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Analog Line Level Preamplifiers , Passive Pre-amps, Crossovers, etc.

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Old 19th August 2012, 08:18 PM   #1
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Default pre amp suggestions, DIY or Non DIY, Im easy

Im looking to get a pre amp, and convert the 2 Cambridge audio A1 amplifier I have.
Currently I use one only, and use passive crossovers. Im neither wanting to avoid DIY or exclusively seek opinions on *something* that would be suitable. I have a modest budget.
I aim to either-
make a line level passive filter (LLPF )
Or, go active to some degree. Id prefer analogue, im yet to be swayed by DSP im afraid, and

Also the A1 amp is based on a chip amp, either a TDA or LM, cant remember which, 25 watts RMS. Im planning to remove the pre amp circuit, re house the rest, and beef up the PSU a little.

Perhaps naively i regard the pre amp to be the greater importance in an inegrated amplifier, so id like a good pre amp, but also not overkill.

Has anyone any recommendations that would suit me?

Thanks for reading
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Last edited by mondogenerator; 19th August 2012 at 08:30 PM.
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Old 19th August 2012, 09:36 PM   #2
djn is offline djn  United States
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Hi bought a Pete Millete Low Mu preamp from a guy that was tired of chasing the hum. I chased the hum for 6 months, but kept on it because it was the best sounding pre amp I'd ever heard. Well, it turned out that the 6.3v heater windings on the all in one power transformer was causing the hum. I installed a separate 6.3v power transformer and it is quiet now.....AND...the best sounding pre amp I've ever heard.
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Old 20th August 2012, 12:24 AM   #3
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Hi,

Almost certainly the sound of an integrated amplifier is far more
related to the power amplifier than the pre-amp, and in most
cheap amplifiers, except for phono, the pre-amp is fully passive.

Arguments rage about passive pre-amps, but IMO you simply
can't argue about performance per buck at the low end.
(The power amplifier can be subtlety enhanced for passive).

rgds, sreten.
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Old 20th August 2012, 01:26 AM   #4
Bare is offline Bare  Canada
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OK fairly basic to separate out the 6.3 v heater winds from the transformer. A simple wall wart can the job do nicely...it's Just to turn heater filaments red hot :-)
But.. what happens to the main voltages once the heater loads are removed from the overall transformer loadings ???
New and improved' voltage levels to create other wierd effects?

Last edited by Bare; 20th August 2012 at 01:28 AM.
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Old 20th August 2012, 01:36 AM   #5
Bare is offline Bare  Canada
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It's my opinion and observation that an "integrated' Amp is usually an Amp tuned for highish gain and with tone circuitry added in.. usually a 'few' Opamps and Controls pots.
One can usually remove that "pre amp' section' by either flipping an internal switch or in lesser units detaching a wire or 2.
More than a few have found happiness with a simple Stepped attenuator betwixt source and Amp.
Sadly there are oddities in amps and source components that preclude this from being a universal success. Try and see if your Gizmos can co habitate?
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Old 20th August 2012, 05:11 AM   #6
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thanks for the responses. I didnt realise that the pre amp could be passive. Since the A1 has bass and treble controls, i assumed it to not be passive. A stepped attenuator would be *easy* reletively speaking. Whilst this is a project that isnt at the top of my 'to do' list, it should be simple enough to try. The Cambridge amp looks very simple to modify.
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