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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    dudeman said:
    dudeman said:
    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    OK Need preamp recommendations.  Running a Pro-Ject Carbon Debut. It has the red Ortofon 2m cart.

    Looking to get a nice preamp and upgrade to blue cartridge to see if I can hear a difference.

    I was looking at the Project S2 tube but maybe that isn;t the way to go?

    OK, lets hear it.
    What's your price point? And do you want a tube? What is the amp that it will be paired with? Do you need a phono stage? Do you need a DAC?
    Price I'd like to see it under $500.
    No tubes as mentioned w the S2.  If I do go that route then I'll be switching out the amp next.
    The amp is a amp/receiver Denon AVR2700. Not the newer X2700.
    It has a dedicated phono stage already.
    I would think it would need a DAC?  Not sure if the phono stage converts it?
    So you want a true preamp but then run it to the AVR input to use as an amp?

    Have you considered another integrated (non-avr)? Or do you want separates?
    This is getting complicated now...

    I read that you need a good preamp.  I'm guessing that's not the case?  I have it set up now where it plays and sounds good.  Iwas wanting to see if it could sound even better.

    If my records play through the speakers I guess I don't need a preamp.

    I have 2 vintage integrated amps already and both need work so it's the Denon for right now.
    Lot to unpack here.  First, a good preamp does make a difference.  I think it makes more of a difference than the solid state amplifier.  If this is your AVR https://www.ebay.com/itm/364192602233  then yes, I would think a better preamp would sound much better.  An AVR is designed for home theater fundamentally, and the manufacturers spend a lot of money for the Dolby, HDMI and other certifications you see all over the component.  All of those circuit boards create noise.  

    Some people do think a preamp makes a big difference and it can at a high price point for sure.  But an integrated amp (not an AVR) from a reputable company would sound much better than that AVR you have.  First and foremost, it will have a better phono stage I'm sure.  But you can also go with a preamp and connect it to your Denon AVR and have the AVR serve as the amplifier.  Let me know if that doesn't make sense.  

    Some good, affordable brands for integrated amps are Yamaha, Cambridge and Marantz.  I would expect those would sound much better than your AVR.  This all presumes you have good speakers which is definitely the most important piece of the puzzle.  So if you don't love your speakers, I'd replace those first.  

    If you want an preamp and connect it to your Denon, I'm a big fan of Emotiva products.  I think they are really well priced for what you get.  Here is their preamp right at $500  https://emotiva.com/collections/pre-amps/products/basx-pt1-stereo-preamplifier-dac-tuner
    There are probably not a ton of options for a preamp at your price point.  People who go with separates are usually high end spenders.  
    So basically I should have my Pioneer 8500ii tuned back up and I should be good?  No preamp needed? Well I don't think I should need one.  It sounded great with this.

    I'm currently pushing Martin Logan 16's.  When this setup was in a bigger room I was using the HPM100's w the 200W version.
    So I don't know those Pioneers well, but a quick research tells me it is an amplifier, not an integrated amplifier (or stereo receiver).  Is that true?  If it is, well then you need a pre-amp.  An amplifier does not decode audio signals.  It just amplifies the signal.  
    Yes its an integrated amp. It ran into a 8500ii receiver which sounded wonderful.
    https://www.hifiengine.com/manual_library/pioneer/sa-8500.shtml
    If you can get that up and running,  I'm guessing that's WAY better than anything you'll find for $500. I think those are very well regarded.  @dudeman is the vintage expert so trust his opinion on it.  

    I don't love the phono stage on my Pioneer sx-750 though.  I find it dry sounding.  So if you're dissatisfied with that,  I'm happy to send you a few I have on the sideline to see if you like them better.  I have a Cambridge and Emotiva. The Emo is better quality.  

    Bottom line though,  I think you have a nice piece of gear and 500 preamp is not going to be better. 
    SX 750 are terrible.  Thats why I bought the 8500ii.  It needs a good tuning so I got the other for free for the time being.  It's either get that gear back up to snuff or buy something new.  

    That Denon was free and I read they make decent gear which is why I'm using it for now.  So if a preamp wont do me any good I'll just hold off.

    Most likely I'll buy something new.
    It I were in your shoes, I'd get that Pioneer gear serviced and never look back. 

    IMO, you would have to spend a crazy amount of money for modern gear to improve on the sound quality of what you already have. 
    Repair guy replicated your response.  He says the modern equipment can't match what the 70's Hi Fi stuff did and how it was made.

    I said "cool, I want this to work for 30 more years, so do what u need to."

