You're right , Tom, much ado about nothing as far as comparisons to high end stuff.  Mine is going to be a new little system with which I hope to enjoy SACD's in discrete sound for the first time.  Any records I care about I'll import to my Cool Edit Pro for processing via my old PCI CardDeluxe  that you put me on to, so thanks once again.

--- On Wed, 2/15/12, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

From: Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Phono Preamps
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 7:09 PM

Yeah, whatevs. Horses for courses. I suspect all of these little relatively inexpensive phono preamps are the same designs, right out of the various opamp spec sheets. There's a little tweaking here and there but two preamps that adhere to the RIAA curve as closely as all of these claim should not sound radically different. I also suspect this "78" setting on the Esoteric is something close to the old Orthophonic curve. There is no one "78" curve, but you will do OK with many records from about the mid-30's onward with the Orthophonic curve. You get something like the TDL if you want a lot of options, plus understanding that late in the 78 era, there were some significant differences in the curves used by the various companies. Plus it's good to have the high-pass and low-pass filters.

If anyone has done anything close to apple-apples tests of these little preamps, I'd be interested in the results. This would be same source material, same photo and cartridge, transfer at a high resolution, use as direct a chain as possible (ie no extra EQ or DSP). I'll never say never with audio, but I'd be surprised if they sound very different. If any sound really different, we'd need to compare circuits and components.

-- Tom Fine

----- Original Message ----- From: "Roderic G Stephens" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 9:50 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Phono Preamps

Well, the TLD is a bit out of my pocketbook, especially when you consider it MONO! As far as the NAD, this is from a comparison which mentions it this way:
"I’m not going to blab on and on about how this phono stage is a revelation, and kills phono stages costing thousands. The sound is very good. There are better sounding units, and they are all significantly more expensive. To compare it to a relevant “rival,” by price-point, I tried listening to the little NAD phono stage. The NAD can’t touch the Rek-O-Kut. The NAD was borderline unlistenable at times, where the Rek-O-Kut provided pleasurable listening."'m sure we could go on and on about which units are the best, but I think I'll settle on the bigger brother of the Rek-O-Kut ($10 more) with switchable EQ for LP or 78 disks.This customer review from the Needle Doctor's site. John, a customer says,I'm using this with an old (but good) ortofon VMS 20e cartridge, and the results are wonderful.
I was using an Apex ATP1 ( paid~$30) before. This one is better in the following respects
1.The noise floor is very very low, there are no random ticks and pops whatsoever.
2. There is audibly less distortion.
3. The lower mids sound more natural (probably due to the better RIAA spec).
It's in an attractive case. It's also small enough to stash out of site behind your amp or something.
The price is right too. It comes with a good quality RCA cable and a female RCA to male 1/8" TRS jack (for standard sound card use)., I think I'll probably go with the switchable EQ version. Thank to you all for your usual excellent input.Rod Stephens--- On Wed, 2/15/12, Tom Fine
<[log in to unmask]> wrote:

From: Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Phono Preamps
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 5:05 PM

I use and very much like the TDL 4010 Restoration Preamp. I also used to have one of the little ART
units, just to play records into headphones while I did desk work. It sounded surprisingly good and
the headphone amp was surprisingly good. The USB interface was not good due to no jitter

Keep in mind that the TDL preamp is MONO in its output. So if you plan to deal with stereo records,
you need a stereo preamp. NAD now
makes a USB phono preamp that is not very costly:
I have read a good review of the preamp section (the older version without the USB), I forgot where.

I'm still an advocate of keeping the phono preamp as a separate analog device, doing whatever
sweetening or cleanup you can do with your best analog gear and then taking it into digital
high-resolution through a good ADC. That then gives you a high-quality digital file which you can do
further DSP on. And, of course, the best thing you can do from the get-go is obtain non-damaged
records and clean them properly before playing. It goes without saying that RIAA records should be
played through an RIAA preamp and that your stylus and cartridge should be in great working order.

