Boulder 2008

Looking in to a new phono stage. considering the BOulder 2008. Anyone have any experiance with this. Is it one of the best?

Assuredly a very good phono equaliser. It's a serious product and far from the (miserable) stuff usually available. Whether it's the best, I wouldn't know and, frankly, I couldn't know (how would I judge that:)).

It's unfortunate that at its price (25?30k?) it doesn't include an inverse riaa s/where at one of the inputs.

It's appropriately versatile of course and you also have access to different -- non riaa -- equalisation curves which is very useful if you have vintage LPs (you get a different small circuit board of sorts). They cost extra but aren't ruinous afaik.

It's a very complicated circuit, btw, and don't even think of "tweaking" or "improving"... If anything, ask Boulder to provide whatever tickles yr fancy (i.e. if you want to do away with the 75us pole or play with the idea of a 3,18us, I think) -- at the price, Boulder can easily oblige.

FOr that matter, FM Acoustics also offer an excellent phono equaliser which is less ruinously expensive. There are a few other stratospheric phonos too (most of which I haven;t heard) -- reportedly, one of these made by an A'gon member (Raul -- there's a thread about it). Cheers
Well for what its worth..
I own and very much enjoy a 2008 phono preamp. I have auditioned other phono preamps (albeit none costing nearly as much) in my system and while some were very good, none were able to deliver the whole musical package like the Boulder. It has a smoothness and a dynamic realism that I have not heard with any other component in my system. I agree it is an extravagance and very pricey, I did however purchase the dealer demo unit and it made it a little bit less so. Besides, after hearing many other units at home, my wife, a total non audiophile claimed it was "by far the best sounding music she has ever heard in our room"...what more need be said.
Relax and enjoy. Jerry
I had gotten some confused about the phono between Boulder 2008,FM 222mk3 and Lyra 4.2se.
It is had to A/B test them at the same time.
Is there anyone who can explain the differences and C/P value about these 3 expensive phonogeer?
THanks And Waiting.
A friend has that phono stage and the Boulder line stage in his system. The rest of the electronics, including his DAC, are tube based. I have not heard either Boulder piece in my own system, so it is hard to say with certainty what aspects of the sound I hear is attributable to the Boulder pieces.

The sound of the system is quite good. But, there is some of that pervasive, artificial hardness or edge to the initial attack of notes in the music that is characteristic of solid state gear (this tends to make some music sound "mechanical" and artificial). If you are sensitive to this and don't like it, then, the Boulder is NOT a cure for what some of us don't like about solid state. I've heard solid state that delivers less of that quality (e.g., the Connoisseur linestage, Ayre gear), though none of the solid state stuff delivers the sense of real body and presence of performers like good tube gear.

I like the fact that the Boulder phono stage is adjustable in so many ways (including the use of different plug in cards for equalization). However, it does not have enough gain for extremely low output cartridges -- that friend's Allaerte cartridge is extremely low in output and phono reproduction is quite noisy. The noise did not bother me that much, but, this system is in a custom designed and built room which is totally isolated from noise (including a special HVAC system) so I bet any noise in the system is a big disappointment to the owner.

In the crazy expensive category, I personally like the Audionote (uk) and Kondo gear. In the not-quite-so-crazy price category, I like my Viva Fono stage, but it takes so work to optimize that fono stage (hard wiring loading resistors, swapping tubes, etc.).