Only half an answer. I was looking to replace an ARC LS25mkll with an X1 or Capri. I found a Capri at a good price, hooked it up and stopped looking. Also added the outstanding internal phono stage.
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same reply as JI35 except i found and went with the X1. have heard the capri before and enjoyed it. if the X1 didn't hit the mark, the capri was on the short list to try. lots of positive comments on both these pre's. think it'll boil down to what you're personal preferences and/or good synergy with the rest of your gear. keep your eys' peeled for both like JI35 and i did. grab one or the other and give it a try. easy to flip piece's with minimal lose if you buy um right.
I know this is surprising but I compared the Pass XP20 to the Capri and preferred the Capri in my system. The presentations were very different. The Pass is leaner, cleaner, and more detailed. The Capri warmer, with more rounded edges. But the Capri is hardly a fuzzy sounding preamp. I had to try quite a few preamps before I found one that I preferred over the Capri. I was sad to part with it.
I agree--you just have to try them both. I tried both a Capri and an X1 in my system and settled on the x1 based only on sound quality in my system. The Capri's low end was lacking in my setup. With respect to features and usability, the Capri is super, with great volume control. The X1 has very steep db attenuation with each click and a narrower range of attenuation than the Capri. I now have a Pass XP10 which replaced the X1. I would hardly characterize it as "lean" as an earlier post suggested, but again, it all depends on system interaction. I really like the XP 10's depth, width, height and solidity of soundstage, overall detail but with great smoothness, and new volume control setup. They advertise it as sounding great at low listening levels, and that claim is 100% spot on. Very easy to find a good level with almost any recording. Is this worth twice what you'd pay for an X1 or Capri? Hard to say. I think so.
I agree with Swanny in some respects -- trying them both is best, as both Swanny and I did. I didn't think the XP20 was lean sounding -- it just sounded leaner and less musical to me, in my system, than the Capri did. I also agree with Swanny's characterization of the Capri's bottom end -- perhaps not lacking (in my system), but a little loose. Which is why I ultimately paid a lot more more for the Nagra. One other note on the Capri -- I found it superb at low volume levels (as was the Pass).
Now, back to Tvad's points -- these are jut Swanny's and my experience with these components in our systems. With both of these components there are risk free ways to try them both out in *your* system. A pain, yes, but worth it.
thanks for all the inputs, all. i do agree with the necessity of trying the component in my own environment and evaluating based on my personal predilections. in this case, i've decided to start with the X1 and see how it sounds, if for no other reason than i appreciated the communications from mark at reno and it's from the same company as my power amp.
If you are in touch with Mark @ Reno, you may also want to audition a used XP-10 to compare to the X-1. They do sound different. I had the X-1 and now own the XP-20. It's a different price point, but the sonic differences are interesting to compare. The Pass pre amps work extremely well with Pass amps if that is what you have and that MAY offer some compatibility that you won't find with the Capri, though I have not heard it.
Capri: I listen alot of instruments, clasical, and jazz and I am so in love with the Capri especially when Analysis Plus cables are in use.
-Clean, detail, and moving are its main characteristic.
-Won't be polite and lay back as many other Pre's.
I haven't heard any of Pass Pre yet but if 1 day I mainly listen to vocals or want a fuller body sound, I will probably consider Bat, Mark Levinson, Plinius before I get to the Pass Pre.
Keep us posted on how u like the Pass Pre and what's its characteristic will be like. Best
- CDP: Meridian.
- Pre: JR Capri
- Amp: JR 102 (100w, D-class)
- Spks: Sonus Faber Grand Piano
XP series is warm and full, IMHO. Mark at Reno says it has a "rolled off lower end" but I wouldn't characterize it as such--I have plenty high end extension--it's just that the soundstage is so danged well defined and solid. Each instrument has it's own distinct line and presence, yet it all falls together musically, with the XP10.