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ModWright Instruments PH 9.0 Phono Stage: A New Paradigm in Affordable Excellence

By | June 2nd, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

ModWright Instruments PH 9.0 Phono Stage

Honey, I Shrunk the Phono stage

I’ve had the privilege of knowing Dan Wright for the past twenty years. Over that time, I’ve seen ModWright burgeon from its humble beginnings as an upgrade or modification-only service provider, to becoming a respected manufacturer of a full line of products. Over the past two decades, ModWright has established an unwavering benchmark in providing both remarkable sounding gear and exceptional value. In fact, I was so impressed with ModWright’s flagship phono preamplifier, the PH 150 Reference introduced in 2015, that I purchased mine after reviewing for another publication.… Read the full article

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Stein Music Stateline Phono 2 Signature with Power Supply

By | May 9th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

Stein Music of Germany has been known in these pages as the source for unique and exciting accessories that advance room treatment, amplifier performance, power supply distribution, power cords, turntable performance and more. We knew they were big into loudspeakers and electronics, though few made it to these shores. Time all that changed! Now available is their sleek solid-state phono stage that contains the genius and design work of their namesake, Holger Stein, and his engineers. With a tube-like sonic smoothness and elegance, giant soundstage, and blackest of backgrounds, the Stein Music Stateline Phono 2 Signature is the best edition of just their least expensive lineup of electronics.… Read the full article

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Doshi Audio Phono Stage V3.0 – The Curious Incident of the Phono Stage and the Listener

By | April 9th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

‘Twas the week before Christmas when Nick Doshi and Anthony Chiarella dropped by bringing seasonal cheer in the form of the Doshi Phono Stage V3.0. While it was warming up, I took the opportunity to bring them up to speed on my current configuration: all CH Precision components, including the CH P1 phono stage.

Nick inquired, “Did I have an opportunity to try the CH dual mono phono stage?”

MN: “Not yet…maybe one day. That’s supposed to be killer, but to do that right means four boxes on the floor, including the outboard power supplies.… Read the full article

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Jensen Transformers' MC-2RR ISO-MAX Moving Coil Phono Cartridge Step-Up Transformer

By | April 6th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , |

All components in BOLD are loaned; all components in standard face are owned by me.

LOUDSPEAKERS

Marten Bird Loudspeakers, Marten Duke 2 Loudspeakers, and REL Stadium III subwoofer.

ELECTRONICS

E.A.R. 324 phono preamplifier, two E.A.R. 890 amplifiers (ran as monos), E.A.R. 534 stereo amplifier, E.A.R. 912 Professional preamplifier, E.A.R. 834L tube line stage, E.A.R. HP4 headphone amplifier, Grado Battery headphone amplifier, and KingRex headphone amplifier.

SOURCES

Analog: E.A.R. Disk Master Turntable with two Helius Omega Tonearms.

Cartridges: Koetsu Rosewood Signature, London Reference and Grado Statement1.… Read the full article

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My Ultimate Mono Experience: the Hana SL Cartridge and the ModWright PH 9.0 Phono Stage – Part 2

By | April 4th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , , , |

Hey, Positive People!

When we last spoke on March 9 in Issue 102 (HERE), I ended the article saying that being so inspired by the sound of the Modwright P9.0 preamp, it led me to purchase quite a few fun vinyl items for discussion in this Part II of Mono-mania! I have a complete mono-ready rig set up which includes the Technics SL1200 MKII turntable with Hana SL mono MC cartridge, coming through the ModWright PH 9.0 tube phono stage (with power supply), which is driven by the Rega Brio integrated amplifier (coming through input 5) and delivered through my Spendor D5 floor speakers.… Read the full article

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My Ultimate Mono Experience: the Hana SL Cartridge and the ModWright PH 9.0 Phono Stage – Part 1

By | March 9th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , |

Wayne Goins and Henri Musselwhite:  a portrait. Salina, KS, 2017. Photograph by David W. Robinson.

A coupla months ago, I had a new experience when Dan Wright loaned me his ModWright PH 150 tube preamp for several months. Published in PF Issue 100 (HERE), I wrote about using the “mono” button on the front panel to achieve the desired effect. I really liked what I heard from the PH 150, except that a few other components it was combined with were not quite exactly what I needed to achieve the ultimate mono experience.… Read the full article

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Hana SL Moving Coil Cartridge with the Musical Surroundings Phonomena II+ Phono Preamp with Linear Power Supply

By | March 5th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , |

I love the new world of digital file streaming; I love the convenience of accessing your entire music library at the touch of a few tablet buttons, and I love the fact that digital-to-analog conversion has reached a state of near perfection that early digital only hinted at. And with so many outstanding tools at our disposal, such as Roon, with its remarkable distillation of music player/file organizer and an unbelievable suite of bit-perfect digital signal processing at your disposal—what’s not to love?Read the full article

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Zesto Andros Allasso Step-Up Transformer – Quite Possibly The Last SUT You'll Ever Need!

By | March 1st, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

“From my cold, dead hands!” - Charlton Heston, describing the only way anyone would be able  to take away his guns. I’ll state right up front that after a month in my reference system that’s exactly how I feel about the Zesto Andros Allasso step up transformer. In fact I was completely smitten with this little sonic marvel in a matter of hours, we bonded that quickly.

Historically step up transformers have come with only one fixed gain and loading setting.… Read the full article

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Paradox Pulse Audio Phono 70 Signature Phono Stage

By | February 21st, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

I came upon Paradox Pulse quite by accident while pursuing eBay looking at some used amplifiers. What first caught my attention, and the reason for my contacting them, was the rebodied and retipped Denon 103 R cartridges they were offering. Officially known as a the Paradox Pulse Guard3 R SMR. That will be the subject of a subsequent article to follow.

After lengthy discussion with Terence Robinson, owner, founder and chief engineer, I discovered that the rebodied and tweaked cartridges were only the tip of the iceberg of what Terrance and his company were about.… Read the full article

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Experiences with Gryphon Audio

By | February 11th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , , |

Mythical Sound from the Winged Lion.

How many manufacturers offer fully designed turn-key systems? How many do it with the panache of Gryphon Audio of Denmark? The answer can fit on one hand if you were missing at least two fingers.

My first encounter with Danish designer Fleming Rasmussen’s Gryphon Audio came with the review of the Gryphon Encore stereo amplifier, and Prelude preamplifier in 2004. In what seems to be another lifetime, the Encore displaced my Jeff Rowland 302 stereo amp as I fell for the spell cast by the Gryphon center of the earth weight, and warm slightly dark tonal balance.… Read the full article

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