The Affair revisited (Pre-les in NY)
Well it's been a while since I spoke to you, my fellow Audiogonites and we left with me attempting to make the jump from tubed pre amps back to solid state. I had just broken up with my last pre amp Line 1 (Sonic Frontiers) and before her the Rogue 66.
To begin where I left off, I believe that I had my sights on a Pass Alph because of the syrup filled mid range of the Rogue and the accurate but a little too agreeable sound of the line 1. It took a while for me to find a slightly experienced (second hand) Pass Alph at the price that I wanted. However, I did consider just picking up a new one if all else failed just for the simple fact that no one else had a chance to handle her and turn her knobs before I did.
The Pass Alph's performance was legendary and from what I heard, if you were into serious solid state, you couldn't be without taking a Pass out for a spin. Unfortunately, I decided to check out a new Pass and the price was kind of steep. She was mostly seen in places where the professional corporate type mostly hungout and not the bowling alley and local pubs that I like to be associated with thank you. She was used to performing best in classical settings as well as Jazz and acoustic. The more detail the better for her is the vibe I got from this "uptown girl". It really became evident that maybe I was out of my league with this beauty sporting a silvery face plate and excellent build, because she was being down played by her dealer and he constantly kept pushing me towards another part of the store. He kept saying that he may have something more my speed in the back if I had the time. Well my heart just sunk when I saw a finely dressed man pull up next to me and request the Pass and seeing her light up and nod in agreement as if this uptown guy was her prince in shining armor or something to that effect. The thought of someone else turning her on and her knobs for that matter brought desperate feelings and crazy thoughts that I quickly abandoned. I gave one last heart filled effort to convince the Pass that she would love the bowling alley crowd and when I told her what gear she would be associated with she shutdown and went into lockup or something and had to be rushed to the back for some adjustments and although the dealer said he believes that I did nothing to cause this he still has a skeptical look towards me every now and then.
After he sold the Pass he took me to the back and said the Pass has a "half" sister and although on the surface she may be the total opposite they really had a whole lot more in common than either one would like to adimit. A sister that just moved in a couple of years ago from the other side of town I asked and what side of town are you referring to may I ask? You know the side of town that no one goes to unless they are new in town themselves and learns the hard way later. The side of town where glare and thin sounding music is more the norm and you get to use your warranty more often then you'd like. Anyway, I started getting the "I guess it's a Sony for me after all" feeling when the dealer sat me down in this darkened room and took one of my CD's from me and told me to listen. I mumbled to myself, detail? yes. Accuracy, yes and then some!! I couldn't take it anymore and I asked what was I listening to and he said the Pass Alph's half sister the Adcom GFP 750. Well, I started putting on my jacket and pulling out my compass to locate the hills because that's where I saw myself running to when I heard it was an Adcom, I said the Adcom that used to be sold mass market? He said yes. I said the Adcom that wears out it's warranty before the warranty even expires? He said as it's been rumored. I said let me see this piece of gear in a demanding tone and he quickly turned on the lights and showed me the piece. It doesn't look like the other pre amps from this line I muttered to myself. The feel is hefty I continued. Flexible but not too many features, nice I again muttered. The dealer explained to me that the 750 was the result of a wild night out on the "other side of town" by the designer of the Pass Alph and that although it was at first a shock to the rest of the "uptown" community, no one could deny the 750's sonic ability that she obviously got from her, shall we say "better side". Despite the dealers obvious flaws as a human being, I became a little excited. Hesitant but willing I asked for an in home trial to see how she would get along with her rack mates. I never had anyone from the other side of the tracks in my system before and it really shouln't matter and if all goes well I do believe that I can make some room and permanent space for this basic black and intriguing pre amp in my life.
As I let her burn in I will let you guys know of my findings on her performance as well as reliablity.
Until next time.....
To catch the previous entry to this story look up Martice and look up my posts or go to Misc and look up the thread titled..The end of an affair.