I don't see how anyone can answer that question for you.
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Wow,maybe if someone owns or has heard any of them? This is not a strange question to post."
I guess it all depends on what you consider strange. You actually own the preamp, but are reading reviews and asking complete strangers if your preamp is any good.
To be fair, I'll treat you're question as if it were not strange. You'll find that the most popular answer will be: The best way to tell how good the Prima Luna preamp is, is to see if you can demo one in your own system.
I don't think any of you are wrong. The OP may not have had any other experience with a better Hi Fi amp. He wants to know if it really a giant killer sounding as good as amps much more costly he himself is not familiar with. ZD -Your answer is also irrefutable - If that amp synergizes with your gear then it is obviously a great pre amp for the OP in the OPs system. In essence saying there is no better knowledge that what you have already.
Tswisla can tell the OP that yes there are better but obviously in Tswisla"s experience that would justify dumping the Dialogue for the Pass and that the OP's upgraditis is reasonable.
I have no dog in this ring and have nothing to add or subtract from the opinions already stated. I just hope I made sense.
I don't think any of you are wrong. The OP may not have had any other experience with a better Hi Fi amp. He wants to know if it really a giant killer sounding as good as amps much more costly he himself is not familiar with."
I fully understand what you're saying, but its a question that only the OP can answer because of its subjective nature. What I think is a good preamp, he may hate. There's so many factors to account for when making a selection like this, you really can't rely on other peoples opinions. And this is especially true for a preamp. Its usually the most important, and difficult component to get right. Nothing sounds worse than a preamp that doesn't work well with the other components.
Given the situation, the only recommendation that I would make, is to take your time. You're happy with the preamp you already have, so don't get rid of it until you have a definite replacement that you know you like better. Once you are able to do some comparisons, you'll find that in some cases, you won't like preamps that cost far more than the PL. That's why you need to be really careful.
Agree 100% with Zd's last paragraph in his last post. I have heard a few PrimaLuna pieces and thought they sounded terrific. Are there better? Perhaps, but you'll need to hear them to know them, and the differences will generally be subtle. I'd suggest you not worry about how the preamp stacks up to others and instead enjoy it, you have a fine unit and it works well in your system. You could spend a lot more money and not necessarily do better.
Tswisla...I own the Primaluna Dialogue Premium preamp and in "my opinion" you would have to look long and hard for a better built and sounding tube unit. I'm not saying you could not find a better sounding tube preamp or something that would better suite your likes and needs,but for me,and my tastes,I'm very happy with what the Dialogue Premium brings to the table. Good luck with your decision.
FWIW, your PrimaLuna pre amp is an excellent pre-amp, as are many others. Whether it works for you depends on three things, 1) Your other equipment with which it must synergize: 2) Your physical set up including the room itself: and, 3) most importantly, your expectations, that is its tonality. It is neither a POS or SOTA. It is just another piece of equipment (tool) used to obtain a predetermined sound.
I would be happy to use your pre-amp as a key piece in my system but I would most probably have to use other equipment in my room with my speakers to achieve my sonic expectation.
Perhaps if you would take a moment to describe specifically what you are trying to improve or change in your present situation you would find folks willing to help you achieve that.
Without more information you really can't expect anyone to make intelligent comments.
I guess that this board should cease to exist and all of the audiophile magazines should fold because everything discussed is too "subjective"."
The comment about the magazines is a good idea. People rely way too much on them, and end up making a lot of mistakes because of it. This thread should stand, however. Hopefully someone will read the magazine comment.
The PrimaLuna / XA 30.8 combo would sound significantly different compared to the INT 150. IMHO, the PrimaLuna / XA30.8 would be the way to go, but it would help if you would tell us what speakers you are using, how your system sounds to you and what kind of improvement you would like to hear.
The PrimaLuna is an excellent preamp. I know of no other preamp/amp/integrated components at this price level that have gotten the number of awards and rave reviews that the PrimaLuna products have. The raves come from owners as well as reviewers.
Many times when we try to upgrade our systems we get a sideways move instead of an upgrade. It sounds different but not necessarily better. So for now I'd hang on to the PrimaLuna and see if you can listen to the Pass amps to determine if one or the other is what you want.
Reno HiFi will let you buy Pass amps (including used amps) with an option to return, but it does cost money to return an amp (shipping and restocking fees). It is one way to hear the amps in your own system, though.
Tomcy6, thank you. I deal exclusively with Reno HiFi for my amplifier. Mark is the best in the business! I am using Super HL5 Plus speakers. My system sounds really great, but I am always looking to improve. Well, I want to really take it easy for a while and want to settle in with something great. That is why I am asking for some advice. I have read such rave reviews about the Dialogue, it is almost too good to be true, which is why I am asking others who have heard/compared it. I really want to slow down and just listen to music like I used to rather than changing/upgrading all of the time. It is wearing on me. Thank you for the input, it helps tremendously.
Tswisla, You're welcome. I think you have a really nice system and I would just enjoy it.
If you still get the urge to tweak it now and then, you could try a little tube rolling. You probably know that Kevin Deal at Upscale Audio is the distributor for PrimaLuna and also has a great stock of NOS tubes. You could check with him and see what tubes he might recommend as an upgrade to the stock tubes.
I'm glad you asked this question!! I'm thinking of getting something really high end and saw the Dialogue premium HP integrated. Then I'm thinking preamp/amp.
Is the Primaluna preamp really all that? Why does it have two 5ar4 rectifier tubes and the integrated doesn't? I don't see many manufactures using 5ar4 tubes but the real expensive Preamps from some companies do.