All this information is probably available from any Allnic dealer or at the Allnic website or by searching for a review on-line. I can't help you with actual facts, but it is impossible that there would be "no loading". What you seem to be concerned about is whether there is a facility to adjust loading. Otherwise, the loading is likely to be a fixed value for each of the two major classes of phono cartridge, an industry standard value for MM (typically 47K ohms) or for MC (typically 100 ohms).
Now I will search to see how long it takes to answer your question in further detail.
From a review:
"The voltage gain of the MC section is variable, as it’s able to be switched between an indicated 22dB, 26dB, 28dB and 32dB. However, because the MC section includes a fixed gain stage with a voltage gain of 40dB, the actual gains are 62dB, 66dB, 68dB and 72dB. When you switch gain on the MC section, you also necessarily switch input impedances, which Allnic confusingly labels as ×13, ×20, ×26 and ×40, stating only that the highest input impedance the MC section offers is 280Ω. In fact, according to Kang Su Park, the corresponding impedances are 29Ω, 69Ω, 117Ω and 278Ω. In each case these are suitable for cartridges ‘up to 29Ω,’ ‘up to 69Ω’, ‘up to 117Ω’ and ‘up to 278Ω’." That should answer your question regarding the use of MC cartridges.
Without spending more time (5 minutes so far), the MM section is likely to present a standard 47K ohm load. The forte of this unit is probably to use it with MC cartridges.
Lewm, thanks for your response. Of course, what I meant to ask is whether there is a facility for adjusting loading.
I also read the review. A bit confusing, but, the way I read it, it looks like the loading is fixed according to the gain? So,
62 db gain = 29 Ohms
66 db gain = 69 Ohms
68 db gain = 117 Ohms
72 db gain = 278 Ohms?
Is this correct?
As an example, If I choose to use 66 db of gain, 69 Ohms may not be optimum for the cartridge I use. This ultimately affects the sound quality of the phono system. For a phono preamp costing $3k, this seems odd? Am I missing something?
Any Allnic H-1201 owners out there? Your experiences with this pre-amp?
I've owned a H-1201 for a couple of years now. Great phono stage, IMHO.
I run my Transfiguration Phoenix S at the +26 setting, sounds great.
$3K seems to be a lot of money for you, but remember, the H1201 is Allnic Audio's entry level phono stage. Of the 5 phono stages in their lineup, the H1201, at $3K is the least expensive, the baby.
The Allnic's are famous for their transformers, not their loading resistors.
Obviously, if you're the type that loves tweaking, and playing around with VTA, Azimuth, VTF, loading, etc., then maybe this is not the phono stage for you. I do know guys who adjust the VTA for every LP they spin. If this is you, then the H1201 is not for you.
I have owned more expensive phono stages that were not user resistance loading friendly. I sent my Walker Audio phono stage back to Lloyd Walker if I wanted to change the loading/gain, as there was soldering involved, with allegedly very fragile nude resistors.
I've heard that Tom Evans phono stages also have to be sent to the factory to adjust the loading/gain.
Not every manufacturer thinks that those tiny dip switches are the best answer to loading, in a puritanical sense.
Everyone is different. If you want to play around with loading, get a phono stage that allows you to do that. If you want bass and treble controls, get a preamp that has those features.
I agree with Jmcgrogan2's post above. BTW; I also own the H-1201.
You can always direct questions to Albertporter (Audiogon member) that is a dealer for Allnic, and I'm sure he can answer any question you might have regarding the Allnic line. Albert is an all around good guy!
Louis, You’ve got the right idea, for MC, but the wrong correspondence between db of gain and resistance. The values are stated in reverse order in the review, gain vs resistance. I think it would be as follows:
62 db gain = 278 Ohms = 13X gain
66 db gain = 117 Ohms = 20X
68 db gain = 69 Ohms = 26X
72 db gain = 29 Ohms = 40X
In other words, as gain goes up, resistance goes down, because you are using transformers with increasingly higher turns ratios to get more gain.
For MM, I would guess the MM inputs bypass all of the 4 permalloy SUTs and end up with the 40db total gain that is inherent to the RIAA section (adequate for most MMs, perhaps a little low for some MI types). Also, since the impedance seen is equal to the value of the static load resistor divided by the square of the turns ratio, for MC, we can extrapolate back using any of the above set of data points to get the value of the load resistor seen by the MM cartridge (and also at the secondaries of each of the 4 SUTs), which would be 47K ohms, as predicted and as is typical.
(For 40X gain, that means the turns ratio is 1:40. The square of 40 is 1600. 47K divided by 1600 is 29 ohms, as shown above.)
Thanks to all for your input!
Hello: just picked up a used 1201. Fantastic improvement over my little IFi amp...
question to other 1201 owners: on mine, the light over the mute button is a bit brighter than the light over the power button... is that normal ?
lovely sounding amp !
Yes. I like to listen in the dark and those little lights are bright? One piece of electrical tape wasn’t enough. Needed to double up and even then, I could still see the mute button through the doubled up tape.
Enjoy the Allnic. Since you bought used, she should be nicely burned in.