    He also says that demand for these types of units will only be getting more expensive so if you want to go retro, get it now.
    Agreed on all counts. 

    I hope you have a good experience with that servicer. That Pioneer gear is legendary and for good reason. 
    He did mention that tube was the next way to go.  Let me get this gear up and running then I'll fin a vintage tube amp and go that route.
    That's quite the rabbit hole to venture down. Lots of cool stuff to explore and learn about. Should be a lot of fun for you!

    I picked up another Marantz 2215b a few days ago. It needs some work but I'm excited to have a second one of those things. There is something about those lower powered Marantz' that just sounds so good to me.
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,940
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
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    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,940
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    Did he hit it with Deoxit or some other electrical cleaner just in case?
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    That could be so many different things. Probably best to hook everything up and see what happens. I'd be happy to help troubleshoot it if the problem returns. 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    Did he hit it with Deoxit or some other electrical cleaner just in case?
    dudeman said:
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    That could be so many different things. Probably best to hook everything up and see what happens. I'd be happy to help troubleshoot it if the problem returns. 
    I told him to clean it, yes.

    TY Dudeman, I will be in touch this weekend.  DM me and we can exchange #'s and facetime if needed.
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    mrussel1 said:
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    Did he hit it with Deoxit or some other electrical cleaner just in case?
    dudeman said:
    mrussel1 said:
    Got the gear back.  Tech said nothing was wrong with it... That has me worried.  

    I'll plug it all up this week and see.
    What did you think was wrong?
    Well 2 things were wrong.  I was losing a channel on the amp and the fm dial was getting scratchy like it was loose.

    Both the tech did not find wrong.

    That could be so many different things. Probably best to hook everything up and see what happens. I'd be happy to help troubleshoot it if the problem returns. 
    I told him to clean it, yes.

    TY Dudeman, I will be in touch this weekend.  DM me and we can exchange #'s and facetime if needed.
    Message sent. 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019

    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 41,176
    I don't know if I mentioned this before, but for those of you who have older Marantz tuners that need work, I would recommend Randy Shaw at I Build Marantz:
    I heard about Randy from a guy on the Steve Hoffman music forums and who had work done by Randy and was very pleased.  The work is not cheap, but it's darned good and very thorough.  Randy basically rebuilt my Marantz 2220 B.  He replaced both defective parts as well as others that, at the age of my tuner, are apt to go out sooner or later.   Everything works great and its basically like having a new tuner.  The work is not cheap, but I found it well worth having it done for the money.
    Here's the amp with my secondary set up in the garage:

    Here are some before and after shots Randy took while doing the work:







    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    Very cool! 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    May 30thMay 30th Posts: 1,680
    Looks wicked!!
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    1ThoughtKnown1ThoughtKnown Posts: 6,155
    edited January 28
    Upgraded the amp in my basement setup with a Sansui AU-8500 amp. I had an early/mid 90s Pioneer VSX-D2S that was decent, but I just didn’t feel I was getting the full capability of the Marantz TT-15S1 turntable and Vandersteen 2ce speakers. 

    All I can say is… wow. Have the Analogue Productions 45rpm Doors s/t RE playing. Just phenomenal. 

    Going to give the Pioneer to my stepson, he and his girlfriend are getting into the hobby. 


    Post edited by 1ThoughtKnown on
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    Upgraded the amp in my basement setup with a Sansui AU-8500 amp. I had an early/mid 90s Pioneer VSX-D2S that was decent, but I just didn’t feel I was getting the full capability of the Marantz TT-15S1 turntable and Vandersteen 2ce speakers. 

    All I can say is… wow. Have the Analogue Productions 45rpm Doors s/t RE playing. Just phenomenal. 

    Going to give the Pioneer to my stepson, he and his girlfriend are getting into the hobby. 


    Very cool! Congrats!

    A buddy of mine has an old Sansui integrated like yours and is sounds terrific. 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    1ThoughtKnown1ThoughtKnown Posts: 6,155
    dudeman said:
    Upgraded the amp in my basement setup with a Sansui AU-8500 amp. I had an early/mid 90s Pioneer VSX-D2S that was decent, but I just didn’t feel I was getting the full capability of the Marantz TT-15S1 turntable and Vandersteen 2ce speakers. 

    All I can say is… wow. Have the Analogue Productions 45rpm Doors s/t RE playing. Just phenomenal. 

    Going to give the Pioneer to my stepson, he and his girlfriend are getting into the hobby. 


    Very cool! Congrats!

