Luxman EQ-500
Luxman EQ-500
Luxman EQ-500

Luxman EQ-500: Enjoy true analogue perfection with this classic phono stage

The Luxman EQ-500 phono stage-preamplifier is designed to reproduce all the richness of the nuances of music and the quivering breath of melodies. For this, Japanese designers chose vacuum tubes as amplification elements. The front panel contains all the controls necessary for fine-tuning and switching functions, so the owner can enjoy true analogue perfection.

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With the release of the EQ-500, Luxman has once again proven that it can freely approach the ideal of sound reproduction. For the Luxman EQ-500 circuit, the designers chose lamps made in Slovakia, which have proven themselves to be of high quality and reliability. The lamp sockets have dense gold-plated contacts, which also ensures reliable connections and low resistance. In addition, this ensures stability of the supply voltage for the amplifier circuit, the power supply of which uses kenotrons. Luxman EQ-500 is perfectly combined with branded vinyl players PD-171A and PD-171AL, as well as with models from other manufacturers.

The circuitry of the Luxman EQ-500 includes several stages using radio tubes from the Slovak manufacturer JJ: four double ECC83 triodes, two double ECC82 triodes and an EZ81 tube rectifier. The phono stage uses four step-up transformers (two per channel) equipped with super-permalloy cores for increased performance. This design solves problems associated with amplification of the signal transmitted by MC cartridges with low output voltage. There is also a large output transformer. The Luxman EQ-500 circuits use high-quality components, including German Mundorf audiophile series capacitors and Japanese Takamisawa capacitors.

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The Luxman EQ-500 phono preamplifier has a neat full-size body made of aluminum and made in a distinctive proprietary design. All controls and settings are located on the front panel. On the left there is a power button and two backlit VU indicators for the output signal level. On the right there is a set of mechanical switches that serve to turn off the indicators, select a balanced or unbalanced output, invert the signal phase, activate stereo or mono modes, etc. There are Low Cut filter switches (cut off infra-low frequencies, 20 Hz/3 dB) and High Cut (high frequencies cut off, 8 kHz/3 dB). There is an activator for the Articulator function, which serves to demagnetize cartridges and coordinate their operation with the preamplifier. On the right side there are rotary controls that are responsible for selecting gain (3 options), impedance, load capacitance (6 values), cartridge type (MM, MC Low, MC High) and input.

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At the rear of the Luxman EQ-500 there are three RCA inputs for connecting turntables and their corresponding ground terminals. The outputs are represented by a pair of linear RCA and one balanced. Luxman EQ-500 meets high audiophile standards, has advanced switching and functionality capabilities and provides the highest sound quality.

Characteristics of Luxman EQ-500

Supported cartridge types MM, MC
Tubes used 4 x ECC83 (12AX7), 2 x ECC82 (12AU7), 1 x EZ81
Circuit design SRPP, cathode follower in the output stage, no feedback, RIAA equalizer
Input sensitivity MM: 4 mV, MC High: 0.44 mV, MC Low: 0.18 mV (1 kHz, at 36 dB gain)
Input Impedance MM: 30 kΩ – 100 kΩ (adjustable), MC High: 40 Ω, MC Low : 2.5 ohms
Gains MM: 36 dB, MC high: 55 dB, MC low: 63 dB
Maximum input overload MM: 300 mV, MC high: 34 mV, MC low: 13 mV
RIAA curve accuracy maximum deviation: ± 0.3 dB (20 Hz – 20 kHz)
THD 0.07%
Signal-to-noise ratio MM: 76 dB, MC high: 75 dB, MC low: 74 dB
Channel separation 65 dB (10 kHz)
Inputs 3 unbalanced RCA
Outputs 2 unbalanced RCA, balanced XLR
Other switching 3 ground terminals
Power consumption 47 W
Dimensions (WxHxD) 440x92x397 mm
Weight 12.5 kg