

IMO it's better sounding than my previous Emotiva UMC-1, and my Rotel RSP-1068,
and is on par with the sonics of the Classe 800.

You don't need to buy the XSP-1, I just wanted a physical volume knob I could touch (cause I'm anal like that.)
https://emotiva.com/products/pres-and-pros/xsp-1

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post #13 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 11:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post
From the viewpoint of being 67, my experience is that my ears are not what they were a decade or two ago, and I've got the failed DBTs (that I used to ace) to show for it.

My more general experience is that a lot of people lose interest in audio once they reach the 60s, and it is the rare person who is doing significant upgrades after their mid-60s. I still love listening to music and spend hours some days doing it, but the SPLs for maximum enjoyment are going up.
And why is that? Other interests? Sitting in front of the TV all day? Or no interest left in anything? I have seen lots of 60+ folks here on the AVS Forums btw

I actually knew a guy near the age of 80. Just before he died he bought himself some new stereo equipment. Had probably to do with the kick he got out of buying it, feeling alive for the last time in anticipation of death.
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post #14 of 29 Old 08-06-2014, 01:52 PM
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Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
What you ask for and what I choose to give are two different things. You seem to have a problem understanding that. I don't work for you.

I stated an opinion, and I stand by it because it IS my opinion. End of story as far as I am concerned. Take it or leave it.

If you want EVIDENCE, do some research or hire a private investigator.
I know what you posted. The question is, do you know what you are posting? So far, you've been posting bunch of baseless claims. You are not helping the readers by posting bunch of outrageous claims about preamp's sound quality in relation to its price. You need to cut those BS out.
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post #15 of 29 Old 08-07-2014, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Guys do your bashing somewhere else. On the other hand, can anyone else recommend a good preamp or dac?
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post #16 of 29 Old 08-07-2014, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post
Guys do your bashing somewhere else. On the other hand, can anyone else recommend a good preamp or dac?
It's not bashing when a poster's BS gets exposed. Consider it eye opening process.

As for good preamp or DAC, try this link http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/index.html Or, any receiver under $600 will sound excellent for preamp use these days. Just pick one that has features you are looking for.

Last edited by spkr; 08-07-2014 at 08:40 AM.
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post #17 of 29 Old 08-07-2014, 03:08 PM
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Gentlemen,

Move on, please, and address the OP's question. Continued bickering will result in loss of posting privileges in this thread.

Thank you.

Please use the report post button to alert staff to problematic posts. Never quote or respond to them yourself
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post #18 of 29 Old 08-07-2014, 08:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post
Guys do your bashing somewhere else. On the other hand, can anyone else recommend a good preamp or dac?
Did you check out the Outlaw Audio processor yet?

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post #19 of 29 Old 08-07-2014, 10:01 PM
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If you can live without hdmi. You can buy used high end processers for pennies on the dollar. Krell, sunfire, proceed can all be found for less than 600. Any would make a fine 2 channel rig. I know the sunfire has a 7 channel input which allows you run lastest blu ray audio.
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post #20 of 29 Old 08-08-2014, 03:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BassThatHz View Post
The best sounding DAC I've heard is handsdown the Oppo 105: https://www.oppodigital.com/blu-ray-bdp-105/
Not only that, but depending on the configuration, one can build a system with a Oppo 105 and no other electronics but the power amps.
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post #21 of 29 Old 08-08-2014, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post
Not only that, but depending on the configuration, one can build a system with a Oppo 105 and no other electronics but the power amps.
Now that I've gotten the Audio-GD NFB-11 with that Sabre DAC chip, I've been curious whether the Oppo 105 would be any better, given that with the Oppo one is paying for 7.1 output, blu-ray capability, and the Oppo name. The OP only mentioned two speakers, so I wonder what equipment he really needs.

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post #22 of 29 Old 08-09-2014, 09:09 AM - Thread Starter
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I wanna use a preamp dedicated for 2.1 audio listening. An AVR would be nice but I can stay away from that without losing sound quality. I did check out Outlaw's stuff, not bad but their 975 processor looks quite good.
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post #23 of 29 Old 08-09-2014, 09:32 AM
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What are your source devices?

Is there some reason you need a multi channel surround processor for 2 channel listening? Seems overkill to me where you will be paying for a lot more than you might (and can) use. I have trouble imagining that the Outlaw 975 will out perform my NFB-11 or maybe even the Emotiva XDA-2.

The advantages of the surround pre-processor could (depends on the features) be
1) Room EQ and bass management.
2) The ability to hook up more devices.

Now for bass management, SVS Sound and Rythmik Audio, two of the top Internet direct subwoofer manufacturers, have 80 hz high pass filters built in their subs for integration with speakers for 2.1 usage; you can't do better than their subs for the money. For subwoofer EQ, the Mini-DSP would be a fantastic device that will do as well or better than the room EQ capability of a surround pre-processor.
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post #24 of 29 Old 08-09-2014, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post
I wanna use a preamp dedicated for 2.1 audio listening. An AVR would be nice but I can stay away from that without losing sound quality. I did check out Outlaw's stuff, not bad but their 975 processor looks quite good.
Check out the Peachtree Nova preamp and matching Peachtree 220 amp bundle. Special price at Music Direct w/a $700 discount. Might be what your looking for.
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post #25 of 29 Old 08-09-2014, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
Excellent-sounding preamps start at around $3000.

The Pro-Ject PRE Box S is $299, however, and might be what you want. It is a lot for the price.

It only has two inputs, but there are switch boxes that will expand that to 5 inputs.

The Cables to Go 28750 switcher is under $20.

If you have $600 to spend, however, I would spend it on a NAD T748 receiver. It has preout jacks for all channels and excellent sound quality compared to many other receivers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
What you ask for and what I choose to give are two different things. You seem to have a problem understanding that. I don't work for you.

I stated an opinion, and I stand by it because it IS my opinion. End of story as far as I am concerned. Take it or leave it.

If you want EVIDENCE, do some research or hire a private investigator.
Except you forgot to include in your first post that it was your opinion - you stated the $3000 mark as if it were fact.

When all else fails - RTFM!

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post #26 of 29 Old 08-10-2014, 12:40 PM
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uh Knuckles, the moderator, in post 17, said move on and address the OP's question, and to stop the bickering.
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post #27 of 29 Old 08-12-2014, 07:14 PM
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Parasound Halo P5 is the one I have and it has all you are asking for. Check with JD @ AVS for a good price close to your budget.

Best Regards,

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post #28 of 29 Old 08-14-2014, 03:31 PM
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[deleted. my suggestion wouldn't work in the OP's specific configuration]

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post #29 of 29 Old 08-17-2014, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8mile13 View Post
And why is that? Other interests? Sitting in front of the TV all day? Or no interest left in anything? I have seen lots of 60+ folks here on the AVS Forums btw

I actually knew a guy near the age of 80. Just before he died he bought himself some new stereo equipment. Had probably to do with the kick he got out of buying it, feeling alive for the last time in anticipation of death.
I might as well put in my two cents here. Last year I bought a pair of Martinlogan Electromotion ESLs. Right now I'm contributing this bit of audioporn to the internet. Next week I will be 82.
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