Monarchy Audio 18B Preamplifiers

18B

Preamp and DAC in one chasis

User Reviews (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5  
alejandro basso   AudioPhile [Jun 30, 2013]

Mis mayores elogios al modelo 18b no necesitara un preamplificador porque lo hace todo bien, recomiendo usarlo junto con 2 dip seriados, mejora muchisimo el sonido, es mas analogico y relajado, lo uso con potencia Parasound Hca 1500a y anda muy bien, con monitores que arme con audiotechnology de 6.5" y tweeter scan speak 9700, consigan un modelo 18b, no se arrepentiran , saludos.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Harald Feller   Audiophile [Oct 10, 2000]
Strength:

High quality honest reproduction of music - not only with 300B-tubed audio-systems

Weakness:

The 18B works the best with Monarchy's DIP

The 18B (specially with Monarchy's DIP) is a bargain.
It makes so much good in quitness, factor of time, correctness of reproduction - both: dynamic and color of instruments. Classical music (Chesky's Leibowitz-Beethoven or Leonid Kogan's violin on EMI) as well as jazz (Keith Jarrett/Ralph Towner on ECM or Pharoah Saunders/John Coltrane on Impulse) are played with a richness of musicality even much more expensive components cannot offer.
A very critical professional listener said to me after an audio-session with my system: Those who want more must give good reasons for their wishes.
The Monarchy-combination brings peace and harmony into the listening-room. Forgotten test- and audio-magazines, disappeared the restless search for the next "better" component. There is only you and the music.

Similar Products Used: Audio Alchemy
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Andrea Ciuffoli   Audiophile [Oct 10, 2000]
Strength:

The D18 model give a very fine sound near to analog signal.

Weakness:

Use this with a good amplifier to get the best performances (class A or tube amplifier)

This product have an incredible quality on price.
Any CD from Classical to Rock is reproduced with a fine sound and without coloration.
I suggest it to anyone that have a normal CDPlayer with digital output.
I have used this product also with very cheap CDplayers like the Philips CD723.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Damien   Audio Enthusiast [Dec 14, 2000]
Strength:

See below

Weakness:

See below

This entire review of the 18B is done with reference to the GDA-600, a highly rated unit and an outstanding value. Also take note that the DAC doubling ('piggyback') upgrade was performed on the 18B.

Gear used:
NAD CD502 performing transport duties.
Adcom GFP-565 as control center
NAD 216THX driving a pair of
Platinum Studio-1s

Good cables used to connect all components.

The 18B provides a very detailed sound, able to reproduce even the faintest of signals. It draws out quite a lot of information. The soundstage is broad and deep and impressive.

The GDA-600 in contrast does not have quite the soundstage, especially the depth. In spite of the fact that the 600 uses 20-bit chips opposed to the 18-bit 18B, it just does not provide the fine detail that the 18B does.

The 600's main strength is in it's warmth. The 18B can be cold and brash at times, especially with lousily engineered CDs but generally speaking I found the 18B to be quite genuine and true to the music. A trumpet sounded more like a trumpet. A voice sounded more like a voice than the 600.

I understand you can pick up an 18B brand-new from the factory for like $300. This is a fantastic value. I've seen them going used for around $200...this is almost theft.

I heartily recommend the 18B to anyone who has a few hundred bucks and wants to be astonished by the improvement in sound quality over a lo to mid-grade cd player (It blew my NAD 502 out of the water). Be sure to get one with the chip-doubling upgrade done. If not, you can do it yourself (if you can solder and have a steady hand) or you can send it to the factory and they'll do it for you.

Similar Products Used: Adcom GDA-600
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Patrick Mattucci   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 15, 2002]
Strength:

Excellent build quality. Good looks. Ability to bypass preamp for an uncolored performance. Honesty in engineering!

Weakness:

Can't drive all amps. Gain is not as high as it could be.

I've had this piece for quite a while. It's been just laying around the house and I had some extra time on my hands, so I figured.........PLUG IT IN! Let's see how it compares to the rigs I've progressed to over the past couple of years.
I forgot how heavy the unit is. I removed the hood. WOW!!! CC. Poon knows how to build em! How does he do this so cheaply? There's a toroidal power supply. All leads are as short as possible and well laid out. The circuit board is a fine glass epoxy type. The shielding is intelligent and well thought out. Not clever....just honest in a way that gives you a warm fuzzy that this was money well spent.
The sound???????????????
Surprisingly good. I connected this directly to my Electrocompaniet AW250 DMB power amp(250 watts per channel pure class A). Fed it a wonderful digital diet from my trusty and recently upgraded Wadia Model 8 transport via the AES/EBU (Transparent Cable) and used Kimber Hero RCA analog cables to the amp. From there is a pair of Stealth Audio's finer silver cables feeding my Talon Audio Peregrines. I let things warm up and...........VERY NICE!! Very nice indeed. The soundstage was accurate with most cuts. Not as deep or focused as I'm accustomed to with the rig I use now, but hell, this is a fraction of my current investment. Detail in spades, except that last ounce of decay I love so much from piano, guitar and cymbals. Still, one only need remind oneself of the cost here and all is forgiven. Bass extension was excellent. Much better than I suppose it has any right to. I say this because I must give the devil his due and admit that it was neck and neck with my current set-up. Bass pitch was another thing. It didn't cut it against the better rig. I attribute this to detail more than anything else. I feel that bass pitch is actually more of a semi- micro dynamic than anything else. But the extension was great. This baby retains the weight that exists in my recordings.
What more can I say? This is a product that many people will pass by because Monarchy, despite it's cult status, doesn't advertise. That and the fact that this unit may be all but out of production by now.........
But consider this and consider it an open challenge to CC. Poon himself: CC, I have spent thousands on my digital rig and I love it. You have gone farther with a few hundred bucks than some manufacturers go with a couple grand. PLEASE find a way to give us upsampling to 192 khz and keep it under $1900.00. Retain the build quality you have produced throughout your line. I guarantee you that you will clean the (digital) clocks of your competion and make many a soul happy that he/she didn't forsake redbook for some new and unestablished format in turmoil.

This product gets my highest value rating!

Similar Products Used: Audio Research. Muse. Pass labs. Dodson. Wadia. MSB. Sonic Frontiers. Perpetual Technologies. Electrocompaniet
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-5 of 5  

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