    A buddy of mine has an old Sansui integrated like yours and is sounds terrific. 
    Thanks! Very happy with that find. I’m a big fan of the Sansui amps 
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    May 30thMay 30th Posts: 1,680
    Looking good man!!
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    BIGDaddyWilBIGDaddyWil Michigan Posts: 3,059
    Upgraded the amp in my basement setup with a Sansui AU-8500 amp. I had an early/mid 90s Pioneer VSX-D2S that was decent, but I just didn’t feel I was getting the full capability of the Marantz TT-15S1 turntable and Vandersteen 2ce speakers. 

    All I can say is… wow. Have the Analogue Productions 45rpm Doors s/t RE playing. Just phenomenal. 

    Going to give the Pioneer to my stepson, he and his girlfriend are getting into the hobby. 



    Looks fantastic! I bet that sounds great!
    Pine Knob Music Theatre - Jul 31, 1992 Crisler Arena - Mar 20, 1994
    Summerfest - Jul 09, 1995*Savage Hall - Sep 22, 1996The Palace of Auburn Hills-Aug 23, 1998 Breslin Center- Aug 18, 1998,The Palace of Auburn Hills-Oct 07, 2000 DTE Energy Theatre-Jun5,2003,DTE Energy Music Theatre - Jun 26, 2003Sports Arena - Oct 02, 2004 Van Andel Arena - May 19, 2006Palace of Auburn Hills-May 22, 2006 Quicken Loans Arena-May 09, 2010
    10-16-2014 Detroit
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,940
    I'm not sure I've ever listened to a Sansui integrated,  but a friend has the 9090DB. Holy cow what a piece of gear that is.  Massive,  powerful, beautiful.  Just A+ in every way.  Plus 3 zones of audio,  that's awesome.  

    Does that integrated have the side panel for the speakers? That is the one strange thing about Sansui on some gear. I think it's terrible idea. 
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    1ThoughtKnown1ThoughtKnown Posts: 6,155
    edited January 30
    mrussel1 said:
    I'm not sure I've ever listened to a Sansui integrated,  but a friend has the 9090DB. Holy cow what a piece of gear that is.  Massive,  powerful, beautiful.  Just A+ in every way.  Plus 3 zones of audio,  that's awesome.  

    Does that integrated have the side panel for the speakers? That is the one strange thing about Sansui on some gear. I think it's terrible idea. 
    I’ve seen that side panel, not this one. I wouldn’t go for that… really odd idea. It’s all in the back, with three separate speaker ports. They had a 9500 there as well, but the 8500 was enough for the size of the room. This amp is heavy, a real piece of gear! I have Glen Hansard’s 2012 debut on right now and it feels like his band is in the room with me. The AAA records I have are just jaw dropping, particularly the AP RE of LA Woman or Chet Baker Sings Tone Poet. 



    Looks fantastic! I bet that sounds great!


    Thanks BDW! It’s an entirely new listening experience. 

    May 30th said:
    Looking good man!!
    Thanks pal! The kid needed an amp, so it got my ass in gear. Money well spent.  
    Post edited by 1ThoughtKnown on
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    1ThoughtKnown1ThoughtKnown Posts: 6,155
    edited January 30
    dudeman said:

    Just saw this one in a retro gear shop this week! Love to the blue light… I’ve got something similar on a Sansui 5050 upstairs. That little beauty was going for $1500 CDN fully refurbished. Yours looks mint… 
    Sure is purdy. 
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,940
    dudeman said:

    Just saw this one in a retro gear shop this week! Love to the blue light… I’ve got something similar on a Sansui 5050 upstairs. That little beauty was going for $1500 CDN fully refurbished. Yours looks mint… 
    Sure is purdy. 
    I went with a little different style, going with a black face and black case.  Mine came with silver face and the metal case which was ugly so I replaced it and went black. Both of these units are hooked up to my TT and an amp switch so I can level the sound and switch back and forth.  

    The sound signature between a Marantz (at least this 1971 model) and a modern Mc are so similar.   The Mc is more detailed  and you can hear it on something very high end, like an AP release or Music Matters. But play something like a PJ record,  even the double Yield, and it's hard to tell the difference.  That's how good vintage is, and a real value if you get a clean piece of gear.  


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    1ThoughtKnown1ThoughtKnown Posts: 6,155
    ^^^ Fantastic.  Early 70s Marantz and Sansui amps are amazing. 50 years later and they can still barely be topped. That’s saying something
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    I scored a nice pair of Marantz Imperial 5-Gs today. They are very clean except I will re-cloth the grilles with something other than brown fabric. 

