Audio Research REF Phono 3SE Phono Preamplifier review 

June 23, 2022 § Leave a comment

https://www.hifinews.com/content/audio-research-ref-phono-3se-phono-preamplifier

I don’t play trumpet. I cannot tell you what Miles used, or which saxes Adderley and Coltrane were blowing, but the sense of realism, the presence was enhanced to a degree that can only be attributed to – as Dave Gordon surmised – ‘The extremely low-level nature of the signals … [accounting] for what we consider a startling improvement’. And ‘startling’ is the perfect adjective for what I was hearing.

What can be dismissed from the outset, especially for those who are not diehard MM or MC fans without considering the alternative, is that there was no discernible preference for one over the other. Moreover the gain was such that high output MCs could easily be used via the Low Gain/47kohm setting with little loss of dynamics. I played four or five tracks with a London Gold, followed by an Ortofon 2M Bronze, then a Kiseki Blue [HFN Jul ’18], and lastly the Sumiko 40th Anniversary MC, all as a test.

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