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Tube buffer for turntable?

1240 Views 15 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  judas_rising
I have Rega Planar 3 TT fitted with the Elys 2 cartridge. Phonostage, preamp and poweramp are all solid state, driving Focal Aria 948. As the Elys 2 is a touch bass shy than I would like, so wondering if a tube buffer between the phonostage and preamp would do anything for the bass assuming it is technically correct.

Any suggestions for a tube buffer under 200 USD or rather save up for a proper tube phonostage if that would make a difference and also one less link in the chain.

Thanks in advance - stay safe.
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I don't think a tube buffer will do much. I think a change in carts would be a better choice. At around your price range a Ortofon 2M Blue would be an improvement. But a bigger step would ba a Hana EH. a high output MC cart. High output MC carts are compatible w/MM phonos. Excellent cart plenty of detail good bottom end $475. :) 馃憤
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Why on earth would you add a useless noise generator into the signal path?
Tube RIAA stages can be excellent, if, and it's a big if, they are designed and implemented well. Those that are, are not usually cheap. If you're looking only to spend a couple of hundred $, don't waste your time.

Whatever RIAA you buy, put it as close to the TT as possible.
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There are lots of Chi-FI quality affordable tube buffers that are wonderfully made. That said It probably will not enhance your bass. That鈥檚 cart, arm adjustment, amp or speakers, probably not source.
How about a simple equalizer like a Schiit Loki?
Improve the cartridge, so the upstream components have better, more extended bass to play with. A tube-based solution won't fix that problem.
A bit above your budget but I saw this review a few days ago and it looks like a really interesting device for optimizing/tweaking vinyl output.
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A bit above your budget but I saw this review a few days ago and it looks like a really interesting device for optimizing/tweaking vinyl output.
Blasphemy!!!!

:p
Blasphemy!!!!
I apologize for summoning digital demons into a vinyl thread ;). Even just as an analysis device it looks interesting, being able to tell wear and azimuth seem super useful.
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Blasphemy!!!!
Yeah, I think if one wants to change the sound, it can be a lot more surefire doing it with DSP or other EQ than trying buffers, cables, and so on, hoping for one that gives the desired result. It what you want is EQ, the most direct path is buying something made for the job, and leave audio dogma behind.
Yeah, I think if one wants to change the sound, it can be a lot more surefire doing it with DSP or other EQ than trying buffers, cables, and so on, hoping for one that gives the desired result. It what you want is EQ, the most direct path is buying something made for the job, and leave audio dogma behind.
The best solution is to employ components that don't need EQ. I know that is a bizarre concept to the Audyssey is God generation, but us old school folks made it work.
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I guess from my point of view if the outcome is a desired sound signature you can get it by using dsp, analog eq or even simple tone controls to get the result you want or you can constantly try different combinations of gear hoping you get it right but never knowing until you hit it. I know which one I'd prefer, especially given how wildly different recordings can sound on vinyl. The fact that it's cheaper and easier could be a plus or a minus depending on your own feelings.
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I guess from my point of view if the outcome is a desired sound signature you can get it by using dsp, analog eq or even simple tone controls to get the result you want or you can constantly try different combinations of gear hoping you get it right but never knowing until you hit it.
Yes, it's a lot cheaper (and perhaps more intellectually honest) to use EQ than to search for components that in a specific room, for a specific user, and in a specific combination, meet the desired FR target without EQ. And it's nice to be able to change that when playing a different recording with more or less bass -- at least at my house, they vary considerably.

This isn't said in the abstract, but because the OP wanted more bass.

Another approach would be moving the speakers to see if the bass response would be more to one's liking.

P.S. It's hardly "old school" to do without EQ. As I remember, it was in the 1980s or so that manufacturers started to convince audiophiles that omission of useful features was a mark of quality. Old-school gear had tone controls, tape outputs, and balance controls.
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Old-school gear had tone controls, tape outputs, and balance controls.

Mike (Portland, Oregon)
Yes, but all in the Analog realm.
Yes, but all in the Analog realm.
FYI, the Schiit Loki originally recommended is an analog EQ.
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Thanks for all the replies. Dont want to fiddle with cart change (spacers etc). Guess will keep it all stock and get good quality pressings.
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