    Pics to come when they're ready!
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,940
    dudeman said:
    I scored a nice pair of Marantz Imperial 5-Gs today. They are very clean except I will re-cloth the grilles with something other than brown fabric. 

    Pics to come when they're ready!
    How old are they? Have they been re'sealed,  foamed, etc.?
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    mrussel1 said:
    dudeman said:
    I scored a nice pair of Marantz Imperial 5-Gs today. They are very clean except I will re-cloth the grilles with something other than brown fabric. 

    Pics to come when they're ready!
    How old are they? Have they been re'sealed,  foamed, etc.?
    Pretty old, I'd guess. They have the original phenolic ring tweeters which both work and sound good. 

    The woofers are blue paper cone with rubber surrounds, also in really good shape. 

    The cabinets cleaned up nicely, too.

    I am usually not a "vintage speaker guy" but I heard a friend's Marantz Imperial 6s and I was blown away by them. Just a wonderful speaker that does everything well. They were made at a time when they used state of the art equipment, top notch engineers and a sound lab with an anechoic chamber to make the best sounding speakers possible. 

    Unfortunately, JBL and the like were dominating the market and Marantz speakers didn't sell too well. It's too bad because the Imperial line (except for the Imperial 7) were very, very good speakers. 

    I'm excited to get these prettied up with new grille cloth. Listening to Swell Season on them now and it sounds like Glen Hansard is in the room with me. Unreal. 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    dudeman said:

    Just saw this one in a retro gear shop this week! Love to the blue light… I’ve got something similar on a Sansui 5050 upstairs. That little beauty was going for $1500 CDN fully refurbished. Yours looks mint… 
    Sure is purdy. 
    Yeah man! Thanks! This is the second one of these I have. It works and sounds terrific and it's a great match for the Marantz speakers I just picked up. 

    I'm a pretty happy dude!
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    BIGDaddyWilBIGDaddyWil Michigan Posts: 3,059
    ^^^^^^^ You mean, "I'm a pretty happy dudeman!!"  ;)=)
    Pine Knob Music Theatre - Jul 31, 1992 Crisler Arena - Mar 20, 1994
    Summerfest - Jul 09, 1995*Savage Hall - Sep 22, 1996The Palace of Auburn Hills-Aug 23, 1998 Breslin Center- Aug 18, 1998,The Palace of Auburn Hills-Oct 07, 2000 DTE Energy Theatre-Jun5,2003,DTE Energy Music Theatre - Jun 26, 2003Sports Arena - Oct 02, 2004 Van Andel Arena - May 19, 2006Palace of Auburn Hills-May 22, 2006 Quicken Loans Arena-May 09, 2010
    10-16-2014 Detroit
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    BIGDaddyWilBIGDaddyWil Michigan Posts: 3,059
    mrussel1 said:
    dudeman said:

    Just saw this one in a retro gear shop this week! Love to the blue light… I’ve got something similar on a Sansui 5050 upstairs. That little beauty was going for $1500 CDN fully refurbished. Yours looks mint… 
    Sure is purdy. 
    I went with a little different style, going with a black face and black case.  Mine came with silver face and the metal case which was ugly so I replaced it and went black. Both of these units are hooked up to my TT and an amp switch so I can level the sound and switch back and forth.  

    The sound signature between a Marantz (at least this 1971 model) and a modern Mc are so similar.   The Mc is more detailed  and you can hear it on something very high end, like an AP release or Music Matters. But play something like a PJ record,  even the double Yield, and it's hard to tell the difference.  That's how good vintage is, and a real value if you get a clean piece of gear.  



    That is so hot! 
    Pine Knob Music Theatre - Jul 31, 1992 Crisler Arena - Mar 20, 1994
    Summerfest - Jul 09, 1995*Savage Hall - Sep 22, 1996The Palace of Auburn Hills-Aug 23, 1998 Breslin Center- Aug 18, 1998,The Palace of Auburn Hills-Oct 07, 2000 DTE Energy Theatre-Jun5,2003,DTE Energy Music Theatre - Jun 26, 2003Sports Arena - Oct 02, 2004 Van Andel Arena - May 19, 2006Palace of Auburn Hills-May 22, 2006 Quicken Loans Arena-May 09, 2010
    10-16-2014 Detroit
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019
    ^^^^^^^ You mean, "I'm a pretty happy dudeman!!"  ;)=)
    Indeed! Haha
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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    dudemandudeman Posts: 3,019


    These are the Marantz Imperial 5-Gs. New grille cloth just finished tonight. 
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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