Van Alstine Omega III EC Preamplifiers

4.5/5 (2 Reviews) MSRP : $740.00

Product Description

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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by George Ollapally a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: August 10, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Going for my first preamp buy, which had to be a kit( Indian Customs charge 100% import duties on shipments of imported "luxury" goods!), I scanned the various vendors of preamp kits, until I had a few very strong words of praise for Audio by Van Alstine(AVA), MN. Their build quality was described as excellent,their approach towards customers as being a "value for money" approach. I emailed Frank Van Alstine, and after he gave me his suggestions-to go for the OmegaIII SL model, rather than the RB one-both of these are similar to but lower priced than the EC model, I ordered the SL kit. This was shipped to a friend who brought it to India as baggage(no duty)! Cost was about $400 for the 220V version kit. The instruction manual was very well writen with detaile schematics, photographs, instructions, everything. Not a single part, even the smallest one was missing. We got it easily done in a few days and it worked like a shot, the first time.

The preamp has a headphone amp which I used for a longish time since my power amp wasnt ready. It is streets ahead of the headphone amp outlet on my Yamaha AV receiver. I use Sennheiser headphones and the treble and bass come out very well on the AVA preamp. When I got my poweramp from Welborne Labs ready, I hooked up the system to my Onkyo CD changer, and was suitably gratified with the the preamp-it has enough output jacks to connect my sub, so no problem there. The volume, balance and selctor controls are very high quality(Noble, Japan)-the feel is top class. The sound is as if a veil has been removed-many of my CDs sound much better-as my teenage sons and my wife confirm. Frank Van Alsine told me, when I was in the decison making process that I would have one of the best preamps in the country where I live. At this price point I have no doubt about it. I think at a price point twice as high as mine, it could possibly meet the competition and retire with honour!

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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Factory direct

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by David Adler a an Audiophile

Date Reviewed: April 25, 1998

Bottom Line:   
I have a very complex setup and was impressed by reviews in Sensible Soundmagazine. The Omega preamp had all the features of the old Dyna and Hafler
preamps such as EPL, tone controls, two tape loops, a & b thru both channels,
etc. Phone preamp and tape buffer brought the mail order price up to a little
over $800. I had hoped to replace my old Aragon 24K preamp with that. After
a week of cooking the preamp and running listening tests I concluded that,
it was quite good but not the equal of the 24K. The Omega sounded a little
"transistory" with a slight suckout in the upper bass and lower midrange and
the highs were a little raucous. It's a well made preamp and sounds good on
its own. But, the Aragon still sounds purer and more musical. If I rate the
Aragon as a 5, then I must rarte the AVA as a 4. Van Alstine deals only by
mail order and charges a restocking fee of l2% if you return the product to him.

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Duration Product Used:   an Audiophile

Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

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