Best Preamplifiers 2024
Best Preamplifiers 2024
Best Preamplifiers 2024

Best Preamplifiers 2024: The swiss army knife for your stereo system

With a plethora of preamplifiers available right now, our editorial rating becomes even more intriguing as it addresses the question. “What is the best preamplifier currently available right now?”

8. Schiit Kara

8. Schiit Kara

The Schiit Kara presents a complete balanced design featuring the exclusive Nexus topology, a relay volume control with 128 steps, and an integrated headphone amplifier. This model is constructed to endure, with its engineering solutions potentially setting a benchmark for pricier devices (take note of the impressive signal-to-noise ratio of 129 dB!). When it comes to sound coherence and precision, there is simply no room for any grievances with this preamplifier.

Pros: Excellent design and decent sound

Cons: At this price – nothing

Verdict: A beautifully designed model

Specifications:

Frequency response – 20 – 20,000 Hz | Signal to noise ratio – 129 dB | THOI – 0.02% | Phono stage – no | Weight – 5 kg

7. Quad Artera Pre

7. Quad Artera Pre

The new Quad Artera Pre is not only a luxurious design, but also a signature transparent and energetic sound. The device easily makes your feet dance on their own, and the built-in phono preamplifier makes it easy to add a vinyl record player to the system – even one equipped with an MC pickup head. The powerful power supply deserves special respect, and the total weight of the model, almost eight kilograms, seems like a gift for such a price.

Pros: Transparent and rhythmic presentation

Cons: We would like more thunderous bass

Verdict: Quad Artera is very good!

Specifications:

Frequency response – 20 – 20,000 Hz | Signal to noise ratio – 110 dB | THOI – 0.02% | Phono stage – MM/MC | Weight – 7.8 kg

6. Holo Audio Serene

6. Holo Audio Serene

The Holo Audio Serene features a fully discrete balanced design with eight stages, providing up to 130 dB of channel separation. Equipped with AudioNote Kasei and Holo Audio capacitors, Flatwire Otype transformers, Mundorf Evo Gold elements, Elna Silmic2, and Nichicon components, this set rivals preamplifiers that are ten times more expensive. The Serene by Holo Audio redefines the standards of High End audio with its luxurious and highly detailed sound signature.

Pros: Phenomenal resolution

Cons: None

Verdict: Revolutionary model

Specifications:

Frequency response – 20 – 20,000 Hz | Signal-to-noise ratio – n/a | KNI – n/a | Phono stage – no | Weight – 9 kg

5. Musical Fidelity M8s PRE

5. Musical Fidelity M8s PRE

Operating in pure class A, the Musical Fidelity M8s PRE  features an independent balanced circuit design, with each channel being powered by its own transformer delivering up to 350 VA of power, all within galvanically isolated circuits. Additionally, the MM/MS phono stage is included in the design. The resulting sound of this device is characterized by its exceptional dynamism and natural quality.

Pros: Armor-piercing design, natural sound

Cons: Slightly dark presentation

Verdict: Musical Fidelity grabs the stars from the sky

Specifications:

Frequency response – 5 – 100,000 Hz | Signal-to-noise ratio – 118 dB | SOI – 0.05% | Phono stage – MM/MC | Weight – 17 kg

4. Michi P5 S2

4. Michi P5 S2

Michi P5 S2 is a continuation of the highly sought-after Rotel equipment series. This preamplifier is encased in a robust chassis weighing nearly 23 kg and features an integrated phono preamplifier, a DAC equipped with two ESS SABER ES9028PRO chips that support MQA, and a Bluetooth wireless module with aptX-HD capability. With its employment of top-notch audiophile components, this device delivers exceptional performance in terms of macrodynamics and creates an immersive “wall of sound” experience.

Pros: Sweeping and muscular sound

Cons: A little lacking in sophistication

Verdict: An excellent device both in design and sound

Specifications:

Frequency response – 20 – 20,000 Hz | Signal to noise ratio – 100 dB | THOI – 0.02% | Phono stage – MM/MC | Weight – 22.9 kg

3. AVM EVOLUTION PAS 5.3 Cellini

3. AVM EVOLUTION PAS 5.3 Cellini

AVM EVOLUTION PAS 5.3 Cellini utilizes a tube output stage, employing exclusive tubes that have a remarkable lifespan of 20,000 hours. This results in an exceptional and efficient sound quality. Not only does this device excel in its primary function, but it also provides a lavish DAC that is built upon ESS9028 PRO Double-Quad chips. Additionally, it features an advanced streamer with integrated clients such as Spotify Connect, TIDAL Connect, QOBUZ, and supports UPnP and Roon for a comprehensive streaming experience.

Pros: Extensive streaming capabilities, spectacular sound

Cons: I would like a larger scale

Verdict: Swiss army knife for sound

Specifications:

Frequency response – 20 – 20,000 Hz | Signal-to-noise ratio – n/a | KNI – n/a | Phono stage – MM/MC | Weight – 12 kg

2. T+A PSD 3100 HV

2. T+A PSD 3100 HV

The T+A PSD 3100 HV is yet another addition to the all-in-one series that doesn’t compromise on quality. This device excels as a preamplifier and its streaming capabilities, along with its proprietary DAC, deliver exceptional audio performance. Additionally, it offers features like an FM radio, FM-HD, DAB+, a Bluetooth unit, and the cherry on top is the T+A-Signal processor upscaler with four oversampling algorithms (FIR short, FIR long, Bezier/IIR, Bezier). Furthermore, the luxurious sound can be tailored to your personal preferences, making it a truly customizable experience.

Pros: The sound from the “open window” series

Cons: Nothing significant

Verdict: Reference apparatus

Specifications:

Frequency response – 0.5 – 300,000 Hz | Signal to noise ratio – 112 dB | THD – 0.001% | Phono stage – MM/MC | Weight – 26 kg

1.Aavik C-880

1.Aavik C-880

The latest Aavik C-880, weighing thirty-five kilograms, represents a groundbreaking reinvention of pre-amplification techniques. It incorporates a complex system of Tesla coils that effectively counteracts voltage surges by generating opposing surges to eliminate noise. With a total of 314 Tesla coils, 663 active square coils, and two zirconium coils, the Aavik C-880 is able to produce an impressive “black tone” effect that was previously thought to be unattainable by equipment in any price range.

Pros : Holography is in front of you

Cons: Astronomical price tag

Verdict: More than you can expect from a preamplifier

Specifications:

Frequency response – n/a | Signal-to-noise ratio – n/a | THD – 0.007% | Phono stage – no | Weight – 35 kg