Originally Posted by bill gordon
How does this unit rate as a 2-channel pre- I know they pride themselves on audio- BUt let's compare it to say the AR REF3 or MBL 6010d-which are top of the line Pre's- what difference in overall sound should I expect from a seperate Pre?- I am debating to use the 861 as a pre/ proc. or go with a sep. preamp- thanks,bill
Not in the same league as the AR REF3 which I am very familiar with. I compared it to a VTL 7.5 in the same system. VTL smoked it'. Never heard the MBL stuff. Surrround processors have improved BUT, for two channel with a stand along player, everyone that I have used gets smoked. Theta makes a robot controled analog pre-amp that I use called a Six Shooter. Works great. However, I would not recommend Theta to anyone right now. New company has made no committment to current owners and you'd be taking a HUGE risk. I already own the stuff so can't lose anymore than I have already. The Six Shooter and Theta CB3 combo does give you the best of both worlds. Still, the VTL 7.5 beat the Six Shooter too , IMO when I tried them all in a friends system. Just for two channel analog and not doing multi-channel? No brainer, Audio Research Ref3.