Originally Posted by Shike74
I had a Linn Unidisk SC as a preamp but sold it some days ago since I want a HDMI-capable preamp instead, looking at the Integra DHC-80.2 and I'm a tad unsure about the analog inputs on it. Linn havent bothered much with mch-preamps lately and it doesnt seem as they will bother in the future either so I'm pretty much forced to look for something else as preamp.
I have a Linn Akurate DS streamer as source for music and the combo ADS>Unidisk SC sounded great, does anyone else have a Linn streamer and tried connecting it to a Integra 80.2?
The ADS only got RCA outputs and balanced XLR aswell, no coax since the DAC in the ADS is supposed to be used, its an awesome machine and I love the sound it produces but will the 80.2 completely bottleneck the sound via the analog inputs?
edit: If it turns out that it sounds awfully bad, can I somehow bypass the DHC 80.2 when I want to listen to music in 2ch and use some other preamp+proamp? Or maybe some integrated analog amp that sounds good enough?
edit 2: seems I'll have to find a Linn-preamp or integrated that has unity gain. So it seems its possible to solve at least.
I don't listen to the analog inputs any more on the 80.2, not because they are bad, but just because I prefer hi rez Mch in a big, big way. I think the feedback on the 80.2's analog indicates you should give it a try. It might be totally satisfying. If it's not, you could fall back to a separate analog line stage with HT passthrough, not only from Linn but also from a host of other makers. Kal Rubinson just had nice things to say about the John Curl-designed Parasound Halo JC2 BP in Stereophile recently, for example. But, there are also less expensive analog stereo preamps out there with bypass, as well.
On the digital side, you would be hard pressed to find a better sounding prepro, especially considering Audyssey XT/32. I am not saying it exceeds them, but it is comparable to the big, expensive boys. I love it, though I could spring for something more costly, if I thought it was worth it. And, if you are like me, you might find yourself totally swept away by hi rez Mch music through this fine prepro.
For the vey best, most refined sound from the 80.2,also consider an upgrade to Audyssey Pro.