-- Tom
----- Original Message ----- From: "Corey Bailey" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:49 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Phono Preamps

> Hi Rod,
> The ART website lists the USB phono plus as discontinued:
> Based on what you've submitted, I would suggest the Rek-O-Kut.
> If you have vintage records and need to bypass the RIAA curve and/or wish
> to transfer them, you might consider the TDL 4010. It's shown at the
> bottom of the page here:
> Cheers!
> Corey
> Corey Bailey Audio Engineering
>> Of course, if I were using this phono preamp for my re-mastering, I'd
> probably go for this
>> one:
>> --- On Wed, 2/15/12, Roderic G Stephens <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> From: Roderic G Stephens <[log in to unmask]>
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Phono Preamps
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 12:29 PM
>> This University of Georgia notice made me start to ask a question about
> my
>> future audio updates.
>> I'm about to purchase a new 7.1 Yamaha RX-V671 tuner/amplifier to
> replace
>> my old TEAC 5.1 which needs its caps replaced if it's to have a new
> career. Â However, the old trusty and true retiree does have a phono
> preamp which the Yamaha doesn't, so in checking the web, I found this one
>> that seems to do everything than bake bread (or
>> reels). would you
> recommend the tried and true plain wrapper in the same price
>> range?
>> --- On Wed, 2/15/12, Daniel Roth <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> From: Daniel Roth <[log in to unmask]>
>> Subject: [ARSCLIST] University of Georgia Brown Media Archives in new
> facility
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 11:01 AM
>> Greetings,
>> As a staff member of the Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody
> Awards
>> Collection, I would like to share the press release
below with the ARSC
> community regarding the grand opening of a new special collections
> building on the campus of the University of Georgia.
>> It is with great pride that we share the news about this
> state-of-the-art
>> facility and the impact it hopes to have on media collections throughout
> the southeast.
>> As audio technician for the department, I will be overseeing the
> operation
>> of 3 new audio production suites. Each will be outfitted with
>> industry-standard technology as well as several top end analog pieces.
> This includes an Ampex ATR102 1/4" tape reproducer from ATR Services, as
> well as the KAB EQS MK12 Disc Mastering Phono Preamp, expertly
>> hand-crafted by KAB Electro-Acoustics. A complete equipment list will be
> made available on our web site shortly.
>> Be on the lookout for
more postings from the Brown Media Archives at UGA
> in the coming months as we embark on a new era.
>> Thank you,
>> Dan Roth
>> ARSC Member
>> Audio Technician
>> Walter J Brown Media Archives and
>> Peabody Awards Collection
>> University of Georgia
>> Main Library
>> Athens, GA
>> Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection ready for Grand
> Opening!<>
>> The Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection has
> taken
>> up residence in its new offices at the Richard B. Russell Special
> Collections Library Building<>. Preparations
> are
underway for the official building dedication
>> ceremonies<>, scheduled for Friday,
> February 17, 2012 at 11:00a.m.
>> 2011 found the Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection in a
> state of transition as we undertook the massive project of barcoding all
>> of its physical assets for transfer to a new, state-of-the-art storage
> vault located below the Special Collections Buildingâ?Ts main floors. As a
>> result of these efforts, we are poised to provide unprecedented access
> to
>> materials not previously available to the campus and research community
> at-large.
>> As we continue moving and unpacking in early-2012, we would like to
> welcome visitors to our newly-designed web site, and invite
them to
> explore the expanded content offerings found there. As well, we have
> established a YouTube
>> channel<> on which can
> be
>> found footage from a wide variety of our collection inventory for your
> enjoyment.
>> We look forward to continued service of the University of Georgia, the
> people of the state of Georgia, and the community worldwide by
> maintaining
>> the highest standards of excellence in the curation of this valuable
> collection of media assets.
>> Ruta Abolins
>> Director, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and
>> Peabody Awards Collection
>> [log in to unmask]
>> ------