Considering moving to separates with a tube preamp-appreciate recommendations

I currently drive Dynaudio Evoke 50 speakers with a Hegel H390 integrated amp. The Hegel also functions as my DAC and streamer.

I use an Elac Alchemy PPA-2 phono pre with a Technics SL-1200G turntable.

I also have a Denon DCD-A110 SACD player.

I've been pleased with this setup, but enjoy trying new combinations of gear, so I'm considering moving to separates for the preamp and amp. I'd like to try a tube preamp mated to a solid state class A/B amp.

I'm considering something used in the $3-$4K neighborhood for the preamp. PrimaLuna EVO 400, Rogue RP-7, and PS Audio BHK Signature are at the top of my list. 

Potential used stereo solid state amps in the $4-$6K range include the Parasound JC5, PS Audio BHK 250, or maybe Yamaha M-5000 or Rotel/Michi S5. I'd also consider something from Mark Levinson or Modwright if it was in the price range.

The Bel Canto EX-1 amp intrigues me too, but it's class D, and I'm not sure about it...

Appreciate input form anyone with experience with these options (or others in these price ranges).



Look at the Decware Zen Triode Preamp.  May have to find one used unless you don’t mind the waiting list. Pure magic. 

I have a Linear Tube Audio MicroZotl, less than $2000. Read the reviews, compared to preamps many times it's price. David Berning design, made in Maryland. I have used it for two years with a variety of power amps. Check it out, you can't go wrong with this.


Hi this is a little different but also on the path of what you’re asking. Look into the Sonnet Morpheus DAC and the BMC Ultradac. both around $3,200. They have very interesting pre-amps in there. The Morpheus is a very special dac with pre-amp that is worthy of some reading.


For me, I lean more towards the BMC ultradac since I own the BMC amp and the dac/amp combo has some special tech that allows me to remove the need of a pre-amp in the system.

Hegel 390 is an excellent integrated. Your issue, as has been pointed out, is Dynaudio Evoke 50. That's their second from bottom lineup. Stop trying to fix the preamp etc and adding more clutter in pursuit of a delusion. Look at better speakers, including Dynaudio's own lines up from Evoke. Perhaps a Harbeth or KEF Reference series.