This Quicksilver should fit the bill. The remote is for volume only.
Here's another good option. I believe the output impedance is 2 kOhm and I don't know what input impedance is on your amp, so something to check. If you're after transparency, this will be tough to beat.
Here's a review for more info FWIW...
Best of luck.
The preamp I chose is the Grounded Grid kit from Transcendent Sounds. I upgraded it with silver hookup wire, Goldpoint step attenuator and switches, and Bent Audio remote volume control. I also used NOS Amperex 12AU7 tubes, and Clarity Caps output caps. This thing sounds tremendous.
I assume you must have built the Elekit 300B, so if so, this would be a great project for you. The basic kit runs $499. With just a few part upgrades, it's an amazing bargain.
Enjoy, and regards,
Tim de Paravicini is well known to be a great designer/engineer (he designed the tube electronics in the analog recorder Kav Alexander uses for his superb Water Lily label albums), yet his EAR-Yoshino amps and pre-amps remain largely ignored by audiophiles. His 868L pre-amp fits your needs, and is occasionally available used for around $3,000. His 912 pre-amp is probably more than you require, and it costs considerably more anyway (one just sold on Audiogon for $8,000).
A few questions. How did you use the Freya, tube gain, jfet buffer, or passive ? I could understand the sources sounding better direct to the amplifier. Are you happy with the sound of each connected to the amp ? I suppose what I am getting at, would you prefer passive, or active, as the Freya has an amazing volume set up, and if it does not sound good to you, even in passive mode, maybe it is the extra set of interconnects. BTW, I own a Luminous Audio Axiom II, with Walker Mod, single ended, 3 pair in, 2 pair out, with remote for volume, mute, led readout ( six levels ), and, I LOVE IT. Tim Stinson is the man ( owner ) of the company, and is extremely helpful and passionate about music reproduction and customer service, before, during, and after the sale. Enjoy ! MrD.
I was just looking at your amp. There's plenty of room on the back for another pair of RCA inputs. And no you don't have to mess with the face plate all you need is to be able to switch between the two so you put a simple switch right there in the back corner.
Let's see... spend $499 to spend 10 hours making a hundred solder connections, or spend $50 (if that) to spend one hour making 4 or 5.
So save three grand. Plus eliminate the interconnect you won't need. Plus eliminate the power cord you won't need. Plus eliminate the risk of the new pre not sounding as good. Plus best of all now you are a modder, which is measurably proven to be one million times cooler.
Wait- did you say 300B amp? That's tubes. Sorry. Just a sec. Residential fire hazard, lethal voltage factor, carry the three...... okay, what I thought... THREE million times cooler!
I agree with mrdecibel here. I would try the Freya in "passive" mode to see if you like the sound and to see if it is similar to running the DAC/phono direct to your amp. That would give you an idea if a passive preamp would work for you, though I don't know that any other "true passive" would really be better than the Freya. There are some passive preamps that have more than just a volume control and add things such as output transformers that can change the character of the sound - this gets into the exotic passive preamp area.
Another idea: It's about a $600 investment test, but you could try putting in a quad set of PSVANE CV181-TII tubes in your Freya. That would definitely increase the resolution and quality of the Freya, but like any other preamp, it will still not be the same as direct/passive. Although, many preamps will add a "magic" to the sound that can be desired
Cables - the extra set of cables between preamp and amp could also color or slightly the sound as well.
Channel Islands Audio PLC•1 MKII Remote Passive Line Controller
Very transparent in my system, but I need more inputs and the tape loop.
Millercabon, Your advice is smart and your post funny. Nice work.
Modifying the Elekit is not going to work because there's limited room inside the chassis to tie in another set of RCA inputs. And, even if I did, it wouldn't give me a remote. I agree though that's a great mod to do if it were feasible. I actually think one set of inputs is the Elekit's Achilles heel.
I'm still researching all the great suggestions here.
The best amp for HiEnd, IMO, is tube amp with 1 RCA input. More inputs with a lot of connections, switches and solders lead to decreasing of quality of sounding. Also and remote control. Every passive and added active component on the paths of sound decrease quality. Real tube sound comes from min. components for modes of every stage. /My 1 cent/.