I have been making the slow descent into vinyl, recently. I managed to find an excellent deal on a Music Hall MMF-5 here on Audiogon. I love the turntable, but am having a bit of trouble finding a preamp to match it with. I am currently using the NAD PP2 and it doesn't have the gain I prefer or the overall sound. I would like to find a preamp with a gain of 40 or so. I've been considering the Parasound Zphono. Some say it's an excellent preamp, while others say it's noisy. I was hoping to get a few opinions before I began auditioning. I live in a rural area and will have to rely on mail order, so it will hopefullly save me a few trips to the post office. Any help is appreciated.
It still has the stock Goldring 1012GX. It tends too be a little too quiet for my taste. I would prefer something that provided a bit more vibrance. I paid about 325 for the table, so I don't want to get too crazy with the preamp. I suppose my budget is between 200-500.
Cambridge 640, not the 540. Big difference between the two. The 640 is way better than the zphono and NAD, in my opinion. It will bring a little more life out of your 1012. I've used it with the 1012 and it was a great match.