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Pass Labs X1
8 Reviews
rating  5 of 5
MSRP  5500.00
Description: 


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Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Lai Si Meng a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 27, 2002

Bottom Line:   
The Pass Labs X1 joins the top echleon of world-class preampliers and to my ears, the best solid state piece in providing vacuum-tube warmth on top of it's sterling solid state qualities. Holographic images were thrown amidst a deep and wide soundstage giving a distinct 3-dimensional sound-field. In a word- the listening experience was life-like and real. I listened to life performances and I can say with conviction that the X1 reproduces music that closely resembles the real thing. It's music making capabilities are excellent being able to provide the whole spectrum of recorded music that is available in the source discs. Long hours of listening remains enjoyable with no fatigue to the ears. There is no hint of any grain nor harshness, the transients are precise, bass is solid and deep and the mids are absolutely accurate- the X1 brings one to an emotional experience in listening to recorded music. I would recommend this preamplifier to anyone who desires to have an emotional involvement with music while enjoying the accuracy and experience of a life performance.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001

Purchased At:   Center Circle Audio



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Al a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: February 15, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Great pre-amp. Very smooth, warm and detail, huge soundstage, also very quiet. At this price range probably the best. If you need more detail read the review by Absolute sound.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2001



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Steve H a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: February 13, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Got a deal at audiogon on this 2 month old piece in MINT condition. Wow, this is amazing. I LOVE the build quality and sound this pre puts out. I have revel Studios with a sunfire signature amp with about 1k in cables and was using my Krell HTS 2 until this came in. The sound is so sweet, and airy. WOnderful detail. At the price I paid, it is easily a 5 star performer. At retail of $5500 Im not so sure, but I love this preamp. Now I am seling my Sunfire amp to get the X250 from PASS. Highly recommended.

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2001

Price Paid:    $2300.00

Purchased At:   Audiogon



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Arthur Macabe a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: November 5, 2001

Bottom Line:   
Considering its price point, the x1's line stage's level of performance is nothing short of sensational. Its blend of tonal neutrality, speed, control, and harmonic purity add up to a sure recipe for musical excellence. It is capable of competing in the highest audiophile arena, while its slight spatial reticence and textural softness are easy to live with. It should readily integrate with a diverse range of systems. The x1's ability to drive a variety of amps and exotic cables allows it to comfortably slip into an existing system without adverse complications. Let me take this opportunity to raise my glass in a toast: to Pass labs and the design team there. Cheers!

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Price Paid:    $3500.00

Purchased At:   hifisound



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mazher Bashir JAFFAR a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: September 11, 2001

Bottom Line:   
13th September, 2001.

PASS LABS X-1 Pre-Amplifier.

Serial Number :- 010388.

Price Paid :- US $ 3,200/- + Customs Duty for Import into India .

Purchased from:- Hi End Research. SINGAPORE.

Purchased the Pass X-1 to replace the Simaudio Moon P-5 & the Bryston BP-25 pre-amplifiers. I arrived at the decision to purchase Pass after auditioning various other pre-amplifiers [as mentioned above] all in the same price range. The Pass is a great pre-amplifier, as in it does what it is meant to do, and does it in a reasonably efficient manner.

It is transparent, does not add or remove any sonic signature to the incoming signal and transmits the same to the power amplifier very efficiently.

Has a separate out board power supply. Has a trigger to switch on and off the power amplifier, this is a great feature on the pre amplifier [incidentally this feature is absent on the other models that I reviewed]

The biggest drawback or problem that is presented with the Pass X-1 is its remote control. Although made of Aluminum [as most of the good quality hi-fi gear is made of these days] is very poor both on the ergonomic and the function front. The size is awkward and does not fit in the hand well and the worst part is that the GUI [Graphical User Inter Phase] acts with a will of its own, when you reduce the volume on the remote, the volume on the pre amplifier goes up and if you increase it on the remote it continues to go up ! Really strange !

Over all I am very happy with the product. I would have liked Pass to make the sides and the top and the rear of the pre-amplifier in the same manner as they make their power amplifiers. Strong, Robust & Long Lasting. I do hope that they take a lesson from their X 600 and implement the attributes of a well built ‘Tank Like’ construction.
The only other pre-amplifier, that I found to me more transparent and sonically coherent to the Pass was the Hovland P-100 [Tube & Unbalanced Design]. I could not buy that since my system runs in a balanced mode / set up and the Hovland does not offer a ‘Balanced’ option !

Pass, make a few changes, but keep up the good work ! Finally my quest for a Pre-amplifier is over. Strongly recommended.

Testing and review carried out with :-

A] Equipment

·Audiomeca Mephisto II Transport [Serial Number 2001045]t
·Audiomeca Enkianthus 24/192 DAC [Serial Number 2001073]
·Simaudio Moon Eclipse CD Player [Serial Number A-211294-CD]
·Electrocompaniet EMC-1 CD Player [Serial Number 01334]
·Ultech Audio UCD-100 CD Player + Sonic Frontier SFD !! Mk 2
·Pass Labs X1 Pre-Amplifier [Serial Number 010388]
·Simaudio P-5 Pre Amplifier [Serial Number A-081291-PRE]
·Bryston BP-25 Pre Amplifier [Serial Number 251744]
·Bryston 7B ST Power Amplifier [Serial Number 773775 & 773793]
·Dynaudio Confidence 5 Loudspeakers [Serial Number 729879 & 729990]
·vdH [Van den Hul] ‘The Second’ Balanced XLR Interconnect
·vdH [Van Den Hul] ‘The Integration Hybrid’ RCA Unbalanced Interconnect
·vdH [Van Den Hul] ‘The Revelation’ Speaker Cable
·vdH [Van Den Hul] ‘The Mainstream Hybrid’ Power / Mains Cable

B] Music

·M.A. Recordings - Begona Olavide / Mudejar MA042A
·Water Lily Acoustics - Tabula Rasa WLA-CS-44-CD
·ECM Records – Making Music / Zakir Hussain ECM – 1349
·Moment Records – Ustad Sultan Khan MRCD – 1006
·Reference Recordings – TUTTI ! RR-906CD
·Telarc – A tribute to Oscar Peterson CD – 83401
·Chesky Records – The Raven / Rebecca Pidgeon JD 115
·Mercury – Essential / Yello 512 390 – 2

Mazher Bashir JAFFAR

13th September, 2001.

Mumbai [Bombay] INDIA

e-mail :- schwinn@bol.net.in

www.schwinnwarehousing.com

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000

Price Paid:    $3200.00

Purchased At:   Hi End Research, SINGAPORE




Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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