whitehart

Advantages and disadvantages of pre/power over intigrated

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Are there any disadvantages apart from footprint size?  Reason I'm asking is that  have the chance to trade in my E470 for an Accuphase pre/power and a little concerned if it's the right thing to do, as I've never owned pre/power before.

Mac

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Have you demo'ed your intergrated against the pre-power? and if so did you find there was an improvement.

Disadvantages are of course extra shelf space and extra cables, many folk nowadays are trying to reduce their box count.

Advantages, must be upgrading as you can do it in stages.

I'm sure members on here with more technical knowledge than myself will be able to enlighten you.

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Super Wammer

In general you have the advantages in separate pre/power amps of independent power supplies for each stage (though there are integrated amps with seoerate psu systems fir pre & power) which should give more 'grunt' to drive difficult loads.  

Seperation on the power amp side will also assist remove a large source of potential electrical noise from the more sensitive pre stage potentially resulting in a cleaner/more detailed sound......but this is very much dependant on the original design/circuit layout/ shielding etc.

Using separate pre etc can also allow you to experiment with valve pre and solid state power combinations etc......though in your case your keeping with the same manufacturer etc.

As the previous post has pointed out ......demo it with your existing integrated and see if it's a sonic improvement.

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After years of pre/power, I realised that I’ve neglected integrated amps. The advantage is that you know the pre and power are (should be) perfectly matched. I wonder if we make the sound worse as often as we improve it by putting together diverse pre and power amps. 

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Advantages: None

Disadvantages: Take up too much room; no real increase in SQ; manufactures way of blagging more money from you; they play on the gullible : 

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Completely wrong. Separate pre and power equals more boxes.

More boxes always equals better sound.

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I've always preferred a good integrated even though I have seperate pre and power at the moment. With an integrated you aren't paying for extra cases or cables and the pre and power halves will have been designed to work together by the designer/manufacturer. Having said that, mixing and matching pre-power combinations can be fun. Having a valve pre with a solid state power seems a popular route.

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Super Wammer
59 minutes ago, Beobloke said:

Completely wrong. Separate pre and power equals more boxes.

More boxes always equals better sound.

Currently my amp box count in my active system is 7 and shortly to increase to 8 :nerves:

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Designed to work together but not necessarily without compromise. I see the pre as an interface between source and power amp, the power amp as an interface between speaker and preamp. IMHO the easiest interface to get right is pre to power amp. So an integrated is (usually) smaller, less cases etc, as you say. However it's sonic signature will reflect the designers choices, compromises and preferences when used between his preferred source and speakers in his listening space, not necessarily (or even probably) your choices unless you have copied the designers system and room. I see integrated as convenient but far from optimal.

Sent from my BLA-L09 using Tapatalk

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The above aimed at Ian917's post, for some reason I can't edit in Tapatalk today??

Sent from my BLA-L09 using Tapatalk

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Super Wammer

I use a Luxman valve preamp with Meridian Power, considering that both boxes are pretty full of components it would be impossible to squeeze the contents into an integrated and too heavy to lift. 

Alan

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10 minutes ago, Jazid said:

Designed to work together but not necessarily without compromise. I see the pre as an interface between source and power amp, the power amp as an interface between speaker and preamp. IMHO the easiest interface to get right is pre to power amp. So an integrated is (usually) smaller, less cases etc, as you say. However it's sonic signature will reflect the designers choices, compromises and preferences when used between his preferred source and speakers in his listening space, not necessarily (or even probably) your choices unless you have copied the designers system and room. I see integrated as convenient but far from optimal.

Sent from my BLA-L09 using Tapatalk
 

Unless cost is not an issue, everything you stated about sonic signature applies equally to pre-power. 

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Posted (edited)

As Adam says. For me, ideally a pair of monos, pre amp and phono. Naturally, all with outboard power supplies :D

For valve amplifiers, there is a bit of an issue as to the line between a 'true' integrated amplifier and a power amplifier with a passive volume control and (usually) a source selector. That opens up a whole can of worms and you could stir in buffers as well.

It is anyway no longer a choice, but a sliding scale. Built in DAC? Built in streamer? Built in phono stage?

I prefer seperates because of the flexibility to change or upgrade one bit at a time, but I can see the appeal of a true 'all in one' box.

Edited by rabski
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I agree with the above regarding flexibility. I think when I was in the late 70’s early 90’s it was all about big Japanese powerhouse integrated amps with everything built in.. it was mainly British brands like Quad, Naim etc that gave the flexibility of separate pre power and was about the argument of better sound quality which what true audiophiles wanted.. 

flexibility is still appreciated today for the opportunity to upgrade either power or pre more effectively and affordability with sonic gains.

i have an integrated at my price point and a separate phonostage because I believe it offers the best option for what sound and class I want but if I was spending a lot more, I would go pre/power  

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