All turntables have phono preamp that is responsible for producing phono output and the preamp is needed before it is connected to an audio output. When you are getting into vinyl even if it is vintage vinyl, you need a preamp since the sound that directly comes out of the stylus and cartridge is weak which makes the frequency distorted. In that case you not only have to buy a turntable, simplifier and speakers but you also need a phono preamp. In some cases, a turntable will come with an inbuilt preamp but most of the time it is not the best quality which might oblige you to get another one. Some of the best phono preamps that you can choose from include:
Vincent – PHO- 700
This is a very high end phono preamp that looks like a component system on its own. It has been made sophisticatedly and even has a window that allows you to see all the internal components. It consists of two separate sections, the top section and the low section. The top section comprises of the hybrid tune and the solid state amplifier while the lower section is the power supply section. The power supply has a 9-pin connector through which it supplies power making every component to receive the right voltage of power and noise reducing features. Just like many preamps, it supports both the MC and MM cartridges which are a big plus.
It is a bit pricey but that is because of its great features and quality builds. Its set back however is the fact that it has the two-chassis design and also has a maximum of 40 hours of play time.
Cambridge Audio CP2 Phono Preamplifier – Black
Cambridge audio is a company that has been in the scene for quite a while now. The preamp has been made in such a way that is not a valve pump or a regular solid state amp. The input has been made in such a way that it has discrete transistors as opposed to integrated circuits.
It supports both MM and MC cartridges which helps in creating a balance. It also has an equalization that is passive which may be due to the discrete transistors.
As much as it is not as good as the Vincent –PHO-700, it is the best mid-range preamp that you will find and will still give you great service but at a cheaper price tag.
Little Bear T7 Tube Phono Stage RIAA MM Turntable Pre-Amplifier & HiFi AUX Preamp
This is the best entry level preamp that you will find in the market. It has been made in an attractive way with an aluminum box with two tubes sticking out of it. Not only can it work as a phono preamp but it can also be a Hi-Fi preamp as well. It is great for correcting the RIAA distortion that is normally applied to vinyl records. There are many replacement tubes that you can choose from and the phono preamp also comes with widened soundstage and warm tone.
There are any other phono preamps that are great; those are just but a few.