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Thread: Fancy a cheap passive pre-amp?

  1. #21
    Join Date: Sep 2009

    Location: Derbyshire

    Posts: 7,138
    I'm Josie.

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    Thanks for the quote, Andrew.

    No... It's not. Lol. Mine is made by boffins with a budget bigger than when Mr. Sausage McDoogle said to his wife, "if you can find a bigger sausage than mine you can clear off and start your own sausage factory"



    Sent from my 9001X using Tapatalk
    Preamplifier: Croft Epoch Elite - Dual external PSU & Upgrades
    Amplifier: Tube Distinctions Copper Amp No. 5 using KT150's
    Digital: Raspberry Pi & ALLO Piano DAC & KALI - IQAudio DAC with SBooster Linear BOBW PSU & Trio DP700 CDP
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    Speakers: 15" Tannoy Monitor Golds in Lockwood Majors with Tannoyista Spec 3 crossovers
    Cables/Mains: Mark Grant Black Series mains cables & 6-Way power bar
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    Mains Other: Tube Distinctions/Mark Grant 'The Power Works' Digital noise mains power filter TD2414-MG - Nick Gorham DC Blocker unit constructed by Mark Grant

  2. #22
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 2,706
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Black Adder View Post
    Thanks for the quote, Andrew.

    No... It's not. Lol. Mine is made by boffins with a budget bigger than when Mr. Sausage McDoogle said to his wife, "if you can find a bigger sausage than mine you can clear off and start your own sausage factory"



    Sent from my 9001X using Tapatalk
    That Rotel is a thing of beauty. If I had the sovereigns it would be in my house. Possibly the most elegant passive pre ive ever seen. #stunner.

    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    Alphason HR100 MCS > Toshiba SR 370 Turntable > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Firebottle OTP MK2 Phono Stage > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  3. #23
    Join Date: Sep 2009

    Location: Derbyshire

    Posts: 7,138
    I'm Josie.

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    It certainly is. It's bonkers regarding build quality and sound.

    Sent from my 9001X using Tapatalk
    Preamplifier: Croft Epoch Elite - Dual external PSU & Upgrades
    Amplifier: Tube Distinctions Copper Amp No. 5 using KT150's
    Digital: Raspberry Pi & ALLO Piano DAC & KALI - IQAudio DAC with SBooster Linear BOBW PSU & Trio DP700 CDP
    Turntable: Thorens TD124 MkII - Schopper refurbished
    Tonearm: SME 3009 S2 None Improved - Audio Origami modified
    Cartridge: Ortofon SPU GT
    Speakers: 15" Tannoy Monitor Golds in Lockwood Majors with Tannoyista Spec 3 crossovers
    Cables/Mains: Mark Grant Black Series mains cables & 6-Way power bar
    Cables/IC's: Mark Grant HDX1 Pure Copper + Custom made Silver/Gold interconnects
    Mains Other: Tube Distinctions/Mark Grant 'The Power Works' Digital noise mains power filter TD2414-MG - Nick Gorham DC Blocker unit constructed by Mark Grant

  4. #24
    Join Date: Oct 2016

    Location: Bolton, England

    Posts: 612
    I'm Andrew.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkless Electronics View Post
    I presume the XLR's are not balanced?
    I wondered about that but the pot looks long enough to be a four-ganged jobby, so maybe it is balanced.

  5. #25
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: NE England

    Posts: 4,371
    I'm Jez.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RothwellAudio View Post
    I wondered about that but the pot looks long enough to be a four-ganged jobby, so maybe it is balanced.
    Now had a look at ebay listing and apparently it is balanced for XLR's!
    Arkless Electronics-Engineered to be better. Tel. 01670 530674 (after 1pm)

    Modded Thorens TD150, Audio Technica AT-1005 MkII, Technics EPC-300MC, Arkless Hybrid MC phono stage, Arkless passive pre, Arkless 50WPC Class A SS power amp, (or) Arkless modded Leak Stereo 20, Modded Kef Reference 105/3's
    ReVox PR99, Studer B62, Ferrograph Series 7, Tandberg TCD440, Hitachi FT-5500MkI, also FT-5500MkII
    Digital: Yamaha CDR-HD1500 (Digital Swiss army knife-CD recorder, player, hard drive, DAC and ADC in one), PC files via 24/96 sound card and SPDIF, modded Philips CD850, modded Philips CD104, modded DPA Little Bit DAC. Sennheiser HD580 cans with Arkless Headphone amp.
    Cables- free interconnects that come with CD players, mains leads from B&Q, dead kettles etc, extension leads from Tesco

  6. #26
    Join Date: Apr 2017

    Location: Cheshire UK

    Posts: 112
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by walpurgis View Post
    That was the point. And it sounds good!
    Yes no worries and my posts are never really to have a go or one upmanship. Its always good to see products as a cost reference point. I am interested and am on a starter journey with a passive pre. A switch and a pot...a stepped attenuator and who knows where it ends with contactless utopia. At my level Im just happy with a good sound and simple signal path with good components

    I may be missing out on a bargain but am prepared to pay some more. The XLRs are interesting and have made me think.

