Will the new C.A.T. LEGEND be the ultimate preamp?

Talked to Ken Stevens and he is about to unveil a new all out assalt preamp called the Legend.He said it will be a bigger difference between it and the ultimate than between the jl1 and the jl3.The 4 main changes are teflon boards,dual volume conrols,black gate cap. and about 15 more pounds of damping.Any further info would be helpful.

System/Avalon Diamonds
C.A.T. JL 3 Sigs
C.A.T. Ultimate
Transparent Opus
Basis MK v
Graham 2.2
Koetsu Onyx Plat.
Buy it and tell us...
Have 1 on order,was told will be shipped by March.Will post more info as I find out.
Thanks, good luck and keep us posted.

Straper, let me know when you get the new CAT Legend, I am interested in your Ultimate !

Hey Strapper, how much will this new preamp cost??????
Considering their performance and their built-in phono stages, CAT preamps have represented fairly decent value over the past 20 years. With the Legend priced at twice that of the Ultimate I'm not sure that will be case any longer. Please keep us posted as to your impressions.
Well it might be for a while, until the newest preamp/amp of the month show up. However I'm sure it will sound great and enhance your system.
By the way, that's a heck of a system. I'm told that the Avalon line is exceptional by many sources.
The new LEGEND will list for 15000.00 with phono and 13000.00 without,at that price it will have strong competition from Lamm,Asthetix,Manley Etc.
By the way thank you for the kind words about my system,
The diamonds are a truly special speaker .
Whatis CAT's phone number?
Try 716-359-2700.
C.A.T.s # is 585-359-2700.By the way I talked to Ken Stevens and he said it looks like April till he will be able to ship.
A little FYI. My friend is the CAT dealer in the Chicago area and has the SL1 Ultimate preamp and JL2 amp. At some point I imagine the Legend preamp may be on hand. Anyone wanting more information, please contact me. Disclaimer: I'm a dealer for other product lines and work with my friend to demonstrate CAT.
Thanks for the information. C.A.T.'s phone number is indeed 585-359-2700. The area code had changed.

I talked with Ken Stevens today and will soon be sending in my JL-2 for repair and upgrade. He said I was past the time for retubing (two-three year old unit) and that the tube that blew when I had a short could also have affected the other tubes in a negative manner (as could have the short), cutting their life. He said I may have to retube as well as do the repairs and upgrade ($2000?).

I asked about the Legend, and he said it will cost twice as much as the Ultimate, which means he will keep the Ultimate in the line because of its price point. This will be the first time he has not discontinued a preamp when a better version was developed. He is not now making a separate Legend phono preamp or linestage.

I asked about power cords for my amp (now using a BMI Shark vi) and Ken said he likes the Virtual Dynamics Power 3 presently. It costs $280 thru dealers.

I have long wanted a remote for my CAT preamp but realized that going wihout was the trade off for improved sonics. I brought up the subject with Ken, suggesting an old idea, an out board/add-on unit that simply,robot like, turned a few select knobs on the preamp. He said that Air Acoustics (Chris Hansen) had developed such a unit and offered it to him, but he turned it down. Apparently people don't seem to like the noise it made when operating or the feel of the extensions that touch the preamp knobs (squishy). Too bad. I still want a remote.
Mistake correction: no separate phono stage is what Ken Stevens told me, not no linestage.
Talked to Ken Stevens yesterday and the C.A.T. legend is still on course,but the new est. time of release is June or July.He is waiting for another batch of blackgate cap. the end of may then he will start production.I am sure it will be worth the wait.
The "ultimate pre-amp" will use Black Gate caps? Hmmm.
In addition to the changes decribed by Strapper211 I also heard he will use a 1:4 Jensen step-up transformer in the phono stage. Price will be 16K.

I thought black gate caps had been discontinued?
CAT bought more than $100K of Black Gates
bump = any new impressions?
probably not
Does the CAT pre amp have remote control yet???
Are you a dealer?
Who are you asking?
Who's on first !!!
Does anyone actually own this pre, or was it jusy a demo piece at a show?
I was asking anyone who was suspiciously gushing about this preamp and in particular, the author of the thread.
I see what you mean. I still get the sense that nobody actually owns one at home. The CAT Sl1 Ultimate MKII seemed to be a very evolved and perfected execution of that design and meeting with Ken's objectives for the type of sound and perfomance he prefers. I wonder if the Legend has a very different sound signature and approach to Ken's previous work; or the same basic approach with even better (if that is possible) parts so that if you did not like the CAT you wouldn't like the Legend since it is basically the same approach, only more so.
I am sure the new Cat is worth consideration. At that level,
the others that come to my mind are Nick Doshi and Messenger.
I am a happy owner of the Messenger, but would love to hear
the Legend or Doshi in my system. I actually have not heard
Hi,the Legend does exist and I do own one and no I am not a dealer just a convergent audio lover.It is 18000.00 with phono 16000.00 sans phono.It is a major step up from the ultimate but it is cut from the same cloth,I could go own about transparency,air,soundstage and dynamics but it is not a subtle difference.Also it has built it step-up 4to1 ratio transformers that can switched in or out for low output moving coils that work great.I believe the legend and the jl3s are a dream match and recommend anyone with jl3s to check it out.If you want to see the legend in my system check out my system posting for a picture.Ken has also just come out with a upgrade for the ultimate with the built in transformers and a new name.Hope this helps.
Strapper211, good to see a real life sighting. I assume, rightly or wrongly, that you previously owned the SL1 Ultimate, do you find the improvements in both the linestage and phono stage equally?
Hi,yes I had the Ultimate mk1 then mk2 before the Legend.I do not use digital so I am a bit of a disadvantage talking about the legend linestage,but through the phono that uses the linestage it is a massive improvement in transparency,air,soundstageing and layering of the music and because of the step-up transformers with the koetsu coral an incredible dynamic range.I do use the magnum dynalab md109 through the linestage and it sounds fantastic,but how much is the tuner and how much the legend I don't know.My advice is if you care enough about your music to use the jl2s or jl3s then definitely look into the Legend.
I talked to Ken yesterday for about two hours. The replacement for the Ultimate 2 is called the Renaissance. It retails for $7995 line only and $9995 with phono which also uses the step-ups, teflon boards and a couple other changes I don't recall. He said it was a pretty significant improvement over the Ultimate.

He's quite proud of the Legend and as previously described, it is another step or two above the Renaissance. I've only heard it at CES which means nothing but having owned an early SL-1 Sig, Sig 2, Sig 3, Ultimate and Ultimate 2, I have a pretty good idea of what he's achieved with the new models. Always very good stuff!