Radford sta15 looking for a nice preamp... - diyAudio
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Old 25th February 2010, 10:58 AM   #1
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Default Radford sta15 looking for a nice preamp...

I'm new here.
I'm impressed about how live sounds my system composed by a Radford STA15 mkIII coupled with a Radford sc22 dirving two gorgeous Tannoy SRM15X.
So what's the problem you probably wonder...
I hear three "problems". The most important is a lost of soundstage's detail when a big orchestra is playing. It's like the image is collapsing instead of growing up.
The second consists in an excess of harshness on very high treble.
The third problem is a lack of bass definition, but this last problem is not as important as the firs two.

So I'm really looking and I'm also open to any suggestion on how improve my system.

thanks in advance for help,
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Old 25th February 2010, 12:57 PM   #2
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: London
Hi - your system has three components you mention - preamp, amp and speakers. To that you need to add your own ears, the listening material and the size and nature of the room. they all count, and we don't know what they are yet!

But back to the three components. I'd call Tannoys a little hard in the treble - I'm sure Tannoy lovers will jump on me here, but compare Tannoys to ribbons in the treble and you're in another level of smoothness and detail.

The amp is probably the most blameless in the treble, but probably the main culprit in the bass, maybe simply lack of power depending on your room size and listening level and music.

But to assess the preamp, why not just substitute a passive preamp and see what that sounds like for starters?

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Old 25th February 2010, 01:52 PM   #3
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Thanks Andy for your help.

I tried the sta15 coupled with a roksan caspian preamp and also with a Unison Research c5p tube preamp. In both case I had more bass control and less treble harshness, with more soundstage and details on big orchestra. (same room, same music, same ears and same brain).
But the 3D and the live effect of the SC22 was far far away.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 01:30 PM   #4
NoFi47 is offline NoFi47  Germany
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Münster
The most importand thing is what tube is in the Radford. You can experiment on tube rolling, there is a great effect on all your problems you mentioned. Radford goes for really live experience imo so stay on the SC 22 !
Good Luck
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