    Dont worry I get you and I see the cost saving. Maybe I have some irrational bias against cheap Chinese products in the hi fi industry. I have a Chinese brand phone which works well and I know the Chinese can produce some excellent products.

    Little Bear as a name though?.... Come on!
    Last edited by Minstrel SE; 31-05-2017 at 17:40.

  7. #27
    Join Date: Apr 2012

    Location: Southall, West London

    Posts: 26,796
    I'm Geoff.

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    I've had a good few passives including stepped attenuator types and apart from my TVC unit this seems as good sounding as any.
    Mr. Tact!

    Main system: MMs/ADCs/Low output MC's/One rare Japanese SUT/One scarce British phono stage/various tonearms/hefty Japanese DD TT and hefty Japanese BD TT and small British BD TT. 4 CD players/2 jitter buster/2 DACs/Valve buffer. TVC stepped attenuator or valve pre-amp or solid state pre-amp. Current dumping power-amp or either of two Class A SS power-amp or Class A EL34 valve monos or big Japanese (part Class A) integrated. Big dual concentric speakers/Smaller dual concentric speakers/Two way British compacts and full range speakers, amongst others. And too much more to list!

  8. #28
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Forest of Dean, Glos & Cambrian mountains, Wales

    Posts: 8,622
    I'm Jerry.

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    Little Bear make/market some good, cheap, high value gear - I have a little phonostage of their's - something like 35 new - and it's really pretty darn good!

    Not sure what is odd about the name Little Bear - but then I'm sweet and innocent like that.
    Jerry

    Main systems:
    Spotify Premium streaming, Cambridge Audio 851D DAC, Pure Sound L10 pre, Pass X150 power amp. Speakers: MBL 116F. Cryo Silver i/c & Western Electric 16GA spkr cables. ProJect and Nordost Magus power cables

    Headphones: Fostex T50RP mk3, AKG 551, B&O H6, PSB M4U-1, B&O Form 2 & 2a and Sony XBA-H1 & SoundMagic E50 IEM headphones

    2nd system: Spotify Premium streaming / Pioneer DV-535, Audiolab MDAC, Black Cat power amp, Chario Syntar 100T speakers. Headphones: Fostex T50RP mk3, SoundMagic E10 IEM headphones

    3rd system: Portable CD player, Kinter MA-180 T amp, Klegg Symphony 102 speakers

  9. #29
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 34,449
    I'm Grant.

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    Ursa Minor to us
    Regards,
    Grant ....
    Sometimes incompetence is useful. It helps you keep an open mind.
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  10. #30
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: NE England

    Posts: 4,371
    I'm Jez.

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    Quote Originally Posted by walpurgis View Post
    I've had a good few passives including stepped attenuator types and apart from my TVC unit this seems as good sounding as any.
    Other than reliability and channel matching issues indeed I would expect this to sound very similar to a 1K passive. A passive pre is a passive pre and there's nowt to get wrong.... I would expect all passive pre's to sound very similar regardless of price. Not identical mind... more money generally does get you some greater transparency, mainly by going from a standard vol control to a stepped attenuator, but it will be slight.
    Arkless Electronics-Engineered to be better. Tel. 01670 530674 (after 1pm)

    Modded Thorens TD150, Audio Technica AT-1005 MkII, Technics EPC-300MC, Arkless Hybrid MC phono stage, Arkless passive pre, Arkless 50WPC Class A SS power amp, (or) Arkless modded Leak Stereo 20, Modded Kef Reference 105/3's
    ReVox PR99, Studer B62, Ferrograph Series 7, Tandberg TCD440, Hitachi FT-5500MkI, also FT-5500MkII
    Digital: Yamaha CDR-HD1500 (Digital Swiss army knife-CD recorder, player, hard drive, DAC and ADC in one), PC files via 24/96 sound card and SPDIF, modded Philips CD850, modded Philips CD104, modded DPA Little Bit DAC. Sennheiser HD580 cans with Arkless Headphone amp.
    Cables- free interconnects that come with CD players, mains leads from B&Q, dead kettles etc, extension leads from Tesco

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