The LS9 is not tube although very nice, the original SP9 got a bad review.
11 responses Add your response
remote would help with my arthritisActually, the opposite is true. Best to move those joints to help keep them lubricated. So do what I happily did - get a Mapletree Audio 2A SE Linestage and get to moving about!
The SP-9 got bad reviews, but back then Audio Research hybrids were new and SP-9 owners and reviewers were treating them like tube preamps turning them off after an evening of listening. However, the hybrids need to be left on continuously for the best sound. The SP-9 and LS-1 originally came with Chinese 6DJ8H tubes which last about 10,000 hours. Leaving these preamps on 24/7 means replacing the tubes once a year. A small price to pay for the sonic benefits. Being almost all solid state these preamps need 3 days of warm up anyway. Many people find this hard to believe until they try it.
Well I broke down and got an ARC Sp5 for $250, but suspect based on comments here it will be bright. I do have an opportunity for an SP9 but after reading Stereophile review, I am not so sure. I do have a Quicksilver line preamp remote version available to me for $690 - any thoughts on this?
thx for your input so far.
It's all up to you. In your original post you said you wanted a "warm" tubed preamp with remote. Neither the ARC or the Quicksilver will give you that warm tubed sound, IMHO. Are they very good preamps? Yes. Are they warm and tubey sounding? No.
If you want warm and tubey sounding preamps, look for Cary or Conrad Johnson. They are not my cup of tea, too warm for me, but I know many who like them, and that seems to be what you want.
Been listening to the SP5 and really like the detail and huge soundstage, almost 3D like. If I am hearing all this, I can't imagine what the higher/better models give you.
Found the first night it sounded ok but after leaving it on, the 2nd day it just sounded fantastic.
Busy comparing it to my CJ PV10AL.