Originally Posted by islandman2020
Is there much benefit to using a high quality tube preamp with a high quality DAC?
Bragging rights among people who are overly impressed by things that glow in the dark.
As far as technical performance goes, adding a tube to the signal path is either going to dirty it up a little or a lot.
Does it improve anything since the DAC is already high quality?
DACs by themselves can be among the most perfected of all kinds of audio gear. Why try to gild a lilly?
I have in my possession several high end solid state DACs that I am testing. I run these Computer USB > DAC > Sherwood w/Trinnov. The sound is pretty awesome, but now I am wanting more.
If you want better sound quality, you know the local litany, right? Speakers, subwoofers, and room acoustics are the answer.
I am looking at a Conrad Johnson Classic Tube Preamp that comes highly rated.
I've got one of those.
Going from the DAC > CJ > Sherwood am I loosing some quality of the CJ by leaving the Sherwood in the chain?
From a measurements viewpoint, probably yes. There is very little active componentry that improves a system because if its gratuitous inclusion.
The only reason for leaving the Shereood in line is because of the "Neural" setting in Trinnov.
The reason why we call them equalizers is because they have the potential for straightening out bent response curves.
This takes 2 channel audio and changes it to quadraphonic and is amazing to listen to. I have really got accustomed to this sound. I know purists would say take as much out of the chain as possible and go strickly 2 channel.
Purists run the other way screaming when you show them an equalizer, but since just about every system with transducers in it has uneven frequency response, and equalizers can often improve that, why no?
My time is limited on making up my mind and there is no way to test this scenario ahead of time to sees how it would sound.
Why not test it properly when its time comes?
If I am going to lose too much benefit of the CJ with the Sherwood, or if adding a tube preamp has limited benefit, then I may need to postpone my purchase until I research this through some more. Opinions?
I have my CJ sitting around doing nothing much of the time, because I don't use it to digitize LPs that often. I can't come up with one reason to put it into the main system with my Denon AVR. If someone could come up with a reason that makes sense, that would be another thing. I'm not holding my breath!Edited by arnyk - 12/7/13 at 7:16am