Anthem Pre 1 Preamplifiers

Anthem Pre 1 Preamplifiers 

DESCRIPTION

All tube preamplifier with phono stage

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-6 of 6  
[Sep 11, 2008]
tannoyya
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

lovely pre amp top grade parts
off board power supply with gz34 tube
problem free use

Weakness:

err err not made any more

this preamp is a rare find and what price to find something like this today, lived with this for 9 years now and not a problem, this pre has had it heaters on 24/7 for ten years yes ive change the valves once but never had one go pop. please sonic get back to building tube amps.
used with tannoy 15" and yamahas

Similar Products Used:

trany bits and bobs just can not listen to a trany pre after useing this 2 mins tops

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Feb 15, 2008]
HARRY
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

RELIABLE, GREAT SOUND, OFF BOAD POWER SUPPLY, SONIC FRONTIERS

Weakness:

NOTHING WHAT SO EVER BUT VERY HARD TO FIND ONEARC

OH WHAT A LOVELY VALVE PRE AMP WITH PHONO, I HAD THIS FOR ABOUT 7YEARS NOW AND HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO REPLACE IT WITH AND AT WHAT PRICE SO IM KEEPING IT.
I'VE NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEMS WHAT SO EVER NOT EVEN A POP OR BANG, I LOVE SONIC FOR THIS

Similar Products Used:

ARC,QUAD, JONH SHEARNE, ROKSAN,

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Nov 30, 2002]
Vincent Chen
AudioPhile

Strength:

Isolated Power Supply with tube Rectifier,detailed sound. Very good build quality.

Weakness:

No mono switch. But that is it. Volume Control..that is the stock one.

The Anthem I am using has been hot rodded and for the most part for the better. The cheap Volume pot has been replaced with a click type Attenuator, and more filter caps and a bypassed balance control and a deleted phono switch inside. Do all these changes make the Pre-1 better. I believe the additional Caps and the Volume pot are the most worthwhile. The amount of detail is about what I expect from Sonic Frontiers. Which is to say just great thank you. The midrange and highs are clear and free. Nothing like tubes to avoid the glare and edge of most solid state that would be in this price range. A built in phono stage is a plus, but I have not used it yet. I play jazz,bluegrass,classical, and rock, and I am constantly rewarded with a great performance. The dual pre-outs make bi-wire amplification easy so I may run solid state for the woofer, and tubes for the mids and highs. Very nice indeed. I may try different tubes to get even better performance, that is including the Rectifier Tube in the power supply. Overall, I am very pleased with the Anthem. Too bad Sonic Frontiers is no more, and that Anthem has gone way of the Home Theater crowd. They really had something special for the Stereo folks out here. V.C.

Similar Products Used:

Nad,Conrad Johnson,Rotel...etc.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
[Jun 06, 2001]
peter
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

wide open soundstage, clean, dynamic, tubular liquidity

Weakness:

no remote, no headphone jack

Great tube preamp. Make sure to use Mullard rectifier tubes. Also, choose of input and phono stage drivers have a BIG influence in the sound of the linestage. I found using RFT 12AT7s in the phono stage give full sounding linestage with Sovteks in the driver stage and 7308s in the linestage.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Dec 28, 1998]
Chris Cusano
an Audiophile

I bought the Anthem Pre1 (not to be confused with the Pre1L or Pre1P - it is their predecessor and basically the Pre1L and Pre1P are a split Pre1) as a demo with the 5 year warranty for $800. I was told that Anthem actully feels they took a step backwards when the did away with the Pre1 and replaced it with the Pre1L and Pre1P. Apparently they did this for economic reasons - at the Pre1 price poit, they were not making much profit given the quality of parts and the workmanship. The build quality and parts selection is excellent, better then I have seen in other preamps at that price point. It is an all tube design, with a separate chassis for the power supply. It also uses a GZ-34 rectifier tube for the high voltage - this provides a soft start capability. Tube rectification also eliminates the harshness that solid state rectification adds.
I am using the Pre1 with 300B monoblock amps driving KEF 105 speakers. My analog source is a VPI-19jr with AQ PT-6 arm, Sumiko BPS cartridge, and XLO 103 Pro phono cable. My digital source is a Rotel CD player used as a transport, driving a Sonif Frontiers Ultrajitterbug (jitter filter) and a Sonic Frontiers Assemblage DAC2 with parts upgrade kit installed.

The Pre1 replaced a PS Audio 5.5 solid state preamp, which I ran in the passive mode. The only step backwards was that going from a passive pre to an active I picked up some tube noise (audible only next to the speaker), but this is mainly because my 300B amps are on the sensitive side - if I added a voltage divider, the noise would become inaudible.

Now on to sound. The Pre1 greatly improved the CD sound - the DAC2 was a little harsh going thru the passive pre. It also gained some dynamics. Percussions, voices and cymbals sounded more realistic, and more natural.

On the analog side, the biggest gain was in the warmth of the midrange. Soundstage and imaging also improved.

Overall I am very happy with the Preamp. As note below, I will probably tweak the parts some to gain a little more performance.

I should note that I replaced the 12AT7 with some Mullards, kept the Sovtek 6922's (for now) and replaced the Chinese GZ-34 with a Mullard. I will probably change some of the internal parts in the future - replace the Noble volume pot with a ALPS, replace the coupling caps with Hovlands, and replace the wiring (currently Kimber TCSS) with Kimber AGSS (silver).

Stock, it is a decent preamp. They are available as used or demo for $700 to $800, and I would strongly recommend it to someone who wants an all tube preamp with phono. I would like to run it against the AI Modulus 3A, but I have not tracked down one with the upgrades yet.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
[Aug 21, 1999]
Ian
an Audio Enthusiast

I've owned this preamp for almost two and a half years and it stills impresses me. When I first heard this after owning an NAD 114, my jaw hit the floor. I obviously never heard what a glimpse of "high end" should sound. My current system is a McCormack DNA 0.5 Deluxe, Rega Planet CD player, Vandersteen 2Ce's. CD interconnects are Nordost Black Nights.
Just recently a friend of mine bought a Classe' CAP-80. I was very impressed with the detail that was lacking in my system. Fortunately, one of my Sovtek 6922 tubes started to make noise, so I decided to upgrade. After doing some research, I decided on the NOS Valvo 6DJ8's. After about 40 hours of burn-in, the Anthem is in another world. The detail is there with a rich mid-range and taught bass. These Valvo's have improved the system so much that I doubt that any inconnect/speaker cable would make the difference. It's as if I purchased a brand new component. Make a note that if you buy any Anthem preamp with Sovtek tubes, replace them immediately. You'll be happy that you did.


OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
[May 12, 2000]
Billy-Bob
Casual Listener

Strength:

Simplicity, great sound

Weakness:

Lack of features

I recently upgraded from a NAD pre-amp that I thought was pretty good (for the money) with an Anthem Pre-1. I had just replaced my solid state amp with a Counterpoint SA-12. I was pleased with the sound, but was not overly impressed. I knew that my amp was not a world-beater, but was expecting it to sound much better. I was skeptical that a tube pre-amp could substantialy turn my system around, but started looking for an affordable one, anyway. Most tube pre-amps were beyond my budget, but I received a tip to look for an Anthem Pre-1 (which I found on the net). That turned out to be great advice. The Anthem made all the difference in the world to the sound quality of my system. I am very impressed that a pre-amp could make such a huge difference. I'll bet that you would have a hard time finding a tube pre-amp that sounds as good as this one for the money.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-6 of 6  

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