Arc Ref 2, Mk1 v. Mk II

Has anyone upgraded or compared the two preamps? I currently have the Mk 1 version coupled with a Classe amp and Magnepan speakers.
Many thnaks
Wow! I am going through this right now. Yes i have compared the two. In my system, Krell fpb-300 amp and Thiel speakers I had a chance to audition these when my preamp was in for service. I bought the loaner and told them to keep my old one. The MK I has a wonderful bloom that you loose when you go to the MKII. Also I prefer the more forward soundstage of the MKI. The MKII almost sounds solid state to me, in my system. I am now exploring some advice for NOS tubes. Good Luck.......Vader
My evaluation was totally different. The Ref 2 MKI was boomy in the mid bass, very noisy and tonally off. Although it is still quite good, the MKII using the 6h30 tubes is much better. It is a bit quieter, faster and more tonally accurate.

I would recommend you listen to the Aesthetix Callisto MK II as it is in a totally different league. The other preamp that is very good is the BAT VK-50SE.

If you have any questions, email me directly.

Good Luck!
Jtinn is right on with his eval, however this is exactly the same description I gave. Notice the "to me, in my system" phrase. I dig the mid bass bloom which I also mention. This to me is what I never had before. I always used only solid state gear. The preamp I traded in for this was the Krell KRC-HR, Very fast and very detailed! This is my first tube piece and the MKII sounds less like tubes to me. I loved it, just dug the bloom of the MKI.